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Reviewed by Paul Johnson for Readers' Favorite
In Buck Trent by Frank Atwood, former soldier Buck Trent enters Arizona Territory in 1875. Unknown to him, there is a bounty on his head, placed by an unknown enemy. An enemy crippled in an explosion that happened toward the end of the Civil War. Barely alive, this man heard the name ‘Buck Trent’ before he passed out and woke up half a man. After a bit, Buck meets up with an old friend who decides to collect the bounty for himself. After all, he figures Buck will escape before he can be transported back to face his enemy, so why not collect the money and have a grand old time. But that’s not all; there’s also the ex-Buffalo soldier that finds the wanted poster. Not a bounty hunter, he still has thoughts as to what the money could buy.
The story moves rapidly along with several deadly incidents including Comancheros, attacking wolves, rattlesnakes, and a Cavalry deserter that wants to kill those he hates. In the end there is a battle where Buck, his wounded bounty hunter friend, and the ex-Buffalo soldier combine to fight overwhelming odds. How many, if any, will survive? This is a well-written and authentic western story. The author skillfully uses separate chapters to introduce his multiple characters that are engaging and believable. The dialogue is good and story moves quickly along. With multiple plots going along at the same time, the reader knows that somehow they are all tied together. I did find the title to be a touch deceiving since there seemed to be several main characters. Otherwise, very nicely done.