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Celebrating the Life

[Longhorn Review] Stay Away, Joe

Material Type: All, Books — Tags: Dan Cushman, Elvis Presley, Stay Away Joe — Posted on May 2, 2011, 3:42 pm

By: Dan Cushman (1953)

Dan Cushman wrote the novel Stay Away Joe in 1953. It was a
Book-of-the-Month-Club selection and reviewed by the New York Times. The book is a
mixture of a western, Indian comedy. The book is fairly old and is no longer being
printed. It is an easy read, and printed on actual paper by a press. Copies of the
book are somewhat hard to come by, but if you can get a hold of one it is well worth
it.

The book Stay Away, Joe was written for the sole purpose of bringing enjoyment
and laughter to the reader. Cushman wanted to write about the old western days in
order to show his readers the comical life of an Native American family that are
living between their reservation and the ways of the white man. The book is written
for people who enjoy comedies, western, Native American culture, and books that show
the everyday struggles of a family. Dan Cushman combines all of these attributes to
make an enjoyable book for the readers. Just in case you are curious I will give you
a brief overview of the book. Joe is a half breed Native American, war veteran, who
knows how to make the girls sigh, and comes back to his father’s ranch looking to
have fun and help out with the farm. Everyone thinks Joe is the greatest thing since
a slice of bread, except for a few that has him figured out. Unfortunately,
everywhere Joe goes trouble seems to follow; he also manages to come up with some
idea to make the situation better, but it usually leaves someone irritated and mad.
Most people get fed up with Joe, hence the title of the book “Stay Away, Joe”.

I loved the book. I started it and finished it in one day. I could not put it down. I
was always wondering what Joe was going to do next. It was a very good read. It is
simple but it has a great story behind it. There are so many different characters in
the book and you get to build a relationship with all of them. You want to help them
with their problems but you cannot, which is unfortunate. Cushman does an excellent
job of keeping you on the edge of your seat. He sets up the plot so that you have no
idea what is going to happen. The best characteristic of this book is that it is a
western style comedy. I personally love western comedies. There were multiple times
in the book when I actually laughed out loud. I would recommend this book to anyone
who is looking for some old school humor. You will not be disappointed with Stay
Away, Joe, because it is worth all 250 pages. I will give you one piece of advice;
if you are thinking about watching the movie Stay Away, Joe starring Elvis Presley
instead of reading the book, I would advise otherwise. The movie was horrible; it
did not live up to the greatness of the book. It was one of the worst movies I have
ever seen.

Reviewer: John Tremmel

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