Done by Fran Lewis
Dead Comic Standing
Reviewed by Fran Lewis
Some people think laughter is wrong. Others think that comedians are detrimental to the world and their own good. What happens when someone decides to knock off those that try and make us laugh? What would happen if there were no more funny men or women in the world? What would happen if the world were devoid of comics and the Last Man Standing had no one else waiting in line after him to make us smile? But, Dave Feener had no idea that when he left the stage it would be his last time and neither did Phil Vetters. Dave tore down the house at Laff Attak and Phil at Comedy F/X the clubs where they performed and neither realized that they were giving their final performance. The killer decided that neither man was funny but there would be more before the final joke was told and the killer was hopefully caught.
But, someone feels that he is the new comic critic and the body count is about to rise and the police department is on the look out for someone that feels comics need to die. When one of the police officer’s brother’s is the next victim, a young hopeful finds himself in critical care but the police get to the hospital too late no one realizes this guy is hiding in plain sight. Added to that the author brilliantly allows the reader to hear the inner thoughts and the killer’s rationale for murdering everyone including his feelings for his murder who just happens to be one his victims.
As Jeff the manager of Laff Attak and Shelly a comedian get closer the killer becomes more enraged and has his own plans for both of them as he watches from a distance and goes unnoticed. Comic F/X and Laff Attak seem to be the two clubs he is targeting for now. What will happen next and will anyone not die laughing? Constables Mike Borneo and Lissa Cassway along with Phil’s brother detective Vince Vetters are racing the clock to find this serial killer before he strikes again. Seeing his brother’s body, having to inform his family and his wife’s family of Phil’s death was hard enough. However, he won’t stop until he finds this guy takes him in and gets the revenge he so rightly wants to inflict on him. Stab wounds made with different knives and victims killed because they don’t make him laugh the comedians in this town need definite protection.
The comics left standing wanted to ban together and have a fundraiser to help the families of the victims but the killer knew that too. His plan would be carried out during the festivities and the end result if not stopped catastrophic for more than just those trying to help and the comedians. Added to that the people of Edmonton needed to be on the alert at all times for this crazy man and the mayor and police chief wanted answers. The heat was rising on the police department and the comics.
The manager of one of the clubs knifed and more bodies on the rise as everyone prepared for the fest hoping big named comics would be present. But, the killer decided to give the police a run for their money and killed an older comedian and as usual left the night’s playbill next to the victim, which should have alerted them to the fact that he might be part of the audience. But, Shelly is attacked on her way out of the club; a Good Samaritan helps her and turns up out of nowhere.
The fun part of the novel is that the author created dialogues and routines for each comedian so you can decide for yourself which ones are really funny and which are not causing the killer to eliminate them. Hearing the killer’s rage when someone is arrested for assaulting Shelly and thinking he was the real killer sent him on quest for another victim. Alternating locations should have tipped the cops off but our killer who is always right in front of them seems to be clever enough to be invisible. Another victim, this time a woman comedian was killed but the killer was seen by a group of kids during the attack. Was he slipping? Would this finally be his first mistake? Evidence left at the scene but his master plan still in place. If this man succeeds the end result would be worse than an earthquake or hurricane. Just how all the pieces of the script get put together and how they nail this guy you just won’t believe. As the clues come into place and one person’s memory remembers a face and the snapshot comes into focus the killer just might be caught. Wait until you find out why he did it? This you just won't believe and the end result ? I can't tell you that or I will give away the ending or as a good comic would say THE PUNCH LINE.
Filled with humor, comedy routines, characters that blend well together a police department that does its job and listens to its witnesses, this book is filled with twists, turns and surprises not only for the reader but just maybe for the killer too. Laughter helps you feel better when stress seems to be on the menu during the day. Comedians sometimes pick on audience members just for fun or we hope for fun. Some comedians can get out of control and others just choose their marks and you have to hope the person in the audience has quick comebacks and a sense of humor. From the author of Dead On Arrival once again Karen Vaughan gets it better than right. This book is a quick read for anyone that wants to laugh, feel like they are in a comedy club even though you are reading a book and of course understanding that NO ONE SHOULD DIE LAUGHING OR TRYING TO MAKE OTHERS LAUGH TOO!
Fran Lewis: REVIEWER
THIS BOOK GETS FIVE FUNNY JOKES FOR FIVE GREAT COMICS: OF COURSE: FIVE GOLD PLAYBILLSRating: [5 of 5 Stars!]