In September of 2017, Intoxic was in the running for Underground Book Reviews Pitch Perfect award. I was thrilled with the honor of being in the running, and while I think Intoxic is good, it's not mass market. It has an audience; it has a segment of the population to which it speaks. Not everybody can identify with Alison and her dysfunctional life. But everybody could identify with the love story, and as soon as I saw Intoxic's competition, I knew I would only be honored by the nomination and not by the win. The winning book for September was a book that I've highlighted on my blog, Last Exit to Montauk. It is a universal love story, without any mush. If somebody had to beat me, I'm glad it was Phillip.
Last Exit to Montauk is now in the running for Underground Book Reviews Novel of the Year! The Verve published Last Exit to Montauk, and they will be producing my next book, Off the Dark Ledge. This win will be a fantastic honor for Phillip Vega and The Verve. Last Exit to Montauk was The Verve's first traditionally published offering. Read this novel. Vote for this novel.
Last Exit to Montauk is Phillip Vega's first offering, and I for one hope it's not his last. He has a very natural, easy voice that draws the reader right into the characters lives he creates. As a reminder, I'm placing an excerpt from that review:
What is Last Exit to Montauk?
"...think Less Than Zero minus the drugs and sleaze, but with that same candor, the same "inside your head" walk through another person's life, meets the Outsiders, with its personable characters and the hint of social awkwardness. It's a love story set in Long Island during the 1980's. Those iconic eighties, with the big hair, the boat shoes, MTV, and corded phones, and Vega draws it back into focus with exquisite detail. He draws it up with both eyes open, without a hint of sentimentality. The people -- his mother, who mixes Spanish and English in the same sentence, the siblings, the friends, all of it is so nicely detailed and rendered, even the characters you will hate, they are all handled with care. Vega looks back at this first love, "B," and we fall in love with her right along with him. We fall in love with her laugh, with the way she moves, with the way her mind works, and with her sense of humor. She is encapsulated in this book like a photo in a locket. We love B every bit as much as our narrator does. Every step through this book rings true. It's like Vega filleted his soul for the world to see.
Read this book. It will make you feel things you may have forgotten or things you've never known. There is great love in this book and great tragedy. It's a book I'll never forget."