After penning seven successful novels, Midlothian author Robert Reynolds has taken his talents in a new direction by writing his first Western, just released the Black Rose Writing publishing house.
As a U.S. Navy veteran of the Vietnam era, several of Reynolds first novels were based on his experiences in Vietnam. He has also written a mystery thriller, “Thunder Bay,” based in his home state of Michigan.
“I’ve been in Texas since 1980 and I just decided it was time I wrote a book based in Texas,” said Reynolds, noting his experience of growing up and going to theater every Saturday to watch the latest Western.
“Sorrowful” is based in the late 1800s as a group of young men set out on a cattle drive from the Kimble Ranch near the New Mexico border. When a storm spooks the herd, calamity ensues, leaving two brothers behind to help the cook repair the chuck wagon. Needing additional help, the brothers head into the nearest town, appropriately named Sorrowful, where they encounter a group of trouble-making outlaws.
Without giving too much of the plot away, Reynolds weaves a nicely spun tale friendship, commitment, revenge and redemption as he carefully develops the characters, using his words to carefully paint the scene of the old west so vivid you could almost reach out and touch it.
The final showdown is set in the bad guys’ hideout in the Palo Duro Canyon.
Prior to the release of “Sorrowful,” Reynolds’ most recent book, “Thunder Bay,” is set in his home state of Michigan with the storyline focused on the discovery of a sunken ship.
“My family has always been avid readers and I always enjoyed reading and I always liked writing — mostly short stories,” Reynolds said. “But I always wanted to write a book. My first book, “Firing at Shadows,” started out as a rewrite of several of the short stories I had written about Vietnam. When I retired from the Army and Air Force Exchange Service, finishing that book became my primary focus.”
Following the release of “Firing at Shadows,” Reynolds said he began receiving letters from readers, mostly military veterans, sharing their stories from Vietnam.
“Receiving that feedback and interaction from readers has been the highpoint of my career as an author,” he said. “In fact, with their permission, many of those stories shared by readers ended up being used in my other books about Vietnam.”
Reynolds’ catalogue includes: Firing at Shadows, A Perilous Place, Settler, East of Nowhere, Sentinels in the Sun, Monkeys in the Sun, Thunder Bay, and, Sorrowful.
“Sorrowful” is available in available in paperback, Kindle and Nook formats online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million and from Black Rose Writing. The paperback version is available for $16.95.
While Reynolds wouldn’t tip his hand on the next project, don’t be surprised if it doesn’t take readers back on a journey through the old west.
The crafty wordsmith readily admits his passion for Texas — and the old west.