HE DALTON GANG by Harold Preece


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Out of the middle of next week's movies comes a grand book about grand larceny, borne on blood and bullet-riddled, under the outlaw moon. ""Marshal, puncture those men with lead!"" Corpses are piled like cordwood in this definitive recital of the Dalton boys' deeds, until the book's bloody climax which author Preece blissfully spreads over three leaking chapters of unstanched gore. It's all pretty rousing, especially if you hate railroads. In case you don't know, the Dalton boys numbered three, from a brood of fifteen, and they specialized in trains and banks because, as Willie Sutton says; ""that's where the money is."" There's no particular story: the brothers just run around robbing banks and sticking carbines into the ribs of aghast engineers. They'd make a great TV team, one dumb, one a dandy and one with a stick-tight girl. Mr. Preece apparently deserves commendation for loving footwork, but really more for keeping everything dancing. No grand descriptions of nature; nothing about what they ate; plenty of bullets; enormous efforts at larceny, and no loot! The world's greatest bandits and they hardly turn a penny. The climax, tho, when the brothers decide to return home and rob both hometown banks at once, stinks handsomely with death. Even so, one misses detail, about haircuts, clothes, love of weapons, nicknames,--the truly intimate gossip.

Pub Date: April 29th, 1963
Publisher: astings House