Jeremiah Cole has been sentenced to hang for lynching a priest, but
most people in New Mexico believe that Cole's father, a powerful
senator and ruthless land baron, will never let his son reach the
gallows. Yet gunman Britton Wade, who is slowly dying of consumption,
is determined to see justice carried out -- and make something out of
his life. Thus begins a violent, brutal journey from Santa Fe to
Chama. Wade is joined by another gunman, Clint Paden, and Paden's two
saddle pals, who have their own designs on Jeremiah Cole, and a fiery
Irish woman, Fenella Magauran, who is seeking her own justice.
They'll have to get past mobs of angry settlers who want Cole dead,
Senator Roman Cole and his men, who want Wade dead, warring Apaches,
turncoats, and a relentlessly harsh country along the Chama River. It's a journey that will change everyone.
Friday, April 29, 1898 The Northwest New Mexican published an interesting bit this past week. I quote part of it here: Tramps and sneak thieves will probably in the future give Chama a wide berth. The rope is a desperate but sure remedy. While I wouldn’t bet a plug nickel on the veracity of such a statement, I’d wager even less on the chance that carpet-bagging newspaper editor has staying in business once Sen. Cole reads that hifalutin editorial. The editor’s a newcomer, so she must not know the way things work in the Chama valley. The hanging is set two weeks from today, but nobody in the Territory believes that Jeremiah Cole will ever swing. Why, I dare say the case never would have come to trial if that Mex had not been appointed territorial governor, and Jeremiah most certainly never would have been convicted if not for the man who young Cole helped lynch. Appeals have run their course, so now everything rests on the will of God, or rather, the will of Sen. Roman Cole.
Copyright 2009 by Johnny D. Boggs
"This is not a simple Western .... His familiarity with the landscape
-- he lives near Santa Fe -- is a definite advantage as he puts the
reader right into New Mexico and particularly through the rugged
landscape along the Río Chama. And while this may seem to be a fairly
traditional Western, the conclusion is anything but. Another good read." -- Roundup