1952 1st edition; Little, Brown and Company publishers, Boston; hardbound in green and chestnut decorative boards; very good condition with unmarked pages; illustrated by the author; inside covers and adjacent end papers have illustrations of storms over prairie and desert.
The Wonderful Country (aka The Wonderful Country, A Novel) is a 1952 Western novel written by Tom Lea. The book is set in Chihuahua and Sonora, Mexico, and Texas and New Mexico in the United States. It was filmed in 1959.
After the financial success of The Brave Bulls, Lea wanted to write a story that he had been thinking about since he was a child, "...write about this borderland and about the people on both sides of the river".
Martin Brady, at age 14, flees to Mexico from Texas after he kills the man who murdered his father. Now, fourteen years later, in 1880s Mexico, he is called Martin Bredi. He is a hired gun for a rich Mexican rancher and Chihuahuan warlord, Cipriano Castro. Brady starts to feel like he would like to return to Texas. Castro send him north to Puerto, Texas, to guard a load of silver ore, with the intention of smuggling arms.
When he gets to Texas he breaks his leg and has to stay put in the town while he heals. He is approached by the head of the Texas Rangers division in Puerto about joining after the Captain confirms his identity and lets Brady know that he will not be prosecuted for killing his father's murderer. He also is enamored by the ranger captain's daughter, Louisa Rucker.
After killing a man who injured a friend, he returns to Mexico and is sent on an impossible errand to deliver a load of gunpowder by General Marco Castro, the brother of Cipriano. The wagon blows up before it is delivered...