THE FAST GUN
- JT Edson -
A classic western with a galactic twist...go ahead and use that as a book blurb for this book!
The story has a very standard 'western' start - some drunk drifters looking for trouble lay their hands on a lady! Bad move because out of the crowd comes an unassuming cowboy to save the day. This kind-hearted cowboy, Dusty, takes on all three and whoops 'em. From there we have a quick draw gun fight that Dusty wins. Then he meets up with the lady and her companions for a trek across the country, fighting off the 'bad guys' along the way. Soon enough Dusty and this lady fall in love.
Here is where the galactic twist comes in.
Turns out this lady and her crew are aliens from another planet that have come to study earth. No matter, they still manage to get married and live happily ever after...until she leaves and Dusty is left with only the memories. Which he thinks may be just a dream.
Quite a mash up of genres eh?
It did work though. Edson managed to squash the two story lines together seamlessly. He did drop hints right from the beginning which made the alien twist come as no surprise later on.
To me it did seem, I don't know, weird. I'm a western fan and a sci-fi fan, but, blending them up like a smoothie just didn't leave a nice taste in my mouth. On the bright side, it is good fodder for 'strangest book you've ever read' kind of conversations. So, I am glad I read it.
This was the first JT Edson I've read, just happened to pick up this book at the fill a box for $5 sale because it had a western cover. Turns out Edson is known for these type of strange mash up books.
What I did find very funny was the name of the hero - Dusty.
Dusty is my fake name. The name I give when I go to Starbucks and they ask to put a name on the cup. I tell 'em, "Dusty".
They have never questioned it, so I assume I must look like a Dusty. I'll take that as a compliment.
RATING : READ