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Ride the Red Earth

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Book Details

Title:Ride the Red Earth
Wellman, Paul Iselin   
(13 of 14 for author by title)
The Walls of Jericho (Jericho #2)
Portage Bay
Published:   1958
Publisher:Doubleday & Company, Inc.
Tags:fiction, historical

Only a few wanderers like Louis Juchereau de St. Denis had ever ridden the red earth from the San Pedro to the Red River. This Chevalier de St. Denis is portrayed in Wellman’s new novel not so much as a soldier of fortune but rather as fortune’s fool. Ten years in the service of the aging Louis XIV have won him little more than the buckskins he is wearing when he emerges from the bush outside Mobile at the start of this story. Within a week, as luck would have it, he is back in the bush, exiled to the farthest outpost of the Louisiana Territory. Chance and mischance lure him all the way to Mexico City where, in the Audience of Torments of the Spanish Inquisition, it looks as if the game is surely over. Women pursue Louis as relentlessly as he does fortune, and unavoidable duels with intolerant husbands result in his sad pilgrimage from Madrid to Mobile. In Mobile his attraction for a certain La Demoiselle results in a very early departure.—New York Times, March 30, 1958. [Suggest a different description.]

Pages:456 Info

Author Bio for Wellman, Paul Iselin

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Paul Iselin Wellman (October 15, 1895—September 17, 1966) newspaperman, writer of popular history, novelist and screenwriter, is best known for his books set in the Great Plains and Kansas. His two best-selling novels, The Walls of Jericho (1947) and The Chain (1949), both Literary Guild selections, are set in Kansas towns which closely resemble Dodge City and Wichita, respectively. Both novels received mixed reviews from the critics. But on one thing, all who wrote about Wellman’s books agreed: the Kansas setting is a totally authentic ingredient.

Paul Wellman came to Kansas via Oklahoma and Africa. He was born in Enid, Oklahoma on October 15, 1895. At six months, his parents went to Angola to become medical missionaries. Paul mastered the language of the Bantu of the Umbundu tribe, helping his father translate songs and sermons. He returned to Kansas and finished school. After the war, Wellman returned to Wichita and took a job as a reporter for the Beacon. He moved over to the Wichita Eagle and began writing accounts of the Great Plains Indian wars. Wellman was then hired by the Kansas City Star, where he worked on the telegraph desk and wrote editorials and headlines. In the meantime, he kept at his writing which resulted in an output of 31 books in the period 1934-1966—almost one published book per year. Wellman died in 1966 of stomach cancer, three weeks after receiving an honorary doctorate from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Paul Wellman is remembered as a man of the Great Plains who made a sincere attempt to portray Kansas and the people of Kansas.

Source: washburn.edu/reference/cks/mapping/wellman

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