Cult of Glory: The Bold and Brutal History of the Texas Rangers is now on the shelves. My bookstore gave me an advanced reader copy back in February, and I will be popping for the HC for the library — which should give you an indication of its quality. As I noted in the March trapline, it’s revisionist history of the best kind — the kind that gazes clear and hard on the real-deal history, neither polishing up old triumphalist mythology nor engaging in cheap debunkery.
Reviews are contextualizing it in the moment, of course, with the current focus on the history of police treatment of people of color.
A new novel set in the turn-of-the-20th-Century Southwest hits on June 16. Debut novel from an Austin writer and it’s got respect from writers I respect. All Things Left Wild. Here’s the caper:
After a botched robbery, sixteen-year-old Caleb Bentley is on the run with his mean-spirited older brother across the American Southwest at the turn of the 20th century. Caleb’s moral compass and inner courage will be tested as they travel the harsh terrain and encounter those who have carved out a life there, for good or for ill.
Wealthy and bookish Randall Dawson, out of place in this rugged and violent country, is begrudgingly chasing after the Bentley brothers. With little sense of how to survive, much less how to take his revenge, Randall meets Charlotte, a woman experienced in the deadly ways of life in the West. Together they navigate the murky values of vigilante justice.
Here’s what the great David Joy had to say:
“James Wade has delivered a McCarthy-esque odyssey with an Elmore Leonard ear for dialogue. All Things Left Wild moves like a coyote across this cracked-earth landscape — relentlessly paced and ambitiously hungry.”
And Corey Ryan Forrester of The Liberal Redneck Manifesto:
“As a southerner, the very first sentence wove such a familiar and comforting tapestry, and it never let up. Wade presents rich, flawed, human characters who I feel I know personally even though I’m neither of their time or place. As someone who loves a terrific Western, this book sure did scratch my itch. I hope this book finds its way to Taylor Sheridan because that’s a collaboration I need Hollywood to hop on.”
Taylor Sheridan. His cowboy soap opera Yellowstone kicks off Season 3 on Sunday, June 21. Father’s Day.
Going to make the most out of the Summer Solstice/Father’s Day Weekend. Planning to trek down to Crater Lake. Spectacular nature on the longest day; music; a big steak; Western mayhem — my kinda weekend.
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