Buttermilk Moon by Randy Ray Wise

In 1944, fifteen-year-old farm boy George Cooper goes on a Texas-sized mystical journey to find his father, lost in the Second World War.

At the height of the Second World War, George Cooper’s father is captured by the Wehrmacht. After a devastating storm, George leaves behind a mother, grandmother and girlfriend on their Texas farm and joins the Army to search for his missing father in Europe. With no training and borrowed dog tags, he finds himself in a place both foreign and frightening. George finds his way to Germany with help from a Belgian boy and a secret German book, wrecking a plane and freeing a trainload of Jewish prisoners along the way.

Back home his mother struggles to hold the family together. An eccentric aunt and boozing uncle test her patience. A grandmother grieving her dead husband comforts Sarabelle, George’s girlfriend, who has come to live with the Coopers after the storm and the loss of her family.

Set during the greatest struggle of the twentieth century, Buttermilk Moon is a distillation of what it means to be an American—a mythical connection to the land and family and mystic communion with past generations. George’s quest evokes the human will to survive, the human capacity for suffering and the perseverance—at any cost—to be near those we love.

Complete at 88,000 words.

  • Classification: Moderate
  • Work is: Extract only on Authonomy
  • First submitted Feb. 16, 2009
  • Last updated Feb. 16, 2009
Buttermilk Moon
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  • Retired user
    Shiloh Yazdani wrote 9 months ago

    Due to some computer problem, I was only able to read the prologue. The prologue alone offered an example of your fine writing. You've started a story that is interesting. It has a depth to it that promises a fantastic tale as one reads on. Good job.
    Shiloh
    "Courage Through Faith"

  • Retired user
    AndrewStevens [Retired] wrote 3 years, 3 months ago
    An oldie but a goodie!! I remember reading and loving this back when I was on the site a couple of years ago and it's definitely one of my all-time authonomy favourites. As I said in my original comment, your work is just so 'involving'. Fantastic stuff. Anyway, great to have the chance of another read. Thanks and best of luck. A Thought I'd reprint my original message to try and tempt in some new readers. It really deserves much ...
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  • Retired user
    strachan gordon wrote 3 years, 7 months ago
    Hello Randy , yes you have really captured the Southern speech , I am writing from England , do you know anything about how the Southern accent developed and can you tell the differnce between each state , American speech often seems close to Irish , but few Irish migrated to the South . Do you know any books on this subject? The basic thrust of this book' trying to find the father' is of course very powerful , so ...
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  • Walden Carrington's avatar
    Walden Carrington wrote 3 years, 7 months ago
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  • Walden Carrington's avatar
    Walden Carrington wrote 3 years, 7 months ago

    Randy,
    The prologue of Buttermilk Moon draws the reader in with richly detailed descriptions to paint the scene in the reader's imagination. This is a harrowing account of great historical value. You have created a sympathetic protagonist in George Cooper whose story is one of extraordinary imaginative depth. It appeals to the deepest human emotions and the epic sweep of this work is one I find particularly appealing.

    Walden Carrington
    Titanic: Rose Walsh McLean's Story

  • Walden Carrington's avatar
    Walden Carrington wrote 3 years, 7 months ago
    This comment has failed moderation.
  • Joshua Jacobs's avatar
    Joshua Jacobs wrote 3 years, 8 months ago
    I absolutely love your writing style. The first chapter is detailed, vivid, and well-paced. Your word choice (particularly your verbs) is top notch. While the events of the first chapter have more or less been done in a number of stories, the execution and setting are unique. Once we get into chapter 1, the pace slows a bit, but you've done a great job with your dialogue. It's realistic and helps build your characters who are relateable and genuine. I ...
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  • sargeant's avatar
    sargeant wrote 3 years, 11 months ago

    This is a great read for a Sunday morning with a cup of coffee. I'm enjoying it.

    I had a Texan character in the second book I wrote, A Silent Violence. Being from Canada, I had to investigate the way they talk down there so his speech sounded authentic. You've done a great job with the dialogue here.

    I'm backing it.

  • Nigel Fields's avatar
    Nigel Fields wrote 4 years ago

    A very gripping prologue. Excellent. Enjoyed the next two chapters. Loved the stinky feet bit. I expect this book to rise and am happy to starr it highly to give it a nudge.
    Cheers!
    John B Campbell (Walk to Paradise Garden)

  • olga's avatar
    olga wrote 4 years ago
    Hi Strong writing. Your characters are three dimensional and interesting. This could do with another edit to make it shine. There are just a few nits that I picked up which are below: '...passed him to the woman.' Does the woman have a name? Or do you deliberately not name her as she's unimportant to the story? The first paragraph is a little jerky. It needs a little more so we can visualise the woman. 'His boots turned off the ...
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  • EltopiaAuthor's avatar
    EltopiaAuthor wrote 4 years, 2 months ago

    The writing is good, descriptive, interesting characters.Good descriptive writing, good dialogue.

    Not a fast-paced thriller or anything like that; a little more laconic is how I would describe it. But good strong writing.

  • JOE ADU-GYAMFI's avatar
    JOE ADU-GYAMFI wrote 4 years, 3 months ago

    Great book with fantastic suspenseful plots. backed with pleasure.

  • Retired user
    GK Stritch [Retired] wrote 4 years, 5 months ago

    Dear Randy Ray Wise,

    Pass the chicken and them biscuits as I settle down with this homestyle slice of Southern Gothic -- move over Flannery. Really well done, son, shiny as a harvest moon and thick as buttermilk.

    Best wishes and backed.

    GK Stritch
    CBGB Was My High School

  • Retired user
    zrinka [Retired] wrote 4 years, 5 months ago

    Wonderful writing a real page turner. You captured the time and the characters and the place so well it's hard to believe this word is gone forever. Nicely done!

  • lisawb's avatar
    lisawb wrote 4 years, 6 months ago

    A lovely premise and eye catching cover. The plot is interesting and you have caught the period so well. The characters are outstanding and the whole book comes across as authentic and enjoyable. My only regret is that I am revising, so only have time for the first few chapters.

    backed easily,

    Lisa

  • CarolinaAl's avatar
    CarolinaAl wrote 4 years, 6 months ago

    An intelligent, gritty historical southern epic. You skillfully captured my attention and then my heart. Relatable characters. Authentic dialogue that evokes the era. Accomplished storytelling. Artful writing. Backed.

  • Shakespeare's Talking Head's avatar
    Shakespeare's Talking Head wrote 4 years, 6 months ago

    You have some very fine description here, Randy. I also thought (even though I wasn't alive during this time) that you captured the voice very well. Great dialogue and characters.

  • Eunice Attwood's avatar
    Eunice Attwood wrote 4 years, 6 months ago

    Great story which flows well. Great writing. I love the cover and the pitch was well done. Backed with pleasure. Eunice - The Temple Dancer.

  • mvw888's avatar
    mvw888 wrote 4 years, 7 months ago

    Looks like you're not hanging around here more but wanted to add my voice belatedly to the chorus. Excellent, excellent work. I hope you find a way to get this in print.

    ---Mary
    The Qualities of Wood

  • Bookster's avatar
    Bookster wrote 4 years, 7 months ago

    This is a nicely written book that moves forward at a measured and enjoyable pace. The characters are well-drawn and the dialogue believable. Good job.
    Eric Wilder - Prairie Sunset