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Friends Paperback – September, 1994

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Willie Goodwin, the hero of this first-rate debut, is getting old. He'd like nothing better than to sit back, drink and reminisce with his friend Clete Shannon. But Clete, no spring chicken himself, is sheriff of the Dakota Territory town of Two Scalp and needs Willie's help as his deputy. A ruthless killer is on the loose in the spring of 1877, and when he kills Jesse and Nell McLeod by setting fire to their home, Willie and Clete begin a relentless journey to track down the perpetrator and exact rough justice. Willie's salty first-person account of the two tired lawmen's pursuit is interspersed with short, taut third-person passages depicting the killer as a malevolent force of nature whom civilized society must halt if balance is to be restored. The story is expertly and methodically plotted without being mechanical. Willie and Clete, as they seek retribution, are as driven as the man they hunt. A twist ending, which explains the psychopath's actions with references to another long-dead badman and an incestuous relationship, surprises and satisfies with psychologizing that gives the book a modern feel without betraying its western sensibility. While the story ends with Willie again hoping for retirement, readers may very well want Clete and his erstwhile deputy to saddle up at least one more time.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

This unusual first novel is a thoughtful study of friendship and character as well as the suspenseful chase of a brutal and sadistic killer across Dakota Territory in 1877. Sheriff Clete Shannon of Two Scalp pursues the killer with his less-than-perfect deputy, Willie Goodwin, who is 50 years old, a drinker, and a poor shot. However, he is a good friend. During the hazardous hunt, a variety of characters turn up, all of whom are worth the reader's careful attention. Willie, who narrates the story, has a picaresque, colloquial Texas style, flavored with appreciation of the Dakota landscape and considerable profanity and obscenity that are common to most of the characters. There's a lot of graphic sex, too. Hackenberry has a gift for the genre; a writer to watch.
- Sister Avila, Acad. of Holy Angels, Minneapolis
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Harpercollins (Mm); 1st edition (September 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061008397
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061008399
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 4.2 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,470,480 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tony Lewis on December 3, 2008
Format: Paperback
Excellent read. Good solid western writing. An excellent tale, well written, with some great thoughts in it. I finished it this morning and got on Amazon to buy his other two books.
Was shocked to find this was a first novel. lots of good surprises here.
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