Love and Crime: Stories by @VSKemanis #romanticsuspense #suspense #books


Love and Crime Stories - Half size

 

Title: Love and Crime: Stories

Author: V.S. Kemanis

Genre: Short Stories/Psychological Suspense/Literary Fiction

Publisher: Opus Nine Books

 

Book Blurb:

Loves big and small, crimes forgiven or avenged. These are the themes that drive the eleven diverse stories in this new collection of psychological suspense from storyteller V.S. Kemanis.

 

Meet the husband and wife team Rosemary and Reuben, master chefs known to sprinkle a dash of magic into every dish. Lucille Steadman, a dazed retiree who can’t explain why she’s left her husband, only to discover, too late, the meaning of love and commitment in the most surprising place. Franklin DeWitt, an esteemed ballet critic who witnesses—or abets?—a bizarre criminal plot to topple a beautiful Soviet ballerina. Rosalyn Bleinstorter, a washed-up defense attorney whose stubborn belief in her own street savvy leads her unwittingly into a romantic and criminal association with an underworld figure.

 

These are just a few of the colorful characters you’ll get to know in these pages, where all is fair in love and crime. While the endings to these tales are not always sweet or predictable, and self-deception is rarely rewarded, the lessons come down hard and are well learned.

 

This collection includes stories originally published in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The William & Mary Review, Lynx Eye, and Iconoclast, and previously unpublished stories.

 

Excerpt:  

ROSEMARY AND REUBEN

 

ANDERSON IS SINGLE by choice and always has been. True to his one love, he treats himself to an epicurean delight every Saturday night. At this stage of his life, he’s indifferent to money and mortality and gladly indulges to excess. Only the finest restaurants in Manhattan will do.

 

Before stepping out, Anderson trims the goatee and puts on his evening best. Invariably he dines alone, although he isn’t without a list of possible companions, female and male. Still, there’s no wish for a lover to dine with. On his evenings out, he indulges a craving of a different sort, the sensual experience of taste, texture, and aroma, the heft of silver and gleam of crystal, the lengthening and savoring of time. For a few hours he forgets his life—everything it is and is not. A full belly and a buzz from the grape will do that.

 

On this particular Saturday, Anderson is fortunate to have a reservation at the celebrated Ole Factory in the Village. Competition is high. It’s rumored that, after thirty-five years in business, Rosemary and Reuben Blandrigard will soon be retiring.

 

At seven o’clock, Anderson alights from a taxicab, braves an icy blast, and darts over the frozen pavement into the restaurant. The small foyer is square, dim, and hushed like a confessional, with a single, warm light directed from the ceiling toward the opposite wall.

 

Anderson is drawn to the sepia-toned photograph of the owners, framed in a simple mahogany rectangle, displayed on the eggshell wall. Rosemary lovingly gazes at Reuben, and Reuben gazes at Anderson with a look of glazed contentment.

 

Past the foyer and over the threshold, a young hostess looks up. Anderson squares his shoulders and announces his name. She seems to know him. “How are you this evening, Mr. Anderson?”

 

“Fine. Just fine, thank you.” He strokes the goatee and drops his eyes to her neck.

 

“Is this your first time at the Ole Factory?”

 

“Yes, indeed it is,” he informs her neck. “I’ve run the gauntlet successfully it seems.”

 

“And you’ve earned your reward.”

 

“I look forward to it.”

 

He senses her amusement, feigned or real, from the tension in her neck.

 

“Right this way, please.” She turns, sending her long skirt into a gentle swirl, and guides him at a leisurely pace through the well-spaced dining room of about twenty tables. The décor is spare but pleasing. In the far corner, a small, round table awaits him. The single chair is backed into the corner, allowing him a view outward into the room—a thoughtful arrangement. At some establishments he’s made to face the wall, and at others, an empty, second chair stands in silent rebuke of his social failings.

 

Anderson sits and orders an aperitif. Glancing at the menu, he senses, in the periphery, the sexual murmurings of a young, starry-eyed couple at the next table. Against his will, he’s aroused by a fleeting emotional stirring. The moment passes, giving way to the pleasing texture in his hand—the single sheet of cardstock. This is the message printed on the front:

 

“Welcome to the Ole Factory. We’ve created a unique menu for tonight’s meal. Let your server know if your pleasure is One or The Other. Your hosts, Rosemary and Reuben.”

 

Always a surprise, always superb. (The critics agree.) Each meal at the Ole Factory is specially created for the clientele, a process that begins with a telephone interview to vet personal aversions and food allergies. Simpatico tastes of prospective patrons are carefully matched, and a guest list is compiled for each sitting before any reservation is confirmed. It can take a year to get on a list.

 

As a successful applicant, Anderson has won the right to ponder his two options for the evening. Without much thought, he selects “The Other” before flipping the card over. Printed on the back is a short paragraph entitled “The Story of Rosemary and Reuben.” Legend might be the more descriptive term. Everything about them is legend, including their habit of circulating through the dining room during coffee and dessert. They appear at the kitchen door, wrench apart like cloven chopsticks, and weave different routes through the tables, separately greeting their guests.

 

As he sips his aperitif and reads The Story a second time, Anderson silently hopes that Rosemary will be the one to visit him at the end of his meal.

 

Two and a half hours later, he gets his wish. At nine thirty, she emerges from the kitchen with Reuben. Nearly touching, they suspend all movement for barely an eye blink. Reluctantly they part. With a quick, light step, Rosemary toes a straight line along the wall to Anderson’s table. She’s a roundish, dwarflike woman of about Anderson’s age, with silvery-gray hair pulled tightly back into a doughnut at the nape of her neck, exposing delicately-lobed, naked ears. Coming to a halt in dramatic proximity, she’s not much taller than Anderson as he sits. With a familiar air, she regards him from beneath jet-black eyebrows. Hold still please, says the creator of that sepia-toned photograph.

 

“Mr. Anderson. We’re very glad you could come this evening.”

 

His heart races in confusion. Her visit to his table fulfills his dearest wish, but everything else has been less than expected, troublingly so. He doesn’t understand the meaning of the past two and a half hours. He wants to tell her, but the words are bottled under a well-aged cork.

 

Before Anderson can speak, Rosemary lifts a bent index finger and rests the knuckle on the tip of her sharply-pointed nose. The finger covers her nostrils, the fisted hand covers her mouth.

 

Anderson searches for polite words but finds only the single, obvious truth. “The service was excellent, thank you.”

 

With a nod, she removes her hand. “It’s been our pleasure. Is there anything else we can get for you? Anything at all?” Pausing after the last word, the silence that follows announces her omission. She hasn’t inquired whether he enjoyed his dinner.

 

 

*     *     *

 

Buy Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Love-Crime-Stories-V-S-Kemanis-ebook/dp/B01N5X277X

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-and-crime-v-s-kemanis/1125784694?ean=2940154010600

Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/love-and-crime-stories/id1205788364?mt=11

Kobo: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/love-and-crime-stories/id1205788364?mt=11

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/703882

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34238154-love-and-crime

 

V.S. Kemanis - 1

 

Author Biography:

V.S. Kemanis grew up in the East Bay Area of California in a family with six amazing siblings and parents passionate about politics, social issues, theater and music. Mealtimes were often raucous, stimulating, intellectual and fun gatherings in a household full of family and interesting guests, musicians, actors, artists, professors and university students.

 

Ms. Kemanis holds a B.A. in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley, and a J.D. from the University of Colorado, School of Law, at Boulder. In her legal career, she has been a criminal prosecutor of street crime and organized crime for county and state agencies, argued criminal appeals for the prosecution and defense, conducted complex civil litigation, and worked as a court attorney for state appellate courts. She is also an accomplished dancer of classical ballet, modern jazz and contemporary styles and has performed, taught and choreographed in California, Colorado and New York.

 

Dozens of short stories by Ms. Kemanis have been published in noted literary journals and award-winning collections. Her three novels in the Dana Hargrove legal mystery series draw on her personal experience in criminal law, juggling the needs of family with a high-powered legal career. Ms. Kemanis is a member of the Mystery Writers of America.

 

Social Media Links:

Website:  http://www.vskemanis.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/V.S.Kemanis.Author

Twitter: https://twitter.com/VSKemanis

 

 

Love Gritty, #DarkRomance? 1-Click WetWork Episode 3 by @CadenceDenton #amreading #ASMSG


WetWork Ep3 WEB 06152015

 

Title: WetWork, Dark Man Case Files, Episode 3

This is the third installment in my gritty, sexy, hitman serial. David Morace aka Dark Man is the main character.

Author: Cadence Denton

Genre: Contemporary Romance Suspense/Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

WetWork, Dark Man Case Files, Episode 3 is a gritty, action-packed romantic serial (30k). Filled with pulsing passion and heart pounding intrigue, it is the third episode in this hot, new series by author, Cadence Denton. Each installment ends in a cliffhanger.

Things have gone from bad to worse for Dark Man. First, he was set up to be the fall guy for the Guild, the family who’d named him pariah and turned their backs on him. Next, his current employers decided to terminate him with extreme prejudice. And then there’s Angel—the fact she’d called him by his brother’s name when they made love was the cherry on top of this crap cake. It almost made being the Medic’s new lab rat a relief. Almost.

He’d like to bury his feelings for Angel, but he hadn’t signed on for what the Medic planned: to turn him into a robot with a pulse.

Add another covert group with its own agenda to the already crowded field of adversaries and the conspiracy web grows wider. With his list of enemies multiplying by the minute, Dark Man’s chances of surviving are slim to none.

He needs a miracle. He needs his Angel.

 

Exclusive Extended 18+ Excerpt:

Angel sat at a small table inside the Sixty-First Street Starbucks on Galveston Island studiously avoiding eye contact with the elderly couple on her right while her stomach growled at the fragrant scent of cinnamon rolls and fresh scones.

The old woman’s face had drawn up in a mask of disapproval, her nose crinkled like she smelled an open landfill instead of the heady aroma of freshly ground coffee beans and pastries. She shot a barrage of narrow-eyed glares Angel’s way while her husband’s gaze was altogether different. The old man looked at Angel like she was a three-inch thick New York strip steak. She’d watched him swipe a strand of drool from quivering lips before his gnarled hand retreated beneath the table to do God knew what.

Once more she fought the urge to tug at her skirt. What was the point? It wasn’t like pulling on it was going to make it one millimeter longer.

The old lady sniffed then turned her attention back to her ensainada. She took a bite and Angel’s stomach growled so loudly the table of teenage surfers on the other side of the old farts heard it and snickered. Angel sighed. She’d wanted to order the yummy coiled sweet bread topped with powdered sugar with her coffee, but sadly could only scratch up enough coins to pay for the iced caffe Americano.

She didn’t dare use her credit cards. The last thing she needed was a Chernyy headhunter showing up which would be the first thing to happen if she used her plastic. Anyway, she needed the caffeine more than the Danish so her empty stomach would just have to suck it up. Unhappy with the arrangement, her stomach complained again. Geez, where was her coffee? Angel glanced back at the barista, saw her cup was now third in line and sighed again. Who would have thought Starbucks would be this busy on a Sunday morning?

She crossed her legs and mentally rolled her eyes when she heard the old man slurp in a breath while the sour old lady hissed, “Shameless hussy.”

Yeah. Well, she’d just have to suck it up, too. Angel peered out the wall of glass. The surf was as gray as the morning sky. It reflected her mood.

She was a legend in the assassins’ community. Her reputation as lethal and invincible was almost universal. Why did she feel so helpless? Worse than that, she felt fragile, like she’d shatter into a zillion pieces at the slightest touch.

“Ahren?”

Starting, she looked around to see the young man at the counter. Her order was ready. She’d forgotten that she’d given him her true name. Tugging again at the disobedient skirt, she rose to her feet.

“Sweet Jesus on a donkey.” The old man’s voice was hoarse. With her peripheral vision, Angel watched his wife lean over and give his arm a smack.

“Oww… whaddidya do that for?”

“C’mon you old coot. We’re leaving.”

“Why? I haven’t finished my breakfast.”

“Oh, yes you have,” she snapped. Draping her purse over her shoulder, she marched him to the door, her gnarled hand gripping his wrist while he cast longing looks back at Angel.

After adding sweetener to the coffee, Angel returned to her seat, sipping contentedly as the strong brew hit her stomach and silenced its demands at least for a while. With the dual distractions of hunger and lecherous old men taken out of the equation, her thoughts returned like homing pigeons to what was really bothering her. DM.

Angel picked at the neon pink fingernail polish on her thumb, her coffee forgotten. Why… why had she left DM that way?

They’d made love—sex on the beach had been everything she dreamed it would be. So, why had she ditched him?

Come now, Ahren. Who do you think you’re fooling?

Damien—God! She’d actually called DM Damien when her orgasm flooded her. Damien was DM’s identical twin. His brother. His enemy. Had he noticed? Of course he’d noticed. She grimaced at the memory. DM had stiffened for that instant before he’d lost himself inside her. She scratched off another line of polish, refusing to think about the sensuous dream that had taken her afterwards. Damien and her. Together in a shower. Their lovemaking had seemed so real.

“No. I won’t think about that. It didn’t happen. It will never happen. It was a dream… just a dream,” she whispered, as if saying it aloud would make it true.

“They say if you talk to yourself you converse with a fool.”

Angel’s head snapped up, her breath catching in her chest. She knew that voice. “Gregor?” Unable to do anything but croak.

Gregor Utegaliyev, the Director of Chernyy, was a man in his middle years. His dark hair was close cropped and threaded with silver. Standing just at average height, his looks were misleading. His cheeks were ruddy and his lips had a natural tendency to curve up. He looked harmless. That was until you met his eyes. His eyes, shrouded by heavy, black brows, were coldly intelligent and dangerous.

Her eighteen months with Chernyy had shown her what Gregor was capable of. She’d watched him cut a man to pieces in front of the man’s family then turn and give the victim’s children a pat on the head and a couple rubles each before burning down their squalid home. The smell of burnt cabbage and sausage had stayed with her for days. “Life is hard,” he’d explained after they’d returned to base and were enjoying a glass of vodka. “Better for them to learn that early.” Cold, Russian pragmatism at its finest, that was Gregor.

Angel glanced wildly from him to where her handbag, with hand gun inside, rested just out of reach on a chair and cursed silently. It sat in easy reach to Gregor. As if driving that home, he unbuttoned his sport coat to reveal his rig.

With little to lose, she made a grab for the purse, but he easily stopped her clumsy attempts, his gun clenched in his fist. The barrel looked as big as a cannon and it was pointed at her head. Slowly, she shrugged and put her hands back on the table.  With a quick glance around, Gregor sat down.

“You’re… here,” she said, stupidly stating the obvious. She’d expected a Chernyy hit team, but not the Director of Chernyy.

He dipped his chin once, a wry twist to his lips. “You could say I was in the neighborhood.”

Angel sat back in her chair. “You won’t shoot me in Starbucks. Not in front of all these witnesses.”

“Won’t I? I’ve made countless hits in places more crowded than this.”

She’d give him that. “But not here in the United States. There are cameras everywhere and people with cell phones to record your actions. It would cause an international incident.”

Gregor’s eyes narrowed for a moment then he sighed. With a shrug, he slipped his gun back into his rig and smiled broadly. His teeth, she noticed, were stained. As if in answer to that observation, he pulled a pack of Marlboro cigarettes from his jacket, stuck one in his mouth and lit it, ignoring the hostile glares from neighboring diners. He inhaled deeply then blew a stream of smoke toward the ceiling. “Marlboro,” he said turning the cigarette sideways so she could see it.

She shrugged. What the hell did she care?

“It is the brand of cigarettes American cowboys smoke.”

“Great,” she said faintly. Okay, now that was weird.

Seeming satisfied with her response, Gregor again inhaled deeply, savoring the taste of the tobacco. Exhaling another plume of smoke, he focused on Angel. “Did you truly think I would not learn you’re a Guild plant?” He smiled when she stiffened.

She’d known he’d found her out. Hadn’t she survived the kill team at the Four Seasons Hotel? But the truth of the matter was she’d thought it was DM they’d been after. She was convinced that she was still flying under the radar—which just showed the depth of her own self-deception. Damn, she hated when she did that.

Taking a sip of tepid coffee, she said, “Did you really think I wouldn’t notice you’d joined with the Chinese to take me out?” She watched him dip his chin as though conceding a point in their verbal chess match.

“You survived the operation, so naturally I knew you and Morace would figure out the alliances.” The thick cloud of smoke he exhaled veiled his eyes.

Glancing about, Angel noted the blond giant, Nikita, who was always a jolly flirt, sitting next to the restrooms’ doors while surly Dimitri, never her friend, sat at the table beside the exit and sent dark glances around the room.  Looking through the window, she noted a charcoal gray SUV, Chernyy’s vehicle of choice, across the street. A trill of fear danced up her spine. She was alone. Alone as in singular. There was no backup. There would be no backup. She had only herself, the gun she couldn’t reach, and a couple clips she wouldn’t be using.  Trapped. Good and well trapped.

She heard wind chimes and frowned. Where was it coming from? The soft tinkling erupted again and she peered down at her cell phone, confounded. That was not her usual text tone. Tilting the phone up, Angel ran a thumb across the screen.

Chernyy is here

No shit, she thought, stealthily turning the phone to silent mode.

Come outside. We r w8ting

Using extreme care, she was just able to press ? and send. In an instant the reply came back and she nearly fainted in relief when she read the single word: Natalya

She blinked, realizing that Gregor was still speaking in a low, urgent tone. “… Damien must be sent a clear message.”

