Friend of Cotton Kingfisher and author of award winning novels Adios Nirvana and Dirt Bikes, Drones and Other Ways to Fly Conrad Wesselhoeft gave Bust It Like a Mule a review that I feel like needs to be on the back of the book. Thanks Conrad, we couldn't agree more about Tom Waits!
"Tales live long on the rails like whispered mythologies over late night star fires . . . and the mythologies of Cotton was long and
far and many."
Meet Cotton Kingfisher, a man of outsize passion soaked in a marinade of grit, guts, and braggadocio.
BUST IT LIKE A MULE is author Caleb Mannan’s tour de force blend of literary traditions—mixing the Paul Bunyan-esque tall tale with the folk wisdom of Woody Guthrie and the restless lyricism of Jack Kerouac.
Mannan has a gift for the felicitous turn of phrase:
"He gave away cans of beans and ears of corn and field rabbits and scrounged grouse." (Scrounged grouse!)
"The American highway cut concrete stretchmarks across the belly of the states."
"It rained so much even God got the blues."
We readers hunger for heroes who personify courage, strength, and savvy. Think Daniel Boone, Davy Crockett, Lewis & Clark, Crazy Horse, and Chief Joseph. In fiction and film, think Louis L'Amour's Sackett brothers, Indiana Jones, Superman, and Batman.
Caleb Mannan has added a new name to the list—the inimitable Cotton Kingfisher.
P.S.: BUST IT LIKE A MULE cries out to be made into an audio book. But it would require an iconic American voice to pull it off. I nominate Tom Waits.