Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Prize Winning Fiction
Prize Winning Fiction

1986 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Winner

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry


Publisher: Pocket Books/ Simon & Schuster

Length: 843 pages

About: Epic western - whores and cowboys

Style: 3rd person

Where: US (Texas, Nebraska and Montana)

When: 1880-90s



Publisher’s synopsis:

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.



'Some might think it foolish to try and steal horses from the best-armed ranch in northern Mexico,' Augustus said. 'Pedro must work about a hundred vaqueros.' 'Yes but they're spread around, and most of them can't shoot,' Call said. 'Most of us can't either', Augustus said. 'Dish and Newt ain't never spilt blood, and one of 'ems drunk anyway.' ' Gus, you'd talk to a pssum.' Jake said. 'I wisht we had one along,' Augustus said. 'I've seen possums that could outthink this crowd.'




The question is whether it is possible to be eccentric and "major" in the same novel.The scenes that best put the matter to rest are the most traditionally Western ones - the gunfights, stampedes, hangings and horse-stealings. Every one of these is thrilling and almost perfectly realized.

New York Times, Necholas Lemann, 9th June 1985


Not so good:

...Don't be in a hurry to get through this book, and don't expect fast-paced action. It takes nearly 200 pages before the cattle drive gets underway...

United Press International reprinted in Pacific Stars and Stripes 4th August 1985 (Japan, Tokyo)


About the author

Larry McMurtry was born in June 1936, in Wichita Falls, Texas, into a family of ranchers. His grandparents were pioneers, settling in Archer County when west Texas was still primarily vast, empty prairie.


While his father and eight uncles were all cowboys, Mr. McMurtry as a young person had a real passion for whatever books he could get his hands on growing up in the small Texas town of Archer City. He began learning cowboying at the age of three, when he got his first horse, and didn't give it up completely until the age of twenty-three, when he left the family ranch to further his studies.


Mr. McMurtry served a two-year term as president of PEN American Center in New York City. He operates antiquarian bookstores in Washington, D.C., Arizona, and Texas, and currently resides in his old hometown, Archer City, where he is actively fulfilling his boyhood dream of filling it up with books.













































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<1985> -  <1987>














Page turner







Age guide: 18


Novels by same author:



1990 movie starring Robert Duvall & TV adaption by BBC in 1993




2016 Pulitzer Prize Winner

It's a massive day in arts and journalism because the 100th annual Pulitzer Prize winners were just announced, and there's a big surprise. 2015's best artistic and nonfiction writing across 21 categories were recognized during a ceremony Monday afternoon at Columbia University in New York City. The first Pulitzer Prize was awarded to Hebert Bayward Swope, a reporter for The New York World, in 1916. (And if you're as big a fan of Newsies as I am, that paper should ring a bell, but try to think of it more positively.)

The major prize for book nerds, the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction went to The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove Press), a legitimate surprise, if you've been paying attention to the book nerd and industry buzz. The feeling around the prize in the last few months would have you putting all your hard-earned cash down on A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara to take home the award, but that's why you should never gamble. Viet Thanh Nguyen is no less deserving, and moreover, it's his debut novel, which makes it such a wonderful win.

Extract from New York Times to view full article...

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