Not Your Average Bear & Other Maine Stories
Paperback, $15, ISBN 978-0-88448-290-1
6 x 9, 256 pages, illustrations
"Stelmok is a clever storyteller with a vivid and crafty imagination, skilled with his development of characters and plot. . . . All of these stories are well crafted, suspenseful, and chilling in their gritty descriptions of normal folks in real trouble."
—Bill Bushnell, Times Record
"Stelmok starts from that most basic of writing dictates, 'Write about what you know.' He knows Maine's rural hills and the people who inhabit them. But he doesn't stop there. Rather than analyze the pine needles underfoot, he looks to the heavens, into the egos of men and the hearts of women and, with humor and force, finds startling connections."
—Nancy Grape, Maine Sunday Telegram
". . . here is a Maine writer who is a master of the funny-grotesque-catch-you-in-the-dark tale, a guy who can make you chuckle and then scare you blue."
—Marilis Hornidge, Courier Gazette
"These are magical tales of a Maine where deer transform into men, where an eerily intelligent dog metes out justice, and where the creature pursuing you just might be the Devil himself. In Jerry Stelmok's wonderfully imagined world, anything is possible—and nothing is predictable."
—Tess Gerritsen, author of The Mephisto Club
"In these modern fairy tales set in sharply rendered Maine forests, fields, and small towns, you'll meet the most evil-hearted of villains, the most noble-hearted of heroes, and animal envoys endowed with supernatural powers who see to it that the villains suffer the gruesome fates they so justly deserve. Pull your chair up to the fire, and listen to this master storyteller spin you one terrific yarn after another."
—Robert Kimber, co-author of A Place on Water, author of Upcountry, A Canoeist's Sketchbook, and others.
Best known as a master builder of the wood-and-canvas canoe (and the author of a book about them, p. 17), Jerry Stelmok has now revealed an equally remarkable talent at storytelling. Through these six stories the author takes you up into The County, deep into the North Woods, to western Maine, and down along the coast (and in one instance along the desolate wintry coast of Lake Superior) with convincing familiarity. On the way he introduces you to mostly ordinary people caught in extraordinary, escalating events—forced to confront strange circumstances for which nothing could possibly have prepared them. Jerry's sly humor and a gift for turning up the macabre will keep you turning the pages, late into the night.
For over thirty years Jerry has built wood-canvas canoes professionally, written about canoes, and taught the craft to classes and individuals. In his free time he likes getting outside canoeing, sailing, snowshoeing, hunting, and fishing. Inside, he likes to write and paint. He is the co-author of The Wood and Canvas Canoe.
Tilbury House, Publishers
103 Brunswick Avenue
Gardiner, Maine 04345