OUT NOW! Call Me Church by Tinnean
Church Chetwood, renowned motion picture director, is given an ultimatum by his studio: film a movie with romance or else. Since this is the height of the Depression, and since Church enjoys eating, he reluctantly agrees. He finds a beautiful woman who’s willing to sail on the August Moon to the uncharted island of Iwi Po’o. While there, he makes the discovery of a lifetime, guaranteed to make them all millionaires …
Only it doesn’t exactly turn out like that. The “discovery of a lifetime,” a saber-toothed tiger the press dubs Chetwood’s Kitty, breaks free and runs amok in Manhattan, causing death and mayhem. Months later, Church is facing indictment and a long stretch up the river and has no choice but to lie low until he can get out of town. While nursing his troubles in a saloon, he spots a young man who’s even more down on his luck than Church.
Johnny Smith has been on his own since Black Tuesday, four years earlier, and he does what he has to in order to keep body and soul — what’s left of it — together, even if it isn’t what he ever expected to do. He enters the saloon, hoping for a little warmth and perhaps a meal. What he finds is Church Chetwood, the director whose documentaries have fascinated him for years. Mr. Chetwood buys him that meal, and Johnny willingly goes with him to his rooming house, ready to do whatever Mr. Chetwood wants, even if Mr. Chetwood claims he isn’t “like that.” Is Johnny’s luck about to take a turn for the better? After all, Mr. Chetwood has a plan to get out of town, and if Johnny’s really lucky, maybe Church will let him come along.