Jake Wolfram is the biggest, slickest, sickest pop star of our time. Drug-dealing voyeuristic punk, Jake, is yanked from poverty and into the white-hot spotlight after witnessing a crime committed by his neighbor, Damien Tungsten, front man for the boy band, In Dreams. Jake lives life on the run, hiding in the limelight, and resenting every single minute of it. He’s relentlessly pursued by his former friend, psychopathic visual artist, Patrick Salinger, who coerces Jake into helping him turn a grisly murder into a masterpiece. Seizing control of the power he craves, Jake disposes of Damien, confronts Patrick, and lives a bad-boy rock-and-roll lifestyle as he hijacks Damien’s super-stardom. But Damien’s not quite ready to let it go.
S.S. Michaels’ debut novel Idols and Cons tells the tale of the lengths some people will go in order to become famous. Some do it for the fortune, some for the glory and yet some want the recognition purely to change who they once were in order to make, what they see as, a better life for themselves. Idols and Cons is told in the first person , however, there are several storytellers. There are three main narrators who, each with their own chapter, deliver the details of the story to us. John, later known as Jake, a 15 year old artistic drug dealer who ended up looking in the wrong place at the wrong time. Patrick, a neighbor, who is an artist always out looking for the artistic niche what will lead him to the ranks of notoriety. Finally, we have Damien, yet another neighbor and the leader of a boy band who is greatly enjoying his time in the limelight. All three are linked together in the death and cover-up of a young girl’s murder, the question that remains is who, if any, will crack first and allow the truth to come out. There are a couple other side characters that narrate a chapter or two, as well, but John/Jake, Patrick and Damien are the primary deliverers of story.
The twist and turns within the narrative of Idols and Cons are both intriguing and disgusting. The tale itself pulled me right in and I found myself trying to guess time and time again how things would turn out. For me, this desire to try to figure the ending out myself is the mark of a well written thriller. Michaels not only has a great talent for the gruesome and disturbing, but she has some wonderfully comedic elements intertwined, as well.
I thoroughly enjoyed Idols and Cons and definitely recommend it to readers who enjoy a good thriller with elements of twisted gore and humor.
Pick up your copy of Idols and Cons via Amazon in either paperback or Kindle versions by clicking the cover image above. For Barnes and Noble paperback or nook shoppers click (HERE)
Learn more about the author by checking out her website Slush Pile Hero where you can find out what she is currently up to and how to contact her with feedback after you have picked up and read Idols and Cons. You can also follow S.S. Michaels on Twitter: @S_S_Michaels
Espresso rating: Triple