Coyote Blue

( 115 )

Overview

From Christopher Moore, author of Fluke, comes a quirky, irreverent novel of love, myth, metaphysics, outlaw biking, angst, and outrageous redemption.

As a boy growing up in Montana, he was Samson Hunts Alone — until a deadly misunderstanding with the law forced him to flee the Crow reservation at age fifteen. Today he is Samuel Hunter, a successful Santa Barbara insurance salesman with a Mercedes, a condo, and a hollow, invented life. Then one day, shortly after his ...

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Overview

From Christopher Moore, author of Fluke, comes a quirky, irreverent novel of love, myth, metaphysics, outlaw biking, angst, and outrageous redemption.

As a boy growing up in Montana, he was Samson Hunts Alone — until a deadly misunderstanding with the law forced him to flee the Crow reservation at age fifteen. Today he is Samuel Hunter, a successful Santa Barbara insurance salesman with a Mercedes, a condo, and a hollow, invented life. Then one day, shortly after his thirty-fifth birthday, destiny offers him the dangerous gift of love — in the exquisite form of Calliope Kincaid — and a curse in the unheralded appearance of an ancient Indian god by the name of Coyote. Coyote, the trickster, has arrived to transform tranquillity into chaos, to reawaken the mystical storyteller within Sam ... and to seriously screw up his existence in the process.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Sam Hunter, the hero of Moore's raucous new novel, is the perfect insurance salesman: a complete chameleon who can be all things to all people, sizing up the ideal pitch to close any deal or make any woman. Living on the beach in Santa Barbara, Calif., Sam has all the accoutrements of the successful yuppie. His true identity--as Samson Hunts Alone, a full-blooded Crow Indian who fled his reservation and his heritage at age 15 after killing a policeman--is hidden and all but forgotten. Then one day, the Native American trickster figure Coyote enters Sam's life, with the apparent intention of destroying it piece by piece. Coyote's arrival coincides with Sam's involvement with Calliope Kincaid, an uneducated single mother whose hippie lifestyle is a throwback to the 1960s. When Calliope's biker ex-boyfriend kidnaps their baby, Coyote and Sam--against Sam's better judgment--set out in pursuit. The farther Sam travels from his life in the city, the closer he comes to finding himself. As in his previous novel, Practical De mon keep ing , Moore plays the supernatural and numinous for laughs, making even the most ludicrous events somehow believable with his breezy writing style. Only a consistent strain of misogyny mars this otherwise funny and entertaining romp. 50,000 first printing. Mar.
Library Journal
``There ain't no cure for Coyote Blue,'' writes Moore Practical Demonkeeping , LJ 1/92 to explain the mystifying and outrageous chain of events that alters Sam Hunter's life forever. As a teenager, Samson Hunts Alone runs away from the Crow Reservation to avoid standing trial for murder. Twenty years later he has changed his name, become a partner in a successful insurance agency, and all but forgotten his Indian upbringing. Coyote, an ancient Indian god known as a trickster by the Crow, is determined that it is time for Sam to fulfill his destiny as storyteller for his tribe. To that end, Coyote leads Sam on a merry chase--interfering in business, disturbing the neighbors, introducing love, and inciting a motorcycle gang to riot, all in a fantastic plot to lead Sam home. This novel is at once irreverent, spiritual, and wonderfully fresh in approach. An absolute must for adults and mature teens alike.-- Thomas L. Kilpatrick, Southern Illinois Univ. Lib., Carbondale
From the Publisher
"Downright laugh-out-loud, can't-put-the-book-down funny." —The Philadelphia Inquirer

"[A] whimsical fable of contemporary culture shock....Tautly written with a zest for the absurd and the unpredictable." — Jennifer Howard, The New York Times Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060735432
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/25/2004
  • Series: Harper Perennial Series
  • Pages: 299
  • Product dimensions: 5.36 (w) x 8.02 (h) x 0.73 (d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Moore

Christopher Moore is the author of thirteen previous novels, including Lamb, The Stupidest Angel, Fool, Sacré Bleu, and A Dirty Job. He lives in San Francisco, California.

Biography

A 100-year-old ex-seminarian and a demon set off together on a psychotic road trip...

Christ's wisecracking childhood pal is brought back from the dead to chronicle the Messiah's "missing years"...

A mild-mannered thrift shop owner takes a job harvesting souls for the Grim Reaper...

Whence come these wonderfully weird scenarios? From the fertile imagination of Christopher Moore, a cheerfully demented writer whose absurdist fiction has earned him comparisons to master satirists like Kurt Vonnegut, Terry Pratchett, and Douglas Adams.

