Archive for the ‘Gilman, George G’ Category

George G. Gilman’s Edge – A New Kind of Western Hero

October 26, 2008

Jamie Hedges counted six riders and there should have been only one.


That was is the opening sentence of Edge: The Loner, in which George G. Gilman unleashed his psychopathic western anti-hero Edge onto the world.



ggg - loner




Obviously inspired by the violence, the heat, the dust and the bloodshed that were the iconic and instantly recognizable features of Sergio Leone’s spaghetti westerns – films that attracted millions of viewers to the cinema during the late sixties and early seventies – George G. Gilman (a pen-name for Terry Harknett) eschewed the puritanical and moralistic conventions of the generic and standardized cowboy stories that were the staple of the western genre and relocated them in brand-new violent territory. Before long the name Edge would become synonymous with the essential reading of any dedicated or ‘real’ fan of Western fiction.

Edge was billed ‘a new kind of western hero’. Later on in the series, he was billed ‘a man alone’. Gilman deliberately emphasized Edge’s loner status: the half-breed psychopath, the western outsider, the amoral existentialist. Initially the Edge novels were novels of pursuit, later they became a series of one-off Edge adventures, with each novel containing an extremely violent dénouement.






Here is a list of the ‘complete’ Edge series:

Edge #1: The Loner (1972)

Edge #2: Ten Thousand Dollars, American (1972)

Edge #3: Apache Death (1972)

Edge #4: Killer’s Breed (1972)

Edge #5: Blood On Silver (1973)

Edge #6: The Blue, The Grey And The Red (1973)

Edge #7: California Killing (1973)

Edge #8: Seven Out of Hell (1973)

Edge #9: Bloody Summer (1974)

Edge #10: Vengeance is Black (1974)

Edge #11: Sioux Uprising (1974)

Edge #12: The Biggest Bounty (1974)

Edge #13: A Town Called Hate (1975)

Edge #14: The Big Gold (1975)

Edge #15: Blood Run (1975)

Edge #16: The Final Shot (1975)

Edge #17: Vengeance Valley (1976)

Edge #18: Ten Tombstones to Texas (1976)

Edge #19: Ashes and Dust (1976)

Edge #20: Sullivan’s Law (1976)

Edge #21: Rhapsody in Red (1976)

Edge #22: Slaughter Road (1977)

Edge #23: Echoes of War (1977)

Edge #24: The Day Democracy Died (1978)

Edge #25: Violence Trail (1978)

Edge #26: Savage Dawn (1978)

Edge #27: Death Drive (1978)

Edge #28: Eve of Evil (1978)

Edge #29: The Living, the Dying and the Dead (1979)

Edge #30: Waiting for a Train (1979)

Edge #31: The Guilty Ones (1979)

Edge #32: The Frightened Gun (1979)

Edge #33: The Hated (1980)

Edge #34: A Ride in the Sun (1980)

Edge #35: Death Deal (1980)

Edge #36: Town on Trial (1981)

Edge #37: Vengeance at Ventura (1981)

Edge #38: Massacre Mission (1981)

Edge #39: The Prisoners (1982)

Edge #40: Montana Melodrama (1982)

Edge #41: The Killing Claim (1982)

Edge #42: Bloody Sunrise (1983)

Edge #43: Arapaho Revenge (1983)

Edge #44: The Blind Side (1984)

Edge #45: House on the Range (1984)

Edge #46: The Godforsaken (1984)

Edge #47: The Moving Cage (1984)

Edge #48: School for Slaughter (1985)

Edge #49: Revenge Ride (1985)

Edge #50: Shadow of the Gallows (1985)

Edge #51: A Time for Killing (1986)

Edge #52: Brutal Border (1986)

Edge #53: Hitting Paydirt (1986)

Edge #54: Backshot (1987)

Edge #55: Uneasy Riders (1987)

Edge #56: Doom Town, London (1987)

Edge #57: Dying is Forever (1987)

Edge #58: The Desperadoes (1988)

Edge #59: Terror Town (1988)

Edge #60: The Breed Woman (1989)

Edge #61: The Rifle (1989)

The Edge adventures finally stopped arriving on bookstore shelves in 1989. That was it. To all intents and purposes, the series, although it hadn’t been officially concluded, was over. For many years, there would be no more Edge novels.

What’s left from those heady days of very violent, but very well-written westerns is a  61-book series of NEL paperbacks, 3 Edge/Steele novels, and 6 e-books that continue Edge’s adventures after Edge #61: The Rifle.

ggg etr 1

The series of six new books is titled Edge: The Return. The titles are:

The Quiet Gun (Edge: The Return, #1)

The Deputy (Edge: The Return, #2)

The Outrage (Edge: The Return, #3)

Killing Time in Eternity (Edge: The Return, #4)

Return to Massacre Mesa (Edge: The Return, #5)

Name on the Bullet (Edge: The Return, #6)


George G. Gilman (Terry Harknett)

I enjoyed reading the Edge series of books very much and I was sorry to see the series come to an untimely (and unexplained) end. Each novel was very fast-paced, and all of them were written in a style that mixed violence, sex, black humour and the western landscape in a very compelling way.

It would, of course, be wonderful if George G. Gilman were to write a final Edge adventure, tying up all the loose ends and providing a fitting conclusion to his stories and a fitting end to his charismatic anti-hero.

Note: If you are interested in reading the further adventures of Edge in 6 e-books written by George G. Gilman, click on the link below:

George G. Gilman’s Edge – A New Kind of Western Hero

Copyright © R J Dent (2009 & 2016)