This is a great story. Full stop.
I enjoyed it from beginning to end.
The author does a tremendous job of leading the reader's thoughts in one direction before heading off in another, yet the second was always an option and is in no way incompatible with what came before. But I don't think his rating of "much sex" is appropriate: this isn't a stroke story and there is only enough sex to fit the plot line, not really too much.
The interplay between the characters is excellent. Settler/indian, townfolk/rancher, man/woman, young/old: all are explored and all are rational in retrospect. Seldom does anything go as one might anticipate. There are lots of surprises along the way, yet the reader is eminently satisfied.
The writer is sympathetic to the situation of the indians, yet the language and attitudes are not 2010's imposed on 1910's. It reads as authentic, and that makes it all pleasurable.
Is it worth reading? Only if you can read it from beginning to end without getting up, because if you have to stop and get up to do something else, you won't be able to concentrate on whatever else it is you need to do.
I hope that this review causes many people to go back and read the story, as it deserves to go through the limelight again. It's a fun read.
Reviewed: 2005-12-31 - (Review Updated: 2011-01-19)
My first thoughts on reading this tale about cowboys and indians was how bad the white men treated the Apache. Then I realised that Openbook must be at least one half Apache himself. Then I re-read it, and started chuckling about our Author's ability to capture the subtleties in the way the band of Apache treated the white man. And then I burst out laughing at the way Juanita caught herself a half breed for a husband who owned the water rights on his horse ranch, and then gave away a small fortune in land and cattle to his new wife's people, but retained the water rights to the land, and had the good sense to have three children to follow on the traditions.
But if you are looking for a good stroke story, this isn't it.
But enjoy just the same.