THE YEAR OF DAN PALACE
Every New Year’s Eve, millions of people around the world make resolutions intended to better their lives:
Quit smoking. Quit drinking. Quit eating that extra cupcake.
“At turns funny, smart, painful, and most of all, honest. This is a writer who doesn’t pull punches, who shows us sides of a character it might be easier to turn away from.” – Reggie Lutz, author of HauntedDan Palace has always played it safe. He chose the safe job. Married a safe woman. Rarely travels far from home. But something is missing.In the final minutes before the New Year, Dan musters the courage he desperately needs to embark on a quest to find that missing “something”: the sense of adventure and true magic he remembers from his youth, along with the love of his ex-wife, who has hated him since their wedding night nine years before.
MEET THE CHARACTERS
39 years old. Star collection agent at IP Collections. Since childhood, he’s been taught to play it safe. (“Don’t get out of the car during the fireworks, honey” safe.) His life is fine, but something is missing.
38 years old. Custodial engineer who wants to do more. Hopelessly in love with Dan. Occasionally very excitable.
39 years old. Began hating Dan on their wedding night and divorced him weeks later. She’s a free spirit, she’d like to think. Though wealthy, she lives in an apartment with a sweat-hot kitchen and a living room so cold that frost forms on the windows. She doesn’t like the chicken soup that comes in a can.
17-almost-18 years old. Hotel front desk worker impatient with the stagnancy of her life and highly motivated to do something exciting. Dangerously infatuated with Dan, who she also believes may be her ticket to “living huge.”
25 years old. Jenny’s boyfriend. Not excited about this infatuation or about Jenny’s huge-living plans.
Age unknown. Longhair tortoiseshell first rescued by a woman who did the best she could (not really good enough) before being adopted by Dan. Prone to ill-timed, jarringly loud meows, but very cute in the sun.
“I’m normally a slow reader these days, but I could not stop reading this.”- Cheryl Anne Gardner, author of The Kissing Room and head fiction editor at Apocrypha and Abstractions Literary Journal
When things don’t go as planned, Dan finds himself on an unexpected road trip with a young hotel worker and her possessive boyfriend. Together, they experience some of the surprising consequences of living life to its passionate fullest – as do the people they love.
“The Year of Dan Palace will grab you and hold you until you finish the final pages.“ – Amazon reviewer
“This book was a pleasant surprise.” – Goodreads reviewer
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Chris Jane was born in California in the 1970s and moved 10 or 15 times over the years before finally making it to New England. The younger years were happy, but awkward. Tricks to try to be like the cool kids at different stages of childhood: wearing the trendy label (this worked in 5th grade, but had no effect in 6th); lacing sneakers with thicks (effectiveness not determined); wearing black like the other 13-year-old kids who were wearing black (was rightly called a ‘poseur’); being the textbook definition of a teenager with no posing, just naturally (worked out fine for Chris, but wasn’t as much fun for the parents).
Despite a poor academic high school performance and a vehement aversion to even more schooling, Chris enrolled in college four years after leaving high school and stayed through graduate school. Unfortunately, a writing degree doesn’t exactly invite an onslaught of job opportunities, so work was varied and often interesting: college instruction as an adjunct English professor; editing book-length manuscripts in the home office of an enthusiastic believer in the law of attraction; and when the graduate degree was deemed an “over-qualification,” the 2 p.m. – 10 p.m. shift at the front desk of a hotel.
Work life is still spotty, interrupted now and then by writing stints, but that seems to work.