Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Vivian Zabel, Author and Publisher
It's VBT - Writers on the Move's September tour and it gives me great pleasure to present Vivian Gilbert Zabel. Vivian will be my guest today, and again on Thursday, September 3rd. Just as a note, Vivian also goes by V. Gilbert Zabel. Today, we’ll learn a little about Vivian with a short bio and we’ll also take a peek at one of her juvenile books, Prairie Dog Cowboy.
As with most women raising a family and working, Vivian put her writing career in slow gear until she retired. Then, after almost thirty years of teaching, she devoted her time to writing. It seems this is the trend of women in today’s society; one career ends and another is picked up. Ah, the power of us women! But, this is even more of an accomplishment for someone suffering with rheumatoid arthritis and Lupus. To steadily move forward while handling serious chronic illnesses is quite an achievement since at times just living with a chronic illness can be a full time job. Well, Vivian is not only a published author of short stories, poems, and novels, she also created and runs 4RV Publishing. Vivian is certainly a testament to determination, perseverance and strength.
Vivian has three juvenile books and one mystery/suspense (with a touch of thriller) novel under her belt and today we’ll take a look at one of the juvenile books: Prairie Dog Cowboy. Just the name alone sounds great; it makes you want to shout: Giddy Up! Here’s an impressive review:
Prairie Dog Cowboy by V. Gilbert Zabel
Time passes so quickly and history is getting rewritten all the time. So much of our heritage is lost with those changes. It is refreshing to see a slice of reality portraying the daily life of 1899 Oklahoma in V. Gilbert Zabel's latest literary work, "Prairie Dog Cowboy".
Buddy Roberts is but a small boy at the start of the story. It isn’t clear right away why his mother is set against the child. Although he has an older brother, he's tending to the cattle at the age of five, all alone with only his dog to keep him company. Buddy is a mindful child, doing what needs to be done, even at such a young age, hoping some day to grow up to be a cowboy. Instead of him and Patch doing the work on foot, he dreams of herding cattle on horseback someday.
Neighbor rancher Caleb Hyman is impressed with Buddy. He wonders, too, why the child works hard while his older brother, Jake, is doted on and spoiled. But, Caleb can see the man that Buddy will become, encourages him, and teaches him to rope. Once Buddy can rope a prairie dog, Caleb promises he'll give the boy a job on his ranch. Not an easy thing to do, but Buddy works hard to reach his appointed goal.
Through the years, Buddy becomes a part of Caleb's family, a friend of Caleb's twin sons, and the unknowing object of affection for their younger sister, Katie. Life begins to take a turn for the better as he approaches manhood.
"Prairie Dog Cowboy" is a testament of a time when life was hard, but people weren't afraid of hard work. The day-to-day occurrences represented are an accurate telling of the time, history that should not be lost. Teens and young adults can learn much from this story and I, for one, am thankful that Ms. Zabel has documented this slice of American history.
Reviewed by Jena' Galifany
Author, Editor, Reviewer
I love juvenile books that weave accurate history into their stories; it’s such a great way for children to learn without realizing they’re actually learning. And, as the reviewer, Jena Galifany, mentions, it’s a wonderful means of preserving our history.
Be sure to check the links below to get your own copy of Prairie Dog Cowboy today:
Talk to you soon,