Synopses & Reviews
Charles Portis has been acclaimed as one of America's foremost comic writers. True Grit
is his most famous novel first published in 1968 and the basis for the movie of the same name starring John Wayne (for which he won his only Academy Award). It tells the story of Mattie Ross, a fourteen-year-old girl from Dardanelle, Arkansas, who sets out in the winter of eighteen seventy-something to avenge the murder of her father.
Since not even Mattie (who is no self-doubter) would ride into Indian Territory alone, she convinces one-eyed Rooster Cogburn, the meanest available U.S. Marshall, to tag along with her. As Mattie outdickers and outmaneuvers the hard-bitten types in her path, as her performance under fire makes them eat their words, her indestructible vitality and harsh innocence by turns amuse, horrify, and touch the reader. What happens to Mattie, to the gang of outlaws unfortunate enough to tangle with her rings with the dramatic rightness of legend and the marvelous overtones, the continual surprises, of personality.
True Grit is eccentric, cool, straight, and unflinching, like Mattie herself, who tells the story a half-century later in a voice that sounds strong and sure enough to outlast us all.
"I've always thought Charles Portis had a wonderful talent original, quirky, exciting." Larry McMurtry
"The best novel to come my way for a very long time....What a writer!" Roald Dahl
"It is a delight. Mattie Ross from near Dardanelle, Arkansas, is here to stay, like Huck Finn." Walker Percy
Portis is one of America's foremost comic writers. True Grit is his most famous novel and the basis for the movie of the same name starring John Wayne. It tells the story of Mattie Ross, a 14-year-old girl from Arkansas, who sets out in the winter of 1870-something to avenge the murder of her father.
Charles Portis has long been acclaimed as one of America's foremost comic writers. True Grit
is his most famous novel--first published in 1968, and the basis for the movie of the same name starring John Wayne. It tells the story of Mattie Ross, who is just fourteen years of age when a coward going by the name of Tom Chaney shoots her father down in Fort Smith, Arkansas, and robs him of his life, his horse, and $150 in cash money. Mattie leaves home to avenge her father's blood. With the one-eyed Rooster Cogburn, the meanest available U.S. Marshal, by her side, Mattie pursues the homicide into Indian Territory.
True Grit is eccentric, cool, straight, and unflinching, like Mattie herself. From a writer of true cult status, this is an American classic through and through. This new edition, with a smart new package and an afterword by acclaimed author Donna Tartt, will bring this masterpiece to an even broader audience.
About the Author
Charles Portis lives in Arkansas, where he was born and educated. He served in the Marine Corps during the Korean War. As a reporter, he wrote for the New York Herald-Tribune and was also its London bureau chief. He is the author of four other novels, including Masters of Atlantis, The Dog of the South, Norwood, and Gringos.