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Cryptid: The Lost Legacy of Lewis & Clark [Kindle Edition]

Eric Penz
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Something haunts the woods of Olympic National Park, a nightmare in hiding. Its existence has been kept secret by a conspiracy that stretches back to President Thomas Jefferson and the Lewis & Clark expedition. The truth that we have not been alone on this earth would have forever been lost except that some species just won’t die.

Dr. Samantha Russell has spent her career seeking for truth in the only way she knows how, on her hands and knees, painstakingly digging it up from the crust of the earth. When the truth arrives by way of FedEx, she cannot help but see it as nothing more than another scientific hoax, especially considering the source. Dr. Jon Ostman has practically been excommunicated by the scientific community for his interest in such subjects as the American Sasquatch.

Suffering from her father's tragic sense of curiosity, though, Sam can't resist the question begged by the bones contained in the wooden crate. How could they be bones and not fossils since Gigantopithecus had been extinct for 125,000 years?

Driven to know the answer, Sam delays going to her father on his deathbed and instead pursues Jon to a remote corner of Washington state where he is about to make the greatest discovery involving the origins of the human species, a discovery Lewis and Clark may have already made two hundred years earlier. However, Sam is not the only one pursuing Jon, for one of our nation's first secrets is still being kept by all means necessary.

And if they do survive the centuries-old conspiracy, they will not only rewrite American history, but they will prove that we are not the only intelligent, bipedal primate to survive extinction.

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eric Penz is a partner in an insurance and financial services agency. Between managing his clients? portfolios and writing, he spends his spare time as an amateur adventure athlete. He and his wife and their two boys make their home in Sammamish, Washington.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1565 KB
  • Print Length: 330 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Booktango (November 4, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00GR30RU2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #452,389 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A thought-provoking, pulse-pounding adventure December 25, 2005
Everyone loves a good conspiracy, and Eric Penz presents an intriguing one in his debut novel regarding a cover-up of the Bigfoot legend led by--who else?--those two great, faceless evils: big business and the U.S. government. A bit of a stretch, at first glance, to imagine that one or both have found it in the best interests of the American people to hide the existence of Sasquatch from the common man. But with copious research and meticulous attention to historical detail, Penz raises some convincing arguments. As any conspiricist knows, it's not about proving your theory IS true, only raising the possibility that it COULD be.

But this story is not merely about telling us how evil Big Brother can be. It's an adventure, filled with all of the requisite chills, horrors, and romances one might expect. Think JURASSIC PARK rather than HARRY AND THE HENDERSONS. How would an eight-foot primate trained to hate man really react when encountered by him? The answer, very believably, is with a unique blend of animal savagery and human cunning, with the hunters quickly becoming the hunted.

The juxtaposition carries nicely throughout, as the story balances between scientific theory and heart-stopping thriller. There are some anticipated moments, and some jaw-dropping ones. Most importantly, the characters come across as real people with believable motives. If certain matters seem somewhat unresolved in the end, keep in mind, that's how life usually works. Besides, the moment a conspiracy theory is forced fully into the light, it ceases to become conspiracy.

If you're a fan of early American exploration, a Sasquatch aficionado, or if you simply enjoy modern-day adventure and edge-of-your-seat thrills, Eric Penz's "Cryptid" offers plenty for you to enjoy.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a rollicking romp of an adventure novel with a science fiction skeleton -- or maybe it's the other way around. The action ranges from China to Washington, D.C. to the Olympic rain forest and points in between, and the story is told in several voices which are as distinct and characteristic as they are engaging. The characterization is strong, the pace is brisk without being rushed, the surprises are neither telegraphed or short-changed, and the whole thing is an absolute hoot from start to finish (in the sense of being great fun). Penz resists the temptation to tie everything up in too tidy a bundle at the end of the novel, so that the intrigue lives on when the last page is turned -- in other words, it delivers (grin). I particularly enjoyed the integration of long-dead voices into the living narrative, phonetic spelling and all. Recommended for a fun read, but maybe not to take camping with you if you're going to the woods!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best cryptozoology novels September 5, 2006
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Cryptid is much better than I expected, and much better than most novels with similar themes.
There's a lot to like in this thriller, beginning with the fact that Penz has clearly done his historical and scientific homework.
I am no scholar of the Lewis and Clark period, but Penz' descriptions of this era and the re-created correspondence of the explorers and President Jefferson are convincing.
Concerning the structure of the novel, it's pretty sound - the search for gigantopithecus remains and the search for sasquatch are neatly brought together in a well-plotted tale that involves a few coincidences, but nothing that feels too unlikely.
Penz' sasquatch (nine feet eight inches tall for a subadult male) is larger than sighting reports and footprints seem to indicate, and maybe too large for a workable bipedal primate, though the rest of the ape description works very well. Penz has tried hard to create a believable, scientifically founded tale of Giganto's evolution and migration, and he's done it well. He does make an odd error when he describes most known ape species as nocturnal, which they are not.
What is really outstanding in Penz' writing is his gift for description. Very few authors can completely immerse the reader in an environment, and I don't think it's reaching to compare Penz with naturalist Diane Ackerman or even novelist Barbara Kingsolver on this point. As the reader, you see, hear, and smell everything along with the characters.
The characters are good, from the dedicated scientist Dr. Ostman (a nice nod to sasquatch history in that name) to the lovers separated by professional ambitions. The Indian hunter feels a bit sterotypical, although he's very well-drawn.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Heart-pounding thrill June 20, 2006
Cryptid: n. subject of Cryptozoological scrutiny; animals of unexplained form or size, or unexpected occurrence in time or space.

