Friday, November 9, 2018

Billy Old, Arizona Ranger by Geff Moyer

Billy Old, Arizona Ranger
A Historical Novel Based on a True Story
by Geff Moyer

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: 2016
Publisher: Sunstone Press
Genre: Historical, Thriller, Western
Paperback: 270
Rating: 4

First sentence(s):
October, 1934, Taos, New Mexico
She couldn't remember the last time she tasted meat, let alone what type of meat it was.

In this historical novel, Billy Old and Jeff Kidder were Arizona Rangers at the turn of the twentieth century and best friends. In 1908, while acting in the line of duty, Kidder was murdered by five crooked Mexican policemen. No charges were filed against his killers. They were quietly skirted away to various locations throughout the county of Sonora, Mexico, a vast, desolate area covering nearly twenty thousand square miles. In 1909, shady politics in the Territory of Arizona brought about the disbanding of the Rangers, leaving many to drift into obscurity and some into degradation. In that same year Billy Old vanished into Sonora to find and kill the men responsible for his friend’s death. He returned close to two years later with that deed accomplished. During Billy’s search of hundreds of sleazy Sonora whorehouses and cantinas he experiences many exciting, humorous, and tragic encounters. There’s a bloody and deadly confrontation with four scalp hunters; a mystical meeting with an old, dying Hopi Indian; an attack by the legendary “Red Ghost” of the southwest; a sorrowful meeting with a past fellow Ranger; cannibal Indians from East Texas; renegade Apaches; flushing toilets; the wonders of ether; Dancing Devils—fifty-foot high swirling dust funnels that can blind an animal; and a whore named Abbie Crutchfield who proves vital to Billy’s quest. And then there’s his horse Orion and a mule named Captain, all a part of a critically changing time in the American Southwest. Includes Historical Background and Readers Guide.

My two-bits:

Got a good sense of the location and vibe of the American Southwest while following this mystery/revenge story.

The story is told in flip flop fashion with its past and present incidents to unfold the friendship formed between Billy and Jeff.

All kinds of characters are met along the way to adequately create the time and place. I was taken with the side stories about horses.


* review copy courtesy of author

* part of the Blog All About It Challenge: Escape (here)
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