Lone Star: A History of Texas and the Texans

Off the Bookshelf

Lone Star

A History of Texas and the Texans

by T.R. Fehrenbach

Da Capo Press, 784 pp., $22 (paper)

Bookshelves are sagging this spring with hefty historical fiction set in Texas. This month an updated edition of T.R. Fehrenbach's definitive general history, Lone Star, weighs in at more than 700 pages. First published in 1968, Lone Star is to Texas what Shelby Foote's Civil War is to the War Between the States: an entertaining and thought-provoking work of historical scholarship. Readers who enjoyed the original edition will find little new in this updated edition. Fehrenbach writes in his foreword that "Texas, through the last half of the twentieth century, has suffered little 'history.' There has been enormous growth and a splendid record of economic development, which are not the same thing." The enduring legends and myths of the state, Fehrenbach says, were created a century ago -- the "nineteenth-century Texas from the Alamo to trail drives to Spindletop" that "will fascinate Texans in future centuries." Still, Lone Star should be required reading for new generations of native and transplanted Texans.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Book Reviews
<i>Presidio</i> by Randy Kennedy
Presidio by Randy Kennedy
For his debut novel, Kennedy creates a road story that portrays the harsh West Texas terrain beautifully and fills it with sympathetic characters.

Jay Trachtenberg, Sept. 14, 2018

Hunting the Golden State Killer in <i>I'll Be Gone in the Dark</i>
Hunting the Golden State Killer in I'll Be Gone in the Dark
How Michelle McNamara tracked a killer before her untimely death

Jonelle Seitz, July 20, 2018


Lone Star: A History of Texas and the Texans, T.R. Fehrenbach

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle