The Bible Salesman Review
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While hitchhiking across North Carolina, where he’s been traveling door to door selling Bibles (which he got for free by suggesting that they’d be used for missionary work), 20-year-old Henry Dampier meets Preston Clearwater, a professional-looking man in a nice, new Chrysler.

As they travel together, Clearwater gets to know all about his young, naïve passenger. He learns about Henry’s strict upbringing and his issues with his family. And he quickly concludes that Henry is both trustworthy and gullible—the perfect combination for a business partner.

Though Clearwater is really a car thief, he tells Henry that he’s working undercover with the FBI to bust a ring of car thieves. He explains that he needs someone to work with him—to drive the stolen cars from place to place while Clearwater follows behind in his Chrysler.

Henry’s thrilled by the opportunity to work with the FBI. He makes a ton of money—and, who knows, it might even lead to a real FBI job someday. Then, when he meets Marleen—and he starts having feelings for her—he’s on top of the world. But he has no idea that his life—and his sparkling reputation—might be in serious danger.

Much like Tony Earley’s recent release, The Blue Star, The Bible Salesman is a slow and smooth coming-of-age novel, written in a down-home Southern style.

Henry Dampier is a sweet but sheltered character—one who tries really hard to do what’s right for himself and his family. He tries to be a good Christian, too—though, as he reads through the Bibles he’s selling, he realizes that he really doesn’t understand it. He just has so many questions about life and God and love that he sometimes feels a bit lost. Then, just when he needs someone to guide him, along comes exactly the wrong man: lying, cheating, murdering, car-stealing Preston Clearwater. And although his relationship with Clearwater isn’t what he thinks it is, it does end up teaching Henry a whole lot about being a man

Though it does tend to drag from time to time, The Bible Salesman wasn’t meant to be a fast-paced read. It’s just a Southern boy’s story—and an interesting one at that. It doesn’t come to an earth-shattering conclusion—nor will it stick with you long after you finish reading. But its characters and its laid-back Southern style make The Bible Salesman a relaxing read for a quiet afternoon.

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