Ever since his ingenious debut, 1992's Practical Demonkeeping, Moore has attracted an avid cult following. But, over the years, as his stories have become more multi-dimensional and his characters more morally complex, his fan base has expanded to include legions of enthusiastic general readers and appreciative critics.

Asked where his colorful characters come from, Moore points to his checkered job resume. Before becoming a writer, he worked at various times as a grocery clerk, an insurance broker, a waiter, a roofer, a photographer, and a DJ -- experiences he has mined for a veritable rogue's gallery of unforgettable fictional creations. Moreover, to the delight of hardcore fans, characters from one novel often resurface in another. For example, the lovesick teen vampires introduced in 1995's Bloodsucking Fiends are revived (literally) for the 2007 sequel You Suck -- which also incorporates plot points from 2006's A Dirty Job.

For a writer of satirical fantasy, Moore is a surprisingly scrupulous researcher. In pursuit of realistic details to ground his fiction, he has been known to immerse himself in marine biology, death rituals, Biblical scholarship, and Goth culture. He has been dubbed "the thinking man's Dave Barry" by none other than The Onion, a publication with a particular appreciation of smart humor.

As for story ideas, Moore elaborates on his website: "Usually [they come] from something I read. It could be a single sentence in a magazine article that kicks off a whole book. Ideas are cheap and easy. Telling a good story once you get an idea is hard." Perhaps. But, to judge from his continued presence on the bestseller lists, Chris Moore appears to have mastered the art.

Good To Know

In researching his wild tales, Moore has done everything from taking excursions to the South Pacific to diving with whales. So what is left for the author to tackle? He says he'd like to try riding an elephant.

One of the most memorably weird moments in Moore's body of work is no fictional invention. The scene in Bloodsucking Fiendswhere the late-night crew of a grocery store bowls with frozen turkeys is based on Moore's own experiences bowling with frozen turkeys while working the late shift at a grocery store.

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    1. Hometown:
      Hawaii and San Francisco, California
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 5, 1958
    2. Place of Birth:
      Toledo, Ohio

Introduction

Part love story, part vision quest, and always somewhat wacky, Coyote Blue tells the story of Sam Hunter — born Samson Hunts Alone on a Crow Indian Reservation, but who reinvents himself as a successful insurance broker, until he is hit with the lightning bolt of love that goes by the name of Calliope. However, as with all Christopher Moore novels, there is something...weird...afoot, and that comes in the form of Old Man Coyote, an ancient Indian god famous for his abilities as a trickster, who leads Sam into more trouble than he can imagine, but also helps him find his way home.

Questions for Discussion:

1. Sam Hunter was initially known as Samson Hunts Alone. What does his name represent? What about the other names in the novel? Is Moore telling us more with the naming? What Indian/Native American name would you select for yourself and why? What do you think describes you best?

2. In ancient Greek and Roman mythology Calliope was the Muse that was associated with creativity, music, artistic expression, and epic poetry. Why name the main female character that name? In what ways did Calliope inspire Sam? How did she lead him on a journey?

3. "Old Man Coyote," or "Coyote," is also known as the Trickster, who can alternately be scandalous, disgusting, amusing, and disruptive, but can also be a creative force in people's lives, transforming their worlds in bizarre and outrageous ways. Why do you think the Coyote comes into Sam's life when he does, and are all the changes he makes for the better?

4. Discuss morality in the course of the book. After the Coyote has disrupted Sam's life, he goes about "making things right" in various ways — for instance, bygetting Sam's home back by breaking Josh Spagnola's legs and helping to blackmail Aaron Aaron. Is he really doing right to Sam by doing wrong to others?

5. Sam doesn't drink because he fears the stereotype of the "drunken Indian" that he has left behind on the Crow Reservation. Discuss stereotypes and how grounded they are in reality. What other "stock" characters are represented in the book? How close are they to their stereotypes?

6. Religion and faith weave themselves into the book in many different ways from Indian/Native American mysticism, Egyptian mythology, to various eastern religions. Discuss faith as it relates to the characters in the book.

7. When Aaron is teaching Sam the various tricks of the insurance game, he tells him to "remember the three m's: mesmerize, motivate, and manipulate" because you're not selling a need, but rather a dream. How does Sam react to this? What does this say about his character?

8. Discuss the idea of communities serving as extended families, which is something stressed in the book about the Crow tribe. Discuss other examples of the "it takes a village" idea.

9. Chart Sam's course from denying his heritage to "finding his way home." Identify and discuss key points in the book that mark a turning point in Sam's journey.

