Skip to main content

Book Review: The Law of Capture by Joe Totten

I have read many novels based on Western America, all promise sanguinary adventure and heroic deeds of a common man in the lap of nature. This one, too, was good. I hoped for a full-fledged story of one person with some substantial motto in life; however, in the story one man keeps changing his name and he is not a hero. He wore many hats in his life, such as outlaw, war fighter, cattle herder, rancher, Sherriff, detective, and above all an independent man. He didn’t care much of etiquette or sins that a man ought not to commit. Whatever he did with fewer protocols, he did to fit best in the game of world’s survival.

Often stories from Western, like Wanted Dead or Alive, The Big Sky and so on give outsiders like us a different picture of the USA. The earlier shades of civilization were not grey but black. Even in this book, the guy Corky Vance, found himself a misfit in the settling civilization. He wanted to be a man of law but fearless and forthright. However, his time – the book is divided into two parts – first as late nineteenth century – and secondly in the early twentieth century of motor cars and enigmatic trains.

Coming back in the story, Corky Vance when returned from a war longed for a life that is adventurous and far from the silent comforts of home. He tried to be a good man. Worked in a ranch but when the owner refused to pay, he beats the man to his death. That was all. He first starts making money by rounding astray cattle from one province to another with some other men. The only lurking danger is Indian tribes…different ones at different point of time.

Western novels are incomplete without that rustic touch of Indian tribes and tussle of white man with them. This book is poignant in reviving the early days of American civilization before it was kissed by industrial revolution and capitalism.

The main character in the story is Edward Valentine, with name changed. The book is full of stories of adventure and killing and nomadic ways of life of men. Also, it highlighted the difference between white people and the tribes. In most of the cases when Edward takes the role of Sherriff or as a hired assassin or detective, he finds Comanche or Osage as main culprits over others. Going by characters like Stares at the Sky, Shaw, Pine, there comes a complete sense of lawlessness. Could America be that land of total chaos and no law? Better you pick up this debut novel by Joe Totten.

There is wisdom, quotes, thoughts, and bit redemption. Well, in the case of action and adventure, leaving a few initial chapters, the book gains a sort of cliched pace. Same set of planning and encounters and killing and that gun protocol. I would have loved it more if the main character had a specific aim to follow than just killing people under various tags.

The overall narration is sprinkled with humour and the book could have been greater had it been less than 200 pages.

Best Buy from Amazon


Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond

Among all Ruskin Bond books, The Blue Umbrella has, so far, gathered immense applaud from readers and critics alike.  This is a short novel, but the kind of moral lessons it teaches to us are simply overwhelming. This is a story of Binya, a poor little girl living with her mother and an elder brother, Bijju, in a small hilly village of Garhwal. One day while herding her two cows back home, she stumbles upon some city people enjoying the picnic in the valley. She is enthralled to see them well-groomed and rich. She craves to be one like them and among many other things of their, a blue frilly umbrella catches her attention. She begins craving for it. On the other hand, the city people get attracted by her innocent beauty and the pendant in her neck. The pendant consists of leopard’s claw – which is considered a mascot widely in the hills. Binya trades her pendant off with the blue umbrella. The blue umbrella is so much beautiful that soon it becomes a topic of conversation fo

Poem Summary: Where The Mind Is Without Fear by Rabindranath Tagore

Poem by Rabindranath Tagore: Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high Where knowledge is free Where the world has not been broken up into fragments By narrow domestic walls Where words come out from the depth of truth Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way Into the dreary desert sand of dead habit Where the mind is led forward by thee Into ever-widening thought and action Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake. Short Summary: This poem is written by Rabindranath Tagore during pre-independence days, when India was a colony of the British. The underlying theme of the poem is absolute freedom; the poet wants the citizens of his country to be living in a free state. According to the poem, we see that the poet is expressing his views there should be a country, like where people live without any sort of fear and with pure dignity…they should

Character Sketch of Binya from ‘The Blue Umbrella’ by Ruskin Bond

The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond is a popular children’s story. It features Binya as the main character, though there are other important characters as well, but the story revolves around Binya and her little beautiful umbrella. The story is widely popular among children, thus it has also been included in the schools’ syllabus all across the country. Since it is often taught in the school, thus the character sketch of Binya is often demanded by students from year to year. Character Sketch of Binya from The Blue Umbrella by Ruskin Bond Binya is the main character of the novel ‘The Blue Umbrella’ by Ruskin Bond. Her full name is Binyadevi. As in the hills or anywhere in India it is a kind of trend to call children with their short nicknames. Binya’s elder brother’s name is Bijju, whereas his real name is Vijay. Binya aged eleven is a hilly girl. She lives with her small family in the hills of Garhwal. Her father died when she was two years of age. For sustenance, the