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Sunset Pass (1990)

Sunset Pass (1990)

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0061000841 (ISBN13: 9780061000843)

About book Sunset Pass (1990)

A cowpuncher with the incomparably cliched name of Trueman Rock returns to the town of Wagontongue after six years away. He has a history of gunfights there, but has since gone straight. The town has "grown some" since he was last there, but some of Trueman's old friends have suffered economically whilst a recently arrived ranching clan, the Prestons, have somehow been able to undercut the market and thrive out at Sunset Pass. It doesn't take Trueman long to bump into the Prestons, most notably their pretty yet sad eldest daughter Thiry, with whom he falls instantly in love, and their mean, wild eldest son Ash, who seems to have an uncommonly intense regard for his sister, scaring off each of her many suitors' in turn. As Trueman starts to work for the family and get closer to Thiry, he discovers the secret of their success and a showdown with Ash becomes increasingly inevitable...Sunset Pass offers a classic cowboy set up of rustlin' and romance out on the range, told in the authentic vernacular ("Reckon I am", "powerful fond", "hoss" for horse etc) by one of the first gentlemen of the genre, but it's let down by a shallowness of story and a lameness in the love interest, e.g. 'She was the girl. All his life he had been dreaming of her. To realize she actually lived!'The bad guy is a little more like it, a drunken bully with a bad attitude, or as one of the support characters muses, "did you ever see a slick, cold, shiny rattlesnake, just after sheddin' his skin, come slippin' out, no more afraid of you than hell, sure of himself, an' ready to sting you deep? Well, that's Ash Preston". That said, Sunset Pass is more 'Bonanza' than 'The Big Country'.p.s. I read the book online at Gutenberg Press website which mentions that their version was a magazine abridgment, so maybe all the best writing was sacrificed to streamline the story? I will read another of Grey's books in the future just to see if this was the case.

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