Amarillo: The Story of a Western Town Paul H. Carlson, Texas Tech University Press, $28.95, Hardcover; 800-832-4042.

amarilloDon’t be misled by the cover. While clever, it gives a sort of “wish you were here” feeling. Once inside the book, though, the Texan city of Amarillo unfolds in an easy, home porch discussion of the history.

This book packs it all in, from the city’s agricultural beginnings in the 1880s up to its status as the second largest city on the Texas High Plains in 2005. Readers of this magazine will be most interested in the Texas Tech history professor’s discussions of the Western Expansion following the war with Mexico, the founding of the city, along with its industrial economic development and how the route of Route 66 transformed this “Queen City of the Texas Panhandle.” Amarillo offers local history at its best. —Linda Wommack

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