Westerns

October 26, 1881

Buntline Special
 
It may not be a date that you had to memorize for your American History class in school, but what happened that day in small mining town of Tombstone in the Arizona Territory has had a very large impact on the national imagination. Almost one-hundred-thirty years later, what is now known as the gunfight at the O. K. Corral is still making news.

Braggin' Rights & the American West

Names like Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett, Jim Bowie, Kit Carson, Calamity Jane, Frank and Jesse James, conjure certain images in the American mind. For us, these people, who actually lived and died and left their marks, have become larger than life.  They are now a part of our American folklore right up there alongside Paul Bunyan, Pecos Bill and Deadwood Dick, and live on as sources of inspiration. 

Where the Wild West Still Lives

The Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo is an event every Texan or “wanna be” Texan should attend at least once. It’s been an annual fixture on the Houston calendar since 1932. People come from all over to participate or partake of all the good things that happen at this event, from the rodeo itself to craft fairs, carnival rides, celebrity entertainers, and of course, good food.  But if you can’t get to the Rodeo, you can at least read some of the great books about rodeo life from our collection. Here are some adult-level, non-fiction titles where you can learn more about the cowboys and cowgirls, rodeo clowns and others we look forward to seeing every year.

The Wacked Out West

With the remake of True Grit currently having a good run in theatres, interest in some of the more comic elements of the wild west are hopefully on the horizon. And there’s more gold in them there hills than you might have been lead to believe too! Some books are classics and some deserve to be better known than they are.

Detecting the West

Have you ever wondered where the term “private eye” came from?  Well, you can thank Mr. Pinkerton for that. Allan Pinkerton that is, of Pinkerton National Detective Agency fame. Mr. Pinkerton, along with his brother, started the first private detective agency in the United States way back in 1850. Pinkerton was a barrel maker by trade and a very successful one at that. Just how he got into the detective business is a story worth knowing. Furthermore, his Agency is still in operation today and many of his methods of detection and crime solving are still being used. The Pinkerton Detective Agency played a role in capturing or eliminating many of the criminals of the 19th century, among them, Jesse James, Butch Cassidy, the Wild Bunch, and others. He was a friend to President Lincoln and foiled an early assignation attempt. He organized a spy ring to infiltrate the Confederate Army and obtain vital wartime information.

Alternative Histories of the West

Alternate history is a genre that blends elements of science fiction, fantasy and history into a 'what if' scenario that explores the implications of a different outcome in a particular historical event. The stories asks questions like, "where would we be if Germany had won the second world war?" Or perhaps, "what would the world be like now if electricity had not been discovered and we relied on steam power for all our needs?" Over the last couple of decades this genre has come into its own gaining new fans and attacting some excellent writers. In the last few years, the Old West has become the subject of focus for some very unusual alternative history stories.

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Rounding Up the West 2010

In spite of what the critics say (that westerns are dead) good stories are still being published every year. Here are some titles published in 2010 worth putting in your saddlebag. You'll find some familiar names as well as some new ones on the list. They run the gamut from straight-up westerns to historical romances to tales of the modern west. This is not a comprehensive selection, but it's a good place to start. You can take what you like and leave the rest.

For more details on any title below, just click on the picture.

Christmas With a Western Flavor

If you love Christmas like most of us do, but prefer a little western flavoring, here are some titles that might help you get into the spirit of the season.

Where the Wild West Still Lives On

They may not riding horses and they may not be fighting indians, but the job of the men and women of the United States Border Patrol seems mighty close that of the peacekeepers of the Old West. From drug dealers and terrorists to illegal immigrants, the Border Patrol gets it all. In Desert Duty: on the line with the U. S. border patrol, we get a candid in-your-face look at what it takes to be a part of this unique team. The authors, Bill Broyles and Mark Haynes call this duty a 'hero job', and once you read what these people have to deal with, you'll understand why.

Love, Love on the Range

I recently discovered and interesting fact: the romance genre is currently outselling all other genres in the fiction market. More specifically. an estimated $1.358 billion in sales in 2010. What does this have to do with westerns? A lot actually. Historical romances are a vital part of the romance realm and many of these are set in the west, both the old west and its modern incarnation. So, if you like your romances with a western flavor or you like your westerns with a dash of romance, check out some of our new titles.

maverick

Audrey and the Maverick / Elaine Levine

A novel of the American West, a proud rancher and a determined young woman are drawn together in the lawless town of Defiance.

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