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Enfant Terrible: Showstopper by Gwydhar Gebien is a Best Books '23 pick #literaryfiction #litfic #bestbooks #giveaway

Title: Enfant Terrible: Showstopper


Author: Gwydhar Gebien


Genre: Literary Fiction


Book Blurb:

Damen Warner is ready for a fresh start. After spiraling into alcoholic depression as the result of his grandmother’s death he plans to start the new year right. Thanks to his newfound notoriety as an internet sensation, Damen and his band, OBNXS, return to the studio to record their next album. But as his professional career takes off, Damen quickly discovers that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Forced to balance his professional aspirations against his deepening relationship with his girlfriend Melody and her five-year-old daughter, Damen quickly finds himself tangled in a web of controversy and chaos that threatens everything he loves.As he fights to keep his band, his relationship, and his sanity from unravelling, Damen struggles to confront his attitudes toward family and fatherhood, and to grow up—or die trying.




Gorey arrived a short while later in a beat-up Honda Accord and a cloud of questionable emissions. I climbed into the passenger seat, glad to be out of the cold, even if it meant sitting in hot subway breath blasting out of the dashboard heaters. Gorey took one look at me and cackled.


“What?” I asked.


“Nice ’stache.”


“What?” I pulled down the sun visor, showering myself in unpaid parking tickets, to look in the mirror. Someone had Sharpied a Tom Selleck mustache on my top lip, probably Gorey himself for all I knew. I groaned inwardly in annoyance, but I could hardly protest. It was my own stupid fault for passing out. A bobblehead pit bull nodded at me wisely from the dashboard. I nodded back.


Gorey slammed his foot on the gas. The car fishtailed as the tires lost traction in the gray slush then lurched forward sharply. The seatbelt slammed into my gut.


“Oh, you suck,” I groaned.


“You suck.”


“How are you so f—ing chipper this morning?” I asked, gripping the door handle as Gorey swerved to avoid a Michelin Man in the process of building a Lawn-Chair-And-Broomstick altar to the winter parking gods.


“I am a responsible family man and went home at a decent hour,” Gorey replied with obvious self-satisfaction.


“Uh-huh. Your pregnant wife called you for a booty call, and you went running,” I translated.


Gorey grinned sheepishly but didn’t deny it. He’d only been married for six months, and in another six, he’d be a father. In the meantime, he and his bride were still banging like hammer and tongs.


“How drunk was I last night?” I asked, pressing my face against the cool glass of the window as we lurched through the snowy streets.


“I dunno.” Gorey shrugged. “You got real philosophical about three in the morning, which is when we decided to do this thing.”


“What thing?”


“C’mon, dude. You know.” Gorey waited with puppy-like anticipation for me to catch up with the conversation, but my brains continued to play static. For a moment, his face registered disappointment then malicious glee. He crowed, “You don’t remember, do you?”


“Oh, come on. It’s early.”


“It’s four o’clock in the afternoon.”


“Well, I just woke up, and I feel like I’m dead, okay? Tell me where we’re going and what we’re doing so I can do it and go home and pass out in my own barf.”


“Don’t worry about it. It’s gonna be epic,” Gorey told me. “You got wire cutters, right?”


“Wire cutters?”


“Yeah, you brought them, right?”


“No. Why would I bring wire cutters?”


“You said you were going to bring wire cutters, man,” Gorey hollered at me, more to watch me squirm as his voice stabbed through my sledgehammer headache than because he was actually mad.


“F—k,” I groaned.


He slammed on the brakes, and the car skidded to a halt with a crunch as it sank into a bank of plowed snow at the side of the road.


“F--------k,” I reiterated.


Gorey just grinned and pulled his aviator goggles down over his eyes and his scarf up over his mouth and nose, hiding his face. I stared at my reflection in the tinted lenses.


“Don’t worry. I brought bolt cutters. I knew you would forget.” He fiddled with his phone and then propped it on the dashboard, pointed out the windshield and leaning against the bobblehead for support. “It’s showtime,” he sang into the lens. “Don’t try this at home, kids.”


He left the keys in the ignition and clambered out into the snow. I let my head fall back against the headrest and tried to gather my wits. We were parked outside the chain-link fence of an auto junkyard. A faded sign, now spattered with gray gobs of salty snow, read like the final puzzle on Wheel of Fortune: B_W_RE OF D_G.


Something clicked in my memory.


I punched open the car door and launched myself out after Gorey, only to be forcibly retracted by the seatbelt.


“Oh, hell no,” I screamed at him, struggling to unhook the belt.


Gorey was already snipping through the chain link.


On the far side of the fence, I saw movement in a heap of wooden crates beside the building’s garage doors. Moments later, the piebald face of a pit bull glared out at us from the darkness of her lair. She’d already been pretty rawboned when we’d first encountered her back in November, and she was skinnier now. Her coat was scarred and patchy, and it seemed like poor protection against the biting cold that was already stinging my nose and ears.


There was a jingle of a chain as she launched herself across the snowy lot toward the fence. Her steaming breath smoked out between sharp, white teeth in a pink, gummy mouth. She leaped toward Gorey, only to be pulled up short with an astonished yip as the chain attached to her collar snapped taut.


“We are not stealing that dog,” I shouted, finally getting free of the car.


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What makes your featured book a must-read?


If you’ve ever wanted to know what it is like to get inside the mind of a rockstar as they spiral toward rock bottom—and live to tell the tale—then this is the book for you.


Giveaway –


Enter to win a $45 Amazon gift card:



Open Internationally.


Runs December 18 – December 31, 2023.


Winner will be drawn on January 2, 2024.


Author Biography:


Gwydhar Gebien is a writer, an artist, and a filmmaker; originally from Chicago now transplanted in Los Angeles in pursuit of a career in film production.


With a background in theatre from Illinois Wesleyan University and a master's degree in film production from the University of Southern California, she is currently putting her training to good use at Skydance Animation as a Production Coordinator.


An eldritch creature of introverted disposition, Gwydhar, lives a quiet life in a pink house with her husband and a cat and a minivan, but can occasionally be coaxed out into the open with music, snacks, or a single-malt whisky


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N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Dec 29, 2023

Thank you, Gwydhar, for sharing your book in our Best Books of '23 Bookish Event!

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