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Description: From the author of The Ranch Next Door and Other Stories come six more short stories exploring the joys, heartaches and laughter of life against the backdrop of the Old West. In “Single-Handed,” a gunfighter’s courage comes in doubt when he refuses to explain to his friends the real reason he backed down from a fight. The capable proprietress of the busiest eating-house in town handles a day of disasters large and small in the light-hearted “The Rush at Mattie Arnold’s,” while in “Room Service,” a hotel night clerk finds himself in on odd position after he allows an exhausted traveler to stay in a reserved room. And in the title story, the novella-length “Wanderlust Creek,” a young rancher and his wife struggle to hold onto their land and their dreams in the face of adversity from weather, enemies—and even doubts of each other.
If you like old western movies, Foley is a great writer for you. Her style is very close to those old black-and-white movies that so many of us love. Her stories are devoid of blush-worthy content and are a pleasure to read. If there is one downside I would say it is the use of euphemisms. Most of the time it didn’t bother me except in one story (sorry, I don’t remember which one) where it was a bit excessive.
The Rush at Mattie Arnolds and Wanderlust Creek were my favorite out of the whole series. The Rush was fun simply because of all the characters, each interesting and unique. Wanderlust was a sweet story of a husband and wife, but it was also intriguing and full of mystery.
All of the stories gave me a nostalgic feeling. It is like watching one of your favorite black-and-white movies, or reading a charming old book. It leaves you feeling happy and satisfied. It slows you down from the modern break-neck speed of most stories.
I highly recommend this to those looking for nostalgic reads, those who like old-style westerns, and short stories.