Rising Crow

Fiction - Western
424 Pages
Reviewed on 05/09/2016
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Arya Fomonyuy for Readers' Favorite

Rising Crow by KL Byles is Book One in a western series that features Jim Morgan, a compelling character that readers will love immediately. Morgan loves to keep his secrets and, of course, he carries with him wounds from his past, and these wounds are marked into his body and soul. Now he arrives in a town in search of fortune and is immediately accused of killing the livery man. Judged in a church and sentenced to be hanged in the morning, he begins to think about what he has to do with his life. Will he docilely walk up to the abattoir or will he use his unusual skills to get free? Set in the 19th century at a time when people loved horses and when the Mayor’s say was incontestable, Rising Crow has all the beautiful elements readers love in western novels.

First off, the characters are wonderfully sculpted and the mystery around Jim Morgan is very intriguing. Readers will want to follow this character through his struggles and triumphs. There is a certain kind of sexiness to his character that can’t go unnoticed, a unique kind of attraction. The plot moves fast and from the first page readers are introduced to the main character and a conflict that drives the plot. Rising Crow deals with a variety of themes, including a man’s search to make sense of his gifts, a passionate love, and heroism. KL Byles shows great imagination in crafting a compelling story filled with rock-solid characters, interesting themes, and a conflict that will arrest the attention of many readers. Rising Crow is an excellent introduction for a series that will be loved by fans of westerns, and Jim Morgan is the kind of character to journey with.


A mysterious, young man, Jim, seeking his fortune, arrives in a town where he promptly happens upon a grisly scene and is wrongly accused of murder. Acquitted at the brink of being hanged, he goes on to perform an almost superhuman act of heroism and we follow him as he reveals his exceptional abilities and his troubled past unfolds.
Sounds good, doesn't it? It is!
I spent a lot of time with this story. Jim is a great protagonist; scarred, skilled, principled, and hardened against pain, you want to keep reading to learn how he was made and watch him grow in his environment. The story is character-driven, highly immersive, and impossible not to believe. A really expertly-written piece of fiction, could easily become a movie. If you love a good, rough Western story laced with a dose of romance, it's a no-brainer to have this one in your library. Highly recommended.

Joe Corso

Rising Crow is a well written intelligent western with a good plot, and interesting and fully developed characters. This book offers plenty of action and more than a smattering of romance which should interest the female readers. As I got into the book I found the western story intriguing and interesting, while the love story in my opinion was longer and more drawn out than it should have been, but having said that, the book still held my interest. I think that K. L. Byles novel is a worthy first effort. I liked the clean, typo free, smooth flowing prose and found it to be a refreshing well written first effort..


This story had every element a good story should have. An strong plot, attention to detail, but best of all fleshed out, well-written and well-rounded character development. There’s an abundance of well illustrated scenes that really make you feel like you are right there in the story, and that's something I really look for in a good book. From the opening chapter, setting the tone for the entire work, to the end at which you find yourself pondering your own sense of justice, Rising Crow flows like a sparkling river. It is a great read, and is filled with dramatic and well-described moments that will stay with you for a long time.

This captivating and commendable work had me immersed from the beginning. The story flows from scene to scene with ease, and the author shows exceptional ability when it comes to storytelling. The writing style is such that I was drawn into the story from the very beginning. This doesn't happen for me very often.

It’s one of those stories that come along once in a while that makes you want to read it non-stop until you get to the end. Although this was quite a 'meaty' read, I must admit it took me a few sittings to finish it because of time restraints. I’m giving nothing further away here. And this, I hope, will only add to the mystery and enjoyment for the reader! A highly recommended read. Five stars from me.

I’ll certainly be looking forward to reading more from K. L. Byles in the future. Truly a great read and a debut that suggests great things for Byles future as a writer. Part two of this series, Roaring Crow, will be greatly anticipated.I received a copy for my unbiased review.

Roger Marchant

It's a page-turner, say no more. Reminiscent of an old American book, way out of print, "The Honorable Cowboy". Formative stuff when I was young.