The Empty Glass: A Novel

( 23 )

Overview

“J. I. Baker takes a bold run into Cain and DeLillo territory and scores.” —Barry Gifford, author of Wild at Heart

In the early-morning hours of August 5, 1962, Los Angeles County deputy coroner Ben Fitzgerald arrives at the home of the world’s most famous movie star, now lying dead in her bedroom. There he discovers The Book of Secrets—Marilyn Monroe’s diary—revealing a doomed love affair with a man she refers to only as “The General.” In the following days, Ben unravels a ...

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The Empty Glass: A Novel

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Overview

“J. I. Baker takes a bold run into Cain and DeLillo territory and scores.” —Barry Gifford, author of Wild at Heart

In the early-morning hours of August 5, 1962, Los Angeles County deputy coroner Ben Fitzgerald arrives at the home of the world’s most famous movie star, now lying dead in her bedroom. There he discovers The Book of Secrets—Marilyn Monroe’s diary—revealing a doomed love affair with a man she refers to only as “The General.” In the following days, Ben unravels a cover-up that implicates the Kennedys, the Mafia, and the CIA. Soon the sinister and surreal accounts recorded in The Book bleed into Ben’s own life, and he finds himself trapped—like Monroe—in a deepening paranoid conspiracy. A knockout combination of fact and legend, The Empty Glass is a riveting debut thriller.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
Praise for THE EMPTY GLASS by J. I. Baker:

The Empty Glass comes rampaging out of the gate and keeps on roaring and roistering until the sad, salutary shock of its final pages. After I started, the vivid writing and the presence of the unhappy latter-day Marilyn Monroe kept me reading all the way to the end. I want to tell everyone within the sound of my voice to buy this splendid novel. It's really punchy and really good, and you really should read it.”
—Peter Straub, award-winning author of In The Night Room

“J.I. Baker takes a bold run into Cain and DeLillo territory and scores. The Empty Glass is chilled and redolent of a good gin martini, leaving you primed to order another.”
—Barry Gifford, author of Wild at Heart

“Stylishly written and perfectly paced, The Empty Glass is noir fiction re-imagined for the modern era, a novel that is sharp, smart and breathlessly fast-paced, yet somehow manages to convey the slow burn of an old regret. As such, it marks the auspicious debut of a new voice in American suspense.”
—Thomas H. Cook, Edgar Award-winning author of Taken

“[In The Empty Glass] Baker conjures a suitably paranoid atmosphere and crackling dialogue in this look at the seedy intersection of celebrity, politics, and power.”
Booklist

The Empty Glass is riveting, brilliant, and endlessly fascinating. Writing from a wholly original perspective, J.I. Baker has combined the history and myth surrounding one of the most intriguing deaths of last century and created a shocking, unputdownable thriller. ”
—Jason Starr, author of The Craving

“J. I. Baker has spun a gripping and pulse-pounding conspiracy. Smart, perfectly atmospheric, and ultimately heartbreaking, The Empty Glass is one not to miss. It will stay with you long after the final page.”
—Andrew Gross, author of 15 Seconds and co-author of six #1 NYT bestsellers with James Patterson

“[An] imaginative 1960s yarn.”
US Weekly

“Marilyn Monroe is dead...by suicide. So why does all the evidence suggest that she was murdered? Los Angeles County deputy coroner Ben Fitzgerald’s relentless search for answers leads him down a dangerous path away from his sanity—and [he] takes readers along with him....a totally credible imagining of [Monroe’s] uncensored speech: breathy, sparingly punctuated and a little bit lost.... but Baker is totally in control, and watching him lead his hero along a precarious tightrope of reason is scary—and totally exhilarating.”
—Nathalie Gorman, Oprah.com

“It's LA CONFIDENTIAL meets the Bio channel with a little TMZ thrown in for fun.”
—ELLE

“Baker imagines Marilyn Monroe’s death through the eyes of the coroner. Mixing fact and theory, this taut thriller explores conspiracies around her as well as the official’s own psychological turmoil.”
InStyle

“James Ellroy fans will relish Baker’s impressive first novel, a dark paranoid thriller … barbed prose makes a familiar story fresh. Fluent in the noir idiom, Baker maintains the depressing atmospherics throughout.”
Publishers Weekly, STARRED review
From the Publisher
Praise for THE EMPTY GLASS by J. I. Baker:

The Empty Glass comes rampaging out of the gate and keeps on roaring and roistering until the sad, salutary shock of its final pages. After I started, the vivid writing and the presence of the unhappy latter-day Marilyn Monroe kept me reading all the way to the end. I want to tell everyone within the sound of my voice to buy this splendid novel. It's really punchy and really good, and you really should read it.”
—Peter Straub, award-winning author of In The Night Room

“J.I. Baker takes a bold run into Cain and DeLillo territory and scores. The Empty Glass is chilled and redolent of a good gin martini, leaving you primed to order another.”
—Barry Gifford, author of Wild at Heart

