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#100: The Luck of Roaring Camp - Bret Harte

The story takes place in a small struggling mining town located in the foothills of the California mountains at the time of the gold rush. The camp is suffering from a long string of bad luck. With only one woman in their midst, it seems as though the miners have no future. However, the tide turns when a small boy is born. "Thomas Luck" is the first newborn the camp has seen in ages; things are looking up. The miners become cheerful, foliage begins to grow, there's talk of building a hotel to attract outsiders. Unfortunately, the hope is wiped out by the sudden death of Luck in a flood. Water brought gold to the gulches, giving miners their first glimmer of hope. And water takes away what seems their last glimmer—Luck.

  • Print Length: 26 pages
  • ASIN: B004TS7C6E

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AUTHOR BIO:
Bret Harte (1836-1902) was born in New York but moved to California at a young age, following the death of his father and his mother's remarriage. He is best known for his short stories of the West, but he spent many years as a typesetter, school teacher, editor, and journalist, working for such well known publications as the "Overland Monthly" in San Francisco and "The Atlantic Monthly". As a child he was an avid reader, and took a strong liking to Charles Dickens. Many of Harte's stories and characters later served as models for thousands of Western novels and films. This collection contains the most popular stories of Bret Harte, such as "The Luck of Roaring Camp," "The Outcasts of Poker Flat," "M'liss," and "An Ingénue of the Sierras." The title story of this book was almost not published because it contained a prostitute character and some profanity, however Harte was adamant in its publication, and as a result, he played a significant part in further realism in American literature.


REVIEW:
What an ending!!
Sometimes I felt there was a lot going on at once, and had to read it all very slowly to get the gist of it. Not sure why the men thought of getting a woman for, 'The Luck', but other than that part the story drew me in deep. I wish the baby had grown into one of them though, but then the story would have been less poetic.
I'm not sure everyone will appreciate, or even grasp this story. It might be a bit too cleverly written for everyone's taste.

3/5


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