The Feud


The Feud by Amelia Bean

The Feud, a classic western by Amelia Bean, is based on real history. The Graham-Tewksbury feud, also known as the Pleasant Valley War,  was a violent dispute between the sheep ranchers and the cattlemen in Northern Arizona. This book offers a highly romanticized version of events, but is still enjoyable in the telling. I didn’t get much of a sense of history from the book itself, vague and character-driven as it was. The lack of historical focus minimizes the actual historical record. Despite its many flaws, i enjoyed it immensely.

A good ol’ shoot-em-up, The Feud comes to life through the romanticized and rugged speech of the Old West: “There was affectionate concern on Granpa’s weatherbeaten face. “There’s this, too, son” he said. “Don’t turn your back on none of ’em. For if my figgerin’ is anywhere near right, there’ll be hired guns in the valley. And that breed of polecat would a heap sooner bushwhack a man than face him!”

Indeed they would, Granpa. Indeed they would.

The Feud was originally published by Doubleday in 1960, and my mass market paperback, one of  Pocket Book’s Permabook  line, is a first printing from May, 1962.



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