Author: Graham Parke
Publisher: Outskirts Press Inc
ISBN: 978-1-4327-5248-4

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Graham Parke's most recent novel, formatted as a blog, features Gomez Porter and a supporting cast of appealing socially awkward quirky characters. Gomez is the owner of an antique store, which he inherited from his parents. Unfortunately, Gomez knows very little about the purchasing and selling of antiques and just manages to keep his store afloat. In order to earn extra cash, he participates in an experimental drug trial, where he meets and becomes infatuated with a sweet lab assistant, whom he calls, Dr. Hargrove.

However, events take on crisis proportions, when one of the participants in the drug trial, Joseph Miller is found comatose in his apartment and is not discovered for days. When Gomez confronts Dr. Hargrove and asks if this had something to do with the trial, she assures him that they are not testing any dangerous drugs, “not by a long shot.” Unfortunately, Miller subsequently dies and the detective investigating his death goes missing. After awhile, he is likewise found dead. In addition, another trial participant, a Mr. Ferguson, also dies. Now all of these deaths should have been worrisome to Dr. Hargrove. However, such is not the case. Gomez decides to find out what is happening and discovers a few clues contained in Miller's popular meat packing blog, which he passes onto Detective Norton, who is later replaced by Detective Moran.

And to add a little more drama to the yarn, Dr. Hargrove confesses to Gomez that lately she has a growing feeling of discomfort and believes that someone is stalking her. Gomez is now overjoyed with the possibility of helping her and getting to know her more intimately. In addition, he may discover some very interesting information concerning the deaths of the trial participants. He agrees to stalk the stalker or as Dr. Hargrove states: she will have her own “stalker-stalker.”

Readers are sure to enjoy a rollicking good time with No Hope for Gomez, as Parke works his offbeat magic prose with cutting comic takes on a variety of topics, such as drug trials conducted by pharmaceutical companies, the business of antique dealers and the oddball purchases made by some customers, the unusual blogs found on the Internet, contemporary relationships, lovable losers, and authors who sincerely believe they have produced a masterpiece worthy of a Pulitzer prize, even though the book will put you to sleep within the first few pages.

Much of the richness of No Hope for Gomez lies in its jocular conversational bantering and some extremely witty and clever writing that contain keen insights into human nature. Parke is a gifted author with his innovative and refreshing talent of spinning a tale, and even manages to invent substantive characters out of his comic creations. Although Parke may not as yet be a household name, it is clear that he is likely to develop into a popular writer and hopefully he will continue to churn out some more great novels.

Click Here To Read Norm's Interview With Graham Parke

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