The Law of Moses by Kwen D. Griffeth introduces us to young Sam Cardiff. When Sam arrives home to his small town in upstate New York, after two years away at Teacher’s College, he has his future life all planned and in front of him. He plans to marry the girl he’s sweet on, settle down and have children while practicing his profession. Opposed to the Civil War that has broken out between the States, Sam has absolutely no intention of becoming involved. When his younger brother Luke, joins the Union Army, Sam’s mother begs him to go with him and keep an eye on his brother. After a series of personal tragedies, we flash forward to the new iteration of Sam Cardiff, who now calls himself Sam Moses. He has spent over twenty years as a tough, no-nonsense gunslinger and occasional Marshall in many western towns. A bad-tempered loner who seems to have a death wish, we wait to see if Sam’s heart of stone can be melted by the people of the small town he is now Marshall of.
I loved this story of an upright man of honour, with a past that continually weighed him down. Sam Moses was a complex character and was beautifully presented by Griffeth. The writing in The Law of Moses was simple and uncomplicated, which was more than could be said for the characters within the story. I’m not usually a reader of Westerns, but this book has changed my mind somewhat. I found myself drawn to the irascible Sam and his unintentional good heart. Even when he wanted to be mean, he somehow found a way to not be so. This is the first in a series of books based on Sam and his love interest Laura. The author has done a fantastic job of exciting me, as a reader, to want to find out what happens next in this story. An excellent read and one I enjoyed tremendously.