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The Lily of the West

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  42 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Winner of the Western Fictioneers Peacemaker Award for Best First Western Novel, The Lily of the West is the story of Mary Katherine Haroney, known as the notorious "Big Nose Kate." In the American West of the 1800s, women had few choices, but Kate made her own way. A Hungarian immigrant, Kate forged her way across the American frontier, an orphaned stowaway on a Mississip ...more
Hardcover, 341 pages
Published January 16th 2019 by Five Star Publishing (first published January 2019)
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Average rating 3.69  · 
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Apr 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Read like fanfic for the movie "Tombstone". ...more
Mar 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. Have seen many movies about the Old West and Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp and his family, but never one for the female perspective. Mary Katherine Haroney, AKA Lily of the West is one of the women behind the man in this story - and a story you won't soon forget!! ...more
Phil Mills, Jr.
Jul 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Historical fiction gets a fresh new twist with this well-written novel about Mary Katherine Haroney (aka“The Lily of the West”). Author Kathleen Morris does a great job of filling in the gaps between well-known fact and probable fiction. Her emotional descriptions and discourse turn even the most jaded of readers into sympathetic followers of “Big Nose Kate”. Better yet, she lets the strong and independent “Kate” tell her own story.
There have been many stories about the “bigger than life” chara
Janell Madison
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderfully written book that could appeal to both women and men. I’m don’t typically read Westerns, but this book had so many great elements, that it kept my interest throughout the book. It is a great story of perseverance, through extreme difficulty. This book shares another perspective on a piece of history that we’ve all heard about, Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp at the OK Corral, but this time we get to hear it from Mary Katherine Haroney, Kate. A woman who struggled, but was deter ...more
Andrew McBride
Sep 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Kathleen Morris certainly ‘hit the ground running’ as a western novelist as her debut ‘Lily of the West’ won the Peacemaker Award for best first novel. ‘Lily’ is a refreshing new take on a familiar tale. ‘Big Nose’ Kate Elder normally only features as a supporting player in the story of Wyatt Earp and John Henry – ‘Doc’ – Holliday. Here she takes centre stage and we follow her life from long before she met either of these western legends to long after. Born in Hungary, Kate travels from Europe t ...more
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
The Lily of the West tells the story of Mary Katherine Haroney who goes from being a Hungarian immigrant orphan to a singing star at dance halls in New Orleans and Dodge City and eventually becoming lover to 'Doc' Holliday. She becomes known as 'Big Nose Kate' and is as skilled at gambling as in her singing. She becomes involved with the Earps of Dodge City and is romantically involved with Wyatt Earp before Doc Holliday enters her life. The novel portrays her as a remarkable strong woman whose ...more
Michael Jack
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book. Huge fan of western historical fiction. I was skeptical about the book at first. Mainly due to the cover. It looked more like a romantic western, however I was quickly won over in the first few chapters because of the writing skills of the author. Kathleen Morris does a very fine job blending the historical truth of what we know about the wrongly nicknamed Big Nose Kate and her associated prominent western icons with the unknown parts that we don’t with passionate intensity. I t ...more
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
A fresh, thrilling, and insightful exploration of the often maligned or dismissed Mary Katherine Haroney as told by Kate herself. The novel covers her youth and early relationships, particularly her intense and sometimes violent relationship with Doc Holliday, and the many well-known events up until his death. Morris skillfully gives Kate her own voice, dignity, and agency in this sympathetic portrayal without glossing over her flaws or the role she played in her often tumultuous life. The novel ...more
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
A nice fictionalized biography of Mary Katherine Haroney. Born in Pest, Hungary, orphaned in the US, she was a semi-famous figure in the American West for her singing, gambling and relationship with Doc Holliday. The books tells her story through the death of Holliday. The afterward says it was hard enough finding out about her before that but very little after. A good read.
Thora Hrafnsdottir
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Though the book is listed under fiction, the author researched Miss Kate's life and has done her best to do justice to Miss Kate's life and personality. The book is a quite enjoyable read, and I do recommend it. ...more
Nov 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
Amazing concept, poor execution.
May 24, 2019 rated it liked it
The history of the Earps and Doc Holliday were interesting, but almost 1/3 of the book was about Kate and Doc Holliday in bed. This was unnecessary and slowed the book down.
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Feb 21, 2020
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