When You Were Me

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Kensington Books, Sep 30, 2008 - Fiction - 426 pages
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All work and no play have made Jack Ackerly a dull boy. It's also made him very rich. Now, at age 53, he regrets devoting his youth to capitalism over hedonism. Alas he can't turn back time;but according to a self-styled "fusion witch" named Francesca, he can trade places with a willing participant. He just has to find a hot young stud ready to make the switch.

Enter Corey Szaslo, 26, a jaded party boy whose life of sex, drugs, and barhopping has left him with no education, no career, no assets, and no prospects. Jumping into the skin of a retired millionaire seems a fair way out of this predicament, even if it means doubling his age and adding five inches to his waistline.

Faster than you can say, "Be careful what you wish for," Jack and Corey are living each other's lives to the fullest. But their successfully swapped lives soon begin to come apart at the seams. And when Jack's former lover comes back, begging "Jack" for another chance, all bets are off, driving both Jack and Corey into unsuspecting competition--and resulting in a climax that takes each of them farther beyond their essential selves than they ever dreamed they'd go.

"Rodi's quick-paced satire of the joys and sorrows of body swapping is one kind of perfect vacation and beach reading." --"Booklist"

"Another fabulous and funny book." --After Elton.com

Robert Rodi is the author of six novels, including "Fag Hag, Closet Case, What They Did to Princess Paragon, Drag Queen, Kept Boy, " and "Bitch Goddess." He lives in Chicago with his partner, Jeffrey Smith, and a constantly shifting number of dogs.


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About the author (2008)

Robert Rodi was born in Chicago in the conformist 1950s, grew up in the insurrectionist 1960s, came of age in the hedonist 1970s, and went to work in the elitist 1980s. This roller-coaster ride has left him with a distinct aversion to isms of any kind; it also left him with an ear for hypocrisy, cant, and platitudes that allowed him, in the 1990s, to become a much-lauded social satirist.

His first novel,Fag Hag, was published in 1991 and was swiftly translated into Italian, French, German, and Japanese. It was followed byCloset Case(1992),What They Did to Princess Paragon(1994),Drag Queen(1995),Kept Boy(1997),Bitch Goddess(2002), andWhen You Were Me(2007). His first nonfiction book,Dogged Pursuit: My Year of Competing Dusty, the World's Least Likely Agility Dogwas released by Hudson Street Press in 2009.

Robert's shorter fiction can be found in a number of anthologies, includingMen On Men 5, His,andSandman: Book of Dreams. His novellaGlad, Gladder, Gladyswas serialized online at USAToday.com. His literary criticism has appeared in the pages ofThe Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, NewCity,andThe Harvard GayandLesbian Review.

Robert is the creator of several comic-book series, including4 Horsemen, Codename: Knockout,andThe Crossovers. He was a founding member of the Chicago-based performance art troupe, The Pansy Kings, who were active throughout the 1990s, and he wrote sketches for the Live Bait Theater's revues Junk Food and Dear Jackie: The Queen of Camelot Remembered.

Robert still lives in Chicago, in a century-old Queen Anne house with his partner Jeffrey Smith and a constantly shifting number of dogs.

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