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The Luck of Roaring Camp and Other Short Stories

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  275 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Rich in ironic humor and crisply observant, Bret Harte's tales offer an engaging mix of sentiment and wit. The great American storyteller's fiction hasinfluenced countlesswriters,from Owen Wister to Zane Grey. This compilation features six of his bestyarns, including"The Outcasts of Poker Flat," "Tennessee's Partner,"and four others. ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Expected publication: October 21st 2015 by Dover Publications (first published 1882)
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Community Reviews

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Bob Schnell
Mark Twain and Charles Dickens thought Bret Harte was the king of western American literature, yet their works are much better known today than his. Harte's stories and characters could justifiably be seen as the inspiration for O. Henry and Damon Runyon but, again, they are household names and his is not. After reading this collection of short stories, poetry, "condensed novels" and essay I believe I understand why. The writing just doesn't stand the test of time. Some stories go nowhere or end ...more
"The Luck of Roaring Camp" is a touching short story about an infant that enters the lives of several men. Through the story, it is obvious that The Luck's entrance into their lives changed the men in many ways.
Justin Tyler
The edition I have of this book only contains three stories: The Luck of Roaring Camp, The Outcasts of Poker Flat, and Tennessee's Partner. I think that these stories are very well written, and very easy to read. They're very short (around 5000 words each). It took me one hour total to read all three of them, and I read at an average pace.

Contrary to the statements of one reviewer, these stories are not sad; they are realistic. They are, in fact, touching in how real such things as love, innoce
December 11, 2010 I had forgotten that I had read this collection of 6 stories. My first review was a one star. My review today is 5 stars. The difference is me. I found the writing to be riveting. The stories are not fast paced but they do hold the reader's attention. The stories have a certain humor to them based upon the human condition and the settings of the story. I started with M'lissa this time instead of the first story. That I think gave me a new avenue into Brete Harte. I found myself ...more
The last batch of short stories I read must have been in high school - required reading, of course. I'd never much paid attention to the genre because, like poetry, I wanted something longer, substantial, filling. Not to say short stories and poetry don't have merit - Edgar Allen Poe can keep me spellbound, and "The Lady of Shallot" still reminds me of Anne Shirley. I have a poet friend whose work delights me, and who can forget Shakespeare's sonnets?
Point being, I usually read novels. "The Luck
I’ve been curious about reading Bret Harte pretty well just because I love Mark Twain so much (even though they evidently didn’t think much of one another) and they’re often compared to one another. Finally, I was inspired to tackle this little collection of some of Harte’s most famous stories. Reading Harte, however, was sort of an odd experience for me, filled with quite a mixture of responses.

I, first of all, just enjoyed Harte’s writing. In fact, that’s the chief comparison I think you could
I heard about Bret Harte years ago when reading a run-down of western fiction, so figured I would give this a shot. All the stories are short ones, ten pages being around the average, and the max. This stuff was written in the 1800's, so be prepared for the writing to be a bit different-this is not Louie L'Amour.
Overall, it is good stuff. The writing was solid, the author does a good job reflecting the language of the times, and these are just nice little snapshots of life back in the Old West.
My first objection is that the edition I read was in a set of children's books. I found the stories sad and discouraging. There are many natural disasters, but also a large pile of 'original sin', as Flannery O'Connor puts it. Story after story ends with tragedy or relational pain. The author's jaded view comes through strong and clear. And though I'll grant Bret Harte's talent at drawing portraits of people and western culture, that alone cannot surmount the difficulties of tone and subject.
Bryan Bedell
Commentary: (for the title story only) thus far...

This work is such a nice little treasure. The author does so well to capture such wonderful juxtapositions of sentiment. The story itself captures a subtle poignancy of human nature that is too often scarce or bland in the modern world. His tonal rhythm is exquisite. The delivery and realization of the spirit of this short story is on par with the greats. For a pleasant escape into the nuance of spiritual reverence and nature of man this silver b
Yasiru (reviews will soon be removed and linked to blog)
In his essay 'Rudyard Kipling', Orwell mentions Dickens in Camp by Bret Harte as an example of a 'good bad poem'. Without doubt the poem is a sentimental, heartfelt kind, perhaps a little too simple and honest and disallowing any new or subversive feeling- but it's also gentle and pleasing, especially prefaced with some indication of the influence Dickens had on Harte as given at

Hope to read the stories mentioned which impressed Dickens along with the res
I read this because I grew up close to Roaring Camp and wanted to hear some stories about the place, even if they were fictional. Not bad, but not too exciting. I can see how Bret Harte influenced and sometimes even created the exciting sterotypes of gold miners and other kinds of California settlers, but I think I had my hopes set too high for the actual story content.
Chie Akura
1. Penguin readers level 2

2. 12/8=40minutes , 12/9=50minutes

3. baby, men, roading camp, storm,
live, tree, a gang

4. These stories end as badend, so it is a little unusual stories.

5. This book has three short stories, so it was easy for me to read, because the stories were made briefly.
Takuro Suzuki
3:Camp,a baby,the luck,no women,guys,miss Mullins,Jack
4:a:We can't hold Tommy with dirty hands and dirty clothes.
b:Wild guys try to change for the baby. It is a smile provoking scene.
5:A prelide is so exiting. A baby change wild guys. What a humanity drama!
A college library had a twenty five volume collected works edition of Harte's work. I read most of that collection and found a number of stories I thought were great little gems, but were unknown to anyone save a Harte scholar - a being I never found.
Jerry Nicholas
Difficult to read

Because of the nineteenth century language and style this is another on that is difficult to read and sometimes impossible to understand. Some of the stories are fun, some are sad and some just silly.
Read book before motorcycle trip through gold country and Calaveras County. This book was good preparation. Harte, in his day, was far more famous and popular than Twain. These stories of part of the reason.
I discovered Bret Harte's stories as a mid-teenager in mid-late 1960s and they have stuck with me ever since. They were among my favorites in that era. I was an insatiable reader throughout summer vacations.
Fascinating historical fiction. It really puts you there (and I'm partial to it because it's not only the history of my state, but the general areas that I've known my entire life).
Writing this 6years after reading the book but i do remember liking it.Also remember the luck was a child. So it must have been pretty good to remember that about novel.
Light, wonderfully colorful stories of old California, classic American lit. I'd only ever read a few of these stories..they are all good.
A surprisingly good collection of Western stories with many enjoyable twist endings. Read it for the character descriptions alone.
A nice collection of Western Ameircan stories. Harte was a master story teller.
Sep 21, 2010 Erin added it
Wish there were negative stars.
Kind of a Mark Twain for California.
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Mar 27, 2015
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aka Francis Bret Harte

He was born in Albany, New York, as Francis Brett Hart. He was named after his great-grandfather Francis Brett, and his family name was Hart. When he was young his father changed the spelling of the family name from Hart to Harte. Later, Francis preferred to be known by his middle name, but he spelled it with only one "t", becoming Bret Harte.

He moved to California in 1853, l
More about Bret Harte...
The Outcasts of Poker Flat The Luck of Roaring Camp Bret Harte's Gold Rush Tennessee's Partner Selected Stories of Bret Harte

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