Oh, that was rich. She burbled a laugh. Truth was she couldn’t hold it back. The thought of sending the Crown Prince of the Guild a clear message was laughable. It was Damien who had put her in this untenable position with no explanations and certainly no apologies. Did these fools really think they could lesson Damien? The term damned if you do and damned if you don’t sprang to mind.

“Funny, Damien said the same about you.”

Gregor’s lips tightened for a tense moment. Finally, he leaned back and shrugged. “Ah, but I am here and where is Damien?” He made a show of looking about expectantly before turning back to her, his dark eyes alight with triumph. “No doubt he is sitting safe and snug in his ivory tower, yes?”

He was right, damn him. She knew that was exactly where Damien was. And double damn Damien for putting her here with no backup, no real resources and only one ally who she herself had abandoned. Glancing out the window again, she prayed DM would show up, that she hadn’t made a clean getaway, and that somehow he’d followed her. After all, if Natalya was here it wasn’t beyond the realm of possibility he’d be with her. But she could find no sign of him—or Natalya; just a young mother pushing a baby stroller, and an older couple sitting at the bus stand watching a teen sail past on a skateboard.  There would be no rescue today.

Meeting Gregor’s gaze, she thought she saw sympathy in his brown eyes but that was impossible, right? It had to be a glint of triumph. “Shall we?” he asked, nodding at the door.

Sighing, she reached for her handbag. Exhaustion kicked her hard between the eyes as she rose to her feet and left her feeling as colorless and worn as a faded pair of blue jeans. Angel trudged past tables where diners sipped their coffee and took bites out of pastries while staring like zombies at their tablets and smartphones.

She walked to the door held open by Nikita, a disapproving purse to his lips, and passed through ignoring Dimitri’s muttered threats. The gray SUV pulled across the street to a chorus of angry horns making the elderly couple look up and the young mother standing at the corner waiting for the light, turn and gawk. Gregor led the way, head down, moving with purpose toward the vehicle’s open door.

She gave her head a shake, unable to believe this was happening. Not once did she envision her death would be so boringly ridiculous.

Nikita stepped closer to her, his gun flashing in her face, and she set her jaw, determined to take this opening. She made a grab for his weapon, but felt her arm go numb from a blow to her elbow. Angel threw a kick that sent Nikita stumbling into the SUV’s open door and she slammed the door onto his legs and heard his muffled grunt.  She heard the click of a round being chambered and ducked. A melee of rounds tore across the side of the SUV and caught Nikita, his legs jerking as the bullets ripped through him.

Not sure where the attack had come from, Angel swung around to see the young mother holding an assault rifle. Maybe it was her frown or perhaps her flashing sapphire eyes, but suddenly she looked familiar.

“Move!” Natalya shouted, jerking the barrel to the left. Angel’s head twisted in that direction and she watched the elderly couple take pot shots at the Chernyy driver and associate.

She flung her head around, searching wildly for Gregor, but he was nowhere to be found. He had ducked back inside the coffee shop. There were muffled screams and shouts coming from inside. They mingled with the distant sound of sirens and became too much.

“Come on, Ahren

She moved, stumbling, her legs numb. Another burst of bullets passed so close she could have touched them had she but lifted her hand. Unconsciously, she grabbed for her sword then remembered she’d left it in DM’s room above the Stone Toad.

“Ahren! Catch!”

Suddenly her blade sailed through the air. Reaching up, she snagged it and unsnapped the leather thong, sliding the blade from its sheath and into Dimitri’s gut, opening him from groin to sternum. The big man slowly crumpled to the sidewalk like fall leaves, silent and soft, his arms thrown wide. She frowned, her gaze focusing on the strange circle tattoo on Dimitri’s wrist. It looked familiar.

Squealing tires made her look up. A glossy black tricked-out, restored Camaro pulled up beside Natalya, its big V-8 engine growling.

“Come on!” the driver shouted, a handsome man with a sun streaked mane of hair floating over his wide shoulders.

Angel stood motionless, unable to believe what she was seeing. She blinked, but nothing changed. She squinted looking at the man. Was he? Yes, he was. The driver was the lead singer from the Stone Toad. What was his name? Ethan? Yeah, that was it. Ethan… Dusk or something there abouts. The thought fled her mind when he lifted a gun and rested the barrel on the glass of the half lowered window. Pointed at her?

“Move, Ahren!” Natalya shouted.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0153NQXQS

Other Retailers: http://www.cadencedenton.com/product/wetwork-dark-man-case-files-episode-3/

 

cadence-denton

 

Author Biography:

My love of books began in elementary school with Nancy Drew mysteries. By high school, I was immersed in Jane Austin and Georgette Heyer. So, naturally I write dark (and light) paranormal romance, gritty hitmen contemporaries, and time travel. A daughter of the South, I live on the banks of the Mississippi opposite the oldest settlement on the river where I share my writer’s cave with four dachshunds and a slightly ditzy cocker spaniel.

 

Visit my website for more information on all my series and upcoming projects. You may not find everything to your liking but you won’t be bored.
You can reach me at cadencedenton@cadencedenton.com

 

Sign up for Cadence’s newsletter at cadencedenton.com for the latest news, great giveaways, and sneak peeks at new projects.

 

Social Media Links:

Sign up for my newsletter at http://cadencedenton.com

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Independent Author Network: http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/cadence-denton.html

 

 

Stillness by Eldon Farrell Will Appeal to #RobinCook Readers! #bookreview #medicalthriller #books


stillness

 

Title: Stillness

Author: Eldon Farrell

Genre: Medical Mystery / Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

Some secrets won’t stay buried…

 

When people start to succumb to a virulent strain of plague in the seemingly idyllic hamlet of Stillness, the CDC is called in to investigate. Pulled from her training with the Epidemic Intelligence Service, Dr. Lynne Bosworth is tapped to head the investigation.

 

Many questions surround the outbreak, not the least of which is how did plague find its way to the heartland of America? Determined to find the answers and her own way out of the long shadow cast by her father, Lynne embarks for Iowa. Unable to isolate an index case of bubonic plague, patient zero is traced to Nikolai Markov; an old Russian bio warfare scientist.

 

Rumors of a bioterror attack are rampant.

 

Under examination, the bacteria present Lynne with many anomalies but few answers. The antibiotic resistance noted in the field is absent in the lab, while a synthetic gene is found that seemingly has no purpose. For her superiors it’s enough to deem the outbreak a biological attack, a conclusion that Lynne does not share. For her, something about the whole incident remains…elusive.

 

In search of evidence to either prove or disprove the bioterror claim, she crosses paths with FBI Special Agent Caleb Fine. Together, they come to believe that something other than a biological attack is going on in Stillness, and that the answer to what may lie in solving the fifteen-year-old murders of Bobby and Maggie Sullivan.

 

As the body count rises and the pressure mounts, they delve deeper into the shadowy past of this quiet town; in the process exposing secrets long thought forgotten until finally uncovering the shocking truth behind the cause of the outbreak.

 

 

My Review:

The resident of Stillness, a small town in America’s Heartland, are under attack and no one is immune to this virus. The CDC is called in to investigate, led by Dr. Lynne Bosworth. While the CDC assumes it is a biological attack, Lynne thinks otherwise. Teamed up with FBI Agent Caleb Fine, she’s determined to get to the bottom of this mysterious outbreak. As the body counts rise, she knows she’s running out of time. Will she discover the culprit even if it means exposes long buried secrets and ruining her career or will she toe the CDC political line?

 

I’m a big fan of medical thrillers and Stillness kept me guessing until the very end. Filled with intriguing characters and multiple story lines, Stillness read like a HBO television series. Descriptive, well-researched medical backdrop reminded me of Robin Cook while the heart-stopping plot twists reminded me of Michael Crichton. Some of the transitions were abrupt and I got lost a few times so I had to drop it from five stars to four.  I couldn’t put it down and the subject matter is relevant in today’s scientific and political society. Well done, Farrell. I look forward to reading the next book in the series.

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’s review it.

 

Favorite Character: I found I could relate with Dr. Lynne the greatest and while she dealt with a huge amount in a short time, it was believable. Emotional angst is high but that seemed to solidify my connection with her. Strong-willed, logical and brave, she’s my kind of thriller heroine.

 

Favorite Quote: The world never really ends, no matter how dark it gets, the light of humanity never goes out. It will always chase away the darkness that is forever there inside each of us.

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Stillness-Eldon-Farrell/dp/1533404526

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30301910-stillness

 

Author Biography:

Eldon Farrell was born in Guelph, Ontario, growing up just down the road in Brantford. A designated professional accountant, he’s a graduate of both Fanshawe College and Laurentian University. He still resides in South Western Ontario together with his lovely wife Emily and their young son Connor. An avid reader and writer of suspense fiction, he is a lover of language and an unapologetic fan of DC Comics. Stillness is his first published piece of fiction.

 

Social Media Links:

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15147838.Eldon_Farrell

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/Eldon-Farrell/e/B01DTBSLNE

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Sacrificial Lam by Gary Guinn @gmguinn is a Gripping #Thriller! #entertowin #TWRP


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Title: Sacrificial Lam

 

Author: Gary Guinn

 

Genre: Mainstream Mystery/Thriller

 

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

 

 

Book Blurb:

When English professor Lam Corso receives a death threat at work, he laughs it off.  A liberal activist at a small Southern conservative college, he’s used to stirring up controversy on campus.  It’s just part of the give and take of life.  Even when violently attacked, Lam is convinced it must be a mistake.  He can’t imagine anyone who would want to kill him for his beliefs.

 

When his home is broken into and his wife’s business vandalized, Lam is forced to face the truth. His wife—a passionate anti-gun crusader—is outraged when Lam brings a gun into the house for protection. The police can’t find a single lead. Left to their own devices, Lam and Susan are forced to examine their marriage, faith, and values in the face of a carefully targeted attack from an assailant spurred into action by his own set of beliefs.

 

What will it cost to survive?

 

Excerpt:

Lying at an odd angle to the road, he opened his eyes and gasped for breath. The sky was clear, the air crisp, the grass damp. His bike lay a few feet to the right of his outstretched hand, the handlebar slightly askew.

 

When he picked himself up off the ground, his left knee was tender where it had struck the handlebar as he went over, and his shoulder hurt where the car mirror hit him. But otherwise he had no apparent injuries. He’d be sore the next day from landing and rolling, but a rush of relief rolled over him. The damn kid could have killed him driving like that. He picked up his bike and examined it. The only real damage was a dislodged rear brake cable. He was damn lucky. It could have been much worse.

 

As he straddled his front tire and struggled to straighten the handlebar, the envelope jutted from the pocket of his jacket. The hair stood on his neck, and he turned and searched the empty street in the direction the car had gone. Nothing. It was a stupid idea. It was just a dumb high school kid, who probably wet his pants when he ran Lam off the road. It had to be a high school kid. But the words of the note came to him—THE JUDGMENT IS DEATH.

 

 

Two Giveaways to Win a Signed Copy:

Rafflecopter  http://gvwy.io/46kqj5b

Goodreads Worldwide https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/225969-sacrificial-lam

 

 

Buy Links:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Sacrificial-Lam-Gary-Guinn-ebook/dp/B01MT73VUJ/

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sacrificial-Lam-Gary-Guinn/dp/1509213058/ref

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sacrificial-lam-gary-guinn/1125460487?ean=2940157292218

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ww/en/ebook/sacrificial-lam

TWRP: http://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/search?controller=search&orderby=position&orderway=desc&search_query=Sacrificial+Lam&submit_search=

 

 Gary Guinn

 

Author Biography:

Gary Guinn’s great, great grandfather moved his family to northern Arkansas from Kentucky after the Civil War. They have lived there ever since. Guinn lives in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, with his wife, Mary Ann, and their lab mix, Seamus, and their Corgi mix, Peanut. He is retired from teaching writing and literature at John Brown University. His first novel, A Late Flooding Thaw, was published by Moon Lake Publishing in 2005. His second novel, Sacrificial Lam, was published by The Wild Rose Press on March 3, 2017. His poetry and fiction have appeared in a variety of magazines, a few of which are The Midwest Poetry Review, Carve, in which his story was a finalist for the Raymond Carver Prize, The Bryant Literary Review, Ghoti, and Elder Mountain: a Journal of Ozark Studies. His short fiction has appeared in several anthologies, the most recent being Yonder Mountain, from the University of Arkansas Press. His favourite pastimes are reading, writing, traveling, and brewing beer (and of course, drinking it).

 

Social Media Links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/gmguinn

Facebook: Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/garyguinnwriter/

Facebook Personal Page: https://www.facebook.com/

Facebook Book Page: https://www.facebook.com/A-Late-Flooding-Thaw-1792618954333659/

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/585203.Gary_Guinn

 

 

My GRL by John W. Howell @HowellWave New Cover and Edition! #RRBC #thriller


My GRL front

 

Title: My GRL

Author: John W. Howell

Genre: Thriller

Publisher: Keewaydin Lane Books

 

Book Blurb:

A brand new cover and edition (new content)

 

John J. Cannon successful San Francisco lawyer takes a well-deserved leave of absence from the firm and buys a boat he names My GRL. He is unaware that his newly purchased boat had already been targeted by a terrorist group. John’s first inkling of a problem is when he wakes up in the hospital where he learns he was found unconscious next to the dead body of the young woman who sold him the boat in the first place. John now stands between the terrorists and the success of their mission.

 

Excerpt:

Gerry and I finish our beers at the Sandbar and make a move to cross the crowds toward the front door. Before the karaoke noise starts, we agree to go to another place for some pizza. She directs something to me which I can’t understand, so I hold my hand to my ear and try hard to hear her. She looks a little upset. I signal we should wait until we get outside to talk.

 

She nods and I take the lead, reach back, grab her hand, and act like a bulldozer while I separate the crowd as we pass through. It becomes harder since everyone has begun to pay attention to the drunken girl singing what sounds a little like a slurred Avril Lavigne song to the karaoke machine on the stage up front.

 

We make it to the door and go out into the humid night. I drop Gerry’s hand and notice there are two guys walking toward us. I tell her to stay close and figure the guys will eventually make way and go into the bar. I am about to ask her what she was trying to get me to understand in the bar when I feel a rush of air behind me and hear what sounds like someone thumping a watermelon. That was the last thing on my mind when the lights of the world go out.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/My-GRL-John-W-Howell-ebook/dp/B06VY4V2FC

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34470489-my-grl

 

john-howell-headshot

 

Author Biography:

John’s main interests are reading and writing. He turned to writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive career in business. John writes thriller fiction novels. His first book, My GRL published by Martin Sisters Publishing and is the first of many exciting adventures of the book’s central character John J. Cannon. The second, His Revenge published by Keewaydin Lane Books is now available in Paperback and Kindle formats. The third book in the John Cannon trilogy, Our Justice launched in September 2016 and is also published by Keewaydin Lane Books.

John lives on Mustang Island in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of south Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

 

Social Media Links:

Blog Fiction Favorites, http://johnwhowell.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/john.howell.98229241

Twitter –https://www.twitter.com/HowellWave

Authors db –http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/6604-john-w-howell

LinkedIn –http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-w-howell/48/b59/462/

Google +https://plus.google.com/+JohnHowellAuthor/

Goodreads –https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7751796.John_W_Howell

Amazon Author’s page –https://www.amazon.com/author/johnwhowell

 

A Peaceful Village Torn Apart by Murder… Written In Blood by @arcarver87 #99cents #thriller


Written in Blood

Title Written In Blood

Author Alex R Carver

Genre Mystery/Thriller

Publisher ARC Books

Book Blurb –

A peaceful village torn apart by murder.

When Oakhurst’s daughters begin to turn up, brutally murdered and with accusatory words carved into their skin, the residents of the small, close-knit community are unwilling to believe that one of their own might be a killer.

Suspicion falls on the village’s newest resident, Zack Wild, attractive, charming, author of violent crime novels, and possessor of a dark history; he seems like the perfect suspect.

As the investigation continues, the evidence against Wild mounts, but is prejudice against the newcomer affecting the judgment of Sergeant Mitchell, Constable Turner thinks so; she is determined to bring the killer to justice, no matter who it is, or what she has to do.

Who will be proved right, and will they catch the killer before he can strike again?

Excerpt

“Mitchell,” he said groggily when his groping hand found the ringing phone and brought it to his ear.

“Sorry to wake you, sergeant.”

“What’s up?” Mitchell asked, recognising the voice of Constable Pritchard. “Has something happened?” He could think of no other reason for him to be called before seven a.m. on a Saturday, as the clock on the bedside cabinet told him the time was.

“There’s been a report of a body being found.”

Mitchell instantly became wide awake, though it was a moment or two before he could speak. “Did you say a body’s?” he asked when he found his voice.

“That’s right. The call came in just a few moments ago; that new guy, Wild, said he’s found the body of a girl along the river near that old watchtower. He said she’s dead – murdered.”

“Murdered!” The word escaped his lips before Mitchell could stop it and he looked quickly over at his wife, who was still asleep. “Are you sure about that?” he asked as he slipped from the bed.

“I’ve not seen the body, so I can only go on what Mr Wild said, but he sounded pretty definite about it,” Pritchard said. “I can’t imagine why he’d lie about something like that.”

“Me neither, you can never tell with some people, though, and it’s not like we know Mr Wild well enough to tell what he might do.”

“Do you think it could be Georgina Ryder?” Pritchard asked.

