Drumlummon Institute & Riverbend Publishing Reissue First Novel by Montana Novelist Thomas Savage

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Drumlummon Institute and Riverbend Publishing have reissued The Pass, the first novel by renowned Montana author Thomas Savage. The new edition of The Pass features an introduction by O. Alan Weltzien, whose biographical essay on Savage appeared in the Winter 2008 edition of Montana The Magazine of Western History.

Drumlummon Institute (http://www.drumlummon.org) and Riverbend Publishing have reissued The Pass, the first novel by renowned Montana author Thomas Savage. The new edition of The Pass features an introduction by O. Alan Weltzien, whose biographical essay on Savage appeared in the Winter 2008 edition of Montana The Magazine of Western History.

Best known for his acclaimed novels The Power of the Dog and The Sheep Queen, Savage (1915-2003) was an extraordinary chronicler of the American West. The Pass, published by Doubleday in 1944, tells the compelling, often tragic story of the founding of a family ranch in the high country along the Montana-Idaho border, where Savage spent his youth. The book, set near Savage's hometown of Dillon, Montana, takes place around 1910.

In the novel, the railroad is on its way, bringing all that civilization has to offer to a remote valley, changing it forever. New rancher Jess Bentley struggles against the elements, against fate, and against all odds to run a successful outfit that will be suitable for his beloved new bride, Beth.

A reviewer for Library Journal wrote, "I consider Thomas Savage's (The Pass) a minor classic." Annie Proulx, in her afterword to The Power of the Dog, said of The Pass, "The novel is studded with brilliant portraits that already display Savage's masterly ability to show the inner lives of characters, especially women. . . . The language and thinking of the ranch people in The Pass [are] strikingly vivid. . . . A sense of great longing and sympathy for the western landscape colors this novel."

The Pass is available at bookstores or by calling Drumlummon Institute, 406-461-7494, or Riverbend Publishing, 1-866-787-2363. The 336-page softcover book is available for $12.95.

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RICK NEWBY
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