Tag Archive | thriller

Stories Untold by Leslie Wolfe

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Title: Stories Untold
Author: Leslie Wolfe
Genre: Thriller, Suspense

A Gripping, Suspenseful Thriller

SU-Full_400x600Can a psychologist, still grieving the loss of her husband, save a traumatized war veteran who is planning his own death? Stories Untold explores the devastation of loss, the struggle to find meaning in life, and the enduring power of love that transcends boundaries between past and future.

They’re both strong and fearless, determined, relentless.
He’s a decorated war veteran and he wants to die.
She’s a prominent psychologist and she won’t give up on him.

When a suicidal client seeks her help, Dr. Angela Blackwell cannot turn him away, despite the fact that he isn’t seeking the kind of help she normally provides her clients. The man, who won’t fully identify himself, wants the distinguished psychologist to stand witness after his planned death in six months’ time, ensuring his wife will not be charged as an accessory or be hindered from collecting the death benefit he carefully provisioned for her. He calls himself DJ and won’t willingly share anything about his past.

As Dr. Blackwell is struggling to reconstruct her own life after the loss of her husband, she recognizes his unusual request as a subconscious cry for help and embarks on a relentless effort to guide the reluctant stranger in uncovering the trauma that has permanently altered the course of his existence. Playing a deck of cards stacked high against her and rushing against time, she has no other option but to intervene, pushing the ethical boundaries of the doctor-client relationship and refusing to give up.

An astonishing, vibrant story of human strength and frailty, of love lost and love found, the Stories Untold saga will captivate as few stories ever do, with unexpected twists and turns, leaving a lasting memory ingrained into the essence of the reader’s being.

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Excerpt:

Anniversary

Dr. Angela Blackwell couldn’t bring herself to turn on the lights, although darkness had almost completely engulfed the living room, forcing her to abandon her reading glasses on top of the book lying open on the windowsill. In the deep twilight, she could still see the ocean waves foaming as they broke against the Pacifica shore, a good 200 feet below her terrace. Yearning for their soothing sound and the salty smell of the ocean breeze, she wrapped the cardigan tighter around her supple body and pulled open the terrace door.

She stopped in the doorframe and inhaled deeply, savoring the salty taste of the misty air as it touched her lips. Fog was rolling in from the sea in large clumps of restless cotton, soon to engulf the house in white silence, hiding the ocean view from her blurry eyes. She stepped outside and stood by the guardrail, keeping her gaze fixed on the horizon line, barely visible in the deepening crepuscule and the dense fog.


She closed her eyes and let herself feel the drizzle touch her face. Tiniest droplets of liquid chill she welcomed to take away the burning sensation in her forehead, to camouflage the tears that welled up in her eyes. After a while, the coldness of the mist reached her bones and sent a shiver down her spine. She shuddered and walked back inside, wiping the moisture off her face with the back of her hand.


She stopped at the fireplace and rubbed her hands in front of the dancing flames, pushing the sadness a little further from her heart. Seeing the bright colors of the lively fire, enjoying the dry warmth, after being outside, helped her chase the shadows away. When she was sure of herself again and felt confident her voice wouldn’t betray her, she grabbed her phone and dialed one of the only two starred numbers stored in her favorites list.


Waiting for Shelley to pick up, she put the phone on speaker and checked the time. It was late, almost eight-thirty, and that meant well past eleven at night on the East Coast. She knew her daughter well; if she’d gone to bed, her phone would be on silent, and she wouldn’t risk disturbing her sleep.

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Readers and Critics Talking About Leslie Wolfe Novels:

“Leslie Wolfe is now very much on my list of MUST READ AUTHORS and I can’t wait for the next book to be released”

“Characters you really can bond with and want to read more about. Too real and plausible not to keep you reading far too long after bed time!”

“Now this was a real smoker, really kept it moving, very well written. Guess I better find out if my wife is talking to me.”

“Leslie Wolfe just gets better and better.”

“This story has one of the best plots I’ve read in a long time.”

“From the beginning to the last page her novel manages to keep reader’s attention, delivering intrigue, thrill and suspense.”

“An impressive amount of suspense throughout.”

“As soon as I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down! Full of suspense and keeps you at the edge of your seat. I loved it!”

“As a long-time fan of Tom Clancy’s early works and Dan Brown’s techno-thrillers, it makes me proud to see a woman stepping so confidently into this male-dominated arena. Well done, Leslie.”

 

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About the Author:
Leslie WolfsBestselling author Leslie Wolfe is passionate about writing fiction, despite spending a significant number of years climbing the corporate ladder. Leaving the coveted world of boardrooms for the blissful peace of the Florida-based “Wolves’ den,” Leslie answers one true calling: writing.

