The Civil War may be over, but in this thrilling historical novel, the battle for the West is only just beginning.
Dakota Territory, 1866. Following the murders of a frontier fort’s politically connected sutler and his wife in their illicit off-post brothel, Lieutenant Martin Molloy and his long-suffering orderly, Corporal Daniel Kohn, are ordered to track down the killers and return with “boots for the gallows” to appease powerful figures in Washington. The men journey west to the distant outpost in a beautiful valley, where the soldiers inside the fort prove to be violently opposed to their investigations.
Meanwhile, Irish immigrant brothers Michael and Thomas O’Driscoll have returned from the brutal front lines of the Civil War. Unable to adapt to life as migrant farm laborers in peacetime Ohio, they reenlist in the army and are shipped to Fort Phil Kearny in the heart of the Powder River Valley. Here they are thrown into merciless combat with Red Cloud’s coalition of Native tribes fighting American expansion into their hunting grounds. Amidst the daily carnage, Thomas finds a love that will lead to a moment of violence as brutal as any they have witnessed in battle―a moment that will change their lives forever.
Blending intimate historical detail and emotional acuity, Wolves of Eden sets these four men on a deadly collision course in a haunting narrative that explores the cruelty of warfare and the resilience of the human spirit.
An Amazon Best Book of November 2018: Kevin McCarthy’s Wolves of Eden is a riveting fusion of mystery, historical fiction, and western. The setting is post-Civil War in the Dakota Territory, where the U.S. Army has established forts and its soldiers’ time is mostly spent fighting the Native Americans whose land they keep poaching. McCarthy’s characters come alive on the page, particularly his narrators: the long-suffering and quite clever Corporal Daniel Kohn, and Irish immigrant Michael O’Driscoll who, along with his brother Thomas, re-joined the army when they ran out of options. After a politically connected brothel owner and his wife are murdered outside Fort Phil Kearney, Corporal Kohn, along with his superior, a drunk Lieutenant named Molloy, are sent to find the killer—or at least “a neck for the noose” to appease their bosses in Washington. When the story begins, O’Driscoll is being held prisoner for the crime, and his narrative of events at the fort is told in a unique, endearing voice. McCarthy’s novel made me laugh, cry, and cringe, while my heart swelled with affection for the O’Driscoll brothers, Corporal Kohn, and even the flawed Lieutenant. The hideousness of war, bonds of soldiers and brothers, and a crime no one really wants solved, pulled me headlong into a story I couldn’t wait to share. –Seira Wilson, Amazon Book Review
“A fine amalgam of historical fiction, western, and thriller.”- Booklist
“A riveting and propulsive mystery.”- Publishers Weekly
“A strong entry in the modern western genre, encompassing both historical accuracy and social commentary, wrapped in a well-told story.”- Library Journal
“Absorbing…. It’s the well-drawn characters and riveting scenes that make this novel memorable.”- Kirkus Reviews
“Kevin McCarthy is a fresh voice, and a keen one. This Irish thriller writer has ventured boldly into a new continent and a new history. His place is the American West in the 1860s, when the long, sad carnage was winding its grim way toward Wounded Knee. With this story of profound tragedy, his new readers will be many.”- Larry McMurtry, author of The Last Kind Words Saloon