This is one of the best books I have read in years. I couldn’t put it down. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a glimpse into the life and character of a true cowboy. PeeWee Mercer has always been the hero to many a little bull rider in Florida. Once you read his book you will see why so many of us consider him our hero. This is an excellent book written by a wonderful guy.
~Anonymous (Barnes and Noble)
It is the true story of a young man’s life and the unfortunate turn it took.
This story takes the reader on a personal journey with former bull riding champion Glen “Pee Wee” Mercer, who on November 11, 1995, at the age of 25, suffered an accident while dismounting a bull at the Southeastern Circuit Final at Brighton, Florida. This resulted in a broken neck and severed spinal cord, thus changing his life forever. The Last Ride is the dramatic story of his life both before and after the accident.
Patrick Smith met Mercer following a speaking engagement for the Friends of the Library in Williston, where Mercer lived. The two struck up a bond of friendship. Mercer was unable to write but had a colorful life’s story to tell. Smith agreed to help Mercer share his story and so they collaborated on the book. The result seven months later was publication of The Last Ride.
Although this book covers Pee Wee’s rodeo career throughout Florida and many other parts of the United States, it is not just a book about rodeo. It is also the story of young love gone awry, of adventure, high humor, youthful exuberance during those years when people think they are indestructible, of hopes and dreams of the future and how those hopes and dreams are shattered forever in just one split second of time. It is Pee Wee’s story, but told with Smith’s masterful writing skill.
This is also a heartfelt story of courage, of the determination to endure in a world few others can even imagine. Sometimes it is a very lonely world indeed, one peopled only with memories.
Smith said that “Working with Pee Wee on this book has been one of the most gratifying experiences of my lifetime. Sometimes the greatest gift you can receive in life is helping someone less fortunate than yourself. I will always remember with pleasure the road Pee Wee and I have traveled together.” Smith went on to describe Pee Wee as a “Profile in Courage.”
The Last Ride will grip the interest and emotions of all readers, young and old alike. It is much like taking a literary rafting trip down a turbulent mountain stream. You will become part of the action and will be there every step of the way.
I am certain you will enjoy this book. It deserves a place in the collection of all Patrick Smith fans.
The Last Ride is hardbound, 27 photos, 183 pages. $18.00
We’ve taken some of Pee Wee’s own words to dramatize this scene.
This is a great, true story of a wonderful person and his life of rodeo…….. and more!
~Anonymous (Barnes and Noble)
I met Pee Wee Mercer when I was a senior in high school and we became very good friends and we traveled the high school rodeo circuit in 1985. Only living 10 miles from each other, we did a lot of things that year. I went on and served my country, while my partner continued with the rodeo circuit.
This book was such an excellent story of a great bullrider and a wonderful person. Rodeo is a tough life and there’s many bruises and broken bones along the way and when you start reading it, you discover what it takes to be a professional bullrider. I went to the hospital just after the accident and as I looked at my little buddy, I just couldn’t imagen what the future held for him, but I can say that he’s taken something awful and has done what few people could even dream about. Thanks for all the memories and the stories, will be looking forward to another book soon.
I loved this book. It was one of the only books I have read with such a real life country setting. Not only was this guy a wonderful bullrider but was and is a good person at heart. Being raised around cattle and horses made for a great start for a bullrider. I think this book is very enlightening to the life of a bullrider and how hard they work to become what they are. It takes a very special person to climb on the back of a bull, and try to hang on for 8 seconds. They are faced with life and death everytime they nod their head and come out of those chutes.
I couldn’t put this book down. I would recommend this to anyone. Please take the time to read this book and you will soon appreciate the courage these guys have in taking on a bull.
PeeWee Mercer took me on a wild ride in his “Last Ride.” He had me on so many bulls he wore my pants out. If you ever dreamed about what it is like to be a professional bullrider, Pee Wee tells it like it is, with all the glamour and romance washed out. You will ride around the circuit racing from city to city for the opportunity to get up on that next bull. The pay stinks, and there is a lot of pain, but for Pee Wee it is the life to which he was born.
Pee Wee’s last ride is the hook that pulls you into his story. Can you imagine the world in which he found himself after breaking his spinal cord that fateful evening in 1995 when he rode his last bull? His life today is the “hardest” bull he has ever had to ride, yet he continues on with guts and a faith that is an inspiration to all.
This was a funny, touching true life story that I couldn’t put down! Definitely a great book for anyone, whether you like rodeo or not.
The night my book arrived I burnt supper because I couldn’t put it down. I found myself up at 2 am reading it. I laughed, I cried and I laughed so hard that I cried reading the stories and remembering the people and places from this book.
PeeWee, you did a wonderful job, I am so very proud of you. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a look into the life and character of a cowboy!! Hurry up and write us another one!!