Road to Reckoning: A Novel
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Date: February 2014
Duration: 6 hours 31 minutes
Twelve-year-old Thomas Walker has never left New York City. His father, a traveling salesman who earns extra money by selling Samuel Colt’s recent invention, the “Improved Revolving Gun,” takes young Thomas with him on the road. But even the possession of the world’s first true revolver cannot save them from danger, and what starts as an adventure and a precious chance for Thomas to spend time alone with his father soon turns into a nightmare.
With his father dead and no way to get home from Pennsylvania, Thomas must rely on his own wits, courage, and determination, as well as a wooden replica of a gun, to protect himself. Luckily, an encounter with a surly ex-Indiana ranger, Henry Stands, leads to an improbable relationship, and the two set out on the perilous pursuit of vengeance—that is, if they can escape the thieves who lurk around each trail, river, and turnpike.
In the spirit of The Sisters Brothers and True Grit, this spare, elegant, and emotionally resonant story conveys, through a boy’s eyes, the pain of losing a father as well as the fascinating history of how the birth of the revolver changed the course of violence in America. Road to Reckoning offers a window into the history of the American West and the heart of a boy yearning for love.