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Mass Market Paperback Leaving Cheyenne Book

ISBN: 0671753800

ISBN13: 9780671753801

Leaving Cheyenne

(Book #2 in the Thalia, Texas Series)

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Format: Mass Market Paperback

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Book Overview

The growth of the Old West is chronicled through the eyes of a Texas rancher, a cowboy, and the woman who is the mother of both their sons.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

Great McMurtry

Gideon Fry and his ranch hand Johnny McCloud are both in love with neighboring rancher Molly Taylor. The novel, in three parts, allows each character a chance to relate his and her take on this life-long three-way love affair. As in most of McMurtry's fiction, it's the woman who comes across as the one best in knowing exactly what she wants and in control of the situation. McMurtry is funny, poignant, and above all, interesting and entertaining in these pages.

Just another favorite from Larry McMurtry

I don't intend to write a full-on review; I figure there are enough here already. I just wanted to add my five-star rating to the overall, and summarize how I feel about this book.It took a while to get started, but it subtly endeared its characters to me so much that I finished it off in a three-hour sitting. Before I knew it I loved the characters, I loved the book, and I was sad that it was over. And I guess that's that, huh?

Growing old together. . .

Larry McMurtry grew up among ranchers and cowboys, and his familiarity with this rural world makes his early novels set in and around Thalia, Texas, genuinely alive with rich detail and believable characters. He knows this world as it's seen and understood by the people who live there, both young and old. Most revealingly (and colorfully) he knows how they really talk to each other and to themselves -- not in the stereotypical ways often ascribed to country people. You read "Leaving Cheyenne" slowly (the reference is to an old cowboy ballad, not the town in Wyoming), savoring the re-creation of real times and places, even when the story itself may move with no great urgency. The insights into characters and the observance of their behavior make them come alive on the page, and you simply enjoy the portrayals of them, their values, beliefs, and experiences. Part I of this novel is told from the point of view of Gideon, a rancher's son, about 20 years old, around the year 1920. There is his friend Johnny, from a neighboring ranch, and the two of them compete for the affection of Molly, a barefoot, independent-minded girl who willfully and unwisely marries another boy, an oilfield roustabout. In Part II, it is 20 years later, during WWII, and Molly, now widowed, remains friends with the middle-aged Gideon and Johnny, each of whom happens to have fathered one of her two sons. This part is told from her point of view. Gideon has married another woman (also unwisely) and has become a prosperous rancher, while Johnny works for him, content to be a happy-go-lucky cowboy. Molly lives alone, her sons off to war, and yearns for the company of each of her two old friends and lovers.In Part III, it is again 20 years later, about 1960 (the novel was published in 1962), and the three characters are now much older. Told from the point of view of Johnny, this section is farcically comical. Meanwhile, Gideon is haunted with guilt for his infidelities with Molly, and Johnny, as he says, has never lost a night's sleep feeling shame for anything he's ever done. Written in 20-year jumps, the novel gives a sense of how quickly life passes and how people remain the adolescents they once were even as they age. We see that choices made in haste cannot be undone and can leave a life-long legacy of regret. Yet there is also solace in affection, loyalty, and tenderness of heart. The novel celebrates the special quality of friendship among friends who have lived their whole lives together in the same small rural community. And over the years, there is the land -- and working the land -- to ground their rural lives with purpose.I recommend this novel, along with the author's "Horseman, Pass By," to anyone with an interest in cowboys and ranching. McMurtry captures rural western life and character in rich detail.

This book let me remember innocence and an open heart.

I read this book when it came out in the early 60's and loved it. I just re-read it to see if it would still have the same effect on me. I am pleased to report that it retains its wonderful writing, innocence, fine descriptions of nature,and that it opened my heart once again.

One of the greatest short novels of our time

Perhaps one of the least known(popular)but greatest works from McMurtry. Three life stories are woven thoughout this tale as this story picks up where Horeseman Pass By leaves off, with regard to character development. If you are a fan of Lonesome Dove, Moving On or All My Friends Are Going To Be Strangers, you cannot help but marvel at this earlier work which puts most modern works to shame.The characters and scenery are depicted with a subtle brilliance and the prose is magnificent. This book could be described as a blend of both Faulkner and McCarthy with regards to writing-you can feel the influence from the former and on the latter.Pardon my long winded comments. Buy the book and revel in it's brilliance.-
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