Inside Out by Jack Kearney

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Follow Danny Belson, an actor, as he goes from a carefree beach-volleyball loving, pool- shooting all American,to a convicted murderer. The irony is that he is being incarcerated in the same institution where just six months prior he was conducting a drama workshop. So he serving his time where he already has built in friends as well as enemies. “Inside Out” is a commentary on the difference between justice as seen in the eyes of the law, and true justice. There has never been a story line where the protagonist, a non criminal is thrown into prison where he already knows some of the inmates.

Go on the an incredible journey that starts with Danny reminiscing about his early days in Hollywood, all the while having been handcuffed to the seat in front of him as the transport bus rambles onto Lom Poc. Set in the late 1978 “Inside Out” offers a very comprehensive look at a time when Sony’s Walkman started an electronic revolution, while at the same time the nations pastime was standing in line for gas.

Inside Out” introduces the reader to multitude of characters. Some are good, some are bad, and a few are just evil. There is pimp who has the looks of a movie star. Patrick is a gun runner who’s only offense was selling Canadian guns rather than American made. They represent just two of the workshop members that like Danny. There are three members however that hate him and now that he is in their house they hatch a plan to offer him up to one the baddest inmates in the institution. Written using flashbacks, with no chapters, learn what a struggling actor goes through, and how, after his incarceration, Danny’s life is turned INSIDE OUT.

About the Author

Jack KearneyFor most of my life I was a struggling actor. I appeared on such shows as Mash, WKRP in Cincinnati, and General Hospital. For a short time, I even taught an acting workshop. Back in the mid-seventies I was a recent graduate of the very prestigious American Academy of Dramatic Arts where I was part of the first graduating class in Los Angeles. After that I joined the ranks of the other sixty thousand would-be stars who acted in showcase plays, occasionally going on professional auditions, and attending weekly workshops.

I started writing short stories in high school. I have written many short stories and had two poems published. As an actor I wrote several audition monologues and a few TV treatments for some of the more popular shows of the day. I was also part of an experimental program where I taught a drama workshop to inmates of a a medium-security federal prison at Lom Poc California. After a scare a few years later, I played with the notion of taking an actor in the same situation but by a twist of fate he ends up back inside of that very institution as a inmate. INSIDE OUT is my first and only book. It is based on a script that I wrote in the mid ’80s.

Waiting for that big break I had many survival jobs typical of the actors of the ’70s and ’80s. But sales seemed to offer the only possible way to make a living and contrary to popular belief, I discovered that a salesperson is made not born. In fact, commissioned sales can be almost as frustrating as breaking into show business. I am currently working out of my home, on commission, for a newsletter publishing company. I have been married twice. My first, which ended in divorce gave me my beautiful daughter Shannon. I lost my second wife of ten years to cancer in 2012. Now 63, I currently reside in Northern California with my Yorkie-Poo Toby.

Twitter @insideoutauthor
Facebook Name: Jack Kearney


By mmoamazon on September 30, 2015

Format: Kindle Edition

I’m betting the majority of people have seen prison based dramas as they are still in vogue but the problem with many is that they tend to be quite superficial and so you end up with one dimensional characters. Inside Out certainly has its share of tough nuts but it also gets beneath of the prison system to tell a genuinely captivating story. With multiple narrative threads and a host of cleverly nuanced characters it easily falls into the category of ‘page turner’ From start to finish, it held my attention and ended exactly on the right note.


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Now I am avid reader from authors as notable as Grisham to Sparks. And I would have to say that though I had never heard of this author, the front cover was so catchy I had to give a read. It all starts pretty innocently with a struggling actor just trying to get by and get his next big break. What I find intriguing is the authors ability to give such wonderful background and illustrations of his Danny’s life prior to the big turning point! I literally felt like I was immersed in the L.A. Lifestyle. And then the unthinkable happens, he goes to Prison. Now I thought it was going to be a copycat of Shawshank at this point, but no! Turns out Danny had both friends and enemies as soon as the bus arrived. He had done a acting workshop at the prison as a free man and as life goes, got along with some and made enemies of others. I’m in amazement of how Kearney illustrates wonderful friendships as well as deep seeded hatred for others. Danny though confident and cunning, certainly isn’t ready for the hardened criminal he is about to meet and become! Kearney does a masterful job of showing the reader just how being in the system, though should be rehabilitating,has a hardening affect on the inmate. Here is this guy that out of pure necessity, transforms from chihuahua to pit bull out of necessity and survival. I was taken back by what the system may actually to a poor sole like Danny’s. Great read!

Now understand I take these reviews seriously, so please don’t think I hand out these accolades hardly ever. But this book has “NOTEBOOK” like flashbacks and Quentin Tarantino like twists! I absolutely loved it and wish there were more books out there with this degree of originality and well crafted writing where it feels like you are watching the movie. LOVED IT!!!!


Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

I’m an avid reader so when a friend told me about this book I went for it. It is the best $10 I’ve spent in a long time. Mr. Kearney has created unique form of telling a story that at first left me a little perplexed. I try to read at least three chapters a day when starting a new book, but it wasn’t until I was a quarter ways through “Inside Out” that I realized that there aren’t any chapters. It was so fascinating and powerful that I just kept reading until the end. As a woman I never thought that I would like a story about prison, but this story about an actor who gets caught up in a tale of survival, is not your typical prison drama. Danny Belson is an actor, who after helping teach an experimental program, designed to give convicts an opportunity to learn some acting techniques, ends up back inside as an inmate himself. The reason he is convicted could happen to anyone, and the fact that he is thrown into a situation where he has already made friends as well as enemies, makes this book very interesting and extremely exciting.

It is obvious that the author was a struggling actor in the late 70’s, because the events of Danny’s rise cleaning toilets to working actor are so vivid. His realistic account of prison life makes me think that he may well have spent time, as well. What I do know that he weaves a story that gives the reader a real look at justice in the eyes of the law, as opposed to true justice. Wait until you see, what I know you will end up cheering for. It made me really look deeply into my soul. I have reviewed books in the past, and this is the best one I have read in a long time. Also because of all the characters we get to know, I believe that this great book, will make an awesome movie.


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