Leslie’s novels break the mold of traditional thrillers. Fascinated by technology and psychology, Leslie brings extensive background and research in these fields that empower and add texture to a signature, multi-dimensional, engaging writing style.
Leslie released the first novel, Executive, in October 2011. It was very well received, including inquiries from Hollywood. Since then, Leslie published numerous novels and enjoyed growing success and recognition in the marketplace. Among Leslie’s most notable works, The Watson Girl (2017) was recognized for offering a unique insight into the mind of a serial killer and a rarely seen first person account of his actions, in a dramatic and intense procedural thriller.

A complete list of Leslie’s titles is available at http://wolfenovels.com/titles
Leslie enjoys engaging with readers every day and would love to hear from you.
Become an insider: gain early access to previews of Leslie’s new novels:

Website * Facebook * Twitter * Amazon * Goodreads

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What Readers Say About Leslie Wolfe:

“Leslie Wolfe has the talent that is comparable to the likes of a Tom Clancy or a Michael Crichton, or even James Patterson.” – Dennis Waller

“Wolfe keeps readers turning the pages…” – Kirkus Reviews

“Leslie Wolfe knows how to blend advanced technological data with powerfully written human behavior responses and the result is a novel that few will want to put down once the story begins.” – Grady Harp

“Verdict: A phenomenal novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I highly recommend it!” – KWNY Publicity 

 

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Vengeance by Belle Ami

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Title: Vengeance
Author: Belle Ami
Series: Tip of the Spear Book 2
Genre: Romance, Thriller, Suspense
Publisher: Hartwood Publishing
Publication Date: September 12, 2017

A Mossad agent will do anything to rescue his kidnapped wife and to stop a terrorist plot to blow up a nuclear facility.

 
vengeanceVengeance is a sexy thriller teeming with romantic suspense. A well-researched tale, scary in its possibility, packed with excitement, it will leave you breathlessly turning pages.

Layla Wallace Hassani is living her dream, curating a major art exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. She has it all, a fabulous career, the perfect marriage and the perfect child. She’s madly in love with her husband Cyrus Hassani, a Mossad agent, and lives in Tel Aviv with their four-year-old daughter Cerise. Her life takes a disastrous turn when she’s kidnapped by Iranian terrorists during the bombing of a restaurant in Manhattan. Chained to a bed at a remote location, Layla is a pawn in a deadly game. She’s the bait to lure Cyrus to his death.

Driven by vengeance and a love that knows no bounds, Cyrus will do anything to rescue his wife and stop the terrorist’s plot to blow up a nuclear facility. Teaming up with the FBI he’s the only man capable of stopping a bombing that would result in the deaths of millions of people. Filled with vengeance, stopping the terrorists is his goal, but saving Layla is his mission.

Layla knows her Superman, Cyrus, is coming to save her. She also knows, unbeknownst to him, that by doing so it will mean the death of their child. Caught in a mousetrap, she struggles to find a way out of her deadly situation and to fend off the sexual advances of the kidnapper terrorist who’s fallen in love with her.

Layla must make a choice, save her child or sacrifice herself and her marriage. The clock is ticking.

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Excerpt:

Twelve a.m.

The persistent ring of a cell phone wrenched him awake. Their bodies were entangled in the sheets with Cass’ cheek pressed against his chest. He reached blindly for the phone. With his eyes closed, he brought it to his ear, and answered with a groggy, “Hello.”


A half-beat of silence. “Where the hell is Agent Saladino?”


Shit, we’re fucked. He looked at the phone, cringing when he saw the initials, JC. “Hold on, sir. I’ll get her.”


“Is that you, Agent Weiss? Why are you answering Cassandra’s phone?”


He struggled to find a reply. “Uh, I’m sorry, sir. I thought it was mine. We were just going over some case work, and Cass went to make some coffee. Both our phones were on the table, and I grabbed it by accident.” He tried to make light of the odd hour, filling the pause with a chuckle. “You know how she is? She’s in work mode twenty-four-seven.” He wondered if the director would buy his cock-and-bull story.


“At midnight? Agent Weiss, you need to put your foot down, or she’ll wear you out. Both of you need to learn to relax when you’re not on duty. Not that you’re going to be seeing any downtime anytime soon. Get Cassandra, now. We’ve got a problem, and I want you both on it.”


David covered the phone with his hand as he nudged Cass.


“What is it?” She punched him on the arm.


“It’s the director,” he whispered. “I screwed up. I thought it was my phone, but it was yours.”


Cass bolted upright and grabbed the phone from his hand. “Yes, sir, what’s up?” Cass listened. “Yes, sir, coffee. It won’t happen again.” She scrunched her eyes closed, this time for what David thought to be a long time. “We’ll leave immediately, sir. I’ll call you when we’re in the air.” She hung up.


“So, what’s up?”


Cass ran her hands through her hair. “A restaurant’s been blown up in Manhattan. The initial report is over a hundred casualties.” She met his gaze, her eyes aflame with anger. “It looks like a terrorist attack. J.C. wants us on the case ASAP. You have a packed suitcase here, don’t you?”


“Yeah, one here and one at my place.”


