Congratulations to Trails and Tales of Sanderson, Texas: The Saga Continues Book 2 written by Cleo W. Robinson, Jr. for receiving a RECOMMENDED rating from the US Review of Books.
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“That old boy had more stories than Texas has cows.”
This book is an adult Western romance of the cowboy, his horse, and a lifestyle mostly past. It features ranchers and wild cats living near the Rio Grande, love between men and women who were brave enough to leave their former culture behind, and friendships that last a lifetime. This more-or-less connected set of short stories takes place just north of the Mexican border in a Texas town called Sanderson. The tales are so enchanting that those who have never been there may wish to visit as soon as possible after reading this book. Sanderson is a town that crosses Southern hospitality with friendliness, even in the days when Jim Crow laws were still in effect, and when a few illegals snuck across the river for employment or robbery.
The main characters who appear in the introduction to urge the author to continue telling this saga are diverse: Lou, the female café manager; Will Wilson, family member and owner of the R Bar R ranch; three bachelor friends—Birthday, Punch, and Blacky—who have stories left to be told. Readers of the first book will know that the main action takes place in a local café in the town. In this continuing saga, new people arrive in town—people who Lou and her friend, Birthday, expected were dead. There will be land sold, a house built, and another wedding before the 1950s tales are all told.
In the back story of Will Wilson’s great-granddaddy, readers get acquainted with the family patriarch, young Jed, on the last day of the Civil War. Before those wearing the enlisted gray were stripped of guns and horses, Jed quickly fled with the horse and loot of a Yankee general who was robbing the Confederate dead. Twenty-two chapters cover the ride and the adventures Jed meets up with from Virginia back home to Texas. Through this fictional ride we learn more about the Wild West. There was an undertaker who plied his trade between towns. There were Comanche raiding parties and looters who stole property and goods from those families whose men went off to war. This was a time when gender did not matter. Like the American women who joined the workforce during World War II, brave young women during the Civil War defended their homeland and resisted evil. Some older women learned to intimidate the males of the families, promoting the use of violence to gain advantage. There was plenty of evil to overcome before Jed could get back to his family and beloved Sara.
Robinson has chosen to write his tales from multiple viewpoints accompanied with narration by the author and/or several of his main characters. The author clearly admires the cowboy lifestyle, past and present. He is not shy at the telling of bloody battles and the use of weapons to defeat the lawless. Nor does he apologize for creating a sexy orgy or sentimental moments along the way. This author is clearly not opposed to stretching the truth, either. With Robinson’s seemingly endless supply of straight-talking stories and Paul-Bunyan-style characters, he draws adult readers―male and female―inside thirty captivating chapters. A stop by the Turner Hotel Café becomes a must, where every reader will quickly get to make some real, true fictional friends.
RECOMMENDED by the US Review