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Ralph Compton stood six-foot-eight without his boots. His first novel in the Trail Drive series, The Goodnight Trail, was a finalist for the Western Writers of America Medicine Pipe Bearer Award for best debut novel. He was also the author of the Sundown Rider series and the Border Empire series. A native of St. Clair County, Alabama, Compton worked as a musician, a radio announcer, a songwriter, and a newspaper columnist before turning to writing westerns. He died in Nashville, Tennessee, in 1998.
"Compton may very well turn out to be the greatest Western writer of them all...Very seldom in literature have the legends of the Old West been so vividly painted." --Robert Dyer, The Tombstone Epitaph "Compton has hit the bull's eye." --The Birmingham News