By Glenn Dromgoole
Jay Moore tells the story of the Dodge Jones Foundation and the generous family who made it possible in his handsome new coffee-table book, Legacy. It’s already a hot seller at Texas Star Trading Company ($40, with proceeds benefiting the Abilene Heritage Square project), and Jay signs them all.
You’ll learn a lot of Abilene history in Moore’s account of Judy Matthews, her mother Ruth Legett Jones, and the foundation they founded in 1954.
Often with coffee table books, readers might be likely to thumb through them and just look at the pictures. This is one that you really want to sit down and read. I call it a kitchen-table book because that’s where I read it. (It’s a little unwieldy to hold in your lap.)
The first half of the book focuses on the Legett-Jones-Matthews families, and the second section deals with the incredible impact of the Dodge Jones Foundation during its 64-year history. The foundation closed a year or so after Mrs. Matthews’ death in 2016.
Bush Family: Jenna Bush Hager writes lovingly of her grandparents, George and Barbara Bush, in her new book, Everything Beautiful in Its Time: Seasons of Love and Loss ($26.99 hardcover).
Joe Alcorta: Retired HSU Spanish professor Joe Alcorta has compiled several dozen of his Abilene Reporter-News guest columns over the years and published them in a new book, In My Opinion ($15 trade paperback). His book represents what one honest, humble man has stood for in his eighty years: love of God, love of family, love of country, love of community, love of life.
Paulette Jiles: New novel by popular Texas writer Paulette Jiles is Simon the Fiddler ($27.99 hardcover), about the many adventures of 23-year-old fiddler Simon Boudlin in the last battle of the Civil War and the years immediately after the end of the war. A really good read.
Wilder Good: Lubbock novelist/teacher S. J. Dahlstrom, who has won several Western book awards with his Wilder Good series of novels for middle school boys, spins another lively outdoor adventure tale in Silverbelly ($9.95 paperback). Dahlstrom is a protégé of John Erickson, author of the hugely popular Hank the Cowdog series.
More to Come: Well, that’s just a start. This is the time of year when new books roll off the presses in time for holiday shopping. I’ll give another rundown soon in the next issue of Book Notes.