The Authentic Death of Hendry Jones spins off the story of the legendary outlaw Billy the Kid. This action packed adventure follows Hendry (Billy) through southern California and northern Mexico leading to his capture and eventual murder by Dad Longworth (Pat Garrett).
Paperback, 211 pages
November 1st 1992
by University of Nevada Press
(first published 1956)
Probably long out of print, this loose re-telling of the Billy the Kid saga is one of the finest Western novels ever written, from an author better known as the editor of many collections of Twain's work. This was the source for (but is wildly different from) Marlon Brando's "One-Eyed Jacks", but you can also see where it must have inspired Peckinpah's "Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid".
"The name of Charles Neider is familiar to everyone in the field of Mark Twain studies. Born in 1915, he did most of his work on Mark Twain between the late 1950s and the mid-1980s.
A man of many parts, Neider would make an interesting study in his own right. He was born in Odessa, Russia, on January 18, 1915 and came to the United States in 1920. After graduating from City College of New York in"The name of Charles Neider is familiar to everyone in the field of Mark Twain studies. Born in 1915, he did most of his work on Mark Twain between the late 1950s and the mid-1980s.
A man of many parts, Neider would make an interesting study in his own right. He was born in Odessa, Russia, on January 18, 1915 and came to the United States in 1920. After graduating from City College of New York in 1938, he became a free-lance writer and editor. His writings would eventually range from a book on insects to several books on Antarctica, which he visited three times between 1969 and 1977. That remote continent was one of his chief passions, and he is probably better known for his books about it than he is for his Mark Twain books. He also wrote novels and published collections of such classic writers as Washington Irving and Leo Tolstoy. He spent his last years fighting against the cancer that eventually killed him; and before he died, he completed Adam's Burden: An Explorer's Personal Odyssey Through Prostate Cancer, which is scheduled for publication in October.
While researching the Western novel he published as The Authentic Death of Hendry Jones (later made into the Marlon Brando film One-eyed Jacks). In 1957 he published his first Mark Twain collection, The Complete Short Stories of Mark Twain.
Neider followed with other collections that covered the gamut of Mark Twain writings: The Complete Humorous Sketches and Tales of Mark Twain (1961), Mark Twain: Life As I Find It: Essays, Sketches, Tales and Other Material (1961), Complete Essays of Mark Twain (1963), The Travels of Mark Twain (1961), The Complete Novels of Mark Twain (1964), The Complete Travel Books of Mark Twain (2 volumes, 1966), The Comic Mark Twain Reader (1977), The Selected Letters of Mark Twain (1982), Plymouth Rock and the Pilgrims and Other Salutary Platform Opinions (1984), Mark Twain at His Best: A Comprehensive Sampler (1986) and The Outrageous Mark Twain (1987). Through those years, his books helped remind the world that Mark Twain wrote much more than Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn.
Neider's most important book, however, was arguably The Autobiography of Mark Twain (1959). In 1965, he published The Adventures of Colonel Sellers, in which he condensed all of Charles Dudley Warner's chapters to brief interchapter passages, in the same way (as Neider pointed out) that Mark Twain himself had constructed "Those Extraordinary Twins" out of the original draft of Pudd'nhead Wilson.
The best summary of Neider's Mark Twain work can be found in his elegantly written 1967 book titled, simply, Mark Twain, which collected the introductions to his earlier books, along with other essays, including the well-known "Mark Twain and the Russians: An Exchange of Views" (1960)." by Kent Rassmussen, abridged Source - http://faculty.citadel.edu/leonard/js...