Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Balaam's Gotta Lotta Gumption ~ I Found a Book That's a Jewel..

I am a voracious reader, but this 2004 novel by Fort Worth's own Mike Nichols totally escaped me at the time.  That may have been the year I was running from myself or more likely I had my nose in the bag of worms that is the Chisholm Trail story trying to make some sense out of the printed mutterings of aging but arrogant old cowboys. Anyway, I entirely missed it until a friend of mine loaned me her copy and said "you gotta read this".  Thank goodness for friends...

Click for Review

This is a true Texas book. Mike has written a funny, sad and smart book about the Texas a lot of us know. A Texas that still exists in more places than you'd think. Having lived in many small towns including Ralls & Floydada out on the Caprock, I know all these people. I are one. They are the people that show up with me at JR's Cafe in Saginaw at 6 or 7 AM every morning for breakfast. Not all good people, but real people.

Mike's story of a few months in the life of the one-blinking-light town of Willoughby down near Waco, is a gem.  He has successfully written the hardest kind of fiction to create. It was named the "Funniest Texas Book of 2004", but it's a lot more than that.  Gumption has a lightness of spirit coupled with genuine humor and heart that never gets gooey. He successfully walks the fine line that keeps everything together.

Ten minutes after I opened the book, I was hooked.  Click on the review link for the story, but better than that get online or start looking for it in your bookstore.

See you at JR's..

1 comment:

  1. Pete:
    Thanks so much for your kind words about ol' Balaam. He and I are glad you enjoyed your visit to Willoughby.