There is no story more distinctly American than the western and no writer as great a master of the form as Louis L'Amour. In this seventh volume of L'Amour's collected short stories, you'll find some of his most popular characters, heroes who have become a part of our cultural legacy, as well as the ordinary men and women whose adventures are chronicled with an immediacy no reader can resist-or ever forget.In Louis L'Amour's frontier stories, the American West is the crucible in which character is tested, reputations are won or lost, and life always hangs in the balance. Struggling to survive against the elements, hostile Indians, or outlaws who prey upon the honest and hardworking, the men and women in these tales each come face-to-face with what they're made of-often in moments that explode with the violence of an avalanche or the speed of a drawn gun. Here L'Amour demonstrates the unerring touch for detail and keen insight into human nature that lend these stories the power to thrill, surprise, and entertain readers of every generation.A man driven by his faith in the woman he loves survives war, Indian massacre, and near starvation only to find his homecoming delayed by one last battle-under his own roof. To stop a range war, a ranch foreman stands up to his boss, his men, and conspirators who seem to have both right and might on their side. And in a town where fourteen men have already died under suspicious circumstances, a new sheriff by the name of Utah Blaine patiently sets a trap for a frontier serial killer.Here are stories of honest thieves and crooked lawmen, of dream chasers and treasure hunters, of men and women hoping for a second chance and others down to their last. This rich and varied cast embodies not only the spirit of the West but the timeless struggle of the best and worst in us all, on a stage as big as the frontier itself. Full of suspense, mystery, adventure, this remarkable collection has everything that's earned Louis L'Amour his well-deserved reputation as America's favorite storyteller.From the Hardcover edition.
The fourth volume of the late L'Amour's short stories takes the author out of his familiar American frontier setting and into desolate and dangerous locales around the world, from "a narrow fjord at the end of the earth" on the southern coast of Chile to a "lonely isolated spot in the Coral Sea." While the characters are not traditional L'Amour, as "men of quick wit and valor" they share similar characteristics and values; freighter captain Ponga Jim Mayo, who plies the treacherous waters of the Indian Ocean during World War II (and is featured in nine of these 45 stories), succinctly sums up their worldview: "I'll make my own rules and abide by the consequences." The stories reflect the author's own youthful wanderings--as seaman, soldier and professional boxer--and, having been mostly written for pulp adventure magazines, are predictably formulaic. L'Amour's first publication, "Death Westbound," a Depression-era hobo story, crackles with his trademark prose: "Sometimes the shacks were pretty good guys, but a railroad dick is always a louie." No L'Amour fan will want to miss this collection. Afterword by L'Amour's son, Beau L'Amour. (Nov. 7)
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October 25, 2009
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