By Erin Bowman
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers
on November 7, 2017
Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Cover image and synopsis from Goodreads:
When Reece Murphy is forcibly dragged into the Rose Riders gang because of a mysterious gold coin in his possession, he vows to find the man who gave him the piece and turn him over to the gang in exchange for freedom. Never does he expect a lead to come from an aspiring female journalist. But when Reece’s path crosses with Charlotte Vaughn after a botched train robbery and she mentions a promising rumor about a gunslinger from Prescott, it becomes apparent that she will be his ticket to freedom—or a noose. As the two manipulate each other for their own ends, past secrets are unearthed, reviving a decade-old quest for revenge that may be impossible to settle.
In this thrilling companion to Vengeance Road, dangerous alliances are formed, old friends meet new enemies, and the West is wilder than ever.
I was really looking forward to reading this, since I read and enjoyed Vengeance Road in 2015.
I liked this book a lot! I really enjoyed that it switched between Reece and Charlotte’s perspectives (I do think I preferred Reece’s story), and that characters from Vengeance Road returned. I have read very few YA westerns, but after this I think I’m really interested in reading more of them.
Overall, I thought this was great: I loved the writing and I cared about the characters. The story slowed down a little at one point and I took a couple of days to get back into it, but then things really picked up at the end. And there’s a really good action scene towards the end of the book, which made me super tense and nervous for the characters.
I will say that while this is called a companion to Vengeance Road and not a direct sequel, I really think I got so much out of this book because I’d read Vengeance Road. I was emotionally invested in the story in a way that I might not have been if I had not been familiar with other characters and their stories from VR.
So if you liked Vengeance Road, I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy Retribution Rails as well! Definitely recommended!