Charley Flinn, otherwise known as "Mortimer," was the craftiest criminal in frontier California. Upon his release from San Quentin State Prison in 1863, Mortimer quickly made up for lost time. He formed a gang of robbers in Virginia City, led a prison break in Northern California, and became the most wanted man in the Bay Area. Boldly outwitting both the police and the press, including the young investigative reporter Mark Twain, Mortimer escalated to wilder and wilder heists. But when he fell for a devious femme fatale, Mortimer's crimes took a darker turn.
Matthew Bernstein paints the Old West in all its terrible glory, where desperadoes tangle with crooked detectives, bloodthirsty posses, and sultry seductresses. Throughout it all, Charley Flinn keeps up a breakneck speed, committing hundreds of crimes before his love for a treacherous woman and his own violent nature lead him to a fitting climax.
Matthew Bernstein is an adjunct professor of English at Los Angeles City College. He also teaches at Matrix for Success Academy and is a frequent magazine contributor. He is the author of George Hearst: Silver King of the Gilded Age.
"Enthralling and intriguing. . . . Readers interested in crime drama and the history of the American West will find the book appealing."--Jerry D. Thompson, author of Wrecked Lives and Lost Souls: Joe Lynch Davis and the Last of the Oklahoma Outlaws
Prologue. Shadow Man
Part One. Sowing the Wind Chapter 1. The Mortimer Gang in Virginia City Chapter 2. Mortimer at Large Chapter 3. The Wiggin Affair Chapter 4. Highwayman Chapter 5. Gilchrist's Scheme Chapter 6. Lovestruck Chapter 7. The Santa Cruz Treasury Job Chapter 8. Ringers Illustrations
Part Two. Reaping the Whirlwind Chapter 9. The Murder of Caroline Prenel Chapter 10. The Fall Guy Chapter 11. The Murder of Mary Gibson Chapter 12. Red-Handed Chapter 13. Captain Lees's Secret Plan Chapter 14. The Ides of March Chapter 15. Scalawag Chapter 16. The Far West Chapter 17. Thicker Than Water Chapter 18. Hanging Charley Flinn Epilogue. "Rather Have a Rattlesnake"
Glossary of Criminal Slang Notes Bibliography Index