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Set in the late 19th century, Lonesome Dove is an adventurous story of a cattle drive from Texas to Montana. The narrative centers around two friends: Augustus McCrae, a reluctant rancher who has a way with women, and W. F. Call, whose talent for leadership conceals a secret sorrow. For Gus, Call, and the others who join the journey, the cattle drive is not only a daring and, perhaps, foolhardy endeavor, it comes to represent American dreams of the West.
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Larry McMurtry, in books like The Last Picture Show, has depicted the modern degeneration of the myth of the American West. The subject of Lonesome Dove, cowboys herding cattle on a great trail-drive, seems like the very stuff of that cliched myth, but McMurtry bravely tackles the task of creating meaningful literature out of it. At first the novel seems the kind of anti-mythic, anti-heroic story one might expect: the main protagonists are a drunken and inarticulate pair of former Texas Rangers turned horse rustlers. Yet when the trail begins, the story picks up an energy and a drive that makes heroes of these men. Their mission may be historically insignificant, or pointless--McMurtry is smart enough to address both possibilities--but there is an undoubted valor in their lives. The result is a historically aware, intelligent, romantic novel of the mythic west that won the 1986 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.About the Author:
Larry McMurtry is the author of twenty-nine novels, including the Pulitzer Prize–winning Lonesome Dove, three memoirs, two collections of essays, and more than thirty screenplays. He lives in Archer City, Texas.
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