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on June 30, 2003
After leaving his Crow reservation in Montana at age fifteen, Samson Hunts Alone changed his name to become Sam Hunter, a "hardworking, intelligent, and even likable" (p. 15) Santa Barbara insurance salesman with a Mercedes, a townhouse, and a "steady, level, and safe" life (p.16). Although his yuppie lifestyle seems perfect on the surface, Sam suffers from "Coyote Blue," the constant fear that something might go wrong to upset his "world of one" (p. 117). After meeting Calliope Kincaid, a free-spirited woman with the power to inspire men "to art and madness" (p. 64), and a mysterious, shape-shifting Indian (none other than Old Man Coyote) shortly after his thirty-fifth birthday, Sam nearly loses everything--his Mercedes, his money, his career, and his condo, only to discover himself in the chaos of his new life.
Filled with unforgetable scenes such as a coyote humping a leather sofa "like a furry jackhammer" (p. 50), Moore's second novel, COYOTE BLUE, is a quirky, entertaining novel, that will leave you howling with laughter.
G. Merritt
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on August 29, 2000
The author's challenge is to get us to read a story that has been written countless times before. Is the public ready for yet another novel about someone's not-so-carefully hidden past catching up with him? Why not invoke the Trickster of Native American legend? Let's see: A little shape-changing here, a few jokes there. Throw in some buckskin, and PRESTO! A brand new novel that everyone loves.
This Coyote, though, seems strangely attached to his human cohort. Moore paints a Trickster bent on leaving a wake of legend behind in the human world. He lives in the stories people tell.
Perhaps we're seeing a little of Moore's own philosophy here, leaving his own footprints on humanity's tapestry of lies. Or maybe behind everything else, Coyote himself has enticed Moore to write, because he truly does need his stories told, and only people can tell them. In that case the joke's on us.
Coyote, in true form, comes off as a parody of himself. No matter. If the Trickster wants to swindle and beguile a little reverence away from us, then so be it. If we can laugh a little on our short drive from womb to tomb, so much the better. If you're gonna make the trip, may as well take the big blue car.
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on August 1, 2000
Amazon.com has been recommending Coyote Blue to me for some time now, presumably due to my generally high ratings for Tom Robbins. This book is sort of a Robbins-Lite. We've got an enjoyable puree of natural and supernatural, without Robbins' mastery of the metaphor. Now, Moore's writing is clever and funny, but Robbins' makes me smile at least once per page.
In Coyote Blue we get a man facing up to his past (at the insistence of an ancient Native American god) and falling in real love for the first time. The best bits were the Native American myths told from a 20th Century point of view. The worst bits came at the end of the book. I won't give it away, but I will say that it's too much deus ex machina, even for a book about gods. Everything up to that point had made sense in its own way, but this was too much.
I will read more Moore, but I won't expect brilliance - just fun.
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on November 25, 2000
Christopher Moore has a knack for combining humor, horror and heart in varying but always synergistic proportions. In this, what I consider his best book, the humor and heart tend to dominate. You'll learn about modern Native American life, get a peek into the secrets of the insurance industry, and remember what it was like to fall in love for the first time. Sam Hunter, an insurance salesman running away from a horrible but justified crime he committed in his youth, is chased down by Coyote, a common Native American folklore figure. He seems to ruin Sam's life, but the plot twists and turns several times before the big finish. Moore takes a few swipes at bikers, druggies, and Southern California in general before it's all over. You'll laugh out loud, alright, but you may wipe a few tears away too.
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on May 17, 2003
Coyote Blue is the first novel of Christopher Moore's I have read, and it is easy to see why he is so popular. The whole book is a crazy, zany, wild ride for the reader and main character alike, and ultimately reaches a higher quality that transcends the goofiness. Moore presents a completely hilarious character, the Crow god Coyote. Coyote and a number of Crow legends (I have no idea how historically accurate they might be) are always invoked in significant ways in the story, however, and force thoughtfulness and serious consideration on the reader. In other words, I was laughing as much as I ever have with a book, while at the same time mulling over some serious issues about life in general. Coyote Blue is a wonderful book!
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on March 10, 2004
Coyote Blue is laugh-out-loud hilarious. As Moore warns in the pronunciation guide, don't try reading this in public. With each book of Moore's, I become more amazed at his ability to be obscenely funny and satirical, yet somehow respectful to the deepest truths underlying the story.
The characters in this book are a little thinner than usual, but that may be due to so many of the characters being attributes in human form. The minor characters like Adeline Eats were very well portrayed. The storyline seemed a little jumpier to me than usual also, with major shifts in time and place, but that may be because I was reading so fast, since Moore's books always pull you along like a crazy amusement park ride.
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on June 12, 2001
Cayote Blue was a book my freind was given as a birthday gift she never read. I won't have either if a week long case of the flue hadn't left me in need of a good book. Thank god it did, though because what a wonderful book.
While I have read other Moore books after this, whose plots have been better woven, I still pick up Coyote Blue when I want a laugh. The plot is improbable (becuase anceint gods don't ususally just show up) and the characters crazy (who names their child Grubb?) but if you have the imagination to look past the insane characters and accept the story, be prepared for a fun crazy ride. It'll be a good time. I highly recomend this book.
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on January 7, 2002
Moore does an excellent job of blending the legend of Coyote, Crow history and folklore, and reservation life into this funny and lighthearted tale about Sam Hunter, who runs away from his Indian heritage and invents a new life for himself until Coyote, the Indian God trickster shows up to wreak havoc on his life, putting into action a series of events that cause Sam to face his past.
The story moves fast and I enjoyed the writing style. I read The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove, and this book is MUCH better.
Well worth reading.
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Moore has written another interesting story. This book isn't as funny and bizarre as some of his others. But, once you get into the story line you will find yourself intrigued by the Crow life. This story revolves around a character named Sam, who is a Crow Indian. The story develops with the coyote god coming into Sam's life at the same time as a breath taking woman. His life is turned upside down and the plot just thickens. A great read that will keep you guessing.
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on October 5, 1999
Coyote, all instinct and nerve, is that mystical voice we sometimes hear, but often ignore. Moore's ability to shape a story is very impressive and while comparisons to Tom Robbins are easy, it is Moore's smooth plot transitions that make him seem, to me, a more agile writer. I was only recently introduced to Christopher Moore...what a fortunate discovery.
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