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Appaloosa

(Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  6,730 ratings  ·  592 reviews
Cover and pages are in pristine condition. The dust jacket is also in excellent condition.
Hardcover, 276 pages
Published June 7th 2005 by Putnam Adult
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,730 ratings  ·  592 reviews


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Kemper
Jul 02, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western, 2015-reread
Robert B. Parker’s later books seemed to prove the saying that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks with him becoming very repetitive with his characters and stories. However, maybe this one shows that if an old dog starts gnawing on a new bone that he might chew it up a little differently. At least for a while.

This wasn’t RBP’s first attempt at a western, but it was the first book in a new series in which he introduced Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch, two lawmen for hire. Their latest gig is
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Robin Hobb
Mar 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone
Robert Parker wrote an amazing series of books about a detective named Spenser. I feel in love with his writing in those books.

When he sidestepped into a Western setting, I had my doubts, but they were quickly dispelled. My husband and I have shared and enjoyed these books several times, and the movie adaptation is fairly faithful to it. I still recommend the book over the movie. It's an unabashedly male view of the tale, completely suited to the character who tells the story.

"I'm your
...more
Fred Shaw
Feb 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Appaloosa by Robert B. Parker. Excellent western. Tough men good and bad with plenty of action. First in a series with Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch who come to Appaloosa to enforce the law. There’s a bad man, a bully, who until Cole and Hitch showed up ran over people in town and had murdered the previous marshal. There are showdowns and trials and Kiowa war parties, even a glimpse of a wild Appaloosa stallion with his herd of mares to keep you reading. Highly recommended.
Algernon (Darth Anyan)
Jun 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014

A nugget of solid gold, if the reader is in the mood for a Western novel. Appaloosa is small town out West. No need to describe it, it should be familiar from countless John Huston movies: one dusty main street in the middle of nowhere leading out into the open prairie, a saloon, a general store, a hotel, a barber and a lawman office. There are still some hostile Indian bands up in the hills, but the biggest problem of the city is one rogue rancher up on the range who sends his goons in to grab
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Jason Koivu
There's a new marshall in Appaloosa and his word is law.

Virgil Cole and his dependable sidekick Everett Hitch are lawmen hired to settle a podunk town out west. Bad guys abound. A woman shows up looking for love in all the wrong places. Trouble's a'brewin' boys!

This is a new-school western framed perfectly in the old school style. Robert B. Parker (better known for his Spenser detective series) seems to have been made to write this leather-hide rough action-adventure stuff.

Oh the brooding! So
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Mike (the Paladin)
May 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western, action
(The following should be heard by the reader in a slow, laconic, western drawl...)

Well, this here is a story of the old American west. It ain't told as no parody (That's a long "o") "ner" is it to make funa' the genre. No sir this here's a "regaler" rip-snorten western. It ain't ashamed o' what it is an' I like it.

The western is in many ways "the" American folklore. The "cowboy", the "gunman", the "lawman" and others are as iconic as the knight in armor or samurai. I grew up with the western
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TK421
Oct 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like me a good western every now and then; it reminds me of my grandfather. Parker's Cole and Hitch series fit my needs perfectly: smart, fast-paced, enough violence without becoming gratuitous, and realistic depictions of what the Old West was really like . Although, I do have one complaint: I could not get Rene Zellweger's face out of my head when reading about Allie, very distracting.

Jim
May 23, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western, fiction
I really enjoyed the movie and made the rare (for me) decision to read the book after seeing the movie...it usually happens the other way around. It came as no surprise that the two forms of media differed in their presentation of the same story, but neither really suffered for it.

