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The Californios [Kindle Edition]

Louis L'Amour
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $5.99
Kindle Price: $5.12
You Save: $0.87 (15%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Captain Sean Mulkerin comes home from the sea to find his family’s Malibu ranch in jeopardy. The death of Sean’s father has pushed his mother to the edge of financial ruin, and now it’s up to Sean to find a way out. The rumor is that the elder Mulkerin found gold in the wild and haunted California hills, but the only clue to its whereabouts lies with an ancient, enigmatic Indian.

When Sean and his brother set forth to retrace their father’s footsteps, they know they are in search of a questionable treasure—with creditors, greedy neighbors, and ruthless gunmen watching every move they make. Before they reach their destination, the Mulkerins will test both the limits of their faith and the laws of nature as they seek salvation in a landscape where reality can blur like sand and sky in a desert mirage.

From the Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

In 1844 nobody believed there was gold in California. Nobody, that is, except the Mulkerina and an old Indian with mystical powers. The Mulkerins needed a treasure to settle the debt on their Malibu ranch. The Indian was willing to lead them to one. But riding hard on their trail was the greediest band of cutthroats north of the Baja. Killing was their business. Doing it for gold would only make it sweeter.

From the Inside Flap

In 1844 nobody believed there was gold in California. Nobody, that is, except the Mulkerina and an old Indian with mystical powers. The Mulkerins needed a treasure to settle the debt on their Malibu ranch. The Indian was willing to lead them to one. But riding hard on their trail was the greediest band of cutthroats north of the Baja. Killing was their business. Doing it for gold would only make it sweeter.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1536 KB
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (November 23, 2004)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FC2MBI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,726 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars California History/Mystery All In One! August 16, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This one doesn't really fall into the Western category, but it's full of hammering action, informative local California history, and mystic goings-on. Seacoast adventures, early Califronia ranching, great good-guys and really bad bad-guys, and mysterious appearances by silent, unknown characters fill this one to the brim! Best of all, L'Amour introduces in this story, for what I believe was the first time in his writings, the famous "portal to the other side," which really sets this story apart from almost all of his other works. Excellent yarn through and through. You won't forget it for a long time after you first read it!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have read fourteen books of Louis L'Amour's writings and this one happened to be one of the best books I read. It's different, and keeps you wondering about what's goin' to happen next, and in the end leaves you with a big smile drawn upon your face!. If you haven't read The Californios, then you'd better go get it! It's one of his finest writings! I usually keep my books on a shelf but I stored this one among my most-loved possessions! Louis L'Amour is by far the greatest storyteller, and this is how he's going to be remembered until the end of time!.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars review of the californios November 27, 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
overall, The Californios was a good historical western story, and one of the best westerns i've ever read. the book was set in the 1800s in southern California and Mexico, and used realstic details and events from that time period to add to the plot. it had the perfect cowboy setting - canyons, deserts, mountains, horses, Indians, and outlaws. it also involved things that were happening in the 1800s, including immigration and dispute between Mexico and the US. throughout the book, the author uses these to relate to his characters and makes the suspense of the story a lot better. The Californios has all the basic western themes too - adventure, gunfights, treasure hunting, bandits, and old wise men. it even involves spirits and mystical events to beef up the mystery.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Captivating Storyteller September 16, 2003
Format:School & Library Binding
L'Amour masterfully describes the beautiful California scenery, the situations, and the characters, as he unfolds the plot in his reader's mind's eye. Included in this mix is the ever-present set of challenges facing the protagonists. As one of his characters says in this novel, "there is always trouble. One learns to live with it. A man grows through enduring." A few chapters over one of his characters observes "men must struggle or they deteriorate." Which leads to the addition of philosophy or worldview, another component of L'Amour's works. I agree with some of his sermonizing, i.e., issues such as a strong work ethic and bravery. I strongly disagree when he tries to subtlely preach acceptance of mysticism which is anti-Christian. Moving back to a more positive matter, L'Amour inserts elements of human relations in his works. For example in talking about Mariana visiting with Sean in this book he notes "she listened more to the man than to the words." In synergistically observing people and location, he notes how one impacts the other by writing "in New England and in northern Europe the seasons were short and the air brisk. One had little time to do what needed to be done. In California the seasons merged, dreamed one into the other, and what was not done today could be done tomorrow." If taken in context, i.e., specifially if one ignores his advocacy of anti-Christian spiritualism, he has a colorful, adventure story of the old West to tell.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This novel should have been made into a movie! October 12, 1998
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I often wonder why someone like Steven Speilberg never cared to read such literary talent...I re-read Californios in my late twenties and wondered if SS could make a movie out of this. It would probably become every kid's fantasy in the truest sense of the word if only every word of this book is translated using computer graphics...recall that JAWS and ET were runaway blockbusters that dealt with a shark and an extra-terrestrial as such. The SETI project is 40 years old and still no's time to become fascinated by our own kind I guess! And Louis Dearborn L'Amour is definitely the last of the breed!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Western with Mystical Elements February 27, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
"The Californios" is a western with a different feel than most of Louis L'Amour's other novels. As usual, there is action, light romance, and suspense. However, "The Californios" has a mystical side that has similar elements as L'Amour's book "The Haunted Mesa." Overall, the book is fantastic and one both L'Amour fan, and those new to his writing, will enjoy.

