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My partner Mike and I both refer to this as "my cowboy book" ("Honey, have you seen my cowboy book?" "I think you left your cowboy book in the kitchen.").
It's no secret that I have little experience with Westerns. I watched Bonanza as a kid and may have seen a few minutes of the movie Shane on TV once. The only Western book I've ever read is the recent The Sisters Brothers, by Patrick Dewitt, but that had more in common with No Country For Old Men than it did with Gunsmoke, at least in tone. But I knew that Western novels were the sort of books that friends' grandfathers would collect and read by the dozens, so I figured many of them must have a "cozy fiction" feel to them that I could relate to.
So when I saw that there was a giveaway for a copy of the paperback edition of Stan Lynde's The Bodacious Kid, I thought, "Why not?" Mike teased me that I might have a new favourite genre and started saying things like "howdy" and "I reckon." But honestly, he might be right!
Read more after the jump, plus a link to the Stan Lynde fan club!
The Bodacious Kid IS cozy. It follows a young cowboy named Merlin Fanshaw who can't seem to go fifty yards without having a new person tell him what to do. He accidentally ends up working for two different "lawmen" (one or both of whom may be crooked) and an outlaw with the charmingly improbable name of Original George Starkweather. Add that to the fact that Merlin blushes every time a woman so much as looks at him and the whole story is just very endearing, wild west violence and all.
And Mike's been waiting for me to finish so he can read it too!
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book when I joined The Stan Lynde Fan Club, an offer I heard about on TotallyFreeStuff.com. I was in no way obligated to write a favourable review, or any review at all, so the opinions expressed here are entirely my own. Although I did get a very nice handwritten note from Stan Lynde's wife asking me, "If you feel so inclined, I hope you will consider a review on Amazon.com."
Bonus: Just because I did find the handwritten note from Lynda Lynde so gosh-darn charming, here's a little extra shout-out to them. You can visit Stan Lynde's website here: http://stanlynde.net/