I knew that this was the first of a series by Parker, and that caused me to read it with some trepidation as I have been disappointed in some series that I have sampled of late. I need not have worried...all the
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Cheryl
Aug 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
I usually don't read Westerns, but I did enjoy this one. It reads almost like a movie script, with mostly dialogue and action sequences. The writing is very spare, but alot is conveyed with a small amount of words. (There's alot going on under the surface.) I really liked the relationship between Cole and Hitch, the lawmen-for-hire. The plot, while having the classic Western tropes, still had a few twists in it to make it unpredictable. This is the first book in a series, which I will definitely ...more
Mark
Jun 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Robert B Parker and the western novel or both.
So what happens when you finally find the time to put up some new bookshelves?- You discover quite a few books in your collection you forgot about you had and have not read yet. This book is an example of that and it is a first edition and signed as well by Mr Parker so a little treasure worthy of my time.

This time it is a western with as a leading character one Virgil Cole who is a great gunfighter who lends his hand to returning the law to lawless cities. Somewhere along the line he picks up
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HornFan2 (Mike)
Back when I first started reading, I just read Westerns and Native American nonfiction from my Dad's library. Back in the '90's, the late Robert B. Parker was the first non-Western author that I tried, totally enjoyed his writing and he's one of my all-time favorite authors.

I liked the two main characters in this one, while Appaloosa gets a little repetitive, the legendary author Robert B. Parker with his writing style still has you flipping pages, you know it's good since another author's
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Jesse A
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid western. Very good first entry in this series.
Cyndi
Jun 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love a good western, and this one fits the bill.
We have tough men and lots of violence. Our story begins with the bad guys being truly bad and the good guys riding into town to clean it up.
On to the next book and the wild, wild west.
...more
Joan
It took me a while to get into the prose of this book - its 'dry' tone fits the story, but is a little 'distancing' at first.
However, I was drawn into the story and it was with a real sense of dismay that I reached the end.

Fabulous writing. Real characters, realistic situations, and not an unnecessary word anywhere in the book.

Wonderful.
Anna Kļaviņa
I would have been happier if we had more Katie and less Allie but then it would have been different novel. Not sure if the author intended it but I'm tagging Hitch as an unreliable narrator.
Mark Soone
May 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't excpect to ever give a 5 star review to a western...but here it is. I have never read Parker before and for some uneducated reason I had the preconcieved idea that he and Coben were a little bit likie Elmore Leonard (Who I dislike to the extreme...well his books really, I don't know him personally). Anyway after reading Coben and enjoying him I have had a number who told me I must read something of Parker's. So I set off to my local library looking for soomething in the Spenser or Stone ...more
Grey853
Oct 12, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: western
I liked this book better than the sequel RESOLUTION, but I have to admit that while I love Robert Parker as a writer, his westerns aren't for me. His two main characters are gun slingers, which pretty much means that they're both stone cold killers. The main character Cole comes across as a sociopath with few redeeming features other than his loyalty to his friend and his fast gun.

The only women in the book aren't any better. There are whores and a woman who is much worse than a whore,
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Lindsey
My first (and probably last) western. Kirkus, Library Journal, and Publishers Weekly all gave this a starred review, so I guess people who like Westerns thought it was really good, but I do not get it.

The only western story I really know is of Wyatt Earp, and this is basically the same story. Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch are sherriffs-for-hire, and they are brought into Appaloosa because a local bad guy has too much power and is making the town miserable. There are gun fights and loose women
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Hana
This reminded me of a classic Star Trek episode in which the Enterprise gang find themselves back in the wild, wild west just in time for a shootout at the OK coral only here it's Spenser and Hawk in the time warp.



