Pretty Boy Floyd

Pretty Boy Floyd

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by Larry McMurtry, Diana Ossana
     
 

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The time is 1925. The place, St. Louis, Missouri. Charley Floyd, a good-looking, sweet-smiling country boy from Oklahoma working as a baker's helper at the Kroger Bakery, has just taken the big step that will make him, very shortly, a legend in his own lifetime: he has just robbed his first armored car. Charley is an irresistible invention, as American as Huck Finn, a…  See more details below

Overview

The time is 1925. The place, St. Louis, Missouri. Charley Floyd, a good-looking, sweet-smiling country boy from Oklahoma working as a baker's helper at the Kroger Bakery, has just taken the big step that will make him, very shortly, a legend in his own lifetime: he has just robbed his first armored car. Charley is an irresistible invention, as American as Huck Finn, a young man so charming that it's hard not to like him, even as he's robbing you at gunpoint. The women in his life - his tough-talking mentor and lover, Ma Ash (an older woman who recognizes just where Charley is headed, but can't stop him), his long-suffering, loyal wife, Ruby, his equally loyal girlfriend, Beulah, his mother, Mamie, and a good many more - are as charmed by him as the hill people of the Ozarks, who hide him out when he's on the run from the law. The only people who aren't charmed by Charley are the federal agents tracking him down, particularly his nemesis, J. Edgar Hoover, who sees in Pretty Boy Floyd a way of making his Bureau of Investigation famous. Written in collaboration by Larry McMurtry, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Lonesome Dove, and his screen-writing partner, Diana Ossana, Pretty Boy Floyd, soon to be a major motion picture, is as fast-paced as Charley Floyd's own career, which takes him from small-time robbery to national notoriety in a roller-coaster ride of bank heists, love affairs, shootings, and newspaper headlines that exemplifies both the celebrity hunger of the Depression era and the glamour that surrounded - and inevitably destroyed - young men like Charley Floyd, who chose, for the most part out of boredom with rural life, the outlaw trail. Set in the heart of America, Pretty Boy Floyd is at once a richly comic masterpiece and a kind of American tragedy about the price of fame the corruption of innocence, and the fatal consequences of becoming, however unwittingly, a hero. A major work of fiction, as profoundly American in its own way as McMurtry's o

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Pulitzer Prize winner McMurtry and screenwriter Ossana recreate the life of a charming St. Louis country boy who becomes a notorious bank robber during the Depression. (Aug.)
Library Journal
McMurtry (The Evening Star, LJ 6/1/92) and screenwriter Ossana initially wrote a screenplay based on the life of Pretty Boy Floyd and then decided to expand the story into a novel. The novel retains the tone of a script: it's heavy on dialog and has little character development. Pretty Boy Floyd took on the status of a folk hero in the 1920s, but here he comes across as a cartoon. He's a petty criminal out of control, surrounded by women who can't resist him and stupid accomplices. The women are mostly whores with hearts of gold or long-suffering wives, eager for a few special moments with their man. While this is certainly not McMurtry's best work, his reputation should elicit demand for this novel in public libraries. [Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club alternates.]-Jan Blodgett, Davidson Coll., N.C.
Dave Goldsmith
Excellent…without romanticizing the bank robber, the authors create a sympathetic picture of a farm boy who wanders into the crooked life and can't get back out…Let's hope this will not be the last effort in this fruitful collaboration.
Cleveland Plain Dealer
Bruce R. Simon
The prestigious talents of Larry McMurtry, Pulitzer Prize—winner, and Diana Offana have spun a convincing, forceful biographical novel, Pretty Boy Floyd, which sheds light upon Charley Floyd's brief, outlandish, and self—destructive life…
Richmond Times—Dispatch
From the Publisher
Andy Solomon Chicago Tribune An absorbing tale...vivid [and] vibrantly realized...

Dave Goldsmith The Plain Dealer Excellent...Without romanticizing the bank robber, the authors create a sympathetic picture of a farm boy who wanders into the crooked life and can't get back out.

John Skow Time Like Lonesome Dove, Pretty Boy Floyd beguiles the reader with a golden haze of lovely lies.

Bruce R. Simon Richmond Times-Dispatch The prestigious talents of Larry McMurtry, Pulitzer Prize winner, and Diana Ossana have spun a convincing, forceful biographical novel, Pretty Boy Floyd, which sheds light upon Charley Floyd's brief, outlandish, and self-destructive life.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780671891671
Publisher:
Pocket Books
Publication date:
07/01/1995
Pages:
464
Product dimensions:
4.08(w) x 6.66(h) x 0.96(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
Andy Solomon Chicago Tribune An absorbing tale...vivid [and] vibrantly realized...

Dave Goldsmith The Plain Dealer Excellent...Without romanticizing the bank robber, the authors create a sympathetic picture of a farm boy who wanders into the crooked life and can't get back out.

John Skow Time Like Lonesome Dove, Pretty Boy Floyd beguiles the reader with a golden haze of lovely lies.

Bruce R. Simon Richmond Times-Dispatch The prestigious talents of Larry McMurtry, Pulitzer Prize winner, and Diana Ossana have spun a convincing, forceful biographical novel, Pretty Boy Floyd, which sheds light upon Charley Floyd's brief, outlandish, and self-destructive life.

Meet 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.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Archer City, Texas
Date of Birth:
June 3, 1936
Place of Birth:
Wichita Falls, Texas
Education:
B.A., North Texas State University, 1958; M.A., Rice University, 1960. Also studied at Stanford University.

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Pretty Boy Floyd 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent
Anonymous More than 1 year ago