Simon and Felicity Ward have built a home in the wilderness. They have the first functioning farm in the territory, and they—along with their young son Peter—are truly happy. It hasn’t been easy, but Simon’s hard work in the fields along with the seeds they brought from Boston are slowly overcoming the short growing season and their homestead is the envy of the territory.
Simon is a kind man, one who would rather nurture the land than cause damage to another person, and while he is making a living in the wilderness he is still something of a greenhorn. When a British Lord claims the Ward’s valley for himself, the family has little choice but to leave everything they have built, or fight. While the Ward’s are out numbered, their odds improve when a young man named Zach King makes himself known.
Zach is the son of the famous mountain man Nate King—the lead character in David Thompson’s Wilderness series who has only a limited role in this title—and he is known around the country as a fellow who likes to fight. When he hears the Ward’s story he immediately volunteers to deal with the problem, and take care of it he does—he faces down a small British army, a sadistic girl, and the British Lord himself.
Wilderness #53: The Rising Storm is the first title in the series I have read, and it wasn’t disappointing. It is a twist on the traditional western—it is set closer to 1830 than 1880. It is all action, and will appeal to anyone who enjoys the standard fare of competent, fast paced storytelling that defines most series writing. It has limited character development, and an abundance of light-hearted violence, but the story is fun and what it lacks in originality it makes up for in pure adventure entertainment. If you like this kind of fiction you should enjoy The Rising Storm.