The Feud: The Hatfields and McCoys: The True Story

The Feud: The Hatfields and McCoys: The True Story

by Dean King
3.8 42

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The Feud: The Hatfields and McCoys: The True Story 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 42 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a great combination of painstaking research and forceful prose. I have been in many of those hollers over the years, but never with much thought of the early, pre-coal, history of the place. The feud is often mentioned. Everyone knows about it, but no one seems to know much about it. This book fills that gap and is a great, hard-to-put-down read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this book very much. It was very interesting and moved along at a good pace. I had long heard about this feud and often wondered exactly what it was about. Obviously, being in a war changes people, and they live with the buried emotional baggage of killing other people for a long time without realizing what strong emotions and reactions stem from trying to rid oneself of the damage. Not that war is not often necessary. Enslavement would be worse. A map would have been nice, though with this narrative. It was hard to keep the locations straight when following the interaction of the people and their relatives and friends.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Unlike other books written of the famous feud this one delves further into the history of the two clans. There was a time when the two families were friends and lived companionably until the misunderstanding which led to the lengthy feud. Great piece of American history.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book's chronological order helps the reader understand the before, during and after of the Feud by painting a picture.  Dean supports this picture with facts from many sources.  The quotes from interviews with people who lived during and after the feud coupled with the stories does an amazing job of making the reader feel like he understands the times and those involved.  I love the personal connection through the words of the eyewitnesses.  This separates the reality from rumor.  Dean also found previously unearthed evidence and never before heard stories that help everyone understand more than just the feud but what occurred at the end of the feud and after the feud. 
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite Dean King, author of The Feud: The Hatfields and McCoys: The True Story, digs deep into the history of the feud and both families to find the truth behind the legend. The legend begins much like Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Rosanna McCoy and Johnse Hatfield were attracted to each other but their families were filled with hatred. The irony in this story is the similarity in character of both families. They lived in the Appalachian Mountains and they had little use for the government. While the legend depicts love as the cause of the feud, in reality that had little to do with the animosity between the two families. I’m not sure the Hatfields or the McCoys knew why they hated each other. They were willing to murder in a dispute over a hog, burn cabins, and execute young men including a mentally handicapped male. It seems that in the mountains there is a different type of law and justice, one mandated by the most accurate shot and bitter hatred. Over the last few years there has been a lot of interest in this mountain feud. Say the word 'feud' and many people think of the famous feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys. We’ve taken fact and romanticized it into legend when in truth it was a bloody nightmare. Dean King takes the romance out of the story and stands on the facts. The Feud is one of the best researched and most comprehensive books on this topic. The author has stated the facts without taking sides. Kudos to Dean King.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is well-told history. The material has a natural drama to it. King wisely preserves this tension in the primary and secondary sources while adding a sprinkling of his own refinements. He enlivens the history without sensationalizing it--a tough balance. So many biographers and historians nowadays spoil the soup with too many spices. Several other narrative techniques recommend King's latest book. For one, he chooses his paragraph breaks wisely. They preserve clarity while driving the story forward. Second, his word choice is masterful. He chooses words from the Anglo-Saxon word bank and includes local slang and kennings. These give teeth and authenticity to the writing. Third, he aptly balances quotes from the feud principals with his own descriptions. The quotes are inserted in the scenes where they are most informative and punchy. Also, King refrains from interrupting his set pieces with interpretation. Interpretation happens selectively, inviting the reader to render his or her own judgments. Fourth, the frequent gunfighting is told realistically. Fear on both sides of the feud is in evidence. King brings it a sense of loss to the legend, too. There is a sense of wildness, fertility, and danger in the landscape. Finally, the book works as an entertaining group biography. Devil Anse Hatfield stands out from the pages. He is a a regular folk legend like Davy Crockett or Daniel Boone. I look forward to more works from this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So different when compared to the movie. These people doled out their own kind of justice. Vicious and opportunistic killers. I doubt honor had much to do with this feud. I think most of the violence was due what the Civil War (North and South home guard) did to each others families.
Jim_Morris More than 1 year ago
You always here about the Hatfields and the McCoys whenever there is a dispute. However, I had no idea the extent to which it really went to. Or, that in 2001 it was still kind of going on and only put on hold by an agreement both families signed to honor those who died on 9/11. It's amazing the way the Hatfields held off law enforcement and impacted local and state elections to their favor. This book is well written and gives a great account of incidents from both families point of view along with those documented in court papers and goes behind the scenes to search for the truth of stories printed in the papers both local and national.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