10. Which main character did you get the most "attached" to in the book? Sam? Coyote? Why? What qualities of this character make them endearing to you?

Enhancing Your Book Club:

1. Imagine leaving the life that you grew up with and creating an entirely different persona for yourself, as Sam did. What would you change about yourself, where would you go? What new profession would you choose?

2. In many Native American cultures, when you enter the Spirit World, you can be reincarnated as some new being. Do you believe in reincarnation? If so, what would you like to return as? Why? Learn more about reincarnation at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reincarnation.

3. Learn more about Christopher Moore and his other works at www.chrismoore.com/.

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Reading Group Guide

Part love story, part vision quest, and always somewhat wacky, Coyote Blue tells the story of Sam Hunter — born Samson Hunts Alone on a Crow Indian Reservation, but who reinvents himself as a successful insurance broker, until he is hit with the lightning bolt of love that goes by the name of Calliope. However, as with all Christopher Moore novels, there is something...weird...afoot, and that comes in the form of Old Man Coyote, an ancient Indian god famous for his abilities as a trickster, who leads Sam into more trouble than he can imagine, but also helps him find his way home.

Questions for Discussion:

1. Sam Hunter was initially known as Samson Hunts Alone. What does his name represent? What about the other names in the novel? Is Moore telling us more with the naming? What Indian/Native American name would you select for yourself and why? What do you think describes you best?

2. In ancient Greek and Roman mythology Calliope was the Muse that was associated with creativity, music, artistic expression, and epic poetry. Why name the main female character that name? In what ways did Calliope inspire Sam? How did she lead him on a journey?

3. "Old Man Coyote," or "Coyote," is also known as the Trickster, who can alternately be scandalous, disgusting, amusing, and disruptive, but can also be a creative force in people's lives, transforming their worlds in bizarre and outrageous ways. Why do you think the Coyote comes into Sam's life when he does, and are all the changes he makes for the better?

4. Discuss morality in the course of the book. After the Coyote has disrupted Sam's life, he goes about "making things right" in various ways — for instance, by getting Sam's home back by breaking Josh Spagnola's legs and helping to blackmail Aaron Aaron. Is he really doing right to Sam by doing wrong to others?

5. Sam doesn't drink because he fears the stereotype of the "drunken Indian" that he has left behind on the Crow Reservation. Discuss stereotypes and how grounded they are in reality. What other "stock" characters are represented in the book? How close are they to their stereotypes?

6. Religion and faith weave themselves into the book in many different ways from Indian/Native American mysticism, Egyptian mythology, to various eastern religions. Discuss faith as it relates to the characters in the book.

7. When Aaron is teaching Sam the various tricks of the insurance game, he tells him to "remember the three m's: mesmerize, motivate, and manipulate" because you're not selling a need, but rather a dream. How does Sam react to this? What does this say about his character?

8. Discuss the idea of communities serving as extended families, which is something stressed in the book about the Crow tribe. Discuss other examples of the "it takes a village" idea.

9. Chart Sam's course from denying his heritage to "finding his way home." Identify and discuss key points in the book that mark a turning point in Sam's journey.

10. Which main character did you get the most "attached" to in the book? Sam? Coyote? Why? What qualities of this character make them endearing to you?

Enhancing Your Book Club:

1. Imagine leaving the life that you grew up with and creating an entirely different persona for yourself, as Sam did. What would you change about yourself, where would you go? What new profession would you choose?

2. In many Native American cultures, when you enter the Spirit World, you can be reincarnated as some new being. Do you believe in reincarnation? If so, what would you like to return as? Why? Learn more about reincarnation at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reincarnation.

3. Learn more about Christopher Moore and his other works at www.chrismoore.com/.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 115 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(37)

4 Star

(42)

3 Star

(25)

2 Star

(7)

1 Star

(4)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 115 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Just another reason to love Christopher Moore

    Loved this book...very entertaining and funny! i could not stop reading once i started....Loved the characters and how they interacted with each other...i started reading another of his books right after this one...

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2009

    Funny!

    This book is a light hearted, fun read that is hard to put down.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2007

    A great introduction to Christopher Moore

    This is the first Christopher Moore novel I read, and it led me to become a huge fan of this author. Moore takes the standard 'normal, boring guy falls in love and turns his life upside-down' story and makes it fresh, incredibly entertaining, and fun. Don't be deterred if you're not a fan of fantasy novels (the talking coyote could just as easily be the 'crazy best friend' character in any other novel), because the concept of shedding a false persona to find true self-realization should appeal to fans of any genre. Robert H. Goretsky Hoboken, NJ

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2007

    Not my fave Moore Book...

