Friday, December 21, 2007

Book Review: McMasters: Violent Sunday by Lee Morgan

Don’t let the cover fool you! This is not some weak western romance novel injected with a splattering of violence but a violent pulp western fueled by horrific gore and perverted cruel sex.

When the Cattleman’s Protective Association is in a jam, they call in their specialist: the .70 caliber rifle-toting cowboy Boyd Mc Masters. Part tracker- all killer, McMasters makes his living off of the deaths of others, and in this adventure (#6 in the series) “the others” are the Hell’s Killers, a gang of sadistic cannibalistic butchers who are not just satisfied with rustling cattle, but are compelled to torture and mutilate the ranchers, their families, and any one else who is either foolish or unlucky enough to stand in their way. The Association has placed a rather large bounty on each one of their inbreed heads, and McMasters aims to collect every last cent.

The trail leads McMasters to Packer Point (could the name Packer be a reference to Albert Packer, a western cannibal?), a fortress-like mountain railroad station own and operated by the Tanner Family (isn’t a tanner someone who skins animals – well as you can guess, the author is having a lot of fun with the cannibal premise.) What follows, without giving away any spoilers, is an 1882 version of The Hills Have Eyes set in Montana’s snowy Blue Pine Hills. Two-gun action, sex and death, and more death abound in this delightfully mean-spirited horror western that kicks like a shotgun blast to the chest and ends with all the momentum of a runaway train –literally.

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