Friday, May 25, 2012

Writing and Writers: Michael McGarrity

Writer’s Block airs every Tuesday, at 9 a.m. MST on KFUN/KLVF, streaming live at 


McGarrity Captures the Old West With Compelling Characters

The best part of Writer's Block is talking to storytellers like Michael McGarrity, whose commitment to writing well is evident in his Kevin Kerney series, and in his latest release, Hard Country. This first book in a trilogy of historical novels about the Kerney family begins in 1875 with the horrific death of John Kerney's wife while giving birth to his son, Patrick, and the violent deaths of his brother and nephew. Circumstances force John to leave the child in the care of his dead brother's widow, a woman who he believes will take care of the infant and keep him safe. Unfortunately – as is often true in life when tragedy happens – she can barely take care of herself.

Hard Country is a well-researched saga of the life and times of the old west and the birth of New Mexico. Historic events are a backdrop to the tale of John Kerney and the son whose trust he never gains. When they are reunited Patrick fights settling in and turns his rage and disillusionment on those closest to him. The boy's life is shaped by cruelty in his early years, hardship, survival in the midst of nature's brutal forces, personal loss and an inability to trust. 

McGarrity transports the reader to the dusty trails and developing towns of an expanding country. Whether you like history, family drama or just reading a great book, Hard Country is the book for you. The wild west is portrayed with heart, realism and respect for an era during which survival was a way of life.

In our May 22 radio interview it came through loud and clear that writing a historic trilogy is a challenge Michael is ready and willing to take on. Attention to detail assures the bold panorama of the land is drawn as carefully as the compelling human characters. McGarrity breathes life into the past and helps us see it as it was. It is a gripping story from page one right through to the end.

About the author: Michael McGarrity turned to writing following a successful career in criminal justice and is the author of 12 Kevin Kerney novels. He lives in Santa Fe, NM where he is currently working on the second book in the Kerney family trilogy. For more information go to his website.

Hard Country is published by Dutton, a member of Penguin Group (USA), and is available in Las Vegas, NM at Tome on the Range.
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