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The 1940s classic from the world's most celebrated Western writer! A gun cracked! The lantern in the deserted mine was smashed to bits. Then Jim Silver's great voice boomed through the darkness, "Barry Christian, I've come for you!" Christian screamed, not like a man but like a tortured woman. He was sick with fear. Somewhere in the blackness his worst enemy--a deadly enemy--was moving closer. . . closer. . . Christian took out his knife and held it in front of him. Then suddenly a fist boomed against his jaw!
Jim Silver hungered for action as most men hunger for food. He is known by the name "Silvertip" in the West and has two companions: a great horse, Parade, and his wolf, Frosty. The three are what Western Legends are made of. All hell breaks loose when the bank is robbed of a half million dollars. One of the four thieves escapes with the cash and hides out with Silvertip. The other three thieves shoot their way out of jail and they close in on Silvertip, the banker, the money and their double-crossing partner. In the canyons of Iron Mountain, there is enough hard-riding, bullet-slinging action exploding that it satisfies even Silvertip.
FIRST TIME IN PAPERBACK! Max Brand's novels and stories-certainly among the greatest in Western fiction-are always peopled with true, realistic characters and marked by a sense of authenticity few other authors could match. Three of the best examples of this are the short novels found in this collection, each painstakingly restored to Brand's original version. The opening novel tells the tale of a legendary friendship between two men who could take on a whole saloon of tough frontiersmen, but who run into trouble with beautiful Kate Malone. "The King of Rats" features the man known as Reata, a master of the rawhide rope, a man caught between his sense of duty and his love for a gypsy girl. And in the title novel, Joseph Larrimee finally makes a gold strike that would prove his worth to his family . . . but he's willing to give it all up to rescue a mysterious woman from a gang of hardcases.
When it comes to Western adventure, no author comes close to the three giants included in this landmark volume. These are the men who created the Western, shaped it, and perfected it. Now, for the first time in paperback, The Golden West collects three of their finest short novels. Max Brand's powerful Jargan is carefully restored to its original, full-length glory, with material never before seen. Tappan's Burro has long been considered one of Zane Grey's masterpieces, but only a shorter, edited version has been in print. The version included here was taken directly from Grey's actual manuscript and now appears in paperback for the first time. Louis L'Amour's The Trail to Crazy Man was rewritten years later as Crossfire Trail, which became the basis for the movie of the same name. Presented here is L'Amour's original version. These authors are the stuff of Western legend, and at last you can read their finest work as they themselves intended.
The King Bird had always escaped the traps set for him. He had defied posses to capture him, knowing he had the advantages of skill and guts. But now, trapped in this room, with men outside ready to kill him and a gun trained on his back, he felt that he had finally come to the end of his trail. This was one ambush he couldn't ride away from. The voice behind the door mocked him. "Good-bye, King. Sorry to be so rough. Ready, boys! Let it go!" The King Bird knew after an instant, when he smelled the odor of smoke and heard the crackling of flames on 'dry wood, that whatever hope there might be, there was none for him in this room. His only chance was to go outside and face those waiting guns....
Tommy Mayo seemed like just a loafer, but didn't fool former gambler and gunslick Henry Grant. When Grant heard that the rancher's son had leveled a hardened outlaw with one bullet, Grant knew he had found his man. Henry Grant needed protection and young Mayo needed a guide. But Mayo's knack for the gunslinger game was frightening. He tamed the fiercest and fastest stallion Grant had ever seen, dealt poker hands like a sharp, and drew a gun with the speed of lightning. With his cool nerve and shiny new revolvers, Mayo was burning for action. Grant had a wild plan of vengeance to wipe out his old gang, and Tommy was more than ready for his final death defying test in... THE MAKING OF A GUNMAN.
Prologue Books presents: A Western thriller from Max Brand. In The Man from Mustang, Silvertip hunts a man whose face he's never seen . . . And whose name he doesn't know! "The explosion of the shot echoed through the saloon. The moment before, a gun had glinted in the night through an open window. Now Buck lay on the floor, fighting for his life, trying to raise himself on one hand trying to breathe. He reached up and caught Silvertip's hand. He tried to speak, but only red bubbles of blood burst on his lips. "
As a youth, Lee Porfilo was always in trouble. If he wasn't knocking someone down, he was ready to battle any cowpoke who came along. But a penniless brawler couldn't stand up to the power of rich ranchers, and the Chase brothers would do whatever it took to defeat Lee - even frame him for murder. Desperate and alone, Porfilo had to choose between the hangman's noose and a wild bid to prove his innocence His every move dogged by lawmen and bounty hunters, he fled into the wilderness. But a man couldn't run forever, and Lee Porfilo would rather die facing his enemies head on than live as an outlaw and coward.
Tom Derry owed Buck Rainey his life--twice over. When Rainey saved him from an angry bull, Tom thought that here was a good and brave man. When Rainey helped him fight some men who wanted his blood, Tome knew that if there was ever anything he could do for Buck, he'd do it gladly. Rainey knew this too. So he asked Tom to help get his friend Barry Christian out of jail--and out of a hanging. Tom figured that if Christian was Buck's friend, he couldn't be a murderer. And when Buck said the Jim Silver, the man who'd put Christian behind bars, was a lying, scheming killer, Tom had no reason to doubt him. So Tom helped Christian escape--and was repaid by being sent on a ride on Christian's horse, the horse whose trail Silver was tracking. When Silver caught up with him, Tom though that he was finished. But Jim Silver knew a decent man when he saw one, and let Derry go. It was then that Tom realized the truth: Christian was a killer, and if he had the chance, he would kill Silver. Tom knew he had to stop him somehow--even if it meant doublecrossing the man who had twice saved his life.
