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D. J. Stephens Books
The story of a man, who after being mauled by a grizzly, is transported back in time, two hundred years to a life as a warrior with the Blackfoot Indians.
Do you believe in reincarnation?
BEARKILLER is a fast paced adventure novel that takes a man from the present to over two hundred years in the past, to possibly a past life!
Jeff Barkil has a passion for hunting. It seems to have been an integral part of his being since he was a boy. But he has never known why he is so drawn to it. Maybe after this he will.
On a solo elk hunt in the Rocky Mountains, Jeff discovers something very peculiar. Although he's never even seen this place before, he seems to know all the landmarks. Somehow he's able to guess exactly what is in the next valley or over the next hill. Dismissing these amazing perceptions as a fluke, he carries on with his hunt-until he is attacked by a vicious grizzly. Using a great deal of natural skill and determination, Barkil manages to kill the bear and survive. But he is badly injured; he feels close to death. With no one to help him, he struggles to get himself out of the mountains.
On the second morning of his ordeal, he awakens with his mind in a blur. All he knows for sure is that he is young…in his late teens…and that he has just killed an attacking grizzly. While he is trying to clear his head, he discovers that he has traveled two hundred years back in time and a hunting party of Blackfoot Indians has taken him to their village to honor him for his bravery. Soon he is regarded as a splendid warrior and is given the name "Bearkiller." In the boy's subsequent adventures stealing horses and waging war against the Shoshone and the Sioux; he encounters and learns the landmarks he will recognize over two hundred years later as Jeff Barkil.
In due course, Bearkiller rescues the beautiful daughter of a chief, falls in love with her, and takes her as his bride. But the life of an Indian in the 1780's was often brief. One day in a fierce battle, the old grizzly wounds are reopened and he is defeated. With blood pouring out of his body, Bearkiller lies down to die…and wakes up in a Forest Service rescue helicopter, as Jeff Barkil. The woman attending him, a doctor from the Blackfoot reservation, is fascinated that he has come out of unconsciousness speaking fluent Blackfoot. He's even calling her by her Blackfoot name. It's also the name of Bearkiller's wife.
As the events of his life as an Indian slip rapidly from his mind, Jeff Barkil wonders if what he experienced was real. Was he dreaming? Or was he reliving a past life? What will always remain clear is the image of a great grizzly standing over him, looking down at him as if from the top of a mountain, seeming to know his soul, somehow communicating to him without saying the words: “Until we meet again, Bearkiller.”
For a little more than a year, Bearkiller spent every waking moment under the guidance of Smiling Otter. The old man would sit for hours, explaining the ways and beliefs of the Blackfoot.
Bearkiller was an excellent student. He loved everything about it and learned very quickly.
Smiling Otter told him such things as; “Nothing great or worthwhile can be accomplished without the help of Old Man and therefore you should pray to him everyday. When first you rise with the sun, put on your moccasins, go to the water’s edge and bathe. Then stand facing the sun and pray. This is something each man must do alone. Give thanks for the morning light. Give thanks for your life and strength. Give thanks for your food and give thanks for the joy of living. If you have nothing to be thankful for, then the fault is truly yours.” He told him, “honesty within the tribe was absolute; there was no lying or stealing. To kill another member of the tribe would mean instant death.”
Bearkiller learned to speak the tongue of the Blackfoot as well as his own and better than he had spoken Spanish.
Betsie's Literary Page
D.J. Stephens doesn't just have a talent for writing. It goes beyond that. He is a wonderful story teller, a weaver of words. I have read many stories about Indians, the culture and struggles of this breed has my utmost respect and empathy. Bear Killer is a true warrior, with many coups. Mr. Stephens pulls the reader into the ways of the Indian with no trouble at all. He captivates you by placing you into the moccasins of Bear Killer. I walked each step, rode each mile, and fought each battle with him. This is a graphic book, with many bloody battles. By becoming one with Bear Killer, you come to an understanding of his ways and know that he must fight each fight alone, for there is no other way. The many battles against various tribal warriors leaves you with a sense of wonder at the magnitude of their lives. I already had respect for the Indian, Mr. Stephens brings that respect to a higher level. His twist of reincarnation is brought about in a most believable fashion. I loved this book from beginning to end. I did not want to put it down until I was finished, but I did not want it to come to an end. Bearkiller is a story that could go on forever. It is a most fascinating read, one in which you will not be disappointed. I have high regards for the author and story teller, D.J. Stephens.
