“A Killer is What They Needed” (Graphic Publishers, $40)

untold-story-of-commodore-perry-owens_reviewn the year 1886, Commodore Perry Owens became sheriff of Apache County, Arizona Territory. He had no regular law enforcement background, but he was one of the finest marksmen in the territory.

He was chivalrous to women, protective of children, respectful of persecuted Latter-day Saints families and an amigo to the Spanish people of Concho. “A Killer is What They Needed:” The True, Untold Story of Commodore Perry Owens brings to light the remarkable research of author David Grassé, a third-generation Arizonan. This may not be the “last word” on Owens, but it is certainly more complete than any of the older accounts I have read, including my own. “The Gunfight” chapter is probably the most accurate account ever written of the Owens shoot-out with the Blevins Gang in Holbrook.


—Jo Baeza, author of Arizona: The Making of a State

What do you think?