"Raisin' Hell is a Profitable Crop!" said the man with the shotgun, and Templar was beginning to believe him. The sheriff offered Templar $50 a week; the saloon owner offered him $75. What had Templar done to command these magnificent offers? He'd gone into the town of Last Luck, gotten drunk and laid out almost every able-bodied man in town. But there was still another offer to come. A very rich man would pay him $5,000 for a month's service as a bodyguard. When Templar gasped at the price, the rich man looked at him earnestly. "I live," Condon said, "in constant fear of murder."
Maimed by his injuries, Peter Hale battled the Westerner's scorn for a cripple, and brought new life and prosperity to the family ranch. Then he dropped out of sight.
It was a one shot kill . . . But it wasn't the man Silvertip meant to kill. It was just a kid wearing Bandini's cape. And while Silvertip wasn't denying he pulled the trigger, it was Bandini who set the youngster up, sending him out of the saloon to die like a dog. It should have been the back-shooting, throat-cutting Bandini who bled his life away into the dust of that dark alley. Before the young boy's corpse was cold, Silvertip made an oath. He'd track down the kid's kin. And whatever the youngster was supposed to do, he'd finish the job. Then he'd find Bandini and kill him proper. Though it was a crying shame you couldn't kill a man like Bandini more than once . . .
Bill Gary was near death. Blood gushed from the gaping wound inflicted by the giant wolf who now lay stunned at his feet. Slowly, agonizingly, he drew a diagram, stuffed it inside his dead dog's collar, and fastened the collar around the neck of the wolf. Then, with excruciating effort, he opened the trap and released the wolf. In that collar Gary had tucked a map to the location of a vein of gold he had discovered only hours before. This most vicious of timber wolves was now guardian and executor of his estate. And Silvertip, to carry out the dead man's wish, must find Frosty, the wolf.
Silvertip's Roundup is and Old Western tale of adventure told by Max Brand, one of America's favorite western writers. Brand tells the story of the legendary Arizona Jim "Silvertip" Silver, who shoots fast, stays cook, and brings to justice killers and thieves who make a habit of taking the law into their own hands. When Barry Christian, one of the West's most detestable law breakers, starts making trouble in Horseshoe Flat, Silvertip is ready to take him on in his inimitable style. Silvertip joins forces with Taxi, a cunning safecracker and ex-con from New York. Together Silvertip and Taxi set out to hunt Christian down and teach him an unforgettable lesson.
Young Rap Brender had left home after a quarrel with his father. When the old Judge asks Arizona Jim Silver to find his son, the legendary Silvertip agrees because Rap has joined the gang of Barry Christian, the outlaw king and Silvertip's sworn enemy. Silvertip's search for Brender leads him through towns totally corrupted by Christian's evil genius, to a desert oasis transformed into an outlaw paradise. Here Silvertip finds Brender. He continues to pursue Christian across smoldering desert sands and into icy mountain passes. It is a chase that can end only in death, for Silvertip and Christian have vowed to make this their final clash.
Steve Wycombe was a low-down snake till the day he died . . . and even after death. To his three worst enemies--Morris Delgas, Harry Rutherford, and Jim Silver--he left his land, stock, and cash. It was his last evil plan, shrewd and vindictive. To profit from his inheritance, the three would have to run his ranch together. Wycombe knew the criminals, Delgas and Rutherford, wouldn't cooperate with the honest Silvertip. Sooner or later there would be violence and bloodshed. Wycombe would have wanted it that way.
At 30, Bill Naylor had spent half his life behind bars. Free again, and while looking for a new job, he saves a man from drowning. The rescued man turns out to be Barry Christian, the outlaw king. Naylor, rewarded with a top job in Christian's gang, thinks his fortune's made. But Christian's deadly enemy is Arizona Jim Silver--the legendary Silvertip. Silvertip has vowed to bring Christian to justice. Naylor, who know firsthand about Silvertip's courage and fairness, realizes that Silvertip, his friend, is the more formidable of the two giants. Then Christian plans the crime of his career, a daring robbery that will make the gang rich. For Naylor it is the one chance of a lifetime--until Naylor learns that Christian's plot calls for Silvertip's death.
Many men had set out to capture a magnificent stallion named Parade, but none had yet triumphed through the hardships to gain the ultimate prize. Silvertip was a dangerous cowboy who could rip out the heart of a mountain lion with his bare hands, and when he hunted Parade he took only a rope and raw courage. But trailing him, guns at their sides, were two killers who wanted the cowboy as badly as they wanted the horse.
WHITE CHEYENNE! Thunder Moon was the adopted son of the great and powerful warrior Big Hard Face, unaware that he was born the son of a white man. And though he grew bigger, stronger than the other Indian boys, he was not accepted by the tribe's elders. For he was not their equal in swimming, riding or wrestling. And most hateful of all, he could not bear pain. Until the day a water snake's fangs bit into his flesh, the Sky People sent him a sign, and an adventure began that would make him a legend among his adopted people.
"Your brother left the hotel two weeks ago. We have heard no word from him . . . "Travel in Alkali Valley, as you know, is dangerous. We think you should be informed of his continued absence. " That was the letter that brought Ben Trainor to a godforsaken spot in the desert. And a warning from the sheriff to leave while he still had the chance only deepened the mystery. But with the help of his good friend Jim Silver--Silvertip--Trainor was determined to find his brother, even if they had to shoot their way past all the bushwackers in the valley!
The outlaws chasing Silvertip were the deadliest in the West. They wanted the famous man - and the six-shooters they carried always got them what they wanted. But with his mighty horse, Parade, and his faithful deadly wolf, Frosty, Silvertip was the hardest man alive to catch. That was until Barry Christian stole Silvertip's great animals, leaving him to fight just like every other man. Now, with guns drawn, Silvertip and Christian faced each other to settle their old feud once and for all!
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