jmax brand

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jmax brand

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1fsfaust Primer Mensaje
Feb 19, 2008, 1:45pm

Just joined the group. My favorite author is Max Brand (pseudonym, along with about nineteen others), whose works are still being published some sixty years after his death. Among his novels (originalliy published in serial format in the pulp magazines of the twenties and thirties) that I like best are Destry Rides Again, Singing Guns, the Silvertip Series, and many more. He also wrote mysteries and other types of adventure yarns, and created the character of Dr. Kildare, famous in movies, television, comics, and other spinoffs. But it is his Western output for which he is most famous.He is usually ranked with Zane Grey and Louis L'Amour as the three most famous and significant Western writers of all time.
Any other fans out there?

2LouisBranning
Feb 19, 2008, 5:39pm

Hi jmax and welcome to probably the most ignored thread at LT. I've read several things by Brand when I was a teenager, along with both Grey and L'Amour too, and I always considered Brand a much more proficient writer than either. Please check out 'Western Message Board' thread, message #19 (I think), where I list my Favorite Westerns, and let me know what you think sometimes.

3fsfaust
Feb 20, 2008, 10:50am

I checked your list and you have some interesting favorites, and a lot that I have not read. I'd agree on OxBow Incident as being an outstanding novel, one that is outside the purely traditional shoot-'em-up variety. (I like the movie version, too.)
SHANE is one of my favorites (book and movie), one that I can re-read (or watch) every few years and still enjoy a lot. Of more recent writers, I liked McMurtry's ANYTHING FOR BILLY. U;ve seen LONESOME DOVE, but haven't read the book.
I collect pulp magazines, mainly Westerns, and like most of the writers who published there. I don't much care for the modern "adult" Westerns, nor the contemporary romantic dude-ranch kind of story (though I haven't read enough of either type to really judge.
I like L'Amour, in small doses. The Sackett series is the most enjoyable, to me. THE LAST OF THE BREED and THE HAUNTED MESA were okay, but nothing special. Zane Grey takes a little effort to get through but the ones I've read are okay.
Other writers I like include Steve Frazee, Will Henry, L. P. Holmes, and . . .well, too many to try to name them all.
Of more recent authors, I like Clifton Wisler's books for quick and uncomplicated reading.
(By the way, I didn't mean to put the "j" in the heading for this topic -- just "max brand." Itchy trigger finger or something let it slip in there. Don't know how to remove it.)

4highplains
Mar 2, 2008, 10:19pm

Hi! I'm new, too. I'd love to see this westerns group expand.

Couldn't help but respond when I saw you list Steve Frazee. Steve Frazee was a friend of my grandfather's in Salida, Colorado. I don't think I've read any of his westerns, though. I have Flight 409 and a Lassie book that he wrote.

I've read most of Louis L'Amour's books and Zane Grey. My grandfather gave me a grocery sack full of westerns before he died. Lately, the westerns I read tend to be historical fiction set in the west having more to do with women's stories than the traditional western.

5fsfaust
Mar 3, 2008, 1:55pm

I see a lot of what I guess are considered "Romance Westerns" though I don't collect them. They seem to be something like the "Harlequin Romance" type of story, judging by the covers. However, I do collect pulp magazines, and I have hundreds of the old "Ranch Romances" pulp, which was published from the twenties into the sixties. A lot of their stories were standard action yarns, with the "love" angle at a minimum.
There is also a Christian-themed genre of Western-background novels; I've read a few of them; their plots and action seem to be fairly close to the traditional Western formula.
I don't particularly care for the so-called "adult" Westerns with graphic sexual interludes, and seldom read any of the ones that I have, but they seem to proliferate.
Steve Frazee is one of the writers from the pulp era who is being reprinted nowadays, along with Lauran Paine, T. T. Flynn, Wayne D. Overholser, Les Savage, Jr., and a lot of others, all enjoyable reading.
There are some Yahoo groups specializing in Western fiction. One of the best is WesternPulps, started by James Reasoner, who (under his own name and several pseudonyms) is a major contemporary Western author. Hard to go wrong with any of his (or his wife's) books.
By the way, what is the title of the Lassie book by Steve Frazee? (published by Whitman?). I'll see if I have it.

6highplains
Mar 3, 2008, 2:36pm

The Lassie Book is Trouble At Panter's Lake. My copy is falling apart. It is published by Whitman.

I've been reading Jane Kirkpatrick's books lately. They are about women who traveled in wagon trains to northern California, Oregon and Washington. Not so much romances, but based on true stories of women.

I am writing a nonfiction book about my great-great-uncle who was a cattle rustler in the 1880's. His story includes his partner's lynching and the shooting of a town marshal by another rustler. I am also reading some outlaw-lawmen books.

There are a couple of good blogs on westerns. http://westernsfortoday.blogspot.com/ is done by Russell Davis.
http://saddlebums.blogspot.com/ has book reviews and author interviews. Both blogs mention that James Reasoner recently lost his house and studio in a fire.

I'll have to look for the reprints of the Steve Frazee books...

7fsfaust
Mar 8, 2008, 10:55am

The Lassie book I have is Mystery at Smelter's Cove, or something like that (I didn't write it down, thought I'd remember -- ha!). It is also by Steve Frazee, and published by Whitman.
I just got the newest Max Brand paperback, LUCK. According to the cover it is "Soon to Be a Major Motion Picture," though no details are given.The official Max Brand web site does not have any information either.
It would be interesting to know who-what-when about this movie project. Maybe it will start a boom in movies based on older Westerns, especially Brand's. I'd like to see a new version of Destry Rides Again that actually follows the book for a change.
Five Star publishes hardcover editions of Steve Frazee books, and Leisure puts out the paperbacks. There may also be some large print editions as well.
When do you expect the book on your relative's adventures to be pubished? I'll try to get a copy when it comes out.

8highplains
Mar 9, 2008, 5:44pm

I'll have to get the new Max Brand book. I haven't read one in a while. And, a new western movie would be great. I really liked 3:10 To Yuma, but my husband, the John Wayne afficianado, said it was okay.

It will be awhile before the book is published. I'm still researching and organizing it. The cost of gas has put a crimp in my research trips. And I still have several mysteries to solve. But, I do have a publisher interested in it, so I really want to get it finished this year. My blog about my research is listed on my LibraryThing profile.