Robert B. Parker OmnibuseBook
New Mexico Territory, 1882: two itinerant lawmen walk their horses down the long,shale-scattered slope into the frontier town of Appaloosa. Below them, lies rancher Randall Braggs' new kingdom, but Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch are here to restore the rule of law. They've done it before, they know what to do only too well: shoot quick, shoot clean, reload. But they aren't the only new arrivals in town. Mrs Allison French has stepped off the train with only a dollar to her name, a keen sense of survival and a good eye for a strong man. Finding one isn't going to a problem - Appaloosa is full of them: Cole, Bragg, Hitch. The problem is that Allie French isn't afraid to hedge her bets... and that Virgil Cole's heart isn't as steady as his gun hand.
The dust has yet to settle in the new frontier town of Resolution. It's barely even a town: a general store, a handful of saloons and a run-down brothel for the workers at a nearby copper mine. No sheriff has been appointed, and gunslingers have taken control. Amid the chaos, itinerant lawman Everett Hitch has created a small haven of order at the Blackfoot Saloon. Charged with protecting the girls who work the back room, Hitch has seen off passing cowboys and violent punters - though it's his scheming boss, Amos Woolfson, who stirs up the most trouble. When a greedy mine owner threatens the local ranchers, Woolfson ends up at the centre of a makeshift war. Hitch knows only too well how to protect himself, but with the bloodshed mounting, he's relieved when his friend Virgil Cole rides into town. In a place where justice and order don't yet exist, Cole and Hitch must lay down the law - without violating their codes of honour, duty and friendship.
Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch rescue Allie French, Virgil's former sweetie who ran off to become a prostitute, and head to Brimstone, south Texas. The two gunmen sign on as deputy sheriffs, but Brimstone fails to provide a quiet respite. A mysterious Indian is killing locals, and a brutal saloon owner and corrupt preacher are headed for a showdown...