“Good. A helicopter will be waiting on the roof at headquarters in forty-five minutes.” She wrapped her arms around his broad chest. “Another soft target. All of those innocent lives, gone in an instant. All the bad guys we stop, and it’s never enough. One gets through, and a hundred people die.”


“We’ll get them, baby.” He kissed her temple.


“I know. It’s just that they only have to be right once, but we have to be right all of the time.”


She broke from his embrace and turned on the television. The early reports were coming in, mostly speculation. Police had immediately cordoned the entire area off, and the media and civilians were being kept blocks away. “Worthless banter.” She turned the TV off and turned to David. “We’ll have plenty of time to bring ourselves up to speed on the helicopter.”


“I need to grab a shave and a shower before we leave.”


“Yeah, me too. We’ve got just enough time.”

»»•««

He shaved while Cass started her shower. He couldn’t help but watch her through the billowing steam as she washed. She was such a hot little package. Perfectly proportioned with sinewy curves, and the hardest ass he’d ever felt on a woman. She was a martial arts master; her size held no relation to her deadliness. Her bright red spiked hair reminded him of a rooster’s comb. Her skin—he had trouble controlling the urge to touch it when she was near him—was satiny and golden. She wasn’t close to being what he’d thought was his type. Even with the sparks that flew between them, he’d resisted. It had taken months for her to bed him, and even now he wasn’t sure who’d seduced whom? The only thing he was certain of was that he couldn’t get enough of her. Shaving with a hard-on, that’s a new one.

He watched her dry herself as he patted his face dry. “Cass, do you think the director suspects us?”


Cass dressed as she spoke. “I don’t know. He’s pretty savvy, but we’ve been a pretty successful team, and the director will always do what’s best for the agency. Right now his mind is on one thing only. An attack on US soil that should have been stopped. Somehow we failed, not just us but every anti-terrorist agency in the homeland and abroad.”


“There wasn’t a peep from social media. No leaks, nothing to indicate an attack was imminent.”


“That’s what worries me. These people are good. What if they’re planning another attack?”


“We’ll catch them, Cass. We’ll make them pay.”


“I know, but the reaction isn’t the same as prevention. We need to catch these animals before they murder again.”


“Sometimes bad things happen, babe, no matter how hard we try.”


She wrapped her arms around him and kissed him. “I’ll never accept that. I won’t rest until we get them.”


“Ditto, partner. Together we’re unstoppable.”


She smiled. “We’d better get a move on, or we’re going to be unstoppable and late.

 

Be sure to also check out the first book of the Tip of the Spear Series.

escapeEscape, a sexy romantic thriller that “what ifs?” a nuclearized Middle East.
When Harvard student, Layla Wallace and her Saudi boyfriend are kidnapped to Iran, a deep-cover Mossad agent is activated and given a mission. He’s ordered to either get Layla out of Iran, or if failing that—kill her.

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Author Bio:
belle amiBelle Ami writes romantic/suspense/thrillers with a teaspoon of sex. Escape (Tip of the Spear Book 1) is up for a RONE Award in 2018. Her latest is entitled Vengeance (Tip of the Spear Book 2) published by Hartwood Publishing. She lives in Southern California with her husband, two children, a horse named Cindy Crawford, and her brilliant Chihuahua, Giorgio Armani.

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Deadspeak 2 by Ruth Bainbridge

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Title:
Deadspeak 2
Series: Deadspeak Mysteries Book 2
Author: Ruth Bainbridge
Genre: Mystery/thriller

 
BookCover_DeadSpeak2Things look different when you’re dead.

It’s Halloween and a group of teens throw a party at Harbinger Falls’ most celebrated haunted estate. It’s all fun and games until a session with a Ouija board guides the partygoers to the body of a young girl hidden in the attic.

Detective Kimberly Trent is assigned the case and quickly discovers that all is not as it seems. First, there’s the connection between the death and a string of petnappings terrorizing the neighborhood. Then there’s the suicide note that only leaves more questions than answers. A visit from Kimberly’s ghostly friend Griff Lindon sheds an unwelcome light. It seems she’s had a run in with the newly deceased who tells her she’s been murdered.

This is the second in The Deadspeak Mysteries. The entries are meant to be read in sequential order and do not standalone. In each book, you’ll find a new murder for Kimberly Trent to solve. You’ll also find the continuing search for who murdered Kim’s sister Elizabeth. Each book will take you closer and closer to finding out the identity of The Hex Killer, the serial killer who ended Elizabeth’s short life. It will also bring you to the heart of the evil that’s come back to life to wreak revenge.

Excerpt:

“This reminds me of when I was in summer camp and stayed up all night trying to contact the dead,” Julie Welch commented.

Mia or no Mia, the time had arrived and the Ouija board was placed in the center of one of the folding tables.


“You did that, Mrs. Welch?” Angie asked.


“Of course,” Julie confessed with a giggle. “I lived for those summers, and the camp counselors had no idea what we were up to. They only wondered why we were all so tired in the mornings.”


