The Range Dwellers

PDF-file by B.M. Bower

The Range Dwellers PDF ebook download A short, pleasant read, though without too much in the way of plot. Bower didn't write in first-person that often, and she doesn't seem quite as comfortable with it—the narration is a little talky at times, but there's a fair amount of her usual insight and humor. As for the story—a millionaire's son who's gotten somewhat out of hand is sent out to Dad's ranch in Montana to reform. Years ago his father had gotten into a lively feud with some neighbors, the Kings, whose ill-will is still as strong as ever. Naturally our protagonist falls for their beautiful daughter. There's a jolt of added energy in his handful of encounters with peppery old man King, which are among the more entertaining scenes in the book. And there's an energetic car chase along toward the end. (Unusual for a Western? Not a bit—Zane Grey did it too.) The early scene in The Range Dwellers where the narrator arrives in Montana and is driven out to the ranch by a cowhand reminded me a bit of the beginning of The Virginian. There's a mention of The Virginian at one point, and I chuckled over what might have been another indirect reference in the name of a boat.

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