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Reviewed by Donnie Burgess for Readers' Favorite
Jackson Hardy is a hack writer for the supermarket tabloid, Our Spinning World. He claims to be after the truth, but in this sensationalist rag, bad publicity is what generates sales. His current target is silver screen icon Zachary Bachman, Jr. and his goal is to find a scandal - at any cost. Jackson’s search for a tantalizing headline puts him in contact with an eclectic group of characters. The fawning receptionist, Melodie, his ex-wife, Layla, media darling, Lisandra Clarke, failing starlet, Red Bellaire, and the spectral ‘Madame Blue’ all aid him in his quest in one way or another, but as he soon discovers, not always with his best interests in mind. As he gathers ever more dirt on Bachman, Hardy begins to realize that there may be more to Bachman’s story than just a two-bit hack headline.
Brian C. Baer has a penchant for metaphors and uses them to brilliantly portray the characters and locations in Bad Publicity. Baer has a sharp, concise writing style which allows him to masterfully weave each scene in vivid detail. Bad Publicity is a story worthy of the big screen, with an interesting and unique plot that kept me guessing from start to finish. Each of the characters has a depth that really brought them to life and left me wanting to know more about them. The tantalizing complexity of the characters left me feeling that the story wasn’t quite finished when the last scene ended. With elements of a ghost story, love story, and hard-boiled detective novel, Bad Publicity has a little something for everyone.