The atmosphere of the Halloween Party had changed. Ever since the announcement, things went from Party Central, to an eerie, expectant quiet. The music was turned off and the food lined up on the rented tables was bereft of pawing hands.


The six rested their fingers lightly on the planchette. “Remember: no cheating! Understood?” Mrs. Welch warned.


The participants nodded in agreement as the woman with the highlighted blonde hair inhaled deeply.


“Hello? Is there anyone with us?” Julie asked, starting off the questioning.


A soft scrape… and … movement! Infinitesimal at first, the planchette picked up speed.


Yes.


“What the—” Gen started. A loud moan interrupted the moment.


“Yes, I’m here,” a deep voice bellowed.


Fear spread quickly as attendees sprang up from their chairs and readied to run. Another unearthly groan penetrated the air. Angie latched on to Glenn’s hand.


Footsteps.


Someone was climbing the basement stairs.

 

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Author Bio:

AuthorPhoto_DeadSpeak2Born in the idyllic, sleepy town of Ithaca, NY, Ruth Bainbridge has been a lover of mysteries for her entire life.

Ever since a child, she has consumed detective stories at regular intervals, becoming enamored with all the superstars of crime. She loved nothing more than to match wits with the likes of Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Thomas Pitt, Lord Peter Wimsey, Richard Jury, and Edward X Delaney, becoming inspired by their brilliance. Hoping to emulate her writing idol’s achievements in dreaming up such characters, she started composing her own short stories.

However, life interfered with her plans of becoming the next hopeful to try a life of crime—on paper at least. Devoting herself to her marriage and the raising of four children, the empty nest syndrome gave her the impetus to return to her first love—murder.

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In Wolves’ Clothing by Greg Levin

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Title: In Wolves’ Clothing
Author: Greg Levin
Publication date: October 11th 2017
Genres: Adult, Psychological Thriller

 

IWCZero Slade is not a bad guy—he merely plays one when saving children’s lives.

During his seven years on a team fighting child sex trafficking, Zero’s become quite good at schmoozing with pimps, getting handcuffed by cops and pretending not to care about the Lost Girls he liberates. But the dangerous sting operations are starting to take their toll on his marriage and sanity. His affinity for prescription painkillers isn’t exactly helping matters.

When the youngest girl the team has ever rescued gets abducted from a safe house in Cambodia, Zero decides to risk everything to find her. His only shot is to go rogue—and sink deeper into the bowels of the trafficking world than he’s ever sunk.

It’s the biggest mission of his life. Trouble is, it’s almost certain death.

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Excerpt:(from Ch. 2)

Guadalajara.
The guys and I ogle the dozen or so pre-teen prostitutes being led into our villa by three slim, scowling men. Each of the men is wearing a different soccer jersey that looks the same. Each of the girls is wearing whatever discount-rack party dress the pimps forced them into. The room smells like Drakkar Noir and sweat mixed with Cotton Candy and fear. Some of the girls look at us and try to smile. The rest of them probably aren’t aware we exist.
We offer the girls some sodas as they plop onto couches and chairs in the huge open living room. Barrett says something silly in broken Spanish and several of the girls giggle. Even one of the pimps is smiling. I pour myself a glass of tequila and wink at a ten-year-old.
The trick to looking excited when children are presented to you for sex is to remember you are saving their lives. If you don’t look excited, the pimps will get suspicious. Show your anger and disgust, and you ruin everything.
I take a sip of tequila and grin at a child and would kill for an oxy. The one I ate an hour ago is losing its luster. But two on the job, that’s a no-no.
For help getting into character, think about the biggest douchebag frat guy you’ve ever met, imagine him with several million dollars, multiply his money and demeanor by ten, and then act like that guy. Right up until the cops remove your handcuffs and thank you.

 


“A truly original and enthralling novel. Levin’s blazing prose and acerbic wit capture the madness—and the humanity—of working undercover in the darkest corners.”

Radd Berrett, former Jump Team member, Operation Underground Railroad

 

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Author Bio:

Greg Levin is an award-winning author of contemporary fiction with a dark comedic tinge. He’s gone from being read merely by immediate family and friends to being read also by extended family and Facebook acquaintances.

Greg’s novel The Exit Man was optioned by Showtime for development into a TV series, and won a 2015 Independent Publisher Book Award (a.k.a., an “IPPY”). He earned a second IPPY with his next novel, Sick to Death, which Craig Clevenger (The Contortionist’s Handbook) called “a tour de force dark comedy.” Greg’s upcoming book, In Wolves’ Clothing, is due out October 2017 and is his most dangerous work yet. He wrote much of it during a ten-week-long workshop led by the great Chuck Palahniuk (author of Fight Club and lots of other books Greg sleeps with at night).

Greg resides with his wife, daughter and two cats in Austin, Texas. He is currently wanted by local authorities for refusing to say “y’all” or do the two-step.

