Monday, February 8, 2010

Hunter's Moon by Don Hoesel

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Hunter's Moon

Bethany House (February 1, 2010)


Don Hoesel

(My thoughts at the end)


Don Hoesel was born and raised in Buffalo, NY but calls Spring Hill, TN home. He works as a Communications Department supervisor for a Medicare carrier in Nashville, TN. He has a BA in Mass Communication from Taylor University and has published short fiction in Relief Journal.

Don and hopes to one day sell enough books to just say that he's a writer. You can help with that by buying whatever his newest novel happens to be.

He lives in Spring Hill with his wife and two children.


Every family has secrets. Few will go as far as the Baxters to keep them. Bestselling novelist CJ Baxter has made a career out of writing hard-hitting stories ripped from his own life. Still there's one story from his past he's never told. One secret that's remained buried for decades. Now, seventeen years after swearing he'd never return, CJ is headed back to Adelia, NY. His life in Tennessee has fallen to pieces, his grandfather is dying, and CJ can no longer run from the past. With Graham Baxter, CJ's brother, running for Senate, a black sheep digging up old family secrets is the last thing the family and campaign can afford. CJ soon discovers that blood may be thicker than water, but it's no match for power and money. There are wounds even time cannot heal.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Hunter's Moon, go HERE

My thoughts:

This book really sounded good - and looked good. I loved thc cover. I was disappointed in the book, however. First, the main character. I was a good ways into the book before I discovered that unfortunately he was a Christian. He assaulted a book critic with a book, broke into his estranged wife's house, then fled to his hometown to avoid arrest warants. He cursed - a lot, though none of the words were printed - he drank - a lot - hung around at the bar, drinking enough on at least one occasion to not drive, and gambled regularly - poker for money. And seemed to hang around his former girlfriend - now marrried - too much.

There wasn't a redemptive element in the book. The main charater's family was bizarre and had weird behaviors. CJ (main character) seemed to stir up trouble everywhere he went, and acted far from what a Christian should.

I thought the book was suspense, but there was none until the very end.

I have read books where the main character was "flawed" in some way, but if they had sinful behaviors, they worked on them and it was not portrayed as normal for a Christian - but this book, though fiction, paints a pathetic portrayal of a Christian - and I have to say that is my main disappointment in the book. For being Christian fiction, it was very weak in the Christianity it portrayed. Not a book I would recommend.


Don said...

Hi Mark. Thanks for taking the time to read and review my book. I appreciate even the critical comments - gives me something to work on.

Just my thoughts, though, on how flawed CJ is in the book. I think the chief consideration is that he is a brand new Christian (emphasis on the new) and still struggling with what that means: how that works out in the life of a 37 year old man with the kind of family history he has, and what has always been "normal" for him.

What I didn't want to do is portray a conversion experience in which God snaps His fingers and all of a sudden CJ is cured of all his ills. That, to me, cheapens the process of santification. That said, I hope that it was evident at the end of the book that CJ took a huge step in that process.


LuAnn said...

I can understand both points of view, but I do have to agree with Mark that there is a limit to how much even a "new" Christian can still carry. OK, so maybe one or two vices can remain and continue to be worked on, but it sounds like this man needs to try just a bit harder to give up his bad habits. I'm not sure what the timeline is in this book as I haven't read it yet, but it seems to me a person can't take years to get at least some issues under control and continue to say they are a Christian. The word in that case would be "hypocrite."