Mitchell went cold at that. The notion that the girl he and his officers had spent the week looking for was dead was not one he liked – the possibility that she had been murdered was worse – but he couldn’t think who else the body could be, the village had only the one missing girl as far as he was aware. “Unless you know of any other Oakhurst girls that have gone missing, I think it has to be Georgina,” he said, feeling no satisfaction at the thought of her having been found.

Pritchard hesitated for a moment and then said, “I wasn’t going to mention it ‘til you came in, I didn’t think it was important, I mean, she’s never home…”

“Are you going to get to the point?” Mitchell asked, pressing the phone to his ear with his shoulder while he struggled into his uniform.

“Mike left a note, Theresa Goulding came in last night to report Lucy missing.”

“Damn,” Mitchell swore, abandoning his efforts at getting dressed. It amazed him how quickly a situation could go from bad to worse. “Okay, here’s what I want you to do; call Doc Kelly and Mel, tell them both I’ll be by shortly to pick them up, then call the inspector. Chances are, Wild’s wrong about the girl being dead, but just in case, the inspector is going to want to know what’s going on.”

“Wouldn’t it be better to call Mike or Adrian?” Pritchard asked. “Mel’s never dealt with a dead body before, perhaps now’s probably not the best time for her first.”

“No, I want Mel, she’s got to deal with this kind of thing sooner or later. Besides, if I have to go and see the Ryders afterwards, Melissa will be more help than either Mike or Adrian. You’d better make those calls, Paul, I’ll be at Doc Kelly’s in a few minutes, tell him he’ll need his bag.”

*****

Melissa Turner looked down the bank at the rapidly moving river, and then over at her superior. It made her shudder just to think about what he wanted her to do.

“Wouldn’t we be better off going back and crossing at the bridge?” she asked. “That water looks bloody freezing. I don’t fancy going in there, and I’m sure it’s not a good idea for Doc Kelly.”

“Don’t you worry about me,” Kelly said as he settled to the ground and began rolling up his trouser legs. “I’ve never been bothered by a bit of cold water. It’s that far bank I’m concerned about, it looks a little steep for my liking.”

Mitchell looked across the river at the far bank and then at the doctor, before finally down at himself. He wasn’t as large at the waist as the doctor, but he was still far from slim; climbing the far bank was likely to be as much of a challenge for him as for the doctor, but there was nowhere better.

“It’ll be a struggle,” he admitted. “But we’ll manage. If we go back, it’ll cost us three quarters of an hour, maybe more, and there’s a deadfall on that side, near the bridge, that’s been threatening to drop for a year. I’d rather not be under it, if it finally decides to go.”

Melissa thought that a bit of a weak argument – if the tree hadn’t fallen in a year, it was unlikely to fall while they passed it. She suspected Mitchell had not even thought about crossing the river after parking at the pub, and was reluctant to correct his mistake.

“I’ll go first,” Mitchell said. “Doc, you come second, Mel, you bring up the rear. Once I’ve got to the top I can pull you up, Doc, while Mel gives you a shove from behind.”

The river at the chosen spot was only about fifteen feet wide, but it still took the three of them almost five minutes to make it to the top of the far bank. Most of that time was spent climbing the bank on the other side, which Melissa had no difficulty with, but which proved a struggle for her companions.

Pre-Order Today for only 99 cents http://viewbook.at/WrittenInBlood

AlexCarver

Author Biography

Alex Carver has worked a number of jobs over the years, none of which provided the satisfaction he got from writing, and he has now given up the day jobs to write full-time. Primarily he writes crime fiction, reflecting his interest in the seedy underbelly of life, but science fiction and kids adventure have featured in his writing, with books in those genres on the long list of titles he is preparing for release.

Social Media Links

Website/Blog https://arcbookblog.wordpress.com/

Twitter https://twitter.com/arcarver87

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15944488.Alex_R_Carver

Ares Road by James L. Weaver @jlweaverbooks #books #thriller #giveaway


Ares Road
James L. Weaver
(Jake Caldwell, #2)
Published by: Lakewater Press
Publication date: March 2nd 2017
Genres: Adult, Thriller

With his days as a mob enforcer behind him, Jake Caldwell’s trying to go straight.

 

But it seems his past won’t let him go.

 

His first job working as a private investigator turns up a teenage girl screaming down a dead man’s cell phone, and Logan, his mentor and the only man with answers, beaten into a coma.

 

Now Jake’s taking it personally.

 

The only clues Jake has to unravel the mystery are a Russian with a stolen, silver briefcase and three names: Snell, Parley and Ares. Teaming up with his best friend Bear, the Sheriff of his home town, and an attractive FBI agent, Jake quickly discovers they’re not the only ones looking for the briefcase and its deadly contents.

 

It’s no longer about seeking revenge.

 

The thrilling second book in the Jake Caldwell series is a heart-stopping ride that won’t disappoint fans.

 

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble

EXCERPT:

“How do you know, Mr. Logan?” a uniformed cop named Murphy asked Jake while a couple of young paramedics tended to Logan. Murphy had a low forehead and wide-set eyes, and spoke like he’d been dropped on his head multiple times as a child.

“We work together.”

“You a PI, too?”

“Sort of. I was learning the ropes from Jack. Don’t have a license yet.”

Murphy jotted in a notebook. Paramedics wheeled Logan out of the office on a stretcher, and Jake wondered how they would get him down those three flights of narrow stairs. A rail-thin, black detective with a shaved head and a cheap, tan suit slipped into the room. His polar opposite partner squeezed through the door, red faced with beads of sweat rolling down his jowls from the three-flight climb. The fat one was as tall as he was wide and waddled into Logan’s office. The bald one talked to Murphy, took some notes, and turned to Jake.

“I’m Detective Ogio. You know Jack Logan long, Mr. Caldwell?”

“Three years,” Jake answered. “We were supposed to meet tonight.”

“To do what?”

The detective waited with raised eyebrows for an answer. Ogio’s acorn eyes were hooded, giving him a sleepy look, but there was light there. The guy wasn’t stupid. He was suspicious of Jake, which pissed him off because he’d given them no reason to be suspicious. Plus, Jake couldn’t tell the cop the truth because it would start a whole line of questions he didn’t want to answer. He had to stonewall them.

“We were going out to dinner,” Jake lied.

“Where?”

“Does it matter?”

“It does if I’m asking the question.”

“I didn’t do this,” Jake said.

“I didn’t say you did. You’re a big guy, though. Six two and what…two hundred twenty pounds?”

“Six three, two thirty. Like that matters. Why would I beat the shit out of him and then call you guys?”

“Like I said, I didn’t say you did. Why are you getting defensive?”

“You think I’m being defensive?” Jake asked.

Ogio’s head ticked to the side. “A little.”

“I’m worried, that’s all. My buddy just got his ass kicked.”

“What were you guys working on?”

Jake shifted, tired of answering these banal questions.

“We were between jobs.”

“Must make it tough to learn the ropes.”

“What ropes?”

Ogio’s thin lips pressed together. “The ones Officer Murphy said you were learning from Mr. Logan.”

“A bit. We done here? I want to go to the hospital.”

“Why do you think Mr. Logan’s office was trashed?”

“Somebody was looking for something.” Jake hoped the detective caught his sarcasm. He laid it on pretty thick.

“You think? Maybe you should be a detective.”

“Maybe you should too.”

Ogio grinned. He clearly had a good nature. “He say anything to you about anyone being after him?”

“He said he did a lot of divorce cases. Maybe someone looked for photos of their cheating wife.”

“Always possible,” the detective said. He handed Jake his card—Thomas Ogio.

“Where are they taking Logan?”

“Truman Medical Center,” Ogio answered, flipping his notebook shut. “You got my number. Call me if you think of anything else. Stay reachable.”

Ogio headed toward Logan’s office to join his partner. Jake strode out the door, down the steps, and out into the early March evening. He stood on the sidewalk wondering what to do. Did Logan meet with his contact that would lead them to Voleski? Did the contact do this to him? Was this about another case? Somebody wanted something up there and it wasn’t divorce photos. What did Logan say? The less you know on this one, the better.

Jake rubbed his hand over the day’s growth on his face. The one person who could answer his questions and give him a direction to go was Logan. Jake jumped in his truck and headed toward Truman Medical Center.

 

Author Bio:

James L Weaver is the Kansas City author of the Jake Caldwell series featuring IAN Thriller of the Year finalist Poor Boy Road and soon to be released Ares Road from Lakewater Press. He makes his home in Olathe, Kansas with his wife of 19 years and two children. His previous publishing credits include a six part story called “The Nuts” and his 5-star rated debut novel Jack & Diane which is available on Amazon.com. Author note: a handful of the raters are actually not related to him.

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

 

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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From a Poison Pen – Volume II by @BPSmythe #bookreview #horror #macabre


from-a-poison-pen-volume-ii

 

Title: From a Poison Pen – Volume ii

Author: B. P. Smythe

Genre: Thriller, Macabre, Horror, Short Stories

 

Book Blurb:

From the extraordinary mind of B.P. Smythe comes a compilation of short stories.

 

This collection of dark, humours and macabre tales explores the disturbing side of human nature.

 

From a Poison Pen II is the second book of collected short stories in the trilogy.

 

My Review:

Not as strong as the first book but there are some extraordinarily good stories in this volume. Be warned: there is one story with graphic sexual descriptions and one story with language that could be offensive (18+). This author is brilliant at short stories.  When he extends the stories to lengthy pieces, he tends to lose his way. It will be highlighted in the individual story reviews.  A decent read with good macabre writing throughout.  Not to read when eating * although I read most of it while eating lol *.

 

Story 1 – Short, sweet, brilliant 5/5 – the retelling of a horror classic done with panache.

 

Story 2 – Too long and disjointed and meandering. 1/5 – If the story was going to be this long, then for me, I needed to see the terrorist slowly and painfully cut to bits.  That would have raised this up two points alone.

 

Story 3 – A strong effort 4/5 – Good pacing, pure evil then pure vengeance. Well done if a tad long.

 

Story 4 – Confusing 1/5 – Unsatisfying story, never knew who was what and they never flew B-52s in WW2.

 

Story 5 – 1/5 * DISCLAIMER * The frequent use of the N-word may be disturbing and offensive to many readers (it was to me). More of a novella again.   This was way too long, too complicated, too many offensive scenes using the N-word and hard to understand.

 

Story 6 – Excellent! 5/5 With a fantastic finish and amazing surprise ending.  A brilliant work and the BEST in this book.

 

Story 7 – Brilliant ghost story 4/5 – Well written and engrossing.  Warning:  There is a graphic sex scene in this story so 18+ is recommended.  The two friends are great characters and the hauntings are spectacular.  This would have been 5 out of 5 but for the ending.  It wasn’t clear and not satisfying and frankly, I didn’t get it.

 

Story 8 – Short and blasé 3/5 – The main character is quickly shown to the reader as a total AHE.  (the author has the gift of doing that very well and to quickly convey a strong negative feeling for a character is a gift).  The story just meandered and was a very unsettling and unsatisfying ending.

 

My Rating:  3 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Poison-Pen-ii-B-P-Smythe-ebook/dp/B01LFM1032/

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-ii-B-P-Smythe-ebook/dp/B01LFM1032

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31861604-from-a-poison-pen—volume-ii

 

B. P. Smythe

 

Author Biography:

I studied engineering at Carshalton College and eventually became a member of the Institute of Quality Assurance.

My engineering career took on many roles including toolmaking and being a technical writer for an artificial limb manufacturer. However, I’ve always enjoyed putting pen to paper while raising quality manuals and writing reports. I also write tennis articles for my local county magazine and relax reading crime and horror fiction. This, coupled with my technical writing career, partly influenced my transition into creative writing.

 

Wanting to expand my writing knowledge, I obtained a Level 3 / NCFE Certificate / PI410 creative writing diploma.

 

Sow And You Shall Reap – http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/145677171X is my first self- published novel. However, I have submitted numerous short stories for internet competitions including, winning £100 as first prize for my A Rose Without a Thorn for the http://www.spinetinglerspublishing online magazine and winning £50 first prize for my We’ll Meet Again in the http://dark-places.co.uk online magazine.

 

Two of my other short stories, Love Me Do and My Secret Place, have also been published in the printed Litro Magazine – Issue 140 – ISBN 978-0-9554245-5-7 http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/02/litro-140-diaries/

 

Near the end of 2015 I fortunately obtained a three book deal contract with Bloodhound Books http://www.bloodhoundbooks.com to publish a trilogy of macabre/thriller collected short stories. My first book titled – ‘From a Poison Pen’ is the first book of the trilogy and highlights from the stories – What happens when a member of the Hitler youth ends up in a concentration camp? How does a beach side cocktail get in the way the way of one woman’s scheming? What leads a teenage girl to reign down fire and brimstone? When a doctor buries his mistake, can he get away with it?

 

This collection of dark, humorous and macabre tales explores the disturbing side of human nature.

 

To purchase ‘From a Poison Pen’ Go to amazon.co.uk for the Kindle and paperback editions…

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE

 

Favourite books:

The Shining by Stephen King

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

Psycho by Robert Bloch

 

Other links to B.P.Smythe for his books – go to:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE

http://www.amazon.com/Sow-Shall-Reap-B-P-Smythe/dp/145677171X

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12044547-sow-and-you-shall-reap

http://authorsonshow.com/2011/09/18/contest-entries/

http://www.authorsden.com/barrysmythe

 

Sow and You Shall Reap

by B P Smythe. available COPIES on Amazon Kindle and paperback. Isbn:9781456771713

 

Contact info:

B.P.Smythe

40 Saint Margaret’s Avenue,

North Cheam, Surrey.

SM3 9TT

 

e.mail: barrysmythe@hotmail.com

 

Social Media Links:

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5043570.B_P_Smythe

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/BPSmythe

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

Meet Award-Winning Author @ChristineBened5 + Her #Thriller! #IARTG #IAN1 #books


Christine Benedict

It’s out great pleasure to welcome Award-Winning Author Christine Benedict to the POTL Blog. We first met Christine when she contacted us about a book review. MRS N is a huge thriller fan so she read Anonymous. She loved it so much that MR N had to read it also. We begged and pleaded with Christine to sit down with us for an author interview and after many months, she agreed. Please give Christine Benedict a warm welcome to the POTL Blog. Take it away, Christine:

 

Do you write naked?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood naked, dripping wet from a shower, writing as fast as my pen will go. What is it about taking a shower that gives the creative mind a nudge. It’s not a widely-known fact but our best ideas come in the shower. Google it. You’ll be amazed.

Do you have any scars? What are they from?

I have this scar on my forearm an inch and a half long in the shape of lips. I don’t remember how old I was, maybe four or five, when we lived with Grandma Wilson who watched us while my mother worked. I don’t know why it such a big deal to get the mail either, but when I saw the mailman that day pull off Route 82, I yelled, “I’ll get the mail!”  Me in my summer clothes, flip-flops and all, I opened the wooden front door.

My older sister, who would never let me ‘one-up’ her, yelled back, “No I will!” She dodged past me and flung the screen door open. My feet in motion, my arm outstretched, she slammed the storm door shut. I wonder to this day how she couldn’t have done it on purpose. My hand and arm broke all that glass, the only parts of me to make it outside.  I stood there bleeding, Grandma’s English bulldog, Beauty, licking up the blood and the glass on the floor. Grandma kept hitting that dog with a broom, yelling, “Git!” all the while, afraid it would cut its mouth.

Just as your books inspire authors, what authors have inspired you?

I think Eudora Welty could inspire any writer as she certainly has for me. It’s little wonder why universities everywhere bring attention to Eudora and her stories. ‘Death of a Traveling Salesman,’ for example, still gives me goosebumps, something I aspire to give my readers.

There are so many other authors who inspire me, Jodi  Picoult, author of The Storyteller, for her depiction of the human condition during the holocaust.  Amy Tan, author of The Valley of Amazement, for her expression of detail, taking you to China at the rise of World War II. And most importantly Sarah Willis, author of Things That Stay; I was fortunate enough to take part in her writing workshops sponsored by Community Partnership for Arts and Culture – Talk about inspiration.

What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?

I’d like to tell aspiring authors to read read read. Spread out to other genres, not just the one you write. Delve into cultures around the world through their stories. Open your mind to the new and abstract.

There’s so much more you can learn about the crafting a story, no matter what your education level.  Seek out writing workshops in your area sponsored by universities and art counsels. Dr. Neal Chandler lead the fiction workshop at Cleveland State University where I had the privilege of learning above the grade.  I even had the chance to sit in on a few sessions with Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife, at a workshop sponsored by The Ohio Arts Counsel. A one of a kind experience.

 

What were you like as a child? Your favorite toy?

It’s been said that I’ve always had a bubbly personality, even as a kid in the 1950s. I don’t know how that could have happened seeing that I lived in an abusive home. Except by the grace of God. I was friendly to everyone, the kind of kid who would gladly sit in a stranger’s lap just because he was nice to me.

I don’t remember a favorite toy, but I do remember when we moved to the country we had a huge trailer that sat empty in a grove of willow trees. The trailer had two wheels in the center and was closed at both ends, the perfect seesaw for 4 little kids.  Together, I, my sister and the two neighbor boys climbed inside the trailer and ran to one end, the metal clanging under our bare feet. It came down so hard the jolt made us jump involuntarily which made up laugh hysterically. We did it over and over again, until someone bit their tongue.

