News Release 2020
‘CLARENCE ODBODY’ MAKES RETURN IN “A-S2” NOVELLA
SACRAMENTO—Clarence Odbody, the angel who helped George Bailey realize he had a “wonderful life,” is making a comeback in a new novella titled A-S2: A CLOCKMAKER’S JOURNEY.
A-S2 serves as a prequel to the story underlying the holiday classic IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE*. It features Clarence in the final days of his human life and subsequent training and assignments in the spiritual realm. In the movie, “A-S2” refers to Clarence’s status as an “Angel-Second Class.”
A-S2: A CLOCKMAKER’S JOURNEY is the third long-form fiction release by Sacramento author R. A. Cabral. The book is available on select sites for “pre-order,” and will be available at most online book sellers on the official release date October 16, 2020.
The book opens with Clarence Goodbody’s guardian angel inspiring the clockmaker Christmas Eve 1699 in his shop in Bristol, England. Exactly one year later, following his accidental drowning, Goodbody accepts a position in the Guardian-Angel-In-Training (GAIT) program in heaven. There, his surname is promptly changed to ‘Odbody.’ After two underwhelming missions, Clarence is released and told to make an “attitude adjustment” before applying for reinstatement in GAIT.
In the interim Clarence reacquaints with his former partner Sharah who recruits him to join her on a Mediterranean island run by a renegade band of angels, the Vulkhans. The group’s leader— Phosphorus (aka “The Shining One”)—builds Clarence a premium workshop to enable the master horologist to design and build “the world’s finest clocks.” Clarence follows his passion and at Phos’ urging builds five of the most marvelous clocks in the known world. These are labeled with the leader’s brand LUCIFER LUX and slated for delivery to foreign capitals in the Mediterranean.
When the true purpose of the Vulkhans mission is leaked to Clarence, he challenges Phosphorus, arranges his escape back to the spirit world and resumes training in the GAIT program. His first mission back is familiar to movie fans: assist the suicidal Bedford Falls resident George Bailey on Christmas Eve, 1945.
Cabral says he was inspired to write the novella last year around Christmas after re-reading The IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE Book by Jeanine Basinger. Included in that book are the film’s final shooting script along with early versions of the screenplay
that provided clues about the angel’s background or surroundings
Cabral incorporated in the protagonist’s fictitious backstory.
Director Frank Capra premiered IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE in New York
City December 20, 1946. British actor Henry Travers portrayed the
humble, bumbling Clarence in the movie.
“While writing this story, I strove to maintain in my central character
the values and idiosyncrasies Mr. Capra imbued in his angel, Clarence
Odbody. Mister Travers’ voice guided me throughout this entire
process,” Cabral said.
Karolyn Grimes, the child actress who played Zuzu in the 1946 movie, offered this about the book: “It was very entertaining. Mr. Cabral ventured into quite a few realms. It was not quite how I would have pictured (Clarence’s) life in heaven but the author gave him his own personality and a venue to show his goodness.” Grimes, who turned 80 in July, read an advanced review copy of the novella. “I did enjoy reading it and it was written well,” she noted.
* The novella A-S2 is not affiliated with the motion picture IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, nor sanctioned by the movie’s owner, Paramount.
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