Here is a 'feel good' book to read: “The Dog Who Danced” (F WIL) by Susan Wilson, a New York Times best-selling author of “One Good Dog” (we don't have it). Justine Meade's life is filled with loss. She has lost her home, her mother and her son. The only bright spot is Mack, her gray and black Sheltie. When she is ask to return to her childhood home after being gone for twenty years, she is hesitant. When Mack is lost, she is too. Ed and Alice Parmalee are also mourning a loss. After seven years, they are dancing around each other, unable to connect. When they find a little black and gray dog by the side of the road, they take him in. I think you can see where this is going. Everyone needs Mack. But to whom does the little dog who danced belong?
We fell heir to a self-published auto-biography of Frederick Rice and it is so interesting. “My Name is Frederick Rice and I Was Born Here: The Story of a Real Cowboy in Big Bend, Texas” (T B RIC) by Stanley Ewald in cooperation with Jean Ewald and Phyllis Grolla. The writing of this book was done in several steps. They knew that Frederick was a gold-mine of knowledge of the Big Bend and the Park Personnel did too. They interviewed him and taped their conversations; the authors also talked with him and and 'listened in' with their own equipment. Transcription, organization and so-on was done; artwork, photos were compiled and it was finally ready to be sent to the printer. It would be almost impossible to describe the book other than to say that it is a storybook of characters, places and times that took place in Frederick's life as he knew it.
In thinking about Robert Ormsby and his passing (he was always coming into the library and using the computers), it would be impossible to not mention Woodie, his father. Woodie worked for decades at The Comanche Chief running the presses and he might have even set type, I don't know. But I can remember hearing the presses thump-thumping back in the day. I write all that to write about this next book: “Red Blood and Black Ink: Journalism in the Old West” (SW 071.9 DAR) by David Dary. Here are the printers who founded the first papers, arriving in town with a shirttail of type and a secondhand press, setting up shop under trees, in tents, in barns or storefronts, moving on when the town failed, or into larger quarters if it flourished. Using many excerpts from the early papers themselves, Dary shows us the amazing ways the early editors stretched the language, often inventing new words to describe unusual events or to lambaste their targets--and how they sometimes had to defend their right of free speech with fists or guns. We see women working in partnership with their husbands or out on their own, and tramp printers who moved from place to place as need for their services rose and fell. You will find Mark Twain, Bret Harte, Horace Greeley, and William Allen White writing on the death of his young daughter. Here is the Telegraph and Texas Register article that launched the legend of the Alamo, and dozens of tongue-in-cheek, brilliant, or moving reports of national events and local doings, including holdups, train robberies, wars, elections, shouting matches, hyperbolic vegetable-growing contests, weddings, funerals, births, and much, much more. “Red Blood” is more than just a history of journalism, it is an anthem to the importance of a free press, for the importance of the press in settling the West and helping to knit the nation together, making us into the country we are today
Matthew McConaughey has played a bad boy in many of his films and his autobiography reads that way too. Unfiltered, straight from the hip, just like the himself, “Greenlights” (B MCC) is ready to be checked out.
An Oprah's Book Club Book, “American Dirt” (F CUM) by Jeanine Cummins is here also. Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. Even though she knows they’ll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel that has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia’s husband’s tell-all profile of Javier is published, their lives will ever be the same. Forced to flee, Lydia and eight-year-old Luca soon find themselves miles and worlds away from their comfortable middle-class existence. Transformed into migrants, Lydia and Luca ride the trains that make their way north toward the United States. As they join the countless people trying to reach el norte, Lydia soon sees that everyone is running from something. But what exactly are they running to?