Zeke and Ned
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Zeke and Ned

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  899 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Set in the Cherokee Nation not long after the Civil War, Zeke and Ned is the story of Ezekiel Proctor and Ned Christie, the last Cherokee warriors -- living men whose story is not legend, but history, and whose fates were a consequence of the brutal policies which produced the Trail of Tears. A powerfully affecting novel dramatizing the long Cherokee struggle against white...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 646 pages
Published December 31st 1997 by Thorndike Press (first published 1997)
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Larry McMurtry is my new discovery. For years I've looked at his many books on the shelves of bookstores with their pictures of cowboys on the covers and passed them over thinking that someone who wrote so many books and so many popular ones could not have written them well. I know. I'm ashamed to have thought this way. But with age sometimes comes wisdom and better yet humility. This is my second McMurtry book and the thought of all those other of his books of his yet to read fills me with hope...more
In real life, Ezekiel Proctor (1831-1907) was a mixed blood Cherokee who survived The Trail of Tears at age 7, fought for the Union in the Civil War, was a district sheriff and a federal marshal, served the Cherokee Nation as a respected senator, and made a living being a farmer and a cattleman. He had two children before he married, and 5 more by his first wife who died a few months after she delivered triplets. He married twice more before he died.

Ned Christie (1852-1892) was the son of Trail...more
Susie James
Going into "Zeke and Ned" I didn't realize both Zeke Proctor and Ned (Edward) Christie were real people. As I got into the story, however, I did some research and lo and behold: what kind of mixed bag storytelling were McMurtry and Ossana doing here? This is a fine novel, but it's troubling that the writers have taken real people from the Cherokee Nation and then have proceeded with the fictionalization. Why not just either try and flesh out these men and their neighbors, or create fictional nam...more
WHAT an INCREDIBLY entertaining read! The many eccentric characters and unanticipated antics remind me of a classic Greek morality tragedy by Sophocles or Homer.
That "Hanging" Judge Isaac Parker (of Fort Smith, Arkansas) is presented as a really likable and harried civil servant!
I THOROUGHLY enjoyed the hard copy book and KNOW that the audible version by my favorite Barrett Whitener would be outstanding!
Aside from Lonesome Dove, Zeke and Ned was the most amazing book I've read by Larry McMurtry. I both laughed out loud (and still do) and cried for the character's loss. The tragedy of the Cherokee nation is not fully understood by Americans today. Larry brings us an unforgettable group of characters to give us and up close look at this moment of American history.
Lonesome Dove is one of my all-time favorite books so I had to try this one. I really enjoyed Zeke and Ned, although the ending seemed a bit abrupt. Perhaps I was just sorry to see the book end. McMurtry combines description and dialogue so beautifully. His characters live on in my memory as if I had really known them.
Mar 17, 2011 Debra marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Stephen King recommended author and book.

Author noted in Chapter 9 of Berkley's 1983 paperback edition of Danse Macabre.
David Burke
Awesome. McMurtry does it again. From the first line I was hooked. This time a western from the point of view of reservation Indians.
I really enjoyed this novel of the interplay between the Cherokee world and that of the white man after the Civil War. Zeke goes on trial for the accidental shooting of a woman, but it is during that trial that chaos erupts when the relatives of the dead woman's husband attempt to take the law into their own hands. Ned, Zeke's friend and Keetowah brother, becomes embroiled in the whole mess when he kills some of the troublemakers at the trial. It is he, however, that the white man ends up wantin...more
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This book was set in the Cherokee Nation, not long after the Civil War and is the story of two Cherokee warriors, Ezekial Proctor and Ned Christie. The book deals with the Cherokee's struggle against white authority. It is humorous, almost to the point of ridiculous, slap stick, with some not so humorous parts sandwiched in. There were a few pasages I particularly liked...

"The young white marshal's impatience was an irritant, like a clock that ticked too loud. It was hard to feel calm, either wi...more
I wanted to like this story. I really did. But the writing doesn't sit well with me and I don't know if it's the way the author is telling the story or if it is the narrator of the audiobook. Either way I've decided to eject it. I can't get into it and I have too many books waiting to be listened to/read to keep trudging through this one. Apparently a lot of people enjoyed the book so perhaps reading a paper version would change the pace and tone of the book (which right now is painfully slow an...more
A tale of two Cherokee warriors after being settled in the Indian Territory. Zeke is a married man who has an affair with a white woman and ends up shooting her while taking aim at her husband. He is tried in court which turns into a crazy gunfight and Zeke escapes into the woods. Ned is a young Cherokee warrior who marries Zeke's young daughter and tries to help his friend hide from the law. This book takes you into the life and times of the Cherokee Indians in the old West.
Peg Lotvin
Two real characters in a fictional setting by Larry McMurtry. Lots of random murder by random murderers. Lots of description of how hard it must have been for the wives and relatives of these men. Send them out for a loaf of bread and the judge comes to tell you of their death in a shootout or that they have been locked up as the ones doing the shooting. McMurtry must channel the old west. His characters read like living persons that he knows. Remarkable!
Synopsis: A fictionalized account of the last years of Cherokee Ned Christie's life

