My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Here we have a novel with serious flaws and misconceptions put together after the author’s death from notes and outlines. Could this book be prophetic and was W.W. Johnstone thinking of writing it as a satire? It wouldn’t take a lot of vocabulary changes to make this 2010 novel mirror our 2017 situation today.
The ghost writers have attempted to make it into a thriller by slinging a lot of lead around. The reader will therefore be advised to wash their hands before eating directly after reading to avoid a case of lead poisoning. That said, the original plot had potential:
The President is off his rocker and hopes to be able to take away all American 2nd amendment authorized weapons. Must be off his rocker! POTUS is also orchestrating a secret nerve gas experiment in S. Texas. Whoa! The little town of Home, TX is going to be his experimental test site since it’s just down the road from the factory. Crazy man!
You will want to root for Pete McNamara whose spunky first chapter shootout with some Mexican Drug cartel guys actually is the best chapter in the book. Too bad he isn’t featured all the way through! You’ll also like Police Chief Alex Bonner and her tiny department of cops who try to stand against first the government takeover of Home after the guns have been removed. She also makes stands against a bunch of drug cartel thugs who would steal the President’s nerve gas for their own purposes. But the nerve gas is on its way and someone has to stop it before it gets tried out on Home. The side story of the two rogue CIA agents and the runaway factory chemist gets a little too complicated for this whole scenario, so you probably won’t bond with Fargo and Parker. More lead will soon be flying! Minor characters fit the microbiologists nomenclature TNTC (Too numerous to count). I lost track. Some questions for the ghost writers arise after my reading: The President is a liberal? Oops! Liberal Presidents are the best thing since Mother Flag and Apple Pie for gun and ammunition sales and proliferation in this country without guns ever being taken away. Why would a liberal President destroy our economy so badly? Must really be off his rocker! This book is not written by “the master” whom we remember as the man who actually rode the Indian, Mountain Man and Cavalry trails that appeared in his original writings. His legacy is gone but you can still find his original amazing historical fiction novels. My rating of a 2 out of 5 would have been lower but for his name on the cover. I had hoped to find a smidgen of W.W. in this book. I didn’t. (R.I.P.) W.W. Johnstone.