Authentically western, hilariously existential

First published in 1999, The Cowboy and the Vampire Collection was the leading edge of the vampire resurgence in the modern era, helping to launch and shape a new paranormal genre: gothic western. Now, the award-winning cult-classic #horror series is back—bloodier and bolder than ever.

Let 'er buck. 

Saddle up for a hilarious, sexy, existential gallop through the modern American west with an army of ancient bloodsuckers in hot pursuit.

“Deliciously dark.”


“Pour yourself a shot of the good stuff and settle in for a wickedly good read. The Cowboy and the Vampire is sexy, funny, scary, and it will get your heart jumping like a pickup truck on an old county road. 

East Oregonian

Welcome to LonePine, Wyoming, population 438, where the best of the west faces off against the rise of the undead. It's a love story for the ages when a broke cowboy and a glamorous big city reporter fall head over boot heels in love.

But she carries a 2000-year-old secret in her veins that will test their unusual romance to the very edge of death, and beyond. Grab the reins and hold on tight as Tucker and Lizzie stampede across rural America and through the vampire afterlife, desperate to protect their unlikely love from lust, betrayal and bad country music. Can there be a happy ever after for a cowboy and a vampire or is their love a delusion?

Read an interview with the authors by Kirkus Reviews

The first edition of the first book in the series was published by Llewellyn Worldwide in 1999. Responding to strong reader feedback and sales, a second edition was released in 2010 by Midnight Ink (an imprint of Llewelyn), as reported by The Oregonian. The three subsequent books in the series are part of the indie Pumpjack Press catalog and have received multiple awards, including being named to the Kirkus Reviews 2014 Best Books List.   

The Cowboy and the Vampire Collection includes four books (which can be purchased as a collection or individually):

  • A Very Unusual Romance

  • Blood and Whiskey

  • Rough Trails and Shallow Graves

  • The Last Sunset

A rollicking ride, passionate, powerfully compelling. A gripping story line that’s unpredictable and hard to put down.”

Midwest Book Review

Rawhide romance with bloody fangs. While mashing up all the stereotypical plot elements of paranormal vampire and contemporary western romance, The Cowboy and the Vampire delivers unremitting fun and a damn good read.”

Fresh Fiction

Love and blood in the modern West. The Cowboy and the Vampire is a thrilling page-turner…an outstandingly entertaining series. Existentialist underpinnings give the series depth, but the book is first and foremost a thriller, upping the ante in every chapter as bullets fly and relationships strain under the weight of old loyalties and new revelations. Riveting.”

Kirkus Reviews

The Cowboy and the Vampire was a KIrkus Best Book of 2014

Named to Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2014 list, honored as among the best books of 2016 by IndieReader, named a 2017 Foreword Reviews Indie finalist and recipient of a 2017 Silver IPPY Medal for #Horror.  

“A terrific, original piece of vampire lore. The characters—even the secondary ones—are all so rich and multi-layered, it’s hard not to get involved with them and care about their fates. Even Rex the dog has a distinct personality that makes him an essential member of the ensemble.” Bloodthirsty Muses

Go ahead. You’re trying not to laugh at the title. Let it out! It’s funny and so is the book. Get a few pages into The Cowboy and The Vampire and you’ll be laughing with them, not at them. There is grief, loss, and pain on a human and inhuman scale, but there is so much more. The humor in The Cowboy and The Vampire is sly and adult. And, perhaps best of all, the characters are complex and unpredictable. Each creature is an individual, not a type, not a tin soldier to be moved around without thought.” SF Site Featured Review

"More than a romance and breaking the stereotypes of both cowboys and vampires, this is a must-read if you enjoy unique fiction and fast-paced plots. Top Pick! Five stars! And also nominated for the Novel of the Year Award." Underground Book Reviews

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For Booksellers and Librarians—Pumpjack Press titles are available through Ingram Content Group

Just West of Hell

Early Hardiman, once one of the deadliest gunslingers in the West, needed two things when he rode into LonePine—a place to spend the night and revenge.  

An old-West prequel to The Cowboy and the Vampire Collection

In the waning decades of the 19th century, LonePine faced an uncertain future. The gold mine was played out, the big ranches were barely scraping by — usually on the remnants of the little ones — and the long, brutal winters meant restless dreamers and entrepreneurs passed right by on their way to California. At first glance, Early saw only a ramshackle outpost of losers and lunatics deep in Wyoming Territory. But then he stepped into the decaying Pearl, the classiest brothel west of St. Louis, where he met Grace. Nothing would ever be the same again.

Soon enough, Early was wearing the sheriff’s badge and doing his damndest to protect Grace and the residents of LonePine. Early was fine with drunk miners, rowdy cowhands and thieving rustlers, but he didn’t know he’d also be up against the undead, zombies and snake oil peddlers.

What Amazon readers are saying:

"Clark Hays is the up and coming Stephen King! Man spins a hell of yarn! I will read everything he writes."

"When I picked up Just West of Hell I thought that it might be a fun book to read. Boy, was I surprised! It was not only fun but written extremely well. Early and his gal are two of my favorite people. The relationship between the two makes for a terrific book alone. Then when you throw in the supernatural aspects it only magnifies the enjoyment. I am usually not one for zombie stories but this was presented in such a logical way it wrapped me up into the tale. Clark Hays is a wonderful story teller and I look forward to the next book."