In a world covered with drama, romance and action books, a slight change may feel like a breath of fresh air. Western crime has been slightly underrated lately, but a few recent releases have brought the genre back in fashion. All in all, here are some of the best modern western crime books released over the past years.

The Son, by Philipp Meyer

Philipp Meyer's book covers Eli McCullough's story, a mix between the hero everyone wants and a villain no one likes. The story begins with Eli's unhappy experience as a kid. He is taken hostage by the Comanche without an actual purpose. However, his skill impresses the tribe members and he quickly becomes a member.

With time, he has to get back to white civilization, but things are more difficult than he expected. He has the vision and experience of an old warrior, but he looks like a teenager. His life gets an unusual turn and the story follows it as he decides to take the world over.

The Round House, by Louise Erdrich

The Round House introduces the reader to Joe Coutts' story – an Ojibwe tribe member who lives in North Dakota. The thirteen year old teenager has a shock as he finds out his mother has been raped and this is when the action begins.

The storyline follows Joe on his quest to find the man who attacked and abused his mother. He wants justice to be made. As the story unveils, the reader is taken through more moods. At times, it is a mysterious crime story. Other times, it underlines a beautiful family portrait.

The Ballad of John Bondi, by Matthew Kruelle

The wild west is now history, but it seems that northern parts of Arizona still rely on their classic rules. Nothing has changed there. When the local king dies, various tribe members end up searching for his treasure.

In a land covered by deserts, canyons and forests, finding the treasure seems to be an impossible task. However, there are rumors that it might be hidden along Route 66. At this point, the story follows John Bondi, who seems to know where it is. When all the bandits want a piece of it, things get messy.

Texas Outlaw (Rory Yates 2), by James Patterson

Texas Ranger Rory Yates becomes famous when his girlfriend – a popular country singer – writes a song about his actions. However, he manages to recover his quiet times by being transferred to Rio Lobo, a tiny remote town from Texas.

Rory is transferred at another detective's request. She believes a councilwoman has been murdered, yet all clues lead to an accidental death. Rory has to investigate a case that untangles many dirty secrets.

The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick deWitt

This is one of the best modern western crime books if you want a funny story told in a beautiful way. It tells the story of Charlie and Eli – two assassins on their way to complete a mission from the Commodore.

The Commodore asks them to eliminate Hermann Warm, who apparently stole something. However, the brothers fail to get the whole story. As they try to complete the mission, they reveal many more secrets that they were not aware of.

Final words

Bottom line, these are some of the best modern western crime books released in the last years. Each of them can make a great weekend read in the garden – get ready for some easy action with lots of unexpected surprises.