Opening with the alleged suicide of Meriwether Lewis, Cryptid takes the reader two hundred years into the past in order to set the stage for a page-turning, conspiracy theory thriller. The circumstances around Lewis' death, and the missing journals from the Lewis and Clark expedition, have enough unanswered questions to keep the speculation flying, and author Penz uses this to great advantage.

It doesn't take long for Penz to move his story into the present time and almost immediately after that he introduces the key player, Gigantopithecus. Long known to be extinct, fossilized remnants of this Giant Ape are concentrated mainly in China, where the natives grind them up to use in various health-giving potions.

Paleontologist Samantha Russell has spent her career seeking the truth about Gigantopithecus, excavating tiny fossilized bits and pieces out of the ground. When a packing crate arrives at her dig site only moments before Chinese government officials escort her out of the country, she barely has time to register that the specimens inside the box are bone, not stone. This discovery prompts her to seek out the sender, cryptozoologist Dr. Jon Ostman, a man virtually excommunicated from the scientific community for his interest in subjects such as the American Sasquatch.

A specimen so recently deceased would be a gold mine and a feather in the cap of whomever published the proof. It would also be an environmental nightmare for the forestry industry, as logging would have to be stopped in the fertile Olympic forests of Washington while an impact study is done.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the BEST cryptofiction novels
I really liked this book. First off, I'd like to say Eric Penz is a terrific writer and has really found his calling as a novelist. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Lee Murphy
3.0 out of 5 stars Bigfoot mixed with a centuries spanning cover up seemed like a good...
Bigfoot mixed with a centuries spanning cover up seemed like a good start. Overall, the story dragged a little and the conspiracy was a little too pat. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars 4.4 Stars for this Cryptid Thriller in the Hoh Valley Rain Forest of...
Cryptid: The Lost Legacy of Lewis & Clark has flashes of brilliance. I would rate it as outstanding, but it is very good on its own merits. Read more
Published 6 months ago by YB
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book!
This book was recommended by Dr. Karl Shuker. It is an enjoyable book with a very unique premise, especially compared to other crypto-fiction. Read more
Published 8 months ago by J Bob
2.0 out of 5 stars Not My Cup Of Tea
I purchased this book on the solid recommendations of a large number of reviewers. After only the first couple of chapters I had got disenchanted but persisted for another few. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Randhir
5.0 out of 5 stars First time novelist hits a home run!!
In my opinion Eric Penz's novel cryptid is a must read for anyone who is a fan of these type of stories. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Gregorybaisden
5.0 out of 5 stars A Giant adventure
The action is non-stop, the story is intriguing and the historical references add a unique twist to this story. Well written entertainment.
Published 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars The Devil. He is awake.
Rivetting original tale about the science of bigfoot wrapped in a parable about man's obsession and greed. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Rick Walters
3.0 out of 5 stars Confusing
The book was so to start and ended up giving me a headache. I thought the premise was good but the jumping back and forth in time made me dizzy! Read more
Published 23 months ago by Bill Baker
4.0 out of 5 stars On my second reading...
I read this book about 4 years ago and it was ok, now I've almost finished reading for the 2nd time and I'm really enjoying it.
Published on December 23, 2012 by Howie
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More About the Author

Like any normal person, I am a bit schizophrenic. I have two personalities. One craves outdoor adventure. This half of me is responsible for my garage being full of cycling, mountaineering, skiing, kayaking and SCUBA gear. All well used. A perfect day is filled exercising as much of this gear as possible. Maybe hitting a favorite single track on my mountain bike in the morning and skinning up a craggy Cascade peak on my backcountry skis in the afternoon, then pointing my tips downhill and pounding fresh powder all the way to the truck. Or maybe start the day with a run in my kayak on one of the many local rivers before catching white-line fever on my road bike, chasing the sun over the horizon.

Watching the sun drop below that misty horizon, though, is what feeds my other half. The half that wonders what might lie just beyond. The world map may no longer have empty, unexplored space within its borders, no terra incognito, but that does not mean the human experience is void of mystery and adventure. Quite the contrary. There is one realm we each have access to that will never be fully explored, fully known, or fully mapped. One place that stretches limitless into infinity, rich with mystery and unending adventure. And the imagination of the storyteller is the magic that transports us over that unreachable horizon to a spot on the map that cannot otherwise be reached. That magical place is Story. As much as I am an outdoor adventurer, I am a storyteller. For me they are each seekers of the same. A glimpse of what lies just beyond that shimmering, elusive horizon.

With that introduction then, I am Eric Penz. Author, reader, and pursuer of what lies just beyond the horizon.

Eric Penz is the author of the award-winning novel, Cryptid: The Lost Legacy of Lewis & Clark and the novella, Courage Between. He earned his bachelor of science degree in environmental biology from Eastern Washington University in 1995. His postgraduate work was done at the University of Washington where he completed a two-year literary program in commercial fiction. He is also an alumni of The Film School. In 2012 he sold his insurance agency to begin a financial advisor practice and focus on his writing. He and his family live in the great Pacific Northwest where he can cycle, mountain climb, and ski all in the same day.

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