Books | Texas
By W. F. Strong
Some of Them Are True
(Fort Worth: Berkeley Place Books, 2018)
Pages 144. Illustrated. Paperback. $11.99.
Review by Dr.
January 30, 2019
W. F. Strong teaches communication at the University of Texas Brownsville.
Perhaps he is best known, though, as the creator and voice of public-radio's
Stories From Texas, vignettes broadcast since 2000, that "celebrate
the Texas character in all its toughness… showcase poignant passages
from the vast literature this land has produced… and provide a narrative
for Texas pride, entrepreneurial success and Texas mythology."
This enjoyable little book includes seventy-five of the program's
most engaging commentaries. Dr. Strong divides his volume into thirteen
sections: Defining a Texan; My 10 Favorite Quotes About Texas; The
Texas Dialect and Tex-Centric Tendencies; Size Matters: Big Stuff;
The Vast Land: Tales of Texas Past; Larger-Than-Life Texans; Scribblers,
Bards and Troubadours; Iconic Texas; Changing Times; Dos Mundos; Happy-Hour
Homilies; Holidays and Observances; and Texas Family Memories. He
discusses such diverse and intriguing topics as Spanish explorer Cabeza
de Vaca; Texas grammar; the Colt six-shooter; weather in the Lone
Star State; Whataburger; rancher Charles Goodnight; oilman Glen McCarthy's
Shamrock Hotel; novelist Larry McMurtry; Southwest Airlines; Austin's
Moonlight Towers; Comanche captive Cynthia Ann Parker; The Texas Chainsaw
Massacre; Dallas Cowboys legend Coach Tom Landry; rattlesnakes; and
Dairy Queen (deeply associated with Texas, but actually founded in
Joliet, Illinois, in 1940).
Speaking like a native son, noted bibliophile and Abilene Reporter-News
writer Glenn Dromgoole asserts, "Ever' Texan oughta read this book."
I heartily agree; Texana enthusiasts will undoubtedly appreciate Strong's
entertaining and informative collection of Lone Star tales.
Book Review Editor,
Central Texas Studies
from Texas: Some of Them are True, Vol. II by W. F. Strong
Reviewed by Dr. Kirk Bane