Wyoming Territory, 1870.
Elijah Carter is afflicted. Most of the townsfolk of South Pass City treat him as a simpleton because he’s deaf, but that’s not his only problem. Something in Elijah runs contrary to nature and to God. Something that Elijah desperately tries to keep hidden.
Harlan Crane, owner of the Empire saloon, knows Elijah for what he is—and for all the ungodly things he wants. But Crane isn’t the only one. Grady Mullins desires Elijah too, but unlike Crane, he refuses to push the kid.
When violence shatters Elijah’s world, he is caught between two very different men and two devastating urges: revenge, and despair. In a boomtown teetering on the edge of a bust, Elijah must face what it means to be a man in control of his own destiny, and choose a course that might end his life . . . or truly begin it for the very first time.
I wept for Elijah and his inner monologue had me warring between wanting to hug him and shake him. His lack of self worth broke my heart, if only Elijah believed what Dr. Carter would tell him instead of what the likes of Harlan Crane or his boss, Dawson would shout at him. The story is so well written that even if you're not a fan of westerns you'll enjoy this one. Then you throw in Grady Mullins to the mix and this story suddenly has everything. This truly is a story of the good, the bad, and the ugly. Sweetwater is the first thing by Lisa Henry that I've read but it won't be the last.
I like to tell stories. Mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters. They gotta work for it though. No free lunches on my watch.