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"Fast paced...I couldn't put it down.                                            Then I wasn't right for weeks afterwards."

This is a great 1st Time Novel ~ "Intense!"

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          Grizzly bears can and often do kill people. In most of these tragedies, the killings are accidental. Too often people encroach on the bear’s territory and too often people fail to respect nature’s boundaries. Bears are highly evolved, efficient, and exceptional killers. People are soft fleshy things, dangerous in some ways, but altogether quite easy to kill.
          There would be more human deaths caused by grizzlies if it were true that grizzly bears wanted to eat people. There are plenty of people to eat and people are easier to kill than most other creatures in the wilderness. However, in the animal world it is a given that people do not taste good. People have a distasteful toxic flavor and this is otherwise a decisive natural evolutionary defensive aid to the survival of humans.
          People tend to consume a wide variety of unnatural things such as fried foods, alcoholic beverages, unnaturally processed and chemically altered foods, and what they often use on their bodies is worse than what they put in their bodies, shampoos, hair dies, creams, and perfumes. Only insignificant creatures, worms and maggots and necrotic scavengers, could ever subsist on people. When people are killed by an animal, it’s a wonder, because everything about people suggests there is nothing to gain by killing them, not even as much as sport.
          If anything, grizzly bears kill people to be rid of their nuisance. In the wilderness, people are a nuisance, an unnatural nuisance. They exist in contradiction to the natural pecking order of life.

"Van Allen's style is brilliant."

Van Allen's latest project is a psychological thriller tracing a family's terrifying encounter with a bear...a gut-wrenching, bone-snapping, flesh-ripping horrific good story. 

"Loved it from the unique opening prologue to to the back page." @JacquelineJKin2

Bear FAQs and Author Insights

What inspired you to write Bear?

I get inspiration for most fiction I write from my dreams. I dream big and I like to keep a dream log where I write out dreams usually as soon as I wake up, sometimes even in the middle of the night. It's curious to me why I might dream about a monster killer bear chasing people through a frozen forest. About 99% of my writing comes from my dreams. One exception, my Bugs-Clickers story which I based on a story my very young daughter wrote. As a fan of Psychology, I find dreams fascinating. The mind is an incredible thing. Mostly I dream about combat and the military--perhaps due to mild PTSD. I really wish I dreamed less about military combat and war and more about other more fun stuff.

Bear is a different kind of thriller. What do you feel are the most significant and unique aspects of the story?

For one thing, I think readers should consider the bear as the protagonist. Phil is the antagonist. I'm crazy tempted to write more of the story from the bear's point of view. I love that monster bear and what it represents. It represents Nature and its war to reclaim balance from the indignities of human society.

What sort of grade do you give yourself for Bear?

That's a tough question! I hope I don't sound biased. For a new independent author, without access to the large publishing houses and their staffs of editors and writing professionals who work to "photoshop" books for mass publication, I would give Bear  an A-. Readers should look at Bear, read the story, try to feel the tension, follow along with the characters, and get into the plot and the story and the energy and the deep meanings throughout without any urge to be literary critics. The book should be fun to read, not a homework assignment. Judge Bear like you would any work of art---dazzling and brilliant to some and confusing and oddly interesting to some others. Room for improvement? My opinion: Hell yes! A fresh great first novel? My opinion? Hell yes! 

"This might be a new classic in this genre."

"What the hell was wrong with that bear?"

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