This wonderfully crafted novel begins near the end of the Civil War. With so many historical fiction works on the shelves already, its a breath of fresh air to read this depiction of a time after the war, of rebuilding and of the culture and mindsets that developed in our nation as a result of the war. The author quickly brings the reader to a time and place made not so distant by his exceptional skill for weaving descriptive imagery. The politics of this event in American history was quite interesting and seemed very real as if the author had been a fly on the wall at many of the closed door meetings that certainly occurred between military and government leaders. The characters were fleshed out and realistic. The sights, sounds and smells you would expect to experience if you were actually there, jumped off the pages. Aids and bodyguards to General McClellan, Oakley and McCade are very believable, realistic characters that are clearly destined to continue as main characters in the Renegade series and thankfully so. I am anxious to read more and learn how these men will change and adjust as they put their war torn history behind them.
Overall the reader is destined to go through a range of emotions as they read through this seemingly very accurate depiction of what life at the end of the war must have been like. I was glad to know this was a prequel novel before I started reading or I would have been very disappointed in how “quickly” the book ended. As a prequel, the ending leaves the reader wanting and anxious for the first edition in the actual series as it should. The author could have trimmed the book by reducing the number of adjectives he used, significantly, and still given the reader’s imagination what it needed to follow along and bond with the characters. Joe Prentis has crafted a painstakingly researched, well written manuscript that clearly paves the way for his Renegade series.
Book reviewed by Debra L Hartmann, Owner of The Pro Book Editor theprobookeditor.com and dlhbookreviews