"Being John Church" By Neil S. Plakcy: Review/Giveaway

 Review by Lorie Lewis Ham

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of the book and a link to purchase it. 

Even though Being John Church by Neil S. Plakcy is a mystery, it is also much more than that—it is a journey of discovery and love—a journey you will be glad you have taken.

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Jeff Berman’s life keeps falling apart. After being denied tenure he becomes a presenter on the History Channel, but then the show is canceled and he has no idea what to do with his life. At least he is back together with his boyfriend Pascal, even if their relationship has been rocky due to Pascal’s self-destructive behavior in the past. When Pascal dies in a terrible accident Jeff feels completely lost. At Pascal’s funeral, things get even worse as Jeff learns that the man he thought he knew didn’t even exist—his real name was John Church. After speaking with Pascal’s, or John’s, parents and being asked to find out if John killed himself, Jeff becomes obsessed with figuring out who Pascal really was and along the way begins to wonder if his death wasn’t an accident.

John’s life was filled with tragedy and lies and Jeff begins to understand why Pascal became the troubled person that he came to love. As Jeff solves the mystery behind Pascal’s/John’s life and death he also finds a new path for his own life. Along this journey, Jeff ends up with a chance at new love, a puppy, a new home, new friends, and a whole new beginning. For fans of Neil’s Golden Retriever mysteries, there is an extra little treat in this book.

I have become a big fan of Neil’s writing and thoroughly enjoyed Being John Church. The mystery of John’s life and death is filled with plenty of surprises along the way, and the journey of personal discovery that Jeff takes was inspiring. Jeff is a relatable and realistic character and I thoroughly enjoyed spending this time with him, and the dog in the story was a definite bonus!

To enter to win an ebook copy of Being John Church, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "church,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen November 19, 2022. US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. If entering via comment please include your email address so we can contact you. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode goes up next week.

You can use this link to purchase the book or click here. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Lorie Lewis Ham is our Editor-in-Chief and a contributor to various sections, coupling her journalism experience with her connection to the literary and entertainment worlds. Explore Lorie's mystery writing including her latest mystery novel One of Us, a Tower District Mystery, at Mysteryrat's Closet.

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. This looks good! Thank you for the contest

  2. We have a winner!
    Lorie Ham

  3. We have a winner!
    Lorie Ham


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