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MICHAEL ZIMMER. The Poacher’s Daughter

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MICHAEL ZIMMER. The Poacher’s Daughter. Five Star Publishing. Hardcover, 497 pages, $25.95, www.gale.cengage.com/fivestar.

This is not your ordinary Western. The hero is reluctant to engage in gunplay, is victorious through happenstance more often than shooting skill, and is tortured by the resulting deaths even if justified. On top of that, the hero is a woman. “Rose of Yellowstone” is a masterfully crafted character, struggling with her lot in life and emotions even as she fends off hired guns determined to see to her demise. Zimmer, as usual, balances the gritty details of daily life with adventure and action, resulting in a realistic and enjoyable read that could have happened, even if it didn’t.