Ed Gorman mentioned on James Reasoner’s blog that Clifton Adams had written five or six of the best westerns ever. Imagine my dismay at reading those words with the realization that while I had a stack of Clifton Adams’ novels, I’d never read one of them! Well, that deficiency has been rectified by my enjoyment of Clifton Adams’ Tragg’s Choice first published in 1969. Tragg is an aging performer. As a U. S. Marshal, he shot a desperado ten years before and then went on a lecture tour to cash in on his fame. But, after ten years, audiences have forgotten the desperado and Tragg finds himself looking for another profession. He meets Jessie Ross, girlfriend of a contemporary desperado with a $10,000 bounty on his head. Jessie tries to talk Tragg into helping her collect the bounty on her boyfriend, but Tragg wants nothing to do with it. A hired assassin, a crazed killer, and a lynch mob keep the plot of Tragg’s Choice unpredictable. Tragg’s Choice won the Spur Award in 1969 for Best Western Novel. It’s well deserved.