Seven Rivers West: A Novel

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Overview

Cecil Roop is a young man who has left his wife and children to head out to the Western frontier in the 1880s. He is in search of a grizzly cub to bring back East to show on the vaudeville circuit, but along the way becomes obsessed with Big Foot legends, and his focus shifts to the hunt for the mythical creature. On his quest he picks up eccentric companions: Sutton, a circus performer in search of gold; Roy, a one-armed, toothless gold hunter; Margaret, an Indian woman; and a pack of loyal dogs. Full of high ...
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Overview

Cecil Roop is a young man who has left his wife and children to head out to the Western frontier in the 1880s. He is in search of a grizzly cub to bring back East to show on the vaudeville circuit, but along the way becomes obsessed with Big Foot legends, and his focus shifts to the hunt for the mythical creature. On his quest he picks up eccentric companions: Sutton, a circus performer in search of gold; Roy, a one-armed, toothless gold hunter; Margaret, an Indian woman; and a pack of loyal dogs. Full of high adventure, grizzly attacks, and ambushes, and set against the backdrop of the stupendous natural wonders of the West at the turn of the century, this novel is at once a picaresque adventure and the exuberant story of an unprecedented quest.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Hoagland's essays, travel books and novels prove him to be perhaps the finest nature writer in America. His latest novel, an inventive, picaresque romp through the American wilderness around the turn of the century, features the adventures of three charmingly eccentric characters as they make their way from the Dakota plains to the Rockies. They are Cecil, who is in search of a grizzly bear cub to train fora vaudeville act; Charley, a cagey old trapper looking for gold; and Sutton, whose specialized vocation involves jumping from towers into watertubs. On their way they pick up a couple of Indian women and encounter a multitude of wild animals, including bears, wolves, buffalo and moose, not to mention the occasional white man almost equally wild, and finally (or is it a hallucination?) a Bigfoot that makes Cecil forget about catching a bear cub. It's an entertaining tale, rich to bursting with descriptions of wildlife as vivid and authentic as an Audubon painting. First serial rights to Esquire. (September 30)
Library Journal
This is not a fast-paced Western but a deliberately written account of a trek through the mountains of the West with time taken to appreciate the beauties of nature and to observe the wildlife. Cecil Roop goes west in search of a young grizzly to train for vaudeville. With him is Sutton, a skilled high diver, who seeks gold. As they proceed they acquire companions, human and animal, most of whom fall victim to the dangers of the wild. The characters are fascinating, the writing is excellent. A novel for readers who enjoy nature, with all its beauties and hazards, this will please Hoagland's many fans. Sister Avila, Acad . of the Holy Angels, Minneapolis
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585748655
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 8/1/2003
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 4.90 (w) x 9.06 (h) x 0.77 (d)

Meet the Author

EDWARD HOAGLAND, one of America's most distinguished writers, is the author of fifteen books, including Walking the Dead Diamond River (page TK), The Courage of Turtles, Red Wolves and Black Bears (page TK), African Calliope, The Tugman's Passage (page TK), Balancing Acts (page TK), and Tigers & Ice (page TK). He lives in Vermont and teaches in the English Department at Bennington College.
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Table of Contents

Part 1 Horse Swim 11
Chapter 1 Horse Swim 13
Chapter 2 Red Town 30
Chapter 3 The Railhead 39
Chapter 4 The Jump 53
Part 2 The Prairie 69
Chapter 5 The Margaret 71
Chapter 6 The Appleman 88
Chapter 7 The Sarsis 111
Part 3 The Rivers 125
Chapter 8 The Swim 127
Chapter 9 The Foothills 150
Chapter 10 The Beaver House 163
Chapter 11 Charley's Place 177
Part 4 The Mountains 197
Chapter 12 The Thloadennis 199
Chapter 13 Many Berries 232
Part 5 The Bigfoot 253
Chapter 14 At Ouddo's 255
Chapter 15 The Fourth Creek of the Eeejookgook 271
Chapter 16 Floating Out 297
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2005

    One Mighty Fabulous Read!!!

    I bought a copy of Seven Rivers West at a used books sale at my own public library & just happened to start reading it a few days ago. Wow! What a rare find, what a treasure! A swashbuckling, no holds bared, uncensored, wild, exciting, deeply rich tall tale of the West in the early 1880's. I real slots of Westerns and have started to write some, too, and once in a while I come across a writer, new to me, one that I greatly admire. The author, Edward Hoagland, is such a writer, one that I'll be searching out, looking for more of his Westerns to read. A combination of fact and fiction, of fantasy and reality, Hoagland in some way kind of reminds me of the great fiction of Isaac Singer. The book too, in a way, reminds me of Lonesome Dove...at any rate, it is the story of a bunch of very odd characters who are headed into the wild mountains of the Rockies, in search of love, gold, adventure, and grizzly bears to catch and tame. Each character in the book is flawed, is real, is quite human, and Hoagland's writing is packed with interesting detail that only one who has lived close to the wild could appreciate and put on paper. I highly recommend that anyone who happens to see this review of mine, that they get a hold of a copy of Seven Rivers West, then put aside some serious time, as you'll need it. This book will hook you, hold you, and charm you.

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