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A Review of the book Comanche Moon
A must read western
It is funny how seeing one thing turns into a domino effect and it leads you to another thing. In 1989 a television mini-series came on the air and was an instant success. The name of the mini-series was Lonesome Dove it had a great cast that included Tommy Lee Jones, Robert Duvall, Diane Lane, Angelica Huston, and Ricky Schroder among many other stars. The movie led me to the book Lonesome Dove which was written in 1985. This was a wonderful novel that introduced us to many colorful characters and was set in the old West. I discovered later that there were more books that had these characters in them.
I found out that even though Lonesome Dove was published first it was not the book that should have been read first. The other books that contain the characters that were mentioned in Lonesome Dove are:
Deadman’s Walk written in 1995, Street’s of Laredo 2000, Comanche Moon 1997 and last, but not least, Lonesome Dove 1985.
If you want to read the books in the proper sequence begin with :
Deadman’s Walk which takes place in the 1840’s
Comanche Moon which takes place in the 1850’s-1860’s
Lonesome Dove which takes place in the late 1870’s
Streets of Laredo set in the early 1890’s.
The book Comanche Moon was written by Larry McMurtry in 1997. In this story we follow a group of Texas Rangers out looking for Indians and Bandits. The author lets into the camps of not only the rangers, but the Indians themselves.
The characters found in Comanche Moon are:
Augustus McCrae- This is Augustus early in his career with the Texas Rangers. He loves adventure, women, talking, poker, and hanging out with his friend Woodrow Call. His mind is also on a woman named Clara who he has asked to marry numerous times without success.
Woodrow Call- He is a serious man who is all business. Being a Texas Ranger is his whole life. He does have a soft spot for a woman named Maggie, but she is a prostitute and he can’t bring himself to admit he loves her.
Clara Allen- She is a store keeper’s daughter and helps to mind the store. She has ideas and is a little ahead of her time. She loves Augustus, but she isn’t sure things will work out between them.
Maggie Tilton-Is the Woman of the Evening. She has had a hard life and the one bright spot is a man named Woodrow Call. Will she ever convince him to marry her?
Jake Spoon- He is younger than most of the Texas Rangers, but he is soon grows up quickly thanks to the Captain’s wife.
Inez Scull- She is the Captain’s wife and quite a handful. She is impulsive, quick tempered, and she always gets what she wants whether it is an item at a store, or a young man who catches her fancy.
Inish Scull- Is the Captain of the Texas Rangers. He is college educated and finds it hard at times to communicate with the men under his leadership. He loves the thrill of the hunt and is very brave in the face of danger.
Famous Shoes-He is a Kickapoo tracker who helps the Rangers to get through the Indian territory. He comes and goes as he pleases and seems to have a lot of common sense.
Buffalo Hump- Is an older Comanche Chief he is wise and respected by everyone in his tribe except for his son Blue Duck.
Blue Duck- He is Buffalo Hump’s son. He is part Indian and part Mexican. He has a bad temper. He wants to be as good an Indian as his father, but he doesn’t want to work for it. He only looks out for himself and has no compassion for anyone.
The novel Comanche Moon is very exciting. It takes you along for the ride with the Rangers as they brave the cold, and more importantly the Indians. The reader gets to also hang out with the Indians and get their viewpoint on how things are going in the story line. We also get to visit the town’s settler’s and see that they have issues of their own to deal with.
Larry McMurtry has created characters that you will care about and plots that will have you wanting to read even more. It is a beautiful look at young America and it is hard to believe how dangerous it was to live in those times. If you are a fan of the Lonesome Dove television mini-series or the book Lonesome Dove you will love Comanche Moon. It shows the main characters in the book in their younger years and helps you see why the characters behave as they do in the Lonesome Dove book. Comanche Moon is a great story with unforgettable characters. You will like spending the time with these Texas Rangers.