A Gay intergenerational Love Story/murder mystery/anti-Mormon rant & fictionalized autobiography.
On his sixtieth birthday, Sacramento Real Estate Boker Rick Vernor receives in the mail, along with birthday cards and advertisements, a note accusing him of being "an abomination in the sight of God" who is next in line to die for his sins for writing "dirty books" forty years ago. Rick soon learns that at least two other Gay men have received similar threats from the same killer, but no one has any idea who the murderer might be. The mystery deepens as two handsome Sheriff's Homicide Detectives visit Rick, investigaring a recent murder, where a page from one of his novels, Too Big, was attached to the dead man's gentals. As Rick and his new friend search for clues, romance starts to blossom between them, but is frustrated by the fact that David is young enough to be Rick's son. The relationship dwindles,then rekindles as they almost die for their love.
My sixtieth birthday began badly, like an omen. The letter arrived in the mail along with several envelopes that looked like birthday cards, plus the usual assortment of advertising brochures and catalogs. It was an innocent-looking, plain white 9x12 envelope, like they sell in office-supply stores – like millions of people send to each other in the mail every day – but it had my own return address on a computer-printed label, up in the left-hand corner and a matching label, perfectly centered on the front of the envelope.
aka Jake Vance
aka Hank O’Toole
#1 Winding Way Circle,
Fair Oaks, CA 95628
I placed it, unopened, on the kitchen table, then sat and studied it for several minutes, with all sorts of wild ideas bubbling up in my head. I was quite sure I hadn’t sent it to myself – unless I was going crazy! That didn’t seem likely – although I wasn’t sure I’d know I was crazy, if I was crazy. Was it a joke? Could it be some kind of terrorist thing? I tried to think of some logical reason why anyone like me would be getting a mail-bomb or Anthrax, and decided I was being far too paranoid. I laughed and opened the envelope – very carefully, I’ll admit. But no explosion, no white powder. Worse! My heart started pounding the instant I realized what the envelope contained.
It was a page ripped from one of my novels, with an angry, blood-red message, hand-printed with a marking-pen, in the bottom margin. I recognized the page almost immediately, even though I hadn’t seen it in, what, forty years? Page 29/30 of Too Big, my third published novel, written more than forty years ago, and long-since out of print – as far as I knew. Page 30 was the last few lines of Chapter 1: