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Publisher: Large Print Press$15.99Robert B. Parker's Ironhorse (Mass Market Paperback)
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For years, Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch have ridden roughshod over rabble-rousers and gun hands in troubled towns like Appaloosa, Resolution, and Brimstone. Now, newly appointed as Territorial Marshalls, they find themselves traveling by train through the Indian Territories. Their first marshaling duty starts out as a simple mission to escort Mexican prisoners to the border, but when the Governor of Texas, his wife and daughters climb aboard with their bodyguards and $500,000 in tow, their journey suddenly becomes a lot more complicated.
The problem is Bloody Bob Brandice. He and Virgil have had it out before, an encounter that left Brandice face-down in the street with two .44 slugs lodged in him. Now, twelve years later on a night train struggling uphill in a thunderstorm, Brandice is back - and he's not alone. Cole and Hitch find themselves in the midst of a heist with a horde of very bad men, two beautiful young hostages, and a man with a vendetta he's determined to carry out.
- ISBN-13: 9780399158117
- ISBN-10: 0399158111
- Publisher: Putnam Adult
- Publish Date: January 2013
- Page Count: 384
- Reading Level: Ages 18-UP
Series: Cole and Hitch Novel #1
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2012-11-26
- Reviewer: Staff
Parker wrote 68 mystery and western novels before he died in 2010; now screenwriter Knott continues Parker’s popular Virgil Cole series of gritty westerns featuring Parker’s two signature western characters: lawmen-for-hire Cole and Everett Hitch. Knott, however, cannot match Parker’s sharp style and careful blend of action, suspense, and dialogue, producing instead a melodramatic hayburner with a high body count and low excitement. Following Parker’s Blue-Eyed Devil, Virgil and Everett are now territorial U.S. marshals riding a train through the Indian Territories. When a white outlaw gang holds up a train, bullets fly, bodies drop, and female hostages are taken. The steely-eyed, cold-blooded marshals vow to save everyone and “rid this train of these thieves.” After a drawn-out gun battle, the few surviving robbers escape with the hostages but not what they were really after. Virgil, Everett, a steady town constable, and a deadly Choctaw pursue the gang, leading to a predictable, sappy showdown in an abandoned mining camp. Knott sticks to Parker’s portrayals of Virgil and Everett as hard-boiled, badge-toting gunmen whose simple solution to every problem is to shoot everybody in sight, but the result is a disappointing knockoff of a previously successful western series. Agent: Helen Brann, The Helen Brann Agency. (Jan.)