Daniel Buck
McMurty on Custer & Connell on Billy
Sun Jan 09, 9:28

In his 2008 NYRB review of Custerology, Larry McMurty has this to say:

"Three times in the past twenty years I’ve been asked to write a book about Custer and the Little Bighorn, and each time I’ve pointed to Son of the Morning Star and asked why."

Speaking of Billy the Kid -- were we? -- apparently Connell had originally written a long rumination on Billy, which was to anchor a book of essays on the West. Said book morphed into Son of the Morning Star.

What became of the Billy the Kid essay?

    • Again, thanks for that link, Dan.olds, Sat Jan 08 18:16
      I had no idea. Terrific stuff. As a rule, I'm an abstract guy myself, but those images of Baskin's do resonate with me. When I first glimpsed the Custer image on the original hardback "Son of" cover, ... more
      • McMurty on Custer & Connell on Billy — Daniel Buck, Sun Jan 09 9:28
        • Beat me to that inquiry.olds, Sun Jan 09 11:31
          I was going to ask you. Apparently it was a 30-page consideration of Mister McCarty Bonney Kid. Do not know what became of it. (Are McConnell's papers archived at a university or historical society so... more
          • Re: Beat me to that inquiry.Daniel Buck, Sun Jan 09 12:10
            Bruce, Thanks. Did not know about Ondaatje's Billy saga, and to further expose my literary blinkers, that he wrote The English Patient. Good grief, this Google fellow I obviously just consulted is ... more
            • As I recall,olds, Sun Jan 09 14:01
              Ondaatje was savaged by a certain nationalist element in Canada for having the temerity to write about "American" subjects. Apparently Canada was peculiarly insular--and insecure--about its literary c... more
              • CanadaDan Brown, Sun Jan 16 12:38
                Canada is...well, Canada. Overrated by many. While Canada may appear to be a sort of idiot relative of ours, she got her land the same way we got ours - by taking it from them who had it first. Lift t... more
                • True, Dan.olds, Mon Jan 17 14:48
                  At least about the "similar kind of dirt," though if Canada can be characterized as "a sort of idiot relative of ours," I am happy to raise high a glass to idiocy. As someone who reads his fair sha... more
                  • More Canadian contributionsB.J., Tue Feb 08 1:09
                    Canada’s participation in the 1944 D-Day landing at Juno Beach. 14,000 well trained Canadian soldiers rapidly hit the beach and quickly moved inland which had an indirect effect of decreasing the defe... more
                    • Re: More Canadian contributionsDaniel Buck, Tue Feb 08 10:16
                      Excellent point. 12 or 13 (depending on who is counting) allied countries provided troops, with the US, Britain, and Canada landing the most. I will take this WWII nod to recommend a fine book tha... more
                  • There's a few exceptions. No doubtDan Brown, Mon Jan 17 22:55
                    I do admire Trudeau's willingness to go full blackface at a moment's notice. And also like us, Canada interred their Japanese citizens during WW2, for their own good, of course. They also keep the nat... more
                    • Oh, I wouldn'tolds, Thu Feb 10 13:35
                      suggest trusting Cohen, just listening to him, or better yet, reading him. "Beautiful Losers" is a terrific novel and there are a number of poetry collections that are worth a look-see as well. BTW... more
    • Leonard BaskinDaniel Buck, Sat Jan 08 9:14
      This I did not know. Leonard Baskin's mournful, seated Custer was originally a 1968 National Park Service poster: https://collections.vam.ac.uk/item/O111958/national-parks-usa-poster-baskin-leona... more
      • Dust jacket....B.J., Sat Jan 08 11:30
        Shortly after the 'Son of the Morning Star' television mini series in 1991, a new interest was generated in the book. When a new edition was released the dust jacket had an image of Gary Cole dressed... more
        • Ignorant?Rvn4fun, Mon Jan 10 12:37
          I cant stand to read that Custer was ignorant. That just is not very well informed. He is still the youngest general in history at 23 and maj general 25. Recognized by Sherman, Sheridan, McClellan ... more
          • Indian Scouts at the LBHDan Brown, Sun Jan 16 8:37
            This is an interesting link that might shed a little light on the various scouts working forthe 7th https://astonisher.com/the-twisted-saga-of-the-unsung-7th-cavalry-scouts-by-bruce-brown/
  • Click here to receive daily updates