1875-farmhouse
This is the farmhouse that inspired my story. I lived there 36 years and the neighbors still say it’s haunted. – Christine Benedict

Title: Anonymous

Author: Christine Benedict

Genre: Thriller Suspense

Publisher: Loconeal Publishing

Book Blurb:

Debra Hamilton faces the fear of inheriting her mother’s insanity when her husband insists on moving into a fixer-upper farmhouse that’s a hundred years old, not an easy place for Debra to live, what with its creaks and bangs, and strange shadows, a house that even scares the neighbors. Debra befriends Julie, and learns that Julie has a stalker who writes her anonymous letters about the sexual fantasies he sees with her.

The story was inspired by the author’s own 100-year-old farmhouse where the neighbor still say it’s haunted. All the letters in the novel are letters from the man who stalked the author. He remains anonymous to this day.

 

Excerpt:

Having to pee, Debra unzipped her jeans in the bathroom before remembering that Greg had turned off the water.

“Geez-oh-Pete.” At this point the gas station was too far. She traipsed down the corridor that led to the basement. A quick flip-of-the-switch was all she wanted, just enough water to flush. The stairwell was dark and steep; the light-bulb’s pull-chain at the bottom. She clicked on the flashlight from Greg’s toolbox, and holding her pants up, cautiously stepped down the narrow stairs. Every inch she eked past spider webs meshed in between the cracks of hand-hewn quarry-stone walls. She stopped at the bottom step where she could finally reach the light, not wanting to take the last step onto the broken cement, muddied from the last rain. It smelled like the bottom of a creek bed, like earthworms and sludge. Spider webs were draped from the ceiling to the walls, and hung like shelves in every corner. The quarry-stone walls dating back to the 1800s were pitted blocks of sandstone—every bit her idea of a dungeon. From where she stood, Debra scanned the walls, trying to see the water valve. But she didn’t know where to look. A wolf spider the size of a quarter sat very still at the bottom step, then scurried across the floor. She shuddered right down to the bone. Another spider sat like a brooch on a jacket that Greg had hung on a hook. And in that moment before the light flickered off when all she could hear was her own heart, she swore that something was crawling up her leg. She let out a piercing yell, kicking wildly. She kicked off her shoes. She kicked off her jeans and dashed up the stairs in her panties, wanting to nail the door shut right then and there. At the top of the steps she eyed a yard stick that she’d used to stir paint, and picked it up. Then she made a mad dash to the basement and flogged her jeans to death right there in the sludge. Holding them at arm’s length, she brought them upstairs and looked them over. She begrudgingly pulled them on, and ran outside to the back field.

The sun shining off the white of her derrière, she squatted behind a briar bush where no one could see.

At least that’s what she thought.

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Christine-Benedict/dp/194046613X

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/anonymous-christine-benedict/1118033610?ean=9781940466132

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/405526

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20263470-anonymous

 

Author Biography:

Christine studied creative writing at Baldwin Wallace University and Cleveland State University. She has had the privilege of working with authors Karen Joy Fowler, Paula McLain, and Sarah Willis.

Her debut novel Anonymous had earned:

  • 2015 Clue Award (Chanticleer Reviews) Winner (1st place)
  • 2016 Wishing Shelves Bronze Book Award Winner
  • 2015 Eric Hoffer Book Award Winner
  • 2015 First Horizon Book Award Nominee
  • 2015 IAN book of The Year Nominee
  • 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Award Nominee

Her short story A Normal Life, a finalist for Perigee Publication for the Arts, is the fictional rendering of the visit to the mental ward where her mother had been undergoing shock treatment therapy in the 1980s, which is also a chapter in Anonymous.

Christine’s short stories, taken from her working novel The Girl in the Willows, have also been finalists for The Fish Short Story Prize.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.authorchristinebenedict.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AuthorChristineBenedict/

Twitter https://twitter.com/christinebened5

Where There’s A Will: Inspector Stone Book One by @ARCarver87 #mystery #99cents


2016-852-ebook-alex-r-carvel-a-will

 

Title Where There’s A Will

Author Alex R Carver

Genre Mystery

Publisher ARC Books

 

Book Blurb

An armed robbery, a kidnapping, and an enemy that’s closer than anyone realises.

A rich family, a big house, and everything her heart desires, Alice Keating has a life that many want, and now someone has decided to take it.
Inspector Stone has to put aside problems at home and an ambitious underling when Alice is kidnapped, and a multi-million Euro ransom demanded for her return.
Can he find her and return her safely to her parents when the man behind Alice’s kidnapping it closer to home than anyone suspects, and he’s not above murder to stay out of jail and get what he wants.

 

Excerpt –

Side by side, as though joined at the hip, Ben and Jerry stepped through the flaps and into the pavilion. They blinked in unison as they went from the darkness of outside to the brightness of the pavilion’s interior, which was lit by portable lights that hung overhead.

 

They knew what to do without talking – they had been working together for so long that they would have been as close as brothers even without the bond of blood – and while Ben made for the young man busily gathering up the plastic glasses that littered the tables, Jerry threaded his way through the tables to the bar.

 

“On your knees.” Ben’s voice was no louder than a whisper, but he didn’t need volume to make it clear that his order should be obeyed, the sawn-off shotgun in his hand did that for him. He was pleased, but unsurprised, to see the young man drop the cups he had gathered and almost hit his head on the table he was cleaning in his haste to do as he had been told.

 

“What d’you want?” The cleaner’s voice trembled with fear as he addressed his question, not to the man standing over him but to the gun being pointed at him – he couldn’t force his eyes any higher than the twin dark holes that stared at him from the end of the barrel.

 

“The money,” Ben admitted candidly before slamming the butt of his gun down on the man’s head. He bent briefly to check that the cleaner was out cold and then stepped over the immobile form so he could join Jerry, who was waiting for him by the partition that led into the rear section of the pavilion.

 

Like his brother, Jerry was holding a sawn-off shotgun, which he clutched tightly while his finger twitched on the trigger, ready to squeeze it at the slightest provocation. “Three,” he told Ben quietly, having risked a look through the partition to see how many people they had to worry about. His eyes shone greedily at the thought of the money he had seen, and his body quivered like a coiled spring; it could not have been more obvious how excited he was, or how desperate he was to get on with things.

 

“Let’s do this,” Ben whispered. He stepped past his brother and through the partition. “On the ground, all of you,” he ordered loudly, swinging his shotgun from side to side so that the muzzle was pointed in turn at the two men and one woman; all three of them froze in the act of counting the piles of money – made by the beer tents that had been quenching the thirst of the revellers at the Rock Radio Music Festival – on the table when they saw the guns, and the balaclava-wearing men wielding them.

 

“Do as he says,” Jerry snarled, standing shoulder to shoulder with his brother. “On the ground, hands behind yer backs.” The moment the three of them had done as they were told Jerry lowered his shotgun and slid the bag he was carrying from his shoulder. He took several lengths of rope and strips of cloth from the bag, which he used to bind their hands and blindfolded them; finally, just to be sure they weren’t going to cause any trouble, he knocked them out, using the butt of his shotgun as a club. “Let’s get this done,” he said eagerly once he was finished.

 

As quickly as they could, the pair grabbed up the bundles of cash that covered the table like the cloth of a cartoon rich person and stuffed them into the bag. It took longer than they had anticipated to empty the table, and there was only just enough space in the bag for all of it – there was more money than they had expected, though neither of them thought that a bad thing, there could never be such a thing as too much money as far as they were concerned. By the time they were finished, the bag was full to bursting, leaving them both to wonder how much it was they had stolen, and how much fun they could have with it – a lot, that was certain.

 

A little over five minutes after entering the temporary drinking hall, Ben and Jerry left it, with Jerry practically skipping on his way through the pavilion, so excited was he. If they were not now rich men, they were certainly far better off than before, and they were both feeling full of themselves; they couldn’t think of another way they could make so much money so quickly or so easily.

 

“Didn’ I tell you it’d be easy?” Jerry exulted, pulling off his balaclava to reveal shaggy brown hair that was in need of a good brush, and several days’ worth of stubble. “We’re loaded, fuckin’ loaded.” He let out a short, sharp whoop of glee, heedless of the fact that there were still people around, clearing up after the festival. “How much you think we got?”

 

“More’n you said we’d get,” Ben said as he slid into the passenger seat of the car they had parked as close to the pavilion as they could. While he did that, his partner tossed the bag into the back seat before taking the driver’s seat. “Forty grand, at least, mebbe more. We’ll find out when we get ‘ome.”

 

Jerry gunned the engine and raced away from the pavilion, narrowly missing one of the festival staff who was nearby. He paid no attention to the man, who was forced to dive out of the way of the racing car to avoid being hit, as he sped across the field towards the makeshift exit from the festival grounds.

 

Buy Links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Where-Theres-Will-Inspector-Stone-ebook/dp/B01M7VJ1MY

 

molly

 

Author Biography

Alex Carver has worked a number of jobs over the years, none of which provided the satisfaction he got from writing, and he has now given up the day jobs to write full-time. Primarily he writes crime fiction, reflecting his interest in the seedy underbelly of life, but science fiction and kids adventure have featured in his writing, with books in those genres on the long list of titles he is preparing for release.

Book 1 of the Inspector Stone series is already out, and book 2 is due in September 2017, with a serial killer thriller being released in March/April.

 

Social Media Links

Twitter https://twitter.com/arcarver87

Publisher https://arcbookblog.wordpress.com/

 

 

Initiated to Kill by @SharleneAlmond #thriller #historical #Giveaway


 initiatedtokill-front

 

Title: Initiated to Kill

 

 

Author: Sharlene Almond

 

 

Genre: Historical/21st century psychological thriller

 

 

Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press and Start Publishing

 

 

Book Blurb:

Two men from two different generations, both initiated into a powerful organization that throughout history has sought control and uses their power for destruction. They leave behind a wake of murder, manipulation and ancient secrets. The first man wreaks havoc in and around the Whitechapel district of London, England in the 19th century. While the other stalks his victims in the cosmopolitan city of Seville, Spain in the 21st century; knowing that only he could uncover the true motives of one of the world’s most infamous serial killers—Jack the Ripper.

 

Excerpt:

Prologue

January, 1888

The solemn lodge hid from unworthy eyes, an unnoticeable forgotten place made of granite. Two Sphinx- like granite lions with women’s heads peered down from the entrance of the lodge. An “ankh” adorned the lion’s neck, entwined with a cobra. An image of a woman embellished the neck and breast of the other lion, speaking of fertility and procreation.

Fervent men slowly make their way up the three levels of narrowing steps, passing under the two Egyptian swords with curved serpentine blades, passing through the two tall bronze doors.

One man glanced up as he ascended the steps, silently mouthing, “the temple of the Supreme Council Freemasons,” made of brass letters and set in stone. His gaze fell to the plaque cut in stone, “Freemasonry Builds Its Temples in the Hearts of Men and Among Nations.”

Stone columns extend high above the entrance and partially conceal an image of an Egyptian god, backed with radiating sun and flanked by six large golden snakes. He stepped past the threshold of the lodge entirely made of marble, exotic wood, and statues carved from gold.

The ofting room decorated with many symbols, especially the serpent, and portraits of famous and influential men, lined the walls. Illuminations flickered above the men, resembling stars in the dark blue sky; the golden serpents silently watching in the blue heavens.

Slowly removing his clothes, wrapping the long black

robe around him, placing a hood over his head to partially conceal his face.

In the recesses of the ancient temple, an ornately decorated room filled with candles, lighted the way for the men filing in. Dressed in long black robes, hands pressed solemnly together, slowly the row of men trudge into the Temple room. Each with their face down, they instinctively form a large circle in the room.

The room fell with a deathly silence; abruptly three knocks reverberated throughout the room. The Worshipful Master spoke, “You will admit him in the name of the Grand Architect of the Universe, and let him be placed in the West.”

Gradually the door creaks open, a young man enters with a black robe and the left knee and breast exposed. The young man’s face is covered by a dark cloth and led around the circle by a rope around his neck. The candidate is led to the oath of secrecy where the Worshipful Master stands. A sword is pricked to the candidate’s left breast.

“As this is a prick to the flesh at this time, so may the remembrance of it be to your conscience hereafter, should you ever attempt improperly to reveal any of the secrets with which you are about to be entrusted.”

The group silently watch as the candidate is instructed to kneel with his left knee bare and bent, his right foot forming a square and the body being erect in that square. The left hand supports the Volume of the Sacred Law, compass and square and right hand placed thereon.

“‘Vouch safe Thine Aid, Almighty Father, Grand Architect of the Universe, to this our present conviction. Grant that this Candidate for Masonry, now kneeling before thee, may dedicate and devote his life to thy Service, and become a true and faithful Brother amongst us. To this end endue him with such a competency of thy Divine Wisdom, that assisted by the secrets of our Royal Masonic Art, he may be better enabled to display the beauties of true godliness to the Honour and glory of Thy Most Holy Name.’ ”

“‘I do most solemnly and sincerely promise and swear to have my throat cut across, my tongue torn out by the roots, and my body buried in the rough sands of the sea at low water mark, where the tide ebbs and flows in twenty- four hours…should I ever knowingly or willingly violate this my solemn oath or obligation as an Entered Apprentice Mason. So help me God.’ ”

The young man is then presented with white gloves and escorted to the pedestal in the East to become an Entered Apprentice.

Throughout the ceremony another waited expectedly. Another man would join them, and this man would be the one. He had done a lot to encourage them to allow this man to be initiated.

But he could never have foretold the events to come.

 

i-heard-myself-speak-with-confidence-and

A candlelit chamber houses a secret meeting where four men sit around a table, each wearing the long black robes and only talking above a whisper.

“The time has come to make our stand and proclaim to our Brothers that it’s time. It’s our time to cause such a panic, that people will not know whom to turn to. That the reliance on religion and government will pass. It’s our time to take control, and whoever does not stand behind us will

fall.”“Yes, we must give a sign to our Brothers that can only be recognized by them, something that will forever change the world.”

 

Giveaway:

Sharlene Almond is giving away a free e-book to five lucky commenters. Answer this question in the comments below:

What’s your favorite thriller/suspense book and why?

Open Internationally and runs through January 25, 2017.

 

 

Buy Links:

https://www.amazon.com/Initiated-Kill-Sharlene-Almond-ebook/dp/B01E9DDKO6/

 

sharlene-almod

 

Author Biography:

I’m an author and student living in Auckland, New Zealand. I’ve studied in a wide range of subjects; however, chose to concentrate on courses designed to learn more about the human psyche.

 

Having studied in Criminology and Neuro Linguistic programming; in addition to completing a diploma course in body language, enables me to give an authentic feel to my characters, and the crimes committed. Because I’ve always been fascinated with human psychology, especially criminal psychology, I always include that element in every book I write.

 

I’m also a student studying Naturopathy Nutrition, and Body Language. Although I love writing, I am hoping to eventually start up my own business as a Complementary Health Therapist from home.

 

I have recently published a New Zealand travel E-book – Journey in Little Paradise, to inform travellers of what to expect when they come to New Zealand. And if you are interested in reviewing this as well, or instead, I can provide an E-book of your choice.

 

As an author of historical/21st century psychological, international thrillers, my books challenge readers to think beyond what they believe, as well as taking the reader on a journey throughout Europe and abroad.

 

Social Media Links:

If you are interested in any of the topics I am qualified in, as well as writing tips from myself and other writers, I will be starting up a monthly newsletter, including a Q&A for subscribers to write into me. Link to sign-up to my newsletter: http://eepurl.com/cqQ26v

Email: sharlenealmond@gmail.com

Blog: https://sharlenefreelancewriter.wordpress.com/

About.me: https://about.me/sharlene.almond

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/Sharlene-Almond/e/B00K3ZK2ZA/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SharleneAlmond

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sharlenealmond.co.nz?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/sharlenealmond/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6626652.Sharlene_Almond

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sharlene-almond-35123077

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/3/+SharleneAlmondauthor

The Beast Within by @JacqBiggar Scared Mrs. N to Death! #bookreview #TuesdayBookBlog #mgtab


the-beast-within

 

Title: The Beast Within (Book 2 Mended Souls)

Author: Jacquie Biggar

Genre: Mystery/Suspense Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

She didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

 

Can two displaced angels save a woman from the clutches of a vicious psychopath?

 

When Julie Crenshaw is offered a news reporter’s job on beautiful Vancouver Island she didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

 

Connor O’Rourke has seen his share of human depravities during his fourteen years as a homicide detective, but is still sickened by the murderer terrorizing his island shores.

 

And threatening his key witness.

 

As the stakes rise, can two people get a second chance at love?

 

Or will a killer be the winner?

 

My Review:

The Beast Within is book two in the Mended Souls series and while I loved The Guardian (book one) for its paranormal romance elements, this one scared the crap out of me! Trust me, that’s a good thing. It’s a psychological thriller with paranormal elements that continues the story of newly-minted angels Mike and Lucas.

 

Julie, Mike’s widow, is trying to move past the loss of her husband when she discovers a foot on the beach. The reporter in her says it’s a serial killer but the last thing she needs is more publicity. But Detective Connor, annoyingly handsome and astute, won’t let her leave the crime scene until she gives her name. She does and he recognizes her immediately.

 

There’s a serial killer on the loose and he’s one sick man. The more Julie investigates it, the closer she get to the truth and the more attention she gets from the killer. Will Connor catch the killer before it’s too late or will the killer be victorious?

 

Biggar takes a story ripped from current British Columbia headlines and creates one of the scariest thrillers I’ve ever read. She delves into the mind of a serial killer and it’s spot-on. The twisted nature of his view on human life (especially Native women) brought the killer’s point of view front and center for the reader’s enjoyment.

