Friday, February 27, 2015

Forgotten Books: The Trailsman 243 - WEST TEXAS UPRISING by Stephen Mertz


When I reviewed the new Stephen Mertz western Blaze! (HERE), I mentioned it was not Steve's first rodeo. That distinction, I believe, falls to West Texas Uprising, published way back in 2002. Near as I can figure, of the fifty-odd novels authored by Mr. Mertz, this was the first western. And guess what? It's a damn good read.
 
Yeah, I know there are dang near four hundred other Trailsman books out there, but this was my first encounter with the character of Skye Fargo, and I found him mighty appealing. Fargo's sense of purpose--and sense of humor--come through loud and clear, and the plot gallops along at just the right pace. A true Westerner himself, Steve Mertz has a firm grasp on the lingo and flavor necessary to make this kind of story come alive.
 
I must admit I'm NOT a fan of adult westerns. Though I reckon there've been several thousand of them published over the past 35 years, I've read only a few--mostly Longarms I knew to be the work of James Reasoner. My problem is, I think the notion of obligatory hardcore sex scenes is just plain silly. But I realize that without the sex, these series would never have been published at all, let alone live to approach (and in some cases surpass) the 400 mark.
 
The good news is that the books I've read, including West Texas Uprising, were great reads in spite of the unnecessary sex. Thankfully, those scenes are short, and in this case, Mr. Mertz manages to use two of them to highlight Fargo's character. I'm now on the hunt for Steve's other Trailsman adventure, Arizona Ambush.


7 comments:

Oscar said...

I've yet read many of the books in a long series. Sounds interesting, though.

George said...

I'll have to track down WEST TEXAS UPRISING. I've enjoyed Steve Mertz's other books, too.

Cap'n Bob said...

Alas, the series has recently been canceled. Do you have the number of the other Mertz entry?

Peter Brandvold said...

Well, I'll be hanged. I didn't know Stephen wrote any Trailsmans. I did, too, right around the time this one came out. I wrote four and then went onto 30 or more Longarms. Hmm. I wonder what other hats SeƱor Mertz has been wearing. Any Trailsmans, Steve?

Peter Brandvold said...

I meant: Any Longarms, Steve?

Evan Lewis said...

If Steve did any Longarms, he has yet to reveal it on his website. Stephenmertz.com, natch.

Stephen Mertz said...

I should have known Brother Brandvold was riding for the same brand! My loss, I've never read a Trailsman book but had fun with the two I wrote and was grateful for the work. Thank you for the kind words. But speaking strictly from a male point of view, is there really such a thing as "unnecessary sex?"