In an age when Texan independence, neglect, and technology have ushered in a new age of lawlessness, small town sheriff Jasper Davis Crow holds the line of justice in
the town of Dead Oak.
Longhorns trample a rancher in what appears to be a brutal accident. The new deputy from Austin is convinced that it's murder and J.D. is inclined to agree when their investigation uncovers a bizarre conspiracy.
This book has a great narrative that is delightfully sarcastic. I enjoyed the way the story unfolds. There's also a sneaky sub-plot which is hinted at throughout the book which becomes very significant by the end leading readers to believe and look forward to a second book in this world. The undercurrent in the narrative was intriguing and kept me guessing.
Eichenlaub offers up a futuristic world seen through the eyes of a character that is very "old school" cowboy. You have a relatable main character in an unfamiliar world which helps guide the reader through this dystopian-like future. There are lots of interesting tech in this world. I think a lot more will be explored if there is a book two.
Eichenlaub's title character, J.D., while very cowboy-ish is also not your stereotypical cowboy. I appreciated the moments of vulnerability and growth that Eichenlaub explored with this character. I liked how the relationship between J.D. & Trish changed through the story also. I think she'll be an excellent character to explore in the future!
There are a few things I did not like. One was a cigarette-smoking 11 year old. The other was the religious fanatical element of the story. There was a good amout of religious slamming and not a good character counterpoint to the fanaticism. I had hoped more Hopi would have come in to play, and I think it will if this becomes a series. However, I tire of crazy religious leaders who have clearly not read the New Testament or anything Jesus taught.
Overall, Eichenlaub is a great storyteller. He masterfully laces subtle hints along the current of the main story to create a multi-layered plot structure. He creates unique characters and an interesting setting. I look forward to more from this author.
Just released December 2016: "The Forgotten" volume 2 "Heir of the Heretic"
Reviewed and awarded the
2016 Indie Editor's Choice
by the Historical Novel Society.
Long listed for the Historical Novel Society 2017 Indie Award.
Goodreads profile at: https://www.goodreads.com/JElse