Cover image for The Virginian
Title:
The Virginian
Author:
Owen Wister
Subject:
Date:
2010-12-20
Digital Format:
Hoopla Audio Book

Summary

Summary

A strong, silent stranger rides into the lawless lands of the western frontier, battles horse thieves, deals with unyielding scoundrels, and wins the heart of a schoolmarm. Owen Wister's 1902 classic-the first great novel of the American West-is rich in moral drama and vernacular wit. His hero-like knights of old-lives by an enduring code of chivalry and is governed by quiet courage and a deep sense of honor. Set in the vast Wyoming territory, this masterpiece helped establish the code of the West and its stereotypical characters: the genteel but brave cowboy, the pretty spinster from back East, and villains beyond redemption. The novel is also on record for incorporating the first known "shootout" in American literature. In 1977, The Virginian was voted by the Western American Writers as the greatest western novel of all time. Brimming with action, romance, and atmosphere, it remains a classic of frontier fiction.


Author Notes

Owen Wister was born Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on July 14, 1860. He graduated from Harvard University in 1882 and studied musical composition in Paris for two years. He spent the summer of 1885 in Wyoming for his health. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1888 and was admitted to the bar in 1889. He practiced law for two years in Philadelphia and continued to spend his summers in the West.

In 1891, after the acceptance by Harper's of two of his Western sketches, he decided to pursue a literary career. His works included Lin McLean, The Virginian, Lady Baltimore, and Roosevelt: The Story of a Friendship, 1880-1919. He also wrote a number of children's books. He died on July 21, 1938.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Considered by many to be the best Western novel, Wister's work essentially defined the genre, both in print and on film, and also created the archetypal Western hero: the strong silent type who rides in from the range and saves the day by shooting the bad guys full of holes. Like many in the genre, this also features a romantic subplot. This 100th-anniversary edition was produced in tandem with the Buffalo Bill Historical Center and has color and black-and-white art by Western artist Thom Ross. A beauty. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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