Paradise Valley

Owen Rountree, Author Ballantine Books $2.5 (208p) ISBN 978-0-345-32041-4
In the surprising beginning to this western, a cowboy stands in a bookstore in turn-of-the-century Cody, Wyo., perusing a biography. The focus then shifts to the town itself, founded as a Wild West vacation spot for Eastern tourists. After the hints of an unusual, wistful adventure set in a vanished West, familiar genre themes take over. Cord and Chi, former bank robbers, become caught between a big, Ma Parker of a woman and a New England man who has come West to avenge the brother she murdered for his wealth. Because a dying friend asks Chi to intervene on behalf of the woman and her doltish, threatening sons, Chi persuades Cord to protect the woman. There are fist fights, shootings, a final faceoff on a one-man, one-horse bridge, and occasional strong details, but not enough tension and suspense to make sense of the blood-spilling. (April)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1986
Release date: 02/01/1986
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