Book Review: No Good Like It Is by McKendree R. Long
1858, Fort Gibson, Indian Territory. Second Lieutenant Dobey Walls meets and bonds with veteran Corporal Jimmy Melton. As the Civil War begins, they leave to join the 8th Texas Cavalry in Houston, then take part in the first and the final charges of the Army of Tennessee. Between those events, they ride with Nathan Bedford Forrest, play an honorable role in the Fort Pillow Massacre, harass Sherman with Shannon's Raiders, and visit the second best brothel in Atlanta.
As surrender looms, they're released to search for Dobey's long-missing family in the Texas Panhandle. Their efforts are hampered by destitute farmers, lonely widows, dangerous militia, freed slaves, and runaways, who increase their numbers and excitement. In the process, they save a quadroon and her daughter from Yankee deserters who have stolen a Union payroll. This act of mercy brings them romance but puts Pinkerton detectives and a renegade lawman on their trail. Confederate Cherokees and Cheyenne Dog Soldiers add to the chaos.
I'm not a fan of westerns or war novels but agreed to read this book in the hopes of expanding my horizons. At first glance, No Good Like It Is sounded like North and South to me. I attempted to read the North and South trilogy by John Jakes last year, after watching and loving the television mini-series (which was shot in 1985 and starred Patrick Swayze and Kirstie Alley). I couldn't get into the North and South books because they feature so many battle scenes. After 100 pages of No Good Like It Is, I have decided that I'm really not a fan of westerns.
This book is well done. I can tell that the author has military experience and a thorough knowlege of American history. The plot, characters, and dialogue are very thoughtfully written. I couldn't finish No Good Like It Is because I don't like reading about battle scenes. The first 100 pages were almost non-stop action/battle sequences that I just couldn't get into.
You've written a good book, McKendree R. Long III. It's not you, it's me. It really is.
It was good but I couldn't finish because westerns just aren't for me.
Did Not Finish *I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an impartial review.