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Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Wild Bill Williams - first look at cover art and exclusive extract

Those nice people at Robert Hale's Black Horse Westerns have sent me a copy of the cover design they will use for my October hardcover western, Wild Bill Williams.

I like it - Wild Bill, given name William Williams, is an altogether different kind of western hero. Jokingly referred to as, the fastest stitch in the west, but not to his face, mind. Why is this? Well it'll all become clear when you read the book this October, but for now feast your eyes on the wonderful cover artwork, and check out the brief selection from the book below.

Records show that between 1850 and 1920 some 80,000 Welshmen left their native lands for America. The true figure would be much higher as Welsh people were often recorded as being English, which for some reason, did not happen with the Scots and Irish. Whatever the true figure, the fact is that there were a great many Welshmen in America during the period we now think of as the Wild West. The Welsh made their own unique contribution to the mixing pot that was late nineteenth century America.
This is the story of one of those Welshmen.
Wild Bill Williams.

There was nary a frown when Wild Bill Williams was in town. He had a way about his manner that enabled most folks to forget all their troubles and become positively festive. It was said that Bill could start off a dance at a funeral and carve a grin out of the most granite of faces. 

He had been born a Welshman; in a village called Gilfach Goch, a name that was unpronounceable to all but himself. But as a young man of fifteen summers, with no compulsion to go and work in the coalmines, those same mines that had aged his father beyond his years, he had had set out in search of adventure and found himself stowed away on a ship making the Atlantic crossing to the United States. He’d landed in New York and after a few aimless years had started out West in search of the future he had in mind for himself.

Go West, Young Man, and grow up with the country”, The New York Tribune had advised in striking headlines that had filled men such as Bill Williams with optimism for a future on the rugged frontier. It had seemed Bill’s destiny to follow the westward trail. 

What that destiny was no one, Bill included, knew.



Nik said...

Great - I love it - the cover and the book concept.

Gary Dobbs/Jack Martin said...

Nik - you may remember you reviewed a slim book about welsh cowboys. Well it was some of the info in that book that gave me the spark for this one. It's not exactly a comedy but there is a lot of humour from the characters.