Kenneth Rendell's fascination with the American West dates back to childhood in the late 1940's, when movies and radio - and, eventually, television - abounded with Western stories.
"My vision of the West at that young age was highly romanticized, " he says. "but that image didn't last long."
He'd soon read enough history to realize that the West of Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, and Hopalong Cassidy was a fantasy world with no connection to reality except the scenery.
"It wasn't this fantasy world that captured and held my attention," says the award-winning author. "It was the beauty of the landscape and, most important, the dream of freedom and opportunity that inspired me with a sense of adventure not unlike the spirit of the first pioneers. I never longed to be a cowboy or a gunfighter, but I did yearn to escape from my neighborhood to the wide-open spaces of the West, where a man could do whatever he could do. "
In The Great American West:Pursuing the American Dream, Rendell serves up a combination of the engaging text and dramatic imagery that made his book World War II:Saving the Reality such a popular seller. Readers will see dozens of Western artifacts and relics, letters from famous outlaws, old newspaper clippings, historical maps and posters, and other rarities make the American West come alive - a once-in-a-lifetime experience to be shared with the whole family.