Deep In The Heart of 1837

Deep In The Heart of 1837

If it seems like I’ve been a little disengaged lately, it’s because I’ve been deep in the heart of 1837 New Mexico again, working on another novel about the tax rebellion that occurred here in the winter of 1837/38.

If you’ve read No Secret Too Small, you know I’ve already written a novel about these events. That story was from the point of view of a child whose family drama ultimately took precedence over even a governor’s grisly death.

This new novel, There Will Be Consequences,focuses on the adults who participated on both sides of the 1837/38 rebellion. This book is a departure for me in that it contains only people who actually lived through the events in the story, including Governor Albino Pérez, rebel leader José Angel Gonzales, Santa Fe gambler Gertrudes “Doña Tules” Barceló, Taos priest Antonio José Martinez, and that most flexible of New Mexico’s politicians, Manuel Armijo. It dives deeply into their responses to events and the rationale for their actions.

I’m excited about this book. Writing “real” characters was a challenge, but invigorating at the same time. I’m looking forward to seeing what you think of it! Watch this space for more information and the cover reveal/preorder link on November 10!

The Lights of Cimarron: Book Review

The Lights of Cimarron cover
Five Star Publishing, April 2019
ISBN-13: 978-1432851187

It’s always a treat to discover that a book I’m reading and enjoying is part of a series, so I was delighted to discover that the characters in Jim Jones’ The Lights of Cimarron are featured in other books as well.

Set in Cimarron, New Mexico in the 1870s, The Lights of Cimarron features Tommy Stallings, a very young sheriff who has the makings of a great man. He’s fallible, a little insecure, and he has a great mentor who’s a legend among sheriffs and a wife who doesn’t take him too seriously.

Tommy has challenges, though. For one thing, Colfax County officials want him to relocate to the new county seat in Springer, away from Cimarron where his wife is a teacher. So there are marital issues.

More ominously, there’s a gang of rustlers at work in the County and they’re doing more than stealing stock. They’re killing people, women and children as well as men, and leaving mutilated bodies in their wake.

But Tommy’s been charged with taking a bribe, a charge a local mayor seems more concerned with than murder. The accusation is keeping Tommy from finding and dealing with the rustlers. In fact, the mayor seems to be using it to block the rusting investigation. Can Tommy clear his name and get the rustlers too?

In my opinion, the test of a good series is whether the books in that series can stand alone as separate stories. This one does. It’s a pleasure to read and left me wanting to know more about the characters and what will become of them in the future. I’m looking forward to locating and reading the Jared Delaney series, of which The Lights of Cimarron is a spin-off.

If you’re looking for a light-hearted Western with interesting characters and which is part of a series, I definitely recommend The Lights of Cimarron!