Kings of Colorado: A Novel

Kings of Colorado: A Novel

4.5 29
by David E. Hilton
     
 

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A heartfelt portrait of a bygone age.

William Sheppard had never ventured beyond his Chicago neighborhood until, at thirteen, he was sent away to the Swope Ranch Boys’ Reformatory, hundreds of miles from home, for stabbing his abusive father in the chest with a pocketknife. Buried deep in the Colorado mountains, Swope is shrouded in legend

Overview

A heartfelt portrait of a bygone age.

William Sheppard had never ventured beyond his Chicago neighborhood until, at thirteen, he was sent away to the Swope Ranch Boys’ Reformatory, hundreds of miles from home, for stabbing his abusive father in the chest with a pocketknife. Buried deep in the Colorado mountains, Swope is shrouded in legend and defined by one prevailing rumor: that the boys who go in never come out the same.

Despite the lack of fences or gates, the boundaries are clear: prisoners are days from civilization, there exists only one accessible road—except in the wintertime, when it’s buried under feet upon feet of snow, and anyone attempting escape will be shot down without hesitation in the shadow of the peaks. At 13,000 feet above sea level, the mountains aren’t forgiving, and neither are the guards.

With twenty-four months of hard time ahead of him, Will quickly learns to distinguish his allies from his enemies. He also learns about the high price of a childhood lost. At Swope, herds of mustangs are trucked in to be broken by a select group of inmates. Once the horses are gentled, they are sold to ranchers and landowners across the Southwest. Horses come and go, delinquent boys come and go. The boys break the horses, Swope Reformatory breaks the boys. Throughout this ordeal, Will discovers three others who bring him into their inner circle. They are life preservers in a sea of violence and corruption.

But if the boys are to withstand the ranch, they must first overcome tragedy and death—a feat that could haunt them for years to come.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781439183847
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Publication date:
01/11/2011
Sold by:
SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
259,490
File size:
2 MB

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Meet the Author

David E. Hilton earned a bachelor’s degree from Howard Payne University in 1998. He wrote Kings of Colorado mostly in his apartment’s stairwell just after the birth of his first son. He spends his spare time either writing or training his miniature dachshund to run in the annual Buda Weiner Dog Races. He lives just outside Austin.

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Kings of Colorado 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
bookhimdanno More than 1 year ago
First things first¿I loved this book! I have worked in treatment centers of the mentally ill, the developmentally disabled and boys who are out of control. I have even spit on my meal to be sure that one of those boys in treatment didn¿t steal off my plate(necessary or your food disappears every time you take your eyes off the plate.) This book captured the pain and hurt you see in those kids eyes. Broken homes, drug and/or alcohol abuse, physical/emotional abuse, gang life, the list goes on and on and you can see the need for love and acceptance in each of their faces. This book broke my heart and yet it was life affirming at the same time. A bit of Stand By Me, a bit of Lord of the Flies, a bit of what every teenager goes through and a bit of life as we all know it. The story comes to life in your head so full of color that it is hard to believe that this is a debut novel for this author. It is beautifully written and so full of life. I can¿t wait to see what else David comes out with in the future. Since this is about teen boys in treatment for crimes, it has language and adult situations you would expect. I loved this book and would give it 5 stars, but that to me means that it is a must read for everyone and this one may not be for everyone. I personally loved this story and I hate to cry, I refuse to watch a movie if someone dies because I hate to cry that much. But I cried and cried, I laughed and my heart shattered during my journey through these pages. What an extraordinary book this one is. Relationships are what we have in this life that are truly ours, embrace those you care about today. This is a story that means more than just the words on the pages, it gives you things to think about. It makes you thankful for what you have in this life and it affirms what you hold most important. This is a book I will be keeping to read again and for my kids to read.
Russell Ashby More than 1 year ago
This book cuts to the chase early and doesnt let up to the last page. very good ending also!
mggl More than 1 year ago
A blast out of nowhere
agoodlife More than 1 year ago
Very well written, interesting characters and story. I had to find out what happened but I did not enjoy the book, the story is too dark and tragic for my taste.
Gina321 More than 1 year ago
This Novel was certainly a page turner! The story line and setting brought you into the scene. I love it when an author can bring you to a different place like you are watching a movie. Very well done David Hilton, so glad I chose your novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Astonishing. 
shealy03 More than 1 year ago
Good, solid reading
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book draws you in from the very beginning. Very hard to put down once started. Some graphic violence, but very good reading. Held my attention the entire time. Very well written.
Eric Purcell More than 1 year ago
I've had few books that had me feeling such dramatic swings of emotion while reading. Couldn't put it down...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It has been a while since I have read a book that I really enjoyed. It wasn't sappy to be sappy and the charachters emotions and behaviors seemed real. I figured there would be some disturbing parts and of course there were. There were a couple of laugh out loud moments and there was a part at the end that basically made me cry. I would definitely recommend and certainly would read anoher of Hilton's books.
Carolyn Clingman More than 1 year ago
Couldn't put it down! Very well done!
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