Roy was Judge Roy Bean, the infamous, notorious real-life jurist whose life has been the source of biographies, novels, plays, and films. Lillie was Lillie Langtry, the celebrated “Jersey Lily” of the British stage. They never met, but they wrote letters. From very different backgrounds, living vastly different lives, separated by an ocean and most of a continent, these two unforgettable people share something unique in the “lost letters” of this novel.
For many years Bean, the cantankerous, self-styled arbiter of rough frontier justice, wrote fan letters to the beautiful actress across the sea; occasionally, she wrote back. He even renamed the town in which he lived Langtry in her honor. And they would have met, if Bean had not died shortly before Lillie, after years of this strange but poignant correspondence, finally kept her promise to visit her distant admirer. In this story of letters lost and at long last found, Loren D. Estleman, with all the nuance and narrative skill that has won him multiple Spur Awards, brings to life an untold chapter of transatlantic love that is as tender as it is unique.
“Clever. Entertaining. Imaginative. Humorous. Estleman does it again.”
—True West Magazine
“This book, about Victorian England and the Old West, will captivate and entertain readers as he brings to life these so different characters as they bond across miles of land and ocean in a near perfect romance.” —San Angelo Standard Times
“The Estleman hallmark has always been the quality of the prose. After 60 or so books, that remains fresh, flavorful and worth the price.”—Kirkus Reviews
“I was introduced to Loren D. Estleman’s work by the late Elmer Kelton, who still ranks near the top of my list of the best Texana writers. With Roy and Lillie, Estleman has placed himself pretty high on that same list.”—Dr. Jerry Lincecum, North Texas E-News
Loren D. Estleman