 

But this is so much more than a psychological thriller. While Julie and Connor are hunting the serial killer, Angels Lucas and Mike have their own cat and mouse game playing out. Mike has taken the one thing that matters to Lucas captive (backstory in book one). Mike’s determined to make Lucas pay. Mike discovers his wife has feelings for Connor which only makes things worse. It’s not until Julie’s life is in danger, that these two angels must work together. A beautiful story of rage, redemption and forgiveness.

 

Biggar is one of my favorite romantic suspense authors. She ups her game in The Beast Within and it’s a must-read, in my view. Filled with complex storylines, intense emotional scenes, paranormal conflict and an unstoppable killer, The Beast Within would please any suspense/thriller reader. Biggar’s writing just gets better and better. Don’t delay, 1-click today.

 

I received an ARC from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

http://books2read.com/u/bpGqpl

 

Jacquie Biggar

 

Author Biography:

JACQUIE BIGGAR  is a USA Today bestselling author of Romantic Suspense who loves to write about tough, alpha males who know what they want, that is until they’re gob-smacked by heroines who are strong, contemporary women willing to show them what they really need is love. She is the author of the popular Wounded Hearts series and has just started a new series in paranormal suspense, Mended Souls.

 

She has been blessed with a long, happy marriage and enjoys writing romance novels that end with happily-ever-afters.

 

Jacquie lives in paradise along the west coast of Canada with her family and loves reading, writing, and flower gardening. She swears she can’t function without coffee, preferably at the beach with her sweetheart. 🙂

 

Free reads, excerpts, author news, and contests can be found on her web site:

http://jacqbiggar.com

 

You can follow her on at http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar , http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

 

Or email her via her web site. Jacquie lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and loves to hear from readers all over the world!

 

You can also join her street team on Facebook: Biggar’s Book Buddies

 

Or her exclusive Review Crew: https://jacqbiggar.com/join-my-review-crew/

 

And sign up for her newsletter-

http://eepurl.com/2MFvX

 

Social Media Links:

http://jacqbiggar.com

http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar

http://Facebook.com/jacquiebiggar

Facebook Street Team:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1051448161572521/

http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

http://amazon.com/author/jacquiebiggar

https://www.goodreads.com/JacquieBiggar

http://Pinterest.com/jacqbiggar

https://plus.google.com/+JacquieBiggar

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/jacquie-biggar

http://Instagram.com/jacqbiggar

 

Newsletter- http://eepurl.com/2MFvX

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

A Midnight Clear by @JeannieHallAuth Sizzles With #Suspense + #Romance! #bookreview


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Title: A Midnight Clear: A Christmas Novella

Author: Jeannie Hall

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Holiday Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Hannah Barker went from looking forward to her first white Christmas in years to sitting handcuffed and terrified in an FBI interrogation room. They believe her to be a heroin mule for one of the largest and most notoriously successful international drug syndicates of the past decade–they even have pictures of her in Tijuana, proving her involvement. But she’s just an insurance agent from small town Arkansas. She’s never even been out of the country. What in the world is going on?

 

Chief Deputy Ian Velez can’t look forward to the holidays this year. His five-year-old daughter and two-year-old son are missing, kidnapped by his mentally unstable wife. His once idyllic home life has been turned on its head while he works on the single most important case of his career, busting open the Dominguez Cartel. Then he sees their first real lead into the case: Hannah Barker. But this beautiful if unworldly woman comes across as innocent rather than guilty.

 

When Hannah is nearly killed while in the FBI’s custody, Ian saves her in the nick of time, but this alerts him to a mole working within the auspices of the Bureau. Cutting contact with the FBI and his superiors seems his only option. Ian runs with Hannah to a snowy cabin in the middle of the wilderness. While hiding there, sparks fly between the two, surprising them both. Should they try to make the best out of a bad situation? Or is their sanctuary in much more danger than it seems?

 

My Review:

Hannah Barker is looking forward to celebrating Christmas but all that changes when she’s put in handcuffs in front of her insurance co-workers and hauled off for questioning. She’s mistaken for a Mexican drug mule and the FBI has DNA proof. She’s as squeaky clean as a girl scout but no one believes her. No one, except for Chief Deputy Ian.

 

Ian’s gut tells him Hannah is telling the truth. When shots are fired and it appears like the FBI has a mole, he grabs Hannah and heads for his cabin the woods. Now, they’re both on the run and stuck inside a small, deserted cabin. Sparks fly between Ian and Hannah and before you can say yowsy, they explore these feelings.

 

But there’s hidden secrets in Hannah’s past and they’re the ones gunning for her death. Can Ian save her from an executioner’s bullet or will he be too late?

 

Wow! What a fantastic romantic suspense novella. Filled with fleshed-out characters and tons of intense suspense, I read this in one sitting. Hall does an impressive job hiking up the stakes with intrigue, romance and a few steamy sex scenes. It didn’t feel rushed, even though it was a novella, and the characters were well-developed.

 

If you’re a fan of suspense with doses of hot romance, pick up this book today! I look forward to reading more from Jeannie Hall.

 

Favorite Character: Hannah. I liked her immediately and it was enjoyable to be immersed in her head while on the run and trying to out-run the FBI, the Mexican Cartel and her own feelings. Spunky, well-developed and a woman I’d love to be friends with. Go get ‘em, Hannah!

 

Favorite Quote:

“Turned out those fairytales she’d memorized as a kid were complete crap. Her picture-perfect future of floating down the aisle to her soul mate would never come true, so she’d cut her losses. She didn’t need a man, anyway.”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Clear-Christmas-Novella-ebook/dp/B01M74KO07

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/675315

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32789759-a-midnight-clear

 

Author Biography:

Jeannie Hall is a romantic thriller writer who creates dark and intense situations for her characters before giving them their happy ending. She is the author of VIOLATION OF FAITH, book one in the Cult Wife series (available in both print and eBook), and A MIDNIGHT CLEAR, a Christmas novella (available in eBook format).

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://jeanniehallsuspense.com/

Twitter http://twitter.com/JeannieHallAuth

Facebook http://facebook.com/JeannieHallAuthor

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

One of the Best #Paranormal #Thriller Series: World on Fire by @LincolnJCole #POTLReads


RavensPeak

 

Title Raven’s Peak (Book I, World on Fire)

Author Lincoln Cole

Genre Horror/Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Thriller

Publisher Kindle Press

Book Blurb

A quiet little mountain town is hiding a big problem. When the townsfolk of Raven’s Peak start acting crazy, Abigail Dressler is called upon to discover the root of the evil affecting people. She uncovers a demonic threat unlike any she’s ever faced and finds herself in a fight just to stay alive.

Abigail rescues Haatim Arison from a terrifying fate and discovers that he has a family legacy in the supernatural that he knows nothing about. Now she’s forced to protect him, which is easy, but also to trust him if she wants to save the townsfolk of Raven’s Peak. Trust, however, is something hard to have for someone who grew up living on the knife’s edge of danger.

Can they discover the cause of the town’s insanity and put a stop to it before it is too late?

 

book-viral-award

 

Raven’s Peak is a Finalist and You Can Help:

BookViral is pleased to announce the final six authors shortlisted for the 2016 BookViral Book Award. Shortlisting titles is always extremely hard and as in previous years, we now open the shortlisted titles to readers votes. Your votes won’t decide the winner but they will certainly influence and inform our thinking. You can click on the covers above to read our full spotlight review. To vote for your favourite title simply click on the voting button to be taken to our voting page. It’s a simple as that, but your vote will help  your favourite title receive the recognition it deserves. Voting closes at midday GMT on November 17th 2016. 

http://www.bookviral.com/2016-bookviral-book-award/4593063487

 

Excerpt

“Reverend, you have a visitor.”

He couldn’t remember when he fell in love with the pain. When agony first turned to pleasure, and then to joy. Of course, it hadn’t always been like this. He remembered screaming all those years ago when first they put him in this cell; those memories were vague, though, like reflections in a dusty mirror.

“Open D4.”

A buzz as the door slid open, inconsequential. The aching need was what drove him in this moment, and nothing else mattered. It was a primal desire: a longing for the tingly rush of adrenaline each time the lash licked his flesh. The blood dripping down his parched skin fulfilled him like biting into a juicy strawberry on a warm summer’s day.

“Some woman. Says she needs to speak with you immediately. She says her name is Frieda.”

A pause, the lash hovering in the air like a poised snake. The Reverend remembered that name, found it dancing in the recesses of his mind. He tried to pull himself back from the ritual, back to reality, but it was an uphill slog through knee-deep mud to reclaim those memories.

It was always difficult to focus when he was in the midst of his cleansing. All he managed to cling to was the name. Frieda. It was the name of an angel, he knew. . . or perhaps a devil.

One and the same when all was said and done.

She belonged to a past life, only the whispers of which he could recall. The ritual reclaimed him, embraced him with its fiery need. His memories were nothing compared to the whip in his hand, its nine tails gracing his flesh.

The lash struck down on his left shoulder blade, scattering droplets of blood against the wall behind him. Those droplets would stain the granite for months, he knew, before finally fading away. He clenched his teeth in a feral grin as the whip landed with a sickening, wet slapping sound.

“Jesus,” a new voice whispered from the doorway. “Does he always do that?”

“Every morning.”

“You’ll cuff him?”

“Why? Are you scared?”

The Reverend raised the lash into the air, poised for another strike.

“Just…man, you said he was crazy…but this…”

The lash came down, lapping at his back and the tender muscles hidden there. He let out a groan of mixed agony and pleasure.

These men were meaningless, their voices only echoes amid the rest, an endless drone. He wanted them to leave him alone with his ritual. They weren’t worth his time.

“I think we can spare the handcuffs this time; the last guy who tried spent a month in the hospital.”

“Regulation says we have to.”

“Then you do it.”

The guards fell silent. The cat-o’-nine-tails, his friend, his love, became the only sound in the roughhewn cell, echoing off the granite walls. He took a rasping breath, blew it out, and cracked the lash again. More blood. More agony. More pleasure.

“I don’t think we need to cuff him,” the second guard decided.

“Good idea. Besides, the Reverend isn’t going to cause us any trouble. He only hurts himself. Right, Reverend?”

The air tasted of copper, sickly sweet. He wished he could see his back and the scars, but there were no mirrors in his cell. They removed the only one he had when he broke shards off to slice into his arms and legs. They were afraid he would kill himself.

How ironic was that?

“Right, Reverend?”

Mirrors were dangerous things, he remembered from that past life. They called the other side, the darker side. An imperfect reflection stared back, threatening to steal pieces of the soul away forever.

 

Buy Links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01FVEZ6G2

 

Lincoln Cole

 

Author Biography

Lincoln Cole is a Columbus-based author who enjoys traveling and has visited many different parts of the world, including Australia and Cambodia, but always returns home to his pugamonster and wife. His love for writing was kindled at an early age through the works of Isaac Asimov and Stephen King and he enjoys telling stories to anyone who will listen.

 

Social Media Links

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/LincolnJCole

Twitter https://www.twitter.com/LincolnJCole

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Lincoln-Cole/e/B00AUIOU3A/

 

ravens-fall

 

Title Raven’s Fall (Book II, World on Fire)

Genre Horror/Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Thriller

Publisher LC Publishing

Book Blurb

Abigail was arrested by the Council, and now she’s awaiting trial for the decisions she made leading up to and culminating in the events of Raven’s Peak. She is restless while she waits for answers and knows that there is a real threat outside their walls plotting to bring them down.

Meanwhile, Haatim is getting a crash course in this world he knew nothing about and finding out that nothing is as it seems. He’s being taught how to survive, but will it be enough?

There are dark clouds on the horizon and it is coming whether they are prepared or not. Will they be able to weather this storm?

 

Excerpt

As soon as Abigail stepped outside the house, she knew something was wrong. She no longer stood alone, although she couldn’t see anyone else around her in the immediate proximity. How could she know? Nevertheless, she felt certain.

 

Alert and alarmed, she slipped her gun loose and crept toward her car, scanning the area around the house. Dark and cloudy, she couldn’t see anything.

 

When she drew closer, Abigail noticed that the vehicle rested lower than it should have. Someone had slashed the tires.

 

Not waiting for the trap to spring on her, she sprinted to the right, running toward a fence leading into an old horse paddock. A shout came from behind, followed by a gunshot. Abigail ducked and dashed to the fence, climbed over it, and dove into the tall grass below.

 

Years of horses walking over the muddy terrain had made the ground uneven. Luckily, the grass stood several feet tall and disguised her entire body, especially with such little light.

 

Abigail landed hard and rolled, ducking into the grass as more shots fired behind her. She kept moving, crawling low through the grass and, occasionally, glancing back the way she had come.

 

Near her car, three people ran toward her. Although Abigail couldn’t recognize their faces, she knew them from the way they moved: Colton Depardieu, Jack Wright, and Anong Sao.

 

It looked like they had come to finish what they had started back in Lausanne. Colton raised his pistol and fired into the grass. The shot fell behind her, but not as far away as she would like.

 

Abigail flinched, ducked again, and continued crawling. On this breezy night, the grass wafted in the wind and masked her progress. She moved fast, staying low, and went another fifteen or so meters. When she checked again, her pursuers had made it through the gate and into the field. They combed the area slowly, spread out to fan the entire field, and worked their way toward her.

 

Abigail held onto her revolver. At the least, she could drop one of them from her hiding spot. Anong stood closest, oblivious to her. They hadn’t prepared for her to retaliate, and she could put a bullet in Anong and still (probably) crawl away without the other two being able to find her immediately.

 

However, she didn’t. These were Hunters, her brothers and sisters, and killing them felt … wrong.

 

Though she might well regret it, Abigail slipped her revolver away instead and belly-crawled through the weeds and toward the fence. There, she found an opening that she could crawl under and slid outside the field. Abigail couldn’t see any other houses or vehicles in the area, but an old barn sat only fifty meters from her.

 

It looked like it had burnt up in a fire years ago, probably due to lightning or hooligans, and only half of it remained standing. Still, it gave better cover than nothing.

 

Abigail moved cautiously, crouching low, and made her way to the barn. Once there, she ducked inside, out of sight of the fields, and let out a quiet sigh.

 

Buy Links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Ravens-Fall-World-Fire-Book-ebook/dp/B01LW31JLU

 

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Title The Ninth Circle (Book 0, World on Fire, Side Jobs)

Genre Horror/Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Thriller

Publisher LC Publishing

 

Book Blurb

Arthur Vangeest has been hunting a cult known as the Ninth Circle for months and finally located their base of operations, but something goes terribly wrong before he can strike at them. Someone he trusts betrays him and his wife and young daughter are murdered. Now he isn’t sure if there is anything left to live for. But, when he exacts his revenge on the people the hurt him, he finds a new reason to stay alive.

This short story takes place several years before the events of Raven’s Peak and details how Arthur first discovered Abigail and how she gave him something new to live for.

 

Excerpt

Arthur Vangeest ran the wet sharpening stone down the edge of his sword, feeling it glide along the razor-sharp finish. His motions were practiced and precise, yet his mind was far away in his own thoughts.

 

The blade didn’t need the honing: he could have shaved the stubble off his face with it if he was willing to risk cutting his head off.

 

But he needed it: the action served to keep him from being idle. This was something he did before every battle, a superstitious ritual. He did it in an effort to maintain calmness and composure in the face of adversity while he risked his life for the Council. Right now, however, he was sharpening his sword to control the horrible despair and anger raging in his heart.

 

It wasn’t working.

 

“Are you all right, Arthur?” Frieda asked. Her voice was tender, as though she were afraid to speak up around him because he might break.

 

Maybe she wasn’t wrong. He glanced at her, meeting her eyes, but his hands kept gliding the stone down the blade. Frieda was wearing a black leather suit and had dyed her hair crimson in preparation for the upcoming mission.

 

She was beautiful and austere with a mole on her left cheek and eyes that pierced into whoever she looked at. She was, Arthur knew from personal experience, an incredibly dangerous woman.

 

“I’m fine.”

 

“Are you sure? You haven’t been—”

 

“I said I’m fine,” he reiterated.

 

She pursed her lips, thoughtful. “You don’t need to go in with us,” she said. “After everything that—”

 

“I’m going in,” he interrupted. “When we breach the building, I’ll push for the ritual chamber and search for survivors. I am not staying behind.”

 

Frieda hesitated but didn’t object. “Very well. From all reports, there should be four or five innocents trapped inside, so we need all the help we can get.”

 

“How many hostiles?”

 

“Somewhere in the range of fifty, but we can’t get an accurate count. At least nine are possessed. The rest are zealots.”

 

They were sitting on a park bench just outside Allison Falls in Virginia. It was beautiful in the midafternoon. They were waiting for three more Hunters to arrive from out of state before they attacked the Ninth Circle. Frieda had called in a team, Charles and Mildred Greathouse and Dexter Colson, to deal with this cell. They were flying in from around the world, the Greathouse family from Europe and Dexter from Brazil.

 

This was one of the biggest cells they’d ever located, and removing it from play would severely cripple and diminish the cult. This was a longtime project of Arthur’s, a venture he had dedicated years of his life to and risked everything to find.

 

He had, in fact, lost everything.

 

He underestimated the resourcefulness of the cult in finding out information about him. Someone within his own Order had betrayed him, and The Ninth Circle discovered where he lived. His wife and child were murdered in their sleep and left horribly butchered for him to find. It was the worst sight he’d ever experienced, and it was waiting for him when he’d come home.