“Stylishly written and perfectly paced, The Empty Glass is noir fiction re-imagined for the modern era, a novel that is sharp, smart and breathlessly fast-paced, yet somehow manages to convey the slow burn of an old regret. As such, it marks the auspicious debut of a new voice in American suspense.”
—Thomas H. Cook, Edgar Award-winning author of Taken

“[In The Empty Glass] Baker conjures a suitably paranoid atmosphere and crackling dialogue in this look at the seedy intersection of celebrity, politics, and power.”
Booklist

The Empty Glass is riveting, brilliant, and endlessly fascinating. Writing from a wholly original perspective, J.I. Baker has combined the history and myth surrounding one of the most intriguing deaths of last century and created a shocking, unputdownable thriller. ”
—Jason Starr, author of The Craving

“J. I. Baker has spun a gripping and pulse-pounding conspiracy. Smart, perfectly atmospheric, and ultimately heartbreaking, The Empty Glass is one not to miss. It will stay with you long after the final page.”
—Andrew Gross, author of 15 Seconds and co-author of six #1 NYT bestsellers with James Patterson

“[An] imaginative 1960s yarn.”
US Weekly

“Marilyn Monroe is dead...by suicide. So why does all the evidence suggest that she was murdered? Los Angeles County deputy coroner Ben Fitzgerald’s relentless search for answers leads him down a dangerous path away from his sanity—and [he] takes readers along with him....a totally credible imagining of [Monroe’s] uncensored speech: breathy, sparingly punctuated and a little bit lost.... but Baker is totally in control, and watching him lead his hero along a precarious tightrope of reason is scary—and totally exhilarating.”
—Nathalie Gorman, Oprah.com

“It's LA CONFIDENTIAL meets the Bio channel with a little TMZ thrown in for fun.”
—ELLE

“Baker imagines Marilyn Monroe’s death through the eyes of the coroner. Mixing fact and theory, this taut thriller explores conspiracies around her as well as the official’s own psychological turmoil.”
InStyle

“James Ellroy fans will relish Baker’s impressive first novel, a dark paranoid thriller … barbed prose makes a familiar story fresh. Fluent in the noir idiom, Baker maintains the depressing atmospherics throughout.”
Publishers Weekly, STARRED review
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780142196786
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 4/30/2013
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 346,969
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

James Ireland Baker lives in Westchester County, New York. This is his first novel.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 23 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(4)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 1, 2012

    Great take on what really could have happened to Marilyn in her

    Great take on what really could have happened to Marilyn in her last days and what happened to the people investing her death.Kept me till the end and then kept me thinking,......Could it really have happened that way??

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 7, 2012

    Highly recommended

    Well written, imaginative, entertaining and thrilling. I read it in one day.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 18, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    this book was exceptionally written.  i loved Ben's voice and hi

    this book was exceptionally written.  i loved Ben's voice and his curious nature and enjoyed discovering the secrets of Marilyn Monroe alongside him.  the writing in this book was beautiful and the idea of the story being written as Ben told it to "Doc" was creative and different.  the ending was sort of confusing and at times i tripped over characters and wished that Baker supplied me with more information, which i why i'm only giving this novel four stars.  one day in the future hopefully i will re-read this book so i can say that i give it five stars, but for now it is only four because of a couple of confusing parts... overall, i loved this book and was haunted and captivated by Ben's thrilling ride.  

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 3, 2013

    Writing is very poor and at most times disjointed.  Did not enjo

    Writing is very poor and at most times disjointed.  Did not enjoy the book whatsoever.  If it had not been chosen for our book club, I would not have bothered finishing it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2012

    You Haunt me MM

    Page turner though confusing at times. Have researched MM for 50yrs. This books uses known documentation to weave a plausible story.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2012

    Waste of time

    Writing was sketchy. The story did not flow well. Nothing new about the details of Ms. Monroe's early tragic death.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 5, 2012

    Would not recommend-did not enjoy

    It was a very strange book. Hard to follow and very depressing.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted September 5, 2012

    Disappointed

    This read like a 1940's P.I. movie. It takes the story of Marilyn's death scene and imagines things that never happened. The protagonist is , of course, smarter than everyone else in the world. I felt like I really wasted my money on this one.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2012

    Great book

    This was a great book it was interesting and well written I could not stop reading it I even brought my nook to work with me so I could keep reading it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2012

    Loved the book

    The story kept me interested and in suspense i loved the writing and could not put it down umtil the end highly recommended

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 28, 2012

    This book was hard to get into. It was written as if the person

    This book was hard to get into. It was written as if the person was
    talking to someone, then it switched to "live action" and kept
    going back and forth, so was confusing at times. It did have a good plot overall.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 19, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I couldn't put this book down. Excellently paced, very intriguin

    I couldn't put this book down. Excellently paced, very intriguing,
    suspenseful, and well-written. Highly recommended.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2012

    Confused

    This book does alot of jumping around not as good as I though it was going to be disappointed ....

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2012

    I misunderstood

    I see what the writer was trying to convey! Sad Marilyn only some understood her

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2013

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 23 Customer Reviews

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