Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Remembering Zane Grey: Master of the Western Novel


The Wild West was a period in American History that has the greatest number of legends built around it. It was a period just after the end of the civil war and that was the time legends like Billy the Kid and Wyatt Earp started doing the rounds.This is considered a romantic period in American history and one that is avidly followed around the world including the Middle East. Even in India Zane Grey is immensely popular

Zane Grey

Most of these legends and the Wild West in particular were glorified by one man. He was Zane Grey and now we can look back in hind sight and say that there was none like him. Zane Grey spanned an era when the Wild West was in vogue. It was a period of bandits, rustlers and Indians on one Side and the law men like the Texas Rangers and others on the other side.
Zane grey deserves credit for making this period come alive in his books. He lived from 1872 -1939 and this period saw him turn out a prodigious number of novels on the Wild West. Zane grey wrote about things which everybody wants to fantasize.

Zane Grey and his Books and Characters

In his books Zane Grey created characters and gun slingers who were strong and righteous and the women beautiful and full of compassion. He presented an idealized image of the rugged old west.
Zane grey wrote more than 90 books which itself must be a feat. In all his books sold over 40 million copies and thus he became the first writer millionaire. From 1917-26, Zane Grey was in the best seller list ten times. And that meant sales of over 100000books.

Zane Grey and Hollywood

Zane Grey also had a tremendous impact on the film world. Many of his books were the inspiration of a legion of Hollywood films. He also started his own production company, which he later sold. Two of his most famous books‘the lone star ranger ‘ and ‘king of the royal mounted ‘ inspired a whole lot of serials and took Zane grey to the apex of popularity.
Tens of Hollywood films were made based on the novels of Zane Grey . I think he was the writer who had the most filmed books by Hollywood..

Last Word

Zane grey was certainly a writer who was a cut above the ordinary. The popularity of his books can be gauged from the fact that even after his death almost 30 of hisbooks were published posthumously.
The significance of Zane Grey lies in the fact that he brought the Wild West alive to his readers. It was a great gift that he spanned this momentous period.Hollywood also and a lot many stars will forever be indebted to Zane Grey who was a master writer whose contributions in the literary field will last a long time.
All Photos from Wiki free commons except the books which are by m