Free Study Guide for Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry|
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LONESOME DOVE FREE BOOKNOTES SUMMARY
On the day the Hat Creek Cattle Company is set to ride north, Jake awakens in Lorie’s room to the sight of her sitting on the foot of the bed and looking out the window at the sunrise. He is drowsy, but soon remembers the importance of the day and awakens immediately. It occurs to him that staying in the luxury of the bed makes more sense, but he has never been able to disappoint a woman, especially one as unique as Lorena.
Lorena gives him money to buy her a horse, and Jake finds it amusing to think that the money Gus paid her for sex will now be used to buy both of them good horses. Lorena is unperturbed by his observations and just looks out the window as if she’s already left Lonesome Dove.
After Jake leaves, there’s a knock at Lorena’s door and when she opens it,
there stands Xavier, the saloon owner. He’s in tears, because she is leaving.
He asks her to marry him, saying that Jake is not true and will leave
her somewhere rather than take her to San Francisco. He insists that he
will be much nicer to her than Jake and will buy her anything she wants.
He tells her they could go to Galveston and take a boat to San Francisco
and this makes Lorena suspicious of Jake, since he had never told her
they could get there by boat. Xavier begins pulling money out of his pocket
and Lorena thinks to herself that life is a never-ending cycle: some man
will always think he can have her if he just has the right amount of money.
However, she insists that she’s going with Jake no matter how much money
Xavier has. Finally, Xavier asks to sleep with her one last time. He lays
the huge amount of money on the dresser, and Lorena gives in one last
time. When he leaves, she notes that he has the same look in his eyes
that her father had when died years before. After Xavier leaves, Lorena
hides all the money he gave her. To her, it is just one more secret she
has from Jake.
This chapter is a significant commentary on the position of women in western American society after the Civil War. Lorena is an object to them all, easily bought for the right amount of money. Some think they are in love with her, but in reality, it’s all about infatuation and physical attraction. None of them really know her, and none really care to know her. She is a contrast to the hard work and drabness of their lives and losing her is all about losing the only thing worth looking forward to. They lie when it suits them and leave her when she’s no longer interesting. Some men have even beaten her when they felt like asserting their power. So she keeps secrets and whenever possible uses them to her own advantage. This is how she survives as one of the few attractive women among all the men of Lonesome Dove.
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Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on Lonesome Dove".
. 09 May 2017