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Q&A with Greg Levin:

You write about issues that most authors would tiptoe around. Care to comment on that?

Sure. I do it because there are already so many novels about vampires, zombies and wizards, and I don’t want to have to compete with them. Besides, it’s exciting to explore subversive and controversial topics. To go underground and get a little dirt on my pajamas while I’m sitting in the house writing. Also, I’ve never been big on tiptoeing. Sometimes it’s better to charge straight toward a dark or dangerous topic and see who flinches first.

And where does your dark sense of humor come from?

I guess you could say it’s a survival tactic. I don’t use dark humor to offend—I use it to defend. Humor is a magnificent weapon, one that, instead of destroying, keeps us from being destroyed. Nietzsche said, “We have art in order to not die of the truth.” I feel humor serves the same purpose. In fact, humor—when deftly wielded—is art.

What would you say is your greatest strength as a writer?

At the risk of sounding a tad redundant, I’d say it’s my ability to bring levity and humor to dark topics while simultaneously revealing the heart and humanity of my main characters. I love getting readers to root for a well-meaning sociopath or serial killer or just plain loser, and eliciting laughter and tears in the process.

Tell us a little about In Wolves’ Clothing.

It’s about a guy named Zero Slade who travels the world posing as a pedophile to help rescue victims of child sex trafficking. I’m not kidding, and the book is no joke. There are men and women in real life who carry out the kind of elaborate sting operations that Zero, along with his cohorts, carry out in the book.

In Wolves’ Clothing is definitely not a dark comedy like my previous two novels, however, there is an ample amount of subversive humor and comic relief in the story. But let me assure you, not once do I (or my characters) make light of the horrors of child sex trafficking. The humor in the book never comes at the expense of the Lost Girls. It comes from how my protagonist and his fellow undercover “pedophiles” cope with the harrowing missions—and the absurd role they must play in order for those missions to succeed.

So, while I geared the book to enthrall and entertain readers, I also I aimed to do right by all the victims of human trafficking—and all the women and men who’ve dedicated their lives to liberating and caring for those victims.

 

Nerve Damage by J.L. Meyers

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Title: Nerve Damage
Author: J.L. Meyers
Genre: Psychological Thriller

 
Nerve Damage Final_375x600A fatal car crash. The sole survivor. And the dark hooded stranger that wants her dead.

When a terrible accident—not accident—stole my parents’ lives, my whole perfect life changed. My memories are hazy, and there are scars on my wrists. I’ve been locked away for my own protection…until I prove my sanity, until I lie. There was no hooded figure on the road that day, no one standing over me as I lay paralyzed watching my parents burn.

I am Cassidy Lockheart…20-year-old orphan.

Determined to free my caged mind, I find myself far away on an unexpected trip to help return my forgotten past. The snow was part of my life before, but now it’s like a blank slate, until an avalanche changes everything. But I’m not alone. These other ‘lucky’ trip winners may not be the strangers they pretend to be. And my hooded attacker…I see him everywhere.

Is this real? Or delusion caused by head trauma?

Either way, I’m being watched. I can sense it. I can feel it. Someone is after me; maybe they’re after us all. The avalanche was no accident. It was staged to deliver us to this abandoned place. A place where the walls whisper dark secrets of a sinister past…a past no one can escape. Trapped, this snow won’t let up…it won’t let us leave. My lost memories hold clues, but they’re buried so deep, polluted and twisted in my every waking nightmare. What is real? I don’t have the answers. But I need them. Time is ticking and if I don’t figure this all out soon it will be too late.

The past is coming for us all…and it wants blood.

 
Warning – This book contains some graphic scenes that are only for an adult audience.
Psychological Thriller / Horror

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“Think of the tension of Silence of the Lambs combined with the horror of Carrie and you have Nerve Damage. This is a psychological thriller that won’t let you put it down, yet you are almost too scared to turn the page!”
Diane Richmond (devoted bookworm) ★★★★★

This chilling tale from J.L. Myers is a suspenseful and twisted addition to other great psychological thrillers from the likes of Sarah A. Denzil, K.L. Slater, and Dot Hutchison.

 

Excerpt:

