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BIG CABIN is a rare throwback treat. It exists in a time and place where the good guys wore white hats and endeared themselves, not just to an audience, but to an innocent love interest, their bosses, those they worked alongside and the townspeople at large. We trust them. And they do the right thing. What I enjoyed about the book most of all was its unabashed classicism in regards to the western genre. This is the kind of book they used to write. This is the kind of book scores of readers used to read. There’s adventure, mystery, cattle rustlers, dicy politics, swashbuckling, big business deals, gunfights. But there’s also romance, and sociology, there’s history and a bit of a soft-handed morality play. Add to that the excellent short stories and personal letters included (plus a heartfelt author’s note from Trevathan’s grandson who compiled and completed this volume). There’s simply a lot here, and not just for historians or western fans. There’s truly something for almost every kind of reader. Pick up BIG CABIN and travel back in time, both to a period of lawmen and outlaws across the wild west, but also to a time when these kinds of stories were still being written and entertained us all.
I love historical fiction, but this was my first book about the settlement of the West. From the colorful cast, mini love story and Wild West shoot-'em-ups, the author inspired fabulous scenes in my imagination. I was surprised to learn about the day-to-day challenges of building the railroads and how the local Cherokee and Pioneers interacted at a critical time in US history. Then, at the back of the book, there are wonderful extras -- poems, letters and short stories. I would be hard-pressed to pick a favorite, but the essay about the micro-cassette player, poem (clerihew) about Robinson Crusoe, and afterword by the main author's grandson/co-author are just a few of the little treasures that got me smiling...even laughing out loud. Wish I could have met Robert Trevathan -- I bet he would have done a spectacular audio version! Looking forward to sharing this book with my relatives in Oklahoma!