 

That had been two weeks ago. He hadn’t discovered who betrayed him inside the Order yet, but he intended to pay them back in full. He knew that Frieda felt the same way, and she’d been cautious and withdrawn since the murder had taken place.

 

“How long?”

 

Frieda checked her watch. “We can start moving,” she replied. “The second plane touched down ten minutes ago. I can direct the other Hunters to meet us at the site. If we leave now, we will arrive about twenty minutes ahead of them.”

 

“All right,” he said, standing up and sliding his sword away. He dropped the sharpening stone onto the park bench and started walking toward her car. “Let’s go.”

 

Buy Links

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01KKOBKRC

 

Download a free copy through Instafreebie: https://www.instafreebie.com/free/K5baU

 

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We’re celebrating books and authors all October on the POTL Blog. Follow #POTLReads on Twitter to not miss our recommendations and to offer your own! Spread the Word! 

Get to Know Author @LinWilder and Her Upcoming Medical Mystery #POTLReads #FridayReads


Lin Wilder

We first met Lin Wilder in 2015 and after reading her gripping, Do You Solemnly Swear?, we couldn’t get enough of her writing. We’re big fans and after a few nudgings, she agreed to sit down for an author interview. So, grab your favorite beverage and enjoy! Take it away, Lin: 

 

What is your writing process?

It is not linear. Or analytical or anything like my system when I wrote non-fiction. Totally intuitive, ‘from the seat of my pants’ if you will. During the process of writing my first novel, I wasted many months in futile attempts to come with an outline. Finally, I just began to write the book. As I consider my next book, the 4th in my series, I realize that the title is a very early part of my ‘process’ as are important new characters; their names and an image of what they look like and their outstanding attributes.

Do you have any odd writing habits?

I think most of us writers are odd…therefore odd writing habits are to be expected, aren’t they?

Mine? I never have an outline, title generally appears first—at least early. And have no routine—I write when the words are there, only then. I have learned through many failed attempts to push it that if the words are not there then I will write only drivel. The entire intuitive nature of creative writing feels odd to me—even after 3 novels. And with each new novel, I have to relearn to trust this non-rational, non-system…of waiting until the words appear.

What book do you wish you could have written?

What a cool question! It’s actually a play, A Man for all Seasons by Robert Bolt.

Just as your books inspire authors, what authors have inspired you?

Since I read voraciously and have since childhood, there are many. Too many to list here. However, the writers which immediately come to mind are: Dean Koontz, Jodi Piccault, Daniel Silva, Carolyn Keane, Albert Payson Terhune, DW Buffa, Daniel Pink, Stephen Pressfield and Robert Greene.

If you could cast your characters in the Hollywood adaptation of your book, who would play your characters?

Jodi Foster as Dr. Lindsey McCall, Diane Lane would play Kate Townsend, Gerard Butler as Rich Jansen and Liam Hemsworth as Gabe McAllister. Ask me this question next year and the names would change.

How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

Names are crucial. But not just the way the name sounds rather the ‘fit’ with the character- the person he or she is. I cannot write about a main character without the name. Sometimes it takes time for the name to show up. But usually they hang around for a while. Here is an example: For the book I’ll start as soon as I ‘recover’ from the just published A Price for Genius, the name Morgan Gardner had been in my mind for close to a year. I knew she was a new character for the next book. A surprise because she is 18 and I don’t write about young characters—teens but I guess that is about to change.

What do you consider to be your best accomplishment?

Not sure what you are asking here. I have had a number of careers since it’s been a long time since I’ve been called ‘young.’ In each of the careers, I worked hard-often too hard and accumulated a list of what could be called accomplishments. One of what could be called both a burden and a blessing for me is that once I understand-get something as in master it, I lose interest. Because I think there is so much to learn in our very short lifetimes. So I am going to reword your question to what is the best decision I have ever made? It is two pronged: When I became a Christian Catholic-and when I married my husband John.

Current accomplishments? Writing better books each time. This next book is better than the last one. That is always the goal.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

It’s a funny thing but I have never made 5 year goals. Ever. I concentrate on what is happening now- on what I am working on now. Even back when I had no title at all, the goal was simple. For the first few decades, it was to complete the next degree. Which took a long time—Then it was to finish this article or that chapter or the textbook. And then it was to get this or that job. Current goal—force myself to wait at least 6 weeks before starting next book.

Have you always liked to write?

Yes. But until 7 years ago it was non-fiction. The switch to fiction was a surprise- unplanned, like most of my life. And a dream I pretended I no longer wanted until suddenly there I was writing my first novel. I was shocked.

What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?

Write. Don’t talk about writing, write. Don’t ask others’ opinions, write. Every once in a while, read an author you know is great that you love and let yourself be intimidated, overwhelmed and convinced you can never write like him or her. Because you can’t. Don’t try. Get a good, no a great editor. Promise yourself once you begin that you will finish it.

If you didn’t like writing books, what would you do for a living?

Write plays.

Are you a plotter or a pantster?

Not sure what you mean here but am guessing that you are referring back to my reply to question #2. So think I am ‘seat of the pants’.

Do you read your reviews?

Yes of course! Each and every one! Do you respond to them, good or bad? No not usually. Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad? Get over it!

What is your best marketing tip?

Develop an email list of interested readers. Then send compelling messages about each new book.

What is your least favorite part of the publishing / writing process?

Editing, proofing, then more editing and more proofing.

Is there one subject you would never write about as an author?

Graphic sex as in erotica or horror.

Do you have a favorite spot to write? No. What is it?

Since I use a laptop, I write anywhere and everywhere. So no favorite.

Is there a certain type of scene that’s harder for you to write than others? Love? Action? Racy?

Initially, the sexual scenes were difficult then the murder…now, who knows?

Is this your first book? How many books have you written prior (if any?)

No, this is my sixth book.

What are you working on now?

A Pale Horse- Malthus Revisited.

What is your next project?

It will be the 4th of the Lindsey McCall series.

 

Now for something more personal…

 

Do you write naked?

No.

What is your biggest failure?

Not starting to write fiction before now. Looking at this answer, I am not sure that’s true because I think my early fictional writing would not be anywhere as good as it is now.

What is the biggest fib you’ve ever told?

That Hemmingway was my favorite author before I had read any of his books, or any authors of literary quality for that matter.

Have you ever been in trouble with the law?

No.

Have you ever gotten into a fight?

Verbally, plenty of times. No, not a physical fight.

Characters often find themselves in situations they aren’t sure they can get themselves out of. When was the last time you found yourself in a situation that was hard to get out of and what did you do?

I have an absurdly awful sense of direction. My husband and I were in Rome on vacation and we went totally different directions in a weirdly configured museum. I walked in circles for over an hour looking for him. Finally, he found and increasingly desperate me.

Do you drink? Smoke? What’s your vice?

Don’t smoke yes I drink but not to the point that it’s a problem. Biggest vice? Pride, vanity selfishness-the usual banal list.

What is your biggest fear?

Not fully using each of my gifts. Being lazy, wasting time.

What do you want your tombstone to say?

Don’t care what it says. Figure by then I have done all that I can do so what is written there does not matter.

If you had a superpower, what would it be?

Converse with animals- all of them, really understanding one another, the way it must have been in Eden.

If you were a super hero, what would your name be? What costume would you wear?

Wonder Woman- her costume would be fine.

What literary character is most like you?

Both Kate Townsend and Lindsey McCall have similar qualities.

 

What secret talents do you have?

Anything I do well is public knowledge. It’s the stuff I do poorly that I keep to myself.

Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?

Israel. I would like to see where Christ lived.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

Humpback whale. I think they have sacred knowledge.

What’s on your bucket list (things to do before you die)?

Don’t have a bucket list.  Am not a list maker. Probably should be but am not.

If you could have any name in the world, what would you choose?

Probably Lindsey.

Do you have any scars? What are they from?

On my knees from road rash.

What were you like as a child? Your favorite toy?

Withdrawn loner. My blue stuffed dog with an unimaginative name: Blue Dog

What do you dream? Do you have any recurring dreams/nightmares?

Yes, trying to escape humungous tidal waves.

 

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Title: A Price for Genius

Author: Lin Wilder

Genre: Medical Mystery

Publisher: Wyatt Mackenzie Imprint

 

Book Blurb:

Dr. Lindsey McCall’s worst fears are realized. Not only have both drugs been stolen but two women have been kidnapped- one maybe dead. Lindsey had known Liisa Reardon’s new drug was alchemy, only this time, the end product actually more precious than gold.

The desperate call from Hank Reardon in Switzerland came late at night causing too many questions. And no answers. Could Lindsey and Rich Jansen uncover who was behind the crimes? It was an inside job-could they figure out who had sold out the Reardons? All in time to save Reardon’s daughter and her chief tech Ariana? Were they risking their lives as well?

The evil words smolder in her mind, the contents of the letter delivered to Hank Reardon

Hello Mr. Reardon,

By the time you get this letter, it will be too late. We’ll already have her.

Here are the steps you must not take:

  • Do not call the cops.
  • Do not contact the FBI
  • Tell no one.
  • We’ll know if you or the FBI. We’ll and we’ll kill her instantly.

You must know Sir, there is a price for genius. We trust you will pay it if you want to see your daughter alive.

 

Excerpt:

PROLOGUE

 Lausanne, Switzerland

Suddenly regaining consciousness, Rich Jansen attempted to stand, then instantly regretted the movement. The pain began at the base of his head and exploded in successive and increasingly intense waves of agony, forcing him to close his eyes, hang his head and wait motionless. Remaining on his hands and knees for a minute then two for the pain to subside, for the nausea to fade, Jansen risked opening his eyes. Squinting at the bright light, he very slowly and carefully moved his head from right to left.

So far so good. Linoleum floor, shiny black and white. That noise what is that sound? Aw no, don’t tell me, please God…

The memories flooded back as Rich raised himself up enough to crouch, knowing better than to immediately stand up. Gingerly reaching behind his head with his right hand, he winced when his fingers probed a large wet and sore swelling at the back of his head. Slowly he stood, swaying a bit while the vast room spun about him.

Whatever they hit me with carried a hell of a wallop.

The phone call from Reardon had happened last night? Or was it yesterday? The minute he hung up the phone, Rich had called the airport to secure a seat on the next flight to Zurich. Sixteen hours later, he had arrived at the animal research labs in the corporate offices of Andrews, Sacks, and Levine, one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, located in Lausanne Switzerland.

The elfin Ariana had been showing him where the test mice were kept when everything went black. Looking around for her Jansen saw only a few spots of blood and some scuff marks. He saw mice scrabbling all over the lab; for whatever reasons, whoever broke in decided to free hundreds of mice and Ariana was nowhere to be seen.

The letter…where is the letter?

Jansen reached into the pockets of his sports jacket, the copy of the one he’d had on since leaving San Luis Obispo, California and breathed a sigh of relief when his right hand pulled out the single page. A page now bloodied from his head wound.

Hello Mr. Reardon,

By the time you get this letter, it will be too late. We’ll already have her.

Here are the steps you must not take:

  • Do not call the cops.
  • Do not contact the FBI
  • Tell no one.

We’ll know if you contact the police or the FBI. We’ll know and we’ll kill her instantly. But we are civilized businesspeople; this is all about business after all. Do nothing at all until you hear from us. And you will hear from us, Mr. Reardon.

You must know Sir, there is a price for genius. We trust you will pay it if you want to see your daughter alive.

In the other pocket of his jacket, Jansen found his cell. He hit her number.

Please pick up, please pick up.

Heart hammering as he counted the rings, Jansen’s knees nearly buckled with relief when his wife answered her phone. “Lindsey, where are you?”

“Neither. I’m at the track, I was just starting a run with Max.” Lindsey stopped still. She could hear the tension in her husband’s voice.

“Honey, I need to you to get here as soon as you can find someone to take care of Max and get a flight out to Zurich. We’ll pick you up at the airport.”

“What’s happened Rich, what is going on?”

“ Someone clubbed me while Ari was showing me around the lab. When I woke up, Ariana was missing and hundreds of mice were running around loose. Ari and I must have surprised whoever has decided to steal Liisa’s research. Hank is…well, you can imagine how he is.” Grabbing a nearby chair to steady himself, “There’s a letter from Liisa’s kidnappers. We need you to figure out how we meet their demands, we don’t have a lot of time.”

“Are you okay?” Lindsey was on her phone searching for flights out of San Francisco to Zurich  as she waited for his answer.

Rich swayed from another wave of dizziness and nausea, gulped and replied, “Other than a mega lump on the back of my skull, yeah, I’m fine.. Whoever it was just wanted me out of commission for a few minutes. Ari and I must have interrupted whoever it was.”

Rich surveyed the disarray in the lab. Cages were overturned and he could hear the squeals of mice and the scrabbling of their feet on the tiled floor. That had been the noise he had heard when he was coming to. He was way too old for this crap and knew just who he’d call once he ended the call with his wife.

“I can get there faster from San Francisco. I’m calling Kate to make sure it would be okay to bring Max to their house. I’ll aim to be in Zurich by tomorrow at this time, will call you when I know the time I’ll get in. Be careful Rich, please.” But there was only dead air.

“Hey, McAllister, Rich Jansen here. Are you and Baron still roaming free around the country?

“Yo, Rich!” Rich could hear the smile in Gabe’s voice.

“Are you still looking to work for Zach and me?”

“You mean like as a private investigator?”

“Probably more than just investigation Gabe.”

“What do you mean?”

“Gabe, this could get dicey. Two women have been kidnapped, Reardon has a note threatening that they’ll kill his head of research at his pharmaceutical company Andrews, Sacks, and Levine if he brings in the police or the feds. She also happens to be his daughter. And I’ve been attacked within my first hour here.” Scanning the space once again, hoping that Ariana would materialize, Jansen added, “And it looks as if they grabbed the head of the animal research labs too. She was showing me around when we were suddenly assaulted. She is nowhere to be found.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Price-Genius-Dr-Lin-Wilder/dp/1942545681/ref=cm_wl_huc_item#productPromotions

 

Author Biography:

Lin Weeks Wilder has published dozens of articles, wrote a textbook, and has written four self-help books. Lin has written three medical thrillers situated in Houston, Texas where Lin worked for over 23 years.

The Fragrance Shed by a Violet, the sequel Do You Solemnly Swear? and the third in her series, A Price for Genius. The story of the return to faith, Finding the Narrow Road was an unplanned surprise. In her free time, Lin Wilder enjoys hiking, listening to beautiful music, gardening and last but certainly not least, reading. Lin is married to a former Marine and psychologist with 25 years of experience counseling ex- combat veterans. They reside in Nevada with their two dogs.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lincwilder?ref=hl

Twitter https://twitter.com/LinWilder

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/linwilder

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/linwilder

About Me https://about.me/lin.wilder

Amazon Author Page http://www.amazon.com/Dr.-Lin-Wilder/e/B007L380OM

 

 

Our Justice by John W. Howell @HowellWave #Thriller #POTLReads #RRBC


 

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Title: Our Justice

Author: John W. Howell

Genre: Thriller

Publisher: Keewaydin Lane Books

 

Book Blurb:

The terrorist leader and financier Matt Jacobs figured out a plan to eliminate the President. He is relying on John Cannon’s stature as a hero to help him carry it off. John finds himself walking the fine line of pretending to help Matt while trying to figure out a countermeasure to the plan.

 

The third book in the John J. Cannon Trilogy brings together two strong wills for a showdown. The question to be answered is who will feel the satisfaction that the achievement of justice delivers? John, Matt or neither?

 

Excerpt:

I see out of the corner of my eye that Ned is on the phone. Hopefully, he’s calling in reinforcements since it looks like the SUV is gaining on us. Just as the rear window of the Focus blows inward, he finishes the call. Hundreds of pieces of glass hit Ned and me. Luckily, it’s shatterproof stuff, so we’re mostly okay cut wise. Ned crouches down and fires three quick shots with his 9MM. In the mirror, the SUV swerves to the left and almost explodes after it rams a parked car. “Stop,” Ned yells.

 

I slam on the brakes, which nearly tosses Ned through the windshield. “For shit’s sake, I don’t have a seatbelt on, junior, so take it easy. Just stop and turn around.”

 

“You think those guys are still alive? The way that SUV went into that parked car, I would bet the driver is no longer with us.”

 

“Yeah, I bet you’re right. Just in case, though, slow down and stop fifty feet before them.”

 

I slow the Focus and come to a stop. Steam rises from what used to be the front of the SUV. The entire front end has been driven into the parked car, which looks like an old Cadillac—good and heavy, which doesn’t bode well for the SUV.

 

Ned gets out of the Focus and stands behind the door with his gun aimed at the SUV. “Don’t see anyone moving,” he says. “I’m going to approach the vehicle from the right. You stay here.”

 

He didn’t need to remind me to stay out of the way. By now, I’ve learned to let the professionals handle the sticky situations. Ned moves off to the right and walks at a slow pace up the slight grassy incline, which ends at the side of the surf shop. It’s obvious that he isn’t going to approach the SUV directly. I have to assume the line of fire for the guys in the SUV is severely restricted, since the way the SUV came to rest on the parked car, it’s as if it was parked that way on purpose. They’ll have to sight and fire out of the side windows, which will be tough since all the windows are up. Just when I thought there was no one alive in the SUV, a loud blast from inside blows out the rear side window and onto the grass. Ned falls down on his stomach, and I’m not sure if he’s been hit. While I sit wondering, a round of automatic fire erupts from the SUV, and the bullets stitch a line slightly above Ned, throwing up pieces of brick and mortar in a reddish haze.

