The Black Cap of Darlene Nightingale


Fiction - Short Story/Novela
17 Pages
Reviewed on 11/29/2020
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Author Biography

Robert E. Kearns authored the novels Hy Brasil: Island of Eternity, Crabb and Carnivore.
In addition, he's composed multiple short stories, many of which have received high critical praise.
Robert lives and writes in Dublin.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

When the small rural town of Clover, Texas loses the one man who maintained law and order, the town seeks a replacement. The only problem is they don’t want to have to pay a salary. Darlene Nightingale points this out quite clearly. Their only recourse is to appoint her as sheriff and judge. There’s little argument and a minister steps forward to swear her in. Darlene is determined to clean up the town; she will not tolerate any dissent. But, then she becomes too heavy-handed and dons a black cap she fashions herself, something that becomes her trademark.

Robert E. Kearns’s short story, The Black Cap of Darlene Nightingale, has all that a good old western yarn requires - a fascinating plot, a battle between good and evil, the struggles to tame the wild west, and so much more. The story is told in narrative form, much like the storytellers of old. It’s a legend that will have the reader captivated from beginning to end, with its compelling plot and distinctively thorough descriptive passages. There is little dialogue, but the story evolves well without a conversation between characters. This is a work of storytelling art and the author has indeed captured the adventure and spirit of the old west with his depiction of the ever-vigilant law enforcer, in this case, a woman, and the gun-slinging, bar-brawling brigands. Creating a female in the role of law enforcer in the old west is a legend in itself. A story well told.