      I trudged along a scenic, tree-winding road that saw at most a few cars every hour. In gray jeans and a black hoodie, I blended into the dreary surroundings, just another shadow below the early morning ashen clouds.
      A deep ache settled in and I shrugged my clanking backpack higher once, twice, three times after a few more steps. My gloved hand on the strap kept the heavy load from sliding back down. My car was well out of reach now. Out of sight too, down over the steep drop-off to the right in an isolated parking lot no one used in these colder months of the year. Safe and hidden…until I needed it. The rain that fell was ignored, the crunch of wet gravel under my combat boots lost to the sway of wind-battered trees.
      Though I stared ahead, what I saw was not the hardening downpour or the flying of loose leaves. Instead, I saw a girl’s face. Young. Innocent. Twentyish with forest-green eyes and long, almost black hair. Her smile had been infectious and the words from her pretty mouth had set my course. “…Saturday morning. At the crack of dawn. My dad doesn’t believe in waiting for sunrise. Not when the whole day is waiting. That Kananaskis Trail…”
      Now I was here. Soon I’d be the one waiting.
      Right before a hairpin bend on this less-traveled road, my booted strides stopped. Anticipation filled me with a flood of warmth, but a deep breath of brisk air tightened my chest. I ignored the discomfort as raindrops trickled down my brow and cheeks. After days, months, and years this was it. There was no turning back now. This was my only escape, my only way to make the past right.
Dropping my backpack with a clatter and quick stretch of my back, I bent over. A flash of cold metal came free, long like a chain but not as smooth. The long length jangled as I stretched it out over the asphalt and then the weedy grass beyond before tucking the end behind a bush.
      Road spikes.
      A quick jog delivered me back across the road and I reclaimed my lumpy backpack. Then I was back at the bush and crouching behind it. A quick grab and click cemented the scene as my Polaroid camera hummed out a happy snap. A memento. As I tucked the device back out of the rain, a set of headlights shone around a smooth bend back down the road and brought my head up.
      “Shit!” I spat from beneath my hood as an old sedan sailed too fast up the rain-slicked road. My gloved hands tugged the length of metal back just before the sedan’s tires could claim those sharp spikes. Heart pounding like a drum, I muttered as I watched the red taillights disappear around the bend. Wrong car. Then I ran out to string those spikes back in place. An approaching white glow had my hood snapping up to see another car coming.
      Right on time.
      Racing back over the road, I dove for cover behind the bush. The headlights of the approaching white Merc flashed on highs for two beats.
      I’d been spotted.
      And then the front tires hit the spikes. With a hiss of released air, traction was lost. The man driving yanked the steering wheel and anchored on the brakes, the tires barely squealing on the wet asphalt. But it was too late. The drenched road provided a slippery passage as the sedan fishtailed then spun, sliding sideways over the edge too fast to stop. It tipped on the sudden drop-off, tumbling guts over roof, guts over roof.
      The tall cypress tree that halted its descent with a deafening clap wasn’t a Godsend. Metal cried out as it curved around the tree, reshaping the driver’s side and shattering the windshield.
And then there was a moment of pure quiet, nothing but the sound of peaceful whooshing wind as the rain eased off.
      Tugging back the spikes and concealing them behind the bush, I hoisted up the backpack and unhurriedly made my way down the slippery path to the wreck. The next part to come was a means to an end. My anticipation lied in the aftermath but not in this act. And yet with each step, I felt nothing. No uncertainty. No regret. Those feelings I’d shed long ago. I’d had no choice.
      Reaching the wreckage, red was visible beneath the mud-caked windows. My backpack was dropped to gain a closer look. The middle-aged female in the front passenger side was out cold, with cuts that leaked blood down her face to her blouse. In the driver’s side, the man’s features were unrecognizable, covered in glossy red. There was a creak of movement. It wasn’t him. In the back, there she was, her perfect lips no longer smiling and dark bruising puffing up her pale face. With a blink of her lids over her bloodshot green eyes, she wasn’t dead.
      Unfortunate for her…she was coming around.
      I tugged the car’s back door open and reached in, taking hold of the young woman and dragging her out. She was pretty out of it, eyes dazed and lids twitching. She was injured too, with multiple cuts and bruises on her face and arms. A bump on her forehead was ballooning beneath the skin. Her feet trailed as I dragged her by her arms across the mushed-up ground.
      Then I noticed the object she somehow clutched in her tight fingers. A phone. Relieving her of the device once we were well out of reach, I positioned her to face the wreck.
      “Don’t worry. I’ve got you now.”
      My combats squelched through the mud back to the car, and with a lean over the dead man, a click sounded as I unlocked the fuel tank. Back around the Merc, I found the fuel lid open and unscrewed the cap. My black Zippo lighter came free of my pocket along with a long rag. A minute or so after soaking the rag and I was yards away, the Zippo’s flame fighting the wind and rain and losing.
      “Cassidy…” The woman still in the car—the young woman’s mother—was waking up. Still alive. She moved as her hand came up to her head. “Cas…talk to me.” She groaned, and then sucked air as she twisted to get a better view, seeing her husband and the empty back seat. “Cas!”
      The girl’s eyes fluttered then went wide. Her voice was a painful rasp. “Mom…”
      “Time to say goodbye.” There was a crunching scrape as the Zippo sparked back to life. The flame met the material’s end and I returned to the girl, turning to see the fire retreat.
      “Mom!” The girl’s voice was shrill, and she swayed as she scrambled to get up. Her eyes rolled like marbles, bringing her back down. And then it was too late. With a whoosh the soaked rag below the sedan ignited in a fiery ball, climbing up the metal walls and curving inside the dry cab. The woman’s shrieks cut through the dying rain as my camera immortalized this moment in time. But the sounds of her death faded all too fast, the fire taking her pain away. Taking her life away.
      As the girl I’d saved from the wreck whimpered, I readied what I needed before returning. Standing over her, the small boulder in my hands blocked the view of my face. The hefty weight of the rock returned that ache to my tired shoulders. “Don’t worry, Cassidy. This isn’t the end. I need your help…to bring them all to me.”

