Monday, May 13, 2019

West by Carys Davies

by Carys Davies

Find out more about this book and author:

Published: 2018
Publisher: Scribner
Genre: Literary, Western
Hardback: 160
Rating: 5

First sentence(s):
From what she could see he had two guns, a hatchet, a knife, his rolled blanket, the big tin chest, various gabs and bundles, one of which, she supposed, contained her mother's things.

When widowed mule breeder Cy Bellman reads in the newspaper that colossal ancient bones have been discovered in the salty Kentucky mud, he sets out from his small Pennsylvania farm to see for himself if the rumors are true: that the giant monsters are still alive and roam the uncharted wilderness beyond the Mississippi River. Promising to write and to return in two years, he leaves behind his only daughter, Bess, to the tender mercies of his taciturn sister and heads west.

With only a barnyard full of miserable animals and her dead mother’s gold ring to call her own, Bess, unprotected and approaching womanhood, fills lonely days tracing her father’s route on maps at the subscription library and waiting for his letters to arrive. Bellman, meanwhile, wanders farther and farther from home, across harsh and alien landscapes, in reckless pursuit of the unknown.

My two-bits:

Just right for a quick western fix. Not a shoot 'em up kind of story. What I liked was the sense of adventure and quest for mythical (maybe) creature.


* Listened to audiobook version.


  1. I love the frontier stories like this. Interesting twist that he was in search of the creatures who belonged to the bones. I've read a while back of native legends that were passed down for hundreds of years about encounters with prehistoric animals that survived the Ice Age and hadn't quite finished dying out.

  2. I’ve wanted to read this book since before it came out, but I haven’t been able to find a cheap copy at a time when I have money. I’m glad you liked it!

    Aj @ Read All The Things!


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