Friday, January 8, 2016

After the Goode, Third in Jake Roberts Series, by Cary Allen Stone, Spotlighted Author

I admit it, I'm not much for comedy--I never could understand the desire to make fun of other people--nor the desire to laugh at such actions. Pointing this out is a disclaimer that the part of the book set within a Comedy Club has no bearing on my enjoyment of the overall book, After the Goode. Nor does it have any bearing on showing Madonna as a stand-up comedienne... LOL

After the Goode:
A Jake Roberts Novel

By Cary Allen Stone 

“Okay, how about you sir, 
with the discount hairpiece and the ’50s
 bowling shirt. Yes, you sir. I have to ask,
 is that your real face?”
 Donald wasn’t in the mood. He wasn’t 
 He didn’t want to be in the club, 
or be part of the show. He only went there
 for Betty. He took serious offense
 at the remark, joke or not. 
Bobby pressed him.
 “What? You look offended...
The story is quite different from the first two novels and presents a  diversion from Jake Roberts' previous involvement with serial killers. In fact, there could be a compelling question as to whether the action was actually murder... 

The gripping question faced is "What would you do if you killed somebody?

Meet Bobby Goode... He was in his hometown to perform at the local comedy club...

Bobby Goode’s name on the marquee of the comedy club glared in sun-yellow sequenced bulbs against the deepening twilight. Other businesses posted less aggressive solicitations. His shows sold out within a minute of availability through the ticket outlets. Excited ticket holders stood beneath the marquee and looked for an opportunity to cut the line. Some would try the corridor between the comedy club and Copper Blues the nightclub next door...

Phoenix loved comedy. It was a comedic oasis in the desert. The Valley lay open its arms to anyone who could make them howl. From their seats, they had watched A to Z list comics gnaw at their funny bones and solicit gut wrenching laughter. Bobby had succeeded without inner demons driving him, unlike his peers who carried their personal psychosis and dependencies as crosses to the stage. Fallon saw that in Bobby. The only fear he had was losing it all, the fame and fortune. Bobby believed his Goode luck and timing would always see him through. He had just played San Francisco and was scheduled to do four sold out shows in Phoenix, before moving on to the Apple. Once there, it was a sold out Radio City Music Hall and a stop by the Fallon Show to say thanks to Jimmy for believing in him. It was also a special night for him because his career began in Phoenix. He was a hometown boy, Arizona born and raised. It was the place where he got his chops playing the small clubs.
The DJ cued up Red Rider’s Lunatic Fringe, the star’s anthem. Bobby got pumped as the music drove through the monster speakers. He wore black jeans, boots and a long-sleeve black shirt with the sleeves rolled up to the elbow revealing a fashionable black leather and sterling silver clasped bracelet. His face had a three-day stubble that was very Duchovney-esque. His spiky black hair was in disarray. Looking blue-collar and talking white trash was part of the act. The common man and woman related to the rebel image of "I don't take shit from the man!"
 In reality, everyone knew they worked for the man, even famed comics. That was where the paychecks came from so everyone could play. In real estate, the rule was "location, location, location" but in comedy, the rule was "attitude, attitude, attitude." 
The volume of the song dropped, while the DJ's voice rolled like thunder. His tone resembled an introduction to a WWF fight. “Are you ready Phoenix? Are you ready for the bad ass of comedy?” They screamed louder.

Before the night was over, Bobby Goode had killed a man and burned his body...

At about the same time Bobby Goode had arrived, so had Jake Roberts. He was there to visit an old friend, Fred Campbell. Actually, Fred had also just arrived in town, having completed his latest flight as an airline pilot...

Big changes had happened in Jake's life. For one, he had met Caitland. And for what he'd done, on his last case, he'd accepted a forced retirement. Caitland was thrilled to have him become a new client when he began writing novels and had become quite successful. Caitland was a well-known agent and was quite busy but Jake and Caitland had found a special kind of love that they both worked hard to maintain...mainly with Caitland striving hard to keep Jake from getting into tight situations like he'd routinely been in as a cop... But because of his expertise, she soon had him signed on as an expert consultant on movies...

