The real devil is the one waiting inside of you.
Drayaden Sinclaire lives by three rules: he kills when he needs to, never before; he always pays his debts, and he never draws his sword. But when a town mysteriously vanishes into the hot wind of the Desert Land, Drayaden's world is turned upside down. The search as to whom or what caused the destruction forces Drayaden to confront the very thing he fears most: himself. No one is safe and no one is ready.
"Saddle up for a fascinating mix of adventure and science fiction in this genre bending western filled with intrigue, airships, and rogues exploding with personality." - Jacopo della Quercia, author 'The Great Abraham Lincoln Pocket Watch Conspiracy' and 'License to Quill'
"Part Science Fiction, part dystopian, part western, Moffitt blends three of the most popular genres seamlessly in his knock out debut. Prepare to enter the world of Drayaden Sinclaire, an enigmatic warrior, the remaining vestige of hope in a landscape of prisoners, murderers, and the innocents caught between. Come ride with Drayaden along the burning desert floor as his world begins to come asunder and he must reckon with his past in order to face his future. As compelling as it clever, MOON TO JOSHUA, is a psychological page-turner that no fan of gritty fiction should pass over." - Duncan B. Barlow, author of THE CITY, AWAKE, OF FLESH AND FUR, and SUPERCELL ANEMIA
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In this incredible sci-fi western we meet the mysterious Drayaden Sinclaire a gunslinger who carries a special sword by his side that he has vowed to never draw and use no matter how much he might want to. Drayaden always shows up on docking day when the criminals and their families arrive by train to Desert Land to be let loose. There are factions known as cloaks that will pick their recruits among the criminals and leave for dead the others in the melee. The black cloaks are the worst. They would take mothers and children. The Safeport Regiment is the only other group there to save people. Them and Drayaden. At this particular docking day, Drayaden isn't doing so well. But Malcolm, the closest thing he has to a friend, comes to his rescue and they get a group of people onto a wagon and race to Safeport where from there they can get the people sent to safe towns in the area. But the black cloaks are on their heels and the two of them don't look like they will make it. On the ship, Esper up in the sky which escorted the prison train, Anya Claire Ragnarock, an officer, takes one of the crystillium rifles and uses the fire round to take out the black cloaks. Drayaden can see her from the ship and wonders why she did it. Commander Ressin, her commanding officer, understands, but still, has to report her. After Drayaden gets patched up by Rosalina, a woman he doesn't want to admit to caring about, and dodges another recruitment spiel by Nicholai Stone, the charismatic head of the Regiment, he goes to the bar in Northwall the last place before the desert and is approached by a woman who asks him to look for her husband and son who received a message to go to Joshua and haven't come back. She is willing to trade a place at her home for his services. In Desert Land people barter for what they need. There is no monetary system. Guns and bullets are hard to come by and crystillium weapons are unheard of. Most people use knives or whatever they can put together. Before Anya can be brought up on charges for what she did back at the Desert Land with the rifle, she and Commander Ressin have been ordered to go back to Desert Land to pick up Drayaden Sinclaire and bring him back to Toreth, the main city. They are told that he destroyed the town of Joshua and that he was part of a secret project under Special Operations Division and that he performed well until he fled before completing training. He is to be returned to them immediately. Resslin and Anya don't completely buy what Special Operations is selling but they have a job to do. Drayaden and Malcolm have traveled to Joshua to hunt for that woman's husband and son, but instead, find not a trace of a town. It has been completely obliterated. The only thing left is a set of large footprints. This is when Drayaden is caught by Resslin and Anya. When the Esper is taken over by the black cloaks and Resslin, Anya and Drayaden barely escape the sinking ship, they head to Safeport. Drayaden tells them that he and Malcolm are going to investigate the footprints and that they are welcome to come along. Resslin and Anya don't know if they can trust him or not, but they know help is not on the way. They are scared of Drayaden's sword and the power it holds for when he draws it he wants to kill everything in sight. You will not be able to put down this real page turner.
From Moon to Joshua (The Sands of Deliverance #1) by Matthew Moffitt is a book I won from LibraryThing. I liked the style of writing and the whole desert/western/steampunk feel. The harsh world is very harsh and this is not in the blurb so be warned. There is plenty of action and quite the adventure in this book.