Mixed Grazing

A Collection of Short Stories

Fiction - Anthology
107 Pages
Reviewed on 08/29/2022
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Author Biography

A Canadian writer, Chad Strong grew up horseback riding and hiking in the forested hills of the countryside surrounding Victoria, BC.

He enjoys reading fiction and non-fiction of all sorts, from westerns to fantasies, from adventures to history. His writing has followed suit across multiple genres and his works have appeared in publications including Bards & Sages Quarterly, Mysterical-E, Rawhide’n Roses - a Western Anthology, and Frontier Tales.

His first novel, High Stakes, is a western historical romance set in Victoria, BC, and made the finals for two distinct awards: Best First Western Novel of 2012 in the Western Fictioneers Peacemaker Awards, and in the American Historical category of the RONE Awards.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite

Mixed Grazing by Chad Strong is a collection of eight short stories, covering multiple genres. Blue Sky and Gray Smoke tells the story of two soldiers on opposite sides – one union, one confederate. What do they do now? In The Crossing, Rick Barton is on the run to Canada with his loot. How long can he run for? Young Will is The Tracker, on the hunt for his father’s killer, searching for retribution, while Detective Tom Mallory must decide how to stop the man who killed his brother in The Deadlock. In the Churchyard Incident, there’s a new kid in town but he’s not all he seems to be. Dale has grown up and returns home where he meets an old friend, The Camas Fairy, while in Stable Hands, Stable Hearts, Scott is set to win a trophy at the final horse show of the year when he spots the girl who has his heart – can he win both? Finally, Jen has to decide whether to make The Decision when Phoenix, her horse grows old. Eight stories that will thrill and excite you, leave your hair standing on end and send shivers down your spine.

Mixed Grazing by Chad Strong is a great collection of stories, each totally different from the last. This is a real mix of genres – historical, western, romance, supernatural, and more. There is a little violence and strong language but nothing that doesn’t fit with the stories. Each story is complete – I always think it is quite difficult to write a short story as you have to cram so much into a short space but Strong has achieved this admirably, not once, but eight times in one book. Every story is well crafted with a proper ending that wraps it up neatly, and each has its unique characters and plot. Every character is expertly developed and we learn so much about them in just a few pages. It’s safe to say that you will not predict the ending of any of these stories. They will all come as a surprise, which is great because most short stories are predictable. A lovely collection, I thoroughly enjoyed reading every story.

Big Al

As the description indicates, this collection has a wide range of stories in different genres from western to fantasy and supernatural. My favorite was probably the closing story, a contemporary fiction tale called “The Decision,” about a young woman faced with a life or death decision. But all the stories are solid efforts, the biggest difference in how a reader will like each being genre preference rather than quality of the story.

-- Big Al
**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy. **


I found this series to be quite interesting. Each story reads well, and had its own unpredictable conclusion. I have seen other stories that were well written, but 'end', leaving the reader still 'wanting'.
I am not normally into shorts stories, however, the author' name caught my attention in this case, as I had previously read his 'High Stakes'. I decided to 'dig in'.

Recommended reading - I find this author an interesting one to follow.

-- Chic


Also, longtime friend. well done!

-- RLJ