Thursday, July 14, 2016

Rest in Peace by Jack MacLane

Rest in Peace
by Jack MacLane (Bill Crider)
1990 Zebra

Non-Weird Western horror is pretty rare, so it was nice to run across this one.  A family of murdering bandits, the Harps, live in the outskirts of the Central Texas town of Springville established after the Civil War.  The noble West family move a little too close, and the cowardly townspeople don't give them enough warning to protect them from being slaughtered.

Generations later, and a descendant of the sole survivor of the massacre returns to town, down on his luck and hoping to take advantage of the property he's inherited.  The Harps have descendants there as well, now petty criminals with stories of their violent heritage.
Some spoilers here, though it's obvious that this is about history repeating itself.  The finale was spoiled a bit for me because of the tone.  I was expecting some suspense or horrific scenes before the Wests defended themselves, but this goes straight into action mode with fistfights and gun battles.  Nothing wrong with that, except that it takes the horror out of the horror novel.

All the Goodreads reviewers mention this being Splatterpunk and drippy with gore - I know I'm jaded, but don't recall anything particularly gory about this one.

The tone shift through me off, but I enjoyed the writing style, and I'll definitely be reading the rest of Crider's MacLane books.

Available in multiple formats from Smashwords

Available in Kindle from Amazon

Read an excerpt

1 comment:

  1. This book changed editors in mid-stream. Long story, but it's part of the reason for the shift.