The summer of 1907 is beginning to settle on western Arkansas, and seven-year-old Jay Bird Joey Schwartz, resident orphan of a Ft. Smith bordello, has taken to spending his evenings in the National Cemetery, listening to the frogs and eating stolen pie. But when he tells the pretty ladies at home that he saw a fairy prince napping between the graves, and when the murderedThe summer of 1907 is beginning to settle on western Arkansas, and seven-year-old Jay Bird Joey Schwartz, resident orphan of a Ft. Smith bordello, has taken to spending his evenings in the National Cemetery, listening to the frogs and eating stolen pie. But when he tells the pretty ladies at home that he saw a fairy prince napping between the graves, and when the murdered body of one of Ft. Smith's most powerful citizens is discovered by the cemetery caretaker, Jay Bird Joey quickly becomes a witness in a complicated crime. Former Deputy Federal Marshall Oscar Schiller, the same cocaine-licking, nearsighted investigator who solved The Search for Temperance Moon, finds it odd that the sheriff's office is so quick to close the case and brush off Jay Bird Joey's observation - especially since the victim's mistress is nowhere to be found. Suspecting foul play, Schiller sets out in search of answers - and finds savage violence and the haunting interrogation of a killer....
|Title||:||A Spider for Loco Shoat|
|Number of Pages||:||482 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
A Spider for Loco Shoat Reviews
page 247 quote:"Pool shooters know that when a cue ball is stroked and begins to travel about the table, it comes in contact with other balls and sends them on their course ... that initial energy ... balls going in all directions ..."You might compare the entire United States of America in 1907 to such a pool table, where all sorts of energy in the form of information was clicking and clacking along the railroad rights-of-way, or along the telegraph wires, or along the telephone lines, looking for something to kiss no matter where it might be, near or far."**7/7/17 - Starting a re-read ... wanted to search for a reference, retired librarian play ... found a blog with some helpful links. Noticed one about frontier/western mysteries.http://therapsheet.blogspot.com/2007/...http://www.januarymagazine.com/featur...**copied and pasted from "KIRKUS REVIEWThe killers who leave a naked corpse on an Arkansas River bank in the spring of 1907 lead legendary lawman Oscar Schiller a merry chase through Indian Country and beyond, in another delightful period piece from Jones (Shadow of the Moon, 1996, etc.). Schiller (last heard from in The Search for Temperance Moon, 1991) has not gone gently into the good night of retirement, so he's quick to take an uninvited hand in the mysterious murder of Gerald Wagstaff, a prominent Fort Smith businessman. After determining that there's more to the case than Sheriff Leviticus Tapp (a Dartmouth man who bears frequent witness to the strength of his religious faith) would have the public believe, the Waspish ex-federal marshall wangles a carte blanche commission from the local US Attorney. With the help of an Osage (aptly named Joe Mountain), Schiller noses about his old stomping ground, the Oklahoma Territory, now in the early stages of a crude-oil boom. While prowling the rapidly changing frontier, he sustains a gunshot wound, but not before he learns that the dead man had masterminded a lucrative scare that involved selling bootleg drilling equipment and holding large American Express under false names. From a half-witted outlaw, Schiller gets a line on Lota Berry, Wagstaff's missing paramour, and back in Fort Smith, the dogged sleuth locates the hapless Lota's body at the bottom of a dry well. Her moonlight disinterment soon flushes out the principal plotters in a sorry tale of betrayal, coerced confessions, embezzlement, homicide, hypocrisy, and torture. At the close, the culpable pay varied prices for their crimes, and the quirky Schiller makes an effort to adapt to a city overtaken by modern conveniences--automobiles, for example, electricity, and the telephone. Entertaining fare expertly set in a turning-point of American history, from a prolific old pro whose oeuvre bears consideration as a national treasure.
A Spider for Loco Shoat is an engaging and entertaining Western. Author Jones takes a creative approach to the genre, but in doing so often goes over the top and most of the typical tropes are followed.
This is another fine "late-era" western (set in 1907 in Ft. Smith).. The hanging judge is gone and Oscar Shiller sits around thinking about the old days. A grotesque murder calls him out of retirement however, as he manages to obtain a marshall's commission and starts nosing about.The period flavor of this novel is about as full of flavor as the Lemon Meringue pies described therein. The reader is treated to a lot of neat details about clothing, new technology and its effect on the people, and life in a turn of the century frontier town. Even the mystery provided is pretty good, though I felt that the identity of one of the villains was pretty obvious from early on and it turned out I was right. Either I'm getting better at spotting the bad guys or writers have began to write more simplistic murder mysteries. This novel moves rather slowly, but I think the pacing was pretty close to spot on for this novel. The old marshall, who was moving a bit slower, and the dialogues and descriptions all created a nice bouquet for the reader. The challenge was not losing sight of the mystery.Oh, and the title plays an important part in the book, even though we don't meet Loco Shoat and his spider until nearly the end of the book. While the character's name is Loco-- and IS crazy-- the name is short for Locomotive. Yup, the names in this book provide period details that mate well with the story, descriptions, etc.
Audio read, western murder mystery. Fear of spiders involved.