Defenders of Beeman County by Aaron Allston

Published: 2013 in Rayguns Over Texas

Genre: science fiction

Setting: Beeman County, Texas, present day

Interest: I was provided a copy of the anthology and I’m slowly reviewing all the stories in it.

Summary: A federal agent comes into the Beeman County Sheriff’s Department to commandeer some help in investigating some anomalous energy pulses nearby. The sheriff takes exception to the Feds’ tone, leading him out into the desert and killing him. Turns out, the Fed is actually an alien in a human skin, and it looks like the aliens were about to take over Beeman County. Luckily, the Sheriff, his deputy, and his daughter all come heavily armed and are crack shots. They kill the aliens, knock down their ship, and post it all to the internet before the real Feds can get involved.

Final thoughts: An interesting, action-packed story, but the more I think about it, the more annoyed I get with it. For one thing, what’s the likelihood a local sheriff would lead a federal agent into the desert and then just shoot him in the head for being disrespectful? It sounds like the sheriff has done this many times in the past and there’s no indication that his area is under investigation. I buy that everyone has lots of guns and can use them in Texas (total stereotype, I know), but the tone was aggressively macho and pro-gun. I did enjoy when the Sheriff had to fight his alien clone, and then the Deputy questioned who won by trying to pull his face off. The introduction to the story made it sound like a Twilight Zone episode, which I can totally buy.

Title comes from: The location was Beeman County and the Sheriff and his deputy were defending it from anyone trying to horn in on his little empire.

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image or title to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!

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