Winner, 2022 Spur Award - Western Writers of America
"Cow Boyhood is unapologetically traditional in its valorizing of grit, stoicism and manliness." - The Wall Street Journal
Thirteen-year-old Wilder has spent his boyhood watching men like his grandpa Papa Milam . . . and wanting to be like them. Now he is leaving on a two day cattle drive through river and canyon country with his aging Papa and another older man, Red Guffey. In big ranch country full of livestock and wild animals, Wilder is forced to recognize that his own instincts and abilities may have become greater than those of his heroes.
S.J. Dahlstrom lives and writes in West Texas with his wife and children. A fifth-generation Texan, Dahlstrom’s Wilder Good series is a three-time winner of the Wrangler Western Heritage Award, the Will Rogers Medallion four times, finalist for the Lamplighter Award four times, and a Spur award along with two Spur finalists from the Western Writers of America.
Interested in all things outdoors and creative, he writes poetry while bowhunting and collects wildflower seeds when doing ranch work. He lives by the twin mottos ‘Be Wilder’ and ‘Find Beauty’ and is happiest when he doesn’t have to comb his hair.
S.J.’s writing draws on his experiences as a cowboy, husband, father— and as a founder of Whetstone Boys Ranch. He says, “I wrote these stories about Wilder Good for kids who grew up in the outdoors and for kids who long for the outdoors…working, fishing, hunting, farms, ranches, mountains and prairies. We should not forget that we have real adventure to offer kids, if we can have the courage to turn off our machines and screens and go outside.”