Brenda M Weber/ Avid reader and author
I have to say, up front, I am not a big reader. I picked up your book Bearkiller and I could not put it down. From start to finish it kept me reading, I even wanted to miss work just to see what Bearkiller would do next, but duty and soldiers come first, so I put the book down the first day just long enough to work and I had to finish reading it that night. The adventures were adventurous to say the least but close to realistic, the romance was relatable to the romance we pursue in our daily life, and the honor and valor in which he fought every battle is one that every soldier hopes to achieve in that split second of fate.
Thank you, for sending us a piece of your work and taking the time to sign every copy. I look forward to seeing more of your work in the future.
Eric D Honeycutt
Reviews for "BEARKILLER"
|Reviewed by Sherry Gibson
|Story Telling At It's Best:
D.J. Stephens has done an excellent job of pulling the reader right into the story with the characters! The author has given very close attention to details and has an uncanny ability to entwine accuracy within his story telling. Bearkiller is an adventure that caught my attention on the first page and drew me so deeply into the story I could not stop reading. I was one with the characters, experiencing the Native American life page after page. The story is at times raw and rough as life was in the days the Native Americans roamed free in the Montana mountains. I held my breath through gruesome battles that were handled with delicacy for all who read. I expereinced great hunts and felt the thrill of the kill! This book is full of action and adventure yet invovles love and caring. Throughuot the entire book I appreciated the respect the author displayed to the Native American and their beliefs. This was brought out in such a clear and tender way. I was captivated from the first page and the pace of the book remained true to the end. This is by far one of the best by a new author that I have had read. D.J. Stephes proved to be an artist with words. He took the tiniest details and made them become real to my eyes. If I were to recommend just one book from Publish America as a must read, Bearkiller would be my choice. The only disappointment I felt with this book was the fact that I came to the end and there was no more to read! When I did read the end, D.J. Stephens did not disappoint me. The story ended as well as it began and as well as it read all the way through. I walked away from this book feeling I had been blessed with a very up close and personal glimpse into the life of my ancestors. I knew when I put this book down I had just read the work or a real professional!
Reader and Author,
Sherry L Gibson
|Reviewed by Carol Kluz (Kaz)
|Congratulations on your book. The plot sounds intriguing. Best of luck in your writing career. Regards, Kaz|
|Reviewed by Lisa Young (Reader)
|DJ, this sounds like an interesting story, and a well-written one. Please let me know when it is released. Lisa|
|Reviewed by Bill Johnson
|Don asked me to read his manuscript prior to sending the final revision to his publisher. Once I started I couldn't put it down, the story completely pulled me in and couldn't wait to turn the page. When I finished I was exhausted, there are no pauses in the excitement. I will buy it to read again as soon as it's released.|
|Reviewed by Georgia A. Ziller
|I have had the privilege to read the manuscript of "Bearkiller". From the very first page I was hooked and couldn't put it down. D.J. Stephens writes a book the way I like a book to be written. It is a fast paced, action packed, suspensful and thrilling novel, page after page. I love the way the story line was tied to both the past and the present.It is definitely a "must read" book. You will immediately become a D. J. Stephens fan after reading this book! I was so impressed with this novel, that I knew it would be an asset to carry in my Native American & Southwest Art store, Spotted Moon. I contacted D.J.Stephens and asked if he would do a book signing, as soon as the book was available, and I am happy to say he has agreed.|
|Reviewed by m j hollingshead
|enjoyed the excerpt|
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