Reviews of Dark Fiction

Boon by Ed Kurtz, narrated by Joshua Saxon

Boonsri Angchuan seeks revenge. From whom will soon be made clear and when it is? You’ll want revenge too!

I went into this book totally blind, other than knowing it was a western. Joe R. Lansdale taught me that I could love westerns. Larry McMurty taught me that some westerns are so much MORE than just…westerns. Ed Kurtz has now taught me that westerns can be…LIFE.

Boonsri is a woman on a mission. Exactly what that mission is, is revealed as the story goes on. With her, travels a large man originally of German descent, but as of late, from Arkansas. His name is Edward and he drinks a lot. I mean, A LOT. Boon and Edward, (who is like the western version of Jon Snow, because she so often tells him how he knows nothing), travel together by horseback, by train and sometimes by foot. Their mission brings them through the states, (or territories), of Texas, New Mexico and San Francisco’s Barbary Coast in search of….well, you’ll just have to read this to find out!

BOON is like a huge tapestry, weaved out of life and what it was like here in the United States, especially in the west. Mostly? That life was barbaric. Immigrants existed to work for those in charge. Women existed to do the same. And those in charge? They were almost always men. White men. Many of them devoid of any humanity at all. That’s what the wild west did to most…it ground the good right out of them, until all that was left was inner beast; all urges, all primal, all survival based.

The savior of this book is fat, drunken Edward. Man of few baths and even fewer great thoughts. What Edward does have, though, is a moral sense of what is right. He has a sense of loyalty and some might say he often cares for others more than he cares for himself. And that is one rare thing in the American west of that time.

Joshua Saxon’s narration of kind, sweet, drunken Edward, brought him to life. Boon too! The exchanges between the two had me at different times, wanting to laugh and then wanting to cry. Sometimes both at the same time! (And isn’t that just the BEST?)

These characters, created and animated by the words of Ed Kurtz, and voiced by the talented Joshua Saxon, are going to be with me a long, long time. I’m not even counting the poor little girl, the mad judge of a small town or the evil man behind, well, everything. Together, all of them exist in my mind’s eyes,( and ears), and I cannot wait to rejoin the ones that survived!

My highest recommendation! Seriously, my HIGHEST!

Thanks to the narrator for the audio download of this book in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!

Boon Book Cover Boon
Ed Kurtz
Western, Dark Fiction
Crossroad Press
9 hours, 38 minutes

Boonsri Angchuan travels the trails, riding from town to town with her one and only friend, a portly Arkansan drunkard named Edward Splettstoesser. She has done nothing else for years, her only goal being revenge upon the one man who should have protected her but instead sold her and her mother into bondage. From Texas to the New Mexico Territory, from the filthy backstreets of San Francisco’s notorious Barbary Coast to the ghost town of a depleted placer mine, Boon and Edward navigate corrupt lawmen, hostile Kiowa, a mad judge, and countless gunmen aiming for their heads in Boon’s dogged pursuit of answers—and vengeance.

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