REVIEWS: BIGFOOT HUNTERS NEVER LIE
Published by Kate Thompson,
REVIEWS: BIGFOOT HUNTERS NEVER LIE
A novel by Kate E Thompson
Review by Annalece Hunter
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie
"We have an oath." She pulls me into a tight hug and for the first time in hours, I feel like I’m going to be okay."
"Bigfoot Hunters forever," I say the same time she does.
This is a clip of dialogue from my friend, Seattle author, Kate E. Thompson’s book, Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie. It’s between the protagonist, Noah, and his childhood best friend, Charlee, who comes to his aid during his time of need, and together they set out to put his life back in order.
During their youth they’d made a pack–The Bigfoot Code. And when Noah finds himself in the middle of tough year, a mid-life crisis of sorts, being pulled in one direction by family and community expectations vs. what he wants, The Bigfoot Code formed in childhood essentially becomes his guiding force.
This thread, this theme of friendship, is what endeared me to this book.
Do you have someone in your life, who you are 100% confident will answer your call if you ring them at 2:00 am?
This is the relationship between Noah and Charlee, and is an area where Kate really shines: the friendship between these two is so convincing and refreshing.
We need people like this; people who have our best interest at heart, who are there when we need them, no matter what; people who will drive to the ends of the world to be with us.
But it’s also a story about forgiving and forgetting, a spiritual awakening, and the meaning of family.
A quick synopsis:
Noah Cathcart is Associate Pastor of his father’s church and is married to Grace "the pinup Girl of Pastors’ wives" (love this description, Kate). Everything is going to plan. They have an eight-year-old son, a chihuaha with three legs, and a mortgage.
Until…one morning Noah is awakened by his estranged brother, Anthony, who asks if he will help a friend, "Secret Agent" Mel, move into a shelter before he gets arrested.
Noah agrees, goes to the camp, and in the chaos of the bust, finds himself arrested. However, later, he discovers he can’t get his mind off some of the characters he met at the camp, not only Secret Agent Mel, but also the accordion player he met in the police van, and the little girl wandering through the homeless camp in her panda bear slippers.
In addition, things are not going well for Noah at church, or at home. So when Anthony asks for another favor, this one could seriously endanger Noah’s career, as well as his relationship with his father.
The novel asks the question: Will it take a tragic event to give Noah the courage to risk his plan and find out who he is, what he wants in life, and what it takes to be a father, a husband, a brother, a son, and a pastor?
But be warned. This book is a page turner. Kate’s effortless writing flows and draws you into the story; you’re going to want to keep the pages turning so you can find out what’s going to happen next.
Finally, Kate really excels at creating powerful characters. They are flawed, flawed, flawed, often acting horribly. Furthermore, she is an emotive writer, exploring, through her characters, the full range of human emotions.
Click on the link and buy this book. You’ll love it! Also, you may wish to visit her website: www.kateethompson.com where you can read more about her upcoming second novel: A Family of Forgetters, which is a story about Annie, a Danish Immigrant, and is set in Salt Lake City during the 19th century. It’s a story of courage, loss, family bonds, and growing up in a country that doesn’t feel like home
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie, a novel by Kate E Thompson
5.0 out of 5 stars
Big Foot Hunters is a Must Read!
July 31, 2019
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
A great story about the struggles many face when trying to figure out one’s calling and faith. The main character, Noah is conflicted with the pull between the wishes of his wife and his father (a pastor of a fire and brimstone congregation) and his work with his street ministry. Everyone has expectations of Noah which causes issues in his marriage, his ministry, and the community. The only semblance of normalcy comes from his childhood best friend (the co-creator of the Big Foot Code). The struggles Noah faces are very relatable. His wife cheating is not a surprise as her character doesn’t have many true redeeming qualities. She’s against Noah helping the needy and homeless, but wants to be seen as the perfect and dutiful wife of a pastor. Ultimately, the problems in the marriage spillover into their home life and their son runs away. Noah’s issues extend outside of his home, and when dealing with the community’s street ministry, he gets into legal trouble. Trying to do the right thing for everyone is his dilemma. Being all things to all people means no one’s expectations are truly met.
Kate Thompson does an excellent job giving us characters with flaws, ethical as well as spiritual challenges. Making the right choice and being able to distinguish if it’s God’s will or others is something we all face and question.
A well-told and enjoyable story. I look forward to reading more from this talented writer.
5.0 out of 5 stars
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie - A great read!
June 22, 2019
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
I immediately liked this book. Pastor Noah is such a realistic and relatable character. I think we've all known a person like this and have witnessed their inner conflicts. The author does a brilliant job showing the struggles with faith and how this plays out in people's lives.
4.0 out of 5 stars
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie - True to Life Characters
December 11, 2015
Format: Kindle Edition
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie is a great novel about a man who is living life, and life can be a pretty dramatic experience if you really find yourself in the throes of it. That's what Noah does-- he finds himself in the middle of a really, really tough year, and we get to take his path with him to find out what exactly a Pastor does when he finds himself struggling with his faith, his family, and with what he thinks is wrong and right.
