The Man With the Green Suitcase

The Man with the Green Suitcase:

Dee Doanes



His face is wrinkled, his clothes are tattered and his mind is sharp. This homeless man creates an image that most would shy away from and steer clear of if he came near you. So, why are so many drawn to this man? What about him creates a feeling of warmth, caring and hopeful. As we meet this intriguing man he is walking the streets searching the garbage cans, alleys and streets for something to store in his precious green suitcase. Coming upon some expensive items he quickly locks them away within the confines of his green suitcase. Battered, falling apart yet the most precious item in his life he quickly rushes away from the scene to encounter a police officer. Dropping the items in front of him he explains he thought they might have been stolen leaves them there for the officer to ponder the rest by himself. Moving along even further he finds himself outside of a building he has not frequented for quite some time. Entering what most would call a soup kitchen he and many others hope for a hot meal. Entering he meets Eddie and hears his story, his hopes for a job and the kindness of the new person in charge telling him she will help with that endeavor in any way she can. But, first she seems drawn to our homeless man and requests that he speaks with her in private. What happens will definitely make you wonder just who he is and what kind of power he has to create the visions that come to this woman and thought entering her mind as she touches his face and cannot believe what she sees. Then we meet Gerald Foley whose goal in life is to have a lucrative restaurant business at any cost. Going to a business meeting and collecting tenant rent checks we hear the voice3 of one woman whose life he ruined. A landlord that raised the rent of her husband’s shoe repair shop so high he took his own life rather than lose the business. What she says to him would normally rattle anyone else, but not Gerald. Author Dee Doanes creates the suspense from the first page as the reader wants to know what the connection between the man and all of the rest of the characters might be and how their lives might intertwine.


Gerald meets with his business partner Tony to learn that another one of his enterprises will go forward as one business owner decides to sell to them. But, why as thoughts about his encounter with the old woman drift in and out of his mind. Graft, strong arming, lies, deceit and greasing palms are just some of the high handed business tactics Gerald used as he questions his business partner about their next venture. But, is he in so deep that he won’t be able to see his way out?


Valerie enters our story as a young girl caught in her own web of trying to make money even if it is the oldest business in the world. Clients wanting her attention and in between working another job but she and Gerard are about to meet and their lives will definitely intertwine as his business partner tries to hook them all up. As you hear her thoughts and listen to the interactions you realize that she is not into what she has been doing for 15 years. Reenter Gerard whose nightmares are plaguing him and who realizes he might just need a life change. When Gerard approaches Tony and decides to strike out on his own the threats are heard loud and clear but he’s determined to change his life for the better. Valerie hopes to make a change too but finding a real job does not seem to be happening and making money the way she does is not how she really wants to spend her life. Both Gerard and Valerie are drawn to Open Door and begin volunteering. Gerard donates not only his time but also money and helps repair things and more for Lee and the residents. Valerie is kind and caring and even encourages one man named Ralph to seek out his family knowing that family is vital and important to her and she hopes he will find his way back to his. But, things do not stay the same and both Valerie and Gerard have visions. Gerard after approaching our elusive man with the green suitcase and Valerie thinking about her mother and remembering something she would soon forget. But, fate has drawn these two together but Gerard is now facing another battle that he hoped would not come. As Tony sues him for millions and he has to confess his crimes to his lawyer just what will happen to him and his career still remains to be seen. Gerard is rich and a real estate owner trying to go legit. Valerie is a prostitute trying to change her life. Each chapter is told about one character and sometimes the author blends them together as the narrator relates the events and the reader can experience the incidents first hand as we all wonder just who this man really is and why is he there?


Gerald and Valerie connect and decide to break all ties with their pasts. The visions provided to them by the old man have altered their thinking and changed their perspectives on life. But, Gerald’s past comes front and center in the present and he has one more hard decision to make when he encounters an old girlfriend named Christy who was part of the vision he remembered. But, when he and the old man have the same vision there has to be a reason why their paths and thoughts keep coming together. Added in Valerie recalls her life as a child, her mother’s tirades about her appearance, her school grades and her treatment of her as she learns some harsh truths.


Providing the visions as if he were the medium to their pasts and futures both Gerald and Valerie hope that in the future their choices will be better but first both have to tell each other some difficult truths. Can Gerard tell her about his business dealings and partnership with Tony? Can she tell him about her clients and her relationship with Tony? Sensing the pressure within him the old man decides to take a bus and leave town but what happens at the station is sad, frustrating and yet enlighten more than just the reader but one young lady he meets that his purpose at the Open Door and with Gerald is far from over. The author flashes the scenes between Valerie and Gerald like a weaver intertwines each strand of hair as she creates an extension or weave so delicately and précising you hardly see the openings or where one ends and the other begins.


Observations can be keen and some quite profound to provide the needed ingredients to solve a problem. So, why does the old man want to secretly observe Gerald if he would prefer to steer clear of him? Why did he provide him with more than one vision? Why is he reacting this way?


Returning to Open Door he sees Ralph whose life has finally taken a upward climb and extends a more than just a helping hand to the old man. But, he refuses to accept it. Enter in a young girl named Chantal who finds her way to Open Door and one vision comes true for a special woman. Getting to know this young lady we realize that she has a past that she would prefer to stay hidden. Secrets, lies, betrayals and hopefully forgiveness for those that have wronged others and those that have received the wrath inflicted upon them. A lawsuit that could ruin Gerard and a past that could destroy Valerie and take away any happiness they have as she finally finds a job she can be proud of. The secret about her mother is revealed, her connection with Open Door told and the reader gets to understand the struggles that she encountered and lived through for too long. The author then reveals the harsh realties of what happened to Chantal and why she is so lonely and bitter now. Will she allow anyone to help her?

The old man is the central connection to all of these characters yet he is devoid of any memory of his life except for the last two years. He is sane, he is smart and yet he has no idea who he is but provides the conscience and hope for those who have strayed. You have to look within the souls and at the eyes of each character to really see their inner beings and truths before they are revealed. Whether you consider this paranormal with a touch of psychic injected the Man with the Green Suitcase will definitely make you wonder about yourself the next time you stray and decide to rethink your actions. Can you truly run away from your past and all that you did before? Can you change the way you are and create a more positive life?

As the powerful ending draws this book to a close the revelations made will surprise the reader and hope that the author continues the journey. Just where this man winds up and what happens to all of the characters you will have to read for yourself when you enter Open Door and meet Gerald, Valerie, Lee and of course The Man with The Green Suitcase. Just how far will someone go to release his or her past and have a future? Just how far will someone go to find his or her way?


This is one book that will have you asking these questions and more.


Fran Lewis: Reviewer









One Response

  1. […] Gabina 49 Book Reviews by Fran Lewis […]

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