What happens to your Facebook account when you die?
Kendall Barber calls himself an obituarist – a social media undertaker who settles accounts for the dead. If you need your loved one’s Twitter account closed down or one last blog post to be made, he’ll take care of it, while also making sure that identity thieves can’t access forgotten personal data. It’s his way of making amends for his past, a path that has seen him return to the seedy city of Port Virtue after years in exile.
What if cleaning up your accounts could get you killed?
But now Kendall’s past is reaching out to drag him back into the world of identity theft, just as he gets in over his head with a beautiful new client whose dead brother may have been murdered – if he’s even dead at all. Chased by bikers, slapped around by Samoans and hassled by the police, all Kendall wants to do is close the case and impress his client without winding up just as deceased as the usual subjects of his work.
Will the obituarist have to write his own death notice? Or can Kendall turn the tables and put this body to rest?
The Obituarist is a crime novella about death, identity and redemption. It’s very serious, except for when it’s not.
‘Patrick O’Duffy’s The Obituarist uses the structure of a classic hard-boiled detective story to explore 21st century themes of identity. So already, that’s pretty neat. But it does it without getting lazy or falling back on narrative crutches. Instead, it digs into its unique setting to free it from film-noir cliché. On top of all that, it’s funny.’
– Greg Stolze, author of Switchflipped, YOU,
Mask of the Other and much much more
- Patrick O’Duffy’s novella The Obituarist is a great read that goes down smooth. His writing is delicately balanced – he writes in a style that evokes a time and place, without getting bogged down in details.
- This is a wise-cracking, confident story that twists like a cracking whip and runs hot on a fuel of lies, secrets and hammer beatings.
- A brilliant piece in voice, structure, wit and mystery, every chapter ends with a punch in the gut moment – literally, in one case.
- Though much shorter than the usual crime/thriller fare, The Obituarist is nonetheless a complex, well-rounded story whose climax and resolution both managed to take me by surprise.
- The Obituarist is a tight little story that runs along like a freight train, delivering wisecracks and shocks with equal aplomb – and deadly accuracy in both cases.
The Obituarist is available as a $2.99 (USD) ebook from:
(It’s also on the Apple Books app, but I don’t think I can link to that.)