Desert Reckoning: A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit, and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History

North of Los Angeles the studios, the beaches, Rodeo Drive lies a sparsely populated region that comprises fully one half of Los Angeles County Sprawling across 2200 miles, this shadow side of Los Angeles is in the high Mojave Desert Known as the Antelope Valley, it s a terrain of savage dignity, a vast amphitheatre of startling wonders that put on a show as the megaNorth of Los Angeles the studios, the beaches, Rodeo Drive lies a sparsely populated region that comprises fully one half of Los Angeles County Sprawling across 2200 miles, this shadow side of Los Angeles is in the high Mojave Desert Known as the Antelope Valley, it s a terrain of savage dignity, a vast amphitheatre of startling wonders that put on a show as the megalopolis burrows northward into the region s last frontier Ranchers, cowboys, dreamers, dropouts, bikers, hikers, and felons have settled here those who have chosen solitude over the trappings of contemporary life or simply have nowhere else to go But in recent years their lives have been encroached upon by the creeping spread of subdivisions, funded by the once easy money of subprime America McMansions many empty now gradually replaced Joshua trees the desert America s escape hatch began to vanish as it became home to a latter day exodus of pilgrims.It is against the backdrop of these two competing visions of land and space that Donald Kueck a desert hermit who loved animals and hated civilization took his last stand, gunning down beloved deputy sheriff Steven Sorensen when he approached his trailer at high noon on a scorching summer day As the sound of rifle fire echoed across the Mojave, Kueck took off into the desert he knew so well, kicking off the biggest manhunt in modern California history until he was finally killed in a Wagnerian firestorm under a full moon as nuns at a nearby convent watched and prayed.This manhunt was the subject of a widely praised article by Deanne Stillman, first published in Rolling Stone, a finalist for a PEN Center USA journalism award, and included in the anthology Best American Crime Writing 2006 In Desert Reckoning she continues her desert beat and uses Kueck s story as a point of departure to further explore our relationship to place and the wars that are playing out on our homeland In addition, Stillman also delves into the hidden history of Los Angeles County, and traces the paths of two men on a collision course that could only end in the modern Wild West Why did a brilliant, self taught rocket scientist who just wanted to be left alone go off the rails when a cop showed up What role did the California prison system play in this drama What happens to people when the American dream is stripped away And what is it like for the men who are sworn to protect and serve
Desert Reckoning A Town Sheriff a Mojave Hermit and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History North of Los Angeles the studios the beaches Rodeo Drive lies a sparsely populated region that comprises fully one half of Los Angeles County Sprawling across miles this shadow side of Los Ang

  • Title: Desert Reckoning: A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit, and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History
  • Author: Deanne Stillman
  • ISBN: 9781568586083
  • Page: 279
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Desert Reckoning A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit, and the Desert Reckoning A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit, and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History Deanne Stillman on FREE shipping on qualifying offers North of Los Angeles the studios, the beaches, Rodeo Drive lies a sparsely populated region that comprises fully one half of Los Angeles County Sprawling across miles Investing in Water The Daily Reckoning Investing in water can be done through PowerShares ETFs, and will bring in large profits as world levels of potable water decrease causing water stocks go up. The DAY of ATONEMENT The End Time Pilgrim The Day of Atonement and the Last Day A study by Gavin Finley MD EndTimePilgrim The Final Call Painting by Jewish artist Yossi Rosenstein This magnificent picture of the final Day of Reckoning Empire s Day of Reckoning Dissident Voice John R Hall Meanderer, dreamer, mountaineer, restaurateur, military draft refusing felon, wannabe revolutionary, and citizen of Earth, observes the circus of life, The Reckoning History Smithsonian The Reckoning Thirty years ago, an acclaimed series of documentaries introduced the world to an isolated tribe in Papua New Guinea What happened when the cameras left SparkNotes Robinson Crusoe Themes A summary of Themes in Daniel Defoe s Robinson Crusoe Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Robinson Crusoe and what it means Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. Season A season is a division of the year marked by changes in weather, ecology, and amount of daylight.On Earth, seasons result from Earth s orbit around the Sun and Earth s axial tilt relative to the ecliptic plane In temperate and polar regions, the seasons are marked by changes in the intensity of sunlight that reaches the Earth s surface, variations of which may cause animals to undergo The Reckoning Women and Power in the Workplace Dec , As revelations of sexual harassment break, women have been discussing the fallout and how to move forward Here, women from across the working world Paul s Desert Years Mysterious Grace To fully understand Paul s knowledge of the mystery and how he could claim to not have received it from the Twelve, we need to do a little detective work We already know about the miraculous appearance of Christ to Paul on the road to Damascus We know that immediately thereafter he argued many days so successfuly that Jesus was the Christ with the Jews in the synagogues in Damascus Kokoweef Mojave Desert Mojave River Valley Museum Gold Mines Legends and Lies Kokoweef I suppose if there s any true story here it is that this story is truly a complete fabrication If there were what may be trillions of dollars in gold lying at the bottom of an unrediscovered river running from the Great Basin under the Mojave Desert to somewhere near Laguna Beach, California, there would be at least a shred

    1 thought on “Desert Reckoning: A Town Sheriff, a Mojave Hermit, and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History”

    1. The true story of the brutal murder of a cop in the Mohave desert and the massive seven day manhunt. Deanne Stillman is a painstaking researcher and you can't read any of her books without learning a lot about little known CA history. More importantly, she's the sympathetic chronicler of misfits, outcasts, crazies, druggies, loners, and lost souls who drew the short end of the stick a long time ago.

