Frank Stedman, a football player whose long ago career ended miserably, retreats to his ancestral hometown because he has nowhere else to go. Debby Newsome, having worked for every media outlet that her family owns, has gone into virtual hiding on her father's retirement ranch. Buddy Tom Matlin, an African-American cowboy and Frank's boyhood mentor, has lived in Pearl, Texas, all of his life and knows the town's secrets. Something is wrong in Pearl. Between 1990 and 2000, the population shrank from 2,500 to 1,100, and that number diminishes daily. What few townsfolk remember is that this is not the first time that Pearl has dried up and blown away. Over a long weekend, it falls to a crippled middle-aged jock, a self-possessed scribbler and an old ranch hand not only to save the town, but to destroy Pearl's destroyer once and for all. The Nightwatch is a story of lost courage found and love discovered and of the eternal impossibility of good compromising with evil.
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James Harriss -- writer, musician and Baptist preacher -- is also the author of Bought and a non-fiction work, Earnestly Contend. He lives with his wife Velda in Ozark, Missouri. They have two grown sons.
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