THE TRAIL TO CRAZY MAN: Louis L’Amour’s Original Version

The uncut, unrevised original text, as L'Amour intended it.

Rafe Caradec had been raised to a hard life in a hard land where death lurked behind every bush and in most men's eyes. Only his courage and his gun had sustained him. That and the unflinching honor that had earned him the respect of everyone whose path he crossed.

Now that honor was about to lead him into deadly danger against the greatest odds he had ever faced. For Rafe had given his word to a dying man and could not go back on it. The man had been murdered by a cabal of greedy ranchers who wanted his land, and Rafe had sworn to protect that land for the man's wife and infant daughter.

But when he told her his story, the wife didn't believe him. She knew someone was after the ranch, and she thought it was Rafe. So she betrayed him into the hands of the very men who had killed her husband.

If Rafe Caradec lived, he would have to wage a one-man range war against impossible odds—and if he survived, he'd have to face a woman who wanted him dead.

This edition is based on the original magazine version of this novel as Louis L'Amour first visualized it. The Trail to Crazy Man was published in the July 1948 issue of the pulp magazine West. Later, he lengthened the story for his book publishers and change the title to Crossfire Trail. Some of his fans consider the novels as he wrote them for the magazines to be stronger than their subsequent expansions. L'Amour and other fans disagreed. Both camps agree that the original versions have all the strengths of his best writing and a taut, fast-moving pace that never stints on characterization.

With a special Introduction focusing on L'Amour's pulp career and pulp novels.

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Louis L'Amour