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Publisher's Summary

The grand saga of an American ranching family continues in The Last Ranch, the final, mesmerizing book of New York Times best seller Michael McGarrity's gripping and richly authentic American West trilogy.

When Matthew Kerney returns to his ranch in the beautiful San Andres Mountains after serving in Sicily during World War II, he must not only fight to recover physically and emotionally from a devastating war injury, but he must also battle attempts by the US Army to seize control of his land for expanded weapons testing.

Forced off public grazing lands, banned from gathering his cattle on high mountain pastures, and confronted by military police guarding a high security army post on the northern reaches of the range, Matt finds himself at the center of a heavy-handed government land-grab. The reasons behind this surge of secrecy and control become clear when Matt witnesses the boiling, blinding explosion of the first atom bomb at Trinity Site.

As he struggles with an aging, stove-up father no longer able to carry a heavy load at the ranch, an ex-convict intent on killing him, and a failing relationship with a woman he dearly loves, Matt must draw upon all his mental and physical resources to keep his world-and the people in it - from collapsing.

Following the New York Times best-selling Hard Country and its sequel Backlands, The Last Ranch enthralls with the deeply rich, sometimes heartbreaking Kerney family saga as it steps brilliantly into the mid-20th-century world of the new American West.

©2016 Michael McGarrity (P)2016 Recorded Books

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Paula
  • Overland Park, KS USA
  • 05-23-16

So Good! Read to Start the Kevin Kearney Series!

Wouldn't you know -- I read this McGarrity book about the Kearneys last . . . and in truth it should be read before starting any of the modern-day westerns featuring Kevin Kearney. However, it worked for me as the "after" read so you really can't go wrong. This book provides a concise, engaging tale of the Kearney family, their ranching forefathers and the plethora of man-made and natural events that affected their ability to ranch, find happiness and success. It is a great story made even better by George Guidall's narration. McGarrity's characters are people you'd like to meet and although everyone doesn't find true happiness all the time, it is a realistic, believable story of how ranchers in our western states fare with the interventions of government and Mother Nature. A very enjoyable listen!

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Back to the future

Kevin is on the route through college, more love interests,the Vietnam Naum era, politics, Matt separates from the university,and starts his pony business,...Kevin has a pregnant girlfriend that he knows nothing about, and he is now fighting a war 1/2 the world away....stay tuned for the next book

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Disappointing Ending after Riveting story

The ending was very unsatisfying for such a marvelous tale. Far too many unanswered
questions about Kevin. I felt like I had fallen off a cliff.

McGarrity is a grand writer and he could still prepare for another book by ending better.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • mark
  • NEWPORT, NC, United States
  • 05-27-16

What a series!

This entire series is excellent. McGarrity is one hell of a writer. The detail of the locations and the surroundings is riveting. This series actually caused me to take several trips to N.M. and see many of the areas that the stories take place in.
George Guidall does his usual excellent job. He makes the stories come alive.
I would highly recommend this series. Start with Hard Country, Backlands, The Last Ranch and then do the Kevin K. police books. I did it a little different but I think the above order would be the best.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Glad McGarrity Switched

For those of you who are long-time fans, you will recall the Kevin K. series of mystery/crime novels. When the author first switched over to the history of the family I was dismayed...
but I decided to read the first one even though I am NOT a fan of westerns.
I am so glad that I did, because what followed was an engaging saga of the Kerney family beginning, I believe, at the end of the 19th century. The Last Ranch brings us close to the time when the mystery/crime series begins, except not quite... because Kerney does not yet have his limp from a rodeo injury....
So I hope there's more to come. Excellent book, excellent series.
Guidall is the narrator for this, just as he was for Tony Hillerman's books. Guidall is a real pro and does his usual superb job.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A Great Series

If you like the Southwest, or cowboy stories, or family history, or Gerge Guidall, or just great writing and performance this series is a must! Beautifully developed, believable progression of characters, makes you see AND feel the beauty of southern New Mexico. As always Mr. Guidall does a masterful narration. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Outstanding Voice Performance & Story

Guidall is terrific. I heard him first on Longmire. He has a perfect old west and new west voice. All 3 in this series are great stories. I’m still a sucker for McGarrity’s descriptions if NM

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  • kk
  • 05-19-18

Good but disappointing

I immensely enjoyed the first two books of the trilogy and consider them the best Westerns I've ever listened to, better than Lonesome Dove, but the storyline in the last half of The Last Ranch felt forced. However if you've listened to the first two books, no question you need to finish out the trilogy...it's still perfectly narrated and an enjoyable listen, but unfortunately it's not at the same level as the others.

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End of an era

As usual guidall pulls you into the story like an old friend - didn't want it to end

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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worth a read

I'm a big fan of McGarrity's Kevin Kearney mystery series, as good as Sandford, Connelly, and anyone else except that he doesn't write them any more. This is the final in the Kearney family history series, a good read, well narrated, but not as good as the mystery series.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful