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Running for his life, Marcel Dupre, an escaped prisoner, carries a manuscript that could destroy the French government, and Jay McGraw, an express messenger for Wells Fargo, is hired to protect Marcel and get him safely across the West, but a bloodthristy band of men, determined to destroy both Marcel and the manuscript, stand in their way. Original.
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International intrigue and harrowing glimpses of life in an equatorial French prison are the stuff of this offbeat new western from Champlin (The Last Campaign). Marcel Dupre, imprisoned on the island of St. Joseph off the coast of French Guiana for more than 20 years, finally makes a desperate ocean escape in 1883. Making his way to California, he has in his possession something the French fear more than the prisoner himself-a memoir of his life in the hellish colony and his brutal tour before that in the Foreign Legion, which was sent to shore up the French puppet regime of Emperor Maximillian in Mexico. Wells Fargo is hired to find Dupre, who has disappeared, and deliver the manuscript to a publisher in New York. Jay McGraw, a lowly, inexperienced express-car messenger, is given the job. A wobbly French government, worried that the exposure will topple it, has recruited a gang of thugs to stop him. If he survives, however, McGraw will certainly have earned his spurs. The plot skips easily between Dupre and McGraw and California and Guiana. Champlin's indelible portrait of the Devil's Island-like prison launches this brisk and satisfying read.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Marcel Dupreis a prisoner in a French Guiana prison--ala Papillon. Seven escape attempts fail before he finally succeeds and finds his way to America. Dupre's journal, a potential political nightmare, piques the interest of New York publishers. It also stirs interest within the governments of France and Mexico. Dupre, a one-time member of the French Foreign Legion, not only can expose the cruelty of the French prison colony, but also knows some potentially embarrassing things about French support of Mexican monarch Maximilian. Jay McCraw, a young Wells Fargo agent, is assigned to Dupreand told to get the Frenchman and his manuscript to New York. The mismatched pair make their way to safety, dogged at every turn by agents hired to thwart them. It's a cat-and-mouse western saga with political and social overtones and two sharply drawn protagonists. A strong effort that deserves a strong recommendation. Wes Lukowsky
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Book Description Leisure Books, 2002. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0843949813