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Entries tagged with “rancher”.



I am a big fan of Kathleen Ball’s writing—I believe I have read all of her books. Cinder’s Bride was a change of genre for her. It is a historical western romance novel set in post civil war Texas.

I will confess that at first I had a bit of difficulty relating to the shift in her writing, but there was a great deal about the book that I liked. 

I found Shannon McMurphy’s character to be believable, and I could sympathize with her insecurities and understand where she came from. She had made the choice to risk travelling to an area that she knew nothing about, to become a wife to man she didn’t know, in hope of having a better life than she would have had before.  That took guts.  When she realized that the man who sent for her had not been honest about himself or his intentions, she refused to marry him. That took guts. To punish her for refusing him, he left his mark on her… one that she would see every time she looked in the mirror. He thought she would bow to him, but she didn’t.

Cinder was a kind man and in good conscience he could not leave Shannon at John Hardy’s mercy. Since it seemed the only answer, he married her and took her to his ranch.  But he is a man who is dealing with his own demons, and they are reflected in how he communicates with Shannon. 

Thank God for Cookie, who became Shannon’s staunch ally.

Life in those times was very different than today—I think the author did a good job of portraying how it was. And no matter what decade people live in they are still human beings and have all the emotions that come with being a person.  Their culture and past experiences will affect how they react, but they still fear, love, hate, get angry, make mistakes (yes I realise that’s not an emotion), feel insecure, worry…and yes they have sex.

There were a few editing errors. But overall I liked the book and recommend it to anyone who likes historical western romances.

This book can be purchased on Amazon by clicking here.


Title:             Louisiana Man                                                                 

Author:        Lloyd Antypowich

Genre:         Fiction – Western



Completed on:


Review Rating: 5 stars! 

5star-flat-hrReviewed By Maria Beltran for Readers’ Favorite

In Louisiana Man, Lloyd Antypowich introduces us to a young wandering character by the name of Tom Menzer, who is all set out to explore the frontier. He is nineteen, and has quite a passion for becoming a cowboy. He saddles up, leaves his hometown of Pontchartrain, and heads out west to Texas where he finds work. Life pans out well for the young man. With hard work and patience, he begins to build a better life, later putting together his own ranch and befriending a neighboring tribe of Native Americans with whom he wishes to stop the killing between the natives and the white men. Trouble begins, however, when he becomes the target of a rich rancher, but things start to look up after Ross and the other cowboys help him out. He travels to Omaha and befriends the natives, and his life’s journey continues. Will he finally find the life he dreams of?


Readers will enjoy traveling and experiencing the homesteading life that Tom Menzer aims to achieve in Louisiana Man. His adventures in the frontier are wonderful page turners. The author, Lloyd Antypowich, wastes nothing in painting his life, the people, and the landscape on the written page. His portrayal of the rifts and friendships between pioneers and the natives is spot-on and realistic, definitely not one made out of cardboard characters. It’s a great western book – one that vividly features all the classic elements of the western genre and is highly entertaining. The Louisiana Man brings us back to a time when Indians and cowboys inhabited this part of the world and a man needed a lot of courage and vision to pursue his dreams. Tom Menzer is a certified cowboy whose life is full of action and adventure. It was a great pleasure to get to know him.





Completed on: 06/09/2015

Review Rating: 5 stars! 

5star-flat-hrReviewed By Jack Magnus for Readers’ Favorite


Louisiana Man is a historical western novel written by Lloyd Antypowich. Tom Menzer left his family’s farm in Louisiana when he was nineteen years old. He wanted to be a cowboy and decided to head to Texas, a part of the country known for cowboys and large ranches. His skills with horses soon attracted the attention of the boss at the Bar X Ranch. His name was Ross O’Riley, and he quickly became attached to the young man and treated him as a son. Ross helped Tom set up his first homestead, with the aid of Mex and Patchy, Tom’s friends who also worked at the Bar X. Tom learned about Indians and the stresses between them and the encroaching settlers from Ross. Ross counseled that respect would go a long way with the tribes, and Tom took that wisdom to heart and would rely upon it his whole life. Tom ended up leaving Texas after a wealthy rancher’s sons assaulted Tom, Mex and Patchy, leaving one son wounded and the other dead. Jones, the aggrieved father, would be hounding Tom wherever he went in his quest for vengeance.

Lloyd Antypowich’s historical western novel, Louisiana Man, brings the west to life with a focus on the impact of the western expansion on the American Indian tribes and their way of life. Tom Menzer’s life and successes are intimately wound up with the Indians he encounters, and his diplomatic skills and caring nature make him a credible and attractive character. I especially enjoyed Tom’s work with the wild horses he finds and works with in the open lands. The author sets his story in a succession of locations, which gave me a grand perspective to compare and contrast life in Texas, North Dakota and Alberta during the latter part of the nineteenth century. His coverage of the plight of the American Indian is comprehensive and compassionately related. Louisiana Man is a rich and evocative work whose main character is resilient, resourceful and kind. It’s highly recommended.

Note from Reviewer to Author

A most impressive work….




Completed on: 06/15/2015

Review Rating:5 stars!

