Review: Breckenridge Elkins

Breckenridge Elkins is a “tall tale” character, written by Robert E. Howard.  That’s the same Robert E. Howard that wrote the Conan the Barbarian stories, although these are quite different.  Breckinridge is the biggest man in Bear Creek, and is one of those people that things just happen to… Howard wrote these stories in a mountain man dialect, and with a deadpan sense of humor which appeals to me.

I ran across these stories via LibriVox, a source of free audio books.  There are two volumes available: Bear Creek Collection, Vol. 1 and Bear Creek Collection, Vol. 2, both read by RK Wilcox.  He does a wonderful job reading these stories, flowing through the written dialect easily, and changing voices to match each character.  I can easily imagine him “jest sittin’ on the porch and tellin’ tales” about Breck Elkins as if they were his own, he is so comfortable with the material.

I’ve been listening to these stories while walking the dog, with a little car listening too.  The stories vary in length from about 30 to about 45 minutes at “normal” speed.   There’s almost 13 hours of tale tellin’ here, and very enjoyable hours they are.   Highly recommended.