Someday Productions LLC and Pillow Talking are pleased to present the following review of GOING ALL IN by John Andrew Gallagher
Going All In by Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley and Wayne J. Keeley
Review by John Andrew Gallagher
Closed doors and curtained windows designed to keep out prying eyes. Perhaps shades of illumination spilling out between the cracks and spaces of the barriers provide just enough illumination to show glimpses of shadowy signs of life within. Do you ever wonder what really happens behind those closed doors? We certainly discover what happens behind the closed doors of celebrities as is evidenced by the rash of recent revelations about some of our celluloid heroes. But what about your neighbors?
Someone once did a study and found that both men and women, when they fantasize, have sexual fantasies about their neighbors and people they know, rather than celebrities or actors and actresses. This would certainly give credence to the age-old axiom, “Familiarity breeds contempt,” as well as Carl Sandberg’s quote “Love your neighbor as yourself, but don’t take down your fence.”
Going All In by husband-and-wife authors, Stephanie C. Lyons-Keeley and Wayne J. Keeley, is a tour de force which throws opens the doors and pulls back the curtains to reveal what goes on in some of our neighbors’ houses. We are caught, like helpless insects in Venus Flytrap, from the Prologue to the very last line of the last page of the book. We are voyeurs and rubberneckers who cannot take our eyes off the imminent train wreck that is about to happen.
In Going All In, three couples decide to spice up their poker game (and their lives) by turning the payout from pocket change into a free hall pass – a sexual fling with another player. As you can imagine, chaos ensues. It is somewhat reminiscent of the 1981 Alan Alda film, The Four Seasons, in which the dynamic of three couples who vacation together changes drastically when the husband of one divorces his wife of 21 years and starts bringing his much younger girlfriend on the trips. But Going All In is deeper than a romantic comedy like The Four Seasons. It is an insightful look into the interplay between the taboos and morals of our society. Above all, it is a cautionary tale for unbridled entitlement in our modern society.
The Keeleys’ story defies easy genre categorizations. It reads more like literary fiction with elements of a psychological thriller, romance, drama, and suspense novels. Although there is some light erotica, it is essential to the story as a whole. There also is a nice He Said/She Said flavor that is characteristic of the couples’ overall writing style.
If you read one book this year, you must go all in for Going All In (pun intended). It is well-worth the investment and once it hooks you, you can’t put it down. It also will make an awesome film and even stage play, something I am certain that the authors already are working on.
John Andrew Gallagher
John Gallagher’s The Networker was released by The Orchard in September 2017. His next feature as writer-director-producer, Sarah Q, stars The Sopranos’ Tony Sirico, Vincent Pastore, and Federico Castelluccio, and Academy Award nominees Burt Young and Sally Kirkland. He is a regular contributor to Pillow Talking.