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Best Stories of the American West, Volume I
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Best Stories of the American West, Volume I

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  14 ratings  ·  5 reviews
Here isa collection of the best contemporary short stories of the American Westby a diverse group of writers, young and old, male and female, well-known and not-so-known. And for the first time there appears, side-by-side, the work of so-called “traditional” Western writers, such as Max Evans, Elmer Kelton, and Elmore Leonard, and the “literary” contingent, represented by ...more
Paperback, 320 pages
Published April 15th 2008 by Forge Books (first published April 17th 2007)
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Keith Wilson
There are some very strong short stories from multiple viewpoints that is that multicultural caldron, the American West. My favorite was Confession for Raymond Good Bird by Melanie Rae Thon. I couldn't get through the Elmer Leonard, yea, I know, he's a great story-teller, but I never have been able to get into his work.
Great book, but I felt a little deceived by the title. I expected classic Westerns, after all Elmer Kelton and Elmore Leonard are listed on the cover. There's a cowboy on a horse for crying out loud. What I got was stories that were all over the place. Probably 85% were set in this century, many in the last couple of decades. To make matters worse, some of them were set in urban locations. So, if you're looking for what I consider Western's, you'll be disappointed. The saving grace is that the s ...more
I read excerpts from this compilation for a class on literature and the American West in fall 2008, eventually writing a paper on John Sayles's short story "Dillinger in Hollywood." The stories in this book are freaking amazing. I came to tears several times. If you want to know what the western has become, look no further.
Like any book of short stories (especially those by multiple authors), there are definite highs and lows here. The best stories were by Sherman Alexie, Elmer Kelton, John Rember, Johnny D. Boggs, and Pete Fromm. Not quite what I was expecting (most stories are set in the present), but I enjoyed it nonetheless.
David Ward
Best Stories of the American West Volume I by Marc Jaffe (Tom Doherty Associates 2007)(Fiction - Western) is a book of twenty selected Western stories of which about five are really well written. "Snow Cave" by Pete Fromm is especially moving. My rating: 6/10, finished 10/6/12.
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