A seven-time Spur award winner, Elmer Kelton has re-published two short novels written in the 1960s about vengeance and conflict in West Texas. The first story, titled “Pecos Crossing,” tells the tale of two cowboys who accidentally cause the death of a wife of a former Texas Ranger. The Ranger vows vengeance and tries to track down the two young men. The second story is titled “Shotgun.” Macy Madock seeks revenge against a rancher who sent him to prison ten years earlier. Madock is ruthless and will stop at nothing to destroy the rancher. Both stories end in a gunfight with surprising results.
I enjoyed both stories; they were fast paced and contained plenty of action. The author is able to combine human emotion with stories of western life in Texas in the late 1800s. With this skill, Kelton has become one of the premier western writers of our time.