by Louis L’Amour
Narrator: Jason Culp
Length: 5 hours 52 minutes
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Narration: 4 cups
Bill Canavan rode into the valley with a dream to start his own ranch. But when he managed to stake claims on the three best water holes, the other ranchers turned against him.
No one is more determined to see Canavan dead than Star Levitt. Levitt is an unscrupulous businessman who has been accumulating cattle at an alarming rate. Suspicious after witnessing a secret meeting between the riders of warring ranches, Bill begins noticing other dubious behavior: Why is Levitt's fiancee, Dixie Venable, acting more like a hostage than a willing bride-to-be?
Canavan doesn't have much time to figure out what's going on. The entire valley is against him, and everyone is ready to shoot on sight.
Please welcome Sophia Rose to Caffeinated as she takes us to the western frontier. Today she shared her thoughts on the audio version of Where the Long Grass Blows by Louis L’amour. Saddle up and enjoy!
Sophia Rose’s Review
When I crave a visit to the rough Western frontier and a colorful story about the people of the West, I reach for a Louis L’amour book more often than not. I get a real sense of time and place and a man of the moment from his stories. I was so glad to see his books being produced for audio so I could appreciate them in a whole new way.
Jason Culp was a first-time narrator for me, but I thought he did a great job telling a western story with its variety of western characters and their situations. Most of the characters are male and he gave them individual vocal mannerisms that fit what the story seemed to say about them. There were only a couple female voices which were well enough. I thought he really captured the spirit of L’amour’s writing.
Our hero in Where the Long Grass Blows has turned a corner in his life and decided that he needs to stop drifting and settle into one place for the long haul. Canavan has been many things and his life was shaped by hard experiences that honed him. He selects a ranching valley with all that he wants in land and circumstances. There’s a range war going on and he hopes to be there when the dust settles.
L’amour slowly reveals more about Canavan as the story progresses so that the reader learns that he’s not only and exactly what he seems from the opening lines. But neither are any of the people who he encounters in the valley and the town of Solidad. There are mysterious goings on all around and he has to figure out what is truly happening just for the sake of survival.
Bill Canavan has a meet-cute for the ages when a stunning lady rider insults his horse and he challenges her to a race. Dixie Venable is fire and vim. I liked her for much of the story and thought her a great match for Canavan. Though, I have to admit that she didn’t strike me as very bright and, when her part of the truth comes out in the end, I was a little letdown.
The gritty gun battles and showdowns were exciting. Just as the tension from the mysterious happenings kept me intrigued. I loved the cowboy camaraderie Canavan had with his new friends.
And of course those sweeping descriptions of setting and historical detail that put me right there in the moment.
All in all, Where the Long Grass Blows was a fantastic western interlude full of gritty, shoot ’em up action and a nice side of mystery and romance.
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Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library
My father-in-law was a big Louis L’amour fan but I’ve never read him. I’ve watched some classic Western movies lately and was surprised how much I enjoyed them so this book sounds like a good one – especially if I can get it on audio!
That’s neat that you shared the book connection with your FIL and that you could get into the older westerns. I think many of the old ones were Louis L’amour stories. Hope you get the chance to experience a few on audio. They picked some good narrators, Katherine.
I got the chance to read some of Louis L’Amour’s work in his Lost Treasures: Volume 1 book thanks to his son Beau L’Amour and I have to say his method of writing is mesmerizing.
You are so right, Leona. He grabs you by the first sentence and you’re right there in the story before you know it. I found Lost Treasures great for getting to know more about his writing style.
Geybie’s Book Blog
The genre is new to me but i’m intrigued. You make me want to give this a try with your awesome review, Sophia. Always a fan of yours and Kim’s writing. Thanks for sharing. ❤️
He writes the old-style western and historical adventure stories. It was fun to listen in. hope you get the chance to sample his stuff, Geybie.
And what a lovely compliment, thank you! 🙂
How fun to have a guest blogger! I joined a book club last year and the book we read was News of the World. One member believed it had an MGM ending. That was the first western I’ve ever read. I will check out this author.
I’m not familiar with News of the World. I’ll have to check it out, Stefanie. 🙂
It’s very fun to guest review.
I’m not much of a reader when it comes to westerns, but I do enjoy a movie based on a Louis L’Amour novel. Thanks for the post.
I still haven’t seen all the movie adaptions, but I loved Conagher and The Sacketts.
Great review Sophia Rose I love how you’re going back to the greats of so many genres!!
Thanks, Debbie! They are re-releasing some good ones and the library shelves are hooking me in with the oldies, but goodies, too. 🙂
Can a book be too much fun? I’m gonna find out. hehehe
Anna from elements of emaginette
Not when its written well. I love his style and how I feel right in the moment with all my senses engaged. 🙂
Ohhh old school :=)
He’s a classic. So good. 🙂
I really love L’amour’s writing. He instantly transports you to the world he is crafting. I remember devouring a collection of short stories by him when I was in high school, and I’ve been a fan ever since!
Oh yes, his short stories are so easy to grab up and get pulled in. You’re right on the button about how he drags the reader into the story, Ethan. 🙂
I have not read a western like this in a while, I think I prefer the movies because of the visual I get from it, but wonderful review!
So true, Lily. I loved watching Silverado on the big screen and getting that fabulous music. 🙂
Next time I’m in the mood for a Western I’ll keep this one in mind.
Oh, yes, do, Mary. Quintessential western, here. 🙂
Wow, it has been awhile since I read a Louis L’Amour book. This sounds good.
The re-releases on audio caught my eye and I realized that I missed his books and had to listen. Definitely going back for more, Nadene!
Tyler H. Jolley
Hey Sophia! Dang, I haven’t read a Louis L’Amour book in a minute. It’s nice to see a review again.
Yes, I was the same, Tyler, but when Beau L’amour started re-releasing his dad’s stuff on audio, I just had to. 🙂