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A Tale Out of Luck

Willie Nelson, Author, Mike Blakely, Author
Willie Nelson, Author, Mike Blakely, Author with Mike Blakely. Hachette/Center Street $21.99 (256p) ISBN 978-1-59995-732-6
Reviewed on: 06/09/2008
Release date: 09/01/2008
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Paperback - 441 pages - 978-1-59995-167-6
Open Ebook - 978-1-59995-176-8
Mass Market Paperbound - 256 pages - 978-1-59995-733-3
Compact Disc - 978-1-60024-495-7
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Country music legend Nelson and novelist Blakely (Come Sundown ) collaborate for this predictable western. When a rustler’s body turns up on the open range outside Luck, Tex., with “ghost” arrows embedded in his chest, local rancher and retired Texas Ranger Hank Tomlinson’s past returns to haunt him. Years earlier, three Rangers were killed by similar arrows, and many suspected Tomlinson at the time. News of the rustler’s murder brings the son of one of the late Rangers, now a state police investigator, to Luck with an eye to avenging his father’s death. Staying one step ahead of the law, Tomlinson races to solve the mystery and cheat the hangman. There’s a wagonload of subplots (an Indian war, a prized mare’s disappearance, an orphan searching out his parents, a barmaid’s love story), and while rookie novelist Nelson and veteran Blakely write convincingly of the Old West, the plotting is cumbersome, the characters familiar and the dialogue strained. Nelson’s legions of fans probably won’t mind, though. (Sept.)

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