Brendan’s Alternate Tagline for The Last Outlaws:
Crime doesn’t pay unless you count the free bullets you get shot with.
The story of the Dalton Gang and the end of the Wild West.
Fact for Non-History People:
Emmett Dalton was shot 23 times and didn’t die.
Fact for History Nerds:
The Daltons were from a brood of 15 children.
My Take on The Last Outlaws:
I can’t think of a better pairing on subject with author than Tom Clavin and the Wild West. In fact, The Last Outlaws might be his best.
Clavin tells the story of the Dalton gang (and various others) as they act as a swan song for what we think of when we say the Wild West. As per usual, Clavin tells the story economically while also adding tangential tidbits along the way. I know other reviewers point out that sometimes these anecdotes could be cut from the narrative. This is definitely true at times, but I absolutely love them. To me, these side stories make it feel like you are sitting with an old outlaw at a bar as he tells you the stories of his life and the people he met along the way. I am not saying Tom Clavin is an outlaw (I haven’t run a background check, though), but he does have the light touch of a storyteller who knows exactly what you want to hear.
The most important thing to know is that this book gives you exactly what you expect and it’s a great ride.
(This book was provided as an advance copy by Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press.)
An absolute must read for Wild West nerds. Buy it here!