 
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About the Author:

512AuJqk08L._UX250_Jessica L Myers’ vivid imagination and quiet demeanor as a child led her to the imaginary worlds of books. Even at a young age, her love for the supernatural was prevalent, with her first loved books being R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps series. Following that she took an interest in other non-fantasy fiction, including Virginia C. Andrews series Flowers in the Attic.

In her teen years, Jessica spent many school hours writing poetry and dark short stories and took up sketching some of the terrifying things that came from the graphic night terrors she’d grown up with.

As an adult and after meeting the love of her life, Jessica got married and started a small construction business with her husband. With the birth of her son, Jessica suffered PPD and found escape in her books and their fantasy landscapes. It was at this time that her need to write flourished. In 2009 the decision was made and the first words to her New Adult Paranormal Romance novel What Lies Inside were written.

When Jessica isn’t immersed in writing about extraordinary characters with dangerous abilities and deadly obstacles to overcome, she likes to spend time with her two kids and husband, curl up with a good book, or watch anything and everything supernatural.

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Gone Daddy Gone by Cheryl Bradshaw

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 Title: Gone Daddy Gone
Series: Sloan Monroe Mysteries #7
Author: Cheryl Bradshaw
Genre: Crime Mystery, Thriller

From New York Times bestselling author Cheryl Bradshaw:

A single moment is about to change Sloane Monroe’s life forever …

ebook-2_400x600On an early winter morning, college student Shelby McCoy walks the quiet, snowy path back home. A tree branch snaps in the distance. Then another. A man is there with her, following close behind, whispering her name. She looks back, sees him gaining on her, and runs. Who is this man, and why is he carrying a gun?

*Can easily be read as a standalone!

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The man stood across from Bonnie and Hank’s hotel, watching everyone say goodbye. From the looks of things, Cade appeared to be returning to Wyoming, and Sloane would stay behind.
Good.
It would be much easier for him to divide and conquer this way.
He took one last drag on his cigarette and flicked it to the ground, stubbing it out with the bottom of his shoe. He thought about leaving, but he couldn’t tear his eyes away from Cade and Sloane, holding hands, standing together beside the truck for one last embrace. The embrace was long. Too long. It made the man uncomfortable.
Get on with it already.
Leave.
Viewing such tenderness between two people turned his stomach, like a virus had entered his body and quickly spread.
Anger.
Slow, festering anger.
His heart beating faster and faster.
He reached out, clutching a tree for support, inhaling and then exhaling and then inhaling again.
Focus.
Remember what you’re here for and why.
You’re in control.
It’s all going according to plan.
Cade gripped the handle of the door, but then leaned back to Sloane, whispering something in her ear. For a moment it looked like she might cry, but she didn’t.
Seeing the display of emotion between them was almost like witnessing two lovers on a movie screen, a magical connection that seemed too unrealistic to be real. For a fleeting moment the man was reminded of a time in his own life when he too had been in love. A time so long ago, he strained to remember it.
Over the years he’d been with plenty of women. A few of them he’d even cared for on a marginal, detached level. The rest served a single purpose—a warm body on a cold, lonely night. He had only ever felt real love for a woman once, and that woman had been his wife, and when he lost her, he lost everything.

 

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About the Author:
 
cherylbwA New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Bradshaw writes in the genres of mystery, thriller, romantic suspense, and supernatural suspense. To date, she has published almost two dozen novels and novellas, including her New York Times bestselling mystery series based on a sassy, OCD challenged private eye named Sloane Monroe. In 2013, Bradshaw’s fourth novel in the series, Stranger in Town, was a finalist for a Shamus Award, and that same year, book three in the series, I Have a Secret, won best thriller of the year from eFestival of Words. She was raised in California and currently resides in Salt Lake City, Utah.

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An Interview with Cheryl Bradshaw:

Where did you grow up?

I was born and raised in California and consider myself to be a California girl, although I’ve lived in Utah longer. I go back often, mainly because I miss being by the ocean.

 
Describe yourself in 5 words or less!

Driven, passionate, creative, nurturing, full of life

 
What made you want to become an author and do you feel it was the right decision?

Reading and writing has always flowed through me in a way that made it obvious it was a talent I needed to explore. As a child I read books that were above my school grade. One of my teachers was concerned and approached my mom about it, but my mom understood that I was mature enough to handle reading books meant for a slightly older audience. By the time I reached high school I was writing and publishing short stories and poems. Then for almost two decades I stopped writing for the most part while raising my daughter and picked it back up in my thirties. Now I publish several novels a year.

