Book Review by David R. Chicoine 6/3/03
The Guns of the Gunfighters: Lawmen, Outlaws & Hollywood Cowboys by Doc O'Meara. 208 pages, hardcover, 200+ B&W photos with a 16 page color section. $34.99 plus $4. P&H Order this book online from: Krause Publications, Dept. BNP, P.O. Box 5009, Iola, WI 54945-5009 (800) 258-0929
The latest look at the ever-popular topic of gunfighters The Guns of the Gunfighters: Lawmen, Outlaws & Hollywood Cowboys focuses on both the men who have become the stuff of legend, and on their "tools of the trade", about which there is never a lack of interest. But O'Meara has taken the topic of the gunfighter one step further by recognizing, correctly, the heavy influence of Hollywood on western lore and ultimately, on our view of history. With that in mind, this book is divided into two sections that the author calls the "Real Gunfighters", and the "Reel" gunfighters (the actors) that latter part takes into account the weapons used by some of our most beloved cowboys and gunfighters of TV and the silver screen.
With wonderful photography and help from the Autry Museum of Western Heritage and the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Museum, among others, this new book is a fun look back at some genuinely tough, occasionally desperate hombres, as well as at some hombres who looked pretty tough on the TV and in the movies, but who were, lest we forget; only prentending. Doc O'Meara has done an excellent job and has presented us with a very interesting and colorful comparative look at the two; the reality of, and the fiction about the old west.
If you enjoy reading about the gunfighters, outlaws and lawmen of the old west and you like movies made about the old west, I think you will find this blending of the two captivating. Honestly, I think I have probably been having altogether too much fun reading this book, but I'm going back for another read later today!
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