    2. Lots of "he could have been thinking this. Or maybe this. Also this could have happened." Bullshit journalism.

    3. This is a story of a desert hermit and a sheriff and how their lives came together with a tragic outcome. Stillman tells the story of the murder and manhunt but also tells of the history of the area and the lives of the two men. A very interesting story.

    4. Gripping story that takes hold of you almost immediately. I especially like the way author describes Los Angeles scene in the mid 19th century as a city of unbridled crime with a murder rate of one a day, not including Blacks, Indians, and Mexicans because their murders were not considered crimes at the time. Story then leads into the life of squatters and hermits in the Mojave Desert, which is a part of Los Angeles to my astonishment, and the murder of a modern day deputy by one of the desert's [...]

    5. The murder story is compelling on its own, but Desert Reckoning is so much more than a true-crime thriller. Stillman creates a fascinating portrait of the hinterlands surrounding L.A. and their diverse inhabitants. Although the in-depth reporting on seemingly peripheral characters can begin to feel excessive, it’s worth it and adds up to an unbelievably moving and powerful climax. I get chills just thinking about it. Whatever you do, don’t stop before the afterward (notes on writing this boo [...]

    6. I started reading this because I enjoy anything about the desert. So, I did really enjoy the setting here, and it is very well written, but in the future I must remember that the subject matter does actually count for something. And I'm just plain not interested in true crime or real life psycho murderers. Or California. :-/

    7. This is an interesting book. Not great, as sometimes it became really slow to the point of fastidiousness, and the details and side stories went on to almost irrelevancy; but the story itself is interesting and the prose is well-written. And the bright side of all the details of that I learned quite a few new things about the West Mojave Desert. If allowed fractional ratings, it would have been fair to rate this book nearer to 3.5 than 3.

    8. In my rating system, I'd give this two and a half stars. Originally the author wrote this as a piece for 'Rolling Stone' magazine, and I read it at the time. It was an account of the murder of LA County Sheriff Deputy Stephen Sorensen by a reclusive, mentally ill, ex-convict in Lake Los Angeles. I was interested to see how the author could possibly flesh out a magazine article into a full fledged book. It is possibly the most convoluted, rambling book I have ever read. Reminds me of trying to tu [...]

    9. The best thing about this book is the portrait of the Mojave and the people who migrate there for all kinds of reasons. Stillman does a great job of showing the lives of the poor, meth addicts, children from extraordinarily families alongside farmers, ranchers, law enforcement and "Hollywood" people who use the desert for respite from LA. The Sorenson story gets stretched beyond credibility with a lot of "he might have been thinking this" or "maybe he was using tunnels beneath the desert." Not o [...]

    10. The author provided an entertaining profile for both the police officer and the perpetrator in this account of a murder and a manhunt. In addition she provided a very interesting history of the Los Angeles early wild west days and explored the interesting characters who settle in remote desert locations. Although the author did a lot of speculation to fill in parts where facts were absent, I enjoyed her thoughts and speculations. I plan to read at least one more of her books.

    11. Subtitle reads : A Town Sheriff, and Mojave Hermit, and the Biggest Manhunt in Modern California History. Sounds interesting, if it were only about that. Instead there are long pages devoted to desert history and those who are drawn to the desert-individuals and communes. Midway when I'm reading about the development and SWAT teams through the kidnapping and rescue of Patty Hearst, I'm ready to abandon the book. Started skimming ahead to see how the manhunt ends, but ended up not caring.

    12. A fascinating look at a terrible crime in L.A.'s back yard, and gripping account of the Los Angeles Sheriffs Department's search for a brother officer's murderer. This book also contains intriguing accounts of law enforcement's history in L.A. County. Unfortunately this book veers too much into distracting speculation into Donald Kueck's inner monologue to be truly "great."

    13. I've passed the signs memorializing Steven Sorensen on Rt. 138 in the Mojave a bunch of times, but I never knew the guy's story. This is occasionally overblown, and Stillman uses slang in a way that doesn't quite work, but overall these people, the places, and the ways they all intersect make this a page-turner. Definitely a case of real life being way stranger than fiction.

    14. Full of speculation (she even puts words and thoughts into the mouths and minds of desert animals), but so beautifully written. Stillman took me into the Mojave and I feel like I've lived there after reading this book. I can't remember the last time I read nonfiction that was so vivid.

    15. I live in Arizona and this book made me feel hot, dirty and gritty. A good look into people on the fringe and those set out to keep law and order in an orderless place. You'll want to take a shower after this one.

    16. The story is engaging, but the author left me very frustrated at times with her writing style, which made it hard to follow the story. There are a few points where I have no idea how the person ended up where they did because of poor story telling.

    17. This was a chore to get through. Writing was all over the place. Dealt more with the authors musings about the main characters thoughts instead of the facts. Ugh.

    18. Interesting, but not enough to get me past page 60. Not enough patience this week for all of the details, and the book is overdue. I may give it another shot in the future.

    19. There is a lot of interesting information here, as mentioned by other reviewers. I was surprised to read her giving thanks to her editor. I can't believe there was one.

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