Brooklyn-based novelist shares his imagination in adventure story for all ages

A Brooklyn author is putting his decades of inspiration and imagination to good use by penning his first book.

Thirty-seven-year-old Tom Hoefner, an avid fan of retro video games, comics and cartoons, decided to create a series of stories that combine the fun and imagination of those different mediums and created The Unlikely Adventures of Race & Cookie McCloud, a story of a terrible private detective named Race McCloud.

“It’s an all-ages adventure comedy of the second worst private detective in the world and it’s a team-up adventure to find family,” he said. “There’s not really any representation for this genre in publishing. You have children or teen or adult books, but not this. The tone I wanted to set was akin to what is being done with Marvel films as well as ‘Star Wars,’ where any age could appreciate it, whether you’re eight or 80.”

Hoefner’s other inspirations for the work range from cartoons such as “Batman: The Animated Series” and “The Simpsons” to games like “Megaman.”

“I also look up to people like J.K. Rowling and artist Paul Dini,” he said. “A lot of pop culture inspired me growing up. I grew up in the golden age of Nintendo and when superheroes came back. That’s the tone that I went for.”

McCloud and his teenaged niece, spy-in-training Cookie, are on a mission to find their missing secret agent family. The stories contain several zany characters that help the heroes, such as Green Suit Jacket Man, a spoof on Batman. “There are jokes in each section of the book,” Hoefner said. “I’ve tried to take those inspirations and hone my own style. It has a comic voice.”

The road to making Hoefner’s dream become a reality wasn’t an easy one.

“It’s been a long journey,” he said. “In 2009, we performed a play with the characters from the story at the New York Fringe Festival. I realized I wanted to turn it into a book. It was a high adventure to conceptualize so it was easier for me to move forward with the story as a book.”

Due to the unique nature of the book’s genre, Hoefner decided to self-publish the adventure. “It was tough for me to sell it because it doesn’t fit neatly into the genres of the modern publishing industry like teen, adults and kids,” he said.. “If you make an indie film, it means cool creds. It’s the same with bands. But with indie authors, it’s not as easy or looked at the same way. With that said, there is an arena of indie writing getting better and better.”

Despite the obstacles, the author has enjoyed the process as well as the reception from his growing fan base.

“People have reviewed it favorably. It’s received four stars on Amazon. I’ll take it,” he said. “Having it out there after working hard, and getting positive feedback and having people enjoy it , feels good.”

The digital version of Volume 1 of The Unlikely Adventures of Race & Cookie McCloud is on sale at

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