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Hondo by Louis L'Amour

Hondo (1953)

by Louis L'Amour

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8042217,317 (3.79)21



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Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
All right, four stars it is. Classic L'Amour, everything you could want from a Western and then some. For the 1950s, a surprisingly multi-faceted take on the Apache/white conflict. The history of the work (first a short story, then a film, then a novel based on the film that actually released before the film) is fun to know. I'm not sure any of the book's additional scenes are strictly necessary; when I want to revisit the story, I'll probably just watch John Wayne. But I'm glad to have read it as well. ( )
  AmandaGStevens | Mar 2, 2019 |
I decided I would try reading a new genre, Westerns, and found this classic at random. The writing is good- beautiful descriptions of the landscape and of the personalities and actions of the characters. But, it's full of senseless violence, racial hatred and genocide, and emotionally stunted macho men. Sorry, but this just isn't my thing. ( )
  belgrade18 | Apr 7, 2018 |
Part of my work in this Readers Advisory class I'm taking is to read from outside my typical genre. Although I read a lot of fiction, I don't tend towards genre fiction so that ought to make it easy to choose. I've most certainly read fantasy and sci-fi novels, and with having read all of Austen and books like [b:The Blue Castle|95693|The Blue Castle |L.M. Montgomery|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1442108651s/95693.jpg|1298683] I wouldn't call myself unfamiliar with certain subgenres of romance, and while I wouldn't say I read a lot of horror I think of Shirley Jackson and [b:House of Leaves|24800|House of Leaves|Mark Z. Danielewski|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1403889034s/24800.jpg|856555] and the spooky October reads I find for myself, and I've read too much Agatha Christie to say I don't read mysteries. Nonfiction? Well, philosophy and Augustine's [b:Confessions|27037|Confessions|Augustine of Hippo|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1266454051s/27037.jpg|1427207] and writing books, so again, while I could extend my reading of subgenres within any of those categories, there was only one where I really hadn't had recent/significant encounters with. (Okay, that's a bit of a lie because [b:My Ántonia|17150|My Ántonia|Willa Cather|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1389151307s/17150.jpg|575450] shows up now and then on Westerns lists, but not everyone would count it.)

So here we are. Westerns. I tried to start with [b:Riders of the Purple Sage|90160|Riders of the Purple Sage|Zane Grey|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1320415192s/90160.jpg|2663060] but it was so ridiculous I put it down for a bit. I took up this one instead, wanting to find the pulpiest most Western-y of Westerns before I moved on to more diverse subgenres. And this is just what you'd expect with a man who is Fraught but Strong and loves his Dog and Woman, and who Respects the Indians but also kills them. (He has lived with them, learned from them, but he's also a white man and better at Apache skills than any actual Apache. Because that's how it always is.) He doesn't kill the Good Indian but we the readers are supposed to be glad he's dead anyways because it makes the plot nice and neat.

I was aware before I started this assignment that I would be reading some stereotypes of Native Americans and would see violence, both of outright and insidious kinds, enacted against them in many of these books. It is exactly what I expected, exactly what you see in the old Western TV shows, or even Westerns that aren't that old at all.

It's also just what you expect in terms of characterization and romantic development. I'm pretty sure I could've described these characters to you before I ever read the book. It succeeded in being the most typical Western novel imaginable, which works for my purposes.
  likecymbeline | Apr 1, 2017 |

The Little Free Library has a whole new selection of books. There were two by Louis L'Amour - The Way the West Was Won and Hondo. I looked at Way and noticed that it was based on the movie. Also it was longer. So I got Hondo - my only purpose was to see whether I liked this author. As it turns out, Hondo is also based on the movie, although the movie in this case was based on a Louis L'Amour short story.

I enjoyed it. And I might read other books he wrote. But it's not high on my all-time favorites list - wouldn't read it again.

By the way, although I had seen the movie, I didn't picture Hondo as John Wayne. Paul Newman, as in Hombe.
( )
  CarolJMO | Dec 12, 2016 |
Blah...felt like it wasn't a m/m pairing, more of an f/f pairing. ( )
  SheReadsALot | Jun 20, 2016 |
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He rolled the cigarette in his lips, likeing the taste of the tobacco, squinting his eyes against the sun glare.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
He was a big man, wide-shouldered, with the lean, hard-boned face of the desert rider. There was no softness in him. His toughness was ingrained and deep, without cruelty, yet quick, hard and dangerous. Whatever wells of gentleness might lie within him were guarded and deep ... He was Hondo Lane, a man not soon forgotten by those he encountered on the danger trail.

    That's Hondo Lane!

    Lowe came to his feet quickly and caught Hondo by the shirt front. "Wait a minute!"
     Hondo looked at the hand gripping his shirt, then lifted his cold eyes to Lowes. "I just bought that shirt," he said mildly.
    Lowe started a punch. It was the wrong thing for Lowe to do. Hondo's left hand knocked the grip loose form his shirt and he stepped inside the looping left with a vicious fright upper cut to the chin.
     He had started to turn away when Lowe went for his gun.
    "Not in the back!" someone yelled. "Leather it!"
     Turning swiftly, Hondo kicked the gun from Lowe's hand, smashed a right into Lowe's hand, smashed a right into Lowe's stomach, and slapped him, a powerful, brutal slap that jarred Lowe half around.
    Then Hondo picked him up by the scruff of the neck and the seat of the pants and heaved him out the door into the dirt.
    Ed Lowe rolled over, his body alive with hatred, and he stared up at Hondo. "You ain't heard the last of this!" he said thickly.
    "Then I'll keep listenin'," Hondo said, turning back into the saloon.
   The two men seated outside had not moved. One's cigarette glowed red.
    "I'll kill him!" Lowe said into the night. "I'll kill him for this!"
      The cigarette glowed briefly. "IF I was you," the voice was mild, "I'd figure I was lucky he wasn't packin' a gun. That's Hondo Lane!"
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553280902, Mass Market Paperback)

He was etched by the desert’s howling winds, a big, broad-shouldered man who knew the ways of the Apache and the ways of staying alive. She was a woman alone raising a young son on a remote Arizona ranch. And between Hondo Lane and Angie Lowe was the warrior Vittoro, whose people were preparing to rise against the white men. Now the pioneer woman, the gunman, and the Apache warrior are caught in a drama of love, war, and honor.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:23 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Synopsis: Two men. One woman. A land that demanded courage - or death..He was a man etched by the desert's howling winds, a big, broad-shouldered man who knew the ways of the Apache and ways of staying alive. She was a woman raising a young son on her own on a remote Arizona ranch. And, between Hondo Lane and Angie Lowe was the warrior Vittoro, whose people were preparing to rise against the white men. Now, the pioneer woman, the gunman, and the Apache warrior are caught in a drama of love, war, and honor.… (more)

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