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Crossfire Trail

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  1,299 ratings  ·  53 reviews
Rafe Caradec—gambler, wanderer, soldier of fortune—was as hard a man as the battlefields and waterfronts of Latin America could fashion, but he was as good as his word. As Charles Rodney lay dying in a dank ship’s fo’c’sle, Rafe swore to make sure that Rodney’s Wyoming ranch went to his daughter, Ann. In Painted Rock, Wyoming, Caradec found land for a man to love, miles of ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published July 1st 1997 by Bantam (first published 1954)
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Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtryTrue Grit by Charles PortisBlood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West by Cormac McCarthyBury My Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee BrownAll the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy
Best Westerns
139th out of 679 books — 924 voters
The Virginian by Owen WisterDeadman's Fury by Linell JeppsenMorgan by Frank RoderusCrossfire Trail by Louis L'AmourThe Devils Gunslinger by Chet Cunningham
3rd out of 28 books — 10 voters

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Community Reviews

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I continue on my journey to honor my late father by reading all of the books written by his favorite author, Louis L'Amour. This one, Crossfire Trail, had a unique beginning with our hero being shanghaied from the west coast and forced into servitude for a year on a ship. The hero eventually escapes from the ship and heads to Wyoming to help the wife and child of a man he befriended while on the ship. There are good guys, bad guys, con artists, Native Americans, horses, gun-play, cattle and all ...more
Classic Louis L'Amour. Woman in danger, check. Five-page fistfight, check. Hero is sailor-mercenary-cowboy, check. Sioux as dangerous-but-honorable plot devices. Classic.
Erin (Paperback stash) *is juggle-reading*
My first western. It was okay, pretty short book. Also was tired when reading it so that may have something to do with it. Like the good guys in the story, dependable interesting sorts. It was pretty much non-stop action and the lack of break from that was a bit taxing. Louis L'Amour writes well, but sometimes too dependent with the exclamation marks. There was a plot point that bugged me throughout the entire thing -- why in the world would they get in trouble and hung for mutiny? It was clearl ...more
I've started to read all of the Louis L'Amour books by publication order and Crossfire Trail is one of three originally published in 1954. Like previous L'Amour books I've read I liked it. They all are pretty predictable and follow a similar storyline with the location and names changing but the pattern is usually a lone tall dark stranger (our hero) rides into town and runs up against the local big wig be it a ranch tycoon, timber baron, etc., and a showdown ensues with the stranger standing up ...more
I might be primarily known for my love of contemporary YA, but everyone has their guilty pleasure genre, and mine is the good ole' Western. I don't know; the way these stories completely ignore having a message, but still champion values of right and wrong, while crafting characters just deep enough to be rooted for, is irresistible.

Louis L'Amour is the master, and 'Crossfire Trail' was one of his on-going serialized stories. This isn't meant to be groundbreaking fiction. There's the stoic cowb
This is another Louis L'Amour book that was originally written as a serial for a magazine, which means that it was published in parts and each issue of the magazine would publish a part. Serial novels (published like this were popular in the 1940's and 50's). These novels were full of action and not character development because readers wanted action and because people had to wait until the next magazine came out, there needed to be plenty of action for people to want to read the next section.

Rob Smith
A great tale wrapped in all that L'Amour knows how to unwind. This is far simpler than many of his tales and shows how able he was at assembling a book that has the reader fully involved even in a shorter story. The core of the story is predictable. Other parts are laid out to satisfy the predictability.

The writing is very good and the characters well crafted. Though the bad guys are a bit less detailed than in other books. Though that means the characters have far more definition than most book
This is pure noir. James M. Cain and Louis L'Amour wrote the same genre. L'Amour is probably slightly more idealistic and less cynical, but this is satisfying. The fastest gun lives in harmony with nature and people, removes corruption in Painted Rock and rallies the town into a functioning entity. His potential for stability only occurs when the system works for everybody. He stands for a woman's rights in a town that figures she'll get that through marriage. Written in 1954, I think L'Amour wa ...more
Gable Holyoak
When I first checked out Crossfire Trails from the library I thought it would be boring. L'Amour's brilliant writing proved me wrong. This book was a fantastic Wild west adventure that I absolutely enjoyed. From the death of Caradec's friend, to the race for oil, to the fight between good and evil, I recommend this story for anyone who needs an adventure to the western state of Wyoming. Louis L'Amour is a writing genius and I would definitely read more of his books.
Philip Mizener
This is a classic Louis L'Amour tale, with a diverse cast of characters, some honest, some brutal, some quiet, some explosively violent. Once again, we get the raw flavour of a time of expansion and collision of world's : the honest landholder with the ruthless thief and murderer, the Sioux tribes with the honest as well as the dishonest settler, the brutal elements of winter against the hopes and provisions of warrior and rancher, and the true tales of the heart against the deceptions of greed.
Listened for Review (Random House Audio)
Overall Rating: 3.75
Character Rating: 4.00
Story Rating: 3.50

Audio Rating: 3.50 (not part of the overall rating

Read It File It Review: I love Louis L'Amour and while Crossfire Trail isn't my favorite book by him, it is still a good read or reread. I picked it up again because I was curious how it would do in audio form.

