Publishing Date: November 2019
Publisher: Aurelia LEO, LLC.
Publisher’s Description: In a lawless American West transformed by the Second Civil War, part-time bounty huntresses Ramona del Toro and Jo Lilly take a job: find and capture a mysterious woman named Cottonmouth, accused of murdering an innocent man. As they track her through northern Arizona, southern Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico, Ramona and Jo encounter colorful people who can only point them in Cottonmouth’s direction. When Jo and Ramona finally catch up to Cottonmouth, she reveals the truth. Will the bounty huntresses join their target or trade her for a bag of cash?
Review: This was a novella that should have been a full length novel, as the characters are very compelling.
There is a constant and consistent “white men are evil” theme throughout the novel where rape, abduction and general shiftyness are attributed. Natives are held in high regard as are blacks with Mexican gangs making an appearance to level out the evil playing field. To say the race baiting is off the hook is mild in comparison to the militant lesbian perspectives rendered.
The plot holes are huge. For instance how are they able to have power, gas, food etc. in a region rife with lawlessness and killing? Who would want to truck in gas/food to the desert southwest? How do they get bullets, why are there no rifles, why are all white men rapists, how do armed nasty white men allow militant lesbians to beat them and subsequently, execute them without much resistance. How are two women armed with handguns able to kill 5 Mexican gang members with their guns drawn and pointing at them? How is the power grid still up? How are the highways passable? How does a .45 caliber round make you more of a threat? There is one bad metaphor….“She looks like she could beat a man to death with a wrench, then use the wrench to fix her car without wiping off the blood.”
What I loved about this novel was the author’s ability to craft characters in a novella length story with depth. Not only is the story line compelling but the scenes are rendered in exquisite detail with just a touch of poetry for vibrancy. The author does a great job of tempering the social message with a main character that just doesn’t give a shit about anyone’s perspectives and associative causes that encapsulates a formed identity.
This is brilliant writing. Don’t be fooled by the rating as it is the highest I give for stories that are novella in length.