The Last Cowboys

Narrated by: John Pruden
Length: 8 hrs and 8 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (140 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter's gripping portrait of one western family struggling to hold on to age-old American ways.

New York Times reporter and best-selling author John Branch takes listeners to the magnificent red soil and rocky arroyos of southern Utah, where the Wright family of Smith Mesa have for generations raised cattle and world-champion saddle-bronc riders - some call them the most successful rodeo family in history.

Filled with vivid scenes of cattle ranching and the high drama of rodeo, The Last Cowboys follows three generations of Wrights through the seasons as they are battered by drought, the falling price of beef, battles over land-use and federal regulation, and rodeo's ever-present risks of serious injury.

This is an epic but intimate story of real-life cowboys squeezed by social change in the 21st century, their soiled boots planted firmly in the past while they optimistically build a future.

©2018 John Branch (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Well written, could have been a great performance

For such a well written story, the reading performance wasn’t my favorite. Felt like he was just plowing through, and after having heard the author on NPR it left me wishing he had read his book instead.

2 people found this helpful

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Great Family and Cowboy story!

Great story, I think it is for everyone that believes in family and the cowboy way of life. The Wright family doesn't sugar coat it. They are real people with real life problems. And yes a bunch of freaks when it comes to Saddle broncs!

1 person found this helpful

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Great book.

I know these folks personally. I thank you for your respect and professionalism in this. It is a great book and recommend it to anybody who has any intrest in rodeo and cowboys.

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Excellent portrait of a ranching family

Having grown up with ranching & rodeo, family & land use, I thought the author did an excellent job of portraying the Wright family without either romanticizing or condescending to them. He also did a good job of showing how difficult it is maintain land and lifestyle through generations.

One minor blooper in the narration when he said they vaccinated the calves for "black plague" rather than "blackleg". I checked the written version and the author had it right so the error was one the part of the narrator.

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Explicits

Be aware that there is the use of the "F" word in here a couple times or maybe more I don't know I stopped listening.

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Great

I loved this book, I listen to it very quickly because I loved it so much. My little brother and his boys also rodeo, and they know some of the Wright family, so this was really fun for me to listen to.

The only mistake I noticed was that he thinks Luke chapter 2 is in the Book of Mormon and it is not, Luke chapter 2 is in the Bible it’s in the New Testament.

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Very good book!!!

Really enjoyed listening to this book! Definitely would recommend it as one of my favorites!

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EXCELLENT

LOVE this book! Great listen and truly great story. Loved learning the history of the iconic bronc riding family the Wrights!

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Exceptional reading/listening experience

This is my favorite audiobook. The story is captivating. The narrator has the perfect voice. Such a wonderfully American story about an interesting family living a unique lifestyle in the American west. I can’t brag on this book enough. It is truly perfect.

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Wonderful window into lives of contemporary cowboy

Great overview of cowboy life, gave me background I was looking for prior to trip to rodeo and ranch in Wyoming. Highly recommended.