By Todd Amenrud
I have known the author of The Dummy Line, Bobby Cole, for almost 20 years. I have to admit that even though I believe he is a very articulate, intelligent person I never knew he was capable of a written work this compelling and powerful. As a favor to a good friend, I told him I would read this book he had written and tell him what I thought. I kept putting off what I thought would be the tedious task of reading "my buddy’s novel" until I knew I had the copy so long he would soon start to get mad if I didn’t. Little did I know what a great storyteller he was and how well he could convey the thrills and emotions of the characters involved. I read it in one sitting…I couldn’t put it down.
You think you know a person and then they surprise you with something like this. I had to ask Bobby Cole a few questions. I wanted to know, "Where did this come from?"
What made you want to write a book?
My story, The Dummy Line, came to me in a dream. It was a very vivid dream that was clear, intense and, quite frankly, frightening. It’s a worst-case scenario that could conceivably play out at any hunting or fishing camp across the country. When I woke up and realized it was only a dream and everyone in camp was okay, I basically thought about the story until daylight. The next day I started formulating the rest of the story in my mind. It sounds crazy to say, but the story just wrote itself. It took a year to write, but it just flowed out. I had a lot of fun developing the characters and the storyline.
What is the plot and how long is the book?
Jake Crosby, a troubled stockbroker, has planned a weekend escape at his hunting camp with his nine year old daughter, Katy. In the middle of the night, a gang of redneck drug dealers attempts to break into the remote camp. The gang’s display of heinous intentions toward Jake and Katy causes Jake to make gut-wrenching decisions.
Running for their lives, Jake and Katy take the only escape route available, which leads them deep into Alabama’s Noxubee River swamp. Crazed with bloodlust and demanding immediate vengeance for their own, the frenzied gang anticipates Jake’s desperate moves as they stalk them throughout the night.
Jake’s choices put into motion a sequence of events that threatens everyone associated with him, and an unwitting young couple who happen to be in the wrong place at the worst possible time.
It’s an intense story, 311 pages in length — the size of most other works in this genre — that will certainly keep readers on the end of their seat.
Did your career at Mossy Oak BioLogic help add to the storyline?
It actually did. I have been fortunate to have traveled the country enabling me to see many different hunting and fishing camps and meeting a lot of colorful people that all fed my imagination for this story. That’s why I said I think the storyline could happen anywhere.
It is not really a hunting book though is it?
No, not at all. It’s set in a hunting camp and any hunter will certainly recognize some of the character’s thinking and rational. But it is not a hunting story. I have had a number of non-hunters, men and women, read it and love it. It’s a suspense thriller that can appeal to anyone who likes a good story.
Was finding a publisher difficult?
Yes, to say the least. I have spent two years chasing publishers. Some of the New York houses seemed scared of it because of the "hunting aspect" of the story, which drove me crazy. I wasn’t about to change my story though. Finally, Context Publishing understood the story’s appeal and the fact there are hunters out there who aren’t a bunch of illiterates. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Without giving away the ending, I will say it felt good to have the hero of the story a hunter. I am not telling who he is though because you’ll have to read it.
So are you planning another book?
Absolutely. But it’s taking some time because we have been so busy with editing the first story. That’s been an adventure in itself. But I do have a second story and, much like The Dummy Line, it is also related to hunting. It’s easy for me to write about stories related to hunting because it’s what I know.
Since I’m the author’s friend you may not believe my praise of the book so I included several quotes from people you may recognize:
"Good novels grow out of a writer’s rich imagination and love for his subject, and Bobby Cole shows both in The Dummy Line. A walk through the woods will never be the same again." — Randall Wallace
, New York Times® Bestseller and award-winning writer-director-producer (Braveheart, Pearl Harbor, We Were Soldiers, Man in the Iron Mask)
"Wow! What a book. I couldn’t put it down. My heart raced and every emotion ran through me as the main character dealt with one crisis after another— situations we all hope never happen. Don’t read this book in a tree stand in an effort to pass the time - you’ll be so involved in the story that you won’t notice that big deer of a lifetime." — Will Primos
, President and Founder of Primos® Hunting Calls
The Dummy Line by Bobby Cole was released Feb. 19, 2008, and can be ordered through any bookstore. It is available at www.amazon.com
and also at www.readbobbycole.com
where a chapter excerpt can be read.
Todd Amenrud is the Director of Public Relations, Territory Manager & Habitat Consultant for BioLogic.