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The Last Ranch: A Novel of the New American West (The American West Trilogy #3) (Paperback)
When Matthew Kerney returns to his ranch in the remote, beautiful San Andres Mountains of New Mexico, honorably discharged after serving in Sicily during World War II, he must not only endeavor to recover physically and emotionally from a devastating combat injury, but he must also fight attempts by the U.S. Army to seize control of his land for expanded weapons testing. Yet keeping his land is only half the battle as he struggles with an aging father no longer able to carry his load at the ranch, an ex-convict intent on killing him, and a failing relationship with a woman he dearly loves. As Matt’s personal and family life unravels, a punishing drought pushes him to the brink of ruin, and he is forced to draw upon all his mental and physical resources to keep his world—and the people in it—from collapsing.
Spanning the era from World War II to the end of the Vietnam conflict, The Last Ranch enthralls with the deeply rich, sometimes heartbreaking Kerney family saga as it steps brilliantly into the mid-twentieth-century world of the new American West.
“[In Matt], McGarrity serves up a tough but tender cowboy."—Kirkus Reviews on The Last Ranch
“Closing the book after the final page of the saga may invoke emotions of losing a good friend. For the past four years McGarrity fans have been there through the Kerneys’ struggles and triumphs, the victories and injustices, and the successes and heartaches. It can be kind of tough saying adios to fellow New Mexicans that have lived and loved, thanks to the life the skilled storyteller McGarrity has breathed into them.”—Alamogordo News on The Last Ranch
"The writing captures the pride of the past and the value of heritage that continues to guide future generations of families bonded to the land and all its creatures."—New Mexico Stockman on The Last Ranch
"A joy to read."—The Western Writers of America Magazine on The Last Ranch
“Full of adventure . . . McGarrity’s writing is as clear as the desert air at the Kerneys’ 7-Bar-K Ranch, and he has a talent for telling good stories.”—The Santa Fe New Mexican Weekly Magazine of Arts, Entertainment & Culture
"McGarrity’s well-researched details about life in New Mexico during the Great Depression will appeal to historical-fiction fans, and his details about life on the ranch will appeal to readers of fiction set in the West."—Library Journal on Backlands
"McGarrity's narrative is picturesque and enjoyable and sets the stage for the trilogy's final installment."—Publishers Weekly on Backlands
"Backlands is a coming-of-age story. . . . An epic novel with a grand sweep of the West."—The Denver Post
“Any readers interested in the Western genre will be delighted by McGarrity’s take on harsh frontier life, and loyal fans of detective Kevin Kerney will be excited to see this prequel.”—Library Journal on Hard Country
“A well-rendered neoclassic tale of the Old West, worthy of a place alongside Lonesome Dove and Sea of Grass.”—Kirkus Reviews on Hard Country