To Swallow the Earth

Winner: 2016 International Book Award, Laramie Award finalist, Literary Classics Seal of Approval

“The characters certainly are taking an adventure most of us would never know. You travel with them ... and you truly become involved in what is happening. It is suspenseful but also tender in some ways. Very well done." - Shirley Priscilla Johnson, Amazon VINE VOICE (top 1,000) REVIEWER

(Western survival/suspense, clean) Winner: 2016 International Book Award, Literary Classics Seal of Approval, and 2016 Laramie Award Finalist. What if you came home after a journey and your family was no longer there? What if someone else was living in your house, running what you used to manage—and trying to kill you? Could a beautiful woman be behind it? Wade Forester must stay in the shadows because, it seems, everyone has reason to shoot him. His father has disappeared, and his sister won’t speak to anyone. Patricia Laughlin is searching for her family as well. Few people gain her trust or approval, though powerful landowner Bridger Calhoun might be the man to do it. After a clash throws them to opposite sides, Wade must decide if risking his life to help Patricia is worth the trouble. Bridger must win Patricia’s heart, and Patricia must choose which killer to trust with her life.

Set in the historic Nevada silver rush, the writing comes from intimate knowledge of the era and area. Having lived off the land, Wilcox depended on his wit, grit, and strength—and that of his animals—for survival, just as these characters do. Wilcox and Beckstrand weave authentic detail and care for the territory and its creatures into an adventure that will make your heart pound and fill your lungs with the rarefied air of the old Sierra Nevada Mountains. Comes with additional short story. See the backstory on how the manuscript came to Premio Publishing here.

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Family friendly (ages 14 & up, diverse characters), 54,000 words, 200 pages, 5.25”x8” paperback, Latino protagonist, American Indian. Simultaneously published as A Sky So Big (New Adult mystery romance/YA western novel), also an ebook—soon a graphic novel and audiobook. Premio Publishing (signed books. Worldwide rights © 2015) Written by Ransom Wilcox & Karl Beckstrand (Mini-mysteries for Minors [multicultural/bilingual series]). LCCN: 2015937400, FIC002000, FIC030000, FIC033000, FIC056000, FIC059000, FIC027270, FIC022070, FIC027230, FIC027110, JUV001010, JUV002000, JUV028000, JUV029000, ISBN: 978-0692407974, ebook ISBN: 978-1311882387. Ships in 3-10 days, more for international

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Premio Publishing (worldwide rights 2015), Baker & Taylor, BN, EBSCO, Follett, Ingram, Mackin, Quality Books, Kindle/, Sony, iTunes, Kobo, Diesel, and select retailers. Written by Ransom Wilcox, edited by Karl Beckstrand. LCCN: 2015937400, FIC002000, FIC030000, FIC033000, FIC056000, FIC059000, FIC027270, FIC022070, FIC027230, FIC027110, JUV001010, JUV002000, JUV028000, JUV029000, ISBN: 978-0692436394, ebook ISBN: 978-1311882387


To Swallow the Earth earns the Literary Classics Seal of Approval.
To Swallow the Earth is a western mystery turned love story. This intensely thrilling novel boasts a healthy dose of action interspersed throughout.  With great skill and finesse, author Karl Beckstrand has brought completion to this book which was a partial manuscript inherited from the late Ransom Wilcox. Beckstrand’s mastery of the written word provides such tangible moments you can nearly feel blood splashing in the fight scenes in this dramatic novel, which is sure to get your adrenaline pumping. The story transports readers to the magnificent landscapes of Nevada, California ... Extreme shoot-outs, brawls, and challenges of strength and endurance are sure to keep readers on the edge of their seats. ... this is a book which we wholeheartedly recommend for mature young readers.” - LITERARY CLASSICS Book Awards & Reviews

“A lot of action, hair breadth escapes ... Well done western novel.” - Randy Johnson, Vine Voice (Amazon)

“This story held my attention. I loved hearing the descriptions of the old times. ... A story of man against nature, man against man, the growth of a nation, people, and the battles thereof all wrapped into an interesting tale. ...would make a great movie.” – Shirley P. Johnson, Midwest Book Review

“[Y]ou will want to grab this book. There is a lot of action ... a page turner [that will] keep you guessing. And the conflicts with Wade and Patricia might surprise you, as well. Never a dull moment in this read. ... so well written you can completely see what he is describing. You will enjoy this book. 5 stars!” - Sonja Nishimoto, reviewer

