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Cover image for By sorrow's river
By sorrow's river
Publication Information:
Prince Frederick, MD : Recorded Books, ℗2004.
Physical Description:
10 audio discs (approximately 11.5 hr.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
Number in series:
bk. 3.
General Note:

Compact disc.
The Berrybender's party is moving forward across the Great Plains of the West towards Santa Fe. Tasmin's husband scouts ahead and falls in love with Pomp Charbonneau, who dies at the hand of the ruthless commander of the Spanish troops. A vast cast of characters meet up with the party as they travel, proving that the rolling grassy plains are not as empty as they look.
Added Author:


Call Number

On Order



By Sorrows River.

Author Notes

Larry McMurtry, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, among other awards, is the author of twenty-four novels, two collections of essays, two memoirs, more than thirty screenplays, & an anthology of modern Western fiction. He lives in Archer City, Texas.

(Publisher Provided) Novelist Larry McMurtry was born June 3, 1936 in Wichita Falls, Texas. He received a B.A. from North Texas State University in 1958, an M.A. from Rice University in 1960, and attended Stanford University. He married Josephine Ballard in 1959, divorced in 1966, and had one son, folksinger James McMurtry.

Until the age of 22, McMurtry worked on his father's cattle ranch. When he was 25, he published his first novel, "Horseman, Pass By" (1961), which was turned into the Academy Award-winning movie Hud in 1962. "The Last Picture Show" (1966) was made into a screenplay with Peter Bogdanovich, and the 1971 movie was nominated for eight Oscars, including one for best screenplay adaptation. "Terms of Endearment" (1975) received little attention until the movie version won five Oscars, including Best Picture, in 1983.

McMurtry's novel "Lonesome Dove" (1985) won the Pulitzer Prize in 1986 and the Spur Award and was followed by two popular TV miniseries. The other titles in the Lonesome Dove Series are "Streets of Laredo" (1993), "Dead Man's Walk" (1995), and "Comanche Moon" (1997). The other books in his Last Picture Show Trilogy are "Texasville" (1987) and "Duane's Depressed" (1999).

McMurtry suffered a heart attack in 1991 and had quadruple-bypass surgery. Following that, he suffered from severe depression and it was during this time he wrote "Streets of Laredo," a dark sequel to "Lonesome Dove." His companion Diana Ossana, helping to pull him out of his depression, collaborated with him on "Pretty Boy Floyd" (1994) and "Zeke and Ned" (1997). He co-won the Best Screenplay Golden Globe and the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for Brokeback Mountain in 2006. He made The New York Times Best Seller List with his title's Custer and The Last Kind Words Saloon.

McMurtry is considered one of the country's leading antiquarian book dealers.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 4

Publisher's Weekly Review

Molina keeps the bar raised high with his latest performance of McMurtry's third Berrybender Narrative. As with his readings of the previous two volumes, Sin Killer and The Wandering Hill, Molina creates richly nuanced voices for the many characters in this Wild West tale, from the energetic and innocent young guide Kit Carson to the comically selfish old Lord Berrybender, whose pursuit of drink, fornication and wildlife to shoot is what has brought his aristocratic, idiosyncratic and self-centered British clan to the wild and unforgiving Great Plains. This installment revolves around Berrybender's eldest daughter, Tasmin. Having married and mothered a child with the stoic and sometimes brutal frontiersman Jim Snow, also known as the Sin Killer, Tasmin's heart is now drawn to their quiet and emotionally distant guide, Pomp Charbonneau. Though the story seems to lose some of its steam as it explores the nuances of Tasmin's torn-between-two-lovers quandary, Molina's pace never slows. Even when he is not breathing life into a character, his role as narrator is played with such earnest urgency that it keeps the momentum high and the listener wanting more. Simultaneous release with the S&S hardcover (Forecasts, Aug. 25, 2003). (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Kirkus Review

