Hank the Cowdog by John R. Erickson

It took me a while, but the more I wrote stories the more I realized I had a love for mystery.

I grew up writing all different kinds of genres. I started writing fan fiction and my first completed novel was romance-ish. The reason for the “ish” at the end of “romance” is a story for another time.

I’ve come up with fantasy ideas inspired by The Lord of the Rings as well as superhero-fantasy inspired by X-Men. I’ve written general fiction, Christian fiction, and a mainstream romance. I’ve tried my hand at script-writing as well as poetry and children’s picture books.

It wasn’t until I thought of the idea of George Florence that I realized I was so into mysteries. What made me want to write a mystery novel was because of the video game Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney.

Though I recently realized that my love for mysteries go way back to when I was much younger.

Someone asked what I used to enjoy reading as a kid and my first instinct was Hank the Cowdog by John R. Erickson.

Hank the Cowdog
Via HanktheCowdog.com

It’s a children’s chapter book series that’s very long. Though, if memory serves, you didn’t have to read the books in order. Each book was a different series with the same characters.

Hank was a dog who solved mysteries with his sidekick, Drover. If I remember him correctly, he was a bit of a coward and preferred to stay out of trouble.

I remember getting the audio books from the library and my sister and I, since we shared a room, would put the tape on during bedtime. We would listen to it in our beds in the dark. When it was time to flip the tape over (because cassette tapes were a thing back then…) we would go to sleep and listen to the next side the following night. Then it was back to the library to get the next book.

I had a few of the books in the series. I think I had books one through nine and then number 36 or something like that. There are 66 books total so I didn’t even make a dent in the series. Though I do still have the books in a storage space by my bed.

It’s a series I’ll never forget and I plan to buy them all someday for my own children to read and enjoy.

14 thoughts on “Hank the Cowdog by John R. Erickson

  1. Wowsa! Kids books amaze me. How do you keep a series going that long?!? I mean, come on! Magic Tree House, Junie B. Jones, Babysitters Club, Nancy Drew, and Hardy Boys? Just to name a few. They had many, many, many books and none of them ever seemed boring. Mystery or no.

    • Yeah, that’s a good point! I don’t know… There must be something about them that attracted the kids as well as the parents.
      Though, if I re-read Hank the Cowdog now, it would definitely be too young for me, but I think I would still enjoy it.

        • It’s fun to read those kinds of books. Sometimes I’ll go to the kids section of my bookstore and read some picture books. They have a few good ones out lately.

  2. I love your inspiration! I loved Phoenix Wright and of course I’m a sucker for fantasy and superheroes so it’s great to see that come together into your George Florence novel.

    I’ve tried to write a mystery before, I don’t remember how well it went haha. Glad to see that love manifest into your writing.

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