My favorite thing about this book is that Pastor Noah is at the forefront of it and religion is a huge part of his life, but I never felt like I was being preached at. I'm not a religious person in the least, but I really enjoyed watching how Noah navigated his struggle with what God wanted from him and what he wanted from himself, in addition to what his family and the community all expected from him. I think it's an extraordinary feat to keep someone who isn't interested in religion intrigued in the lives of people who are so focused on it, but Kate Thompson did it flawlessly. I felt hungry for this novel once I got into it-- I was dying to find out what was happening with everyone.
Another of my favorite things was that I didn't really like any of the characters. And I know that sounds like a negative thing, but I think for people, for all of us, when we're thrown into situations that bring out our struggles and our flaws, we aren't always likeable, and I felt that way about most of the characters here. They do things that are not admirable and react in ways that aren't honorable-- and that's a true testament to writing a real person. I know I certainly don't behave favorably all the time either, and especially when times are as trying as the experiences Noah and his comrades are experiencing in a world where profit is more important than spreading God's word, and appearances are more important than truly doing things that make your heart happy.
Overall, I'll give Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie a solid 4.5/5 butterflies. I recommend it to anyone who's interested in reading about, well. Pretty much anything. There's not a lot better than being able to be intrigued by another human's experience. '
Brett A Dent
3.0 out of 5 stars
Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie - A touching story with a theme that resonates with most
March 24, 2015
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
In Kate E. Thompson’s debut novel, "Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie," Pastor Noah Cathcart struggles to find happiness while doing everything he believes God wants him to do. I enjoyed the story, for the most part, but did have a few problems with the style, which I’ll explain later.
"Bigfoot Hunters" is a typical mid-life crisis story, despite it happening at a relatively early age for Noah. He’s thirty-five with a young son and a beautiful, Pastor-perfect wife, and stands to "inherit the kingdom," so to speak, from his father – the heavy-handed evangelical head of the Rolling River Church. Throughout the novel, author Thompson does a nice job of pulling the reader down into Noah’s conflicted sense of self, trying to do what he believes is right against what his wife and father tell him God is calling him for. Noah’s desire to preach to and help the unfortunate through a message of Christ’s love and compassion for all is at grave odds with his father, who preaches fire-and-brimstone, and his wife, Grace, who has no room in her heart for the dirty, drug-addicted homeless.
Every relationship he has outside of his father’s and wife’s plan for him pits him against the will of the Rolling River congregation. His best friend, Charlee – with whom he developed the Bigfoot Hunters code when they were children, which becomes Noah’s guiding principles toward the end – is either atheist or a non-practicing Christian. His brother Anthony is homosexual and wants Noah to marry him and his partner. The various characters of his street ministry demand his time and attention and end up getting him in trouble with the law on more than one occasion. All of these conflicts continue to eat away at Noah and drive him and his wife apart throughout the story, which ultimately drives the novel to the climax; Noah’s eight-year-old son, Gabe, runs away one stormy morning because mom and dad are always fighting.
Noah’s struggles generally resonate true and are easily applicable to most people’s lives. He is a relatable character. We’ve all had to deal with well-meaning family and friends constantly pulling us in the direction they want regardless of how we want to live our own lives. His seeming complacency – he barely ever puts up a fight – masks a depression that is eating him up. "Bigfoot Hunters" is definitely an engaging story, and Thompson takes us through the whole range of emotions. Happiness when Noah is happy with his street ministry, sad when it all falls apart, frustrated that he can’t catch a break from his own family who claim to be Christians. Noah struggles with his faith far more than you might think a Pastor should, yet he’s the only one in his God-fearing family actually trying to live by the Gospel. All of these themes should resonate with any average person.
I loved the relationship between Charlee and Noah. Thompson seems to really understand how to write two best friends. It’s believable and satisfying. Unfortunately, all of the other characters were a bit thin and predictable, and with them went the plot. To be clear, it was a page turner sometimes and I liked it, but I never had any doubt as to how everything would play out. That comes from the light character development. One line of description of Noah’s and Grace’s marriage and I knew where things were going. For example – technically, this isn’t a spoiler, but you’ll figure it out – Grace is on a committee where she has to have all day meetings and nights and weekends with a wealthy real-estate mogul. This is in chapter two, near the very beginning. Can you guess what happens?
Really, though, the biggest problem I had with this novel was that it was written in first person present. I wish this trend would stop. It can be done, but out of the hands of a literary master it never brings the reader fully into the story. One of the joys of reading is putting yourself in the shoes of the main character, or multiple characters when the point of view changes. With the present tense it is impossible, because while the author says "I am putting the dishes away," you’re thinking, "No, I am reading a book." If you told me I put the dishes away yesterday, then I’m a believer. In this case, it sometimes made for choppy dialog, and often read like a draft. The more I thought about it, the more I believed that every part would have been better in the past tense. Better flow, better connection with the character.
Another problem I think this style caused was some time flow problems. Present tense sometimes doesn’t lend an opening for descriptive narrative, and many times I had trouble figuring out when things were happening. Things that I thought were at night were actually in the morning, and scene transitions that should have been the next day were several months later. It was confusing.
"Bigfoot Hunters Never Lie" is a touching story, and I did enjoy it. I think anybody that is torn between what they want and what others want from them will find something here that makes them root for the good guy. While the writing style wasn’t so enjoyable for me, the story itself kept me engaged enough that I can easily say, "I liked it."
by Kate E. Thompson (Goodreads Author)