And coincidentally got identified for who he was and requested to consult on the death of a visitor to Phoenix who had been short and burned in his rented car...

Fred had also found a lady-love and the four got to be close friends... And Fred had a personal love for comedy and even had done a little stand-up... Soon the four had attended the comedy club where Bobby Goode, of whom Fred was a fan, was playing...Soon they had become acquainted. But Bobby was beginning to change... He was missing rehearsals, going off on his own and even having a bad time on stage...His thoughts roamed all over the place, while one song began to constantly play over and over in his head...
The lyric from Rooster by Alice In Chains played in his head. He closed his eyes. It reverberated. He had been hearing it playing louder and louder all day for some reason, and now he knew why. “Here they come to snuff the rooster”

All of us who read this story will automatically start considering what they would do if they had killed somebody. Readers see the choices made by the man who had killed another--to hide the body. Then we watch as the man himself begins to deteriorate and change because of his decisions. A very interesting twist is that the killer falls in love for the first time and wants to have a life and a future with her...

Another thought-provoking story that again places readers into the minds of a killer. At this point, I haven't quite figured out what the author wants us to see--perhaps he's asking us to consider carefully our actions of today and what they might mean to the rest of our lives? Stone certainly has created a theme that forces those thoughts... I wondered, also, based upon my own opinion about this style of comedy, whether there was a message about using what is more sarcasm than humor and calling it funny. In any event, the inclusion of the novel within the framework of the other three more classic thrillers, certainly provides a break in continuity that sets readers up for the next book, which could also be the last one if the author decides to end the series with After the Kill... That review is coming next...

This novel proved to be an excellent transition into the next book. Stone has a method of bringing old friends or new friends back into his lead character's life, which allows us to become intimately involved with him. We learn about his shenanigans with these men and the jokes about how they all seemed to have turned out quite differently than the nuns had predicted they would...

Here's one reader who hopes that the series does not end... Jake Roberts as a consultant like Castle, maybe or somehow still finding cases that need his attention?  Cary Allen Stone, you've hooked me on your guys! Don't stop writing this series!


I was born in 1953 and received a Bachelor of Arts in 1976. In 1972, I started private pilot flying lessons and progressed to Airline Transport Pilot certification in 1978. I taught new students, flew twin-engine charters, corporate jets, and finally airliners like the B727, DC-9, B737, A300, and L1011. I was hired for my first airline job in 1982. I have flown throughout the United States and to foreign countries. One country wanted me to stay longer and kept my crew hostage inside my B727 until the State Department got us released. I currently fly for Southwest Airlines based in Phoenix, Arizona.
Growing up in South Florida, and aviation, has given me a very unique perspective of this
planet we live on. Flying had a lot to do with getting me started with my writing. I was asked one day to fly a Citation jet for a famous film director who was scouting locations in the Caribbean. I spent ten days with Sir Ridley Scott. It was a turning point for me. I had just started to put words to paper. The trip gave me an opportunity to discuss my writing with him. He encouraged me to write and after the trip even reviewed some of my work.
Around 2005, while flying to Orlando, I met a famous movie star onboard and we talked about writing. He and I became collaborators. I wrote a few screenplays. That took me into the Hollywood environment for several years where I learned more about the perspective and technical aspects of the film industry. I had a lot of fun, met a great many celebrities, and even appeared as an extra in “The Dukes” although the final edit only showed the back of my head…twice.
Since then, I have continued to fly and write. I self-publish my books through Amazon and have a great time doing so under my Fine Line Books. I’ve written short stories and have authored a true crime case study of “filicide” titled Through a Mother’s Eyes. And I have written four fictional crime stories. My Jake Roberts series includes: After the Evil, Mind Over Murder,  After the Goode and After the Kill. I also have a cybercrime thriller titled Stealing Atlanta.
In the past, I have also done voice-over commercials, performed a non-speaking role in an AAA travel commercial, and performed stand-up on open mike nights at Bonkerz in Orlando, Punchline and Funny Farm in Atlanta. I once represented the United States with comedy/magic at the Night of Magic in Bogota, Colombia.
My significant other has believed in me through all these years and I couldn’t have done any of it without her. She is still at my side every moment.

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