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The Rainbow Trail ( Riders of the Purple Sage#2)

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  922 Ratings  ·  77 Reviews
"Yes. He wanted to stay, and I had work there that'll keep him awhile. Shefford, we got news of Shadd--bad news. The half-breed's cutting up rough. His gang shot up some Piutes over here across the line. Then he got run out of Durango a few weeks ago for murder. A posse of cowboys trailed him. But he slipped them. He's a fox. You know he was trailing us here. He left the t ...more
Paperback, 230 pages
Published November 3rd 2006 by Hard Press (first published 1915)
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Henry Avila
Aug 12, 2011 Henry Avila rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Rainbow Trail, a worthy sequel to "Riders of the Purple Sage".John Shefford ,a former minister,(he was told to leave by the church , for being a suspected atheist !)meets Bern and Elizabeth Venters in Illinois.They tell him an unbelievable story of Lassiter, Jane Withersteen and Fay Larkin ,their "adopted" daughter .Stuck in Surprise Valley for 12 long years!Strangely Shefford falls in love with Fay ,without ever seeing her.He needs someone to love.Arriving in Arizona, John encounters an Ind ...more
Jun 25, 2015 Jay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
After reading a few classic Westerns, I’ve figured out why the heroes have been reflective, thoughtful, intelligent characters. It’s so that the author can put in a lot of description, mostly of the land. The terrain and vegetation descriptions set this apart from other non-genre novels - Grey describes like he is there, so that you could picture the cinematic version of the story. There wasn’t as much going on in this one compared to “Riders of the Purple Sage”, and multiple bad guys exit with ...more
Richard Ward
May 28, 2015 Richard Ward rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Zane Grey only.
Zane Grey is my favorite writer of westerns, and Riders Of The Purple Sage is one of my most favorite books of the genre. So I had high hopes for the sequel, and it let me down. Not even in the same league. Yet his fans will want to read it, and it does have some good material in it. Mormon polygamists are keeping "sealed wives" against their will. Our protagonist, a "gentile" from Back East, takes it upon himself to rescue one of them. He gets help from an Indian and from some Mormons who are b ...more
Jen Hirt
Aug 16, 2014 Jen Hirt rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
As you all know from my earlier post, I'm reading hundred-year-old westerns because this summer's vacation crossed paths with Zane Grey's homestead in Lackawaxen, PA. His house on the Delaware River is fantastic Americana (his writing space is perfectly preserved, down to the rugs and books and custom Hopi paintings done right on the wall). His grave nearby is quiet, mixed in with resting spots of Revolutionary War fatalities (the Minisink Battleground, just down the road). The museum is free, a ...more
Jun 14, 2016 Elinor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This sequel to Riders of the Purple Sage has an even more salacious story line than the first book. In Riders, a young Mormon woman has to escape the clutches of her controlling church elders. In this book, which takes place fifteen years later, the state of Utah has outlawed plural marriages, but an entire village of beautiful young "sealed" wives (not legal wives, but plural wives sealed by God) are hidden in the mountains, and visited in the dead of night by gray-bearded elders. Yuck! The her ...more
Gingerspice Obrien
Jun 18, 2016 Gingerspice Obrien rated it really liked it
Shelves: listened-to
The book is not as well paced or intense as Riders of the Purple Sage. Shefford is no Lassiter. He too often gets lost in his own dream world and needs others to snap him out of it. He is more a hero by accident and by the setup by others. I was sorry that Lassiter was portrayed as old and frail. I was hoping for at least one good gunfight where he could shine. I thought Fay Larkin was portrayed well, (wished she had really done the deed). Jane Withersteen was portrayed as just a shadow of her f ...more
Nov 17, 2015 Debbie rated it it was amazing
I love Zane Grey, but this one far outshines most of his books. The descriptions of the canyons and the river and the tension of the adventures were so exciting, I couldn't wait to finish the book, and yet I hated to say good bye to the characters. This is my second reading of the story, and it was better this time! I was so happy that Lassiter and Jane got out, and so glad the Mormon religion has changed their practices of "sealed wives". Horrible. I think Zane liked the Mormons, but hated some ...more
Aug 25, 2014 Janet rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once in awhile you come upon a book or books that speaks to you on a different level then all of the others and that is what "The Riders of the Purple Sage" and "The Rainbow Trail" have done to me. The descriptions of the vastness and beauty of the American West along with its history and romance told by a true artist is a combination that is hard to recover from. I will need a day or so to absorb all of this before I can let go and begin another book. Zane Grey was a true artist and a must read ...more
Mar 11, 2012 Betty rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. I was so fascinated by the author's descriptions that our next trip was planned around this exciting landmark in Northern Arizona. We took a boat trip on Lake Powell and hiked from the landing to the site of this natural bridge.

