Lee and Johnny Scott are back—and so is Old Sam—in this sequel to Old Sam, Dakota Trotter. Despite the disfiguring injury that ended Old Sam’s career as a champion thoroughbred trotter, he is still as fast—and as canny— as ever, an indispensible help for the Scott family in their new home. Then, Old Sam mysteriously goes missing. Johnny figures that any thief who dares to steal that horse will soon be sorry. With the help of Lee and their gang of friends, Johnny soon has things well in hand, finding Old Sam’s track, setting up a communication system that works with mirrors and well-placed minions—and generally running circles around his elders. And, of course, Old Sam does not let his boys down. That Johnny also encounters some sobering moments in his headlong pursuit of justice is a sad, perhaps unavoidable, consequence in a way of life still on the fringes of civilized society.
Both books about Old Sam and the Scott family are based on the author’s true-life, homesteading experiences in what is now the southeastern region of the state of North Dakota.