And Union No More

A Novel

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
255 Pages
Reviewed on 03/22/2023
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Essien Asian for Readers' Favorite

President Pierce's signing of the Kansas-Nebraska Act into law sets off a chain reaction of events that pits slavers and abolitionists on a collision course as both parties push to populate the new territory of Kansas before it gains statehood in the Union. Monty Tolliver seeks redirection in his life having left politics recently and heads to Kansas to play his part in the struggle. At the same time, Robert Geddis seeks a name for himself as a news reporter in the same location. As tensions rise, vicious murders occur in the territory. Monty pushes to get to the bottom of the crimes before these lead to an all-out war while Robert aids the former congressman but it seems an incident from their past may hold the key to solving this mystery before time runs out on them in Stan Haynes' And Union No More.

Stan Haynes uses a turning point in the evolution of America as the template for this thrilling adventure. His storyline infuses actual flashpoints in history in such a fluid manner that it is practically impossible to tell them apart. The characters are unique in every sense of the word as Monty's upright approach to carrying out his assignments is evidenced in his dealings with all comers especially when the odds are not in his favor. The subplots flow naturally and fit into the overall story arc like cogs on an effective wheel, especially that of Dolores, which gives the Underground Railroad a human face. What I liked the most about this story is the way Haynes uses his unique approach to storytelling to create an evenly-balanced narrative where you can sympathize with the motivations of the principal characters on both sides of the divide. I daresay And Union No More is a story without comparison in its genre.