by Charlie Mac
February 16, 2014
Giving a new twist to an old story. In his first book, the author, Charlie Mac finds a way to bring home Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. After allowing people to think they had died in a ferocious gun battle with lawmen in Bolivia, with the assistance of Ms. Etta Place, they return to the U.S. to establish legal business ventures, start families, and live quietly as law abiding citizens. It's not until the secret journal of a very wealthy and powerful man surfaces, someone Butch and Sundance used to, um, have considerable business dealings with, that the excitement of their previous lives comes back to haunt them.
The plot is decent, character development more than adequate, and who wouldn't want to think that Butch and Sundance had survived, made their way back to the states and lived and loved along the way. Based on various accounts it's plausible and that makes it believable and that's crucial to any good story. Throw in damning evidence against someone rich and famous, a railroad that helped develop most of the country, and a well trained psychopathic mercenary and you could have the makings of a very good book.
I'm going to make some assumptions now. I think this is a self-published book, which, by definition, puts it in the vanity novel category. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Trying to get the attention of a publisher and have them take you seriously is pretty tough. This not being the first 'self-published' book I've ever read, I've noticed there is often a common thread or the lack of an important thread. The use of a quality professional editor. In this novel, there are items that come across as an after thought or just thrown in and the reader is left asking themselves, "Where did that come from?" Or, "Did I miss something?" And sometimes after considerable detail and build up, the climax was, well, anticlimactic. If I remember correctly, there was even one repeat. If a story is important enough to invest the the time, energy, and money to publish, in my opinion, an author should believe in it enough to invest in that professional that would catch the mistakes, make the necessary recommendations to flesh out the edges and make it a truly finished product.
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