John Benton was one of the toughest men ever to wear a Texas Ranger badge. But eight years ago, in August 1871, he hung up his guns for good.
Or so he hoped.
Then young Robby Coles challenged him to a fight over some imagined slight to the boy’s sixteen-year-old girlfriend. At first Benton tried to laugh off the affair. Why, the boy was little more than a child. But rumors and gossip spread like wildfire through their dusty frontier town and soon enough the entire community seems to be goading both men towards a fatal confrontation neither one truly wants.
Benton doesn’t want to kill again. Robby is secretly terrified of facing the legendary gunfighter. Yet, with both men’s honor on the line, is there any way to avoid a duel to the death?
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Praise for The Gun Fight:
“He is legend, Richard Matheson, and The Gun Fight is the kind of story that made it happen. Here is a deceptively simple premise–how a lie can kill–and an unforgettable character, ex-Ranger John Benton. Matheson makes everything work just as he did in Journal of the Gun Years, which won the Golden Spur Award from the Western Writers of America.”
--Dale Walker, Rocky Mountain News
“Matheson has crafted an engrossing account of the frequently deadly consequences of mistaking vanity for honor.”
“With the possible exception of the modern woman’s romance, Richard Matheson has conquered every category of fiction in our time. With The Gun Fight, he has marked the American Western in its newest and most important phase with his brand. Raw, rough, and real, the book resonates with the long sure role of history.”
--Loren D. Estleman, author of Frames
“Written in the traditional Western style, this substantive story addresses several moral issues, and the rather illusive term ‘honor’ is made crystal clear . . . An action-packed, suspenseful tale.”
--School Library Journal
“The Gun Fight is another western triumph for Richard Matheson, to add to his Spur-winning Journal of the Gun Years.”
--Norman Zollinger, author of The Road to Santa Fe
“In just three days, gossip leaves a trail of wrecked lives, death, and life-long remorse. By the author of Journal of the Gun Years, this is a superbly written suspense story with a moral.”
“Richard Matheson packs The Gun Fight with enough real people, plot twists and authentic western color to make this the equal of his Spur-winning Journal of the Gun Years. This is a very, very good book.”
--Ed Gorman, author of Fools Rush In
“Any novel bearing the name Richard Matheson is going to be breathtakingly good. No one writes better.”
--Richard Wheeler, author of North Star