“People think it’s all snakes and scorpions out there in the oil patch, but hell, those are the most harmless things in the county.”reviewed Valentine (Harper Books) by West Texas native Elizabeth Wetmore for Lone Star Literary Life! In precise, stark language, Wetmore conjures menace and ironic, acerbic humor in this dazzling debut.
“Sunday morning begins . . . with a young roughneck stretched out and sleeping hard in his pickup . . . His cowboy hat is pulled down far enough that the girl sitting outside on the dusty ground can see only his pale jaw, freckled and nearly hairless, a face that will never need a daily shave, no matter how old he gets, but she is hoping he dies young.”
In the light of day, Gloria Ramírez can just make out a road leading to a ranch house. She can also see the roughneck’s skin and blood under her fingernails.
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