Tired of being told what to do by the men in her life, Susan seeks the freedom offered in Wyoming Territory in 1889, including the right to vote, hold political office and serve on juries. When she meets Michael O'Brien, a young veterinarian, when she disembarks from the train in Casper, she decides to accept his offer to accompany her to Rawlins to file for homestead land.
Surviving a tornado in their wagon, she later meets Ellen Watson-Averell and her husband James, fellow homesteaders who operate a road ranch and cafe in Sweetwater Valley along the Oregon-Mormon Trail. The Averells are later hanged by greedy cattlemen who want their homestead land, and the couple is accused of running a rural bawdy house. Ellen "Ella" receives the name "Cattle Kate" following her death and is said to have accepted rustled cattle in exchange for her "favors," lies spread by the lynchers to rationalize their actions.
Witnesses to the murders disappear or turn up dead and the mystery and suspense continue as Susan and Michael flee for their lives . . .
The novel is based on more than 20 years of research and is available on Kindle at http://tinyurl.com/cgapmrn (print edition out later this month).