Friday, February 24, 2017

Mental Torture and Gnomebody's Business by James P. McDonald

Women in Horror Presents:


James P. McDonald

Mental Torture and Gnomebody’s Business


James is a business and technology consultant, fiction and non-fic author, technology and futurist speaker.

Torture is always a difficult topic to decide how to use it and present it. My personal interests tend to go towards mental torture, even in scenes where some sort of physical abuse is happening. In one of my novellas, “Gnomebody’s Business” (https://www.amazon.com/Gnomebodys-Business-Longbow-Initiative-Novella-ebook/dp/B016XI574G) it’s the story about a relatively new agent being pulled into the world of gods, monsters and the supernatural. She also plays heavily in the “Home Summonings” Series.

This is a very tongue in cheek murder mystery. The idea is that someone is killing gnomes and turning them into garden statues.

But in the story, consider these ideas. She is a young female agent on her first solo case. One of the first things that happens is that to do the investigation, she’s shrunk down to their size. In terms of the story, this means she’s stripped naked, her weapons are too large for her to use, and she’s dropped into a strange world. All without any warning.

Now an outsider, and the clothes and tools she’s given really aren’t all that useful compared to the world to which she’s accustomed, all she has to rely on is herself, her skills, her training, and her wits. And all of this before she even starts to do her job.

Most of my major characters have tortured souls of one sort or another, if they have one. And if it isn’t at the start, I like to see where they break. And how they come out the other side.

So often, we see torture as being strapped to a table, probed with electrodes, sexual assault, physical assault, etc. If you study the aftermath of survivors, physical scars tend to be nothing more than reminders. It’s how our minds cope, and how we recover. I don’t believe in an act of torture as titillation or just to move the story along.

It has to help shape the character and the story. And typically, when I do it, it’s also about whether or not they chose to recover, or decide to celebrate and live in their pain.

As an aside, last year I was a contributor to “Hold On To The Light” which is over 100 Sci-Fi and fantasy authors on PTSD, depression, suicide and mental health. I’d suggest checking it out. https://holdontothelight.com/

GIVEAWAY: Soon to be released are new covers for Books 1-3 in the Home Summoning Series, and an omnibus version. Anyone who signs up on my mailing list or sends me an e-mail with "Women in Horror" will get a free eBook version of Book 1!

Website:
http://www.jim-mcdonald.net
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/James-McDonald/e/B00JF5N2EW
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jimmacauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JimMacAuth

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Goddess Fish Presents: The Adventures of Grant Scotland by Dan McClure

The Adventures of Grant Scotland
by Dan McClure


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GENRE:  Fantasy

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BLURBS:

Spy for a Dead Empire (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book One)

AELFA, THE GRAND CAPITAL of the once mighty Aelfan Empire, has fallen. Barbarian war parties and nomadic tribes harass the retreating and broken legions that once overawed them. All that stands against them now is the city of Zyren, the last bastion of Aelfan rule.


Acting as a spy for Zyren is Grant Scotland, a man leading a double life because his own had been taken away from him by the very people he serves. An unwilling recruit into the business of clandestine missions and deceit, he searches for anything real to cling to as the world around him devolves into insanity. And when an old friend shows up asking him to help save his family by delivering a mysterious book to a shadowy figure, Grant's two lives collide and he is thrust into an even stranger world than he had known; one where ancient magic is wielded by deadly players who compete against one another for a prize greater than simply the rotting carcass of a dead empire.


Spy for a Troubled King (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Two)


AMONG THE ASHES of the mighty Aelfan Empire, the House of Gregyan seeks to forge a new kingdom—one where both Huthan and Aelfan alike can prosper. But old prejudices and ancient traditions and an exiled enemy threaten the peace. Caught between compassion for his home and allegiance to his fallen empire, Grant Scotland finds himself trapped in the turbulent machinations of enemies and friends. As he works to uncover mysteries about his father’s treachery and confront new threats to his future, he moves perilously close to revealing his identity and losing everything.



Spy for a Wayward Daughter (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Three)


AS THE GREGYANS MARCH TO WAR and his handler takes a trip to Zyren, Grant Scotland, spy errant of the Aelfan Empire, gets ready to pursue a lead on finding a man who might be able to tell him the truth about his father's treason. Old friends, new enemies and hidden dangers soon confront him on his quest, but when he enters the dark world of another family's intrigue, he finds that not even the frontiers of the Aelfan Empire are far enough away to escape the dangers of fortune and fate.


