Zebra, $5.99, ISBN 0-8217-7061-6
Historical Romance, 2002
Dance on the Wind is strange. The best way I can describe it is that it is a cartoon-like tale of flipping wagons, king kong Native Americans, and nodding dumb bunny heroines, and villains pursuing our hero and heroine the way Wile E Coyote pursues the Road Runner. Flipping boulders, cartwheeling carriages, you name it, it’s in here somewhere. Does Ms Jernigan have stocks with Acme?
Brandy is our heroine. Homeless, penniless, parentless, thrown out on the streets, and while she is literate, she can’t get any job – she has to apply to be a mail order bride instead. So now all she needs is a man to drive her across the Wild West to her waiting hubby. In comes our noble Native American, Thunder (Thomas Bradley) and his horse Lightning. Thunder is one confused guy. He doesn’t know whether he should talk in bad macho he-man grammar and uga-uga vocabulary as befits his status as an “exotic half-breed hero” or as a normal human being. So he does both, much to the delight of schizophrenics everywhere.
This story doesn’t just pander to readers looking for heroes in breechclouts speaking in conga me-Indian-you-white-lily eloquence, it also panders to the fans of Looney Tunes. Villains shoot gigantic bazooka guns but miss, there seems to always people wanting to rape and hurt our bunny-brained heroine, and don’t get me started about the author making Thunder the Mr I Can Do Everything or how Bunny turns out to be… uhh, never mind.
Thinking of the story already has me feeling rather dizzy. The dialogs sound as if they are done by overenthusiastic bastard spawns of Elmer Fudd, the plot done by Daffy Duck’s dim-witted brother, and the romance done by Bugs Bunny after too many joints. I must admit that there’s a certain train wreck charm to this book, but that’s because I am hoping that things will get progressively more lurid and ridiculous as the story progresses.
I’m still trying to figure out whether I should be delighted or dismayed that I am not disappointed in that aspect.