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Roastbeef's Promise: When Your Dad's Dying Wish Is to Have His Ashes Sprinkled in Each State, What's a Son to Do?
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Roastbeef's Promise: When Your Dad's Dying Wish Is to Have His Ashes Sprinkled in Each State, What's a Son to Do?

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  89 ratings  ·  45 reviews
In this, his first novel, David Jerome combines two of his passions: travel and comedy writing, into one warm, and funny, travel-adventure. A Promise, An Urn, And An Atlas is loosely based on the author's experiences while visiting the 48 contiguous United States during the mid-1990s.
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published March 1st 2009 by Smack Books, LLC
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Average rating 3.44  · 
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Start your review of Roastbeef's Promise: When Your Dad's Dying Wish Is to Have His Ashes Sprinkled in Each State, What's a Son to Do?
Sep 06, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: humor, first-reads
David Jerome's novel about an affable loser who sprinkles his father's ashes in 49 states is very funny and quite alarmingly compassionate. The author claims that some, though not all of the events, were taken from his own travels which leads me to wonder which ones are for real and which ones aren't. Some critics have complained that many of the events are unbelievable but, having traveled throughout the states extensively myself, I could believe about 75 percent could be based on actual experi ...more
Jul 10, 2010 rated it really liked it
To hear him tell it, in this rollicking account of the most disaster-prone road trip ever, if it weren’t for bad luck, poor young Jim “Roastbeef” Hume would have had no luck at all. He has embarked on a marathon journey through all 48 continental US states, in obedience to his adoptive father’s deathbed wish to scatter his ashes in every one of them. With not very much in his pocket, or a particular itinerary in mind, he drops out of college and sets out bravely, with 3/5ths of his father’s ashe ...more
Emi Bevacqua
Mar 05, 2010 rated it liked it
Quirky, quick read about an adopted son named Roastbeef who decides to honor his beloved father's dying request that his ashes be strewn throughout the contiguous United States. At the time this promise is made Alzheimers has the dad believing he's FDR, but nevertheless Roastbeef is a 21 year old of his word, and doesn't have any apparent other commitments so off he goes on a crazy adventure. There were a couple egregious editing errors in the beginning, for example on page 16 "we road the numbe ...more
Nov 22, 2010 rated it really liked it
What a marvelously funny novel. Since I’m usually not a fan of “Road Stories” I was not particularly drawn to this book but I’m really glad I made the effort to read it. It’s the story of Jim “Roastbeef” Hume who promised his dying father that when the time came he would scatter his ashes in every state of the contiguous lower forty eight. His adventures in pursuit of this mission are not only unpredictable but outrageously hilarious. The author has worked as a joke writer on various TV shows as ...more
Jun 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Quirky, fun, good times.
Easy read. Did I mention fun?
Melissa ownsbey
i thought the cover was good
the book was great it made nme laugh
so hard i cried
great book i won this book on good reads
Lisa Hura
Nov 05, 2011 rated it it was ok
What do you want your loved ones to do with your body when you die? I’ve actually had this conversation with my family; both my parents want to be cremated. I also want to be cremated, and though I’m not entirely certain what I want to do with my ashes, I hate the thought of them sitting in an urn on someone’s mantle. So I liked the premise behind Roastbeef’s Promise: Roastbeef’s father has died and he wants his son to sprinkle his ashes in each of the contiguous 48 states. One helluva road trip ...more
I went to the L.A. Times Festival of Books and met David Jerome. He was offering a free copy of this book to bloggers, and on his insistence, I took one. He said the book didn't sell as well as he'd wished when he published it three years ago (it did receive some critical acclaim), and this was a final attempt to garner some new readers. He seemed like a nice guy. The premise sounded familiar and intriguing, so I was looking forward to reading it.

