The Loving Wrath of Eldon Quint
by Chase Pletts
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Pub Date 14 Sep 2021 | Archive Date 16 Jul 2021
“Pletts’s ambitious debut weaves our history into an intense narrative for today's readers.” —Alan Geoffrion, author of Broken Trail
Eldon Quint toils as a farmer on the Dakota frontier. The widowed father leaves the faintest impression as he moves through the world, wishing to shield his sons from the violence that shaped his own childhood.
His twin brother, an outlaw known by his chosen name—Jack Foss—leaves only bloodshed in his wake After years of estrangement end in violence on a winter morning in 1883, the farmer Eldon Quint sets off to rid the world of the outlaw Jack Foss once and for all.
A Note From the Publisher
2) WESTERN REVIVAL: We’re experiencing a revival in westerns, including Philip Meyer’s The Son, Patrick DeWitt’s Sisters Brothers, and Andrew Hilleman’s World, Chase Me Down.
3)TOP SELECTION IN THE INKSHARES MANUSCRIPT COMPETITION: selected out of thousands of entries for the top pick in literary fiction in the inaugural Inkshares-LaunchPad contest with Ridley Scott.
“A compelling story of survival and redemption.”—Daryl Maxwell, the Los Angeles Public Library
“Pletts does not pull any punches. He’s crafted a rich novel that flows with remarkable energy and intoxicatingly lush writing.” —Sarah Nivala, Book Soup
National Media Coverage. National Public Radio Campaign. Advance Review Copies. Select Author Events in California. Digital Marketing. Online Advertising and Social Media Campaign. Western Fiction, Literary & Historical Fiction Book Club Outreach. Targeted Outreach to Film, Entertainment & Literary Websites. Blog and Podcast Tour. NetGalley Inclusion. Goodreads Giveaways.
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The Dakota frontier, 1883. "...the blizzard had swallowed everything-the forest, the river, the men shooting at him...he levered his Winchester...trying to repay the man who'd shot his horse...on foot now...they'd started shooting...five or six, maybe more...[falling] into a ravine...pulled out by a figure...a face he hadn't seen in years, a face just as rough and broken as his own". Eldon Quint, a quiet Farmer and man of few words, had come face to face with his "larger than life" Outlaw twin brother Clayton aka Jack Foss.
The Farmer, a widower, was fighting the blinding snowfall to reach his "...pitched-roof cabin of tarred logs and yellowed chinking...", the humble log cabin built atop the old foundation after their clapboard home had burned. Eldon worried about his sons, Shane, eleven and Ian, seven, left all alone. Farmer pointed his Winchester at Outlaw and declared,"You're not bringing this mess near my house". The mess referred to was the Tricky Bender Gang, out to gun down Jack Foss.
Mounting Outlaw's horse, riding double, the brothers arrived at Farmer's abode and prepared for the Bender Gang's onslaught. Jack had been a "blight" on Eldon's reputation. "Thirty five years of looking after a brother who did nothing but drag him down, who forced him to return to the frontier to raise a family". A gun battle ensued. "A shot punched [Shane] in the gut, piercing the journal in his jacket pocket...scraps of paper floating down, settling on his chest, like flakes of snow, each piece scribbled with dreams, fears, desires. Fanciful stories about gunslingers and cowboys...". Eldon's thoughts turned back to his sins. "They'd cost him a wife, son, brother". Jack's eyes were "all stirred up by the whiskey". Seven year old Ian asks, "Are you gonna kill Uncle Jack?"
At first light, travelling the icy roads, Eldon and seven year old Ian would ride by wagon from Dakota to Springfield to bury eleven year old Shane next to his mother, Hattie. Eldon often sleepless, heard Jack's voice, "Ian's weak...Ye made him weak". A far cry from the tyrannical upbringing encountered by favored first born Eldon and younger twin, Clayton. Ian's kindness was evident. Ask twenty year old, Minn Yancy.
"The Loving Wrath of Eldon Quint" by Chase Pletts is a work of western historical fiction exploring the interaction between twin brothers Eldon and Clayton, Farmer vs. Outlaw, respectively. Both are flawed individuals. Both ask God for forgiveness. "Is Uncle Jack a bad man? If you do bad things, can you still be good?" What about Eldon? In order to lay Shane to rest "he would return to a world he'd spent the last thirteen years running from". Which brother is which? "...he caught his reflection in the backbar mirror. The beard...the dark clenched eyes, the cold expression. He looked more like Jack Foss than Eldon Quint". Highly recommended.
Thank you Inkshares and Net Galley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The Loving Wrath of Eldon Quint by Chase Pletts
Dark, gritty, violent story of twin brothers that managed to survive their childhood then moved on to an adulthood that saw one becoming a farmer with a family and the other an outlaw with a bounty on his head. A difficult meeting between the two after thirteen years apart leads them into a situation where survival is questionable for either of them.
This story had gunfights, brawls, torture, murder, bounty hunters, people running for their lives, a woman with a dream, a young boy who had seen too much, evil men aplenty and two brothers that are more alike than they are different.
What I liked:
* The real feel of the story
* The backstory of the two brothers
* Eldon and Clayton: they managed to make it through years of hardship only to face more in this book. In the end their connection was stronger than either may have realized. I also admired their care for Ian and Minn.
* Minn: a strong woman that deserved the freedom she sought
* The snippets of the past as they were told throughout the book
* The way I began to ponder the lives of the men, their actions, how they ended up where they did and why.
* That there was so MUCH to contemplate
* That I could draw my own conclusions at the end of the story
* The author’s note at the end of the book telling what was happening during the time he wrote most of this story.
What I did not like:
* The despicably evil men that were chasing Minn and the brothers
* That there was so much sadness, loss and cruelty more than one experienced
Did I enjoy this book? Hard to say “enjoy” but I was definitely drawn in and could not stop reading.
Would I read more by this author? Yes
Thank you to NetGalley and Inkshares for the ARC – This is my honest review.
Special thanks to NetGalley and Inkshares for allowing me an advanced copy of this book!!
Chase Pletts is an amazing writer, let me start off there. Everything is described to perfection in this book, and done in a way that doesn't halt the story with the usual, "the room looked like this, the person looked like this.." NO! Chase does a wonderful job of adding all the details into the story in a way that seems so fluid, so natural. I thoroughly enjoyed his sentences, his word choices are superb!
The story itself is truly a page turner. Rich with action and adventure, this story will leave you excited for more and sad when it's over. In fact I ended up reading the last couple chapters over and over to try and figure out the ending (not spoiling it)! The character feel so real, and if someone told me this story was actual a historical document, I would believe them.
I love pioneer type historical fiction and this book does it so well. With the two brothers, one "farmer" one "outlaw", there is a lot of back and forth, stories of the past meld with stories of these character's present. If you are a fan of anything 18th century pioneer type historical fiction, or you just want a really good adventure story...this is THE book!
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