In his newest book, Devils River, Patrick Dearen traces the 400-year history of the notorious river from the time of the first Spanish explorers to the modernization of southwestern Texas and the coming of the railroad. He vividly retells stories of Indian encounters, train robberies, and other horrific events that prove just how the name “Devils River” was coined. With his inimitable style, the author weaves together a variety of themes--military events, including the Civil War and stories about the Texas Rangers; the development of the first mail lines; and the introduction of cattle and sheep raising--into a comprehensive account of the violence and bloodshed surrounding the Devils River. The nature of the river’s history is such that very few anecdotes have happy endings, but Devils River contains stories of triumphs as well as disasters. Although this is an excellent account for historians studying the west, it is also very accessible to others with little or no background in early western history.
The author of nine nonfiction books and nine novels, Patrick Dearen is a recognized authority on the lower Pecos River country. He grew up in Sterling City, Texas, and earned a bachelor of journalism from The University of Texas at Austin.