Macon’s Perfect Shot
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After publishing my non-fiction book, Adventures in Yellowstone (Globe Pequot 2009), I found I had lots of great adventures left over, so I created a 14-year-old boy to live them. Macon’s Perfect Shot is the result.
Fourteen-year-old Macon Josey must earn enough money so his widowed mother won’t have to give up his baby sister for adoption. He sees a chance when Uncle Bird Calfee offers him a job caring for art equipment on a trip to the brand new Yellowstone Park. Macon’s mother fears marauding Indians, boiling geysers and ferocious bears, but Uncle Bird promises her he’ll stay on routes that avoid danger, and he’ll teach Macon to shoot his father’s rifle. Macon learns to be a sharpshooter while he and Uncle Bird travel meeting colorful characters and seeing hot springs, waterfalls, and canyons. This new skill becomes crucial after Uncle Bird falls into a geyser and Macon has to figure out how to get his scalded friend home. The only way is to head straight toward a band of murderous horse thieves.
In “Macon’s Perfect Shot: A Yellowstone Adventure,” a 33,000-word middle-grades novel, Macon grows from a cowardly boy who lets himself be bullied into a self-assured young man. The turning point comes when Uncle Bird falls into a geyser and is scalded nearly to death. When Macon has to make his own decisions, he discovers the strength he needs to save his friend—and survive.