 

I punch the accelerator on the focus and steer into the rear of the SUV. The airbags deploy, and the impact to my head leaves me dazed. A couple of seconds later, the bags deflate, and while still seeing stars, I attempt to open the door and get out. Something tells me to move quickly, and then I realize that the smell of gasoline is everywhere. I must have punctured the fuel tank. When I lift the handle and push against the door with my shoulder, nothing happens. I realize I am also still in the seat belt and think this is why I can’t move. I unlatch the belt and shove hard on the door and still cannot open it.

 

Buy Links:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LDFM9WM?ref_=pe_2427780_160035660

Amazon Author Page https://www.amazon.com/author/johnwhowell

 

john-howell-headshot

 

Author Biography:

John’s main interests are reading and writing. He turned to writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive career in business. John writes fictional short stories and novels as well as a daily blog.  His first novel, My GRL is available on Amazon and wherever e-books are sold. His second, His Revenge is available on Amazon and KDP Select.

 

John lives on a barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of South Texas with his wife and spoiled rescue pets.

 

Social Media Links:

Blog Fiction Favorites, http://johnwhowell.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/john.howell.98229241

Twitter –https://www.twitter.com/HowellWave

Authors db –http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/6604-john-w-howell

LinkedIn –http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-w-howell/48/b59/462/

Google +https://plus.google.com/+JohnHowellAuthor/

Goodreads –https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7751796.John_W_Howell

Martin Sisters Publishing –Http://www.martinsisterspublishing.com

 

potl-reads-2

 

We’re celebrating books and authors all October on the POTL Blog. Follow #POTLReads on Twitter to not miss our recommendations and to offer your own! Spread the Word! 

 

Welcome Back to the Stone Age — He Runs: Part 1 by @OwenSethAuthor #books #amreading


He Runs Part One

 

Title – He Runs: Part One

Author – Owen Seth

Genre – Post Apocalyptic / Thriller

 

Book Blurb

With Mankind relegated to the Stone Age, one man struggles against the cruelty of the world that’s left behind. With many obstacles in his path, every day becomes a fight for survival…against the world and himself.
A psychological, apocalyptic thriller that keeps the reader guessing throughout, He Runs is raw and disturbing and unapologetically brutal.

 

Excerpt – 

Man wanders.

Man explores.

Man runs.

And we find him at this point in his journey, with a dog. It’s a large dog, a black retriever cross, male, with long strands of hair intersecting fleshy areas of mange and a loosely-fitted muzzle engulfing the snout to protect both of them. Man drags the dog using a makeshift lead, fashioned from an electric cord that once hung loose from the back of a TV set. Man holds the cord in his hand, the brown wiring taught with canine strength, and can’t remember the last time he watched TV. He guesses that it was the same day that the lights went off. The same day that initiated the test for Mankind’s love and compassion.

And then broke it.

 

Buy Links

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/He-Runs-Part-Owen-Seth-ebook/dp/B01HN13FAU

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/He-Runs-Part-Owen-Seth-ebook/dp/B01HN13FAU/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1470177401&sr=8-3&keywords=owen+seth

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30763180-he-runs?ac=1&from_search=true

 

Owen Seth

Author Biography

Owen Seth is the self-published author of ‘Abattoir’, ‘He Runs: Part One’, and ‘Soup’. He is currently working on ‘He Runs: Part Two’ and ‘The Nights: A Novella’.

In 2009 he graduated from Northumbria University with an Upper Second Class Honours Degree in English and Art History and has recently completed a Master’s Degree in Creative Writing at Newcastle University.

Other than writing he enjoys cooking, reading (surprise), geeking out over Game of Thrones, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and beer-tasting.

Currently he resides near the coast in the North of England with his girlfriend and their new kitten.

 

Social Media Links

Blog – https://authorowenseth.wordpress.com/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/OwenSethAuthor/

Twitter – @owensethauthor

Best #Mystery of 2016: Cries in the Wind by Judy Bruce #suspense #bookreview


Cries series3

 

Title: Cries in the Wind (Wind Series, #3)

Author: Judy Bruce

Genre: Fiction, Mystery, Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

The third story in the Wind Series finds Megan stirred by the mystery of two strangers and the unsolved murders of two local women from decades past. Pregnant yet haunted, Megan summons the help of close family and friends then plunges into an investigation which uncovers deceit, revenge, and betrayal. As Megan nears the truth, she and her crew become endangered by the killer. When Megan persists, she faces disastrous consequences.

 

My Review:

This is the best book Judy Bruce has written and I couldn’t put it down!

 

In book three of the Wind series, Megan is pregnant and trying to come to grips with what just happened (book 2 – Alone in the Wind). She’s troubled by past transgressions and just when she thinks she’s got a handle on things, she hears two females crying in the wind.

 

Back in 1968, there was a brutal double murder. The local police caught someone fleeing the scene but he’s protested his innocence. Now, two of his sons have come to Megan in the hopes she’ll sell the land where the murders took place.

 

Megan starts to investigate, only to find those closest to her evading her questions. The more she investigates, the more she realizes how deep this goes. Threats are made on her life and even her friends and family aren’t safe. She enlists the help of everyone, including the FBI, and when she finally discovers the truth, tragedy strikes. Can Megan bring the guilty to justice or will she join the Cries in the Wind?

 

This is, by far, the best Wind book and kudos to Bruce for creating a mystery/thriller so intense I was white-knuckling my tablet as I read it. An intricate plot with multiple angles and twists, Cries in the Wind is superb! I loved Megan and I connected with her on so many levels. She and I were of the same feeling when it came to her husband and I gave Megan an invisible high-five when she came to her decision.

 

I also loved the sub-plots with the minor characters (Megan’s friends and family). I won’t give anything away but I became more attached to her posse (as I call them) than in the previous two books. I was actually sad when the book ended. I wanted more! Lol!

 

If you’re looking for a mystery/thriller, pick this up immediately! You’ll love it! I can’t wait for the next in the Wind series.

 

Favorite Character:

Megan. She’s one tough cookie and in this book, everything she loves and holds dear is put on the line, including her own life. Yet, she doesn’t back down. I want her as my friend, that’s for sure, and I have to try those Bourbon Floats.

 

Favorite Quote:

“What was wrong with me? Why couldn’t I just be a pregnant attorney? I sighed as I folded my arms across the menu I’d memorized two years ago.” — Megan

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Cries-Wind-Judy-Bruce/dp/1576385221

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31183129-cries-in-the-wind

 

Judy Bruce

Author Biography:

Hello, book fans. I am the mother of two, the wife of one, and the sibling of three (formerly four). I also blog at https://heyjoood.com where I ramble about favorite books and movies and personal topics–my younger sister Janet who died of brain cancer, and my autistic son Danny who takes quirky to an amazing level. Aside from writing novels, I have contributed various works on law, history, and social issues. I am a Kirkus Reviews Featured Author, and a member of Goodreads, the Authors Guild, the Cassell Network of Writers, and the American Film Institute. Yet my true love, apart from my family, is fiction—writing and reading it.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.judybruce.com/

 

Blog http://www.heyjoood.com/

 

Facebook: You can find her on her public Facebook site (try Judy Bruce 1481)

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

When the Jaguar Sleeps by J. A. Kalis is an Exciting Adventure! #thriller #books


When the Jaguar Sleeps

 

Title:  When The Jaguar Sleeps

Author: J.A. Kalis

Genre:  Adventure Thriller

 

Book Blurb:                       

Ecuador. What was supposed to be a dream holiday turned into a nightmare for a group of foreign tourists when their plane crashed in the Amazon rainforest. Having waited in vain for a couple of days for help to arrive, the survivors of the crash decided to set off on a daring journey determined to get out of the jungle alive. But while pushing on, unaware, they entered a territory inhabited by isolated Indian tribes hostile to outsiders. A territory where probably the fabulous treasures destined for the last Inca emperor Atahualpa’s ransom, had been hidden. As it soon turned out their nightmare was just beginning. Will they ever get out of the jungle alive?

               

Read a sample courtesy of Amazon:

When the Jaguar Sleeps

 

Buy Links:           

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/When-Jaguar-Sleeps-jungle-adventure-ebook/dp/B0187T2R6U

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-the-jaguar-sleeps-j-a-kalis/1123103919

Createspace  https://www.createspace.com/5912580

 

Author Biography:          

My passion for reading, travelling, meeting new people, learning foreign languages, experiencing new cultures combined with my love of adventure inspired me to write my debut novel When the Jaguar Sleeps. I published it under a pen name J.A. Kalis.

It has been always my dream to write my own novel, but somehow, for years, I wasn’t able to get around to it. Finally, an opportunity presented itself and I grabbed it. One day an idea for a story popped into my head, where it began to linger and grow. I just couldn’t get it out of my mind. Slowly, scenes and characters took shape in my brain. And so I began to write my thoughts down. A year later I completed my debut novel, the adventure thriller, When The Jaguar Sleeps. It turned out to be a great writing adventure. I loved it so much that from then on, I decided to pursue my lifelong dream of becoming a full-time writer.

Although English is not my native language, I chose to write my novels in English. Presently, I am working on my second novel, also in English. It will be another action packed, fast paced thriller but set in a different country than the first one. Or to be more precise, set in two different countries.
 

Social Media Links:        

Website https://jakalis.wordpress.com/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14690215.J_A_Kalis

 

 

His Revenge by John W. Howell @HowellWave #thriller #ASMSG #RRBC


His Revenge front final

 

Title: His Revenge

Author: John W. Howell

Genre: Thriller

 

Blurb:

The second John J Cannon story continues John’s wish to bring the terrorist Matt Jacobs to justice. In the first book, My GRL, John was able to thwart the plot to destroy the Annapolis midshipmen on their summer cruise. Of course, terrorists being what they are not content with just one try to embarrass America. In His Revenge, Matt Jacobs takes his hatred for America and John Cannon to another level.

 

The action moves from a barrier Island off the coast of Texas to Washington DC, then to Northern California, and finally to Ecuador. John is on the receiving end of an offer he cannot, refuse. His avowed enemy Matt Jacobs now wants John to help him shake the reputation of the US in the world political arena. If John refuses, Matt plans to murder innocent Americans including John’s current relationship. John’s only way out is to pretend to go along with the plan and hope for a miracle.

 

John can only use his wits to stay ahead of his enemies plans.

 

 

Excerpt:

The water rushes over my head. I’m sinking and don’t know why. With my breath held, I have trouble stopping the air from escaping since the pressure drives the air up and out. I try to keep my mouth closed, but the water pressure pushes the air out more and more. Will I pass out? In the distance, the light is dim. To rise to the surface in time might not be possible─ I need to breathe right now. Toward ending the pain in my chest, my rambling mind rationalizes taking a deep breath—even knowing it will end my life. In conflict with the irrational thought of ending it, my body won’t let me suck in the water, as it fights to retain the little bit of oxygen left to fuel my brain.

 

The despair is nearly overwhelming, and my mind considers other ways to battle the feeling. What more could I have done with my life? The pressure becomes more intense, and I’m about to lose it all, and I decide I’ve lived the way I wanted and have no regrets. I close my eyes and hear only the roar of the sea. I’m so tired. Exhausted. Sleep will fix everything, and I want to give in.

 

Buy Link:

http://www.amazon.com/John-W.-Howell/e/B00HMRWO6C/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1401973977&sr=1-2-ent

 

Photo by Tim Burdick

 

Author Biography:

John’s main interests are reading and writing. He turned to writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive career in business. John writes fictional short stories and novels as well as his blog Fiction Favorites.

 

John lives on a barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of south Texas with his wife and spoiled rescue pets.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/john.howell.98229241

Twitter – https://www.twitter.com/HowellWave

Authors db – http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/6604-john-w-howell

LinkedIn – http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-w-howell/48/b59/462/

Google + https://plus.google.com/+JohnHowellAuthor/

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/johnwhowell/

Shelfari – http://www.shelfari.com/johnwhowell

Amazon Author’s page – https://www.amazon.com/author/johnwhowell

The Folly Under the Lake by @TheFolly1 #mystery #thriller #bookpromo


The Folly Under

 

Title: The Folly Under the Lake

Author: Salema Nazzal

Genre: Fiction/ Detective Murder Mystery/Thriller

Publisher: Pneuma Springs Publishing

 

 

Book Blurb:

Multi-millionaire, oil speculator Walter Sinnet  is crooked and ruthless. He has swindled the investors in his company to fund his extravagant building projects.

 

Walter has a vast lake and subterranean folly built on his property at Witton Park, where he lives with his wife Blanche and two adult children Harry and Rose. The folly is impressive, people can walk through a passage that goes under the lake and enter the folly to sit and watch the fish swim by.

 

Wishing to show off, Walter welcomes a house party to Witton Park but an angry storm lashes down on the village and traps everyone inside the estate. A guest’s jewellery goes missing and a dead body is found floating in the lake.

 

Inspector Marcus Thomas and his young son, along with bumbling sidekick Constable Turner, arrive at Witton Park to solve the mystery. The vital clues are there for them to detect – if they are up to it!

 

Enjoy the many detours and red herrings, but keep your eye on the ball and you might spot that tiny slip-up that leads to unmasking the murderer.

 

Excerpt:

Walter cleared his throat and winced slightly at Florence’s words. He turned abruptly away and began a conversation with Aubrey about how successful Sinnet Industries had become.

 

“Darling…” began Joseph in an undertone, but Florence shushed him and continued shovelling in mouthfuls of food.

 

Halfway through the meal the butler came up to Walter and coughed in a discreet manner. Walter looked up in annoyance. “Yes, what is it?”

 

“The storm is picking up, sir. I’m afraid Mr Marlin has decided not to come because of it.”

 

“Right. I see. Well, can you rearrange a day for him to come next week? It’s imperative I see him as soon as possible.”

 

“Yes sir.” The butler disappeared out of the door.

 

“Why was Mr Marlin coming, Father?” asked Harry, briefly turning his attention away from Hattie. “I didn’t know he was invited this weekend.”

 

“I asked him only yesterday regarding a change I want to make to my will, if you must know,” said Walter looking hard at his son and carving his food up viciously with his knife and fork.

 

“Are you finally cutting me out of it then?” Harry joked in as casual a voice as he could muster up. “You keep threatening to do it.”

 

“What I do with my money is really nothing to do with you.” Walter’s face had an expression on it that was hard to decipher and Hattie, glancing over, felt a bit nervous of him, and noticed for the first time what thin, cruel looking lips he had.

 

“I made my money. Every single coin of it was made because of my business acumen. None of it was passed down from my father. What I wanted I went out and got, and now I shall decide what to do with it when I am no longer around to enjoy it. No one has the right to expect everything handed to them on a plate without working for it.”

 

“Oh. Righto then!” Harry deliberately kept his voice light-hearted and he turned back to face Hattie, who noticed that although he was as attentive as before, his knuckles were white where he was gripping his cutlery too tightly.

 

Aubrey looked across the table at Walter and began to resume their talk about the business. “I hear you’ve formed another company, Walter. Haven’t you got enough to deal with already?”

 

Walter looked across at him with a thin-lipped smile. “I have enough to deal with, but making money is in my blood and if I see a gap in the market I fill it. My new company is floating a variety of stock and bonds on the stock exchange.”

 

“I thought I heard that you had had a spot of trouble doing just that overseas.”

 

Walter frowned. “Now wherever did you hear that, I wonder?”

 

“Just something that came my way by way of the business grapevine,” said Aubrey, with a forced smile.

 

 

Buy Links:

Kobo ePub

Google Play

Amazon Kindle

Apple iBook

NOOK

 

The Folly Under the Lake by Salema Nazzal photo

Author Biography:

Having always had a love for English, Salema qualified to teach it as a foreign language and then went abroad to work in Lebanon. She taught adults at a language centre and eventually ended up helping at a school on the site of an orphanage where she met her husband. She wrote about the plight of the orphans and the article was published in the centre-spread of a Christian newspaper.

 

Salema has been obsessed with whodunits since she was a teenager and was challenged to write her own by her sister Jess. Not knowing where to start she took herself off to college to do a crime writing course with published crime authors Lesley Thomson and Elly Griffiths and hasn’t looked back since.

She currently lives in West Sussex where she takes care of her husband, two children and two cats (not necessarily in that order!)

 

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/thefollyunderthelake

Twitter https://twitter.com/TheFolly1

 

The Girl Within by Sydney Lawrence is a Suspenseful Thriller! #amreading #bookpromo #suspense


THE GIRL WITHIN

Title: The Girl Within

Author: Sydney Lawrence

Genre: Mystery; Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

 

Elizabeth Lyons steps into a nightmare when she returns home to find her husband and young son missing. Nothing is as it seems in this dark, psychological thriller.
Will Elizabeth unravel the tangled mystery or succumb to her worst impulses?
This novel is a standalone book but is the first in a series of two.

 

Excerpt from Chapter 1:

I had known something was wrong almost immediately.  The house was much too quiet.  Maybe my husband, Chris, had somehow managed to get our toddler son to take a nap.  That had to be the reason for the stillness, I told myself.  As I entered our front door, I glanced back at the driveway.  The cars were all there.  They were at home.

 

I took off my shoes and laid them softly near the door.  They had to be asleep.  The last minute phone call I had answered at my store had kept me much longer than I had intended. I was over an hour late getting home.  They must have given up on waiting for me and decided to take a nap before supper.

