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All the Pretty Horses

John Grady Cole, the last in a long line of west Texas ranchers, is, at sixteen, poised on the sorrowful, painful edge of manhood. When he realizes the only life he has ever known is disappearing into the past and that cowboys are as doomed as the Comanche who came before them, he leaves on a dangerous and harrowing journey into the beautiful and utterly foreign world that is Mexico. In the guise of a classic Western, All the Pretty Horses is at its heart a lyrical and elegiac coming-of-age story about love, friendship, and loyalty that will leave John Grady, and the reader, changed forever. When his mother decides to sell the cattle ranch he has grown up working, John Grady Cole and his friend Lacey Rawlins set out on horseback for Mexico, a land free of the fences and highways that have begun to invade west Texas, a land where the boys are not able to read the look in a man's eye. As they approach the Rio Grande, they are joined by the youthful and mysterious Jimmy Blevins, whose fine horse, hot-blooded temper, and talent with a pistol are as certain an omen of trouble as the desolate and forbidding landscape stretching out before them. In a violent and freakish thunderstorm, Blevins loses all his worldly possessions; and the foolhardy attempt to recover them soon brands the boys as horse thieves. On the run, they split up, with John Grady and Rawlins finding refuge on a hacienda where few questions are asked and a talent for breaking horses is still a source of honor, and where they fall into a routine as familiar to them as the shape of their saddles. At night, John Grady rides the patron's prized sire through the mountains beyond the hacienda in the company of Alejandra, the patron's beautiful daughter. But in a land as bound by honor and reputation as this is, the white-hot love between John Grady and this girl is as dangerous as anything they will face. When soldiers arrive to take John Grady and Rawlins away, the boys know it ...

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