Friday, December 28, 2012

#49: Massacre River by John Benteen

Gun-for-hire Neal Fargo is tasked to take a Chinese bride in an arranged marriage to her new husband at a remote Philippine stronghold, battling headhunters, revolutionaries, and other bad seeds along the way in John Benteen's Massacre River.

John Benteen wrote prolifically in the 60s and 70s, primarily in the Western and what is sometimes called Men's Adventure genres.  These burly novels follow a cold-blooded turn-of-the-century fortune hunter and thus probably fall more into the latter category (though the covers would often make you think otherwise).

I found this entry fast-moving and enjoyable, although definitely not nuanced in terms of gender and race as might be expected by contemporary audiences. 

I began and ended it over a snowy day or so from a big stack I got at goodbye prices at a local flea market.

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