This is the first edition of GnL Recommend. This is a feature where my girlies (AKA my dogs or reading buddies) recommend a book(s) that they think are worth your time looking into. This feature will be held weekly on Staurdays so keep checking back to see what the girls have come up with for the week.
Synopsis (A review found on Amazon that describes the story pretty well):
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry has been knocking around for more than a decade and is recognized by many as a classic of American Western literature. And no wonder. If you like a good cowboy story; if you're an aficionado of the West, in love with its history and geography; if you want your heart torn out and kicked from Texas to the Teton, then Lonesome Dove is the book you're looking for.
Augustus McRae, Woodrow Call, and Jake Spoon, three has-been Texas Rangers, hatch a half-baked scheme to abandon their dusty lives in the un-town of Lonesome Dove on the Rio Grande, and embark on a cattle drive to the upper reaches of Montana. They depart with two thousand head of re-stolen cattle along with a misbegotten crew of sometime ranch hands, lost and found Irish brothers, green local kids, a Mexican cook who can't, and the town whore Lorena -- with hair of gold even though her heart isn't.
They struggle north to untamed country none of them but Jake has ever seen -- and him a liar. They cross the Neuces, the Colorado, the Red, the Canadian, the Arkansas and up and up, fighting desperados, Comanches, sandstorms, water moccasins, bad food, bad water, bad luck and bad news. Multiple plots weave and braid and separate and double back upon you again like all the streams and rivers descending from the High Plains.
But it is into the strange landscape of the human heart which the reader has been lured. For while this story concerns a pilgrimage to Montana, it is, on another level, a journey in understanding what human life amounts to, balanced as it is between hope and hopelessness, and in the words of Gus McRae, "rich with hardship." It is McMurtry's characters, as much as the route they take, which define this journey. With all their quirkiness, these characters are mind-stickers, all. We're talking Dickens 'n dogies, here. Hamlet on horseback. From the raping, torturing Comanche renegade Blue Duck, so evil as to be devoid of humanity, to the feisty widow who has her way with the the deputy sheriff, a man who finds her "almost as scary as wild pigs", to the tragic young whore Maggie, who asks only to hear her name spoken once by the man she loves, it is a haunting group we travel with.
Snake attack on the Neuces to sneak attack on the Musselshell, Lonesome Dove ropes the reader, drags him through hell and high water, and leaves him feeling that the one certain thing is love, the existence of which is proven only by the size of the hole it blasts in the human heart.
Laci says: Read it! It's one of our favorites and the "movie" is pretty great too. You don't even have to like westerns to like this book. I don't like westerns (I prefer to sleep or plot world domination with my vertically challenged pal, Gus) and I like this book.
Synopsis (Amazon.com review of the book):
First published in 1970, this extraordinary book changed the way Americans think about the original inhabitants of their country. Beginning with the Long Walk of the Navajos in 1860 and ending 30 years later with the massacre of Sioux men, women, and children at Wounded Knee in South Dakota, it tells how the American Indians lost their land and lives to a dynamically expanding white society. During these three decades, America's population doubled from 31 million to 62 million. Again and again, promises made to the Indians fell victim to the ruthlessness and greed of settlers pushing westward to make new lives. The Indians were herded off their ancestral lands into ever-shrinking reservations, and were starved and killed if they resisted. It is a truism that "history is written by the victors"; for the first time, this book described the opening of the West from the Indians' viewpoint. Accustomed to stereotypes of Indians as red savages, white Americans were shocked to read the reasoned eloquence of Indian leaders and learn of the bravery with which they and their peoples endured suffering. With meticulous research and in measured language overlaying brutal narrative, Dee Brown focused attention on a national disgrace. Still controversial but with many of its premises now accepted, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee has sold 5 million copies around the world. Thirty years after it first broke onto the national conscience, it has lost none of its importance or emotional impact.
It took a little doing but here is what Gus has to say.
Gus says: You woke me for this?!
Jamie says: Yup, you two wanted to contribute to the blog so here it is.
Gus says: GRRRR!
Jamie says: Well what do you want the people to know?
Gus says: I want them to know that I'm tired!
Jamie says: About the book!
Gus says: Well, why didn't you say so?!....they should read it because I said so (I hear that used alot around here and it seems to be very effective). You liked it, right?
Jamie says: Yeah I liked it a lot. Very accurate historically...Makes you rethink who the "savages" really are.
Gus says: Well I liked it a lot too, LOTS of "Team Cuddle" time. If they don't read it I'll sick the "Tall One" on them!
Well there you have it....Until next week, when hopefully Gus is a little more copperative and Laci isn't threatening world domination.