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Summer of the Gun

by Will Henry

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Be not afraid of any man,No matter what his size —When danger threatens, call on me —I will Equalize.

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When his two brothers leave home to fight in the Civil War, 9 year old Bubba McCalister is declared too young to assume the man's role on the family ranch. The family moves to town and because of their weak financial situation must live on the charity of others. When they receive letters indicating the brothers are coming home from the war, the family heads back to the family ranch.

Only days after they get there, a party of renegade Confederate soldiers on the run from Texas lawmen and the military police capture the brothers and head to the ranch. They take all hostage and eventually kill the elderly ranch hand plus one of their own who did not agree with the plan to use the women as sex slaves on the journey to California. Meanwhile Bubba has escaped their clutches and gives chase on foot. Eventually catching a horse, he catches up to the renegades and starts to eliminate them one by one using tricks and deception while also distracting them from their plans for the women. Eventually he saves his family with the assistance of a black man who has been forced to work for the renegades. Be prepared for much violence vividly described.

The novel reminds me of Louis L'Amour's novel, Down the Long Hills, about a 7 year old boy who escapes with his younger sister from an Indian using tricks and knowledge his father had taught him because Bubba is only 13 when he takes on the party of criminals. Both scenarios stretch credibility but make crackling good stories. ( )
  lamour | Nov 15, 2015 |
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Be not afraid of any man,No matter what his size —When danger threatens, call on me —I will Equalize.

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