Thursday, October 20, 2016

Guns of the Timberlands by Louis L'Amour

(pb; 1955)

From the back cover:

"Clay Bell was a onetime drifter who'd grown weary of long trails and settled on the sweetest land he'd ever seen. For six years he fought Indians, rustlers and the wilderness itself to make the B-Bar ranch the prize of the Deep Creek Range. But now all that Clay has worked for is threatened. Jud Devitt, a ruthless speculator from the East, wants Bell's rich timberland -- and he doesn't care how he gets it. Backing Devitt are tame judges, crooked politicians and fifty of the toughest lumberjacks in the country. But Devitt's tried to stack the deck against the wrong man. Devitt doesn't know how to lose. Bell figures he's just the one to teach him."


Guns is another L'Amour gem of genre novel, sporting all the traits associated with the author's other works: it is a lean, smart, exciting and hard-to-set-down Western, with deftly sketched-out (later fleshed-out) characters, cut-to-it action and prose, and a reader-pleasing finale that delivers on the promise of its earlier excellence.  Like so many of L'Amour's other books, Guns is worth owning, the gold standard of Western genre writing.

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