Shane, the traveller and ex-gunfighter, a mysterious gunman who enters into the life of Joe Starrett and his family and carves a place for himself in their hearts. Although he tries to leave his gunslinging past behind, refusing to even carry a gun, he decides to fight Fletcher and Wilson, the town enemies, in order to save Joe Starrett’s farm.
“He rode into our valley in the summer of ’89, a slim man, dressed in black. ‘Call me Shane,’ he said. He never told us more. There was a deadly calm in the valley that summer, a slow, climbing tension that seemed to focus on Shane. ‘There’s something about him,’ Mother said. ‘Something...dangerous...’ ‘He’s dangerous all right,’ Father said, ‘...but not to us...’ ‘He’s like one of these here slow burning fuses,’ the mule skinner said. ‘Quiet...so quiet you forget it’s burning till it sets off a hell of a blow of trouble. And there’s trouble brewing.’”
The story of Shane is seen through the eyes of Bob Starrett, the farmer's boy who befriends Shane. Bob takes the reader out of the realm of adulthood. Looking at Shane and life through his eyes allows a different perspective, one of awe and reverence and one tempered by the boyishness of the Old West. More
This is the unforgettable novel of a boy’s love and a gunman’s struggle to escape his past. Shane, published in 1949, was made into a critically acclaimed movie in 1953 and became a standard by which later westerns were judged.
“The author has created a tale which captivates the reader’s attention from beginning to end. His skill in depicting a character, a situation, or a mood, with a minimum of words, gives the story a tightly woven quality often lacking in present-day novels. The book almost demands completion in one sitting.” (Library Journal)
“Its pace is steady. Its tension is of the uncoiling spring variety. It’s as clean as a hound's tooth.” (Saturday Review of Literature)
"Narrative and literary superiority." (Kirkus Reviews)
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The best western I have ever read
enigmatic, cold and sad
None as a western it sits alone in its insight. Probably should not be classed as a western really as most of the genre is pulp.
It delights makes me thoughtful and sad.
Not to be missed
- Gery Lynch