The Unlikely Spy (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Volume One)

The Adventures of Grant Scotland series is an entertaining mix of fantasy, mystery and espionage featuring a hero whose many faults provide almost as much challenge to him as the formidable obstacles he must face as he attempts to impose sanity upon a world rapidly descending into chaos. Collected in this volume are the first three books in the series: Spy for a Dead Empire, Spy for a Troubled King and Spy for a Wayward Daughter.


Spy for a Greedy Villain (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Four)

RACIAL TENSIONS IN AELFA simmer and threaten to boil over when the harbormaster is found dead and the Huthan oppressors threaten to crack down in the Lower Docks. As Grant Scotland finds more questions than answers in the journals of Berthul Magnussen about his father’s treachery, he is drawn into a murder investigation, a kidnapping plot and the nefarious machinations of the city’s biggest crime lord—Mr. Quinn. In order to stop Quinn’s plans and save the city from being thrown into open revolt, Grant prepares to take his biggest gamble yet.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Excerpt:

Spy for a Wayward Daughter (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Three)

Her cool gray blue eyes studied me and I might have sucked in my gut, but I couldn't be sure. I was too busy trying to remember how to form complete sentences.

"Good afternoon . . . Uh, I'm afraid you have me at a disadvantage," I finally managed to say.

"Marissa. Marissa Magnussen. Berthul is my husband." Her voice matched her dress: smooth and inviting.

"Pleasure to meet you, Mrs. Magnussen."

"Please, call me Marissa. Won't you sit down?" She gestured at a nearby divan and I dutifully sat on it. "Would you like a drink?"

"I suppose I would. Yes."

"I think Bertie has some Macforth Glyn here," she said as she pushed away from the desk and walked across the room to a sideboard and began fixing drinks. The drink cabinet was on the opposite side of the room from where I was sitting and I was treated to a nice view of Marissa's backside. The dress was backless, but Marissa's body certainly wasn't. I spent so much time contemplating how the curves that met at the base of her spine warranted closer inspection that she had to ask me twice if whiskey was acceptable. I think I answered yes, but I'm not sure in what language.

A smile briefly played across her lips as she brought the drinks over, handed me one and then sat next to me on the sofa. When she crossed her legs, I began to feel tense, but not in an altogether unpleasant way.

"So . . . Is Mr. Magnussen here?" My voice didn't quaver at all. I was becoming a man at last.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:


Writing stories infused with the smoky charisma of classic film noir mixed with the pulse-pounding excitement of adventure fantasy and the cagey class of suspenseful espionage, Dan McClure brought the best parts of all of our most cherished pulp together and added his own signature brand of wit. He currently lives, writes and works in and around beautiful and historic Arlington, Massachusetts.

I can be reached at
dmcclure17@hotmail.com.

Follow me on Twitter at
https://twitter.com/DMcClure17

Like Grant Scotland on Facebook at
https://www.facebook.com/grantscotlandseries

Sign up for my newsletter on my blog at
https://dmcclure17.wordpress.com/

Visit my Amazon Author page at
http://www.amazon.com/Dan-McClure/e/B00JUNYTZA

Buy Link: Amazon – See below for sale dates on the books

https://www.amazon.com/Adventures-Grant-Scotland-Book/dp/B01M5JG2W9/ref=sr_1_3

KINDLE COUNTDOWN SALE DATES:
Spy for a Greedy Villain (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Four):
Kindle Countdown Deal
1/4 - 1/7 @ $0.99
1/7 - 1/11 @ $1.99


Spy for a Dead Empire (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book One):
Kindle Countdown Deal
1/11 - 1/14 @ $0.99
1/14 - 1/18 @ $1.99


Spy for a Troubled King (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Two):
Kindle Countdown Deal
1/18 - 1/21 @ $0.99
1/21 - 1/25 @ $1.99


Spy for a Wayward Daughter (Adventures of Grant Scotland, Book Three):
Kindle Countdown Deal
1/25 - 1/28 @ $0.99

1/28 - 2/1 @ $1.99
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Book Review: Hitler in Argentina

This book is about a spy who claims that he transported Martin Bormann to Argentina.  Hitler was also transported to the same region where many Nazis lived out their days.  Supposedly Juan Peron knew all about it and kept his mouth shut for money.  
My Review: The book had many typos and grammar errors in the beginning, but eventually smoothed out into a great read.  I believe Hitler got away because his body was "burned" and then many said it was the body of a woman.  I also heard the dental records didn't match.  Supposedly Eva got away too.  I guess my biggest question is this-why didn't the US go down to Argentina if so many people knew where Hitler was living?  There is a great deal of German influence in parts of Argentina.  I know the US snagged many of Hitler's scientists, but to go along with his escape is very odd.  Did they want a 4th Reich?  Great read for history buffs.  Author loaded it up with pics, maps, witness accounts, and original documents. 5/5 Stars.  I read it as a reference for my sequel to The Best Seller.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Goddess Fish Presents: Meredith Schorr Tour-Just Friends with Benefits

Meredith Schorr Tour
by Meredith Schorr


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GENRE: Romantic Comedy

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Just Friends With Benefits
When a friend urges Stephanie Cohen not to put all her eggs in one bastard, the advice falls on deaf ears. Stephanie’s college crush on Craig Hille has been awakened thirteen years later as if soaked in a can of Red Bull, and she is determined not to let the guy who got away once, get away twice.

