Friday, January 19, 2018

Spotlight on the Books of B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree Lorraine Devon Wilke

After the Sucker Punch

Cover design by Grace Amandes
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Pub. Date: May 15th, 2014
Pages: 340

They buried her father at noon, at five she found his journals, and in the time it took to read one-and-a-half pages her world turned upside down… he thought she was a failure.

Every child, no matter what age, wants to know their father loves them, and Tessa Curzio – thirty-six, emerging writer, ex-rocker, lapsed Catholic, defected Scientologist, and fourth in a family of eight complicated people – is no exception. But just when she thought her twitchy life was finally coming together – solid relationship, creative job; a view of the ocean – the one-two punch of her father’s death and posthumous indictment proves an existential knockout.

She tries to “just let it go,” as her sister suggests, but life viewed through the filter of his damning words is suddenly skewed, shaking the foundation of everything from her solid relationship and winning job to the truth of her family, even her sense of self. From there, friendships strain, bad behavior ensues, new men entreat, and family drama spikes, all leading to her little-known aunt, a nun and counselor, who lovingly strong-arms Tessa onto a journey of discovery and reinvention. It’s a trip that’s not always pretty – or particularly wise – but somewhere in all the twists and turns, unexpected truths are found.

Author and longtime Huffington Post contributor, Lorraine Devon Wilke, takes an irreverent look at father/daughter relationships through the unique prism of Tessa’s saga and its exploration of family, faith, cults, creativity, new love and old, and the struggle to define oneself against the inexplicable perceptions of a deceased parent. Told with both sass and sensibility, it’s a story wrapped in contemporary culture but with a very classic heart.

Praise and Awards

B.R.A.G Medallion Honoree ~ IndieBRAG

"A realistic and profound journey of realization and forgiveness... a solid novel that admirably explores the fragile, fraught relationship between parent and child." ~ Publishers Weekly

"Wilke writes with razor-sharp wit and radiant flair, and the prose's high quality is the novel's principal strength. She also sensitively portrays how real love and affection can survive and even flourish in an otherwise dysfunctional family." ~ Kirkus Reviews

"A sweeping, beautifully written read; gripping from page one. A family saga with ambition and class." ~ Mark Barry, Green Wizard Publishing

"Captured the spirit of family perfectly in that there is no perfect family. Funny, warm, tense, angry, it ultimately shows us that life is to be lived and there's no point in dwelling on the past." ~ Lindley Reviews

“A keenly executed character study. The novel is tightly structured and holds its complex elements with a sure and skillful grip. The dialogue pops…a thoroughly engaging and enjoyable read.”—Junior Burke, author of Something Gorgeous (farfalla press/McMillan & Parrish)

“With bare-bone honesty and fiery dialogue, Wilke explores the loaded relationship between parents and their adult-children, examining the brave and lonely journey of self-discovery, reinvention, and healing…raw and brave—a great read.”—Tracy Trivas, author of The Wish Stealers (Simon & Schuster)

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Book Trailer

Hysterical Love

Cover design by Grace Amandes
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Pub. Date: March 31st, 2015
Pages: 314

Dan McDowell, a thirty-three-year-old portrait photographer happily set to marry his beloved Jane, is stunned when a slip of the tongue about an “ex-girlfriend overlap” of years earlier throws their pending marriage into doubt and him onto the street. Or at least into the second bedroom of their next-door neighbor, Bob, where Dan is sure it won't be long. It's long.

His sister, Lucy, further confuses matters with her “soul mate theory” and its suggestion that Jane might not be his... soul mate, that is. But the tipping point comes when his father is struck ill, sparking a chain of events in which Dan discovers a story written by this man he doesn’t readily understand, but who, it seems, has long harbored an unrequited love from decades earlier.

Incapable of fixing his own romantic dilemma, Dan becomes fixated on finding this woman of his father’s dreams and sets off for Oakland, California, on a mission fraught with detours and semi-hilarious peril. Along the way he meets the beautiful Fiona, herbalist and flower child, who assists in his quest while quietly and erotically shaking up his world. When, against all odds, he finds the elusive woman from the past, the ultimate discovery of how she truly fit into his father's life leaves him staggered, as does the reality of what’s been stirred up with Fiona. But it’s when he returns home to yet another set of unexpected truths that he’s shaken to the core, ultimately forced to face who he is and just whom he might be able to love.

Lorraine Devon Wilke, author of the acclaimed debut novel, AFTER THE SUCKER PUNCH, brings her deft mix of humor and drama to a whip-smart narrative told from the point of view of its male protagonist. HYSTERICAL LOVE explores themes of family, commitment, balancing creativity, facing adulthood, and digging deep to understand the beating heart of true love.

Praise and Awards

2017 Solo Medallist in General Fiction, New Apple Awards

2017 Finalist in General Fiction; American Book Fest Best Book Awards

B.R.A.G Medallion Honoree ~ IndieBRAG

"Wilke is a skilled writer, able to plausibly inhabit Dan's young male perspective... a well-written, engaging, sometimes-frustrating tale of reaching adulthood a little late." ~ Kirkus Reviews

"I never found a writer who was as good as DH Lawrence, but could also get into a man's head and tell that story. Until now." ~ Barb Taub, Writing & Coffee Book Blog

“This is one of those books which exceeded all my expectations. I was expecting a romance with a couple of twists to the tale but what I got was something far deeper and more satisfying.” — A Women's Wisdom Book Blog

"Effectively told through the first person, Hysterical Love is a deftly told tale about the search for love in the 21st century." ~ Literary Fiction Book Review

"If you want a book with many layers, to be thoroughly entertained by a cracking story, this is for you." ~ Ali Levett

"If you're looking for book recommendations, these are the editor picks: Hysterical Love..." ~ WE Magazine for Women

"I loved this book! Loved, loved, loved it. Devon Wilke's writing style is witty, pointed, funny, even hilarious at times." ~ Readers' Favorite Book Reviews

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About the Author

Author, photographer, singer/songwriter,
Lorraine Devon Wilke, brings the sum total of her creative
experience to her compelling contemporary fiction. Pulling from every chapter of her eclectic background, she creates characters and plots that are sharply original yet reflect universal themes, with dialogue that jumps off the page. Her book covers are designed with her photography, and her debut novel, AFTER THE SUCKER PUNCH, includes a free download of one of her songs.

A longtime contributor to The Huffington Post, Devon Wilke's trademark "sass and sensibility" infuses her work with candor, provocative themes, and, whenever possible, wit and humor. But whether exploring issues of family, faith, love, or tragedy, her stories always embrace an elemental mix of heart and soul. Along with AFTER THE SUCKER PUNCH, her dramatic short story, "She Tumbled Down," and her second novel, HYSTERICAL LOVE, are also available at Amazon. Her third novel, A NICE WHITE GIRL, is currently prepping for publication.

You can follow her commentary, cultural perspective, and updates on various creative adventures at, with all other links and information available at

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