Ron Hansen’s engrossing novel of the violent life and criminal exploits of the Dalton gang, as remembered by its last surviving member
From his home in Los Angeles, an aging Emmett Dalton reminisces about his glory days in America’s Wild West. Now sixty-five years old, and a Hollywood fixture, he makes a comfortable living selling stories of his earlier exploits to movie studios. But years before, he rode with his two brothers—charming, handsome, charismatic Bob, and the cold-eyed killer Grat, so wild and unpredictable that even his own family was afraid of him—committing brazen acts of robbery, bootlegging, and murder. As the last surviving member of the infamous Dalton gang, it’s Emmett’s responsibility to keep their legend alive. He has resolved to tell the full truth about the fabled career of the three criminal brothers and Eugenia Moore, the former schoolmarm who was an indispensable partner in their crimes, even if that truth turns out to be a darker, more painful, and less heroic picture than Hollywood’s moguls would make it out to be. The critically acclaimed debut novel by bestselling author Ron Hansen, Desperadoes is a masterwork of historical fiction that brings a fabled era of American outlaws and violence to breathtaking life.