Western Swing

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Overview

November 1998

"What propels Western Swing is a cheerfully unfashionable conviction that in spite of past mistakes, lost hopes, and emotional pain, these two people belong together.... Mr. Sandlin brilliantly and knowingly captures the spirit of the Wyoming wilderness."--New York Times Book Review

"A celebration of tenacious spirits...Sandlin's is a book about running into ...

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1990 Paperback Grade: C Catalog: Fiction Contemporary Synopsis: 323 pages. Loren Paul is in the middle of a very personal crisis. Looking for a sign, he sits in a tree in the ... middle of beautiful nowhere-Wyoming-... Read more Show Less

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1989 Mass-market paperback Fair. No dust jacket as issued. Mass market (rack) paperback. Glued binding. Audience: General/trade.

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Western Swing

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Overview

November 1998

"What propels Western Swing is a cheerfully unfashionable conviction that in spite of past mistakes, lost hopes, and emotional pain, these two people belong together.... Mr. Sandlin brilliantly and knowingly captures the spirit of the Wyoming wilderness."--New York Times Book Review

"A celebration of tenacious spirits...Sandlin's is a book about running into the sun and keeping on, with humor, passion, and faith...."--Los Angeles Times

With praise coming from critics and readers alike, Tim Sandlin is clearly a name to watch. In addition to rave literary reviews, Drew Barrymore, Tom Arnold, and Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon are all big fans of this Wyoming writer, who turns the mundane into high comedy.

With Lana Sue's name tattooed on his back, Loren is determined to win his love's affection. He got the tattoo during his high school years, but Lana Sue's affections did not come until nearly 18 years later, after both had been married and divorced. While Loren is on a mission to discover himself high above the mountains of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Lana Sue decides she has had enough and takes off for parts unknown, equipped with the shirt on her back, a pair of jeans, and a $20 bill.

A frustrated country singer with hopes of someday becoming the next Patsy Cline, Lana Sue has had enough of Loren's odd behavior. To make matters even worse, Lana Sue's daughter Cassie is sleeping with Lana Sue's ex-boyfriend. But when Lana Sue bumps into a suicidal rancher who takes her home to meet his dysfunctional family, she begins to realize that her family situation is really not so bad.

Meanwhile, Loren's trip to the woods has taken a turn for the worse, as a crazed gunman stalks him among the flora and fauna. Recalling episodes from the life he is trying to save, Loren is headed into a showdown with his past, and only Lana Sue can help him. Filled with a crew of off-kilter characters, Western Swing is a country song -- funny, sad, and unbelievably true -- come to life. 6th.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Loren Paul, a 35-year-old writer of westerns, sits on an isolated Wyoming mountaintop in a semi-delirious state from a long fast, waiting for divine guidance. He is literally waiting to hear from God, since he feels that God has a lot of explaining to do. Loren wants to know, for example, why his only child disappeared on a camping trip many years ago, a tragedy that led to the death of his first wife. And why has his second and current wife, Lana Sue, a sexy and free-spirited country-and-western singer, taken to the open road, forsaking their idyllic domestic nest? Despite the end-of-the-line sense of desperation evoked by this situation, this is a droll and high-spirited novel about the eccentric lives and loves of Loren and his footloose wife. For just as Loren sits on a mountaintop aerie reflecting on his life, Lana Sue, whose past seems the embodiment of the country-and-western songs she adores, is off on her own odyssey of self-discovery. Her route, however, is a little different: she seeks headlong solace in the sweet oblivion of one-night stands, although quickly gets herself entangled in a relationship that tests her plucky cowgirl mettle to its fullest. There is something of the loopy invention and drollery of Tom Robbins in Sandlin's voice. Particularly in the early parts of the book, Sandlin Sex and Sunsets overindulges his fondness for whimsy, but once the narrative gets underway he reveals solid storytelling talent and the ability to create two vividly sympathetic characters whose adventures have something of the grit and pathos of a funky country-and-western ballad. April
Library Journal
In the Tom Robbins-Rita Mae Brown tradition of humor comes this hilarious novel of Loren Paul, a Western writer who is currently atop a mountain seeking answers to cosmic questions, and his wife, Lana Sue, a much-married country-and-western singer. She leaves Loren, and they take turns telling their stories; so while Loren remembers his past and muses on the meaning of life, Lana Sue starts out on a series of one-night stands that eventually involve an almost suicide, murderous intentions, and lots of raunch. This is a Western in the most modern sense, and humor is definitely ``black.'' The dialogue is snappy, the characters richly drawn, and the detail such that we know not only the kind of gum but how many sticks. Rosellen Brewer, Monterey Cty. Lib., Seaside, Cal.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804104661
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/29/1989
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 336

Meet the Author

Tim Sandlin is the author of the GroVont trilogy—Skipped Parts, Sorrow Floats, and Social Blunders—as well as Western Swing, Sex and Sunsets, and Honey Don't. He is also the author of a collection of columns from the Jackson Hole News called The Pyms: Unauthorized Tales of Jackson Hole.

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Interviews & Essays


Before the live bn.com chat, Tim Sandlin agreed to answer some of our questions:

Q:  Who are some of your all-time favorite authors?

A:  Larry McMurtry, Walker Percy, the Johns -- Nichols, Steinbeck, and Irving -- Jim Harrison, Tom McGuane, Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh, Sue Grafton.

Q:  We all know that Drew Barrymore is a huge fan of your writing. Are you a fan of her work?

A:  Drew is an amazing human being. Her method of acting is to become whatever character she is playing, which means she should choose her roles carefully,because that's who she is going to be for a while. Yes, I enjoy watching her work.

Q:  Do you still enjoy living in Jackson Hole, Wyoming?

A:  I love Jackson Hole and don't want to live anywhere else, even in winter, when it's 40 below zero.

Q:  Have you read anything recently that you absolutely loved?

A:  Hardcastle by John Yount, The Merry Heart by Robertson Davies.... I just started Burning the Days by James Salter, and I bought a book of poetry by Stephen Dobyns recently that knocked me over.

Q:  I noticed that your résumé includes some pretty interesting work, or so it seems on the surface. Which past job would you consider to be the most interesting? Why?

A:  Fifteen years before my first publication, I took an off-season job skinning elk, because I knew someday it would look cool on a dust jacket. My favorite job was trail inventory for the Forest Service. They lose trails over the years and have to send someone out to find them. Mostly, though, I was a Chinese cook. I rolled over 20,000 egg rolls.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2013

    Finnek

    Stickes his dick in her mouth

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2013

    Violet

    Its ok

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2012

    Great

    One of my favs

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