Review: K Company

K Company

For the first in literal years, I deliberately sought out and read a western, Robert Broomall’s K Company. A story of army life on a hardscrabble post on the Kansas frontier and the inevitable conflict with Native Americans, it combines two genres that have never really gelled with me: The western and the historical war novel. How is it? Ok.

The old west is, of course, a setting more than anything else. Westerns can range from the cheapest cheap thrillers to the most staid literary epics. This book is more on the ‘realistic’ end, and I like that it’s vastly more evenhanded about the native/settler conflict than I feared it would be. Still, if I had to sum up the book in one sentence, it’d be “good, but not good enough”.

The writing is good, but not good enough for me to really get into it. The action is good, but not good enough for me to get into it. The characters-you get the idea. Still, I would recommend it if you do like westerns and/or more grounded historical war novels.

The Genre I Haven’t Read

I’ve read a lot of books of many, many different types, as this blog makes clear. However, there’s one genre I simply have demonstrated no interest in for a long time.

Westerns.

Now, this isn’t a dislike of them, just a personal taste. And as always, personal tastes can change. But my disinterest in westerns has been remarkably consistent for a remarkably long time. While I had to have read at least one western, I can’t remember the title of any off the top of my head. I can remember the title of one that I bought a long time ago, Whiskey River, but also that I didn’t actually read it. This may be the only genre where I’ve seen more movies than read books in. Because I have seen (and enjoyed) the classic Westerns The Magnificent Seven and The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

As for why, even I’m a little baffled. But I think it’s because they’re ultimately historical fiction (which isn’t really my favorite) and in a specific historical period that also isn’t exactly the one I’m most interested in.