The Breaking of Goody Boothe by Joshua Lohrius

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"By uniting J.D. Salinger and Quentin Tarentino, Lohrius offers a heady, page-turning read ride with street cred." - Kirkus Indie Review

Goody Boothe is a 15-year-old prodigy torn between a repressive mom, a cadre of ultra-wealthy new friends charmed by his inner city roots and a Machiavellian cousin who exploits him as a criminal accomplice. It isn’t until he finds a 60s hippie manual called The Kingdom of Laughter that a new trip begins. The results are quietly psychedelic, shamelessly erotic and, at times, maybe even a little cataclysmic.

If he thought about it real hard, Goody Boothe might wish he were more like other kids his age. But the 15-year-old athletic prodigy and TV-junkie doesn’t think about it. He doesn’t think about anything, really. His mother does his thinking for him. And her only concern is getting him into college at any cost.

Goody’s older cousin Van Maroon, meanwhile, is committed to taking life by the throat and shaking its pockets until they’re empty. His life is an elaborate web of low-grade drug deals, prostitute robberies, stolen adult toys and B&Es, and although he’s haunted by a promiscuous and drunken mother, excruciating insomnia and a potential obsessive compulsive disorder, Van does all he can to enlighten his dear cousin about the ways of the world. This usually means dragging Goody along for his myriad colorful business deals around the city’s unseemly underbelly.

It isn’t until Goody gets his hands on a copy of Dr. Galaxy Valentine’s, The Roadmap: Finding Peace, Happiness and the Kingdom of Laughter – a psychedelic hippie manual from the 60s – that he re-evaluates his existence and entire value system, uttering the prophetic words, “I’m not sure, but I think my life might suck.”

Following this profound moment of self-examination, Goody finds himself barreling through a world of new experiences – a scholarship to a fancy private day school, a roll over the hood of a car at 60 mph, a billionaire girlfriend, a run-in with a Vietnamese crime syndicate, a state wrestling championship and auto-erotica-electrocution – until he is able to find the chance to do something he’s never been able to do before. Goody Boothe takes control of his life.
And it just might be the worst thing that ever happened to Van Maroon.

About Joshua Lohrius

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Published January 6, 2012 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. 274 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction

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The novel’s first-person narrative works well as it alternates between Van and Goody, but it often suffers from an overdose of hyperbole.

Mar 15 2012 | Read Full Review of The Breaking of Goody Boothe

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