Tag Archives: Ernest Haycox

The Mammoth Book of Westerns edited by Jon E. Lewis

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of westerns book cover

Title: The Mammoth Book of Westerns
Author: Jon E. Lewis, Bret Harte, Mark Twain, Frederic Remington, O. Henry, Stephen Crane, Willa Cather, B.M. Bower, Jack London, John G. Neihardt, Hamlin Garland, Zane Grey, Max Brand, Owen Wister, Conrad Richter, Walter Van Tilburg Clark, Ernest Haycox, Oliver La Farge, A.B. Guthrie, James Warner Bellah, Frank Bonham, Wallace Stegner, Dorothy M. Johnson, Steve Frazee, Jack Schaefer, Mari Sandoz, Thomas Thompson, Wayne D. Overholser, Elmer Kelton, Loren D. Estleman, Larry McMurtry, Edward Dorn, Leslie Marmon Silko, William Kittredge, Rick Bass & Christopher Tilghman
Series: Mammoth Books
In: The Mammoth Book of Westerns (Jon E. Lewis)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Short story collections, Westerns
Dates read: 7th March – 22nd November 2020
Pace: Slow
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2013
5th sentence, 74th page: She teased him, and threw flour in his face and put vinegar in his coffee, but he took her rough jokes with silent wonder, never even smiling.

Synopsis

35 OUTSTANDING WESTERNS, FROM JAMES FREDERIC REMINGTON TO RICK BASS

The Western is one of the greatest genres of world literature – singularly American, but with a truly global readership. 88 Ever since James Fenimore Cooper transformed frontier yarns into a distinct literary form, the Western has followed two paths: one populist – Time magazine’s American Morality Play – able to fit any political philosophy from red to redneck, with a sentimental attachment to the misfit; the other literary – eschewing heroism and debunking many of the myths of the West.

The best of both are represented in this excellent collection which includes stories by Willa Cather, Stephen Carne, Hamlin Garland, A.B. Guthrie, O. Henry, William Kittredge, Mari Sandoz, Leslie Marmon Silko and Wallace Stegner.

Thoughts

This wasn’t a bad collection. But it also wasn’t my favourite… actually, thus far, it is my least favourite Mammoth Books collection. Nothing against the layout or the writing… I just don’t really love Westerns as I have now discovered. A new genre to try, but not one to necessarily fill my shelves with.

Since I didn’t fall head over heels for this, I think that it’s the kind of collection that I will read again. Once I’m a little older and possibly more mature… after all, my tastes in books and genres is constantly changing as I grow and change myself. But, for now, it will go back on my shelves and probably not be touched again for a little while.

One of my favourite aspects of this book is the mini bio at the beginning of each story. Not only did it highlight when and where the author lived, but some of their better-known books. A great bit of information if I had wanted to add any of these authors to my wishlist…

<- The Mammoth Book of the WestThe Outcasts of Poker Flat ->

Image source: Hachette Australia

When You Carry the Star by Ernest Haycox

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of westerns book cover

Title: When You Carry the Star
Author: Ernest Haycox
In: The Mammoth Book of Westerns (Jon E. Lewis)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Westerns
Dates read: 16th July 2020
Pace: Slow
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2013
5th sentence, 74th page: The leagues rolled away to the distance, southwesterly into a horizon unbroken, northwesterly to a lien of hills even now beginning to fade behind an autumn haze.

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Synopsis

When Linza’s friend begins to go off the beaten track it’s up to him, as the Sheriff, to hunt him down. But that’s what you do when you carry the Star.

Thoughts

This is a short story that features a friend hunting a friend. A man who is forced to do the distasteful in the name of justice and honour. It’s a little sad to be honest. I can’t imagine having to man hunt a friend, but it’s also got that quintessential feeling of a western – one that focuses on good guys and bad guys and where things are just plain right and wrong. Black and white.

I like the descriptions of Denton going “mad”. How he suddenly flipped his lid and went against everything and every code that he honoured. It was a little bit tragic and harsh. But I did like how the description of something that could have been heat stroke was described.

This story really focuses on the honour and power of a lawman. It highlights how the men of the law were focused upon protecting and upholding the law. Even if it means hunting down and killing ones friend. Which, admittedly was a little bit of a tragic ending…

<- The Wind and the Snow of WinterThe Young Warrior ->

Image source: Hachette Australia