Stephanie, a thirty-two-year-old paralegal from Washington, D.C., is a seventies and eighties television trivia buff who can recite the starting lineup of the New York Yankees and go beer for beer with the guys. And despite her failure to get married and pro-create prior to entering her thirties, she has so far managed to keep her overbearing mother from sticking her head in the oven. Just Friends with Benefits is the humorous story of Stephanie’s pursuit of love, her adventures in friendship, and her journey to discover what really matters.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Excerpt:


"How did you end things?”

“He stayed over. I asked if he wanted to go out again the next night, but he had to work late. He did tell me to convince my firm to send me back soon though. I even worked a possible transfer to the New York City office into conversation with some of the partners just in case.”

Suzanne narrowed her eyes. “Don’t you think you’re getting ahead of yourself?”

“I have no intention of relocating now, but…” I smiled sheepishly. “You never know.”

She exhaled loudly. “This all sounds great, but please manage your expectations. Before you put in for a transfer, make sure you’re on the same page. Have you heard from him since you’ve been back?”

“No, but Eric and Jess are having a New Year’s Eve party at their house in Philadelphia. He was invited and I’m praying he’ll be there so we can hang out again. I know hooking up once does not a relationship make, but if it happens a second time, it means our interest is mutual and we can take it from there. Right?” I desperately wanted Suzanne to share my enthusiasm. 

Tapping her perfectly manicured pointer finger on the table, Suzanne said, “You know what I always say?”

I bit my lip. “What’s that?”

“Don’t put all your eggs in one bastard.”



AUTHOR Bio and Links:

A born-and-bred New Yorker, Meredith Schorr discovered her passion for writing when she began to enjoy drafting work-related emails way more than she was probably supposed to. After trying her hand penning children’s stories and blogging her personal experiences, Meredith found her calling writing chick lit and humorous women’s fiction. She secures much inspiration from her day job as a hardworking trademark paralegal and her still-single (but looking) status. Meredith is a loyal New York Yankees fan, an avid runner, and an unashamed television addict. To learn more, visit her at www.meredithschorr.com.


Social media:

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/MeredithSchorrAuthor/
Twitter - https://twitter.com/MeredithSchorr
Website: www.meredithschorr.com

Buy Links:

Just Friends With Benefits

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Just-Friends-Benefits-Meredith-Schorr-ebook/dp/B01N8RTCJ2/ref=pd_sbs_351_4

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/au/author/meredith-schorr/id562888020?mt=11

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/just-friends-with-benefits-meredith-schorr/1110025419

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/just-friends-with-benefits

A State of Jane

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/State-Jane-Meredith-Schorr-ebook/dp/B01N52WTXY/ref=sr_1_6

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-state-of-jane-meredith-schorr/1112799844?

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/au/author/meredith-schorr/id562888020?mt=11

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/a-state-of-jane-1

How Do You Know?

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/How-You-Know-Meredith-Schorr-ebook/dp/B01N2NDQ5O/ref=sr_1_5

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/how-do-you-know-meredith-schorr/1120809409

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/au/author/meredith-schorr/id562888020?mt=11

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/how-do-you-know-5



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Meredth will be awarding a $20 Sephora Giftcard to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Book Review: When Animals Attack-70 Horror Movies

When Animals Attack is a collection of in-depth essays written about horror movies with animals.  I had seen some of the movies chosen by the book's editor such as Jaws, Anaconda, Arachnophobia, Cujo, Lake Placid, and Snakes on a Plane.  Most of the movies in the book I had not seen.  There was a surge of essays written about sharks that didn't sound too interesting.  I wasn't a fan of Jaws.  The remainder of the movies sound awesome.
Some of the movies that are now on my 'must-see' list include Bryan Schuessler's essay on Pig Hunt.  He compares the movie to Razorback.  It's about a group of young people who go hunting for wild pigs.  It has won several awards.  Another movie that sounds intriguing is David Royce's essay on the movie Willard.  It's about a man who gets pushed around his whole life and then gets his revenge with the help of some rats.  J. Luis Rivera's White Dog is a movie about how dogs are trained to attack African Americans.  This movie sounds both horrifying and thought-provoking about racism in America.  