The story itself was fascinating, being the culmination years after the end of "Rider's of the Purple Sage." It had a mysterious quality to the story. I could read these two books time and again.
Jan 28, 2011 David rated it liked it
Shelves: ebook, kindle
Sequel to "Riders of the Purple Sage", Grey clearly has issues with Mormons and presents Indians as noble, wise people. Description of the landscape is first rate. The story is melodramatic.
Jan 10, 2017 Mary rated it liked it
I continue to be amazed at all the romance in Grey's westerns. This book is hard on Mormons and on all those who brought white ways to the Indians. Not half the book as it's predecessor, Riders of the Purple Sage.
Mar 28, 2014 Tim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this audiobook up at the Library for something to listen to on a long trip, not realizing that it was the sequel to Mr. Grey’s “Riders of the Purple Sage.” Apparently it had been published in a heavily censored format (because of the critical stance towards Mormons), as “The Rainbow Trail,” but this work was finally published 90 years later. I occasionally read one of Mr. Grey’s works, so I’m going to put off posting this review until I get and finish “Riders of the Purple Sage.” Should ...more
reta durbin
Sep 16, 2016 reta durbin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yesteryears reading, revived!

Picturesque, soul searching, romantic, mysterious, educational, enlightening, fascinating plot that kept me reading for several hours, and hating to lay it down even when I knew I must!
Oct 24, 2013 Ralph rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western
This is a sequel to the classic Riders of the Purple Sage, though the main characters from that book do not enter the plot till very near the end. Like the first book, this book is also a romance set in the west, but much of the time the characters and the plot are subordinate to the setting, and even when the characters and their actions take center stage, they have been changed through their experiences in the "crucible of the desert." Zane Grey wrote of the land through which he traveled and ...more
Jan 17, 2015 Tara rated it it was ok
Shelves: western-classics
I wasn't going to pick up any more Zane Grey after Riders of the Purple Sage, but I heard this was a sequel with the "rest of the story." I think I neither liked it well enough nor hated it enough to want to analyze it in a review, but maybe I can come up with a few comments. Overall, it was anti-climatic. I found the protagonist, Shefford, exasperating, not much of a mover/shaker, stopping to gaze at the horizon and consider it in detail while the enemy is trailing him. Once that threat had pas ...more
Patricia Ogden
The sequel to the famous "Riders of the Purple Sage", Shefford returns to the West to find the lost Faye and rescue Jane and Lassiter, whom he thinks are sealed in a canyon ("canon" as Grey calls them) after a landslide Lassiter created to save them from Mormon bad guys.

Lots of wonderful description of the beautiful country of southern Utah and northern Arizona. Shefford becomes a friend of a Navajo, who is instrumental in helping him complete his quest. Some historical framework is quite intere
Aug 11, 2016 Patrick rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: westerns
This story (originally called The Rainbow Trail) has more psychological depth and less action than its better-known prequel, Riders of the Purple Sage.

I had to consult the Web for background information on the erstwhile Mormon practice of "sealed wives," which is an institution on which the plot hinges. It is also true to say that Zane Gray's superficial depiction of Navajo culture would later be surpassed by novelist Tony Hillerman (Perhaps phrases like "Me no savvy Jesus Christ" had more reso
May 27, 2011 Jacob rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Started out ok, with some Abbey like descriptions of the desert. The story plot started out interesting as well. However, about a third of the way through this one got really stale. Descriptions of the land became repetitive, the plot unfolded in painfully predictable fashion, and the protagonist degenerated into hand wringing questioning of his potential relationship with the Sago Lily. This book was fine for the cross-country plane ride I read it on but not one I would go out and buy. If you l ...more
Aug 24, 2008 Barbara rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: western readers; those who enjoy the Southwest
Shelves: general-fiction
A worthy successor to Grey's Riders of the Purple Sage. You get to find out what happened to Jane, Lassiter and little Fay, but you also get a whole new story of John Shepherd, a young man looking for his own calling and new meaning to his life, pinning his quest on a strange story he's heard.

A lot of the book is really his internal journey, set against the phenomenal natural backdrop of the southwest as only Zane Grey can paint it. The dramatic "escape" journey--including a raft journey throug
I didn't realize until after I started reading this book that it was a continuation of sorts of Grey's book Riders of the Purple Sage. I didn't remember important bits from the first book to thoroughly enjoy this one enough. I found the book boring at times and the writing reminded me of a 1950's western. The words "pard", "squaw" seemed outdated and a bit pretentious and obviously politically incorrect on the word squaw which I know is an insult to Natives. I wished I could have enjoyed this bo ...more
Nov 07, 2012 David rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 12, 2014 Anna rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western
Finally finished.

