The latest book, Skidboot, the Smartest Dog in the World, is the gripping story of a Texas cattle dog who captures the minds and hearts of the world as he evolves from an unleashed dervish to the most highly responsive, intuitive dog on the rodeo and media circuit. From Oprah to Letterman to Leno, Skidboot parades his startling skills to fans worldwide. From his birth in a barn to riding herd over thousands of admiring fans, Skidboot learns from his cowboy owner, David Hartwig, how to encourage the sick, shock rodeo fans, surprise TV audiences and turn the financial tide. The story of Skidboot is an all-American tale, from underdog to top dog as a true canine Einstein, a new Lassie. This is a story for our times.
Earlier books have combined archival photographs and text based on diaries and journals of the overland travelers in frontier America from the mid 1800s to 1915. Each book was conceived as a theme—women, children, cooking, evangelists, men, medicine, courtship practices—and developed by visiting archives around the country. I read hundreds of journals, old letters, and diaries written by the pioneers. I studied thousands of old photographs, then combining them into the documentary style narratives on the west which have been published over the last 31 years.
An interest in food led to writing The Hot Flash Cookbook, which offers recipes filled with phytoestrogens to women suffering hot flashes. Phytoestrogens gently replace diminished amounts of natural estrogen in the body, and eating foods rich in phytoestrogens ideally helps manage hot flashes. This was a new idea, but my New York publishers thought no one wanted to hear about menopause. Chronicle Books in San Francisco thought otherwise. The young staff there couldn’t wait to bring the book out. A thorough roasting on Jay Leno shot the The Hot Flash Cookbook to national attention and sales followed for years after.