Last of the Breed
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Last of the Breed

4.17 of 5 stars 4.17  ·  rating details  ·  4,952 ratings  ·  464 reviews
Here is the kind of authentically detailed epic novel that has become Louis L'Amour's hallmark. It is the compelling story of U.S. Air Force Major Joe Mack, a man born out of time. When his experimental aircraft is forced down in Russia and he escapes a Soviet prison camp, he must call upon the ancient skills of his Indian forebears to survive the vast Siberian wilderness....more
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published June 1st 1987 by Turtleback Books (first published June 1st 1986)
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Jim
Louis, where have you been all my life? Forty four years on the planet, probably thirty of those in an awareness of this author and this the first of his books I've read. It was pure, unadulterated story telling, artful in its simplicity and gripping with its sure-footed plotting, characterisation and knowledge of the wilderness. No sex, no swearing, no ultra-violence, and no need for any of it to keep your attention. I loved it, despite the feeling that it was from a different, simpler era, whe...more
Marvin
My father's favorite authors were Zane Grey and Louis L'Amour. I'm not sure if anyone reads Zane Grey anymore but Louis L'Amour still remains popular. I read a couple of his westerns early in my life but was not impressed. They seemed rather formulaic to me. I was never that much on Western fiction to begin with, to be honest.

So recently one of the local book club members suggested Last of The Breed and I was excited to give it a try especially because it was not a Western, directly at least. I'...more
Vincent Bernhardt
Before you read further, you should know I'm a big L'amour fan, so I start out with a biased review. Having said that, if the book was total crap, I'd say so, but I'd probably say it nicer, like "this book would make great fertilizer" or something. Except I bought the Kindle version, so that doesn't really apply. And I wouldn't give it five stars. But I did, and it's worth it.

This is a great book. As usual LL creates a character that is over-the-top but that doesn't deter from the fantastic writ...more
Levi
This book had a big impact on me at a pivotal time in my life. While struggling to fit at a new school during my eighth grade year I was assigned to read this book for my English class. I couldn't put the book down until I was finished with it (I was reprimanded several times for reading it during classes). At the time I identified closely with the hero in the story. This book gave me the courage I needed at the time and I ended up going out for the wrestling team and I had an undefeated season...more
Zac
It was a cool story, and definitely different than I had anticipated. It sort of drug along, with bits of excitement thrown in the middle to keep you going. The best part was the very end. There weren't very many pages left, but there was still no resolution. More pages, more pages, and nothing. Finally, in one paragraph on the very last page, it closes the story off, and it was awesome. I'm a little bummed that we never heard from Natalya again, because she was cool, but knowing Joe Mack (the m...more
Mom (Tash)
If you think that Louis L'Amour only writes Westerns and you don't think that's your style, but if you like adventures filled with drama and intrigue, you should try "Best of the Breed". The story takes place during the Cold War, when a U.S. Air Force plane is shot down over Siberia and the pilot is taken to a secret Russian POW camp to be tortured for information. But the pilot is a Souix Indian who was raised by his grandfather in the mountains of Idaho and taught all the survival skills of hi...more
Sally
This was one of my grandpa's favorite books so when I came across it in a pile for a loonie, it was was a must read. It has a rugged peacefulness to it that made even me, the animal lover not cringe during the hunting scenes. The book was well-written and definitely took me the closest I will ever be to camping out in Siberia. It also provided a glimpse into the political climate of the Soviet Union during the 1980's. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a slow, methodical b...more
Mike (the Paladin)
I read this one way back when so to speak. I'd forgotten it till it came up in another conversation.

Joe Mack a Major and an American pilot is shot down and has to escape through Siberia finally across the Bering Strait. He has to depend on his skills as a Native American as well as his training. It's a good outdoors/adventure story.

