LET 'ER BUCK! by Barbara Berry


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Honest, tough, courageous,"" ""made of iron,"" ""quite a man"" -- so the typical rodeo cowboy is described in an adulatory treatment that begins with the cliches of ""the Old West where men were men"" and proceeds through the good works and self-discipline of the Rodeo Cowboys Association to a defense of the performers against ""misguided humanitarians"" who ""waste much sympathy on the 'overworked' animals that would be better spent on the exhausted cowboys."" Specific examples of their courage and integrity would be more effective than all the adjectives, and the discussion of ""humaneness"" (though the 19 cited RCA rules seem to support the cowboys on this point) is too partisan to be totally convincing. The more businesslike second half of the book covers five standard rodeo events (rules, techniques, equipment, etc.), various specialty acts, and the logistics and economics of ""going on the road."" The treatment here is at a more mature level than in Glen Rounds' standard Rodeo (1949), but Let 'Er Buck will win fewer fans for the ""last frontier"" of ""he-man"" athletics.

Pub Date: June 15th, 1971
Publisher: Bobbs-Merrill