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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Book "King Biscuit" by Michael Loyd Gray

About the Book: In King Biscuit, Michael Loyd Gray returns once again to his fictional burg of tiny Argus, Illinois, (the setting of his novels Well Deserved and Not Famous Anymore), to tell a coming of age story set in 1966. With the Vietnam War hovering in the background. Seventeen-year-old Billy Ray Fleener, frustrated by the narrow confines of Argus, seeks adventure and a look at the wider world in a novel that puts him on a collision course with the famous as well as infamous.

About the Author: Michael Loyd Gray was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas, but grew up in Champaign, Illinois. He earned a MFA in English from Western Michigan University and taught at colleges and universities in upstate New York, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Texas. He graduated from the University of Illinois with a Journalism degree and was a newspaper staff writer in Arizona and Illinois for ten years, conducting the last interview with novelist Erskine Caldwell.
He is the winner of the 2005 Alligator Juniper Fiction Prize and the 2005 The Writers Place Award for Fiction. Gray's novel Well Deserved won the 2008 Sol Books Prose Series Prize. His novel Not Famous Anymore was awarded a grant by the Elizabeth George Foundation and was published by HenschelHaus (2012). His novel December's Children was a finalist for the 2006 Sol Books Prose Series Prize and was published by Tempest Books( 2012) as the young adult novel King Biscuit. He has written a sequel to Well Deserved called The Last Stop, and another novel called Blue Sparta. Recently he finished a novel titled Fast Eddie. A lifelong Chicago Bears and Rolling Stones fan, he lives in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and teaches as full-time online English faculty for South University, where he is one of the founding editors of the student literary journal Asynchronous and sponsor of an online readings series featuring fiction and poetry.

My Review: This is the second book I read from this author (I also read "Not Famous Anymore"), so I was not surprised by its quality, as I know that he can deliver excellent stories.
The plot is simple to follow. Billy is a young boy (seventeen years old) who thinks that life is more than just working on his father business. He dreams of going beyond Argus, to California and become a surfer.
The story is full of rich characters. How he turned a hero, his friends, his encounter with the president of the United States and many other situations are well described in a very colloquial way.
This is a great read. I recommend this book to the permanent library of any reader who appreciates a good fiction novel and wants to be entertained for some hours. It took me about 7 hours to read the whole book.
This book was written by Michael Loyd Gray and published by Tempest Books in July 2012. I received an electronic version of this book for reviewing and I was not requested to provide a positive review. Opinions expressed here are my own.
If you read this review, fell free to leave a comment!

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