Wielding his humor like a scalpel in the hands of a world renown surgeon, Rob Rosen sends down a raucous, quirky new comedy/romance story called Sort of Dead. Featuring a drag queen and some exceptionally well-endowed men, living and dead, this novel is one insane moment of brilliant comedy writing after another. If you aren’t familiar with Rosen’s work, then you will find this story to be just a hair short of crazy, but let me tell you, the journey he takes you on is well worth the time.
Nord (Nordstrom—he was born in a Nordstrom’s department store) wakes up one morning to clouds rather than a ceiling, naked rather than clothed, and lying beside a handsome man, Max, whom he has never met before. Max becomes Nord’s guide in a place that Nord christens as Arby’s (his favorite restaurant because of the jamocha shakes, apparently), which is a halfway place where spirits who have unfinished business await the final “poof” that will send them on their way. Nord learns that while Max knew his own death was imminent (due to him having advanced leukemia), Nord lost his rather abruptly, by being shot in the back while at work. Once the two of them work out that they can communicate via a connection with a psychic found on Yelp, the race is on to discover who did the deed that landed Nord at, uhm, Arby’s.
First, they go back to Max’s former apartment where they discover Clark who, shall we say, enjoys self-gratification—a lot. He is a computer geek and just what Nord needs to figure out what was on his computer that got him killed. From there, the two ghosts tell Clark to get the help of a medium so they can communicate their needs more effectively, since trying to type out directions drains both Max and Nord way too quickly, sending them back to…Arby’s. Enter Voltan from Yelp—or Lewis as he is actually named. The two men hit it off immediately, an investigation ensues with Nord taking the lead, and a friend from Arby’s (Bruce) tagging along. It is all insanely hilarious, just shy of crazy, and the most entertaining story I have read in a long time.
Needless to say, the five main characters get into some very tight spots as they uncover a major plot and so much more. This novel races to the finish with each piece of the puzzle falling slowly into place and keeping the reader guessing pretty much up until the end. But it’s the love story, or really stories, that put the icing on this cake. Do Nord and Max go “poof” together? Does Clark give up his lonely life to date Lewis? Well, to tell you that would spoil the ending, but I will say that regardless of who gets to stay together, this book it is so worth the time it takes to find out. I love how silly and happy this book makes me feel, and I hope you do as well.