The action in Arivaca started out from almost the very first page but once Jesse was sent to the boy's ranch it all came to a screeching halt and I struggled to continue reading. The religious relic part of the story is what kept me going and thankfully towards the last third of the book, the action picked up again.
Another reason I didn't get sucked in were the characters. With her poor attitude, initially it was really hard for me to like Cedar and Jesse wasn't very appealing either. He was too bland for my liking and there wasn't anything to make me feel invested in what happened to Jesse until the very end. The only characters I really liked were a couple of the boys in Jesse's posse and the ranch hand, Paco. The added some much needed lightness to the story earning a good chuckle here and there.
Overall I did like the way the book came together in the end and thought the cliff hanger ending was well done but not enough for me to want to read the next installment in the series.
Recommended for teens.