My Review: I recommend this book to all horror movie lovers.  It was a quick, fun read that makes me want to go to the video rental store.  The writing was great as were the movies that were highlighted.  5/5 Stars.


Friday, February 10, 2017

XPresso Book Tours Presents: PNR, Urban Fantasy and Dystopian Party

Welcome to the PNR, Urban Fantasy & Dystopian Party!
This giveaway is brought to you by 22 fabulous Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, and Dystopian authors!In this giveaway, EVERYONE who enters will win TWENTY-TWO FREE – EXCLUSIVE – ebooks by the sponsoring authors (to be delivered at the conclusion of the giveaway), and one GRAND PRIZE winner will also receive a $1000 Amazon Gift Card! The Winner will be announced on April 1st at our Facebook Event. The winner will also receive an email directly.
There will ALSO be other prizes and giveaways happening at that event between now and our Grand Prize announcement! So make sure you mark yourself as attending so you don’t miss those great opportunities to win more prizes and snag more freebies!
Here's a sneak peek from one of the sponsors:
Discern - an award-winning and bestselling urban fantasy novel by Andrea Pearson
Nicole put her things down, not wanting anything to be in her hands when she picked up the disgusting book. She reached for it, but hesitated. Already, she could sense warmth coming from the leather cover, and she wasn’t even touching it. Its magical pulses were different from the other items—they seemed to drip off the book like sweat.
Nicole hesitated, but wasn’t sure why. It wasn’t as if something bad would happen, right? She took a deep breath and placed her hands on the book. It shivered under her touch and she cringed, pulling back. The sensation of warm leather made her flesh crawl, and she rubbed her hands and arms on her jeans, trying to get the feeling to go away.
Come on, Nicole. Don’t wimp out.
Without letting herself think about it, she picked up the book and lifted the cover.
A wind rushed over her, blowing her hair back, roaring in her ears. She caught a brief whiff of tobacco smoke before the surge of air reversed and sucked the breath out of her lungs, making her gasp.
The floor under her quaked. The book vibrated. The leather on the cover moved, muscles beneath it flexing. Nicole tried to drop the book, but couldn’t. She was unable to control her hands or fingers. They clenched so tightly, they ached. A shadow covered the pages of the book, preventing her from reading.
What was going on? She gasped again, trying to breathe against the strong wind. She felt someone touch her shoulder, but she couldn’t move. Her fingers still clung to the book. The shadow on the pages shifted, roiled, and turned toward her, the brief outline of a face visible. It watched her for several moments.
Nicole . . .
The voice was soft, deep. A strange yearning inside her made her want to read the book, to understand. To join the owner of the voice, though she didn’t know where or what he was.
The wind slowed to a gentle and familiar caress across her cheek. Familiar?
Then suddenly, it all stopped. The book fell from her hands and slammed itself shut. She backed away, her arms, legs—everything—shaking.
“What happened?” Professor Coolidge asked next to her, making her jump.
“I—I don’t know.” Nicole tried to smooth her hair, but her hands shook too much. She tucked them under her arms. “It said my name . . . and there was a shadow. In-inside it.”
Coolidge lifted the leather book. His mouth popped open in surprise. “You’ve activated a force within it—something alive.” He looked at her, fear and worry on his face. “How did you do that?”
Nicole shook her head. “I don’t know,” she repeated.
Professor Coolidge put the book back on the table. “I’m not sure what to say, other than the book is much more powerful than it used to be.” He peered at her, scrutinizing her. “And I’d love to know why it called to you, why you woke it up, when so many others have not.”
 


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Thursday, February 9, 2017

Goddess Fish Presents: 51 Love by Jeremy T. Ringfield


51 Love
by Jeremy T. Ringfield

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GENRE: New Adult Contemporary Romantic Suspense

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BLURB:

This story is about Abram, a hopeless romantic who enrolls into college and begins leaving love notes for the girl, Jec, who works at the front desk of his student apartments. About why they know each other when neither have even met. That's right, she had seen his face only two weeks earlier, when he tossed his book bag in the middle of the street, holding up traffic like a mad homeless man. But what she doesn't know is that just before he came to grab his keys to move in, the handsome albeit strange eyes and the person they belong to had just been released from the county jail.