Knowing Jerome's situation, I really wanted to l
Aug 05, 2012 rated it liked it
As Jim "Roastbeef" Hume's father lay dying he extracted a promise from his son that after cremation Roastbeef would sprinkle some of his ashes in the 48 contiguous states. Roastbeef, being a rather uninvolved college student in Maryland at the time, decided it sounded like a great idea and set off on his road trip shortly after his father's passing. The journey would take hime 15 months and by the time he returned home to Maryland he had used just about every mode of transportation available inc ...more
Carrie Kilgore
Oct 30, 2013 rated it liked it
Tough book to rate... The writing is competent for the most part, and many times the humor made me smile. But if you're looking for character development, this is not the place. A son promises to sprinkle his dad's ashes in all 48 contiguous states... and we travel along with him. We meet some quirky characters, we have car trouble, we have money issues. Travel stories can obviously work--just think of all the road trip movies you like. The difference, of course, is that most hand you a couple o ...more
Melissa Guimont
Jan 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, travel
The plot of this book grabbed me from the start; an adopted son makes a promise to drive across the 48 states and scatter his dad's ashes in each one. It's nice to see a different idea for a fiction title for a change. I didn't know if it would be as funny as the book jacket described, but it was very much so. The main character, Roastbeef, drives a borrowed car that gets stolen, rides a moped and gets pulled over multiple times, hitchhikes a lot until he encounters his first weirdo, rides a bik ...more
Mar 07, 2010 rated it did not like it
Soory, Mr. Jerome. I wanted to like your book, but I couldn't get past how absurdly ridiculous it is. The premise itself is a winner, but it just isn't plausible to have something incredible and wacky happen in every single state. This much wackiness just doesn't happen to people in real life.

Example for readers who don't understand what I mean: in one sequence, the narrator's brakes fail as he's careening down a mountain. Okay. we're still good. Things like this happen all the time. BUT then th
Apr 07, 2010 rated it did not like it
I like to buy the occasional book published by independent publishers for the library. I thought this one looked good - but then I also thought it was non-fiction.

First there were the grammar errors, your instead of you're, and extra quotations, "Like this," he said."

Then there was the narrative style. It was very "and then, and then, and then, and then..." And then (he he) the most ridiculous things happened to this guy in EVERY STATE. I can understand one or two things, but this was just too m
Michael Delaware
Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
A completely entertaining book from start to finish. I won my copy of this book from a Goodreads contest, and the story interested me from the start. The story is a humorous account of one man who decides to fulfill his father's dying request to have his ashes scattered in all 48 continuous states in the U.S.

I do not want to spoil the story by giving too many details, but I will say that every chapter seemed to bring to new levels the outrageous situations that the main character got himself in
Apr 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, debut
A great debut!

After a co-worker discovered this, I just knew I had to read it. Unfortunately, we do not own this so I had to borrow it from another library. A big thanks to the Ashland, OH Public Library for sharing!

John "Roastbeef" Hume is a 21-year old college student. All his life, his dad has always been a staunch republican, but things quickly change and "towards the end", he thinks he is FDR!

The subtitle of this book is "When your dad's dying wish is to have his ashes sprinkled in each st
David Ketelsen
Apr 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
I won this book on GoodReads.

David Jerome's first book, Roastbeef's Promise is a funny and oddly compelling road adventure that follows Jim "Roastbeef" Hume on his quest to spread his father's ashes across the lower 48 states. As you might expect, few things go right for young Roastbeef and that's what makes the story work and contributes to the amusing quality of the plot.

Across the span of a year and a half Roastbeef Hume spreads the remains of both his father and one of his father's military
Colleen Estep
Mar 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: review
Roastbeef's Promise by David Jerome was a fun enjoyable read. I was glad to win my copy through Goodreads.
When Jim Hume's adopted Dad is diagnosed with Alzheimers, the most aggressive case the doctor's had ever seen, his time on earth and his mind in fact, is limited. He asks his son to promise him that he will have his body cremated and that he will scatter his ashes in the lower 48.
Jim, who wasn't doing well in college and was quick to decide he must keep this promise and takes a leave to
Apr 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Given To Me For An Honest Review

