Queen's Ferry Press

Completeness of the Soul

Jim Booth



Like other rock stars before him, Jay Breeze has been relegated to “the dustbin of history.” Consigned there even before his car hit a tree, Jay’s reality was fan-dictated: the embodiment of a past that “the future thought it was.” His literary executor, Charlie Beagle, journalism professor, Rolling Stone contributing editor, and former bandmate, retrieves the scraps—what seems the detritus of his friend’s life—and composes the ballad of Jay Breeze, Rock Star. Bridging audience and artist, persona and man, musician and muse, reader and unflinchingly rendered character, Beagle arranges Jay’s woeful, passionate lyrics into a haunting, heartbreaking song.

"Jim seems to have found a unique way to illuminate the interior voice of fame. A way to convey the restless, active, eternally adolescent mind of an aging rock star. A way to convey the pros and cons of walking the tightrope of celebrity while offering an accurate glimpse into the heart of that life."
—Don Dixon, record producer (R.E.M., The Smithereens, Marshall Crenshaw, Marti Jones), composer, performer (Arrogance, Don Dixon and the Jump Rabbits)

"I dug this book a lot. The sequence in Santa Fe is both funny and heart–wrenching. I think my favorite device is the way Jim seems to approach Jay’s life as a series of fragments. In death, you get a better sense of who Jay was in life but you also get an echo of the barrier Jay put up to distance himself from the rock hero worship he was never comfortable with. It rings true and sincere in a way that few rock stories do."
—Michael Smith, Fiction 8

"Jay’s story is told primarily through his collected letters and journal entries, a form that lends itself to honesty and raw emotion. Jay is a lover of literature, a lover of rock n’ roll, and a man who wants to quote Keats and Elvis Costello in the same sentence. His writing alternately poignant and humorous, he simultaneously damns and embraces his fame while hanging from Shakespearean banisters."
—Teresa Milbrodt, author of Bearded Women: Stories

Jim Booth is a fiction writer with over 25 published stories in journals ranging from StorySouth to Dead Mule to Pig Iron Malt to Dew on the Kudzu and the author of The New Southern Gentleman (Wexford College Press, 2002) and Morte D’Eden, or Tom Sawyer Meets the Rolling Stones (Beach House Books, 2003).

Jim is fiction editor for Scholars and Rogues Literary Magazine, the literary arm of the national blog Scholars and Rogues.

A former touring rock musician, Jim currently operates his own independent record label, Goat Boy Records, and his sons Joshua and Trevor lead the rock group DoCo, currently on tour. Jim’s wife Carolyn Lea Booth is an artist and poet whose work shows regularly in galleries in North Carolina and the Southeast.

Find out more about Jim at www.jimboothauthor.com.