Comanche moon : a novel

by Larry McMurtry

Hardcover, 1997

Status

Available

Genres

Publication

New York : Simon & Schuster, c1997.

Description

We join Texas Rangers August McCrae and Woodrow F. Call in their middle years, just beginning to deal with the perplexing tensions of adult life - Gus and his great love, Clara Forsythe; Call and Maggie Tilton, the young whore who loves him - when they enlist with a Ranger troop in pursuit of Buffalo Hump, the great Comanche war chief; Kicking Wolf, the celebrated Comanche horse thief; and a deadly Mexican bandit king with a penchant for torture. Assisting the Rangers in their wild chase is the renowned Kickapoo tracker, Famous Shoes. Comanche Moon joins the twenty-year time line between Dead Man's Walk and Lonesome Dove, as we follow beloved heroes Gus and Call and their comrades-in-arms - Deets, Jake Spoon, and Pea Eye Parker - in their bitter struggle to protect an advancing Western frontier against the defiant Comanches, courageously determined to defend their territory and their way of life.At once realistic and yet vividly imagined, Comanche Moon is a giant of a book - written by one of America's most honored and distinguished novelists - and the keystone to a mighty achievement of storytelling, unparalleled for its sweep, its meticulous re-creation of the past, its sheer energy, and its celebration of life: an epic adventure full of heroism, tragedy, cruelty, courage, honor and betrayal, and the culmination of Larry McMurtry's peerless vision of the American West.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member silva_44
I have loved every book in this series. This one was particulary interesting because of the greusomeness of what happened to Inish Scull, and the loves and losses of Captains McCrae and Call.
LibraryThing member gingath
comanche moon was another excellent book from Larry McMurtry. as like the whole series of the lonesome dove books it gripped you from the very first page. the characters are brought alive from the pages.
LibraryThing member brose72
good story, descriptions of inhumanity that have remained with me over the years
LibraryThing member writestuff
Amazing series...recommend all books in this series.
LibraryThing member choochtriplem
The third novel (time line wise) in the Lonesome Dove series, and through the first three, the second best. The story continues after ‘Dead Man’s Walk’, and tells the story of Gus McCrae and Woodrow Cal. The story has the two men becoming Captains of the Texas Rangers, and also introduces Lonesome Dove characters Blue Duck, Pea Eye, Newt and Deets. The old stories that the gang tells in Lonesome Dove have their routes in this book of the series. McMurtry is an excellent story teller. His character description is un-believable. He tells what the characters are thinking, how they are affected by each other and the world around them. Reading this series from Lonesome Dove on did not ruin the story for me, but sticking to the time line in reading would have made it a truly epic experience. Onto ‘Streets of Laredo’.… (more)
LibraryThing member nbmars
The cover of Comanche Moon announces that it is the “final volume of the Lonesome Dove saga,” a series of four novels of the Old West by Larry McMurtry. It may have been the last one composed, but it is a prequel to its more famous ostensible sequel, Lonesome Dove.

Comanche Moon is a pretty good tale in its own right. In it, we meet most of the characters who achieved fame in the television miniseries of the earlier written Lonesome Dove. It is a long (752 pages) narrative that rarely drags. The principal characters, many of whom are Native Americans, are always interesting. McMurtry’s inhabitants (both red and white) of southwest Texas in the mid 19th century were extremely tough and often brutal. Nevertheless, some of them achieve a high level of dignity in McMurtry’s telling, even if they (the Comanches) are inclined to torture their captives or (the Texas rangers) hang their suspected criminal prisoners without trial.

When we enter the minds of the Indians (that’s what they were called in those days), we encounter spirits, witches, and omens. I don’t know whether the Indians back then actually thought that way, but the trope is useful as a way of emphasizing a very real difference in perception between them and their Texan enemies.

The meta-message behind the literal narrative is the end of the Comanche’s way of life as white settlers move in and drive away the great buffalo herds that were their primary source of food and clothing. Their great war chief, Buffalo Hump, leads one last great raid from the plains all the way to the Gulf of Mexico, but in the end even he realizes that not only he, but his entire culture, is dying.

A fine tale, well-told.

(JAB)
… (more)
LibraryThing member gypsysmom
Comanche Moon is the second book of the story of Woodrow Call and Augustus McCrae. The first book is Dead Man's Walk which tells the beginnings of the duo's life with the Texas Rangers. In it they meet up with the Comanche braves, Buffalo Hump and Kicking Wolf, for the first time. In this book they are still Texas Rangers and they have had many skirmishes with the Comanches but by the end of the book Buffalo Hump has died. Kicking Wolf is still alive at the end of the book but he knows that the time of the Comanches as free people is all but over. Woodrow's and Gus's time as Texas Rangers is almost over as well.

Neither man has been lucky in love. Gus's great love, Clara Forsythe, married someone else and moved to Nebraska. Maggie Tilton, the whore who loves Woodrow and bears his son, Newt, dies of tuberculosis while Woodrow and Gus are away on their final raid. Woodrow was never able to bring himself to marry Maggie or accept Newt as his son and he seems a much lesser man for that. Gus may be an alcoholic but at least he is capable of love and understands human emotion. I confess I didn't like Woodrow very much in this book.

I also found this book to dwell on brutality, especially the tortures of Ahumado, too much for my taste. I think I could have gotten the message that he was a bad man without quite so much detail.

However, I'm glad I have finally read this book as it ties together Dead Man's Walk with Lonesome Dove. I read Lonesome Dove years ago and my memory is not to fresh. I may have to go back and read it some day (as if there weren't enough books to read without re-reading ones I have already read!)
… (more)
LibraryThing member hailelib
Comanche Moon takes place between the novels Dead Man's Walk and Lonesome Dove and I initially chose it because of the Spur Award but it also fit the RandomCat and the AlphaCat.

Although long and a little hard to get into I really did enjoy McMurtry's story and may eventually read one of the other books in the Lonesome Dove series. There were two reasons why it went slowly at first: the first short chapters were each about a different character or small group of characters and so the narrative seemed to be jumping around a lot until one got them all sorted out; then my husband found the video of the TV production at the library and wanted to watch it right away (mostly because Call was played by Karl Urban and McCrae by Steve Zahn). This was an interesting experience but I did slow down on the book until we had watched all three parts of the video. One thing I particularly noticed - most of the dialog was lifted straight out of the novel although there were some cuts and rearranging of some scenes.

Comanche Moon begins with Gus and Woodrow as Texas Rangers and follows their lives before and after the War Between the States. Much of their 'rangering' involves keeping the Comanches at bay and pushing them back in order to protect the settlers coming west. McMurtry also gives us the point of view of the Comanches through characters such as Buffalo Hump and Kicking Wolf. The descriptions of the Texas countryside and life in the city of Austin at that time were also very good. The novel became a real page-turner in both Part Two and Part Three and I would recommend it.
… (more)

Language

Barcode

3524
Page: 0.2153 seconds