Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Lit Spotlight: Cowboys not Mermaids

used with permission under the creative commons license from ElizaPeyton
Did you guys see this article in USA Today? While we agree that there certainly are a lot of mermaid books coming out in YA, we'd like to throw out our pick for the next big thing in YA Lit: Cowboys!

Tough, capable, independent, these guys are pretty hard-to-come-by in most of the U.S. these days, which just makes them even more interesting. If you're sick of vamps, fallen angels or musicians, you might want to take a look at books that feature a guy who knows how to wrangle any cattle you've got hanging around.

Don't believe us? Check out these new titles with a distinctly western flair. 

Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore
Amy and Phin Goodnight are sisters in town to watch over their aunt's farm for a few weeks, but when a ghostly presence starts kicking up trouble on the ranch next door- they may have to harness the Goodnight family magic to set things right.
Cowboy in Question: Ben McCulloch- Since his father's death, Ben has been back home minding his family's large ranch next to Mrs. Goodnight's place. The last thing he needs is the stress of the town's people getting scared because the Goodnights' are blabbing about some ghost on his property.

Paradise by Jill S. Alexander (see our full review here)
 Both Texas Gothic and this one are set in Texas, Paradise has a little more time to explore every day life there- including parades, rodeos and Paisley Tillery's very strict mother who will lose her mind if she ever found out about Paisley's drumming ambitions.
Cowboy in Question: Gabe (better known as Paradise, cause that's where he's from)- singer and accordion player extraordinaire. He might be Paisley's band's ticket to winning the local battle of the bands, but he seems to care about the success of only one thing- himself.  Sure he can stay on a bull at the rodeo and make the girls scream when he grabs their hands from the stage, but how is Paisley supposed to deal with this guy who's ego is bigger than his hat?

Love Story by Jennifer Echols  (see a longer review here)
Erin is starting a new life at college in New York City, but can't seem to leave the farm-life behind.
Cowboy in Question: Hunter the stable-hand from her grandmother's farm who is now set to inherit her family's money and land since Erin wouldn't agree to her grandmother's plans for her future. Hunter knows about horses, but he also turns out to have a knack for creative writing, a talent that quickly makes Erin wonder what he's writing between the lines.

For more Cowboys in Question, check out Where I Belong by Gwendolyn Heasley; The Sweetheart of Prosper County by Jill Alexander or Another Kind of Cowboy by Susan Juby.

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