When Rosenda and Angelique Martinez waved their parents and brothers goodbye, as their family headed off to sell their 200 horses, to the Army in Fort Collins in 1898, little did the girls realise they would not return to them. Set upon and murdered by the very men, their father had hired to help them, the two sisters were suddenly left alone in the world. Rather than wallow in self-pity the girls, full of righteous anger vow to hunt down the five men responsible for their family’s murder. In Sometimes Trouble Comes in Two’s by Raymond Cook, the main problem faced by the girls, to their plan, is that neither of them has any experience in guns or gun-fighting. After hiring a passing gunslinger, they witnessed in a gun-fight in their town, to teach them the rudiments of drawing and firing a pistol, the girls are finally ready to begin their journey of vengeance and justice. Two females, with Colts strapped to their waists was a rare sight in Colorado in 1898 and Rosenda and Angelique soon draw plenty of attention from both those upholding the law and those breaking the law as they travel around the small towns, of early Colorado, searching for the five killers.
The thing I liked most about Sometimes Trouble Comes in Two’s is the two main characters Rosenda and Angelique Martinez who, as two strong female leads are not robbed of their femininity and their emotions by the role of “bounty hunters” that they have chosen to embrace. Author Raymond Cook does well to soften the harshness of the action and the violence with his two protagonists who display their caring, understanding and nurturing nature often in the story. The author’s style is very straightforward, simple and matter-of-fact, as the girls travel the roads and towns of frontier Colorado. In this sense it is a very readable story and could appeal as much to young adults as adults. The premise of two female gunslingers is rare and unusual enough in itself to capture a reader’s attention and Cook does a good job of telling their story. If the author’s intent was to show the counterpoint between the generally accepted version of the “west” as a wild and lawless frontier with the idea that the majority of settlers were good, simple folk just seeking a quiet and peaceful life, I feel he achieved his result. This was a satisfactory read, especially if western fiction is your genre.