“This story—unlike any I've ever read ... A great book. It's an easy read ... full of action and suspense, while being delightfully clean. The adventure was realistic and the story unique.” - Darrin Webster, reviewer

“A good read for all western fans. ... The action starts with the first page and doesn’t stop ... from start to finish. The dialogue was done well. ... The characterization was good. ... the authors did it very well.” - Paul Johnson for Readers’ Favorite

A must read. ... I loved reading this novel. ... After reading the back cover ... my curiosity of which man might be on the front cover lured me. ... one of the two main men is the real bad guy; but which one—and will Patricia Laughlin find out before it’s too late? In this intriguing and realistic portrayal of the Western lifestyle I found myself drowning into the deepest part of the plot. ... Which man will keep? ... A romance ... stunning masterpiece ... an irresistible tale. ... Mystery, suspense ... A Sky So Big has it all. ... five out of five stars.” – Danielle Urban, Universal Creativity

“HIGHLY RECOMMEND it. Great story. Strong male and female characters. Real motivations. … hooks from the start and compels you to keep reading … (start to finish in one day). The authors have an excellent grasp of the time period, language, and frontier life. It is packed with action and suspense … you couldn't tell the good guys from the bad guys. … with twists and turns through the final pages. When you do pick out the protagonists from the antagonists, the story only gets deeper. … True, unselfish love of family … and the local Indians. …made me want to visit the locations. … Excellent detail. … Easy, pleasurable read. … A full-fledged western that keeps you turning pages. … not for young readers, as there are many violent … scenes, but there is no … adult content.” – Jodi Orgill Brown, author

“A fascinating tale that readers won't want to miss. There's adventure, intrigue, and danger ahead for readers everywhere. The characters are realistic and their actions are believable. The scenes pop to life, with such vivid descriptions. I could feel the intensity as the story built up with every flick of the pages. Someone was going to die. ... Who is indeed to be trusted ... I highly recommend ... The journey will be one that stays with readers forever. ... I loved reading To Swallow the Earth. Karl Beckstrand and Ransom Wilcox are talented writers whose stories will never be forgotten.” - Danielle Urban, Universal Creativity, Inc.

“[R]eminded me of a good ol' John Wayne movie—lots of gunslinging and broad sweeping scenery ... very authentic. ... The characters were believable and attractive; ... suspense through the whole book. ... I would absolutely recommend this book to those who love westerns, action, and a rip-roaring good read.” – Amazon customer

“I have read a few westerns in my time, and this ... story ranks ... with the best! The characters are completely believable and have depth. The storyline has perfect twists and turns that make sense and leave the reader utterly satisfied. I would definitely recommend this book!!” – Diane Sebra, author

“[A] lot of ‘classic’ elements ... the fun comes in how they, our heroes, get there. ... Wilcox, with Beckstrand's assistance, has woven an adventure that Louis L’Amour would approve. ... I read this with buying the film rights in mind. If I had the spare cash, the check would be in the mail and I'd be thinking about casting my leads. ... The writers tell the tale with good characters (real people, not 1950s Hollywood cowboys), fabulous scenery that cries out for ‘filmed entirely on location,’ and a plot line with as many switchbacks as a high-mountain sheep track. A short, easy read that will brighten up any evening.” - Phoenix Roberts

“In reading A Sky so Big found that the story was easy to follow with interesting characterization. Even though Westerns is usually not my usual reading, I discovered the book was entertaining and was pretty good. It is a book anyone could read.” – Amazon Customer

“Four and a half stars. It has been a long time since I have read such an outstanding Western novel! …
Multiple main characters are presented in an evolving form. Each are very well developed, and the reader will feel he/she are there within the story—the scenes are so intense and well described. … [I]n the early “Wild West” in Nevada and California, … [o]ften the “Bad Guy” conquered. Sometimes it is hard to discover who the real “Bad Guy” is! Such is the case in a portion of this tale. … [V]ery adventurous with continual action with a touch of romance.” – Lu Ann Worley

“Suspenseful, thoughtful & complex characters. … I typically read authors known for suspense such as Stephen King. This author grabbed my interest just as well as any Stephen King book I have read. … This story pulled me in, and I loved the twists. … I so appreciated that Patricia … was game for so many
life threatening situations.  ... I also appreciate [the sincere] portrayal of Native Americans. ... To me the most important part of the book is the fact that we all misjudge others … a wonderful message. … I highly recommend this book for all ages” – Brenda Daneshi

