Book Review: A Walk in Connection

A Walk in Connection

By Tracy Ane Brooks

Balboa Press: Paper, 220 pp, $16.99

Reviewed by Annie Dawid

One of Mission: Wolf’s directors, Tracy Ane Brooks, has written a memoir of her decades-long journey into connection with animals, specifically wolves and horses. Her book is intended for those readers who believe animals are sentient, intelligent creatures like ourselves, worthy of knowing, loving, celebrating and mourning.

Much of her focus here centers on the intuitive abilities innate to human beings. “I believe that any human with the desire and intent to connect, in loving and positive ways, with troubled canines or horses was born with the tools to do so already within them.”

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Book Review: Full Tilt Boogie

Full Tilt Boogie: A journey into autism, fatherhood, and an epic test of man and beast.

By Hal Walter

224 pages, Out There Publishing; 1st edition (2014)
ISBN: 978-0967714813
Reviewed by Martha Quillen

Whether Hal Walter is about to get pulled over a cliff by his unpredictable Jenny, Full Tilt Boogie, or he and his wife are sitting on the edge of their seats at a grade-school performance hoping their son Harrison won’t fall prey to a sudden emotional outburst, this book is an incredibly candid account of a man trying to do his best.

When the book opens, Hal is a champion pack burro racer who is getting older and a little bit slower. He yearns for one last win, and a friend assures him that Boogie is his best bet. She’s beautiful, graceful and uncommonly fast – a runner born.

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Book Review

The Cowboy Takes a Wife
By Davalynn Spencer
ISBN-13: 9780373486977
Publisher: Love Inspired, 2014

Reviewed by Elliot Jackson

Ah, the “historical” romance novel! Casually dismissed by the non-cognoscenti as “bodice-rippers,” the classic formula is this: take one beautiful and spirited (also penniless, orphaned or in some way materially disadvantaged) heroine, and one handsome, studly, often lordly and always rich hero; add instant mutual attraction/antagonism between same; set in an “exotic” historical setting of some sort or other; mix well with other ingredients including villainous Other men and scheming Other women, and sex – lots of unashamed, lusty and usually premarital sex. Ah, the good old days. 

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Book Review


By Barbara K. Richardson
Torrey House Press, 2012
ISBN: 978-937226-04-6
$15.95, 348pp.

Reviewed by Eduardo Rey Brummel

This second novel by Barbara K. Richardson was finalist for this year’s Willa Literary Award in Historical Fiction. It begins in 1859, when a Mormon Brother finds six-year-old Clair Martin, orphaned and abandoned in Honeyville, Utah, and brings her with him to Brigham City. There the Mormon Elders find a place for her, assisting an aging widow. From birth, Clair’s face has borne a distinguishing mark, “the purple-red stain that covers my left cheek and flutes down my neck like I’ve been scalded.”

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Coming soon: A New Ed Quillen Anthology

A daughter compiles a collection of her late father’s columns.

Popular Denver Post columnist Ed Quillen died suddenly last June, leaving behind a lifetime of writing, including thousands of weekly columns.

Abby Quillen, his daughter, is compiling his later columns into a sequel to his 1998 collection, Deep in the Heart of the Rockies. The new anthology will be entitled Deeper into the Heart of the Rockies, and the release date is scheduled for November 1. The book will include 120 of Quillen’s best columns published between 1999 and 2012.

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Book Review

La Sociedad: Guardians of Hispanic Culture Along the Rio Grande
By José A. Rivera
University of New Mexico Press, 2010
ISBN 978-0 8263-4894-4
Photographs by Daniel Salazar et al.

Reviewed by Virginia McConnell Simmons

In 1900, led by Celedonia Mondragón of Antonito, his Hispanic neighbors organized the Sociedad Protección Mútua de Trabajadores Unidos, which soon had 65 chapters called concilios throughout rural southern Colorado, northern New Mexico, and a few places in Utah. These buildings once bore, or still bear in many cases, the fading initials SPMDTU for brevity’s sake, as the facades often tended to be small.

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Book Review

Wild Burro Tales: Thirty Years of Haulin’ Ass

By Hal Walter
Out There Publishing, 2010

Reviewed by Teresa Cutler-Broyles

“Hang on. Don’t let go.”

So Hal Walter tells us in Wild Burro Tales, his wonderful new collection that takes us on a wild ride through the exciting and overlooked sport of pack-burro racing, and his life with the creatures that give it all meaning.

At first glance the book appears to be, simply, about burros and the relatively obscure and unusual sport of running marathon distances partnered with an animal not known for its cooperative nature. Indeed, the stories – 19 in all, punctuated with brief asides that take on a life of their own in their ability to hit hard – are ostensibly about Walter’s experiences with pack-burro racing and the people and animals who make the sport what it is. For anyone interested in knowing the facts – where pack-burro racing originated, why it continues today, what sorts of skills and hardships are encompassed – Wild Burro Tales certainly delivers. And Walter touches on Wild West legend as well as hard 20th century reality as he opens that world for us.

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Book Review: The Book of John

The Book of John, By Kate Niles

O-Books, paperback, 225 pages
ISBN-10: 1846942918
ISBN-13: 978-1846942914

Reviewed by Annie Dawid

Surely we are all autistic at some level, in some place in our hearts? Living in this country, with its glamour and malls, its stream of cars, its TV and competition, is like battering yourself against a sea wall, time and again. How do you not retreat into a world of your own in the face of that?

John Gregory Wayne Thompson, eponymous hero of Kate Niles’s second novel, ponders thus in the first chapter of this exquisitely-rendered journey of one man’s soul, from the deserts of Southwest Colorado to the cold beaches of Neah Bay in the Pacific Northwest, tracking his life and loves like an archeologist mapping our collective history.

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An adventure in book publishing

By Hal Walter

My little jab at the Literary Industrial Complex – Wild Burro Tales – Thirty Years of Haulin’ Ass – is nearly reality. Soon the book will be available in local retail establishments and on

This collection of stories had its origins in my adventures on the Western Pack-Burro Racing circuit. But this experience grew to include a fascination with equus asinus, my exploration of using these animals as backcountry packers and saddle donkeys, and as therapeutic riding animals for my son Harrison. While the book is full of adventures, the process of putting this volume together is another story worth telling.

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Book Review – Historic Photos of Colorado Mining

Text and Captions by Ed Rains
2009 – Turner Publishing Company

Reviewed by Mike Rosso

Having spent several years as a photo restorist in Durango, working with museums in Durango, Cortez, Dolores and Silverton, I was eager to obtain a copy of Historic Photos of Colorado Mining when it was offered for review.

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Books to match our mountains

Suggestions from the Tattered Cover

Books – December 2002 – Colorado Central Magazine

Denver’s Tattered Cover Book Store asked twelve Colorado authors, educators, and land agency workers: What books would you suggest to someone who wants to know more about the heritage, challenges, and wonders of life in the Mountain West?

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