I had a really hard time getting through this book and this is coming from someone who usually reads 19th century literature. At one point I even set it aside to read something else but, ultimately, I had to come back to it because I couldn't leave a book unfinished.

The reason that reading this book was like trudging through ankle deep mud, was because absolutely NOTHING happens until the last fifty pages! And even then, any action or forward movement of the plot was overshadowe
Feb 25, 2015 Carmen rated it it was ok
Shelves: western
A man searches for a girl whose story he has heard. In the course of the search, he finds a Mormon town which is inhabited by women. They are the second and so forth wives of men who live a short horse ride away. It chronicles when they wanted to join the US, but had to give up that part of their religious practices. The story line was a bit lame. He falls in love with someone whom he doesn't know and goes off to save her. He succeeds. I did enjoy the descriptions of the landscapes, otherwise no ...more
Jul 08, 2015 Theresa rated it it was amazing
What a lovely continuation to Riders of The Purple Sage.

A disgraced minister heads to the desert to find himself and a girl named Fay Larkin that in his mind will be his salvation. In that beautiful desert, he finds love, loyalty, friendship and himself.

The friendship between Shefford and Nas Ta Bega alone made the story a five star read. Again, I love a good bromance.

I was a little upset by how queasy Shefford was over Fay killing Waggoneer, but it all righted itself.

Jane's horse still knowing
Jun 15, 2015 georgia rated it really liked it
thin book but what i like about zane is his descriptions of what i what i see every day. he describes the sage in a way, i now have to stop and look. The painted desert as if on is just painting it. the story is book #2 of his beginning writing.s Yes there is a Mormon overflow of "taken wives", polygamy trial and, and. The story moves along most of the time. There were places where love and heartbreak love are described, i found tears on my cheeks.

Reading his books is becoming better than watch
Oct 01, 2010 Jerry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010

I've never read the prequel, Riders of the Purple Sage, but I will go back and read it. The Desert Crucible is a rewrite, or unedit of an earlier published sequel named "The Rainbow Trail". Editors back then felt it too controversial in the circumstances surrounding Fay's capture and forced wedding into polygamy with a masked Morman man. Grey is adept at capturing the beauty of the Southwest in his descriptions. It would be great if all his books could be reissued as he had originally written t
Feb 07, 2015 Paul marked it as did-not-finish  ·  review of another edition
I tried to finish this book. I really did. But I couldn't, even though it was pretty short. And, honestly, I couldn't finish it for one reason - it was incredibly boring.

I will admit that I didn't read the book the came before it, Riders of the Purple Sage, because I started reading it in an omnibus edition that didn't include that book. Maybe I'll read Riders of the Purple Sage one day and start this again. Or maybe I won't.
Doug Dams
Oct 01, 2011 Doug Dams rated it liked it
This Zane Grey story follows a man, John Stafford, who leaves home after a career failure to search for his purpose in life. Along the way he hears the story of a woman who needs help and so he starts to roam the west looking for her. His travels and the characters he meets and the dangers faced make this book a page turner. It also answers a question about the fate of two characters introduced in the book "Riders of The Purple Sage."
Mikkel Libby
Jul 22, 2014 Mikkel Libby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Typical Grey novel.

Typical Grey novel.

I do not ever
remember not liking the hero in Grey's books but I did not like Shefford. he seldom took the lead in any situation. He didn't even have the guts to kill Fayes tormentors. He did not do anything heroic other then accidentally kill Shad. My favorite character was the Indian. Without hi
, Shefford would've accomplished nothing.
Aug 06, 2009 Lynette rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was a Zane Grey virgin before reading this book. I read it because Everett Ruess read it, and I just read about Everett... I really enjoyed this book! It has been described as "pulp" - which it probably is - and he plays a little fast and loose with the geography (down Rainbow Canyon to the Colorado, and THEN through Cataract? not...) but it's a fascinating look into the times, and fed my wanderlust and passion for the Colorado Plateau...
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Pearl Zane Grey was an American author best known for his popular adventure novels and stories that presented an idealized image of the rugged Old West. As of June 2007, the Internet Movie Database credits Grey with 110 films, one TV episode, and a series, Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater based loosely on his novels and short stories.
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“Red Lake must be his Rubicon. Either he must enter the unknown to seek, to strive, to find, or turn back and fail and never know and be always haunted.” 0 likes
“did not at first give vague disappointment, a confounding of reality, a disenchantment of contrast with what the mind had conceived.” 0 likes
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