Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels

"That's when I saw him—the cowboy—across the smoky room."

This isn't just my love story; it's a universal tale of passion, romance, and all-encompassing love that sweeps us off our feet.

It's the story of a cowboy.  And Wranglers.  And chaps. 
And the girl who fell in love with them.
(from book jacket)

Mix together one part Victorian romance, one part Stephanie Plum antics, and one part Nicholas Sparks tear-jerker and you've got Ree Drummond's Black Heels to Tractor Wheels.   This is the stuff of Harlequines - love-at-first-sight with a soft-spoken, tall, dark and handsome hero who rides in on his steed to sweep her off her feet.  Of course, no Harlequin heroine would respond like a human blooper reel, as Ree does.  And no fiction damsel would need Ree's constant faux pas to add light spots to such a string of adversities.  If this book weren't shelved in the non-fiction section, you would accuse the author of exaggerating.  No one has that much romance, that much awkward bad luck, and that many trials, all merged with such unfortunate timing.  But she does.

Ree's incredible web-site ( television appearances, best-selling cookbook, beauty, style and ballet background paint her as the picture of poise and grace.  Surely this woman's life is perfect!  Surely she balances her roles as blogger, author, home-school teacher, mother, wife and ranch-hand like a cross between Jackie O. and June Cleaver! 

But reading about her embarrassing moments with pratfalls, sweat, botched facials, horses, running mascara, manure, and even *gasp* passing gas changed my picture of her.  I discovered that life hands her disappointment, fear and uncertainty just like it does the rest of us. 

The story of Ree and Marlboro Man reads like fiction, but knowing that it's "real", and therefore not a guaranteed happy ending, adds a twist.  As cliche as it sounds, I laughed (outloud), I cried, I couldn't put it down (read it in two evenings).  City girl or country girl - you'll love this "unlikely romance".

I also recommend Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl.

And watch for Charlie the Ranch Dog,  Ree's first children's book, to be released in April.


  1. I read this a couple years ago, back when she added a chapter every so often on her blog. That was also before the rest of the world discovered her. It was all so real and so sweet. I really hope this book and the children's book does as well as her cookbook.

  2. I really enjoy the Pioneer Woman's blog and I have tried several of her recipes from the cookbook. I am, however, obsessed with Charlie. Once I know it is a Charlie post I immediately start smiling and relish each and every picture of that winsome bassett hound.

    I am hoping that she will "pop up" to Kansas on a book signing tour in April when the Charlie book is released.