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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
A Two Horse Town: A Kate Caraway Animal Rights Mystery is a sleuth mystery novel written by Kathleen Kaska. Kate felt she had no choice but to come to Southern Montana where Ida Springfield was waging a desperate war against the mayor and his cronies who had their hearts set on building a dam on the Pryor River. Water had always been a scarce commodity in this area known for its steep canyons and rugged places -- and its wild endangered horse population. Ida’s land was home to its own herd of horses. If that dam was built, the spring that fed her land would dry up, leaving the mustangs without a source of water. The National Park Service was all too willing to take the herd off of Ida’s hands, but they offered little more than the auction block and the threat that those wild horses would be sold to a slaughterhouse. Ida would die before she let that happen, and she was willing to take the mayor and his cronies with her. Nate Springfield, her great-grandson, was a student of Kate’s, and he had begged her to try to find a peaceful resolution before the standoff became an outright crisis.
A Two Horse Town: A Kate Caraway Animal Rights Mystery is a fast-paced and exciting story set in the Pryor Mountains of Montana. While this is not the first book in the series, Kaska provides enough background information for it to be enjoyed as a standalone novel. I was fascinated by those Montana mountain ranges and loved learning about the Pryor Mountain Wild Horses. Kaska’s characters are marvelous! Kate is strong, smart and willing to put herself out there to protect Ida and the horses. I also enjoyed getting to know Kaska’s feisty senior, Ida, her twin sister, Veda, and Karen, the diminutive Park Service worker who helps Kate. The plot gives the armchair sleuth plenty of puzzles to mull over as well. While this is the first Kate Caraway book I’ve read, I soon felt I had a handle on her background and was quickly immersed in the story. That said, I’m planning on going back and reading the first book in the series, Run Dog Run. A Two Horse Town: A Kate Caraway Animal Rights Mystery is most highly recommended.