Reviewed By Roy T. James for Readers’ Favorite

5star-flat-hrLouisiana Man by Lloyd Antypowich begins with Tom Menzer from Louisiana heading for Texas, with a strong desire to become a cowboy and attain great repute. His life is a struggle; he is neither able to resign to the life of a white man nor find reliable companionship with a native Indian. He travels further where, in Oklahoma, he manages to build enduring friendships with a group of natives. The village chief is impressed and offers his adopted daughter Raven Feather, a lovely maiden, to Tom. Tom and Raven start their life as a happy and close couple, building their ranch, tending fields until one day when Tom becomes the father of twin girls. Now Tom continues doing all that he was doing and more, to encounter more exciting events of life.

Louisiana Man by Lloyd Antypowich is a story of endurance, love and vision. The struggles the young Tom underwent in the initial days of his apprenticeship with the west, like learning to shoot from the hip and branding livestock, and how fruitfully he used those times to learn and master those skills, make for interesting reading. His intimate relationship with Raven and close attachment to his daughters has been made visible by expressive sentences in the novel. This is a good story, quite moving and deeply enjoyable. As the author mentions towards the end, “There were not too many tracks that Tom didn’t leave a few hoof prints on.”


This book can be purchased on

This character interview stuff is too much fun! Here is the interview I had with … be still my heart… sexy cowboy, Colt Thompson. From my book “The Second Time Around” Book I of the Belanger Creek Ranch series.

Gloria: What is your current state of mind?

cowboy coltColt: Do you mean how do I feel about life? I’m a workaholic. In my heart, I want to live at Belanger Creek Ranch, but since my Dad had a heart attack, I’ve returned to the farm at Cantaur, and I’m running it now and trying to keep my dad out of trouble. It’s not how I imagined my life being, but I’ve learned the hard way that life doesn’t go the way you imagined.

Gloria: Why do you say that?

Colt: Well, I’m cured of any illusions about love and romance. I was married once and I worshipped that woman. I loved her with a passion … until I found out that she was cheating on me. I would have tried to work around any problems we might have been having in the marriage, but that wasn’t her final betrayal. The last one cut me to the bone. I hated her for that one, and I filed for divorce immediately. She left me with nothing but the clothes on my back, and a mountain of debt…a painful lesson well learned! I will never lay myself open to a repeat performance. Love, romance and happy marriages are an illusion. Even if I thought I could fall in love with someone again, I’d do everything possible to make sure it didn’t happen. It simply isn’t worth the pain.

Gloria: Do your parent’s have a happy marriage?

Colt: Yeah, my parents are great. My mom is a saint. Dad has his faults—he’s stubborn like me. He’s always been a farmer and a workaholic, I guess I get some of my traits from him. Yeah, I would have to say that basically, my parents have a great marriage. I’ve noticed nowadays most women aren’t like my mom. They don’t commit to a relationship the way she has. They are too busy doing their own thing.

You sound a bit bitter, even chauvinistic.

Colt: I am bitter and I think I have a reason to be. I’ve been called chauvinistic before…yeah I’ve even been called an ass. But I am what I am, because a woman taught me the realities of life.

Gloria: You are a good looking man and you are relatively young, are you in a relationship with anyone now?

Colt: No, nothing romantic or too serious. I’ve been seeing a woman in Swift Current called Shauna Lee Holt. We are and friends,,, (he quirks an eyebrow) with benefits. We both have needs that we satisfy for each other, but we are not in love, so no one is going to get hurt if the other walks away. Neither one of us will try to abscond with half of the other person’s life’s work. She owns the firm that does our accounting work, so financially she is secure. Dad and I are partners in Thompson Holdings: Cantaur Farm, and Belanger Creek Ranch are both entities of it.

Gloria: Do you always feel you need to play it safe?

Colt: I got royally screwed over emotionally and financially once; it isn’t going to happen again!

Gloria: What is the trait you most despise in others?

Colt: Dishonesty… betrayal!

Gloria: What is the quality you like most in a woman?

Colt: I’m surprised you would ask me that.

 Gloria: Seriously, before you were hurt, what did you look for in a woman?

Colt: If I were looking for a woman now, it would be different from what I looked for back then. When I was young looks and a great body meant a lot. And the woman I married loved horses and the rodeo life, and so did I. I thought we were a perfect match, but it was all a fantasy. I was so besotted, I forgot that we had a farm and a ranch to run, until Dad jerked me up short and made it clear that if I was part of the business, I had to pull my weight with the work.

If I were to look for a woman now looks wouldn’t be as important… yeah, I know… every man likes to wake up to a good looking face on the pillow and a slender strong body snuggled into your arms. But seriously, honesty, loyalty, a sense of humor, someone who cares as much about you as she does herself, a woman who enjoys what you do—especially when your business is a ranch or farming. The ideal woman for me is someone who will work beside you through the long days, and the good times and bad. I’d want a woman who loved kids. I always wanted a family until…well that’s another story. We’d both have to be considerate and respect each others moods—everyone has a shitty day once in a while. She’d have to understand that there is a time to play—although I seldom do that; but work has to come first around here. I’m not saying she’d have to be a clone of me. I know we’d both have to give and take. But since I’m NOT looking for another woman to be part of my life, none of that matters.

Gloria: What if you met a woman with all of those qualities, what would you do?

Colt: Run as fast as I could. I’d marry a horse (I love them) before I’d ever let myself get addled brained enough to get involved with another woman. I’d never count on getting it right the second time around. Believe me… once was enough!

 Image credit for cowboy photo