Title : Doc

Author : Mary Doria Russell

Context : The story of the novel, Doc is set during the late 1800s, in the United States. Dr. John Henry Holliday, sick, lonely, scared and young, born to a Southern gentleman life, comes to the Texas frontier thinking that the sunshine and dry air of the West will help in restoring back his health. The witty, moving and authentic novel by Maria Doria Russell redefines the two towering figures of the Western America and brings back an extraordinary cast of historical characters, back to life, including Kate, his unforgettable companion.

Synopsis : On arrival Dr. John Henry Holliday finds that the Texas frontier is facing an economic crash wrecking the nations’ dream. With hardly any alternatives open to him, he indulges in professional gambling. He does get a few job prospects but soon he finds himself gambling with Maria Katarina Harony, his partner who is a classically educated and unstable and sensitive whore from Hungary.

The couple is in on the lookout for high-stakes poker and accordingly hit the saloons of Dodge City. Here, Doc Holliday meets Wyatt Earp, a fearless lawman after which an unlikely friendship develops between them. Later a gunfight takes place at the O.K. Corral which links their names in the frontier mythology forever, in America. One of the men desired this sort of disrepute or fame.

Cattle trade is at its peak in Texas in the year 1878. Young Irish hookers and drunk-adolescent cowboys jam up the saloon-filled cow town at Dodge City, Kansas. Violence here is routine and random but the charred body of Johnnie Sanders, a mixed-blood boy is found. Wyatt Earp, the part-time policeman is shocked with the death. The 26 year old frail dentist, Doc Holliday has newly opened his office at 24 Dodge House. Strangely, the matter becomes important to him.

Other works by the Author :

1996 – The Sparrow

1998 – Children of God

2006 – A Thread of Grace

2009 – Dreamers of the Day

2016 – Epitaph : A Novel of the O.K. Corral