The Clockwork Cowboy by J. Steven York

Image result for westward weird book cover

Title: The Clockwork Cowboy
Author: J. Steven York
In: Westward Weird (Martin H. Greenberg & Kerrie Hughes)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Cyborgs, Weird western, Wild west
Dates read: 5th November 2020
Pace: Fast
Format: Short story
Publisher: Daw Books
Year: 2012
5th sentence, 74th page: Which was true.

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In the middle of the desert is a town where everyone just wants to be free. But it’s a town with a difference – it’s colonised by free automatons. And all they want is to be left alone.


I thought that this was a great short story that emphasised the fight for survival and freedom. Which, considering all of the Western themed stories I’ve been reading lately seems to be a bit of a theme. A great theme though. Particularly when this is combined with automatons and science fiction…

This was a wonderfully intense and brilliant short story. I was hooked from the very beginning and found it difficult to look away. Probably lucky that this was a short story, because my productivity would have gone down the drain if this was any longer. At least being so short, I was able to be fully immersed without jeopardising all of the adult things that I needed to be doing…

The cruel turning on the lead character in this story at the end was a little heartbreaking. After all, the saviour is then spurned. And finds himself an outcast when all he did was save everyone…

<- Showdown at High MoonBlack Train ->

Image source: Amazon

3 thoughts on “The Clockwork Cowboy by J. Steven York

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