Arkansas Smith, former Texas Ranger, rides into Red Rock on his white horse, no, it was actually a sorrel, to find his old friend, Will McCord, shot and seriously wounded lying among the debris inside his cabin. So the novel Arkansas Smith by Jack Martin (Gary Dobbs) begins and continues through its twists and turns, as Arkansas vows to leave no chapter incomplete as he looks for the dirty culprits who did this to his old Ranger buddy.
Arkansas fixes McCord the best he can and heads to town to find a doctor to extract the bullet lodged in McCord's belly parts, after his friend tells him that it was probably a feller named Lance who has been trying to buy him out, that did this to him. After a couple of chapters, there is a flashback that relates the touching story of how Arkansas got his moniker.
After the doctor leaves and tells Ark that his friend will survive, a female entersthe picture. And the plot thickens and the suspense is growing, because the woman is the daughter of the Lance feller, but appears to be willing to help McCord and Arkansas. And in a tightly woven story, the heroes carry on to the final meeting with Lance, who turns out to be a pyromaniac or some other type of maniac and justice wins out.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this western, the second by Mr. Martin/Dobbs, the first being The Tarnished Star, and would recomnend it without a second thought. It carries you right along, and before you know it, you've read the the whole thing and want more.
Arkansas Smith is a Black Horse Western published in Great Britain in 2010. I ordered my copy through Barnes and Noble and it took a long time to get it.