The Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard

The Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard

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by Elmore Leonard, Henry Rollins
     
 

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From Elmore Leonard, the author who has influenced more writers than anyother, come two thrilling stories of law in the Old West, upheld by the barrel of a six-gun.

"Three-ten to Yuma:" Deputy Paul Scallen will earn his one hundred fifty dollars if he can get his prisoner Jim Kidd on the train to Yuma Prison. But the members of Kidd's gang have determined

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Overview

From Elmore Leonard, the author who has influenced more writers than anyother, come two thrilling stories of law in the Old West, upheld by the barrel of a six-gun.

"Three-ten to Yuma:" Deputy Paul Scallen will earn his one hundred fifty dollars if he can get his prisoner Jim Kidd on the train to Yuma Prison. But the members of Kidd's gang have determined that Scallen won't live long enough to make the Three-Ten to Yuma.

"Saint with a Six-Gun:" Bobby Valdez will hang in the morning and young Lyall Quinlan is proud to guard him through the night. But Valdez doesn't seem like a cold-blooded killer and his request for last rites may just set him free ... or get them both killed.

Performed by Henry Rollins, these classics of bullets and bad men demonstrate the superb talent for language and gripping narrative that made Elmore Leonard one of the most acclaimed writers of our time.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Simultaneous with the Morrow hardcover. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Los Angeles Times
“Even the earliest of his western yarns show Leonard to be a master storyteller.”
USA Today
“Leonard has penned some of the best western fiction ever.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060757656
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
11/02/2004
Edition description:
Abridged, 1 CD, 1 hr. 10 min.
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 5.06(h) x 0.39(d)

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The Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard

Trail of the Apache

Original title: Apache Agent
Argosy, December 1951

Under the thatched roof ramada that ran the length of the agency office, Travisin slouched in a canvas-backed chair, his boots propped against one of the support posts. His gaze took in the sun-beaten, gray adobe buildings, all one-story structures, that rimmed the vacant quadrangle. It was a glaring, depressing scene of sun on rock, without a single shade tree or graceful feature to redeem the squat ugliness. There was not a living soul in sight. Earlier that morning, his White Mountain Apache charges had received their two-weeks' supply of beef and flour. By now they were milling about the cook fires in front of their wickiups, eating up a two-weeks' ration in two days. Most of the Indians had built their wickiups three miles farther up the Gila, where the flat, dry land began to buckle into rock-strewn hills. There the thin, sparse Gila cottonwoods grew taller and closer together and the mesquite and prickly pear thicker. And there was the small game that sustained them when their government rations were consumed.

At the agency, Travisin lived alone. By actual count there were forty-two Coyotero Apache scouts along with the interpreter, Barney Fry, and his wife, a Tonto woman, but as the officers at Fort Thomas looked at it, he was living alone. There is no question that to most young Eastern gentlemen on frontier station, such an alien means of existence would have meant nothing more than a very slow way to die, with boredom reading the services. But, of course, they were not Travisin.


From Whipple Barracks, through San Carlos and on down to Fort Huachuca, it went without argument that Eric Travisin was the best Apache campaigner in Arizona Territory. There was a time, of course, when this belief was not shared by all and the question would pop up often, along the trail, in the barracks at Fort Thomas, or in a Globe barroom. Barney Fry's name would always come up then -- though most discounted him for his one-quarter Apache blood. But that was a time in the past when Eric Travisin was still new; before the sweltering sand-rock Apache country had burned and gouged his features, leaving his gaunt face deepchiseled and expressionless. That was while he was learning that it took an Apache to catch an Apache. So, for all practical purposes, he became one. Barney Fry taught him everything he knew about the Apache; then he began teaching Fry. He relied on no one entirely, not even Fry. He followed his own judgment, a judgment that his fellow officers looked upon as pure animal instinct. And perhaps they were right. But Travisin understood the steps necessary to survival in an enemy element. They weren't included in Cook's "Cavalry Tactics": you learned them the hard way, and your being alive testified that you had learned well. They said Travisin was more of an Apache than the Apaches themselves. They said he was cold-blooded, sometimes cruel. And they were uneasy in his presence; he had discarded his cotillion demeanor the first year at Fort Thomas, and in its place was the quiet, pulsing fury of an Apache war dance.

This was easy enough for the inquisitive to understand. But there was another side to Eric Travisin.

For three years he had been acting as agent at the Camp Gila subagency, charged with the health and welfare of over two hundred White Mountain Apaches. And in three years he had transformed nomadic hostiles into peaceful agriculturalists. He was a dismounted cavalry offi- cer who sometimes laid it on with the flat of his saber, but he was completely honest. He understood them and took their side, and they respected him for it. It was better than San Carlos.

