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Boundaries: An Old West Tale

   (10 reviews)

A lot can occur in a single day, and this day starts with Virgil Pruitt riding into a sad, struggling Texas town seven years after the end of the Mexican-American War. Sometimes it's not easy to be a good man, one who calls out unfair hate when he sees it, but Virgil doesn't always look for easy. Will he pay the price for being such a man, or will he be rewarded for standing up for young Wyatt Burnham?

Mention of physical and sexual abuse.

Copyright © 2022 Headstall; All Rights Reserved.

Story Recommendations (23 members)

  • Action Packed 18
  • Addictive/Pacing 18
  • Characters 23
  • Chills 5
  • Cliffhanger 2
  • Compelling 19
  • Feel-Good 18
  • Humor 1
  • Smoldering 9
  • Tearjerker 3
  • Unique 10
  • World Building 10

  • Like 7
  • Love 25
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Timothy M.

   1 of 1 member found this review helpful 1 / 1 member

The reviews of the readers before me have already described perfectly why you should plunge into this wonderful story of Virgil Pruitt who embodies all the qualities we want to find in our best friend and the love of our life. Beautifully written, as always, Gary. :hug: 

Response from the author:

Some men stand taller than others, and Virgil is one of those. Glad you found it beautifully written, Tim, and I appreciate you urging readers to plunge into the story. I am really pleased with the reaction from those who have given it a chance. Thanks for leaving such a good review. Cheers! 

  • Love 4
Link to review
Albert1434

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Just a perfect western full of Gary Magic which is so beautifully written. With great dialogue and faultless description, a story which I dearly love. I love it I am sure you will also see if I am wrong but I am not! 

Response from the author:

I think I need you to handle all my press releases, Albert! :)  I appreciate your kind words of recommendation for this story, and I never tire of this thing you call 'Gary magic'. Thank you, my dear friend. Cheers! 

  • Love 6
Link to review
W_L

   3 of 3 members found this review helpful 3 / 3 members

A lovely story set in antebellum Texas that has a town on the edge due to raiding and rising intolerance. I love Virgil's clear-headed frontiersman mentality, Wyatt's innocent sensuality, and the tension that you created in this story concerning bigotry and scapegoating is top notch.

Response from the author:

Thanks, W-L! I've really enjoyed your comments and support of this little western, and I hope new readers will take this review to heart. Virgil is a man to be noticed, and Wyatt is one of the downtrodden. Their chance meeting fuels excitement, both personal, and within the terrorized town. Yes, it is a western, but give it a chance. I reckon you'll like it fine. :)  Cheers! 

  • Love 6
Link to review
Doha

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

A short tale filled with the full gambit of human emotion, Boundaries: An Old West Tale, allows us a brief glimpse of life and love in the old west. 

Virgil and Wyatt meet under tense circumstances and their emotional responses to one another and the subsequent character development is simply marvelous to witness.

A must read, whether you like westerns or not. 

Response from the author:

Thanks, Doha, for the wonderful testament to this story. "Boundaries" delves into prejudice and bigotry, but it is also a story of conviction and hope. I appreciate your recommendation and your kind words. Folks, listen to Doha, and I promise you won't be disappointed. :)  Cheers!

  • Like 1
  • Love 4
Link to review
Mrsgnomie

   3 of 3 members found this review helpful 3 / 3 members

I love a good western and Headstall nails it every time. This was no different. Virgil is strong, calm, observant, and doesn’t hold back how he feels. He’s kinda perfect. Wyatt, despite living a life that no one would envy, is still full of life and kindness.

this is a perfect binge story you won’t regret. 

Response from the author:

Thanks, Mrsgnomie. I appreciate that coming from such a fine writer as yourself. I do love writing about this time period. There is something about a cowboy...

You describe the main characters well. Vigil is one of the good ones, and I hope readers will heed your words of recommendation. Again, thanks for your support and kind words. Cheers!

