Morgan Kane- Without Mercy
allegedly by Louis Masterson, but I doubt it
First: The version I read is a recent reprint from WR Films. They contacted me through my blog and asked if I would read and review this book as they are planning to re-release them all as eBooks and have movies to tie the books into. I said yes but Westerns aren’t my thing, and they sent me a free copy anyway. I won’t enter this version into the Goodreads database ’cause I don’t work for Amazon for free. Also, there’s no ISBN.
Second: The book is riddled with typos, misspellings, mispunctuations, and general careless editing. I wasn’t reading for editing, just turning down corners whenever I found a mistake on a page. 14 pages (out of 124) are dog-eared.
Third: The cover claims that the series was an international bestseller for Mr. Louis Masterson (a pseudonym of Norwegian writer Kjell Hallbing).
So, Westerns aren’t my thing, but I’ve read a few. Enough, say, to recognize a good Western written by a good writer. This reads as if it had been translated using Google, and I find it significant that there is no translator credited anywhere in the colophon. Actually, it sounds like it was translated by Google and then rewritten by a screenwriter. The publisher has Films in their name, leaving me to suspect all sorts of dark things. Primarily, that they don’t give a good rat’s ass about the book, but are just trying to drum up publicity for the next blockbuster. I care about books too much to approve of this shoddy effort.
There are a lot of breasts in this book, all belonging to very young vixens and temptresses who are forever arching their backs so their nipples strain against the fabric. The hero is steely-eyed, a quick draw, and a helluva card player. Sometimes he drinks. Sometimes he kills bad guys. He never, never falls in love. But those nipples, boy howdy, they haunt him. He can ride a horse, and climb silently into windows. Every woman he talks to falls in love with him for no apparent reason. He can sew up his own gunshot wounds by puncturing his own skin and tying it up with bits of his shirt.
I can sort of see the ghost of what might have been a book that, even if it wasn’t for me, might have been worth reading when it was new in 1971. But this version? No. Oh, HELL NO.