“R.W. has written a western of land grabbing, manhunt, and murder. The premise for the storyline is outright greed. One man kills many to start an empire. This is an excellent read for the genre.” – Eddy Rapcon

“5 stars. Fast, gripping story. ... With attention to detail, exceptional characterization, and realistic dialogue, the writing compels readers back in time to experience the interactions of these three people. ... Author Ransom “Doc” Wilcox, born in 1907, and having lived off the land himself, brings an authenticity that readers will appreciate. After Wilcox died in 1992, author Karl Beckstrand ... ‘honed the characters while preserving the original story’s action and earthy vernacular.’ Readers benefit from the combined creativity in a story that ... will keep them involved--as if contemporaries--until the satisfying conclusion.” - Angie Mangino

“Amazing. ... I became immediately and completely engaged in the characters, the heart-stopping plot. ... [B]eautifully visual. ... you feel like you are there. ... The action just never stops ... confronting outlaws, bounty hunters ... Grizzly bears, and more. They seem to constantly dice with death ... breathtaking. I ... couldn't wait to find out who would win. The final scenes were perfect. I would thoroughly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Westerns, but also to anyone who wants to read a fast paced, action packed drama full of believable and likable characters. Oh, and spectacular scenery!” - Chantelle Atkins

“I don't usually read westerns, but ... I'm so glad I did! Definitely a page turner! ... Interesting characters, well developed ... the way they interacted with each other and dealt with the twists and turns of the plot gave them a not so common depth. I loved how the story was woven with little bits of knowledge and interest about early western living in the Sierra Nevadas, making me sure the author was well acquainted with that life. That is very rare now days! ... a fun read and exciting adventure!” – Karen Felt

“I know what I enjoy—and I enjoyed this book. The characters were interesting and the storyline was compelling. Strongest aspects were the descriptions of the country (very vivid, I felt like I was there) and the fighting scenes (very well done and easy to follow). ...
“Fun, easy to read,” western. Captures the lawlessness and action of the frontier. I am not a big Western-reader but I enjoyed this book.” – Jill K. Fazio

“A quick read and great character development. The story had several twists and turns that keep you guessing ... who should you root for? Who is telling the truth? Historically, very accurate. If you want a good read to keep you engaged for a bit, this is a great choice.”

“I really enjoyed reading this. ... It's not the typical western. It was light, clean, fun, and intriguing to read. ... a quick read and provided wholesome entertainment even for teenagers. I really loved ... the setting in actual places. I would highly recommend this book to everyone!” – Nancy Brown

“This novel was the spark that ignited my newfound love of Westerns. Captivating characters in a rich setting. Great plot. I liked how each chapter left you wanting more, and I admittedly stayed up late a couple of nights just to see what would happen.” – Jason Alleger

“If you enjoy the rowdy, Old West, this will be a great read for you. Wade Forrester is a hunted man whose only crime is to defend himself from those who would kill him and take his land. Patricia Laughlin is the naive, pampered daughter of ... a malevolent scheme. Given that there is a romantic plot paired with the quest for survival, it is expected that they end up as a couple. What they overcome along the way provides the reader with a great adventure. ... If there were a sequel, I would read it.” – TN in GA

“I've read this twice, a jam packed and ingenious story with accurate ... descriptions of the ... Sierra Nevadas. ... Think Zane Grey or Louis L'Amour. There are some pretty awesome ‘special effects’ for a book, with amazing escapes! ... A subtle, sweet and completely clean love story in the background...just right!” - Susan B., Librarian, Odyssey Charter School

“Great western with lots of action! … excited to get … a book that was hard to put down for many reasons. It was jam packed with tons of adventure, which really did keep the momentum of the story going, but also the characters were really captivating. The way the author described the scenery was … connected to the action. … It feels as though the reader is actually there with the characters. …
from one adventure to the next: … situations where death is a possibility. … This book does not fail in delivering action, suspense, and love as well. It's the perfect combination for readers to enjoy. I highly recommend.” – Hannah McNalley

“... as I got into the book I found it difficult to put down to do tasks or go to sleep. I learned quite a bit about my beloved Sierra Nevada range around the Lake Tahoe area. I enjoyed reading this.” - Elaine Fales

“A high-adventure thriller. ... Having studied extensively on the history of the Gold Rush and Comstock Lode, in and around the Sierra Nevada, and the early settlers of those areas, I felt right at home with the authentic detail of the setting for this story. In my mind the author has great credibility for historical accuracy. ... a good quick read.” – Joe Lindsey