This isn't a western as most of L'Amour's books are. It's well written and what is usually called a "page turner". May be a bit of what is called a "guy book", but g...more
Rob
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Deb
I have to admit, I was skeptical about reading a book by Louis L'Amour, but I trusted the friend who recommended it (Thanks, Joyce!) and I was more than pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

U.S. Air Force Major Joe Makatozi finds himself a prisoner in Siberia during the Cold War. His test plane being forced down had been artfully arranged by Colonel Zamatev, whose plan is to capture and interrogate specific people with knowledge of the weapons systems of the West. But Colonel Zamatev, d...more
Michael Beam
Jan 02, 2008 Michael Beam rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who idolizes native americans
The best thing that can be said for this book is that it is mercifully short. It is nothing more than a several hundred page explanation of why the American indians were so awesome, filled with prejudide and unfair accusations and assumptions about lighter skinned people. It starts out with a description of the life of a native american, comparing them, as a peacefull and utopian society, to the 'white men', a barbarric, godless, wasteful, and power hungry pack of animals. Okay.
It then switches...more
Stephen McMullin
I thought was an exciting book. I have never read a western type novel before and although this was not based in the wild west, it is based on an American Indian (Major Joseph Makatozi, USAF) who begins to rediscover his Indian heritage. Joe Mack is a strong willed individual who being captured by the Soviet Union for his knowledge of experimental air craft, as well as how to fly these. Joe Mack takes on the GRU Soviet army Col. Arkady Zamatev. Who is a very dangerous and Skilled Interrogator, A...more
Ruth
Grrrrrrr, I had a hard time rating this book. The story is GREAT! Love it (other than the abrupt ending). Louis L'Amour is a storyteller. In fact, he once said, "I think of myself in the oral tradition - as a troubadour, a village tale-teller, the man in the shadows of the campfire. That's the way I'd like to be remembered as a storyteller. A good storyteller." That being said, I thought this book was VERY poorly written, to the point of driving me crazy. He repeated himself often. He used the s...more
Maria
Major Joe Mack was captured by the Russians when his experimental aircraft was shot down. Escaping from a Siberian prison, he trekked across the wilderness evading capture to make it back to America.

Why I started it: Rereading it for another Book Club, I was reminded that if I ever was captured by the Russians... I have no skills to make it out, let alone to survive in the wild.

Why I finished it: I love the none man-romance. Where the hero finds a love interest, they never talk about their relat...more
Booklady
This book is set in Siberia and is an exciting tale of a young Air Force test pilot who is captured by the Russians and incarcerated in Siberia for questioning. It turns out that the pilot is also and American Indian who has spent many summers in the mountains learning the survival skills of his forefathers. His incredible stamina and mental determination compels the reader to turn page after page wondering if the pilot will be caught or hif he will die of starvation, injury or exposure. A depar...more
Jessica
In the Louis L'Amour tradition, the hero is strong, capable, and manly, not to mention he gets the girl. Unlike most of his westerns, this is set in Siberia, and he gives a wonderful feel to the landscape. The threat of freezing to death is very real once out in the snow.
The story is about an American pilot who is shot down and then taken prisoner in a camp in Siberia. He escapes, rather remarkably by poling over the wall the way people do at track meets. He is then trying to get back home while...more
Ryan Burt
1) Rating: 4 out of 5

2) Genre: Western

3) Synopsis: Major Joe Mack escapes imprisionment and has to survive the bitter cold of Russia and the entire Russian military.

4) Feelings: I read this book again because I remember loving it and want to write a survival story. I figure why not read it again and get some pointers from it. I still liked it but not as much as I originally did. There are parts that are overly descriptive. Then in a survival book, there usually isn't a whole lot of dialogue.

5) F...more
Kay
I reviewed this book for the 'Bookin' it' book club. I have a complete set of Louis L'Amour books, but this is one of my favorite. I never have to wonder who is the good person and who is the bad, because it's quite clear. Learned a lot about Soviet topography, especially the area of Siberia. Learned how people live there, etc. The book was well written, as are all of his. I read this to my husband who was bedridden in a hospital, and when I'd leave for the night and come back the next morning,...more
Illbefrank
Warning: spoilers ahead!

Exciting read. The story of a Red Indian escaping from a Siberian prison has much potential and the author seemed to have made the most of it. There is enough suspense, intrigue and entertainment to ensure one won't put the book down. The descriptions of the forest, landscape and weather conditions are vivid and seem well researched and makes for an engaging and absorbing experience, like you could be there witnessing the ordeal first hand.

