FEAST FOR THIEVES
A Rowdy Slater Novel
By: Marcus Brotherton
Published: September 1, 2014
Publisher: Moody Publishers/River North Fiction
Marcus Brotherton is well-known as a best-selling author for his books based on real people, including those who fought during WWII. Staying in the time period of the 1940’s and with his main character a war veteran, Brotherton eases his way into the fiction realm with both barrels blasting.
When I was first approached about reading this novel, I honestly wasn’t sure I was going to like it. Frankly, it sounded more like a “man’s” novel, even though I enjoy historical fiction. I was wrong. This is a novel that both men and women can read and enjoy together. If you have a book club with both genders, this is one I’d highly recommend. Even though discussion questions were not included in the book, there would be a lot to talk about and contemplate with your members.
Rowdy Slater has seen it all serving on the lines in WWII and as a paratrooper. After being dishonorably discharged, he finds coming home more difficult than he thought it would be. With no job, no home, no money and a record, he ends up resorting to robbing a bank with an old prison friend, Crazy Ake. After barely escaping the authorities, Rowdy ends up having second thoughts. With Crazy Ake nowhere to be found, he returns the money to the small town of Cut Eye, Texas. After meeting with the town Sheriff, he offers Rowdy a deal, go to jail or become the town minister for a year, with the requirement of turning the community around and getting more of the men in church and less of them in the bars and brothels.
Rowdy decides being a minister is better than life in jail, so he agrees to the crazy plan and assumes it is just a one-day-a-week job. Then he meets the current fill-in pastor, the lovely Bobbie Barker. From her he learns that being a minister is much more than preaching at the pulpit and that being a minister might change his life along with the town of Cut Eye.
Brotherton places you smack dab in Cut Eye with his descriptions of the debilitated church and parsonage, the couple who run the cafe, the stern church secretary and her ill husband, sweet and sassy Bobbie Barker, and the evil Crazy Ake. You will feel like you know each of them like family at the end of the novel. By using the setting and the dialect of the place and time, you are certain that Brotherton did his homework and researched every piece of this novel.
There are many surprises and nail-biting pages during Rowdy’s year of ministry. Of course, there is a Christian piece to the story, but it is subtle enough to fit with Rowdy’s preaching and care of his community. There are some parts where you will be praying right along with Rowdy because you will want everything to turn out okay even though you can’t imagine how it will be.
Based on the subtitle of the book, I have to assume that we might be hearing more about Rowdy Slater’s story. The ending leaves you hanging a bit and wanting to know more of what happens to the people of Cut Eye. I am quite sure I won’t be the only reader hoping for more fiction from Marcus Brotherton.
Marcus Brotherton is a journalist and professional writer known internationally for his books and literary collaborations with high-profile public figures, humanitarians, inspirational leaders, and military personnel. He has authored or coauthored more than 25 books. Marcus lives with his wife and children in Washington State. For more information, you check out his website, http://www.marcusbrotherton.com/ . You can also find him on Facebook, HERE and Twitter, HERE.
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