Comments: I didn't know anything about Ned Christie before I read this. I'll admit it; I have a crush on him now that I've read this book. He had faults, but he was a good man, wrongfully accused and persecuted by the white lawmen. This novel illustrates how a seemingly minor event can snowball and destroy numerous lives. I certainly wouldn't call it a feel good story, but I really enjoyed reading it. The characte...more
Zeke and Ned is an historical novel that takes place in the Indian territory just west of Arkansas now known as Oklahoma. These two men are known as the last great Cherokee warriors and the book is filled with violence and death--and love and happiness and family. It's hard to recommend a story like this, although Larry McMurtry is known as the best of tellers of western stories, but if you don't have a weakness at the recounting of bloody encounters, read it. Most of it takes place after the Ci...more
Larry McMurtry can write a Western like nobody else, even Zane Grey or Louis L'Amour. This is a story about two Cherokee Indians who get into trouble. There are moments of suspense, humor, pathos, everything you could want from a good yarn. I found the characters to be quite well-rounded, and I even enjoyed the bad guys. I think the inclusion of some major female characters into the plot really made it complete. I could definitely feel the the influence of McMurtry's co-author, because this boo...more
Bob Corrigan
Ahhh, now here's another book that I just could NOT get into. I think I was totally spoiled by Lonesome Dove. None of the other McMurtry books I've read since have really 'done' it for me. I think I want them to be like Lonesome Dove ... and they're just not. In fact, a few were downright awful.

This wasn't awful - I just couldn't get much interested in the characters. Back hills hicks just don't float my boat, I guess.

I made it about 1/4 of the way through, and decided to terminate it. I have s...more
An often humorous book set in the hills of the Cherokee Nation about two unusual old buddies and the many adventures they experience in the latter part of the 1800’s. While mostly having to do with the struggle between the Cherokees and the whites, the story is also filled with everyday life and relationships. Much like Lonesome Dove this is a tale reminding us of the virtues of loyalty, friendship and good old-fashioned honor with a healthy touch of humor. I tend to run hot and cold when it com...more
I actually would give this book a 2.5 rating.
It is the first book I have read by the authors.
Though I enjoyed the movie versions of Lonesome Dove as easy viewing,
I am not that fond of the authors writing style and will not likely read another one by them; or him.

The dialog between characters is slow and sounds as if all the Native Americans are somewhat mindless about getting on with the day.
Never the less it held my attention for the first 340 pages. Then I started skimming over the pages,...more
Tom Haynes
I read this before I got around to Lonesome Dove. Many people are looking for a repeat it seems. For me, each of Larry McMurtry's books are unique. Some, such as Terms, are very different but I enjoy the mans writing regardless of subject matter. Granted, Lonesome Dove is a great book and a tough act to follow. Blue Duck is one evil villain.
The trail of tears is a great tragedy. Ned & Zeke is a worthy tale.
I will revisit this book sitting on my favorites side of my bookcase.
Written in the Cherokee Nation after the removal from Georgia, this book was sad, funny, thought provoking and tragic. It winds the lives of several families together with interactions with the hanging judge, Isaac Parker. It is about warrior Indians, drunk Indians, brutal white men, Indian women, White women, and how they interact in often tragic manners. Larry McMurtry always writes engaging novels and this one written with Diana Ossana is no different
Jennifer Patrick
Boring! You know it's a bad book when you can skim through big chunks and not miss any key plot points. I don't think the Native American's were portrayed very nicely either. Would it had killed him to throw in one character that wasn't a drunk? The ending was predictable and I don't know why I wasted my time reading this. I think it was because I was in bed and too lazy to get up and get something else. Blaaaah.
I have mixed feelings about this book. It is a genre I don't really care for, but it was well done. Basically an event spirals out of control and ends up destroying lives. But not the life of one of the key people responsible. Which I suppose is a reflection on life, but I can't help but be irritated by it. In fact, the person who it really destroys was merely trying to be a good friend.
Flew threw the beginning and the end while the middle mostly left me wanting. I'm partial to books set in this time frame ( I have no idea why ) so for the most part pretty interesting. Nice little info on the Trail of Tears as well. Not much because it's not really the focus of the book but the characters seemed really real to me...in fact I might look them up, just to see.
When I started the cook I thought that it wasn't the type of western story I like to read, but after a little while I was drawn into the storyline and found that I wanted to read it more and more.
Brilliantly written, I love Larry McMurtry as an author and it is another of his books I will be keeping so I can read it again and again.
A great, gripping story that takes you to Indian Territory and the Cherokee life after the Trail of Tears. Zeke Proctor and Ned Christie and their families are momentous characters that live in these pages. A harsh, violent life was lived by all the inhabitants of the area after the Civil War. This reads like life. Not to be forgotten.
Mary Kauffman
I read this book 3 different times and enjoyed it immensely each time. The language and characters are rough but appropriately so for that era (right after the civil war). Probably, my enjoyment stems from the fact that I spent most of my adult life in that area and know all the places mentioned and the families as well.
I don't have a very good head for history and facts, but McMurtry and Ossana did not lose me. Characters were richly developed (too richly, at times - the plot was often paused to facilitate lengthy narratives of minor characters) and I found myself emotionally invested in their fates. Overall a bittersweet & satisfying read.
I'd had this book in my TBR pile for so long I decided it was time to read it, plus I was in the mood for something western. I didn't care for this book as much as his Lonesome Dove series. It could have been shortened if all the unnecessary rambling which had nothing overall to add to the story had been cut.
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Among many other accolades he was the co-winner of an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay for Brokeback Mountain in 2006.

Larry McMurty was born in Wichita Falls Texas in 1936. His first published book Horseman, Pass By was adapted into the film "Hud".

McMurty went on to publish many more novels, a number of which went on to become movies as well as a TV mini-series.
More about Larry McMurtry...
Lonesome Dove Terms of Endearment The Last Picture Show Streets of Laredo Comanche Moon

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