Cover image for Louis L'Amour's lost treasures. Volume 2 : more mysterious stories, unfinished manuscripts, and lost notes from one of the world's most popular novelists
Title:
Louis L'Amour's lost treasures. Volume 2 : more mysterious stories, unfinished manuscripts, and lost notes from one of the world's most popular novelists
Uniform Title:
Works. Selections. 2019
ISBN:
9780425284926
Edition:
1st ed.
Physical Description:
xxxii, 536 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm.
Contents:
What is Louis L'Amour's lost treasures? -- Introduction by Beau L'Amour -- The Bastard of Brignogan -- Mac Ross -- Dam and timber -- The quest for the bear -- Kills bear -- Ben Mallory -- The death of Peter Talon -- The jade eaters -- The freeze -- Ben Milo -- In the measure of time -- The papago kid -- Krak des chevaliers -- Ibn Batuta -- Shanty -- Krag Moran -- Stan Duval -- Lowie -- South of Panama -- The rock man -- Borden Chantry II -- Acknowledgments.
Personal Subject:
Added Author:
Summary:
Wagon trains heading west were forced to defend themselves against Indians, cope with injuries and illness, and struggle to find food. The group of easterners Rock Bannon was scouting for faced another problem. They were being deceived. When he warned them to remain on the Humboldt Trail, Sharon Crockett and the others refused to listen. Mort Harper, a stranger riding a beautiful black mare, had dazzled them with his charm and good looks. The southern route was the best way to go, Harper told them. But best for whom? Bannon wondered. That route led straight to the Salt Lake Desert. The conditions would be brutal. And if Harper wasn't steering them toward those deadly alkali flats, where were they headed? And what would happen once they got there?
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Summary

Summary

Exploring the creative process of an American original, the Louis L'Amour's Lost Treasures series will uncover the hidden history behind the author's best known novels . . . and his most mysterious and ambitious unfinished works.

In this second volume, Beau L'Amour examines how his father made the transition from struggling pulp writer to successful novelist and uses his father's notes, journal entries, and correspondence to continue the process of seeking out how and why many of these never-before-seen manuscripts were written as well as speculating about the ways they might have ended.

These selections include the beginnings of a post-apocalyptic science fiction tale, a proposal for a nonfiction project based on the life of Renaissance era traveler Ibn Batuta, and two chapters of a historical novel set in India about the origin of L'Amour's well-known Talon family.

At the other end of the spectrum are classic adventures, such as "In the Measure of Time," a chance encounter set on the high seas, and a science fiction film treatment set in Mexico, as well as seventeen chapters of a novel that reappears throughout Louis's journals and letters and speaks to his fascination with post-revolutionary 1950s China, leading him so far as to correspond with the Dalai Lama.

With rare photographs and commentary, this book further maps the journey L'Amour embarked upon to become one of our greatest storytellers and the diverse realms to which his imagination traveled, making him a true American pioneer.


Author Notes

Born in Jamestown, North Dakota on March 22, 1908, Louis L'Amour's adventurous life could have been the subject of one of his novels. Striking out on his own in 1923, at age 15, L'Amour began a peripatetic existence, taking whatever jobs were available, from skinning dead cattle to being a sailor. L'Amour knew early in life that he wanted to be a writer, and the experiences of those years serve as background for some of his later fiction. During the 1930s he published short stories and poetry; his career was interrupted by army service in World War II. After the war, L'Amour began writing for western pulp magazines and wrote several books in the Hopalong Cassidy series using the pseudonym Tex Burns.

His first novel, Westward the Tide (1950), serves as an example of L'Amour's frontier fiction, for it is an action-packed adventure story containing the themes and motifs that he uses throughout his career. His fascination with history and his belief in the inevitability of manifest destiny are clear. Also present and typical of L'Amour's work are the strong, capable, beautiful heroine who is immediately attracted to the equally capable hero; a clear moral split between good and evil; reflections on the Native Americans, whose land and ways of life are being disrupted; and a happy ending. Although his work is somewhat less violent than that of other western writers, L'Amour's novels all contain their fair share of action, usually in the form of gunfights or fistfights.

