Released on 08 October 2015.

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The Desert Rose

3.46 based on 986 ratings & 39 reviews on


Bittersweet, funny and touching, The Desert Rose is the story of Harmony, a Las Vegas showgirl. At night she's a lead dancer in a gambling casino; during the day she raises peacocks. She's one of a dying breed of dancers, faced with fewer and fewer jobs and an even bleaker future. Yet she maintains a calm cheerfulness in that arid neon landscape of supermarkets, drive-in wedding chapels, and all-night casinos.

While Harmony's star is fading, her beautiful, cynical daughter Pepper's is on the rise. But Harmony remains wistful and optimistic through it all. She is the unexpected blossom in the wasteland, the tough and tender desert rose.

In the media

Sad and sweet yet rigorously unsentimental. Mr McMurtry has the power to clutch the heart and also somehow to exhilarate
New Yorker
It is quite impossible not to fall in love with Harmony while reading The Desert Rose. . . It is unquestionably one of his best novels . . . The Desert Rose is, in a quite unassuming way, a beautiful little book
The Washington Post Book World
The astounding thing about Harmony . . . is that she really does have a heart of gold, and despite everything, she is wholly believable, oddly moving, even lovable
Publishers Weekly