Frank B. Linderman knew the frontier types who appear in these robust stories and sketches. A trapper in Montana during his youth, he stayed on as a publisher, politician, and businessman, beginning to write in middle age. The Montana Stories of Frank B. Linderman, originally published in 1920, still crackles with the freshness of arctic wind, the pungency of aged whiskey, the impact of a whip.
"In the Name of Friendship" sets up a deadly bluff with ironic results. "Was Chet Smalley Honest?" shows a good deed in danger of punishment. "Jake Hoover’s Pig" describes a hungry man’s sentimental attachment to a fat porker. "Cranks" is a frontier precursor of the Odd Couple. "What Followed a Sermon" testifies to the sobering effect of preaching in a saloon. These and other stories are filled with rustlers and hustlers, Mounties and tenderfeet, Crows and Blackfeet, mountain men, prospectors, bartenders, lawyers, townspeople, and assorted dogs, cats, and horses.