Legends cloud the life of Crazy Horse, a seminal figure of American history but an enigma even to his own people in his own day. Yet his story remains an encapsulation of the Native American tragedy and the death of the untamed West. Crazy Horse strips away the tall tales to reveal the essence of this brilliant, ascetic warrior-hero. Larry McMurtry's vivid, carefully considered, succinct biography will lure not only his own fans but history buffs, Western enthusiasts, students of all things Native American, and anyone concerned with the white man's atonement and restitution to native peoples. In a portrait that only he could render, Larry McMurtry captures the poignant passing of a time and offers a vibrant new understanding of the mythic Crazy Horse and what he stood for.
McMurtry's historical biography of Crazy Horse, the Sioux warrior who was a leader at the Battle of Little Big Horn, is one of two initial audio releases in the new Penguin Lives series. (The other is Marcel Proust by Edmund White, read by Barbara Rosenblatt). In each, an accomplished novelist tackles the short-form biography as a literary challenge (note: as audio programs, these are only "slightly" abridged). For McMurtry, this means reexamining the American Old West, the territory of his epic, multivolume fiction adventures (Lonesome Dove, etc.). Noting that almost nothing that Crazy Horse said was ever recorded, McMurtry relies on the historical record, interviews with elderly Sioux conducted early in this century and on his own thoughtful analysis of the general mood of the times. As audio, it's this sense of the author's fresh curiosity that keeps the program interesting. Actor Conger performs his narration in subdued tones, which respectfully reflect the academic spirit of McMurtry's project. Simultaneous release with the Viking hardcover. (Feb.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.