However, Louis L'Amour's writin...more
Lily
My husband's grandfather gave him this book in 1987 and it has sat unread on the shelf since then! He would have loved it as a 11 year old boy and I think still will if he ever gets around to reading it. A Native American Army Pilot crashes on an arctic training flight and is captured by the Russians. This cold war era thriller is filled with description of life and survival on the frozen tundra. The political aspects of the plot were not as interesting, but overall an enjoyable read.
Hparsley
Apr 03, 2012 Hparsley rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hparsley by: Bellanotte
I want to give this a 5 because most of the book was amazing...but what on earth kind of an ending was that?!?! I don't want to spoil any more of it but I hate it when it doesn't have a complete end to the story, when you feel there should be more. I would have been happy to read 50 more pages of conclusion (or less if he brought it together more quickly). Overall, great story about adventure and living off the land as many people did in the grand days of old.
Fredrick Danysh
Major Joe Mack is a Native American Air Force test pilot. Flying over Alaska, his plane is forced down in Russia and captured. He is tortured for his technical knowledge but escapes into the wilds of the Russia Ural Mountains and is tracked by a native who prides himself on the number of men that he has tracked and killed. An epic struggle between native cultures ensues that asks "How strong is the venneer of civilization?" Pure Louis L'Amour adventure.
stormhawk
Jan 16, 2011 stormhawk rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to stormhawk by: tester-san
Shelves: kindle
Louis L'Amour is known for his Westerns. This might be a Western, if you stretch things a bit ... Siberia is to the West of the Western United States, after all, and the main character is a Native American.

The reader is kept turning pages by a taut storyline of escape and evasion, which is saved from being a clinical recitation of survival technique by contacts with others who aid Major Joseph Makatozi in his trek through the Siberian wilderness.
Susan
1 star = did not like it
The author wrote one chapter, scrambled the sentences, and then duplicated it over and over(Ctrl C, Crtl V).

This guy is fleeing for his life in Siberia. He is trying to walk the land bridge and get back to America. He wakes up, he's cold, he runs, he kills an animal, he makes a fire, he treats the hide, he can't sleep, he gets up, he's cold, he runs, yadda yadda for like million pages.
Ammon Beckstrom
Quite possibly my favorite Cold War novel--ever! Author, L'Amour, is mostly known for the dozens of Western (i.e.: cowboy) novels he wrote. However, for his work in this book alone I'd place last of the Breed in with the best from Ludlum, Clancy as one of the best writers in the genre. Which begs the question, why haven't they made a movie out of this yet?
Shirley
Am I sure Louie LaMour wrote this? It is too good. Spoke briefly of the Sawtooth and Bitteroot Mts. and the Salmon river in Idaho where we were camping. Then story went to Siberia--cold weather that I could relate to from living in the Upper Peninsular Of Michigan. Maybe I liked it because I could identify. First of 4 books I have read by this author.
Logan Crowe
Poetry, I? Read poetry? I haven't read a poem since Tiger, Tiger, burning bright. That was in school, many decades ago. Acknowledging that I am unworthy to critique a work that is based on a book from the Bible, (Five books actually). I fully expected to start this book and fall into my Sunday afternoon slumber, but heavens forbid, the more I read, the more I see it is written for the modern day reader, by a champion, a champion for the poor, for the oppressed...

The thinking reader, who wants a...more
Charles
I have a friend whose opinion I respect who thinks this is one of L'Amour's best books. I didn't like it that much myself, partially, I imagine, because it's not a western but a thriller about an American pilot of Indian ancestry who makes a daring escape through Russia after being shot down in an experimental aircraft.
Michael
I forgot about this book until I saw this on one of my friends bookshelves. I loved this book as a teenager and it might have been one of my first thriller/spy/survival genre books. Probably read it when I was about 14. Not sure how much I would like it now but I bet it's still pretty good.
Beth
I have to pay tribute to this book since it was the one that started me on this road to becoming a bookaholic. Now that I've read a lot more I realize that it is a bit slow but I was young and still got through it in a couple of days. Who knew I would end up moving to the author's home state?
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Last of the Breed 6 49 May 11, 2013 04:35AM  
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858
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".
-Wikipedia
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