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With stabs at the heart, breathtaking surfing scenes and brutal action, THE HOOK tells a suspenseful story of mental illness, addiction, a drug war and saving your sibling while saving yourself. Available NOW at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and other booksellers.


“Kathleen Doler is a fantastic writer. Her prose in THE HOOK is crisp and vivid, immediately engaging readers. She skillfully juggles story lines while employing evocative descriptive passages, and her references to surfing and the workings of a newsroom ring with authenticity. Well-paced, the book is hard to put down. Doler writes what she knows, and the depth of her knowledge adds realism and accuracy to THE HOOK. It makes for a terrific, exciting read.” BlueInk Review


“THE HOOK is a non-stop tide of emotions...There is always something that pulls you back…home, family, love, or addiction. An excellent book!” Philip Zozzaro, Seattle Book Review

“Doler’s writing is vivid and expressive. What keeps the reader on their toes is that there are so many moving parts in Doler’s narrative, and her writing is so evocative, as she writes movingly about her characters’ emotional turmoil, while still keeping up the pace of a thriller. A unique and lyrical work of literary crime fiction, THE HOOK is both soulful and page-turning.” Lysa Grant, Self-Publishing Review

"Honorable Mention," Readers' Favorite Awards 2017, sports genre: “Everything about this book compels the reader to read on. Kathleen Doler is a very gifted writer with exceptional skills in prose, plot, and setting. I was hooked from the beginning by the plot lines and couldn’t stop reading.” Christian Sia, Readers' Favorite

“THE HOOK is a gripping exposé of life on the line. It grasps the reader from the start with its surfing description, then moves rapidly away from the calm aftermath of survival and achievement and into the riptides of a family and community gone awry.” D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review


“In THE HOOK, the pace is swift, the plot is involving, and character development is thorough. There is candor in the way the heroine feels about herself, her increasingly escalating problems, and the dysfunctional family she can distance herself from physically, but not emotionally. Plus, there is a lyrical, almost mystical homage to surfing, sailing, and the sea itself. Participants in this tale are never far from its enticing allure.” Joe Kilgore, the US Review of Books.

In the novel, THE HOOK, author Kathleen Doler adeptly combines her passion for the ocean with considerable insight into complex family dynamics, addiction and recovery, and even law enforcement. The descriptions are detailed yet accessible and lend authority to an engaging saga of life on the edge. The story reminded me of a big wave with a very steep drop; the outcome is uncertain until the ride is over.” — Bruce Topp, retired HR manager, former police officer, and professional surf photographer whose images have appeared in many publications including the San Francisco Chronicle and the Santa Cruz Sentinel. View his photography at

“THE HOOK is a terrific debut novel about the ‘strong sister’ who returns home to rescue a brother who has fallen into a spiral of addiction and despair. The narrator's attempts to get answers lead her down the rabbit hole of the past, even as she’s uncovering the near and present dangers of the present. What I especially loved about this book was the author’s ability to characterize the California coastal community of Half Moon Bay and the working-class people and surfers who live there. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a loved one lost to addiction. I found that I really cared about these people. Dana, the narrator, was strong and compassionate and vulnerable, and I was really rooting for her to win.” Marylee MacDonald, author of Bonds of Love & Blood and Montpelier Tomorrow.”

“THE HOOK is a tale that will resonate with many watermen and women as, sadly, we know that drug addiction is rampant in many of surfing’s inner circles.” Evelyn O'Doherty
Online Editor, Standup

Comments from Reader Reviews of  THE HOOK:

THE HOOK gets it right on so many levels. Written with the kind of smart prose that makes a book hard to put down, THE HOOK deftly explores the question of just how much we owe those we love. I tore through this book and wished there was a sequel the minute I finished reading. Doler is a novelist to watch.”


I couldn't wait to get back to reading THE HOOK every chance I had.”


Kathleen's a natural storyteller, and knows the world she's describing in THE HOOK. Buy this book!”


THE HOOK: A page-turner that sucks you in like a powerful undertow.


Ride THE HOOK’s surging story swell to its satisfying conclusion.”


If you're into fast paced thrillers, twisted family plots, and the ocean, definitely give THE HOOK a try.”

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