The Crooked Stick is a Fiction Short Story Book. This book tells that The time, the close of a lurid sultry February day, towards the end of a long, dry summer succeeding a rainless winter, in the arid region of West Logan. A blood red sun sinking all too slowly, yet angrily, into a crimson ocean; suddenly disappearing, as if in despotic defiance of all future rainfall. A fiery portent receding into the inferno of a vast conflagration, was the image chiefly presented to the dwellers in that pastoral desert, long heartsick with hope deferred. The scene, a limitless stretch of plain its wearisome monotony feebly broken by belts of timber or an infrequent pine ridge. The earth adust. A hopeless, steel blue sky. The atmosphere stagnated, breezeless. The forest tribes all dumb. The Wannonbah mail coach toiling over the furrows of a sandhill, walled in by a pine thicket. 'Thank God! the sun is down at last; we must sight Hyland's within the hour', exclaimed the passenger on the box seat, a tall, handsome man, with 'formerly in the army' legibly impressed on form and feature. 'How glad I shall be to see the river; and what a luxury a swim will be!' 'Been as hot a day as ever I know'd, Captain', affirmed the sun bronzed driver, with slow decision; 'but' and here he double thonged the off wheeler, as if in accentuation of his statement 'heat, and flies, and muskeeters, dust and sand and bad water, ain't the wust of this road not by a long chalk'.