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Book Title

The Next Rodeo

New and Selected Essays
Author 1
William Kittredge
I've learned to think of myself as having had the luck to grow up at the tail end of a way of existing in which people lived in everyday proximity to animals on territory they knew more precisely than the patterns in the palms of their hands.

William Kittredge's relationship to the spare, often unforgiving, western landscape is fraught with contradictions. Having grown up on a cattle ranch in Oregon, he has an intimate connection to the vast landscape that was once vital to his family's trade. He has also witnessed, over many decades, the depletion of the West's natural resources due to overuse. These luminous essays move from the personal to the political effortlessly. With grace and integrity, Kittredge directly confronts the myths that lie at the heart of the Western experience: male freedom and female domesticity, the wild and the tame, self-interest and the love of the land.

On the heels of Kittredge's very first novel, The Willow Field, published to wide critical acclaim in 2006, we are pleased to offer the very best of his nonfiction writings, which has given him the reputation, in the words of Annie Dillard, as "one of our finest writers."

"Reading this richly detailed book is like listening to Hank Williams. Its twangy, melancholic strains cut to the bone."—Booklist, starred, for Owning It All

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"You may never again see the American West in quite the same way if you take the time to view it through the eyes of William Kittredge."—The Seattle Times

About the Author

William  Kittredge
Credit: Howard Skaggs
William Kittredge grew up on a cattle ranch in southeastern Oregon and farmed there until he was 33, after which he studied at the University of Iowa. He taught Creative Writing at the University of Montana for 29 years and retired as Regents Professor of English and Creative Writing. His many previous books include Next Rodeo, The Nature of Generosity and the Best Short Stories of William Kittredge. He died in December 2020.
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  • “Of the few writers with the requisite passion and talent to write sublimely about the West these days, Kittredge (along with James D. Houston, Barry Lopez, Terry Tempest Williams, and Gretel Erhlich) takes us traveling to places some of which now exist only in his prose, to that border where the Old West and New West meet.”Alan Cheuse, NPR
  • “In these essays, we get Kittredge at our doorstep.”Susan Salter Reynolds, Los Angeles Times
  • “Kittredge is a first rate Western writer who knows both the “Old West” and the “New West”—and he has a rare gift of description that will please lovers of any West.”—Deseret News
  • “Kittredge’s work, both fiction and nonfiction, is so vital to our understanding of the American West that every scrap of it needs to be collected.”—Bill Ott, Booklist
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