by James B. Hendryx
introduction by Patrick Newcomb
Readers of James B. Hendryx’s previous books will have no difficulty in remembering Halfaday Creek on the Alaskan-Canadian border, or Black John, the one-man police force who metes out justice to a variety of dubious characters. For those who are new to these tales of the Northwest, we need only say that Halfaday Creek is the home of a number of outlaws who find it convenient to have a border to step across when the law appears, and that Black John spends most of his time keeping the “crick” clear of swindlers, gold thieves, unwanted wives, and cardsharps.
In this collection Black John evens up the score with a number of old enemies. On a trip “outside” to his boyhood home, he perpetrates a clever swindle on a too-zealous banker who once had caused trouble over his father’s mortgage; encounters his friend Cush’s third wife on the way to the “crick” to make trouble for her husband, and engineers the hanging of some high-grade ore thieves.
This is accomplished with Black John’s usual imperturbability and good humor, and the fact that he comes out a few thousand dollars ahead on each of the deals in no way lessens his moral stature.
Black John’s many fans will find him as resourceful and unpredictable as ever, and there is no slackening in the pace of life on Halfaday Creek.
Skullduggery on Halfaday Creek by James B. Hendryx contains the following stories:
- “Black John Goes Outside”
- “Cush’s Third Wife”
- “One Good Turn Deserves Another”
- “Evil Companions”
- “Murder on Halfaday”
- “Hanged by a Thread”
- “All in the Day’s Work”