HERO by Boyd Taylor (Book #1 in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series)
Category: Adult Fiction, 180 pages
Genre: Political Suspense
Publisher: Katherine Brown Press
Release date: November 9, 2015
Tour dates: Jan 3 to Feb 28, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (Some slight cursing)
When budding historian Donnie Ray Cuinn stumbles upon an old letter in the musty bowels of the Texas State Archives, he believes he has uncovered the true story of Sam Payne’s valiant, or perhaps not so valiant, capture of Mexican leader Santa Anna during the Battle of San Jacinto. Cuinn’s findings are published in a local magazine. But the article eventually becomes fodder in the gubernatorial race between Democratic upstart Bob Braeswood and Republican favorite Sam Eben Payne V, the great-great-grandson of the Texas hero. Braeswood is intent on exploiting the past, while Payne will do anything to suppress it. In the ensuing battle, Donnie finds his beliefs, not to mention his relationships, stretched to the limit in the first novel of the Donnie Ray Cuinn series.
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I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.
Donnie Ray Cuinn is a history major who finds information in the archives when he’s researching for his thesis. What he finds is the true story of Sam Payne’s capture of Santa Anna and it’s not pretty. A magazine asks him to publish a story about his findings and that’s when Donnie starts having problems. Sam Payne V is running for governor of Texas and threatens Donnie and his family if Donnie doesn’t retract the article.
Although this story is about politics and history, it doesn’t get the reader overloaded with information of either subject most of the time. The Prologue is a little in-depth about the history of Sam Payne and the Battle of San Jacinto but it’s necessary for the story.
The characters are pretty well developed. Donnie is typical for some men his age except for him not being out on his own yet. I have a son who is 27 and one who is 28, and Donnie could easily fit in with the two of them. I like Lena and Cecilia who are both strong female characters.
Hero is a fairly quick read with interesting characters and a couple of surprises. There’s an unexpected twist near the end as well. I’m looking forward to reading the second book in the series soon.
Meet the Author
BOYD TAYLOR lives in Austin, Texas with his wife and their Havanese dog Toby. Necessities is the fourth novel in the Donnie Ray Cuinn series. In a former life, Boyd was a lawyer and a corporate officer. A native of Temple, Texas, he graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in government and an LL.B. from the law school.
Boyd’s first novel “Hero” was prescient in its story about fake news. His second novel, “The Antelope Play,” dealt with drug trafficking in the Texas Panhandle, an unfortunately accurate forecast. The third, “The Monkey House”, involved commercial development of a large green space in the center of Austin, all too familiar to Austin residents. Whether his upcoming novel “Necessities” predicts future events with the accuracy of the earlier books remains to be seen.
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