Audio Thoughts:
Narrated By Jason Culp / Length: 5 hrs and 3 mins

Listen up: I think Jason Culp has an excellent voice and I will be tryin
Fredrick Danysh
Rafe Caradee had been shanghaied with Charles Rodney. When Rodney was dying off the coast of California he extracted a promise that Rafe would jump ship and help his daughter save the family ranch even giving him a deed to the ranch. The daughter doesn't trust him and crooks are trying to take over the ranch.
I've read the story a couple of times, but somehow listening made it particularly clear that Our Hero Rafe Caradec does an awful lot of riding here and there and back again, much of it in a massive blizzard. Jason Culp has a nice voice, but he's rather a slow reader.
I want 3.5 stars! I enjoy Louis L'Amour as a writer. This one was a little odd for me because I'd seen the movie first and it was hard initially to wrap my head around the differences. The story is about Rafe who made a promise to Charles Rodney to take care of his daughter and Wyoming ranch. When he arrives it is to disbeleif that he knew Rodney but Rafe sets right in to caring for the ranch and trying to convince Ann, Rodney's daughter. Bad guys of course try to stop him and Rafe triumphs in t ...more
Bracken A.
I think this is a great book. It is set in Wyoming. When Rafe Caradec makes a promise to his dying friend, to look after his ranch and family in Wyoming. But when he gets to the ranch there is more there that meets the eye. The ranch is deserted and the family is gone. But when he gets to town he finds that his friends wife had died and his daughter is engaged to the mortgage holder on the ranch. but when Rafe try's to get some answers he is told to leave and is and is shot at. Rafe is making hi ...more
Kedron Skiles
After watching the movie "Crossfire Trail", I wanted to read the book. Now I've read the book and I want to watch the movie again.
5 stars
Gordon Gravley
You're always guaranteed a good read with L'Amour. He set the standard for the Western genre.
Michael Geiger
nice relaxing fun read, just the break I needed.
Louis L'Amour! Yes! I found one I hadn't read!
A great entertainment from the legend. Great stuff!
Ramakrishnan M
anoher awesome western by louis l'amour
So so Western by L'Amour. I did not think it was one of his better ones.
This is the second time I have read this book, by accident this time as I forgot I had read it before. Gave it 4 stars two years ago and 5 this time. I is not a GREAT novel but a very good one, not a wasted page. This is the kind of book a non reader should read. It would hook them on to reading more. This authors books should be on the reading list for teens in middle school. Anyone who reads this as their first LAmour book , I promise you would want to read more of his works
Aug 11, 2008 Ichlem rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: THose who enjoy western fiction
Recommended to Ichlem by: Father
Classic Lamour novel. His ability to transport you back into the early american frontier is nearly perfect. Also, the different characters have personalities and characteristics all their own. The scene in the courtroom is particularly enjoyable. To see the villians squirm at their own stupidity is most enjoyable. The main character turns out to be a much more formidable opponent than they had originally thought. A must read for anyone who appreciates western fiction.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Larry Hostetler
Set off the coast of northern California and in Wyoming, this is the usual good read from Louis L'Amour. Instructive in frontier life, indians of the area, and small-town politics, it even has courtroom drama along with the normal "romance", fisticuffs and shootings.

Always interesting and a quick read, this is typical (and good) L'Amour storytelling.
On only his third or fourth novel, L'Amour starts to expand beyond the framework of good guys/bad guys/damsel in distress. The characters here are more compelling, less clear in their intentions, while the heroes and villains are not always willing to fit into their predestined roles. A good example of a writer starting to find his way.
Oct 25, 2007 Allison rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: cowboys and fellow cowboy enthusiasts
Ok, Louis L'Amour is not exactly cerebral stuff. But I think his ~150 page Western novellas are going to be my new standbys to pick up between longer, more intense reading. Full of fist and gunfighting, it's entertaining as hell... if you can glaze over the plot holes and infallibility of the main character.
Agian, a good book looking at more than just a romance or someone shooting someone over a beer.
I liked the fact of the ranching and conservation efforts of Rafe Caadec for Wyoming ranch.
Also the law and how it was used against and for the rancher, small farm.
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Louis L'Amour was an American author. L'Amour's books, primarily Western fiction, remain enormously popular, and most have gone through multiple printings. At the time of his death all 101 of his works were in print (86 novels, 14 short-story collections and one full-length work of nonfiction) and he was considered "one of the world's most popular writers".
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“Too often she had listened to her father discourse on the necessity for peace and consideration of others. She believed in that policy wholeheartedly. The fact that occasionally violence was necessary did not alter her convictions one whit. No system of philosophy or ethics, no growth of goverenment, no improvement in living came without trial and struggle. Struggle, she had often heard her father say, was the law of growth. Without giving too much thought to it, she understood that such men as Rafe Caradec, Trigger Boyne, Tex Brisco and others of their ilk were needed. For all their violence, their occasional heedlessness and their desire to go their own way, they were building a new world in a rough and violent land where everything tended to extremes. Mountains were high, the praires wide, the streams roaring, the buffalo by the thousand, and tens of thousand. It was a land where nothing was small, nothing was simple. Everything, the lives of men and the stories they told, ran to extremes.” 0 likes
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