224 pages, 7.7 × 5.1 × 0.99 in
June 24, 2015
Random House Publishing Group
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0553391674
ISBN - 13: 9780553391671
Read from the Book
chapter 1Albert Stark was a coward. Not a quivering, jittery, weak-kneed sort of a coward, but the kind who viewed his cowardice as an act of sensibility: a coward in the name of pragmatism. To Albert, his cowardice functioned as a shield that existed to service the very sensible goal of self-preservation. In the West, brave men got killed. Cowards stayed alive.Death was everywhere on the frontier.“Everything that’s not you wants you dead,” Albert would often say. “Outlaws, Indians, angry gamblers, disgruntled prostitutes, wild animals, the weather, disease—hell, even a trip to the dentist means taking your fucking life in your hands.”One needed only to glance at the front page of any local newspaper to see the truth in such a point of view:INFANT TRAMPLED BY SICKLY MAREHUNDREDS PERISH IN LATE SPRING DAMPSCHOOLMARM FELLED BY TUMBLEWEED ABRASIONMASS HANGING GOES WELLMUD DEATHS REACH 30-YEAR HIGHDUTCH FAMILY CRUSHED BY FALLING CHINAMENWOMAN FOUND GUILTY OF ADULTERY; TONGUE, BREASTS REMOVED50-ACRE BUFFALO HERD DESTROYS TOWNWATER TOWER CONTAMINATED BY BATHING NEGRESSBLACK BEARS FEAST ON KINDERGARTEN CLASSHAIL STORM DRIVES SNAKES INTO LOCAL CHURCH—NO SURVIVORSYes, it seemed to Albert that fear was a very useful thing for a man living in the southern Arizona territory.So on this blistering hot day he was quite content to once again allow cowardice to insulate him from an early demise.He stood at the center of the thoroughfare, gun belt at the ready—or so it appeared.
From the Publisher
From the creator of Family Guy and director of Ted comes a hilarious first novel that reinvents the Western.
Mild-mannered sheep farmer Albert Stark is fed up with the harsh life of the American frontier, where it seems everything and anything can kill you: Duels at high noon. Barroom brawls. Poisonous snakes. Cholera-infected drinking water. Tumbleweed abrasion. Something called “toe-foot.” Even a trip to the outhouse. Yes, there are a million ways to die in the wild, wild West, and Albert plans to avoid them all. Some people think that makes him a coward. Albert calls it common sense. But when his girlfriend dumps him for the most insufferable guy in town, Albert decides to fight back—even though he can’t shoot, ride, or throw a punch. Fortunately, he teams up with a beautiful gunslinger who’s tough enough for the both of them. Unfortunately, she’s married to the biggest, meanest, most jealous badass on the frontier. Turns out Albert has just discovered a million and one ways to die in the West.
About the Author
Seth MacFarlane is an animator, writer, producer, director, actor, and singer. He is the creator of the show Family Guy and co-creator of American Dad!, for which he also voices many of the shows’ various characters. He is the executive producer of the television series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey. MacFarlane’s film Ted is the highest-grossing original R-rated comedy of all time, and he is the co-writer, producer, director, and star of the film A Million Ways to Die in the West. As a singer, MacFarlane has released a Grammy-nominated album of American standards, Music Is Better Than Words. He is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design.