  • Love 6
Link to review
drsawzall

   5 of 5 members found this review helpful 5 / 5 members

A fantastic western set a few years after the Mexican American war, set way down in Texas just above the Rio Grande.

Action packed a compelling tale, you'll be glad you took the time to read this.

Response from the author:

Thank you so much, doc! That war had an effect on the attitudes of the people in the bordering towns, as this story shows. They weren't always good effects, and those are what Virgil meets dead on. Appreciate your kind and ringing endorsement of this little tale. Hopefully, readers will take note. :)  Cheers!

  • Love 6
Link to review
raven1

   6 of 6 members found this review helpful 6 / 6 members

A story well told is a delight to most readers, no matter the genre.  The words create a setting that is easy to visualize, and the dialogue sparkles with a vitality that quickly bonds the reader to the two main characters.  The plot is simple, but also contains a bit of mystery to intrigue the reader.  This short story is a great introduction to Headstall, a master storyteller no matter which genre he writes.  He has written many different stories in different genres, but they all are crafted with the same love and care you will find in this wonderful tale.

Response from the author:

Damn, Terry. You're making me blush. :)  I agree, though, that this is a good story with which to ease into my writing, and particularly if you like westerns. I have written a lot of longer stories, but I am just as focused when writing shorter ones. I love when readers comment on my dialogue... it is immensely satisfying. There is a mystery in this little tale, but there is so much more, and your kinds words will help readers decide if they want to read it. I thank you for that. Cheers!

  • Love 7
Link to review
Mancunian

   6 of 6 members found this review helpful 6 / 6 members

A short tale of two kindred souls finding each other in the old west amongst the prejudice and hate that existed then, not to mention the betrayal and greed. I'd love to read a follow-up, read it and I think you will agree with me.

Response from the author:

And I'd love to write a follow up. We'll see where my muse takes me. Even though this is written in a different time period, the fact is the people aren't so different from modern times. Unfortunately, hate and prejudice comes easily to humans, but it doesn't mean we don't fight the good fight. They needed people like Virgil back then, and we need them still. Thanks for your awesome support and wonderful review, my friend. Cheers!

  • Love 7
Link to review
centexhairysub

   8 of 8 members found this review helpful 8 / 8 members

Love tales of the Old West; and perhaps one of the best writers of them that I have read in years is @Headstall.  

The writing and pacing were first rate and the character development was great for such a short story.  Came to really care about the main characters quickly.  And yes, I believe that love can happen at a glance, or at least the beginning of it.

I could easily see this as a prelude to a much longer story about either the journey to Larkspur or about after they arrive; or hell maybe both.

Sit a spell and enjoy a truly delightful few chapters that will draw you in fully and captivate you totally.

Response from the author:

Thank you, centex. You are very kind to say such things. I love writing westerns, and I try to be as authentic as I can. I'm so stoked I was able to get you to care about these characters right from the start. If we don't connect with the characters, there is no story. I found myself wanting to write a much longer tale once I started this, but was able to use my hard-fought-for discipline to rein myself in. In the end, I am pleased with what these four chapters achieved. Thanks for such an encouraging review, buddy. I hope it will entice other readers to check this one out. Cheers! 

  • Like 1
  • Love 8
Link to review
Gary L

· Edited by Gary L

   8 of 8 members found this review helpful 8 / 8 members

The great thing about anthologies is that IF you take them seriously and read tales whose genre isn’t your usual taste then it can be a real pleasure.

This story of Wyatt and Virgil is a great example.  It is beautifully written, delicately paced, and rich in character.  Don’t worry if you are not a western fan, this is a universal tale of discovery.  Excellent 

Response from the author:

Wow! Thank you, Gary! I think this is a universal tale as well, but I am biased. :) I put a lot of care into my work, and I have to say this one satisfies me greatly. Would I like to have explored it further? Absolutely, but there is a lot to be said for a conveniently shorter tale. I appreciate your glowing review and your kind words very much. Cheers!  

  • Like 1
  • Love 9
Link to review
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