Sometimes you just gotta be silly.
Well, I do. People like my humor, but up until now my books have been halves: half humor, half romance; half humor, half history; half humor, half adventure. Although The Notorious Ian Grant will look and feel like a romantic comedy, I felt like ramping it up to the level of my humor columns, just to see if it would work as well for fiction as it does in the newspaper. I think it does. I could be wrong.
Ian Grant isn’t exactly a type A personality, although he’s got the looks for it. He’s Cary Grant with a Groucho Marx personality, and he’s not ashamed of it … even if he is ashamed of a few youthful indiscretions here and there. Like dancing on Charlie Sheen’s car, drag racing Justin Bieber, and of course peeing on a bouncer’s shoes. (Ian still insists Bieber cheated.) These days Ian’s on a path to redeeming himself—he hopes—but his past keeps coming back to haunt him, as in this snippet in which he meets two residents of Hurricane, Indiana for the first time:
They stopped by the intersection, where the cop now stared daggers at Ian. “Here, me first.” Beth hopped down from the horse with ease and grace, and once she’d cleared Ian managed a dismount with none of either. As he stumbled away, the animal turned toward him and made a noise that sounded suspiciously like a laugh.
“His name is Honey,” the cop said, as she stepped around her patrol car.
“Really?” Ian looked back at the horse. “You hear that? All the other guy horses make fun of you.”
Honey turned his head away.
“Hey, I was kidding —“
Beth patted the horse’s flank. “It’s okay, Honey—he’s a scumbag.”
“Beth, sweetie …” Fran hooked a thumb toward Ian. “What have I told you about picking up strays?”
“He says he needs to get into Hurricane.” Beth leaned in toward the woman. “His name is Ian Grant.”
“I don’t care if his name’s—oh.” Fran gave Ian an even closer look, if that was possible. “I’ve seen your jail book-in photos.”
“Was I smiling? Could you see my dimples?” Fran had long hair, secured in a tight ponytail, along with big brown eyes and high cheekbones that pointed toward a full Hispanic heritage. She probably had a nice smile. He almost regretted letting his agent talk him out of joining the cast of Lady Cop 3: Hollywood Vice, especially since his agent dumped him weeks later.
“You smiled, but the bloody nose and the missing tooth spoiled the effect.”
“They put the tooth back. See?” Ian gave her his most ingratiating smile, to no effect.
“Very nice. However, around here those trimmed stubbles are not in fashion.”
“I’ve driven for three days —“
“May I ask your reason for being here, Mr. Grant?”
Uh-oh. Official voice.
Ian had better watch himself, since the girl he got a ride from is his future sister-in-law, and the cop is his future brother-in-law’s best friend. Too bad he doesn’t know that yet. That’s one of the fun things about Ian Grant: He really does want to do the right thing—but he just can’t seem to keep his mouth shut.
I wonder if Ian’s trickster spirit might have something to do with why my publisher released the book a month and a half before I expected them to? The Notorious Ian Grant is now available as an e-book, with the print version coming in September. It can be found in various formats at:
Whiskey Creek Press: here
Barnes and Noble: here
Blurb: When infamous party boy and b-list celebrity Ian Grant learns his sister is marrying a cop, he abandons Hollywood and drives to Indiana. His plan: to make up for all those times he embarrassed his family by taking charge of the wedding planning. So, Ian’s never planned a wedding … how hard could it be?
The tornado ravaged town of Hurricane is like another world—a world he’d like to be part of, if only people would stop judging him by his previous antics. He might even have a chance at romance with his future brother-in-law’s coworker, detective Fran Vargas. But for Fran everything’s gone wrong since the moment Ian arrived, including their confrontation with a bullying politician, and an influx of nosy reporters and angry ex-girlfriends. Not to mention Ian’s wedding planning keeps getting interrupted by someone trying to kill him.
No one ever said redemption is easy.
Author Bio - Since 2011 Mark R Hunter has published five books: the romantic comedy Storm Chaser; a related collection Storm Chaser Shorts; a local history book, Smoky Days And Sleepless Nights: A Century Or So With The Albion Fire Department; a humorous adventure set in a girl’s camp, The No-Campfire Girls; and now a follow up to Storm Chaser, The Notorious Ian Grant. He also had a humor piece included in an anthology, My Funny Valentine.
During that time, he continued his humor column, “Slightly Off The Mark”, and did other writing for newspapers for local volunteer organizations. His full time job is as an emergency dispatcher, and he’s also fit in enough time to be a volunteer firefighter, father, grandfather, and tired.
Mark lives in Albion, Indiana, with his wife and editor Emily, a cowardly ball python named Lucius, and a loving, scary dog named Beowulf. He has two daughters and twin grandsons, and so naturally is writing a children's book. He can be found online at www.markrhunter.com.