I hate westerns so much, but my entire family read Lonesome Dove, and I got shamed into reading it! Nice, huh? It's a good thing I did, because this 1986 Pulitzer Prize winner is an absolute masterpiece. McMurtry's storytelling skills are at their peak here, and it is one hell of a book. Take it from this western-hater: you will love this! Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
by Larry McMurtry, the author of Terms of Endearment,
is his long-awaited masterpiece, the major novel at last of the American West as it really was.
A love story, an adventure, an American epic, Lonesome Dove embraces all the West legend and fact, heroes and outlaws, whores and ladies, Indians and settlers in a novel that recreates the central American experience, the most enduring of our national myths.
Set in the late nineteenth century, Lonesome Dove is the story of a cattle drive from Texas to Montana and much more. It is a drive that represents for everybody involved not only a daring, even a foolhardy, adventure, but a part of the American Dream the attempt to carve out of the last remaining wilderness a new life.
Augustus McCrae and W. F. Call are former Texas Rangers, partners and friends who have shared hardship and danger together without ever quite understanding (or wanting to understand) each other's deepest emotions. Gus is the romantic, a reluctant rancher who has a way with women and the sense to leave well enough alone. Call is a driven, demanding man, a natural authority figure with no patience for weaknesses, and not many of his own. He is obsessed with the dream of creating his own empire, and with the need to conceal a secret sorrow of his own. The two men could hardly be more different, but both are tough, redoubtable fighters who have learned to count on each other, if nothing else.
Call's dream not only drags Gus along in its wake, but draws in a vast cast of characters:
- Lorena, the whore with the proverbial heart of gold, whom Gus (and almost everyone else) loves, and who survives one of the most terrifying experiences any woman could have...
- Elmira, the restless, reluctant wife of a small-time Arkansas sheriff, who runs away from the security of marriage to become part of the great Western adventure...
- Blue Duck, the sinister Indian renegade, one of the most frightening villains in American fiction, whose steely capacity for cruelty affects the lives of everyone in the book...
- Newt, the young cowboy for whom the long and dangerous journey from Texas to Montana is in fact a search for his own identity...
- Jake, the dashing, womanizing exRanger, a comrade-in-arms of Gus and Call, whose weakness leads him to an unexpected fate...
- July Johnson, husband of Elmira, whose love for her draws him out of his secure life into the wilderness, and turns him into a kind of hero...
sweeps from the Rio Grande (where Gus and Call acquire the cattle for their long drive by raiding the Mexicans) to the Montana highlands (where they find themselves besieged by the last, defiant remnants of an older West).
It is an epic of love, heroism, loyalty, honor, and betrayal faultlessly written, unfailingly dramatic. Lonesome Dove is the novel about the West that American literature and the American reader has long been waiting for.
“If you read only one western novel in your life, read Lonesome Dove.”—USA Today
“Everything about Lonesome Dove feels true . . . These are real people, and they are still larger than life.”—Nicholas Lemann, The New York Times Book Review
“Lonesome Dove is Larry McMurtry’s loftiest novel."—Los Angeles Times
"A marvelous novel . . . moves with joyous energy . . . amply imagined and crisply, lovingly written. I haven't enjoyed a book more this year . . . a joyous epic."--Newsweek
"The finest novel that McMurtry has yet accomplished . . . Lonesome Dove has all the action anyone could possibly imagine . . . [and] both in general and in details, the authority of exact authenticity . . . superb."--Chicago Tribune
Larry McMurtry's major bestseller and Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece about the Old West, updated with new material for its 25th anniversary.
A love story, an adventure, and an epic of the frontier, Larry McMurtry's Pulitzer Prize-winning classic Lonesome Dove, the third book in the Lonesome Dove tetralogy, is the grandest novel ever written about the last, defiant wilderness of America. Journey to the dusty little Texas town of Lonesome Dove and meet an unforgettable assortment of heroes and outlaws, whores and ladies, Indians and settlers. Richly authentic, beautifully written, and always dramatic, Lonesome Dove is a book to make us laugh, weep, dream, and remember.
“A joyous epic”—Larry McMurtry’s bestselling, Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece about the Old West, now with a new preface by the author.
• An enduring American classic: Already a beloved American novel and award-winning miniseries, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Lonesome Dove is widely considered to be Larry McMurtry’s greatest work.
• Repackaged and updated: This new paperback edition will feature a contemporary look with new material, guaranteeing its place in history.
• A love story, an adventure, and an epic of the frontier: Set in the late nineteenth century, Lonesome Dove is the story of a cattle drive from Texas to Montana. Augustus McCrae and W. F. Call are former Texas rangers—partners and friends—who have shared hardship and danger without ever quite understanding each other. Gus is the romantic, a reluctant rancher who has a way with women. Call is driven and demanding, a natural authority figure with no patience for weakness. The two could hardly be more different, but both are tough, redoubtable fighters who have learned to count on each other, if nothing else.
About the Author
Larry McMurtry is the author of twenty-nine novels, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Lonesome Dove, three memoirs, two collections of essays, and more than thirty screenplays. He lives in Archer City, Texas.