L'Amour's major contribution to the western genre is his attempt to create, in 40 or more books, the stories of three families whose histories intertwine as the generations advance across the American frontier. The novels of the Irish Chantry, English Sackett, and French Talon families are L'Amour's most ambitious project, and sadly were left unfinished at his death. Although L'Amour did not complete all of the novels, enough of the series exists to demonstrate his vision.

L'Amour's strongest attribute is his ability to tell a compelling story; readers do not mind if the story is similar to one they have read before, for in the telling, L'Amour adds enough small twists of plot and detail to make it worth the reader's while. L'Amour fans also enjoy the bits of information he includes about everything from wilderness survival skills to finding the right person to marry. These lessons give readers the sense that they are getting their money's worth, that there is more to a L'Amour novel than sheer escapism. With over 200 million copies of his books in print worldwide, L'Amour must be counted as one of the most influential writers of westerns in this century. He died from lung cancer on June 10, 1988.

(Bowker Author Biography) Louis L'Amour, truly America's favorite storyteller, was the first fiction writer ever to receive the Congressional Gold Medal from the United States Congress in honor of his life's work, & was also awarded the Medal of Freedom. There are over 260 million copies of his books in print worldwide.

(Publisher Provided)


Reviews 1

Booklist Review

The success of the late western writer Louis L'Amour paralleled the growth of U.S. publishing in the twentieth century, from dime novels to magazine serials to paperbacks sold in bookstores. His first novel, No Traveller Returns (2018), finished by his son, Beau, displayed the skill that made him famous. This second volume of ""lost treasures"" (after Lost Treasures, v. 1, 2017) contains unfinished and unpublished work proposals, ideas, science fiction, crime stories that reveals L'Amour's extensive imagination, curiosity, and determination. He called all his work frontier stories, no matter where they were set his protagonists travel all over the world and beyond and he wrote whatever he thought would sell. Fame eluded L'Amour until the 1960s, when he perhaps best understood his audience. Now he is known as the storyteller of the American West. Fans, present and future, who sample L Amour's writing here will be struck by his apparently effortless prose and characterization, his prodigious output, and how experimenting shaped his writing.--Jeanne Greene Copyright 2019 Booklist


