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Josey Wales: Two Westerns : Gone to Texas/The Vengeance Trail of Josey Wales Paperback – August 1, 1989
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Top Customer Reviews
But Josey Wales turned me on to the genre, and I now have a little collection of Western novels, although none of them capture the life of a western gunslinger as brilliantly as Josey Wales does.
The two novels are bound together, with a short afterword by Lawrence Clayton.
Carter captures the culture of the outlaw in a way that allows us to see the context of the factors that created them. Josey Wales is, at his core, the same kind of homesteader as Pa Ingalls or the Joads family (from Little House on the Prairie and The Grapes of Wrath, respectively). But when a terrible deed brings his life down around his ears, he becomes driven by vengeance, and seeks justice against a hopelessly overwhelming enemy.
We also get an intimate look at the details of rugged trail life. Even better, we get to see some of the legion factors that crafty Wales uses to his advantage in order to maintain an edge over his opponents in a gunfight. Too many authors explain their gunmen heroes as being "the quickest draw." Wales is quick, to be sure, but he also knows enough to keep his horse fed on grain, and to engage in shootouts while the sun is at his back.
Both of these novels bring the reader on a journey through the American west that feels utterly real. The characters that we meet all have a life of their own that demonstrates the diversity of people who populated the region-- it was far more than cowboys and indians, after all.
If you're a fan of Westerns, I think that this has to be at the top of your list. If you're not a fan of Westerns, but just of great fiction, this is also a must-read.
Since my interest was driven by the movie, I'll open by saying that reading Gone To Texas was a great reminder of the Outlaw Josey Wales. The descriptions and character actions and interactions were so reminiscent of the movie that you could easily visualize the movie. Clint Eastwood fit Mr. Carter's description of Josey Wales very closely. The big additions Mr. Carter provides are the added background on Josey Wales and the plight of the Missouri guerrilla with the added concept of how difficult Josey Wales's situation was (being tracked and hunted by `Federal' authorities).
The Vengeance Trail of Josey Wales picks up about a year or two after Gone To Texas and tells the story of Josey Wales going after a friend and the sacrifices he's prepared to make. Once more, this a solid story that would make a great western film for someone. Once more the descriptions are nicely done and you can easily imagine riding with Josey as he goes thru northern Mexico searching for his friends. There's great continuance from Gone To Texas and in some ways I almost preferred it (while not a unique story, an excellent follow up).
A nice solid 4 star book. When reading Mr.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was some of the best money I have spent. I loved the movie, and I loved the book. Different twists in the book enough to keep me reading. The second book was also very good.Published 28 days ago by William Whitman
Both books were very enjoyable. Great development of characters. Great insight into honor and beliefs.Published 1 month ago by Charles Baker
I don't read westerns. This one was great, better than the movie (though the movie is great too). Loved it!Published 1 month ago by Jim Atkins
I must preface my comment by saying that I am a biased fan of Clint Eastwood. Having said that, the book was much more than the movie made of it. Read morePublished 2 months ago by roznovkid
A truly great western story of the west adventure that most of us can only dream of.
Find some more western fiction if you can. These yarns are exciting.
First off, I gave only 4 Stars because I'm not a big Western fan. But this book is an exception. These two stories are exciting, excellently written, and so easy to get carried... Read morePublished 4 months ago by r.doolittle
Both books were very good reads. The first was amazingly close to the movie.Published 4 months ago by JF