“Wilcox and Beckstrand put an exciting story together. It's an easy read and leaves you wanting to read just one more chapter before bedtime, so you're not left in suspense. Movies sugarcoat western gun battles, but the writing in this novel doesn't hold back on the true losses and difficulties faced when horses go down, as well as cowboys, and rifles aren't as easy to get to out from under an 800 pound animal. ... a fun read.” – Richard V. Price

“Nice character development. I knew I liked the protagonist right away. This book gives a glimpse into the Wild West and the grit needed to survive.” – Robb Abegg

“I have read a number of westerns in my life and this ranks up there among some of the best. ... The characters were well developed and the plot carried the story well. I will definitely read it again and recommend that others read it as well. It was a rather easy read and kept me engaged throughout.” – Chad Martin

“A wonderful story of adventure, grit and survival. Karl’s done an amazing job of beautifully illustrating this story through his words. I highly recommend it!” - Lindsay Condie

“I love when a book can draw you into the story and surround you with imagery. This book does just that.” - Renee L. Creighton

“This book was a thriller full of action. Although many of the scenarios were far fetched, it pulled my attention and I could not put the book down. I am not a huge fan of western movies, but the few western books I have read, I have enjoyed. The setting of being in Sierra Nevada brought back fond memories of traveling through the Lake Tahoe and Truckee areas.” – Teri Simpson

“This book is a fun, exciting adventure that you don't want to put down! ... twists and turns that make it so much more enjoyable getting to know the characters. ... I truly enjoyed the suspense and thrill that takes place in the mountain setting!” – Kim Barnwell Joe

“I loved this book. ... so interesting and fascinating ... read it in one sitting. The descriptions of the environment, the characters, the plot, and the surprises were such that I felt like I was right there in the action. ... I have read many hundreds of books. This is one of the best.” – Carol Nan Hess

“I grew up on Louis L'Amour novels. ... I have searched for a long time to find a genuine western that I could enjoy. I loved "Swallow the Earth." You quickly develop interest in the characters and the story. The book is a quick, relaxing read that I couldn't put down. ... just the escape that a western novel should offer. I highly recommend it.” – James (Amazon customer)

“Whew! What a ride it was! Non-stop heart-pounding action set in the early days of Nevada. The background has a palpable authenticity that draws the reader into the story. Recommended for anyone who enjoys the works of Zane Grey or Louis L’Amour.” – David A. Wilcox

“A fun, exciting, western thriller, with great themes of humanity ... had me hooked and not want to put it down. Ongoing surprises and twists had me constantly intrigued.” – Graydon Jensen

“This is a western mystery about two people searching for missing family, who clash in a during the Nevada Silver Rush. I let my 14 year old son read it first, and he loved it! Great for ages 14 and up. I especially liked the dialogue, very natural, yet lyrical. Beckstrand obviously did a lot of research to make it true to life. Kudos!” – Susanne

“Amazing ... fun! I've always loved John Wayne movies, and this book was reminiscent of my favorites. Gun-slinging, tasteful romance, stolen property, and family feuds, this story swept across the varied landscape of the Sierras. It satisfied my main requirement: I couldn't stop reading because I wanted to find out what was going to happen. I thoroughly enjoyed this classic western and would recommend it to anyone looking for a rip roaring read.” - Nancy Brown

“The action that supported and furthered [the] characters gave continued opportunity for the reader to learn to understand and to like each of them. The book moved quickly and held my interest from start to finish. To Swallow the Earth is a must-read for all Western fans.” - David Christensen

“An interesting western adventure that involved the good guys, the bad guys, and those who fall in love. Many men (and horses) die in the conflicts involving land titles and the money to be made by the elimination of heirs. Some surprises here and there too.” - TwoStory

“Fast-paced ... holds together well, and it was hard to put down. That is a mark of a good book!” – Ruth Thompson

“Readers expecting an old-fashioned Western adventure, with gunfights and outlaws and wild animals in an untamed frontier, will be very happy. ... the leading lady has quite a lot of grit. It moves quickly, and it kept me reading ... so clearly it did something right. ... includes a short story ... a fun little piece about a ranch boy's first love on four hooves.” – T. Weber

“Fun read full of high adventure in the Old West. Add a bag of popcorn and you're at the movies of yesteryear. Vivid descriptions of the action make the story come to life. ... I liked it.” - RaeAnn Merrill


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