U. Grant Browning…well, more accurately, I am Ulysses Grant Browning, aka the great, great-grandson of Devil Anse Hatfield.  Our version as to how Anderson Hatfield was assigned the non de plume of “Devil” was because, as a captain in the confederate army, he and his band of Logan Wildcats, although greatly outnumbered, won a battle at “Devils Knob” and was forever after called “Devil Anse.” As his great, great-grandson, I have read every book I could find about the feud, and Dean King’s book on this subject is the best written and fairest treatment of this subject by far.  It is not like the writer who wrote an unbiased history of the war between The North and the South from a Southern Point of View. Dean’s book is painfully fair to the descendants of both the Hatfields and the McCoys.  This book is a history book which reads like a novel. Thank you, Dean, for finally bringing to us a basis from which we may continue pursuing this subject from a sound foundation.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A thorough and riveting history of America's most famous feud.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I WON THIS BOOK FOR FREE ON GOODREADS FIRSTREADS GIVEAWAY This was an interesting book. It covers the infamous feud between the Hatfields and McCoys during the 1800s. The author spoke with descendants of these families, so you get some of the family stories that were handed down through the generations. The way this feud was portrayed on television varies, on some important parts, from what the author actually found out through historic records and information from descendants. I gave it 3 stars, because I felt that, in certain chapters, there was an excess of information that didn't necessarily pertain to the actual feud or the families. Overall, I found this book to be an interesting read, especially if you are a history buff.
jmgallen More than 1 year ago
Most of us have heard of the Hatfield-McCoy Feud but know little about it. “The Feud” brings the events to life as the well as the loves and hates of the feudists who lived them. The setting is along the Tug River where it forms the border between Kentucky and West Virginia during the post-Civil War period. The characters are the two families and their allies. The nanms are entertaining: Devil Ans, Preacher Ans, Good Elias, Bad Elias, Cotton Tops and Crazy James to mention a few. The causes? No one knows for sure but the Civil War (McCoys-Union, Hatfields-Confederate), hogs, love affairs and possible DNA abnormalities have all been suggested. The events involve ambushes (some the result of mistaken identity) home attacks, kidnappings, extralegal executions, brawls, stabbings and shootings. Spikes in crimes were observed during election campaigns and days. I was fascinated by the interaction of the feudists with the law. I was surprised by the importance of alliances of local officials and the off and on involvement of police, prosecutors, courts and politicians in what bordered on a war between Kentucky and West Virginia. The Feud did not exist in a vacuum and feudist was not an occupation. I occurred in the hill country of logging, farming and moonshining. In the end it was economic development that compelled authorities to pressure for a termination of the raging national embarrassment to their states. Author Dean King has produced a book that is informative and a good read. Near the beginning he tells of being run off from a Feud site by gunfire before obtaining the cooperation of relatives in the area. So far as I can tell he seems to have presented a balanced picture. This has been confirmed by reviewers from the area and families. He makes excellent use of the vernacular in dialogue. Although The Feud happened over a century ago there is something modern about it. Just as Romeo and Juliet are reflected in West Side Story, so the mountain feud bears a resemblance to modern urban gang warfare. I enjoyed it and am sure that you will also.
ksprings More than 1 year ago
I have heard about the feud between the Hatfields and the McCoys since I was little. Until now, I had no real appreciation of that event or how it impacted the history of Kentucky and West Virginia. Dean King takes the reader through the events that lead up to the death of one Hatfield and the revenge killing of three McCoys and how events spiraled out of control as authorities tried to gain control of—or profit from—the violence. Dean King draws upon years of original research, using previously unknown evidence and interviews with surviving relatives to separate fact from fiction about the most famous feud in American history.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read many books on the Feud over the years and there is no question that this is the best book hands down on the reasons for the blood shed. All of the information is backed up with notes for reference. If you have ever wanted to read about the Hatfield and McCoy feud this is the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It's interesting to read about the various facts of the Hatfields and McCoys! However, I felt that the book goes off on some unnecessary side stories. They're interesting to learn, but I felt they weren't necessary to the overall story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book reads like a history book. Lots of names and dates but the content is excellent depicting how the feud most likely started and continued through many years.
ChGlowie More than 1 year ago
Great investigation into previously unknown facts. Wish there had been maps and better identification of locals.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I found it very interesting and informative however there were so many characters that it was difficult to determine who was who.
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