Dragon Drive on Terul
Spring Lake Books
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These are works of fiction. The characters and situations are nothing more than inventions of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to real persons, places, or institutions on Earth is purely coincidental.
Most of us love a good western and/or cowboy tale (which aren’t necessarily the same thing, but often are). We may be reluctant to admit it in the company of our “cultured” and “literary” friends, but it’s often true nevertheless. The wild and untamed settings, the more elemental characters, and the big struggles that really matter—these are the things that conspire to make us love westerns and cowboy stories.
It’s all there much like it is in, say, the Odyssey—man battling unyielding nature, man conquering beasts, man overcoming savagery, man against himself, man seeking a home. These are the ingredients of all good stories.
But in westerns it’s the setting primarily that allows a large, adventure-filled, moving, and morally (most often) unambiguous narrative portrayal of these struggles. Trouble is, though, the requisite settings have almost disappeared. Certainly, the nineteenth-century American West is gone. Similarly, in our modern, technologically advanced world, it’s increasingly hard to find models for main characters with the self-reliance and resourcefulness and rugged individualism that formerly defined Americans.