August 2007 Issue

On the Cover

The Next Frontier

How has the state’s most storied ranch managed to survive and thrive in the twenty-first century? By operating in a way that its founder, Captain Richard King, would scarcely recognize.


The Woman On Top

So what if Sandra Brown’s novels have wildly implausible plot twists, banal endings, over-the- top characters, and other literary no-no’s. She’s published nearly 70 of them since 1981, and 55 have gone on to be best-sellers. We’re sure the sex scenes have nothing to do with it.


Michael Ennis


Where the great silent majority is taking politics, here and elsewhere.


Jody Conradt

“Kids used to be so excited just to have an opportunity to play. Now I see more of a mentality of entitlement: ‘I’m a tremendous athlete, so you owe me this.”

How to Brand the Herd

The RationaleWhy make a lasting impression on your cattle? To fend off cattle rustlers, whose pilfering of literal cash cows is hardly a defunct business (ranchers in the Southwest lost $6.2 million in livestock in 2005). “Think of branding as a license plate on your car, a means of identification,”

Author Interview

Michael Erard

The Austin journalist and linguistics expert ponders the nature of speech imperfections and what verbal gaffes reveal, or don’t, in Um…Slips, Stumbles, and Verbal Blunders, and What They Mean.What qualifies as a “verbal blunder”?It can be a slip of the tongue or any moment where something we’ve planned to

Author Interview


In a case of coincidental plot devices, two of Texas’s favorite fictional gumshoes recently swore off the detecting business because of an unfortunate tendency to call down death on their nearest and dearest. But quitting the private-eye racket is easier said than done, and the summer reading pile finds both

Book Review

What Gives

“i think/i am going to die tonight./and some-thing inside me/looks forward to it./and something inside me/is twisting my intestines around,/trying to make letters out of them,/trying to spell the word/NO.” When sixteen-year-old Chelsea Marie wrote those chilling words a little over a year ago, she had also composed a

Music Review

New Moon

Before “Miss Misery” took the Duncanville-raised singer Elliott Smith from indie cult to mainstream pop status, Smith fronted a band called Heatmiser, one of a hundred acts looking to be the next Nirvana. With his fragile voice and persona, Smith made an even more unlikely grunge rocker than Kurt

Music Review

Twilight on Sometimes Island

The members of Austin’s Li’l Cap’n Travis are an unlikely bunch: With multiple writers and singers in place of a front man and a bevy of backing musicians, this is a real band—and they’ve been that way from the beginning. They aren’t conventional (no hitting the road in a

Music Review

Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965–1970

This year marks the fortieth anniversary of the fabled Summer of Love, and the four-CD Love Is the Song We Sing: San Francisco Nuggets 1965—1970 (Rhino) commemorates the occasion with a thrilling showcase of the Bay Area sounds that defined a generation. These sounds weren’t just Californian, however. “Everybody

Artist Interview

James Cotton

The blues harmonica giant, who is now 72, reunited with his former boss Muddy Waters in 1977 for the Grammy-winning Hard Again, which was spearheaded and produced by Beaumont’s Johnny Winter. After the success of the album, the three went on the road, but until the tapes that make up


Pat's Pick


Where are we, Miami? The Bahamas? The shimmering blues and aquatic greens say “seaside.” So do the shell light fixtures and the wavy-textured back wall, which reminds me of a David Hockney swimming pool. All that’s needed are a few coconut palms to complete the Caribbean vibe. What’s driving


Snapper Carpaccio

Snapper Carpaccio With Grapefruit Agra Dolce and Garlic BruschettaGrapefruit Marinade2 Ruby Red grapefruit, peeled and sectioned 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons salt 1 Thai chili, minced (you may also use red Serrano chili or chili pequín)Carefully combine all ingredients together in a bowl. Do not allow

Books That Cook

Author Denise Gee comes from a long line of Southerners who like to imbibe. Growing up in Natchez, Mississippi, she observed her fair share of Southern belles and seersuckered gentlemen with drink in hand. Eventually, cocktail hour became a distinctly personal and cultural experience for Gee, who set out


Editor's Letter

King for a Day

This month’s cover story is one for the history books—in two ways. First, because executive editor Sam Gwynne’s report on the myth, majesty, and future of the King Ranch (“The Next Frontier,”) is as sweeping as the ranch itself, and second, because it’s a report from the inside.

Roar of the Crowd

Coast Guardians

I was thrilled to see Lucinda Wierenga and the “Amazin’ Walter” McDonald’s sand castle on the cover. I’m glad to see that Texas Monthly is still looking for and honoring our more interesting citizens. We are what make Texas so great.S. TUCKERAlvinI recently returned from a five-day visit to

Explore the Archive

See all issues
Magazine Latest