In 1922 a lone woman arrives in a filthy frontier mining town in the Pacific Northwest. Her goal: to resurrect her dead uncle’s newspaper. Within two days a naked man is shot dead, a famous man is rumoured to be heading their way and the only man capable of fixing her broken-down press so that she might spread this news is a Chinese printer from the nearby forbidden settlement of Lousetown.

Over the next month, Lila Sinclair will take even bigger risks to see her business thrive—from her questionable news reporting to her negotiations with a partner who’s a liar and a gambler. Reckless, stubborn and with a maddening tendency to shed tears when provoked, Lila works long hours next to her printer to see her dream through, only to discover all that she could lose.

Inspired by the historical figures Morris “Two Gun” Cohen and Dr. Sun Yat-sen, whose joint pursuits would later bolster a revolution that ushered in the modern era for China, and further informed by Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West, with its themes of intercultural love in the Old West, fact blends with fiction in a dramatic tale that is part historical novel, part steampunk opera and part otherworldly Western.

Brutally beautiful, at times playful and absurd and then swiftly tragic, Two-Gun & Sun (Caitlin Press 2015) explores themes of truth, love and independence.


“A lively, satisfying narrative … [June Hutton] reveals herself as an artful historical storyteller. No, she’s not recounting the factual truth – she’s a novelist, after all – but her fictional take on her subject succeeds as a modern-day adventure tale that manages to be emotionally satisfying while describing one woman’s excursion to a bygone and largely forgotten heart of darkness.”

Quill & Quire

“Intelligent, cerebral, and intensely entertaining.”

Historical Novel Review

“Hutton’s novel is both sweeping and meticulous” with “something for everyone: a steampunk fascination with turn-of-the-century technology like Zeppelins, printing presses, and early cars, a certain gunslinging-ness ascribed to frontier westerns, and themes from Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West, itself being performed in the novel by a visiting troupe.”

All Lit Up book club

“A lovely and satisfying novel.”

Raspberry Magazine

“This is a swashbuckling tale, full of mysterious twists and turns, a page-turner…”

The Malahat Review