I have a purely subjective hatred for Leonardo Decrapio. Can't stand him. Favorite movie with him in it is The Departed because of the elevator scene. Titanic was also pretty good because douchecanoes don't float. Rose knew she had enough room on that door but why share space with the likes of Depoopio. I hate Leonardo like some people hate going to the dentist. Like people in Hell hate heaters. Like Star Wars fans hate Jar Jar Binks.
So when I saw the trailer for the film adaptation of this novel, I became super excited. Deshitio gets mauled by a fucking bear??? Oh hell the fuck yeah! Sign my fat ass up! Of course the book nerd in me, the geeky purest, wouldn't allow me to watch such a movie without reading the source material first. And I gotta say, I did not hate it. Didn't love it either. But again, my dislikes are subjective.
By reading this book, you will learn how to make a fire, how to fight wolves, how to betray people and leave them to die, how to punch people until they're ugly ala Fight Club, how to feel guilty, how to explode a cannon, how to get facial scars, how to be cool with the cards life deals you, how not to play poker, and last but not least, how to fall asleep while reading.
The action in this book is superb. It's everything else I had a problem with. As long as people were getting killed, torn into kibble, or taking on the local flora and fauna, I was cool. It's when Punke digs into his research that I drifted off. You can tell dude studied his ass off. Had this been a quiz on the 1800s, man, he would've gotten a B+. Sadly, this is a novel, not the SATs. It was the oddest feeling being on the edge of my seat one moment and snoring the next. It's like chasing cocaine with heroin. Your body doesn't know how to react.
Knowing what I know of the plot now, I believe the movie has been perfectly cast. Tom Hardy is going to nail Fitzpatrick... or Fitzgerald... or whatever dude's name is. I'm sure it will be a fantastic film and the first Dejizzio movie I actually enjoy from beginning to end. At least when I watch the movie I won't have to read whole chapters about some fucker trying to locate the old-west equivalent of a Big Mac.
In summation: If you're a research whore, this should pay your bills. If you like your fiction fictionalized, you might become bored at times. The action is exquisite, though. Gore for days.
Final Judgment: Needs more cowbell.