Just kidding. The protagonists are named Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch, but it still felt like a Spenser mystery. Mildly diverting.
Jim
Dec 31, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Westerns, for the most part, are not my thing, excepting perhaps McCarthy and McMurtry, but every once in a while I'll pick one up. In this case I had read one of the new Parker novels that was actually written by someone else, and I wondered if the original Parker was as good as people seemed to believe he was. My conclusion is that he is pretty good. The story was fast paced, though not all that complicated, and I liked the main characters. I fear that future volumes in the series may not ...more
Barnabas Piper
Mar 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty much exactly what you look for in a western.
Gary
Apr 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this as much as any of the Spenser books. Got that Jesse Stone dialogue, Spenser and Hawk partners, a Susan character, no wasted words, a thought, swift plot, and lots of horses.
Paul
3.5*
If you've seen the movie (starring Ed Harris), you've read the book. A lightweight, but entertaining, quick read.
Cherie
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought I did not care for the first person narrative when I started reading the story, but it soon became background noise, and I did not think about it any more. I thought it was slow at first but as the characters became more familiar and their jobs and relationship in the story became more clear, and endearing, that too, became irrelevant. Even the old style names and their western sounding syllables acclimated to my senses. This was a western, after all. My only excuse for my feelings is ...more
Jason M Waltz
so never read a Parker work before, though always heard I should. twas interesting. staccato voice carried over from laconic characters to laconic narrator. liked it well enough, and I'd be interested in reading the follow-up title, but mighty unimpressed with main character Virgil Cole. for all his impressive skill at gunfighting and recognizing the lay of things and knowing what fellers will do and seeking to improve hisself through self-educating, he done tossed it all away - and blinded ...more
Michael
Feb 17, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carrie Rolph
A spare, beautifully written western about the Virgil, a marshal for hire, and his right hand man, Everett. When they take a job in Appaloosa, the plan is to take on Randall Bragg , the rancher who’s running the town and killing the lawmen. Things get more complicated with the arrival of the opportunistic Mrs. Allie French and the failed transport of Bragg to jail.

This has the same deadpan cowboy humor and camaraderie that I enjoyed with Larry McMurtry, but with a faster plot and less epicness.
...more
Benita
Feb 19, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: westerns
The book was fairly predictable but I still liked it. It's a little gritty with spots of humor here and there. It was a typical western featuring a cowboy that...here's the list:
Strong,silent type
Mysterious, don't know much about his background
Moves from town to town straightening out the miscreants
With ethics and principles
Easy on the eyes
Fast with a gun
Gets the girl

I'm perfectly fine with the predictable story line, it was a pleasure to read something that went really fast and in the end,
...more
Eric
Sep 29, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of westerns and/or Robert Parker
Recommended to Eric by: Found in a bookstore
Shelves: western
Parker's Appaloosa was a good, fast-paced western about a pair of gunslinging lawmen. I read the entire book on a three-hour flight from New York to Nashville, Tennessee.

While I was in Nashville, I saw the movie that was based on the book, starring Ed Harris as Virgil Cole and Viggo Mortensen as Everitt Hitch, and I would say that it does the novel justice.

Eric Mikols
Dec 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A sparse, quick read. Nails the western vibe. If all books in this genre were as good, I'd read more of them.
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Western Authors &...: Hello! .. fellow Western authors & readers! 4 25 Apr 21, 2014 12:13PM  

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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database named Robert B. Parker.
Robert Brown Parker was an American crime writer. His most famous works were the novels about the private detective Spenser. ABC television network developed the television series Spenser: For Hire based on the character in the late 1980s; a series of TV movies based on the character were also produced.
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Other books in the series

Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch (10 books)
  • Resolution (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #2)
  • Brimstone (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #3)
  • Blue-Eyed Devil (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #4)
  • Robert B. Parker's Ironhorse (Virgil Cole and Everett Hitch, #5)
  • Robert B. Parker's Bull River (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #6)
  • Robert B. Parker's The Bridge (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #7)
  • Robert B. Parker's Blackjack (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #8)
  • Robert B. Parker's Revelation (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #9)
  • Robert B. Parker's Buckskin (Virgil Cole & Everett Hitch, #10)
“I headed straight into the setting sun, and rode west at an easy pace. It was going to be a long ride, and there was no reason to hurry.” 6 likes
“None of us offered to shake hands. There was no advantage to letting somebody get hold of you.” 5 likes
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