Epiphany Jones by Michael Grothaus
Jerry has a traumatic past that leaves him subject to psychotic hallucinations and depressive episodes. When he stands accused of stealing a priceless Van Gogh painting, he goes underground, where he develops an unwilling relationship with a woman who believes that the voices she hears are from God. Involuntarily entangled in the illicit world of sex-trafficking amongst the Hollywood elite, and on a mission to find redemption for a haunting series of events from the past, Jerry is thrust into a genuinely shocking and outrageously funny quest to uncover the truth and atone for historical sins.
Some books just grab you from the beginning and Epiphany Jones is just such a book. This is proper revenge tragedy, with guts, death, blood, pornography and downright sadism.
Jerry is a sad man. His sister died at a young age, and his father was killed in a car accident in which he was a passenger. Jerry’s sense of guilt leads him to hide away in the dark watching porn and having conversations with people who are not there; figments of his porn addled brain.
He is the archetypal anti-hero, living a small, angry, disappointing life.
Suddenly his miserable life is turned upside down when he is accused of stealing a priceless work of art and of the murder of its curator. And this is where we meet the avenging angel who is the eponymous Epiphany Jones. Dark, amazing, sexy, Epiphany takes hold of Jerry’s life and hauls him well out of his gloomy comfort zone. Epiphany is driven by her communications with God. She knows what has to be done, and she is absolutely convinced that Jerry is the man who must do it, whether he wants to or not.
In a writing tour de force she turns our reluctant anti-hero into a powerful force for good, taking on the despicable world of sex traffickers; taking down drug dealers and finally, laying bare the Hollywood culture that was ultimately responsible for everything that has been rotten about Jerry’s life.
He does not turn into Superman; rather Grothaus takes our reluctant hero, blackmailed into travelling across country; bullied into taking on dangerous villains and with humour and finely crafted dialogue, turns Jerry from anti-hero into a man we cheer on to succeed and become a true hero. This is a real bobby dazzler book with its roots in the finest dramatic traditions, made new for the 21st century.
Epiphany Jones is a compelling read and a very worthy addition to the already very impressive stable of authors at Orenda Books.
Epiphany Jones was published by Orenda Books on 16th May 2016