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Voice by Joseph Garraty

September 26, 2011

"You get what you pay for don't mean a damn thing."

Local rock band Ragman is finally taking off. Stephanie Case’s flamboyant performances and scorching guitar work have started attracting crowds, and singer John Tsiboukas–aka Johnny Tango–is delivering the best performances of his life. After months of playing to dead rooms, it looks like success is at hand.

The thing is, there’s something wrong with Johnny’s voice. Until just a few weeks ago, he couldn’t hit the right pitch if you painted a target on it and let him stand real close. Now he sounds amazing. . . and strange things happen every time he sings. Lights burn out. Whole rooms become cold and hushed. People get violent.

For Johnny and Case, Ragman is a ticket out of a life of meaningless, dead-end jobs and one lousy gig after another, but as the weirdness surrounding Johnny begins to turn into outright nightmare, they find that the price of stardom might be higher than either of them could ever have imagined.

Full Disclosure: Many thanks to Joseph Garraty for sending me a review copy! My humblest apologies for the extended wait.

I should not have stayed up late to read this. I’m going to have nightmares for weeks.

Having said that, I think I love this book. Narrative ‘voice’ is something Joseph Garraty has in spades , and his will grip you from page one, paragraph one, sentence one. I think it was the only thing that kept me reading because I? Am a huge scardey cat and Voice is creepy on an epic level.

Actually, that’s not entirely true. I kept reading because I became invested in the characters, another thing that I think Mr. Garraty has a real talent for-getting the reader invested. Get the reader to care, then put your characters through hell. Literally. And I’ll be damned if I didn’t cry for them on multiple occasions, even when “the creepy” wasn’t happening. I never thought I’d be so enthralled reading about a band’s every day activities but Mr. Garraty knows how to draw you in and hook you real good. His intimate knowledge isn’t surprising, he is, after all, a musician himself.

I was thoroughly impressed with his depiction of Case, the female guitarist. I always love it when a male author can pull of such a breath-takingly relate-able female character and make it look effortless. I also really liked Quentin and Danny and even John. Though “Johnny” I didn’t so much like as I was majorly creeped out by and it made him a fantastic antagonist. All of the band go through a transition of sorts and it was riveting to watch their transformation to the people they become at the end of the novel-for better or worse.

HEA crowd? This book is so not for you. Everyone else? HAVE AT!

This is an above average debut novel and I personally can’t wait to read more from this author. Now excuse me while I go contact Mr. Garraty as I see he has a new book out and I’m just dying to get my hands on it.

You can purchase Voice at Amazon both in paperback and in the Kindle section, B&N’s Nook section,  or Smashwords!

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