The year is 1872. Twelve-year-old Matthew Wilcox leads a charmed life on his family's sprawling ranch in Washington Territory until a series of tragic events leave him orphaned and in the clutches of a vicious band of outlaws. Threatened by the gang leader's perverted cousin, Top Hat, Matthew also faces Indian attacks, dangerous wildlife, and a deadly snowstorm. He survives but burns with an overwhelming hunger for revenge.
Thirteen years later, Matthew - now a Spokane County sheriff - realizes that Top Hat is riding again with a new gang called the Mad Hatters. It means risking his friends, his family and the love of a good woman, but Matthew must find the man who destroyed what he once loved most in the world. To that end, he and his posse venture into Idaho gold country to capture the Mad Hatters.
Top Hat, however, has a different idea. He turns the tables, heading to the sheriff's hometown of Granville and going after everyone Matthew holds dear.
What follows will haunt Sheriff Wilcox for the rest of his life as he confronts the hatred, vengeance and retribution buried deep in his own soul. Matthew will do anything, though, to put an end to A DEADMAN'S LAMENT.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite Settling an old score held Matthew Wilcox in a haunting grip that prevented him from love or finding peace in Deadman’s Lament. Linell Jeppsen unravels the story of a boy who lost his parents and his home at an early age and then found a new home and developed a strong bond with the daughter of the family that took him in. The French couple who had taken him in and loved him as their own were gunned down by a ruthless killer called Top Hat. His childhood sweetheart was stolen away by a Nez Perce chief who had been tracking down Top Hat and had run across the party and killed three men who had been decent to the young boy. Seeing strong medicine in the boy, Redbird let him live and Mattie continued forward, fighting to survive. Finally found by his uncle, Mattie grows to become Sheriff Matthew Wilcox and sets out on the trail to exact vengeance on Top Hat and put his haunting to rest. Linell Jeppsen has followed along in the shadows of some of the great Western writers of the past and delivered a solid story in Deadman’s Lament. The classic themes of good overcoming evil and survival through enduring fortitude, as well as romance, are well formed in this action-filled story. Plenty of emotion and the sense of doing right draw the reader into a deep empathy with the hero and keep you on the edge of your seat as you watch the struggle unfold for a young man fighting overwhelming odds against a strong and cunning enemy. Full of action and tragedy, yet revealing the dogged fortitude of the western spirit, Deadman’s Lament will send you on a wild ride where guns are blazing and good men will stand straight and tall in the name of justice.