True Grit, by Charles Portis.
“I was just fourteen years old when a coward going by the name of Tom Chaney shot my father down in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and robbed him of his life and his horse and $150 in cash money plus two California gold pieces that he carried in his trouser band.”
This is the story of Mattie Ross, fourteen years old, who hires deputy marshall Rooster Cogburn to bring back Tom Chaney from where he’s hiding in Indian Territory. Mattie is a practical young woman who knows her mind, knows how to get things done, and insists on going along on the chase.
I’ve read very few westerns and I’m really glad I read this one. I’m going to have to check out the new movie version.