The Summer Boy: A Novel of Texas

Ray Rhamey. Platypus, $14.95 trade paper (276p) ISBN 978-0-615-49906-2
Rhamey (The Vampire Kitty-Cat Chronicles) does a nice job of capturing the uncertainties and challenges of adolescence in this whodunit set in 1958 Texas. High school student Jesse Carver is working as a hand on the Box 8, a cattle ranch for the summer, along with his best friend, Dudley Miller, whose mother landed them the positions. The work, which includes a lot of digging holes, is less exciting than he imagined, and Buddy, the foreman, is a hard and sadistic taskmaster, but there’s one compensation: the rancher’s daughter, Lola Braun, who’s about 16, is “already the kind of girl a boy undressed with his eyes.” Lola’s physical attributes have also attracted the attention of the two Mexicans working at the Box 8, and violence ensues, eventually culminating in a murder by pitchfork. Jesse, who’s scarred by the circumstances of his father’s untimely death, makes a sympathetic lead, and Rhamey keeps the surprises coming. Fans of romantic thrillers will find a lot to like. (BookLife)
Reviewed on: 05/15/2017
Release date: 10/01/2011
Genre: Fiction
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