If you want to laugh, cry and hope you have to read this book. It is about a son's promise to sprinkle his father's ashes in all 48 continuous states. It begins easy enough but before long trouble with a capital T comes along. This story takes you along with his car problems. He before too long has no car. Staying in a hostel Smelly is not the word for it. No money. On and On and On. But along the way he runs into those who are so kind as to help him along his way
Jan 13, 2011 added it
Not a compelling read but a pleasant and amusing one. This guy who's spreading his dad's ashes across the Lower 48 has just about every obstacle you can imagine placed in his path, but somehow keeps on going. And he does it in good spirits, meeting a variety of characters along the way. His varied means of transportation and his methods of generating enough cash to keep going are ingenious and very entertaining. This method of interment sure beats a dreary funeral and a hole in the ground. The p ...more
Jul 12, 2013 rated it it was ok
The book Roastbeef's Promise is the story of a young man who takes the ultimate road trip to fulfill his adoptive father's dying wish--to sprinkle his ashes in the 48 contiguous states. Although some of the situations are over-the-top and laugh-out-loud, I just could not find myself liking the main character and I was frankly put off with many of his exploits. Maybe I am just a little too old to appreciate this book--Roastbeef and my son are about the same age. I received this book in a Goodread ...more
Oct 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book will entertain you, but how it entertains you depends on your age. For young people, it will be an adventure. For the middle age, it will make you ponder life. And for the elderly, it will make you wonder how far your family will go to fulfill your wishes, even after you're gone.

On the last few pages of the book there are directions, for those interested, to send pictures of the places mentioned where Roastbeef traveled. I am definitely going to do this as I am about on hour away from
Jan 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: travel lovers who arent afraid to laugh
david jerome gave me his book, “Roastbeef’s Promise” (now available in stores) this year at my tender age of 32 and man did it hit home.

every action-packed chapter, every hair-raising sub story within the already-stimulating story, every dramatic character encounter harmoniously strung every string in my vangabondaged heart. if you can’t already tell, i highly recommend it.

for more information on this awesome book visit
Jun 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
I won this book in a First reads giveaway. I would give the story 3.5 stars. A dying father asks his (adopted) son to spread his ashes throughout the 48 contiguous states. I enjoyed the adventure, it kept me interested right up to the end. I thought the book was well written and the words flowed smoothly. My only reservation would be that some of the things that happened to Roastbeef were a little over the top. Overall the book was satisfying and I would recommend this to my friends.
Sep 23, 2013 rated it liked it
I was hoping this novel would be similar in style to the Dave Barry and Carl Hiassen books that I enjoy. However, it didn't quite hit the mark. Although the characters were zany and the adventures were entertaining, I didn't quite feel immersed. Also, inaccuracies related to some of the cities in the plot that I've visited, didn't sit well with me. (Thanks to Goodreads First Reads for the free copy of this book!)
Robert Keck
Jan 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Sure, the road trip story has been done to death. But this road trip is about what happens after death. I love gallows humor and this book is really, really funny. Wait until you meet Uncle Spud. Hop in the back seat, don't spill the urn and be ready to pass yourself off as a lesbian's boyfriend.
Michael Oates
May 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Sometimes we read thinking novels, sometimes we read what are often referred to as candy bars. Jerome's novel Roastbeef's Promise is simply sweet humor that's good for the tummy but bad for the teeth. Nothing more. Try to read into it further than that and you'll spoil your appetite. So eat your James Joyce and your Faulkner and when you've finished your Hemingway you can have Roastbeef.
Jan 24, 2009 rated it it was ok
The premise is fascinating, but the author doesn't develop the narrator into an individual. The attempts at humor seem cliched and a little cold at some points and the main character's gradual development also too predictable.
Suzan Jackson
Apr 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: travel, humor
A funny road trip novel (read during my recent road trip!) about a young man who fulfill's his father's last wish to have his ashes sprinkled in every state. Read my full review at:
Aug 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I found the main character a little difficult to relate to, but the pace and flow of the book kept me engaged and interested to see what would happen next. Overall I found the book to be an enjoyable read.
Connie Stewart
Aug 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I am still reading this and I love it! I can't wait to finish so I can loan it to my friends. I have been reading it in the break room at work and have been telling co workers about it. I love the characters that he meets. I just can't put it down. It is a very fun read.
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