The story is about a man trying to help his mother keep her ranch. As she owes money to a scoundrel who would rather own her land, they are in a predicament. Years ago, her husband went into the desert with a man called the Old One, the last of an ancient people, and returned with gold. Now, they believe finding the Old One may help them again.

"The Californios" is an amazing book worth reading. You will learn about life in the early 1800s California without trying. Perhaps the most enjoyable part was the philosophical statements and the mystical elements sprinkled throughout the book. Furthermore, the book peaked my interest in learning more about ancient people who were in America before the Indians. To top it off, the suspense runs from the beginning to end and is truly exceptional reading.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved it, knew the place.
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Bob
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely will read it again. Is written in such ...
Definitely will read it again. Is written in such a way that you are able to remember the history of California.
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars another great book. by Louis L'amour
Louis l'amour is not only a great author but he researches and goes to the places that he writes about
Published 3 months ago by TimG
5.0 out of 5 stars Another item lost in fire -- replaced!
Again, as I've said in a few other reviews, there are only a relative few items, out of the tens of thousands lost in total destruction by fire, of our home a few months back, that... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Suzanne-Marie
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining!
Another L'Amour re-read. Unfortunately (unfortunate because no new discoveries) another re-read. I enjoyed the book the first time around and enjoyed it again. Read more
Published 4 months ago by C. Compton
5.0 out of 5 stars The Californios
Purchased for my husband to listen to as he travels to work. He really enjoyed the book and lives all of Louis L'Amour's tales.
Published 4 months ago by B. K. Moss
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
A real enjoyable book to read in the L'Amour western flavor I have always I am acustom. A little bit as it would be, Santa Monica CA history.
Published 4 months ago by Mitchell Roberts
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my many favorites!
This is a another great read from L;Amour. He always brings elements of factual history with a wonderful story. Read more
Published 5 months ago by leftyhud
5.0 out of 5 stars Louis L'Amour
Really, all I can say is
that Louis L'Amour is the greatest western writer of all times. You will enjoy this book. Good story and characters.
Published 5 months ago by Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A refreshing L'Amour
Thought I had read Them all but was pleasantly surprised to find this one. A really good read, somewhat different than the usual and certainly not a SACKETT, but definitely an... Read more
Published 6 months ago by erwin cornett
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More About the Author

"I think of myself in the oral tradition--as a troubadour, a village tale-teller, the man in the shadows of a campfire. That's the way I'd like to be remembered--as a storyteller. A good storyteller."

It is doubtful that any author could be as at home in the world re-created in his novels as Louis Dearborn L'Amour. Not only could he physically fill the boots of the rugged characters he wrote about, but he literally "walked the land my characters walk." His personal experiences as well as his lifelong devotion to historical research combined to give Mr. L'Amour the unique knowledge and understanding of people, events, and the challenge of the American frontier that became the hallmarks of his popularity.

Of French-Irish descent, Mr. L'Amour could trace his own in North America back to the early 1600s and follow their steady progression westward, "always on the frontier." As a boy growing up in Jamestown, North Dakota, he absorbed all he could about his family's frontier heritage, including the story of his great-grandfather who was scalped by Sioux warriors.

Spurred by an eager curiosity and desire to broaden his horizons, Mr. L'Amour left home at the age of fifteen and enjoyed a wide variety of jobs, including seaman, lumberjack, elephant handler, skinner of dead cattle, and miner, and was an officer in the transportation corps during World War II. During his "yondering" days he also circled the world on a freighter, sailed a dhow on the Red Sea, was shipwrecked in the West Indies and stranded in the Mojave Desert. He won fifty-one of fifty-nine fights as a professional boxer and worked as a journalist and lecturer. He was a voracious reader and collector of rare books. His personal library contained 17,000 volumes.

Mr. L'Amour "wanted to write almost from the time I could talk." After developing a widespread following for his many frontiers and adventure stories written for fiction magazines, Mr. L'Amour published his first full length novel, Hondo, in the United States in 1953. Every one of his more than 120 books is in print; there are more than 300 million copies of his books in print worldwide, making him one of the bestselling authors in modern literary history. His books have been translated into twenty languages, and more than forty-five of his novels and stories have been made into feature films and television movies.

The recipient of many great honor and awards, in 1983 Mr. L'Amour became the first novelist to ever to be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal by the United States Congress in honor of his life's work. In 1984 he was also awarded the Medal of Freedom by President Reagan.

Louis L'Amour died on June 10, 1988. His wife, Kathy, and their two children, Beau and Angelique, carry the L'Amour publishing tradition forward with new books written by the author during his lifetime to be published by Bantam.

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