In 1965 Constable Cody Parker’s frightening dreams of gathering storm clouds for the tight-knit Parker family from Center Springs, Texas, proved accurate. Cody is ambushed and nearly killed on a lonely country road during an unusually heavy snowfall. With that attack, the locals fear that a disturbed murderer “the Skinner” has returned to their community.
While his nephew recovers, Constable Ned Parker struggles to connect a seemingly unrelated series of murders. As the summer of 1966 approaches, rock and roll evolves to reflect the increasing unrest in the country, and the people of northeast Texas wonder why their once-peaceful community has suddenly become a dangerous place to live. Ned’s preteen grandchildren, Top and Pepper, are underfoot at every turn. The two lawmen, along with the Deputy John Washington, cross paths with many colorful citizens, including cranky old Judge O. C. Rains; the jittery farmer Isaac Reader; and the Wilson boys, Ty Cobb and Jimmy Foxx. And then there’s the arrival in their small community of a mysterious old man named Tom Bell.
Now recovered, Cody decides to follow his main suspect across the Rio Grande and into Mexico. Ned understands that to save his nephew, he will have to cross more than a river - he will have to cross over to the right side of wrong.
Humor, suspense, horror, precognition, and life in the tumultuous 1960s all play a part in the solving of this mystery….
©2013 Reavis Z. Wortham (P)2013 Blackstone Audio
This third installment of the Red River mysteries is once again a good old fashioned, rip roaring, 1960's, Texas, western. The story combines more modern day western thrills with lawmakers and desperadoes, and great yarns narrated by a couple of pre-teen scalawags. You'll pardon my language, considering I just finished this thoroughly entertaining book!
Constable Cody Parker was shot at while driving down a backroad during an unusual Texas snow storm. Badly smashed within his car and a tree, Cody is rescued by a new elderly man in town, Tom Bell, just in time to save Cody's body from becoming food for a hungry pack of wild dogs. Constable Ned Parker begins the search for the shooter and finds himself caught in a new evil coming to his town. Tearing down illegal whiskey stills was easy work compared to the trouble caused by these new drug traders. Meanwhile, the kids, Top and Pepper, are satisfying their curiosity about, Ted Bell. Thus the adventures and goosebumps begin!!
Once again, Wortham combines, mystery, thrills, humor, and good old fashioned story telling as his characters get into, and barley out of, trouble. Red River is still a distinctly segregated place, but the main characters are a mix of whites, blacks, American Indians, and Mexicans who defy these boundaries within their communities to work and love together, as God intended. The misadventures of Top and Pepper add a rich element to the story as well. This book is not quit like any other book out there today, and is a greatly appreciated change. I thoroughly enjoyed this third installment, and am looking forward to many more books from Reavis Z Wortham.
I don't usually rush out for all the "best sellers", but give each intriguing book/author a look. I have found many diamonds in the rough.
Thanks to Ronna for reviewing this book/series. This book starts with suspense from the first page with one of the main characters, "Cody" getting into a car accident after being shot at. He is very lucky that the new stranger in town happens along to save him from freezing to death and/or being eaten by wolves.
Cody is the constable and during his recuperation the Judge in town reappoints the former constable, his Uncle, " Ned Parker". Ned is grandfather to two young hooligans, "Top and Pepper", who are constantly trying to entertain themselves without getting into some kind of trouble. Top has a special gift and his fearless girl cousin Pepper is cantankerous and swears like a sailer.
Ned sets out to solve the mystery of who tried to kill Cody when he comes across some no good trouble makers who are suspected in a double murder and drug running. Between the unknown, curious new stranger in town who definitely has some secrets and more perplexing murders, Ned and Cody have their hands full.
The close knit Parker family lawmen make for a fantastic story. The characters are so matter of fact and real that I could not pull myself away from this great listen. The narrator does an excellent job of grasping each individuals personality and perfectly paces the rise and falls in the story. Very good combination, I would rank Wortham and Burns right up there with Johnson and Guidall in the Longmire series. I did not want it to end and will definitely be listening the the two books proceeding this one. I did not use a credit because of the price but I would if they were more. Two thumbs up.
Who says, "Money can't buy happiness? It buys Books & Yarn....I'm happy! 💜
As the third Red River Mystery I've listened to in three days, I think this may be the best of all so far. Wortham does not disappoint. And narrator Traber Burns is the perfect voice for this very cool series. I'd write more but I'm off the buy the next one. :O)
This is an excellent story. The reason for my 4 star rating in the story category is that I don't like profanity. The story is sprinkled with it. At first I was reluctant to continue but the volume itself overrode my objections to some of the language that was used. Mind you this narrative is by no means vulgar or obscene. I recommend this volume as an excellent read.
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