With the ending of By Sorrow's River, I am now three-quarters the way through reading The Berrybender Narratives by Larry McMurtry. I enjoyed this book, but it became a little tedious with all the discussion among the Berrybender daughters, mistresses, and so forth, of men and their faults and good points, as they walked and talked and diddled and dawdled their way across the prairies. Tasmin, the eldest daughter, and Victoria Kennet, the mistress of Lord Berrybender, and Mary and Buffum had a good deal to say about their and other's true loves, and three of the four ended up pregnant, by one of the men or another. Some more of the party gets wiped out by the Indians, including one of the balloon men, Hope-Tipping, and a couple of the servants.
However, the remainder of the party makes it to Bent's Fort, now under construction on the Arkansas River, and gets some much needed rest and renewal only to face another obstacle after the Sin-Killer takes off leading one of the Bent's expeditions to St. Louis. Oh, woe is me! What will the next volume contain? Will there eventually be a happy ending? Or? Or?
This book was hard to put down notwithstading those parts I considered a little tedious and I am anxious to see what happens to the Berrybenders. Mr. McMurtry has produced another interesting and well-written novel in my opinion and readers will not be disappointed.
This book is longer than the first two and some of the chapters are longer. I liked the short chapters in the earlier books.