    ...but still very entertaining. I found it a bit dry at times, but only in comparison to his other novels. Still holds true to Moore's craziness!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2014

    Terrible, vile.

    One of the worst books I've ever read.

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  • Posted November 9, 2013

    This one just didn't do it for me. For some reason it felt more

    This one just didn't do it for me. For some reason it felt more like a Hiaasen than Christopher Moore to me. There were a few funny parts, and it took me until chapter 26 to realize there was a cross-over character. So not all bad, but also not very good. At least for me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2013

    Hilarious.

    Christopher Moore does it again. One of his best books, funny, intelligent, and imaginative.

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  • Posted April 1, 2013

    Highly Recommended - you must check it out!!

    One of my favorite Christopher Moore books, ever. He is awesome!

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  • Posted March 17, 2013

    While I am loving all of Moores novels I've read so far I was mo

    While I am loving all of Moores novels I've read so far I was mostly unimpressed with this one.  The story line is constantly shifting into very unrelated themes, while there is one or two very funny laugh out loud moments I found this novel over all shifting from one place to another or the later building up a plot to end abruptly.  The ending made little sense and was overall disappointing.  I found myself forcing through the second half really wondering where the novel is going.  Not a great read for me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2013

    A quick, fun read.

    C.M. writes a fun story that is quickly read and not easily put down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 12, 2013

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  • Posted July 9, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Laugh out loud funny!

    Coyote Blue is the exact kind of book that you would expect from Christopher Moore. Hilarious with drama and enough touching scenes to keep it relatively grounded. The story involves a member of the Crow Indian reservation who moves on in life without his tribe and their beliefs and is pulled back in by the ridiculously funny trickster god, Coyote. All the characters in this book had some aspect of themselves that were unique enough to be original but still not too bizarre. Christopher Moore is the best comedic writer alive! Great stuff!

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  • Posted June 20, 2012

    Christopher Moore is a Wonderfully Sick Individual

    This is a fantastic and entertaining take on the Trickster. If this is your first book by this author, you won't be disappointed. So far, I can recommend any book I've read by Christopher Moore. I would recommend his books to any adult who enjoys a fun read.

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  • Posted May 29, 2012

    Odd

    I like Christopher Moore, I really do. Lamb is one of my all-time favorite books. His vampire-based stories are great reads. Maybe it's something about the SoCal theme, but coyote Blue just doesn't do it for me the same as some of his others. It's a random read and it keeps you wondering what next, but it's not his best work.

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  • Posted February 20, 2011

    very good

    I really like this book. Often C Moore is just too gross for me. On this though, he avoids that pitfall... Great story, some excellent characters... very funny.... teachers this is the sort of book high school students should read in high school English classes.

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  • Posted July 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Hilarious and unpredictable

    Just like the first Christopher Morris book I read - Practically Demonkeeping - this makes you laugh out loud at spots. Good quick reads that allow you to escape reality

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2006

    Something a little different

    Coyote Blue is a book that will have every reader doubled over with laughter. Christopher Moore is an author that epitomizes quirkiness and out-of-the-box thinking. This particular story is about a man who is hiding from his past, and the Native American God, Coyote, who turns this man¿s life upside down. Much of this story is steeped in humor, one chapter is called ¿Like God¿s Own Chocolate, I¿d Lick Her Sweat Off A Hot Sidewalk¿, another chapter opens with, ¿A nun with an Uzi popped up on the parapet of Notre Dame like a ninja penguin¿ (this was actually talking about a video game that the God, Coyote, was playing). It is lines like these that leave the reader gasping for breath. However, under the humor Moore balances the story out with an undertone of a love story and a story of a man coming to terms with who he really is. This book is truly one of entertainment. It has action, violence, language, sex, all rolled into a huge ball of sarcasm and off-center thinking, and for that it should be read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2001

    Strange Dude...

    What goes on in Christopher Moore's head I wonder? I've read all his books and am fasinated by what must bounce around in the man's head. And the man knows how to write! (Sadly, so few do anymore.) He sucks you right into his stories. Coyote Blue is a great book - couldn't put it down - loved it!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2000

    Howling for Moore

    Want to laugh out loud, learn something, cry, then laugh some more? Read this one-you won't put it down. Christopher Moore goes into exquisite detail without losing the attention of this impatient reader, obviuosly having done his research on Native American folklore, insurance salesmen, and falling in love.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 115 Customer Reviews

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