That's why the conversation at the officers' mess at Fort Thomas, thirty miles southwest, so often dwelled on him: he was a good Samaritan with a Spencer in his hand. They just didn't understand him. They didn't realize that actually he was following the line of least resistance. He was accepting the situation as it was and doing the best job with the means at hand. To Travisin it was that simple; and fortunately he enjoyed it, both the fighting and the pacifying. The fact that it made him a better cavalryman never entered his mind. He had forgotten about promotions. By this time he was too much a part of the savage everyday existence of Apache country. He looked at the harsh, rugged surroundings and liked what he saw.

He shuffled his feet up and down the porch pole and sank deeper into his camp chair. Suddenly in his breast he felt the tenseness. His ears seemed to tingle and strain against an unnatural stillness, and immediately every muscle tightened. But as quickly as the strange feeling came over him, he relaxed. He moved his head no more than two inches, and from the corner of his eye saw the Apache crouched on hands and knees at the corner of the ramada. The Indian crept like an animal across the porch, slowly and with his back arched. A pistol and a knife were at his waist, but he carried no weapon in his hands. Travisin moved his right hand across his stomach and eased open the holster flap. Now his arms were folded across his chest, with his right hand gripping the holstered pistol. He waited until the Apache was less than six feet away before he wheeled from his chair and pushed the longbarreled revolving pistol into the astonished Apache's face.

Travisin grinned at the Apache and holstered the handgun. "Maybe someday you'll do it."

The Indian grunted angrily. With victory almost in his grasp he had failed again. Gatito, sergeant of Travisin's Apache scouts, was an old man, the best tracker in the Army, and it cut his pride deeply that he was never able to win their wager ...

The Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard. Copyright © by Elmore Leonard. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Meet the Author

Elmore Leonard wrote forty-five novels and nearly as many western and crime short stories across his highly successful career that spanned more than six decades. Some of his bestsellers include Road Dogs, Up in Honey’s Room, The Hot Kid, Mr. Paradise, Tishomingo Blues, and the critically acclaimed collection of short stories Fire in the Hole. Many of his books have been made into movies, including Get Shorty, Out of Sight, and Rum Punch, which became Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie BrownJustified, the hit series from FX, is based on Leonard’s character Raylan Givens, who appears in Riding the Rap, Pronto, Raylan and the short story “Fire in the Hole”. He was a recipient of the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, the Lifetime Achievement Award from PEN USA, and the Grand Master Award of the Mystery Writers of America. He was known to many as the ‘Dickens of Detroit’ and was a long-time resident of the Detroit area.

Henry Rollins joined the band Black Flag in 1981. In 1986 he formed the Rollins Band. His publishing company, 2-13-61, has released more than a dozen books, several CDs and DVDs of his own, and the work of others such as Henry Miller, Iggy Pop and Nick Cave. He has performed in several movies and TV shows including Bad Boys II, Heat, and Drew Carey.

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Brief Biography

Hometown:
Bloomfield Village, Michigan
Date of Birth:
October 11, 1925
Place of Birth:
New Orleans, Louisiana
Education:
B.Ph., University of Detroit, 1950
Website:
http://www.elmoreleonard.com/

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Complete Western Stories of Elmore Leonard 3.8 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 20 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I remember reading men's "outdoor" type magazines when I was a boy growing up in the 1950s and early 1960s. These magazines featured short stories about life in the old west in the 1800s. By today's standards the plots seem much simpler, but the situations and choices that the characters faced were just as difficult and fraught with danger as today's dilemmas. There were problems dealing with outlaws, Indians, animal predators, and of course nature itself. Writers like Elmore Leonard would capture these adventures in stories that could be read and enjoyed in short intervals of time. These stories would provide the reader with the best sort of escape from everyday life that one could imagine. Full of colorful descriptions, the stories would make you feel as though you were in that place at that time -- they would transport you to another existence, and encourage you to imagine what it must have been like to have been there. I am thoroughly enjoying this collection of stories on my Nook E-reader. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys stories about people who lived in America's old west.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was such a fun collection to read. Leonard is simply the best.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you like westerns,you will like this!
Sannois More than 1 year ago
Despite growing up in the American West, I didn't discover Westerns as a genre until college. I hadn't read any Westerns before, but I picked this book up just because it had 3:10 to Yuma and I liked both movie adaptations. Plus I figured I could spend just as much on one book with one story, or get this book with dozens of stories. It felt like I was getting more for my money. I started reading this book on a vacation, but didn't finish until I got back home and went back to work. The stories are short enough, I could get a quick fix on my lunch break. It only took a couple of weeks to finish reading like that. I loved these stories so much, I started looking into other Westerns and was disappointed by more legendary names like Zane Grey and Louis L'Amour. Elmore Leonard has set the standard for Western fiction for me. Even if Westerns aren't "your thing," these are still great stories I'd recommend to anyone who appreciates a good, sometimes short, adventure.
westwoodsman More than 1 year ago
Elmore Leonard fans will love this book. The short stories are classic western genre along with Louis Lamour. Perfect for the quick read any time.
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I've been a fan of Elmore Leonard's for many years. I couldn't get past the first story , because of the racist descriptions of Indians.