Ten Things About People and Cars

Part One of 52 Things, a Novel

Fiction - Humor/Comedy
68 Pages
Reviewed on 08/31/2020
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Stephen Batt has been a truck driver in Britain, a chairlift operator in Canada, a bricklayer, carpenter, and punk rock guitarist in Germany, an advertising executive in Australia, a company director, car salesman, technology salesman, director of film and television and award-winning screenwriter in New Zealand, a painter in France, and an optioned, but sadly un-produced screenwriter in Los Angeles.

He discovered that wherever you go there’s potential for tragedy, comedy, struggle and fun, sometimes all at the same time. Many of the people he’s met are wonderful, and smart, and witty, and kind. Many aren’t. At least half are idiots. Some are dangerous and cruel. Boo. Most are decent. Yay.

Stephen currently lives in Auckland, New Zealand, where he writes, dabbles in art and design, and doesn’t go out much unless the weather’s really nice.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite

Ten Things About People and Cars: Part One of 52 Things, a Novel is a humorous detective fiction novel written by Stephen Batt. Who murdered FBI Special Agent Larry Grimes? His best friend and fellow agent, Boris Jacobson, was determined to find out -- whether he was actually assigned to the case or not. The two had been virtually inseparable for the last fifteen years, and if anyone had the knowledge to work the case, Jacobson did. Fortunately, his boss, Mark Black, the Special Agent in Charge for San Diego, had already realized that Jacobson was committed to the task, and he had already set the assignment in motion. Using FBI techniques and his own style of exceptional investigating, Jacobson got to work. He began looking for clues in Grimes’ own files. There were hundreds, even thousands of clues to consider, threads to be pulled to see what comes out. Jacobson became a man obsessed, driven by the need to understand what happened. After a sanity break, he returned to his task with a fresher outlook. Connections. He needed to make the connections that turned all the amassed details and clues into a road map. And that is what he began to do.

Ten Things About People and Cars sets out ten of the vital connections FBI Agent Jacobson susses out as a result of his investigation, each one, in this case, concerning cars. I’ve no doubt that anyone who’s ever perused a car magazine, or chortled at the antics of the Top Gear (now Grand Tour) crew will enjoy each and every one of these tales as much as I did. The cars highlighted and the trivia surrounding them are fabulous, even the one dubbed “the worst car in the world” -- and yes, fans and detractors alike of Jeremy Clarkson will actually hear him make this droll pronouncement as they read it. The connections between each story are sly, thought-provoking and often quite funny, and each story is told in a smooth and conversational style. I’m looking forward to the next installment of Agent Jacobson’s connections. Ten Things About People and Cars: Part One of 52 Things, a Novel is most highly recommended.

Samantha Gregory

Stephen Batt's 10 Things About People and Cars: Part One of 52 Things, a Novel is a collection of stories tied together by the main character and the car they own or come into contact with. Each story has a unique person driving it and the stories dip into a moment in their lives, painting a picture of who they are and what is happening in their lives. There are ties to crime and each one has a purpose. They are tied together through a case about a dead FBI agent who had a peculiar way of looking at the evidence. After his death, his partner adopts his method to solve the case. There are some questionable people involved and others who are dragged into it through no fault of their own or who feel they have a duty to family.

Stephen Batt has created an engaging collection of stories with 10 Things About People and Cars. Each character is well developed and I enjoyed reading the stories. I liked seeing how each one unfolded and the idea of a common thread, with the cars, tied things nicely together. I think it could do quite well on the market for crime and humor fans. Shorter books are quite popular now and this could easily be enjoyed on a commute or during a lunch break. The stories did leave me wanting to read more. I particularly liked Little Red Corvette and Dead Nana Storage. I would definitely recommend Stephen Batt's 10 Things About People and Cars.