Part of what I liked was seeing the old West from Ferber's point of view. I particularly liked this passage:
He licked and stamped the envelope, rose, and took from the table beside him his broad leather belt with its pair of holstered six-shooters, evidently temporarily laid aside for comfort while writing. This he now strapped quickly about his waist with the same unconcern that another man would use in slipping into his coat. He merely was donning conventional street attire for the well-dressed man of the locality. He picked up his sheaf of envelopes and stepped out. In three minutes he was back, and affably ready to talk terms with them. It was, perhaps, this simple and sinister act, more than anything she had hitherto witnessed, that impressed Sabra with the utter lawlessness of this new land to which her husband had brought her.I like how it calls out how easily monstrous habits can so easily become the norm for society. Is it really okay for ads for "Trojan Studded Bareskin" condoms to be on in the middle of the day during family programming? Is this normal now?
In any case, the novel moves fast, and it is hard not to be charmed by Yancey Cravat's boldness, fast-talking, adventure seeking, and literary aplomb. I could see the ending coming from a mile away. And it was so corny, I was about to lose some respect for Edna Ferber. And then, with the magic that only she can do, she had me in tears with the last two lines. Bravo again, Edna! I now cannot wait to read her next one. I wonder who her inheritors are, if there are any, today?