The jail cell talk without any cameras around to record make his last 51 minutes in the pen with a sketchy bunkmate a do or die conversation that may explain why he became homeless, why he wrote the love letters in the first place, and if both were random at all.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Excerpt:

It is the guy from the fire pit of whom Bobby was just joking about that is now approaching the front desk where I sit, and my heart rate begins to decrease as I feel the baritone boomp-boomp in my chest getting slower. But I cannot not look away, for he looks as if he got ran over by a train this morning from this closer view and I am not sure what is about to happen next.

I think, have we not already asked what of vanity is so serious? Or is our ultra-modern scientific understanding unresponsive to the inward call of good will? Does it need a new face?

But there is something underneath the wreckage that is dark, and handsome. I’ve got a secret thing for bad boys, and this one looks like just the right amount of danger.

I inhale a deep slow breath of air just before he begins to speak.

“May I ask for the keys of the apartment I am renting please? Here is my check. My name is Abram Wedger and I am two weeks late from my move-in date.”

I let out a long slow breath.

He is gazing directly into my eyes and for a brief moment I felt I knew.

“Of course” I tell him, and then proceed to retrieve the keys to his apartment in the file cabinet. As I turn in my chair, I clumsily knock the pen holder onto the floor, scattering a few pens and pencils. I blush, then kneel to the floor, placing a knee on the ground as I pick up the utensils that are nearer to my front foot. I hastily return the pen holder to the counter trying to save face before walking to the back office and realizing one of my earrings fell out of my ear.

What is wrong with me?

When I return, he is still standing in the exact same spot, facing in the exact same direction, as if stoic in time, space, and emotion. I swiftly pick my earring up off the floor, and place it into my ear lobe.
  

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Jeremy lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He grew up in the south Atlanta area, where he eventually earned a football scholarship to Duke University. After experiencing enough life to form his own opinions, he enjoys sharing some with friends, reading, watching fantasy riller and romance films, listening to music, and jogging when he is not writing. He writes new adult fiction.

Jeremy would love to hear from you. Follow him on Twitter @JTRingfield, friend him on Facebook, or visit his webpage at www.jeremytringfield.com


Additional Links:


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One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.



a Rafflecopter giveaway

  1. Character Interview + Where do ideas come from?
(I wanted to combine two of the blog topic ideas into one, since my character, Abram, is a writer):
Hi reader, whoever you are.
I don’t know why I am writing on this blog, but I wanted to take a break from walking outside all day so I stopped by the library to search the internet for a while. I guess this question was appealing, so I’ll share a few thoughts with you reader. I’m not sure where ideas come from, but I’m pretty sure it has a rap sheet. And a long one at that. Let me tell you, every time I come across these ideas, something is going down. Like last year for instance, I met this idea about writing a book. Right off the bat, it was strange as change sitting in the middle of a gas station parking lot. I don’t mean a spare coin or two here and there. I mean, a pile of change big enough to grab a handful. You know that someone had been there before, and its presence both begged my attention as well as shunned me to stop looking. On the one hand, I knew all too well what happens if I approached it. Nobody seemed to be looking so I figured it was safe to just nab a few without seeming so desperate. How wrong it would be to take from someone else’s stash had not occurred to me. I was too focused on what it is that I was saving all these random coins for. But never mind that. I took a few steps, got tunnel vision on the way the sunlight glistened off the metal, thought how I could make use of a few extra quarters, and suddenly that one person that always shows up out of nowhere was staring at my every move. I fake tripped on a flat piece of parking lot that I hoped looked uneven from the bystander’s view to save face. Did you just see that on the ground (wink wink)? Of course I wasn’t grabbing that five dollars and twenty-five cents worth looking pile of change.
                So I turned around and heard the voice before I connected the face with the origin of the oratory. “Did you want something to eat? I can buy you something from inside.” Almost bumping into her made my eyes close involuntarily as a thought erupted its way to the surface of my mind.
                “Listen you crazy buh-buh, ugh!” – Thud!

And then my eyes opened.
 Her beauty was as genuinely pure as the gesture, and I could not have been more embarrassed at the same time for being so wrong about how real I played that stumble off. The homelessness of my attire didn’t even give my fake tripping act a chance to conceal my motivations for being so close to those coins. But if meeting her is like two wrongs not making a right, I’d be happy if this gets worse. Real worse. It turns out that the bad history of these ideas quickly lead to the most wondrous encounters, strange yes, but a beautiful beginning that I never saw coming. I wish I could say the same for my rap sheet. I replied without revealing anything that might give me away, “You sure? I mean, thank you. I’d be grateful if you don’t mind. ” I’d tell you more about what happened to her, reader, but the library is closing and the computers are about to shut down. See ya.


-Abram 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

XPresso Book Tours Presents: Ares Road by James L. Weaver


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.
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.

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