Excerpts

Excerpts

The Bastard of Brignogan Two Beginnings to a Historical Novel Chapter 1 Alone upon the darkening hillside I wait for the last lights to wink out. There stands the castle, well-guarded and strong, yet tonight I shall enter that castle. I shall scale its walls, open its doors of oak, walk down its silent halls, a sword in my left hand. In my left hand? I have no right hand. My right hand is gone, struck from the wrist by the order of he who rules this castle, rules it and all the land around. He will have forgotten me, for to him I was less than the dust beneath his feet, and the sight of my blood dripping to the floor before his eyes will have been drowned in the blood of others he has killed or maimed. Yet tonight he will remember, and for the brief moment of his life that follows he will swallow the gall of his hatred. He will die slowly and with time for regret. I will go alone, yet had I an army I would disdain to use it, for it is a part of my revenge that he realize my contempt of him, and of the power he wields. This must be done without help. Too long he has hidden behind his mighty walls, behind his armored men, and I will show him what a hand can do. Only one hand, and the hatred he fed into me when he deprived me of that which was all and everything to me. My right hand . . . You ask me . . . what is a hand? A hand is a delicate, yet a mighty thing. It can weave and weigh and strike and caress. It can grip a sword or wield a hammer, touch with tenderness or strike a blow that will crush bone. A hand can create a tapestry of silk, carve ivory or jade, create a goddess from raw marble, heal the sick or bless those who have sinned. A hand can lift a savage brute to the heights of creative skill. Was it not the hand that created Man? A lion walks in the jungle and steps upon a stone, and from it receives perhaps two impressions, a sense of hardness, of sharpness? Of something rough or smooth? But a man stepping upon that same stone experiencing the same things, can yet lift the stone, turn it gently in his fingers, feel its various sides, judge its weight and its balance. The lion receives perhaps two sensations, the man receives a dozen . . . perhaps more. So it is with each thing he touches with the hand, and with each touch his experience grows, and with it his knowledge. Truly, man was shaped and created by his own hands. Who am I? A man . . . no more, no less. Except . . . yes, there is a difference, for I am a man with a sword. Once I was more than that. Once I had a right hand, that could carve, shape, test and create. My hands were born to shape the still wood or stone into things of beauty, and within me there was naught but the wish to create. I asked for nothing but materials and time. The materials were all about me, and the time stretched before me forever . . . I was younger then and there seemed no end to the years. The will to create is still within me, but the left hand is not enough. The touch is there, as is the mind and the will, but a little something is lacking for the right hand was the master of art, the left only a servant to it. With my left hand only, I am skilled. With a right hand I was . . . who shall ever know, now, what I was or might have become? Since childhood I had shaped and carved wood into animals and men that could all but speak, and then stone . . . Apprenticed to an armorer, I learned to handle metal, to emboss, to inlay, to use a hammer with cunning. My skills increased . . . Then he took from me my hand. He, who rules in yonder castle. Who now drinks his wine, eats his food, and prepares for rest. His last rest. Impregnable they say, is the castle. No army has ever taken the castle of Gingee. He sits secure behind his walls, upon his towering peak, high above all that is about him. My boat lies by the distant shore. My men await me there. Beyond is the Bay of Bengal and a wide world of which my fellow Europeans know little. The artist I once was is dead, but something was born from the ruins, sired by hatred, mothered by a will for revenge. Now I am a warrior. A warrior with but one hand? Ah, yes . . . but a warrior trained as no other was ever trained, a warrior driven by such hatred as you cannot believe. He took from me the girl I loved. He took from me my dreams, all that I had or lived for. Nor was ever a man trained with the skills with which I have been trained. The teacher I had, the greatest master of his craft, a teacher without another pupil but me, a teacher so skilled even his former master feared him and wished him dead. Knowing his time was brief he strove to pass on to me those skills he had acquired in a life-time. My fingers open and close. Soon my time will come. No army has been able to storm those walls, or scale the mountain upon which the castle is built. No elephant has been able to batter down the giant gates with their steel-spiked doors. Behind those doors he sits, spinning out his evil like a great spider, hidden and protected. Tonight I shall face him . . . and he will be alone. Oh, he will have a blade! He will have one or I shall give him one, and it is said he is a master swordsman. Yet he will die. He will die alone with the cold steel of my blade in his guts, die in a pool of his own blood. Who am I? I am the Bastard of Brignogan. My father I saw once only, and well I remember the night he came to us. A night of storm fit to shiver the masts of many a tall ship when he came to our door and rapped on it with a sword-hilt to be heard above the storm. Ours was a poor cottage though I never thought it so, for beyond the harsh granite of the rocks lay the steep cliffs I loved and the long, lonely beach with the cold Atlantic rollers coming in upon it. Cold, did I say? Yes. But often indeed they were warm and pleasant for our shore was touched by a current I came to love for upon it were borne many odd things: strange woods, bits of wreckage, fragments of things from afar. There I splashed in the waves, tasted their salt, and there I looked upon the distance. My father was a tall young man, but he staggered from the wind's force and swore as he slammed the door against it. He removed his cloak with a flourish that scattered drops over the room and draped it across a chair. He swept the rain from his hat with a gesture and looked at my mother. She was brown and strong and beautiful, but with the fires of Hell in her blood. "There's nothing for you here," she said flatly, "so why have you come?" "Nothing for me? Once it was a different song you sang." "Long ago. I've forgotten the tune. What is it you want?" "I heard you'd borne a son of mine, and I wished to see what we spawned, you and me." "He is not your son. He is mine. You've strong lads of your own. Go to them." "I am his father, am I not?" "You were the sire. It ended there, and you've no more to do with him." He looked at her and laughed, from sheer pleasure. "Ah, girl! What a woman you are!" He looked at me. "Is this the one?" "There is no other. That is my son." The tall man dropped on his knee before me and put his hands on my two shoulders. His face was wet from the storm, and although I was scarcely three, I recall it well, for he was not a man to forget. Excerpted from Louis l'Amour's Lost Treasures: Volume 2: More Unfinished Manuscripts, Mysterious Stories, and Lost Notes from One of the World's Most Popular Novelists by Louis L'Amour, Beau L'Amour All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.