July 27, 2017

Jim's Books


Did you know John Wayne owned a ranch in Arizona? Have you heard the story of the first ever World Champion All Around Cowboy, Earl Thode? Have you heard the story about “Cundo,” who is in a wheelchair during the week then competes in roping competitions a-horseback on weekends?

Read about these, and the stories of over thirty other South westerners, who have each accomplished great things in their own special way.

Reviews for Cowboy Heroes of the Southwest:

“This was a book that fairly begged to be written. No one was better acquainted with these subjects, or better equipped to tell their stories, or more simpatico with their values, than Jim Olson. There are names here you’ll likely recognize, and some you won’t—but all have stories worth savoring. From legends, to larger-than-life figures, the individuals sketched in Cowboy Heroes of the Southwest are real, colorful, and unforgettable. All Americans owe it to themselves to hear the real story of Rob Krentz, an Arizonan killed on his border ranch and ignored by mainstream media. There is the poignant portrayal of the author’s now-deceased best friend, Tod Storey, and the rollicking exploits of Bill Clark, ‘cowboy entrepreneur,’ a man who once bought an entire town in Alaska and on one occasion was ‘thrown through the window of his own saloon during a bar fight.’ Even the Duke himself, John Wayne, strides through some of the pages of this fine volume. Olson savvies his subjects in a way few others could, and he shares his insights in a style that moves easily from in-depth reportage to humor to wistfulness to heartfelt tribute. Our Western literature is beholden to Olson, who has helped to preserve some of the best of our nation’s cowboy culture—and given us some role models and heroes we can all hope to emulate.”

-Jesse Mullins, editor and author,

Editor-in-Chief (1994-2009) of American Cowboy magazine

     "Here are stories of some of the real Southwest personalities...the cattlemen, cowboys and adventurers who have propelled the place in comparatively recent times. And many of their stories are rollicking and wild as the place itself! Meet and marvel at well over thirty of these folks (counting couples, teams and the Cowgirls' Historical Foundation)! Olson nicely puts meat on the bones of history with his amazing true tales of workaday grit, pathos and occasional humor that'll send your coffee out your nose. But, as the cover notes say, in the final analysis all accomplished great things in their own special ways. Within these pages you'll encounter champions and workers behind the scenes, women of substance and eccentric wildmen, kings and kingmakers...each of whom you'll enjoy visiting more than once. Cowboy Heroes of the Southwest is highly recommended. This is some of the truest reporting of our cowboy culture."

     -Rick Huff's, Best of the West 


Talk about a wreck! All of a sudden, this just wasn’t fun anymore.” Excerpt from "The Proud Bull."

This is a fun story about chasing wild cattle on a big New Mexico ranch. Although based upon actual events, it is a novel. Why let facts get in the way of a good story anyhow! Enjoy.