Fan Mail

Fiction - Thriller - General
367 Pages
Reviewed on 09/02/2023
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Having been in education for forty-seven years as a teacher, coach, counselor and administrator, Joseph Lewis has retired. He is an award-winning author and uses his psychology and counseling background to craft thriller/crime/detective mysteries with a strong coming-of-age theme embedded within. He has taken creative writing and screen writing courses at UCLA and USC, and his books have won nearly 20 awards.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite

Fan Mail by Joseph Lewis is a compelling coming-of-age tale that crosses the suspense genre with an LGBTQ theme. They say blood is thicker than water, but could it apply to Brian who is an adopted child? His foster siblings, Randy and Bobby, along with their fellow band member and best friend, Danny, receive fan mail that becomes increasingly threatening. They don't pay attention to it until the sender notches up the game, causing the boys to spiral into a world of danger and taking its toll on their friendship. There might be jealousy involved, but the boys never imagined that it would be taken to such an extreme. Brian has already saved the lives of his brothers once during an unforgettable event in Arizona that left him with a deep emotional scar. Will he risk his life for them once again, now that someone out there is making wrong choices that disrupt the lives of the people he loves?

Some stories remain with you for a while and others for a lifetime. Fan Mail is likely to endure, as it is the type of novel that becomes popular by word of mouth. The plot grabs your attention, and it will not let you go until the last page. It's the kind of story that is perfect for a film adaptation to draw a mass audience of young adults. It is very much a part of the obsession or stalker film genre, which is truly creepy because it is a type of horror that exists in real life. It has a touching message to the young about the importance of family, which is conveyed effectively as Joseph Lewis devotes time to exploring his characters. The climax works rather well. There are many reasons why you should read this book.

Keith Mbuya

The recent events seemed too much for Jeremy, a counselor at Waukesha North High School, Milwaukee, to handle, causing him to suffer a heart attack and be hospitalized. Two of his seven sons were receiving threats through the mail, demanding that they quit a music band they had joined called Bits and Pieces. He also discovers secrets about five of his adopted sons that threaten to break his family apart. Jeremy and his wife had involved the local detectives to investigate the threats. The detectives find three leads during their inquiries, all involving Danny, the leader of Bits and Pieces, and his father Jeff, a successful author. Previously, the boys had survived an explosion after a soccer match at a local stadium in Milwaukee. The results of the investigations show that the explosion had targeted Jeff. Did all this have anything to do with the author and will the detectives solve the mystery? Find out more in Fan Mail by Joseph Lewis.

Joseph Lewis hatches an engrossing plot in this enthralling read. He anchors the storyline on a tale of teenage drama, family, relationships, love, passion, envy, and secrets. The cast’s conflicts are built on real-life themes, ranging from parenthood to sexual orientation. Fan Mail is like a mirror held up to contemporary society, brilliantly reflecting and portraying our lives, struggles, troubles, delicate relationships, and so much more. His vivid depictions excited my imagination and made the reading entrancing. Lewis kept me on edge with suspense and drama. His brilliant way of bringing out the characters' qualities made the reading experience feel like being on a rollercoaster of intense emotions. This made it easy for me to connect, empathize with, and experience the individual lives of the large cast. Some of the scenes left me hurt, while others made my heart melt with joy.

Grace Ruhara

Fan Mail by Joseph Lewis is a dramatic and thrilling novel that will juggle your emotions between excitement and sympathy. It is also a clear reflection of an ideal family set-up consisting of fights, laughter, and most importantly, love. An anonymous fan has been sending rude and life-threatening letters to Danny, Bobby, and Randy, who are part of a band. The letters stress the family members to the extent of causing their father Jeremy to have a heart attack. A month before the heart attack, there had been a car bomb explosion that the detectives feared might be linked to the letters. Who could this anonymous and daring person be? What is their next move? Do they end up hurting more people, or are they caught before the next sinister action?

There are so many aspects I liked about Fan Mail by Joseph Lewis. Among them is the dialogue. I empathized with the characters' emotions, feelings, and thoughts from the conversations. They were so intense that I found myself almost crying. I also liked the development of Brian's character as caring, a leader with a selfless nature, and a loving brother. Despite being hurt by his brothers, he lets go of his feelings and brings them together in the most devastating times. He calms them down and tries to be strong for them. The fact that he is always ready to risk his life to save his brothers is commendable. This is an interesting character that I would like to emulate. Lewis is a tremendous storyteller and I recommend this novel to readers who love thrillers, family dramas, and police investigations since it includes all three. It will have them entertained in every scene.

Alma Boucher

Fan Mail is a thriller by Joseph Lewis. A close-knit family threatens to fall apart when the father is admitted to the hospital with a heart condition. Seven adopted boys grew up as brothers, but they are starting to turn on each other. Randy, Bobby, and Danny receive disquieting fan mail in which the person makes it clear that Randy and Bobby must leave the band where they are members. The person believes they are holding Danny back and that Danny will do much better on his own. Some of the brothers do not feel loved and welcome in the family anymore. Brian almost lost his life in Arizona while protecting his family. Brian wonders if he must put his life on the line again for his family if the menacing fan mail demands it. The threats intensify and the family must start working together to find the person responsible.

This thriller was out of this world. It was fast-paced and full of action. Fan Mail was a nail-biting reading experience for me. I could not even put it down for a minute. I had to keep turning the pages. Joseph Lewis is an excellent writer who kept me engrossed in this story. The storyline is complex and interesting. Lewis used the characteristics of the individuals to make the writing true to life. Who would have thought that seven adopted brothers could live together in harmony and care so much for each other? The relationships between the brothers was real and sincere. The characters were brilliantly developed and authentic. Each brother had a traumatic past that built his character into the person he is now.