Saturday, June 22, 2013

Heartbalm / Malachi Stone

Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin

Genre: Adult/ Contemporary Fiction

Approximate word count: 85-90,000 words

Kindle  US: YES  UK: YES  Nook: YES  Smashwords: YES  Paper: NO
Click on a YES above to go to appropriate page in Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords store


Malachi Stone is an attorney practicing law in Southern Illinois. He is the author of ten novels and a book of short stories.

“In this darkly comic novel, a sex-addicted attorney in uneasy recovery suffers a major relapse when he hires a sexy secretary, making himself the target of her insanely jealous biker ex-husband, a seven-foot ogre street-named ’Snuggle.’ Ricky's latest client is also his twelve-step sponsor, a psychotic who thinks Walmart is slipping Sani-Flush into his medication and who is charged with committing public indecency at the Santa Claus parade. When Ricky impetuously joins in a threesome with a convenience store clerk and her friend, his life problems multiply.”


Rick Galeer, Attorney at Law, whose primary area of practice was child advocacy, is a sex addict, alcoholic, and methamphetamine abuser. He has been clean for two years, when he falls off the wagon things start going wrong and spirals out of control in a big way. The web of chaos and deception that Ricky finds himself in with  friends, clients, thugs, and a rather nasty detective is cleverly written. The story is told from Rick’s point of view and all of the characters, there are several, are well written and developed as the story progresses. The way each of their stories are woven together was entertaining and sometimes humorous, while at other times tragic.

Rick is a smart man but he listens to the wrong head and finds himself in life-threatening situations. There are several plot twists as the story moves forward getting deeper and deeper into depravity. When Rick finally starts using his brain and remembers some wise advice he slowly starts putting the pieces of this puzzle together, but nobody’s life will ever be the same.

I had a few problems with this book on an editing level. When I came across words like pitcher, ast, and waren’t I decided these were intentional misspellings the author used to convey how his characters sounded when they spoke. I hope anyway because I accepted them as such. However, one of the characters nickname was Drey and I found this character referred to as Drew seven times though out the book. Here is a sample of the way Drey spoke:

"Life sure ain't fair. But you can't never tell, can you? Like for instance this one old dago that still stayed in Washington Park"-she pronounced it Washinton-"even after the niggers got so bad, he was like the next-to-the-last white man left in town, he walks the streets lookin' like a total hobo, with patches on his ass, wearin' this ole busted out World War Two jacket, you'd pitcher him standin' in a cheese line or hangin' around on the sidewalk waitin' for the food pantry to open up? I ast a friend of mine and as it turns out, that ole duffer was the head of the local mafia. Can you believe it?..."

On a believability level, I was willing to suspend my disbelief to allow Rick to speak with his jaw wired shut because he was the main character and he had a lot to say. I loved the dialogue between Heart, his secretary, and him but how do you manage to eat Hamburger Helper with your jaw wired shut?  Is that possible?


“This book contains content considered unsuitable for young readers 17 and under, and which may be offensive to some readers of all ages.” I should also add this book contains racist remarks, sexual situations, and very profane language. I really stepped out of my comfort zone with this book; I think I need to go find a nice book with some unicorns or fairies and a nice quiet corner.   

Format/Typo Issues:

There are a small number of editing errors outside of the language style that some of the characters spoke.

Rating:  **** Four Stars

No comments: