Friday 29 March 2013


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Ray Tompkins is the kind of person you never get to know. He's the security guard, the factory worker, the man working the midnight shift. Nobody really understands Ray - not his coworkers, not his family, and certainly not the women in his life. There is a rage building inside Ray Tompkins and Los Angeles is the fuel - the sick obsession with celebrity mixed with the vacuousness of everyday life. Against this backdrop, Ray Tompkins finds a way to vent his anger. He, too, will be known.

This was quite an uncomfortable book to read. Ray Tompkins is a man with few friends and a difficult relationship with his family. He meanders through life working a succession of low-paid jobs until he inevitably gets fired from one and moves on to the next. He’s a guy with limited ambition and little interest in drink, drugs or sex. When he attempts to forge a connection with a woman or girl, he’s little or nothing to offer them.......he’s an invisible poster-boy for mediocrity and under-achievement.

Ray tires of the status quo and after transferring his unrequited affections and infatuations from a college student into a passionate hatred for Hollywood’s latest Golden Boy and flavour of the month; he at last shows a measure of ambition and tries to prove himself worthy of attention.

If I’m truthful I can’t see Baum troubling the best seller lists with this type of book, as I don’t believe it has mass appeal. Who wants to spend time reading about inadequacy and low self-esteem, apart from me?

Interesting and enjoyable and it made a change from the norm.

4 from 5

I got my copy from the website of Another Sky Press

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  1. Col - This one does indeed sound different to the norm. And it provides a look at the 'behind the scenes' lives of those 'invisible' people we never really think about very much. On that score alone it sounds interesting.

    1. Margot, I probably wouldn't be in a mad rush to read this author again, but I wouldn't exclude him either. A bit difficult to pigeon-hole really, but it ticked a different box for sure.