Third in the brutal and amusing saga of the dissolute Lord Berrybender and his lusty brood in the great American West (Sin Killer, 2002, etc.). Readers who have not been put off by McMurtry's over-the-top (much scalping, butchering, piercing, dismemberment and spur-of-the-moment sex) take on the unsettled American frontier will be happy to follow the Berrybenders, whose numbers stay roughly constant as births in the bush balance deaths by all sorts of brutalities, as they take a big left turn from the undeveloped northern plains to head for purported comforts of Santa Fe. Berrybender, whose taste for big-game hunting seems unaffected by the loss of numerous limbs and digits, has returned his attentions to his erstwhile mistress, the distinguished cellist Venetia "Vicky" Kennet. Lady Tasmin, Berrybender's beautiful eldest daughter, irritated by the constant disappearances of her free-range frontiersman husband Jim "Sin Killer" Snow, is now focusing her formidable energies on Pomp Charbonneau, diffident son of trapper Toussaint Charbonneau and Sacagawea (yes, that Sacagawea). There's a liaison, but an unsatisfactory one: Pomp, although he doesn't disappear like Jim, is nowhere near as ready to, as Tasmin delicately puts it, rut whenever Tasmin is in the mood. Into the mix float a pair of European balloon-equipped journalists on assignment and their factotum, still bleeding from the midnight loss of an ear to the Ear Taker. Numerous Indians lurk in the neighborhood, but their numbers have been suddenly and devastatingly reduced by smallpox. Indeed, the great Sioux warrior known as the Partezon, whose maraudings nearly meant the end of the saga, correctly sees aviation and the plague as the end of the way for his people and heads for the Black Hills to die. Santa Fe lies on the other side of a seemingly endless desert, but the plucky Brits and their wild American assistants walk on. The Berrybenders may be de trop, but the scenery continues to be worth the trip. Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

A party of Ute warriors placidly negotiates the price of trade goods with a group of mountain men whose encampment they had murderously raided the previous day. A pair of slightly absurd European travelers manages to escape menacing Sioux by inflating a hot-air balloon and flying over their stupefied foes. This is the third installment of the projected four-volume Berrybender saga, which tracks a British family and a motley assortment of comrades as they traipse across the trans-Mississippi West in the 1830s. As in the earlier novels, the focus of the narrative is Tasmin Berrybender and her strange (even to her) attachment to her husband, the rather primitive frontiersmanim Snow. As the Berrybenders move from South Pass toward Santa Fe, McMurtry relates numerous, seriocomic incidents like those above, revealing the West as a place where irony, vanity, and tragedy are inevitably intertwined. Tasmin andim are certainly wonderful literary creations; equally interesting and memorable are McMurtry's finely drawn portrayals of actual historical characters, includingit Carson,im Bridges, Charles Bent, and Pomp Charbonneau. Each plays his part in an exciting, humorous, but often heartbreaking story that unfolds across magnificent, dangerous, and often deadly landscapes. --Jay Freeman Copyright 2003 Booklist

Library Journal Review

The third entry in McMurtry's series (after Sin Killer and The Wandering Hill) continues the saga of the eccentric Berrybenders and other odd characters roaming the American West in the 1830s. In this installment, the protagonists leave the Great Rendezvous of the Mountain Men on the Platte River (in Wyoming and Colorado) and strike out for Santa Fe. Central to this story is the love affair of Tasmin Berrybender (she married frontiersman James Snow in Sin Killer and has already birthed his child) and Pomp Charbonneau, son of Sacajawea. The wilderness continues to kill various party members (chiefly because of their own folly), and McMurtry's deft portraits of both fictional and historical characters keep the book entertaining-this reviewer especially liked the young Kit Carson-but nothing really happens. Basically, the plot is ODTAA (one damned thing after another), and McMurtry's rather detached narration never quite garners enough empathy for any one character. Of course, McMurtry has a large audience, so the book is sure to be in demand, even though it isn't his best. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/03.]-Ken St. Andre, Phoenix P.L. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.