Title: Jackass Flats (Riding Cowboy Flats: Book One)
Author: Julia Talbot
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 100 Pages
Category: Contemporary, Western
At a Glance: I was thoroughly entertained by this short story.
Reviewed By: Maryann
Blurb: Can a traveling military man and a set-in-his-ways cowboy find a way to make things work?
Tate feels like the best part of life has probably passed him by, which is why the thirtysomething cowboy hits the bars every night. When he meets Dave, a young soldier from a nearby Army base, though, Tate figures things might be looking up. He and Dave get off to a rocky start, but Tate soon finds that he and the kid have enough in common to make things interesting.
Dave isn’t really into the whole don’t ask, don’t tell thing, and he doesn’t bother to hide his relationship with Tate from his friends. Once he realizes he should have been more careful, it might be too late. But Dave is willing to fight for Tate, even if it means taking on the military.
First Edition published by Torquere Press, 2008.
Review: Tate feels like he’s just too old. He owes taxes, and drinking seems to be his focus to forget his troubles. His sister is concerned about him. Not only does she worry about his finances and the ranch, but she wants to protect Tate from being hurt. One thing Tate isn’t ready to do is give up his ranch in New Mexico. He stumbles out of Lulu’s one night, and stumbles into Dave Lopes, a soldier in the Army. Dave gets the “old-timer”, Tate, safely home, but not without a lot of fussing at each other.
Dave goes to dinner one night and as he’s thinking about Tate, he’s surprised to hear a familiar voice. Tate invites Dave to have dinner with him, and they hit it off pretty good. Dave finds he has an interest in Tate, and he really wants to get to know him, but Tate’s not ready to have a physical relationship—especially not with a military man who’s sure to leave—but they agree to start by dating.
Ram, who is supposed to be Dave’s friend, starts trouble for Dave out of jealousy. In fact, he confronts Tate one evening when he’s out having dinner with his friend Herschel, and the two old-timers find themselves in a brawl with the Army.
Jackass Flats is my first time reading Julia Talbot’s work, and I have to say I was thoroughly entertained by this short story. She writes cowboys in a style that is similar to another author that I like. This is a nicely written love story, with a little drama and a cowboy fist fight. It does have a somewhat serious side too, addressing the issues and repercussions of “don’t-ask-don’t-tell”. I really like Dave and Tate; they’re great characters and they made a really fun and sweet couple. For me this was a light read that I didn’t have to think too hard about. And, Herschel is getting his own story, Just A Cowboy, which I’m looking forward to, and more from this author.
You can buy Jackass Flats here: