Bleach | Blackout by David S. Grant
David S. Grant is the author of Corporate Porn, Emotionless Souls, and The Last Breakfast. His current book is the double novel Bleach|Blackout from Offense Mechanism, an imprint of Silverthought Press.. Bleach tells the tale of coming back home for the holidays to find decadence that forces a look inside. Blackout is a dark comedy with the theme of living moment to moment. A story about living.
Fans of fluffy romance novels and that all too familiar, over hyped, edge of the seat crap should steer clear. This is life at its most jaded. David S. Grant presents Bleach, a story about New Year’s Eve, drugs, sex, the corporate crunch and the inevitable unpleasantness of life and death.
Bleach opens during the last 60 seconds of 2003 in a bathroom where a girl lay dying and a jaded 30-year-old named Jeremy, who navigates the reader through the endless repulsiveness of the world, watches. Before diving into an explanation of what the is going on, Jeremy doubles back eight days.
In Jeremy’s daily life, he endures the annoying drone of office chatter and nonsensical corporate speak in the fast paced world of business finance. But, today is Friday, the kick-off to the late-December holidays, and Jeremy is heading back to Wisconsin. For two weeks he plans to reminisce about old times with his best friends, Chip and Stoner. Only, this time is different. Jeremy walks around with a recently diagnosed brain tumor, though he is not too worried. The doctor gave him an 80 percent chance for a full recovery after he undergoes surgery, but will he make it back to New York?
Jeremy tries to make amends with the apparent uselessness of life. His old friends ease his mind, and they careen through the next eight days in a whirlwind of hilarious predicaments, shady characters and abnormal, sometimes disturbing, conversations.
The entire story builds up to the climax of the “The Party” on New Year’s Eve where all the men are dressed as prostitutes, all the women look like pimps and decadence and debauchery dictate the rules. As the party gets into full swing, Jeremy suffers a major trauma, apparently brought on by his medical condition, while his girlfriend overdoses on a bad batch of psychedelic mushrooms. Everything seems to be spiraling out of control, and Jeremy realizes there are no guarantees for him or anyone else.
Blackout picks up two years after Bleach in Las Vegas where Stoner and friends are celebrating his bachelor party complete with strippers and crack cocaine. The ride home is blurry and the next morning in Los Angeles brings a surprise when Stoner’s friends, Chip and Jeremy, wake to find police officers and a dead body they are allegedly responsible for. The problem, neither remember anything from the Thai hooker filled night before.
The initial thought is “What would Steven Tyler do?”, but it’s too late, Chip is charged for murder and his trial is being fast tracked.
Meanwhile, Stoner has shaved his head and is contemplating a new tattoo, Sharon Winkler appears to be running a brothel, and Jeremy is shacked up in a Motel and is so exhausted and full of booze he doesn’t hear a murder in the room next to him.
The trial is anything, but normal. Chip’s lead witness, Stoner is murdered and the judge may or may not be mad crazy. To make matters worse, the court room is full of celebrity distractions and Chip’s attorney, Mr. Stone doesn’t appear to be the most competent of trial lawyers.
The court session ends with Chip exonerating himself the only way he knows how, with hard, physical evidence. Once Chip is cleared of all charges, the story turns to revenge of Stoner’s killer. Blackout concludes with a showdown involving a jealous actor, a drug dealer, and a sit down with Nic Cage.
Underneath the stories of hangovers and death, Blackout is a story about living. Living for the moment and having a story to tell. A fast-paced ride that will leave you wanting more, and just maybe a cold beer.