If there is one thing that makes you not only want to stick with this book but keep reading avidly. It has to be because of the main character John Grady Cole who is wise well beyond his sixteen years, and able to understand horses, women and men.
As the second hundred pages starts to unravel just as you might have expected Blevins, the stranger who caused them so much trouble before they settled down on the ranch working for a living, manages to reappear and destroy their happiness.
Until Blevins is reintroduced to them in a prison cell they are getting on well proving their worth to the rich Mexican ranch owner with John Grady’s ability to break horses. He goes through all of the wild horses that have been kept on the ranch and then goes off into the mountains to get some more with his friend Lacey Rawlins.
But love bites and John falls for the ranch owner’s daughter and they start an illicit relationship against the wishes of her aunt and presumably her father. So when the Mexican police come to take Rawlins and Grady away the ranch owner does not speak out for them and in fact seems to have welcomed the chance to get the American away from his daughter, who he has resorted to sending to France.
After being dragged to prison they meet Blevins who is in there for shooting three men in revenge for taking his horse and his gun. Grady and Rawlins are dragged off and accused of being accomplices in the crime but Grady takes none of it too seriously. But he returns to the cell knowing, just as he is able to read horses, that the police will kill Blevins.
It turns out to be a right prediction and on the way to prison proper the truck stops in a remote area and Blevins is taken away and pistol shots are heard and he does not return. The two friends are alone again and head off to take numerous beatings at the prison before being offered a chance to escape but for a cost.