Monday, January 24, 2011


I know the name "Proof" comes from somewhere else when it refers to a single run printing of a potential book, but it seems so apt that it also serves as proof a book is real. Maybe it's just one of those serendipitous language miracles.
Either way, the "proof" of the new book, Borrowed Trouble, arrived in the mail today. That can only mean release is imminent. Prepare yourselves for the promotional onslaught, or the best onslaught I can manage on my own, not being a PR person or one who even much enjoys thrusting myself into the spotlight.

As an opening salvo I offer what others have said about the book. The people we hand selected to read an advance copy of the book were all so generous with their time and their words we thank them very sincerely. Frankly we were blown away by the nice things people had to say. If all goes well there will be more to come. Not a bad way to start off though, is it?

"Meticulous historical detail slams you into the hard boiled world of Ray Ward and Dean Fokoli as they use hard fists and cold steel to knock the shiny off Hollywood's glitter. Borrowed Trouble is like a talented fighter – powerful, quick, and hard to put down." 
Rebecca Cantrell, award-winning author of A Night of Long Knives
"For a knockout punch of hardboiled, look no further than Borrowed Trouble, sequel to the period noir One Too Many Blows To The Head. You'll want to go the distance with Ray Ward, a tough-luck protagonist who knows how to hit where it counts!" 
Kelli Stanley, award-winning author of City of Dragons
"Everyone has a short list of books that stayed with them long after they turned the last page—add Borrowed Trouble to mine. Eric Beetner and J.B. Kohl have vividly re-created 1941 Los Angeles, ripping apart the city’s glamorous façade to reveal the cold noir heart beneath. With sharp writing, head-spinning twists, and pair of protagonists haunted by memory and loss, this is pulp fiction at its finest."
Hilary Davidson, author of The Damage Done
Borrowed Trouble is the hard hitting sequel to Kohl & Beetner’s noir knockout debut  One Too Many Blows To The Head. It grabs you by the lapels from the first page and drags you out of the murky corners of Kansas City’s underbelly and into a glittering Hollywood where the bright lights cast sordid and sinister shadows.”
Paul D. Brazill, crimewriter, The Mammoth Book of Best British Crime
“An intriguing tale of two outsiders thrust unwillingly into the dark side of 1941 Hollywood. A seamless collaboration, rich with explosive dialogue and scenes so vivid, Kohl and Beetner takes the reader on a compelling journey. Rich with prose that packs a powerful punch, Borrowed Trouble is not to be missed.” 
Deborah J Ledford, author of Staccato and Snare
"It’s 1941 and noir’s hot new duo, Kohl and Beetner, return with another sure-fire winner. Borrowed Trouble is a relentlessly tough and lean novel, packed full with memorable characters. United by their troubled pasts, the unlikely pairing of PI Dean Fokoli and troubled boxing promoter, Ray Ward, head from Kansas City to Hollywood to untangle a dark tale of greed and exploitation, but ultimately one which offers them both a shot at personal redemption. They don’t write them like this anymore. Jump onboard now."
Nick Quantrill, author of Broken Dreams

The two sister books meet each other for the first time. Quite a pair. If this writing thing all goes south I might try my hand at book jacket design. I feel quite proud of these. Once again kudos go to Marc Sasso who painted the cover of One Too Many Blows To The Head and put up with my stifling of his creativity by giving him a reference photo and saying, "Do this but with blood." He is a much more talented illustrator than this. Don't believe me? Click that link up there. 
And to the anonymous painter of the image that adorns Borrowed Trouble, thanks for you and all your ilk who provided a look to the sordid words of pulp fiction. I tried like hell to find out who it was but couldn't. Either way it is an homage to the pulps of the past and a perfect image for the book. How did you know when you were painting it 50+ years ago?