Sunday, January 20, 2013

Book Review: The Shopkeeper

The story for many who moved out West began with the decision to give up a life they had always known.  Some left the plows behind.  Others left New England factory jobs.  In the Shopkeeper by James D. Best, Steve Dancy leaves behind his life as a "shopkeeper" to head West.  Along the way he got more adventure than he bargained for, and all of it he keeps a record of in his journal.

Dancy takes up residence in a dangerous Nevada town controlled by a shady owner of the silver mines and smelter plants in the region.  In fact, this rough character basically owns the town and is willing to go to great lengths to protect his monopoly.  He had no scruples when it came to murdering the competition.  He was known to hire thugs to do his dirty work.

When two of these thugs rape a young woman, Dancy, the former shopkeeper, straps on his Colt.  Did I mention the shop he had run back East was a gunsmith shop?  Find out what happens after this hard-headed businessman has had enough.

This is a compelling narrative and as good as the best of classic Westerns. James D. Best is a name to remember.


  1. All of Jim's books are excellent and well researched. As the term goes, they are hard to put down.

  2. Thanks for the review. The Return, A Steve Dancy Tale is now available.