“I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Through the use of extremely detailed descriptions, the author was able to bring the characters to life.” 5/5 stars – Online Book Club
“The narrative is rich, the character development is complete, and the overall feel of the story is fantastic. There are life lessons in this story and each character has a tale to tell and a point to prove. I highly recommend it!” 5/5 stars – Readers’ Favorite
“Something I particularly enjoyed is this realistic version of hope. Stephen displays hope in a variety of ways over the course of his life, but it can be taken away at any moment. Hope isn’t there and unattainable, nor is it there and never-ending. Hope ebbs and flows across the pages, following Stephen’s loves, losses, and traumas. When he feels like giving up, it’s painful and familiar. Nothing feels fake about his reasons for making the choices he makes; you, as the reader, just have to hold tight through the journey with him to find out where it’ll take him.”
– Independent Book Review
A big dreamer and successful novelist carries the sins of his father and a secret that leaves him wondering if he is the author or killer of love.
Stephen feels he is marked from day one to lose the ones he loves. His mother dies giving birth to him, and his alcoholic father makes sure Stephen never forgets it. To block out his father’s hate, fists, and belt, young Stephen loses himself in his imagination. Stories become his closest companions and barricades against a family that never wanted him. Once he can look his father in the eye, Stephen swears he will never be the monster his old man is. He vows he will become a published author, if for no other reason than to prove his father wrong.
While his dreams of being a bestselling novelist and falling in love come true, Stephen has much to prove to himself before he can write his own happy ending. Set against the backdrop of Prohibition-era Cleveland, Stephen fights the same alcoholic demons that plagued his father as he tries to begin a life free from his family. He meets equally headstrong Julie and is smitten, but their marriage is as fractured as his career is solid. He can find ten ways to write about being in love, but he has a hard time translating love on the page to love in real life. Julie slips between his fingers like sand, and Stephen sees his father staring back when he looks in the mirror.
Try as he might to rewrite his life, even going so far as to change his name, he has to wonder if he is the author or the killer of love.
Join me as Brian Callanan, Emmy-winning TV host and producer with over 25 years of experience, interviews me in “Inside the Audiobooth.” I had the immense pleasure of working with Brian for the production of the audiobook of The Rock at the Bottom. His talent brought my words to life a way. He also narrated A Laughing Matter of Pain.
Join me for the live chat with Jeremy Jusek and Rebecca Rizzuti from day 1 of my book launch/Amazon Bestseller Campaign on March 21, 2023, as we hear testimonials, discuss the craft and craziness of writing, and whether a character is ever beyond redemption.
Join me for a live chat with Alexia Patrick from day 2 of my book launch/Amazon Bestseller Campaign on March 22, 2023, as we hear testimonials, dive deep into writing and how I got started, celebrate the bestseller and hot new release, and thank everyone who contributed!