At the Megachurch Pastor Retreat, there were in attendance five gluttons, six bigots, three jihadists, four crooks, eight adulterers, 13 workaholics, three closet homosexuals, two embittered atheists, nine slanderers (also called gossips or perjurers, depending on the day), three rebels who had yet to intentionally submit to a single authority figure, two junior members who coveted everything else from everyone else in the group (hidden sins included), and one man with an even darker secret.
When his secret is exposed, what will the others do to him?
PRAISE FOR LANCELOT SCHAUBERT AND BELL HAMMERS::
"Schaubert recounts a mischievous man's eight decades in Illinois's Little Egypt region in his picaresque debut. Remmy's life of constant schemes and pranks and a lifelong feud with classmate Jim Johnstone and the local oil drilling company proves consequential. This is a hoot."
- Publisher's Weekly
"BELL HAMMERS is written in a style not unworthy of John Kennedy Toole and William Faulkner - the vivid characterization of Southern ethnography commingled with stark, episodic spectacle breathes with the spirit of quintessential Americana. It is a text I would happily assign in an American Novel class and would expect it to yield satisfying discourse alongside works in the canon, whether beside the sardonic prose of Mark Twain or the energetically painful narratives of Toni Morrison."
- Dr. Anthony Cirilla
"Schaubert's words have an immediacy, a potency, an intimacy that grab the reader by the collar and say, 'Listen, this is important!' Probing the bones and gristle of humanity, Lancelot's subjects challenge, but also offer insights into redemption if only we will stop and pay attention."
- Erika Robuck, national bestselling author of Hemingway's Girl
"Myth, regret, the lore of our heritage and the subtle displays of our castes - no one so accurately and imaginatively captures the joys and sorrows of life in the Midwest as Schaubert does here. BELL HAMMERS is a Tree Grows in Brooklyn as told by Gabriel Garcia Marquez if Marquez lived in rural Illinois and only told stories to his grandkids. Seriously a delight to read."
- Colby Williams, author of the Axiom Gold Medal winning book Small Town, Big Money
"Loved BELL HAMMERS because Lancelot wrote about people who don't get written about enough and he did it with humor, compassion, and heart."
- Brian Slatterly, author of Lost Everything and editor of The New Haven Review
"I'm such a fan of Lancelot Schaubert's work. His unique view and his life-wisdom enriches all he does. We're lucky to count him among our contributors."
- Therese Walsh, author of The Moon Sisters and Editorial Director of Writer Unboxed
"Lancelot Schaubert writes with conviction but without the cliché and bluster of the propaganda that is so common in this age of blogs and tweets. Here is a real practitioner of the craft who has the patience to pay attention. May his tribe increase!"
- Jonathan Wilson Hartgrove, author of Common Prayer and The Awakening of Hope
"Lancelot's attentive, thoughtful, a bit quirky, and innovative. He continues to impress me. He 'sees, ' and BELL HAMMERS is full of details that enable his audience to see. Bravo, Lance."
- Jackina Stark, author of Things Worth Remembering and Tender Grace
"Schaubert's narratives are emotionally stirring with both a vulnerable sensibility and rawness to them. BELL HAMMERS will take you on a journey full of open wounds, intimate successes and personal delights. Lancelot's words have a calmness, a natural ease but the meaning is always commanding and dynamic."
- Natalie Gee, Brooklyn Film Festival