- File Size: 2547 KB
- Print Length: 210 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Dioscuri Press; 1 edition (April 17, 2017)
- Publication Date: April 17, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B01N4OYM2L
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
#19,348 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
- #2 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > History > Americas > United States > 19th Century > Old West
- #4 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Westerns > Science Fiction
- #40 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Westerns > Frontier & Pioneer
|Print List Price:||$9.99|
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Coilhunter - A Science Fiction Western Adventure (A Coilhunter Chronicles Novel) (The Coilhunter Chronicles Book 1) Kindle Edition
|Length: 210 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Let me back up to the cover, where artist Duy Phan brought Nox and his monowheel and toys to life. I was first drawn to this book by the cover art and then the description. That's how you reel in potential readers. Kudos!
Nox, who wears the star of a sheriff on his breast, is actually a bounty hunter in this cruel world where there are no lawmakers and no lawkeepers. Nox strikes fear into the hearts of not only good folks, but also criminals, and he wants them to know he's coming for them. As he hunts for those on the wanted posters to earn some coils, the currency in the Wild North, he also searches for justice--or at least revenge--for his murdered family.
Coilhunter is a well written science fiction western adventure, a real treat for your senses. According to Wilson, the Coilhunter Chronicles will be at least four books, all standalone tales of Nox's adventures, and can be read out of order. I've already pre-ordered Rustkiller, and will be anxiously awaiting its arrival to my Kindle in October. I can't recommend this book enough!
Nox is the Coilhunter, a bounty hunter in a land that might be the only thing tougher than him. The story pulls the reader into his life of searching for wanted criminals, and sandwiched between these captures and killings is his never-ending search for the murderer of his family. Nox moves from one encounter to the next with a melodramatic flair, a one-liner for every situation (though most of his answers usually center around death or a bad outcome for the other person).
The Coilhunter is a man bordering on near superhero status. He has fantastic gear that he employs, and his skills are far above most men. In one instance, when a fleeing criminal takes to the rooftops, Nox “…ran towards the wall, simultaneously throwing a knife from his belt at the stone, where it lodged in place, and then another a little further up, and another higher still. He used them like stairs, dashing up the sides of the blades.” While this might strain one’s belief level, Dean Wilson’s talent makes it all seem like an everyday thing. After all, why wouldn’t the Coilhunter possess these skills?
Though this book leads into a Coilhunter series, Mr. Wilson ties everything up nicely and avoids the potential cliffhanger. This was a quick, enjoyable read and I look forward to the next Coilhunter Chronicles Novel. Five stars.
I mention this because, without that context, it could be easy to dismiss Coilhunter‘s prose as excessively colorful or too much. But within a couple of pages, I realized that that wasn’t a bug in Coilhunter; it was the design, creating a book that lived and breathed its Western atmosphere in every single word. With verbose killers, colorful turns of speech, and all sorts of fun writing, Coilhunter ends up being a lot of fun, and the prose is part of that, creating a rich, lived-in tapestry.
That Wilson is good as Westerns isn’t a surprise; what’s surprising to me is that Coilhunter is a Western in the first place, since it’s technically set in the same world as Wilson’s grim Great Iron War series. Wilson’s taken one of his more fascinating character – the titular Coilhunter, who makes his living as a bounty hunter in the less settled parts of that world – and written a book around him. The plot is pretty traditional fare, especially for the Western genre: the Coilhunter chases bounties, only to find that one he’s taken up could lead him to the killers of his family. But Wilson takes it on with style and panache, bringing his sci-fi steampunk Western world to vivid life, filling the pages with interesting characters and odd locales, and making it stand on its own.
More than that, Wilson has a great lead character in the Coilhunter, whose gadgets, tricks, and lethal abilities make him both a great hero and an exciting one to watch. Like so many Westerns, the question isn’t really if the Coilhunter is going to succeed; the question is, how will he pull it off. Even more to the point, though, Wilson makes his Western world all its own, making it stand out from the Great Iron War to the point where it feels less like a spinoff and more like its own series. With bounty hunter towns, old friends, and spectacular lawless zones, Wilson brings the world – and the characters – to life in a satisfying way, all while peppering things with his usual strong action sequences.
If there’s a knock on Coilhunter, it’s that the story feels more generic and formulaic than I’ve come to expect from Wilson; there’s little sense of surprise in what happens here or how things unfold. None of that keeps the book from being engaging or entertaining, mind you; it’s executed well enough that I tore through it quickly, eager to stay in this world for a while. But I’m more excited to see what happens in the next books in the series, now that Wilson has set the stage and cleared off some of the necessary backstory to get things moving. Here’s hoping it comes soon.