Krista Reviews: Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

bowman-VengeanceRevenge is worth its weight in gold.

When her father is murdered for a journal revealing the location of a hidden gold mine, eighteen-year-old Kate Thompson disguises herself as a boy and takes to the gritty plains looking for answers—and justice. What she finds are untrustworthy strangers, endless dust and heat, and a surprising band of allies, among them a young Apache girl and a pair of stubborn brothers who refuse to quit riding in her shadow. But as Kate gets closer to the secrets about her family, a startling truth becomes clear: some men will stop at nothing to get their hands on gold, and Kate’s quest for revenge may prove fatal. 

Hardcover, 336 pages

Published September 1st 2015 by HMH Books for Young Readers

This was one of those stories that I refer to as a “travel story”. I am unsure if there is already a term used for it.

Kate is in constant movement from one place to another, meeting people, finding answers and running for her life. There is very little downtime and things are always in motion.

After returning home and finding her father murdered, Kate decides that she wants revenge. First she follows her fathers wishes by travelling to a friend’s house who has promised to take care of her. Upon her arrival she finds that the friend has also passed. Kate follows her heart and the trail of the Rose Riders to avenge her father’s death with a small crew of her own (even though they are more focused on obtaining gold than killing the most powerful gang leader around).

Kate is a very determined character that has one focus. At times she will say whatever it takes to get those around her to do what she wants so she can reach her goal. All the while, those around her have ideas of their own. At times a bit of romance comes into play and there’s a lot of character growth for Kate as the story progresses.

I can’t say that I loved Vengeance Road so much that it inspired me to pick up more westerns, but I had a good time reading it and would recommend it to those who enjoy historical reads. It’s a very wild west, horse riding, shoot outs, card playing roller coaster of greed and revenge. An action packed, plot driven story that keeps you on your toes and has a fun twist ending. I haven’t read a lot of westerns and this one was engaging, had a great plot, and I loved the ending.


  • Kelly Whitley

    Hey Krista!! I haven’t read a lot of westerns either but I thought this was cute and enjoyable for what it was. I’m glad that it brought diversity to the ya scene.

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