The Six-Gun Tarot by R.S. Belcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Full disclosure: I had the pleasure of attending several panels Rod was on and even got a hug from him at a convention. He's a super nice guy and an entertaining and knowledgeable author. It was actually due to meeting him and hearing him speak that I decided to pick up his book.
Six-Gun Tarot is what I would call a paranormal western. I haven't read any westerns, paranormal or normal, but I've seen a few on TV :-) The book is set in the small town of Golgotha, where weird shit happens all the time and the townsfolk just try to survive and forget the crazy stuff that happens. It's very much like Sunnydale in that respect. The story has a wide range of characters from a young boy on the run to a recent widow with assassin's training (though she did not kill her husband) to a Mormon elder with a gay lover. All of the characters are distinctly different and interesting. I also enjoyed the different cultures present in the town of Golgotha. There are various religious groups, a China-town, along with what is a shantytown that is a group by itself.
Even though this is the first in a series, there is a complete story here. And it is EPIC. I don't know where Rod will go with the series after this because the big bad was vanquished or at least put back to sleep. I am curious what the next book will be. I am definitely interested in the future of the characters like the sheriff who cannot die, the young boy who has a magical glass eye, the Native American deputy who appears to be the son of Coyote, and the aforementioned assassin widow. I'd be all right if that's the drive of the series: These disparate characters and the weirdness they must deal with. But not sure how Rod will top the monster in this book. It was huge.
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