This book is the essence of folksy Americana. It moves at its own pace and never really gets anywhere, but once you accustom yourself to it, you can sit back and enjoy Dobie's writing and reflect on how much has changed over the years. People with an odd sense of humor like myself will also find some rather amusing passages:
The Tigre Ranch is on one of the long, alligator-gar infested lakes of the Nueces flats about five miles below the Olmos headquarters. For many years now the only inhabitants of the dilapidated house have been a family of white owls. The man who built it and was master of the range about it was Zack Hargus--uncle of the Doctor Hargus who dug at Estambel Hill for gold under human bones--and was as odd a character as ever enjoyed his own oddities. He was something of a reader and very much of a tobacco chewer. His favorite position for reading and chewing was on the gallery overlooking the lake, his chair tilted back against the wall on the left-hand side of a window that opened into the dining room. Here by the hour he would sit, reading and chewing. When he wanted to spit, he merely turned his head slightly to the right and spat inside the window. That took less energy than leaning forward to spit off the gallery. He made it a habit to work harder on Sunday than on any other day. Once he built a chimney to his house, working on it only on Sundays. After the country was fenced up, he invariably left the gates open when he went to Cotulla. He was not much of a lover of horses. Sometimes he kept them tied up for a day or two without water. Year in and year out he kept a horse staked to an old wagon axle driven into the ground out in the sacaguista grass; naturally there was not much grass around this stake pin. He had odd names for his horses, too; one of them he called Jesus. One time he told a boy who was working for him to drive the team across the river for some posts. When the horses got into the water, one of them drank himself to death. The boy came back to report the loss. "Oh, Mr. Hargus," he cried, "old Jesus has done went and drank water till he died."