"Who was that masked man?" Good guys had white hats and bad guys wore black. The Saturday afternoon matinees of the 1940's were the inspiration for my love affair with cowboys and Indians. Sure there were occasional dull moments when Roy or Gene lapsed into song or kissed the school "marm", something that even the "Duke" did occasionally. However, there was always enough action to satisfy me while I tried to get the Jujubes unstuck from my rear molars.

Although there were no cows in Brooklyn and precious few horses (except those pulling junk wagons), there were other images of the Wild West that fed my imagination. My Dad was an avid reader of pulp westerns. I read and reread his discarded magazines and paperback books. I will never forget the thrill I experienced when I first read "The Virginians" immortal line, "When you call me that, smile!"

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, my post pubescent dreams were realized when I earned a photographer's membership to the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association. That allowed me to photograph the action from inside the rodeo arena as well as having access to the cowboys and cowgirls behind the scenes. All of this while wearing a cowboy hat and pointy boots.

These Zane Grey covers are my homage to Hoot Gibson, Buck Jones, Ken Maynard and Bob Steele, as well as those anonymous journeyman illustrators who decorated the book covers of my past.