A TropeCodifier for TheWestern genre, Louis L'Amour (born Louis La Moore, but he changed his name because EverythingSoundsSexierInFrench) wrote eighty-six novels and several more short stories over the course of his life. TheWestern was his prefered genre, though he refered to all his novels as "frontier stories" and he wrote historical fiction set in other eras as well, plus the occasional thriller or fantasy.

Where other adventure writers can talk the talk, L'Amour walked the adventurer walk. At the age of fifteen he left home and began WalkingTheEarth, eventually becoming a merchant seaman and then serving with the United States Army in WorldWarTwo, and at one point or another visited every continent except Antarctica.

[[DownerEnding He died of lung cancer in 1988.]] His autobiography, ''Education of a Traveling Man'' was published posthumously.
!!'''He and his books provide examples of the following tropes:'''

* TheAce: Kilkenny is incredibly fast with a gun, can beat a very good boxer and is very intelligent.
* AirportNovel: His early books, but he grew out of it.
* AlwaysFemale tropes that apply:
** {{My Girl is Not a Slut}} - the heroines, and their boyfriends, regard even dancing in saloon as a {{Fate Worse Than Death}}
** {{Daddys Little Villain}}, and ''how'': see, e.g., ''The Daybreakers'', ''Lando,'' ''The Lonely Men'' and ''Kiowa Trail.'' L'Amour's good girls become grown-up pioneer women and cut the cord with their fathers.
** with a sprinkling of FemmeFatale on occasion, although direct "sexiness" or any mention of sex at all is extremely rare. He will mention that they have "Curves in all the right places"
* AndNowForSomethingCompletelyDifferent: Almost all his books were westerns, but towards the end of his life he branched out to other genres. The most obvious example is ''The Haunted Mesa'', which is a TrappedInAnotherWorld HeroicFantasy. Another is The Walking Drum, which is still historical fiction, but is about the Moorish Empire.
* AntiHero: A great deal of his protagonists fall into this category, sticking a whole lot closer to a code of honor (don't hit women, don't steal cattle, don't shoot a man in the back, etc.) than actual laws. Most would fall into III or IV, but some are II instead. It's rare that the protagonist isn't at least a KnightInSourArmor.
* BeingGoodSucks: In ''Sackett'', Tell thinks this as he has to carry down a {{Mook}}, who had been trying to kill him, but had broken his leg down a mountain, while the mook is on a makeshift stretcher, with a woman, [[UpToEleven in a snowstorm]] with more bad guys chasing them. When they make it down, the mook is [[{{Understatement}} understandably impressed]].
* BlackAndWhiteMorality: For the most part, bad guys are ''very'' bad, and innocent people are very good. However, his protagonists tend to be a lot more morally ambiguous.
* ByronicHero: Some protagonists have this and a few that turn into antagonists, as well.
* DarkIsNotEvil: Kilkenny wears a black hat, black vest and black chaps, but is a hero, albeit a [[ReluctantHero reluctant one]].
* DatingCatwoman: Literally. At one point, L'Amour was engaged to Julie Newmar, [[Series/{{Batman}} the original Catwoman]].
* EasyAmnesia: In ''The Man Called Noon'', the protagonist gets this after being shot in the head (non-fatally, obviously) and falling out a window. All he has is his name (which someone else tells him), freakishly good skill with a gun, and hints that he's supposed to know where a massive hidden treasure is. The book is spent trying to retrace his tracks and figure out who he is, what he was trying to do, and who shot him in the first place... all without letting on to anyone else. [[spoiler:In a bit of a reversal of CriminalAmnesiac, it turns out that Noon was actually a bad guy, although amnesia gave him a fresh start and he turns out to be good.]]
* GenerationalSaga: ''The Sacketts'' series follows the titular clan from medival Ireland to colonial America to of course the Old West. There's also books that follow the Talon and Chantry families (although the Talons eventually marry in to the Sacketts), although those are much shorter series.
* GoldFever: Comes up a time or two in his books, usually among the bad guys.
* GoodOldFisticuffs: There is a brawl between the good guy and either the bad guy or his minion in pretty near every single book. In a bit of a reversal of the portrayal of many "fisticuffs" incidents in books, the protagonists generally win not merely because they know all the dirty tricks (in fact, they often withhold from dirty tricks to show their moral superiority) but because they know real boxing or wrestling techniques. This one is likely a result of L'amour's time spent as a professional boxer.
* TheGunslinger: Most of his protagonists.
* MoodyMount: About half of his heroes' horses.
* NobleSavage: L'Amour loved the Apache nation.
* ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything: The Clinch Mountain Sacketts. Nolan and Logan in particular are supposed to be outlaws and rustlers with posses out after them, but while onstage they never actually steal anybody's cows, horses or money; indeed, they never commit any crime at all, except possibly to stretch self-defense beyond its legal limits.
* PrintLongRunners: ''The Sacketts'' goes on for seventeen books, plus two short stories.
* ProudWarriorRaceGuy: Joe Mack of ''Literature/LastOfTheBreed''. American jet fighter pilot and proud Sioux warrior.
* RatedMForManly: Every novel consists of manly men doing manly things.
* TheVerse: Every book is implied to take place in the same continuity, though most stories are not directly connected to one another.
* ThirstyDesert: One of L'amour's standard plots is to throw the protagonist in the middle of a desert with no water, no horse, and no friendly faces for miles. Like many of his other standard scenarios, he based this on real experiences--in this case, walking out of Death Valley when he was a young man. The Sonoran Desert tends to be the specific desert used.
* WalkingTheEarth: Several protagonists, as well as L'Amour in his youth.
* TheWestern: Pretty well the TropeCodifier, what with the immense popularity and accessibility of his novels.
* ZergRush: L'Amour wrote very, very fast, occasionally writing three full novels in one year. Often, the copyright dates listed inside his books state the month as well as they year they were published, so that collectors will know what order to put them in.