My Calamity Jane by Cynthia Hand,Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows (The Lady Janies #3)
English | 2020 | Young Adult, Romance | ePUB | 5.4 MB
Hold on to your hats: The authors who brought you the New York Times bestseller My Plain Jane, which Booklist praised as “delightfully deadpan” (starred review) and Publishers Weekly called “a clever, romantic farce” (starred review), are back with another irreverent historical adventure.
Welcome to 1876 America, a place bursting with gunslingers, outlaws, and garou—better known as werewolves.
And where there are garou, there’re hunters: the one and only Calamity Jane, to be precise, along with her fellow stars of Wild Bill’s Traveling Show, Annie Oakley and Frank “the Pistol Prince” Butler.
After a garou hunt goes south and Jane finds a suspicious-like bite on her arm, she turns tail for Deadwood, where there’s talk of a garou cure. But rumors can be deceiving—meaning the gang better hightail it after her before they’re a day late and a Jane short.
In this perfect next read for fans of A Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, bestselling authors Cynthia Hand, Jodi Meadows, and Brodi Ashton bring their signature spark to the side-splittin’, whopper-filled (but actually kind of factual?) tale of Calamity Jane.
“I guess you’re right.” The first man laughed loudly. “Huh. She ain’t much to look at, is she? I can see why they call her ‘calamity.’”
Jane’s face burned. She should brush it off—she knew that—but instead she brought her horse to a stop alongside the bank and fixed the men with a stare. They fell silent.
What she wanted to do was spit. Jane was an excellent spitter, and it would be thoroughly satisfying to send a clean arc of spittle right onto the face of the rudest man.
“Jane,” came that warning voice behind her—Charlie, again. Gawl-darned Charlie, who disapproved of Jane spitting. It was bad for business, he always said.
Charlie spoiled all her fun.
So Jane swallowed down the impressive loogie she’d been working up (which we commend her for, as your narrators, but ewwww), cried “Yah!” and galloped ahead.
“You cain’t lose your temper,” Charlie scolded her later as they saw to the horses at the livery. “It reflects badly on the show.”
She nodded dully. “I didn’t. I won’t.” But she knew she probably would at some point. She’d never been skilled at holding back her temper, a trait she’d inherited from her hotheaded ma, God rest her soul.
“Folks can be mean as snakes, I know.” Charlie finished oiling Wild Bill’s saddle and gave Jane a sympathetic smile. “But at least they know your name. That’s good, Janie. That’s what we want. Recognition. Notoriety.”
Charlie was always working on the fame thing—how to get it, how to keep hold of it once they got it, how to turn it into profit. Sometimes it was easy to forget that being their manager was only a cover for Charlie’s true occupation: he was a Pinkerton detective.
(A little background information, dear reader, about the Pinkertons. By the time of our story, the Pinkerton agency was the largest private law enforcement organization in the United States. Pinkerton agents were mostly hired by businessmen to protect their interests, but they also served as bodyguards for Abraham Lincoln, spied on the Confederate army, and worked as “private eyes” sent to investigate crimes before we had the FBI. That last part brings us to Special Agent Charlie Utter, who’d been assigned to track the notorious garou known as the Alpha. Charlie’d been on the job for less than a year when he bumped into Wild Bill Hickok—who claimed to be retired from garou hunting but actually was an undercover US Marshal tasked with bringing down the Alpha. It made sense for the two of them to team up and start the Wild West show as an excuse to move from town to town, gathering intel. And the rest, as we like to say, is history.)
But the Alpha’s trail had gone cold months ago, and even though being Bill’s business partner was only a cover, today Charlie was all about the show. He pulled a tall stack of papers out of a box. “Be a dear, Jane, and put these up around town.”
Jane scowled. “It’s Frank’s turn.”
“Frank’s off with his adoring public, I’m afraid.”
“Simpering ladies, you mean,” Jane scoffed.
“It’s good for business.”