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Temp Like Me
Are sinister activities occurring in the temporary employment industry? At companies where temps are utilized, do full-time employees treat the temps like second class citizens? Can a senseless murder be solved?
Following a homicide in Willam Johnson’s own family, he is determined to use his investigative and acting skills to find the killer. He has a lead and goes undercover in the world of Day Labor to find the murderer and see that justice is served. This story takes profit-sharing to an entirely new level. During this journey, he also discovers something unexpected--a new respect for people who are down on their luck, treated disrespectfully, and live daily with extreme prejudice against them.
Written in first person, in Temp Like Me we always know what Willam is thinking, viewing and digesting. We know his every thought about his lovely partner in life, wife Kathy. This is an intriguing read that digs far more deeply than simply solving a murder mystery. It introduces us to a man whose southern roots have formed a typical habitual bias and how his undercover temp experience enables him to view, on multiple levels, life from a very different perception.
In my own southern lineage, I recall hearing relatives make racist comments that were unnecessary and horrifying as I consider their words today. Author, Gary Lucas, reminds us that it’s always enlightening to, even figuratively, walk in someone else’s shoes for awhile.
A murder in the family makes it personal. What slows down the chase is being caught between a small change robbery and a shot from a small caliber handgun that ends with debilitating consequences for Willam. Against everyone’s best advice, he is up and about too soon, but not soon enough for Willam, as the man he now knows is the killer stays just out of reach.
Enter the Temp business, where the killer has a past, sidekicking with someone who has a talent for making temps work for more than daily pay. Under the cover of a day laborer, Willam’s plan is to work and wait. But someone else has a creative plan, too. And yet another person thinks he’s the one with a plan. Now there are too many people who want to temp in Willam’s P. I. shoes, and he’s had enough. After all, there can only be one Temp Like Me. Or maybe…
Getting to know Temp Like Me:
In the words of Gary Lucas, the background of this book is:
“One of my clients, for whom I did sales training for their staff in 18 markets in the southeast, was a temp agency who recruited and placed day laborers and some skilled and semi-skilled workers into day, short term, long term or permanent positions. I'd had many years experience in the staffing industry and had seen everything from fights to car theft in and around the waiting rooms (halls) to the same and more from workers at jobsites.”
Gary’s answer to my question that asks about the uniqueness of this book:
“The title ties in the backgrounds of my two protagonists, both from the south, each having grown up learning different points of view about integration, racial conflicts and common to one, repulsive to the other, racial epithets. Willam (no second i), the PI from Asheville, NC has to go undercover to search for clues about thefts, killings and bribes perpetrated on temp workers, client company employees, and others from someone on the "inside" of the Day Labor business. His views are less than contemporary regarding race. His wife however, who, unknowingly of course, always says the title of each novel somewhere in the story, explains the realities she'd grown up to know and respect. She offers her insights and refers to passages in a book titled "Black Like Me" by John Howard Griffin. In it, he exposes what it is like to be black in the Deep South.
So, it is, as with all my novels in this series, a who done it, catch the so-and-so story while enjoying the banter, thoughts, actions and in general the special relationship between egos, characteristics, perceptions, intuitiveness and personalities of Willam and Kathy.”
About the Author:
Gary Lucas has been writing in the advertising business for 30 years. He was born at the water’s edge in Miami, Florida and has lived both there and in the mountains of North Carolina his whole life. Professionally, he has traveled extensively along the eastern seaboard and has included cities and towns he particularly liked as important locales for his stories.
His favorite fiction writer is John D. MacDonald who wrote the Travis McGee series. Taken from years of enjoyment with his writing style, Lucas does not go overboard with forensics or detailed police procedures in his writing. Instead, he writes in a fast-moving and easy to read and follow way, developing compelling characters that readers can get to love or hate.
He began writing short stories and poetry in the 90’s and in 2000 published his first novel, Rotten at the Core. He has since written and published Abracadaver and Mayhem & Main. This series features a contemporary private investigator and an intuitive, almost psychic wife who, many reviewers have said, is the real central character.
Learn more about Gary and his books at http://www.lucastories.com.
Come on back and see us again soon!
Mary Anne Benedetto
Author, Speaker, Certified Lifewriting Instructor
Founder of Beach Author Network