 

Yet as I repeated the words to myself in my mind, a flutter of unease wouldn’t leave my chest.  You’re being silly.  Everything is fine. I carefully avoided the squeaky board of the living room floor.  Our son could wake up at the slightest bit of noise.  I continued down the hallway to our bedroom.  The door was open.  That was odd.  Usually, we had to close it to darken the room to get Daniel, our always active son, to even consider a nap.  My heart gave an odd little thump.  The guest bedroom-that’s where they were.  Chris often liked to use it for a nap himself.

 

I switched directions and made my way to the smaller, sunny yellow room.  Its door was also open.  I held my breath as I looked inside.  The bed was carefully made, the decorative pillows still in place.

 

Where were they?  I no longer cared about being quiet.  I ran to the other two bedrooms on the opposite side of the house.  We never used them except to fill the closets with clothes that were out of season.  Maybe Daniel had insisted they sleep in one of them for a change.  He was starting to exhibit odd toddler quirks.  Surely, that was what had happened.

 

My heart started to pound heavily when I peered in both rooms only to find them empty with nothing out of place.  I tore through the rest of the house flinging doors open and yelling Chris and Daniel again and again.  The house was silent.

 

My mother-they were with her, I realized.  That had to be it.  She had a car seat in her small SUV.  For some reason, she had picked them up.  I had been acting like a deranged idiot.  They were probably down at her house right now eating supper and talking.  I’d never checked the answering machine and I’d left my cell phone at home that day.  The rambling customer at work had tied up the line at the store.  They’d had no way to reach me.  There must have been a note somewhere.  I had simply overlooked it.

 

I ran into the kitchen and looked around carefully.  No note.

 

 

Buy Links:

 

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01GULFB4W/ref=gi_dp_gtfa

 

 

Author Biography:

 

Author Sydney Lawrence has dabbled in many things in her life, from painting to raising cows.  She is a fan of old movies and Britcoms.  An avid reader, Sydney often finishes more than a novel a week.  She wishes she could write equally fast.

 

Social Media Links:

 

Facebook https://m.facebook.com/writersydneylawrence/manager/#!/writersydneylawrence/

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/191778-the-girl-within

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anonymous by @ChristineBened5 Scared Mrs. N Senseless! #bookreview #thriller #IARTG


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Title: Anonymous

Author: Christine Benedict

Genre: Mystery, Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

Debra Hamilton confronts the fear of inheriting mental illness when her husband moves her into a hundred-year-old farmhouse on fifty-three acres of blacklisted real estate property. Floorboards creak when she’s alone. Objects appear and disappear. Neighbors insinuate the house is haunted but memories of her mother’s schizophrenia make her wonder. Julie, a neighbor who befriends Debra, faces her own fears when a stalker starts sending perverted anonymous letters that cause a rift in Julie’s unstable marriage. Their plots merge as their friendship grows to create a rich and satisfying story.

 

All the letters in the novel are actual letters from the man who stalked me. He wrote of his sexual fantasies, of him watching me when I thought I was alone. I never found out who he was, but my mind raced with all these theories. My 100-year-old farmhouse was the backdrop for the story where the neighbors still say it’s haunted.

 

“Intelligence, as well as emotion, drives this novel. A taut thriller rich with lurid details yet also an evocation of vividly real and compelling characters.” –Mark Spencer, author of A Haunted Love Story, The Weary Motel, The Masked Demon, and Trespassers.

 

My Review:

If I had to sum up in one sentence my thoughts on this book: This book scared me to death!

 

I love thrillers, especially set in rural settings. There’s something frightening about an old farmhouse and someone trying to kill you; there’s nowhere to run and no one to hear your screams.

 

Debra and her husband, Greg, have just moved into a broken-down farmhouse. Everything is in need of repair and it’s rumored to be haunted. Greg doesn’t seem to care but Debra is paralyzed with fear. Debra’s afraid she’s inherited her mother’s schizophrenia. Tormented by childhood memories that won’t leave her alone, Debra looks to Greg for support.

 

After they’ve settled in, Debra becomes friends with her nearest neighbor, Julie. Julie is a seasoned farmwife and helps Debra settle in to being on a farm and so forth. Even though Julie is much older than young Debra, their views on life, husbands and family are similar.

 

One day, Julie shares a letter she’s received from an anonymous admirer with Debra. Julie’s uncomfortable and Debra understands how she feels. But when the letters keep coming, Julie’s husband (Kyle) vows to kill the stalker. All is not as it seems and soon everyone involved will be forced to deal with the consequences of the Anonymous letters.

 

This thriller is one of the scariest I’ve ever read. Filled with complex and well-developed characters, Anonymous will keep you guessing until the very end. Christine Benedict is a master of building suspense with nuances of the mentally unstable. She grabs ahold of the reader like literary best-sellers James Patterson and Harlan Coben and keeps you guessing until the very end.

 

For me, what made this one of the very best thrillers I’ve read are the characters and the scenery. She manages to evoke emotional attachment for each of the characters. This is a great feat because several of the characters I despised. But by the time the story ends, you see the characters for who they are and how their environment shaped them. Christine also describes in clear depiction how desolate and lonely it can be on a farm.

 

It’s no surprise to me that this book has won a lot of awards. If I had an award to give for the very best thriller that scared me senseless (had to read in the daytime with music playing), I would give it to Anonymous. Yes, it’s that good!

 

Favorite Character:

Debra. When we first meet Debra, she’s shy and frightened of her surroundings. But as time goes by and she shares more of herself (and her background) to Julie, she blossoms into a strong, confident woman who defends her friends and family to the death, if needs be. I loved her reaction to the bull.

Favorite Quote:

“Out of nowhere, a shape materialized on the living room wall. Luminous, its twisted silhouette etched in shadows, it inched its way along the wall. The heaviness of her heart, thumping, pulsing, jarred her every limb.”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Christine-Benedict/dp/194046613X

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/anonymous-christine-benedict/1118033610?ean=9781940466132

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20263470-anonymous?from_search=true&search_version=service

 

Christine Benedict

 

Author Biography:

Christine studied creative writing at Baldwin Wallace University and Cleveland State University. She has had the privilege of working with authors Karen Joy Fowler, Paula McLain, and Sarah Willis.

 

Her novel Anonymous won the 2016 Wishing Shelves Book Bronze Award, The 2015 Clue Award (Chanticleer Reviews), and The 2015 Eric Hoffer Book Award.

Anonymous was also nominated for The 2015 First Horizon Book Award, 2015 IAN Book Of The Year and 2015 Next Generation Indie Book Award.

Her short stories have been finalists for Perigee Publication for the Arts and The Fish Short Story Prize.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.authorchristinebenedict.com/

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AuthorChristineBenedict/?fref=ts

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/ChristineBened5

 

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Pages in the Wind by @SallyDeSmet is an Intense Psychological #Thriller! #bookpromo #books


Pages in the Wind_Sally Saylor De Smet

 

Pages in the Wind reaches inside the mind Emily Quinn, a young girl damaged by trauma, abuse, and family secrets. The book opens with Emily detained at the San Francisco County Jail for the first degree murder of her father. An aging, world-famous psychiatrist is hired to help find mitigating factors to spare her from California’s death penalty.

Can he help her?

The novel re-winds the young girl’s life from the age of eight to nineteen. The doctor quickly becomes sympathetic to Emily and her horrifying childhood. Of particular interest is her bizarre attachment to an old Bloomingdales box filled with drawings of girls she personifies. The doctor and patient develop a tender partnership, weaving through dark family secrets, the unexplained death of her twin sister, rejection by her mother and severe abuse from her father. Together, they sift through tragedy and loss leading to a shocking conclusion that neither saw coming.

Pages in the Wind is a book that dares you to reach inside yourself to understand how abuse and trauma can dramatically affect your identity.

Quotes from Pages in the Wind:

I rubbed my arm and gazed at the back door before trudging back to the chair. I felt deflated, like a helium balloon that flies high until one day, it’s just a blob of vinyl on the ground with all the air sucked out.

The heat wave was over along with my foolish dream of a new start with my father. Marine air mixed with light fog blanketed Laughlin High School, but it wasn’t thick enough to disguise the kids walking in pairs. The laughter was deafening, magnified by the chill in my soul. I gazed at their silhouettes and wondered why they were laughing. The spontaneity seemed unnatural to me. Of course, it wasn’t. I just didn’t know what free and easy felt like; I had to invent a character and fake a smile just to get through the door.

Confiding in him about my dismal life had been cathartic at the party but not here. At school, I wanted to play the role of a regular kid. Pudge knew about my miserable life and how it affected my self-esteem. But dear God, I didn’t want anyone else to know. I didn’t want to live in misery all the time. So I learned how to play bocce with the popular kids and pretended to enjoy myself. I laughed in the right places and mimicked the other girls. I pretended to be playful, engaging, and connected. The act was phony. I was as fake as a Godless prayer.

 

Professional Reviews of Pages in the Wind:

“A dark, stirring novel with a riveting final twist whose implications linger well after the last page.”  –– Kirkus Reviews

Five star Review ★★★★★ “Pages in the Wind, by Sally De Smet, is a page-turning psychological thriller that grabs the reader’s attention right from the start.

Emily Quinn is detained at the San Francisco County Jail after the brutal murder of her father. She has no memory of the murder or of her past. Her mother hires a world-renowned psychiatrist to help Emily recover her memories and to aid in her defense.

While under hypnosis Emily recovers countless painful revelations and family secrets. Can Emily uncover the whole truth?

The premise of the novel promises a dark and gritting story. And the author delivers. The beginning pages holds back a lot of information on the murder. The reader is aware that it occurred and that Emily will be going on trial, but the key information is unavailable, forcing the reader to fly through the pages to uncover what really happened.

The buildup to the finale is methodical. Along the way, De Smet leaves clues, some are easily recognizable, while others don’t jump off the page until the very end. It’s the hidden clues, obviously, that hold the key to the mystery and when it all comes together, the ending will not only shock most readers, it’ll disturb many and leave a lasting impression.

Human nature is many things, including dark. As the reader delves deeper and deeper into Emily’s childhood, it becomes clear that she was a victim. Yet, the knowledge that she murdered her own father makes it difficult for the reader to reconcile his or her feelings for Emily. This back and forth aids reader engagement and keeps the reader glued to the pages.

While the purpose of the meetings with the psychiatrist is to unearth the events leading up to the murder, what actually comes out of the sessions is beyond disturbing. This isn’t simply a case of child abuse and neglect. Those are factors, of course, but it’s also an excellent examination of how damaging family secrets, hidden agendas, lack of love, and controlling tendencies can completely rip apart a family.

Emily is undergoing treatment in 1966. The date is vital to the story. Back then, it was typical for teachers, neighbors, and family friends to look the other way. Emily becomes invisible to everyone and this perpetuates her belief that she really doesn’t matter. And it reinforces the idea that she should try at all costs to act normal. Reading her story is heartbreaking. But it’s more than that. It also points a finger at society. How could so much go on behind closed doors and no one noticed or said anything? The sad fact is, even today, this happens more than most would like to admit.

Pages in the Wind delves deep into psychological abuse making for uncomfortable reading at times. If you enjoy well-crafted thrillers that will make you cry, hold your breath, and ruminate, give this book a chance. There are plenty of twists and turns to keep you wanting more. This is the author’s first book. Keep an eye on her. She has talent and more than likely the next book will be even better.” 5 stars ★★★★★

 

Buy Links:

Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Pages-Wind-Sally-De-Smet-ebook/dp/B015914TVA

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26217254-pages-in-the-wind

 

 

Sally Saylor

 

Author Biography:

Sally De Smet was born in Nashville, Tennessee but lived in many areas as the daughter of a Naval officer. Her father told her at a young age that she should be a psychologist because of her compassion and listening skills. She lost her father at a young age and decided to study literature, but she never forgot his advice. Her writing explores human emotion while weaving a story full of intrigue and mystery. Her latest book, PAGES IN THE WIND, explores the role of abuse and trauma on the shaping of identity. Her storytelling skills have been recognized by the psychiatric community and educators–blending psychology and fiction in exciting and thought provoking stories. Expect the unexpected!

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://sallysaylor.com/

Twitter https://twitter.com/sallydesmet

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pagesinthewind/

Tumblr http://windsongdreamer.tumblr.com/

From a Poison Pen by @BPSmythe is a 5+ Star Collection! #bookreview #thriller #macabre


From a Poison Pen

 

Title: From a Poison Pen: A Collection of Macabre Short Stories

Author: B. P. Smythe

Genre: Horror, Thriller, Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

What happens when a member of the Hitler youth ends up in a concentration camp? How does a beach side cocktail get in the way the way of one woman’s scheming? What leads a teenage girl to rain down fire and brimstone?

 

This collection of dark, humorous and macabre tales explores the disturbing side of human nature.

 

From a Poison Pen is the first book in a trilogy of collected short stories by B. P. Smythe.

 

From a Poison Pen teaser

 

My Review:

A 10 part macabre mystery collection?  I have read many a short story collection but this one stands out as one of the best.  Smythe has a gift for revenge writing and a really solid grasp of the poetically ironic.  I will post as part of this my reviews of each story in turn with individual ratings.  Overall this is a fabulous book and is 5+ Stars.

 

The Individual Stories:

 

  1. Constricted – I didn’t totally enjoy the first one. The Hubby in the story was too much a jerk for me to enjoy.  The surprise ending was a touch predictable but the snake in the end was a nice touch.  6/10

 

  1. The White Room – I was drawn right in with the ‘Charade’ and I did get a little lost but the story ending well, I was laughing and couldn’t help cheering on Charlotte. Great story. 9/10

 

  1. Mint Imperials – The weakest story of the book, I found it hard to read and I couldn’t really get on board with the main character. It was an excellent take on a Hitchcockian horror idea. If you liked Psycho you will love this one. 6/10

 

  1. The Letter – Brilliant, Superb Finish, Gripping, couldn’t stop turning the pages. 15/10

 

  1. Abigail’s Closet – Beautifully written, Justice done is Justice that is sweet. Made me laugh out loud. 20/10.

 

  1. Girls of BDM – Terrific, excellent writing. Perfect and beautiful portrayal of true justice. 20/10. I just LOVED the ending.

 

  1. Love Me Do – Interesting, well written but would have been better if Mariam had killed her. 7/10

 

  1. Bath Night – Readable, engaging, had an odd twist that lost me a bit in the end. 7/10

 

  1. Lover’s Leap – Coulda been titled Crime Doesn’t Pay or Greed Always Kills. or Pay the Badman. A bit long winded but an interesting turn in the end. 8/10

 

  1. We’ll Meet Again – Amazing Story, Brilliant. Not at all macabre. The author has a deft touch when it comes to writing war stories. The best of them all and could easily be a full length novel. 25/10.

 

I highly recommend this book to everyone.  Again, it’s 5+ stars.

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US http://www.amazon.com/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE/

 

Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE/

 

B. P. Smythe

 

Author Biography:

 

I studied engineering at Carshalton College and eventually became a member of the Institute of Quality Assurance.

My engineering career took on many roles including toolmaking and being a technical writer for an artificial limb manufacturer. However, I’ve always enjoyed putting pen to paper while raising quality manuals and writing reports. I also write tennis articles for my local county magazine and relax reading crime and horror fiction. This, coupled with my technical writing career, partly influenced my transition into creative writing.

 

Wanting to expand my writing knowledge, I obtained a Level 3 / NCFE Certificate / PI410 creative writing diploma.

 

Sow And You Shall Reap – http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/145677171X is my first self- published novel. However, I have submitted numerous short stories for internet competitions including, winning £100 as first prize for my A Rose Without a Thorn for the http://www.spinetinglerspublishing online magazine and winning £50 first prize for my We’ll Meet Again in the http://dark-places.co.uk online magazine.

 

Two of my other short stories, Love Me Do and My Secret Place, have also been published in the printed Litro Magazine – Issue 140 – ISBN 978-0-9554245-5-7 http://www.litro.co.uk/2015/02/litro-140-diaries/

 

Near the end of 2015 I fortunately obtained a three book deal contract with Bloodhound Books http://www.bloodhoundbooks.com to publish a trilogy of macabre/thriller collected short stories. My first book titled – ‘From a Poison Pen’ is the first book of the trilogy and highlights from the stories – What happens when a member of the Hitler youth ends up in a concentration camp? How does a beach side cocktail get in the way the way of one woman’s scheming? What leads a teenage girl to reign down fire and brimstone? When a doctor buries his mistake, can he get away with it?

 

This collection of dark, humorous and macabre tales explores the disturbing side of human nature.

 

To purchase ‘From a Poison Pen’ Go to amazon.co.uk for the Kindle and paperback editions…

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE

 

Favourite books:

The Shining by Stephen King

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

Psycho by Robert Bloch

 

Other links to B.P.Smythe for his books – go to:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Poison-Pen-collection-macabre-stories-ebook/dp/B01BKWT4EE

http://www.amazon.com/Sow-Shall-Reap-B-P-Smythe/dp/145677171X

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12044547-sow-and-you-shall-reap

http://authorsonshow.com/2011/09/18/contest-entries/

http://www.authorsden.com/barrysmythe

 

Sow and You Shall Reap

by B P Smythe. available COPIES on Amazon Kindle and paperback. Isbn:9781456771713

 

Contact info:

B.P.Smythe

40 Saint Margaret’s Avenue,

North Cheam, Surrey.

SM3 9TT

 

e.mail: barrysmythe@hotmail.com

 

Social Media Links:

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5043570.B_P_Smythe

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/BPSmythe

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N