 
How long have you been writing?

I’ve been published since 2011. It took a couple years for me to hit the USA Today bestselling books list, and about a year later I hit the New York Times bestsellers list. I’ve also been a finalist for awards, including a Shamus Award. It’s been an amazing journey.

 
What kind of research do you do before you begin writing a book?

It depends on the book. I spend the most time researching forensics so I can be as accurate as possible with my descriptions, but it’s always surprising the interesting things I end up looking up. For example, yesterday I watched videos on how to protect yourself from a frontal attack in a parking lot, and I actually learned a few things that are beneficial for me to know!

 
What inspired you to write this book?

My fans waited quite a while for me to write it. It’s the seventh in my Sloane Monroe series, and one thing I wanted to do was to bring back several of the secondary characters I’ve used throughout the series that they’ve been missing. It worked out really well, and I was thrilled to give my fans what they wanted.

 
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

It was so much fun bringing old characters back that I’ve used in previous books in this series. They added a lot of flavor to the plot and weaved in and out of the story well.

 
Tell us about your main characters- what makes them tick?

Sloane Monroe is driven by justice and seeing things through to the end. She’s a methodical character, who sees clues in different ways than most, and this ability allows her to solve even the hardest cases, where others fail. She’s flawed, of course, and struggles with OCD and anxiety, which sometimes works to her benefit, and other times cripples her. By layering her personality she comes across as a real and authentic, which makes her a lot of fun to write.

 
Do the characters all come to you at the same time or do some of them come to you as you write?

It’s a combination of both. I usually create main characters at the onset of starting a new book and then allow my secondary characters to be created as I’m writing their part in the story.

 
Do you have any “side stories” about the characters?

People who know me assume that Sloane Monroe is me. She is in many respects, but she also isn’t. I feel like there’s a piece of me in every character I write. As humans we are all multilayered, not single layered, and this aspect rings true for me in many of my characters.

 
A day in the life of the author…

It rarely the same two days in a row! A typical work day has me checking and responding to fan mail in the morning, working with my assistant on things we’re doing, dealing with different promotions I’m running or planning to run, and checking my social media. Once that’s done I write for the rest of the day.

 
Describe your writing style.

I believe I do a good job of keeping the action moving in my books and writing good cliffhangers to keep my readers turning pages. It’s always nice when my fans say they had only planned to read a couple of chapters and ended up staying up all night because they couldn’t put the book down. I don’t think there’s a compliment better than that!

 
What is your writing process? For instance do you do an outline first? Do you do the chapters first?

I attempt an outline, but it’s always loose. For me personally, I find if I outline too much it takes away from the spontaneity of my characters and the plot. So I generally have an idea of what the next three chapters I’m working on will be, and then I allow my characters to take it in the direction it seems like it needs to go.

 
What can we expect from you in the future?

More Sloane. Always more Sloane! But I also have other a few other series I write as well, and I’m toying with the idea of starting a witch series once my ghost mystery series is finished.

 
What makes a good story?

Good characters and a good plot, characters fans connect to on a personal level.

 
What advice would you give to new authors?

If you’re just starting out, take time to research the genre you’re writing in. I spent a year familiarizing myself with the mystery and thriller genres while I was writing my first book, and it paid off in ways I couldn’t imagine.

 
What are you passionate about these days?

Aside from writing, I’m passionate about traveling and seeing the world, and I often find inspiration for my writing by visiting places I haven’t been to before. Recently I spent time in Spain and Amsterdam. Both places offered a unique perspective and insight into how others live across the world.

 
What do you do to unwind and relax?

I usually listen to relaxing music or watch a television show or see a movie that doesn’t require me to do much thinking and allows me to tap out, even if it’s just for a small amount of time. I also spend time with those I love, and that’s usually all I need to rejuvenate.

 
What is something unique/quirky about you?

My personality, I suppose! I’m an INFJ, which is the rarest of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types, and classified as The Advocate. Less than 1% of the population is this personality, and while I enjoy being unique, I’ve always felt like I’m a lot different than most from a young age. As a writer, it seems to work to my benefit though, so I’ll take it!

 
What are some of your pet peeves?

Things like people not canceling the microwave out when they’re finished cooking, so it sits there at :15 forever (haha), bad drivers or drivers who sit in the fast lane and never pass, and people who lack compassion and kindness for others.

 
What kind of world ruler would you be?

I’m a blue (The Color Code), and not just a little blue, I’m pretty much a full-blown blue personality! This makes me reliable, creative, and practical (sometimes TOO practical, haha) so I surround myself with yellow personality types who help pull out my often reserved playful side. I’m not a big risk-taker, but as a ruler I would consider all options before making what I believed to be the best decision.

 
Who is your hero and why?

It’s honestly hard to choose one, so I’m going to list two here. The first would be Abraham Lincoln. I quote him at the beginning of every story I write. He was an impressive man, with values I admire. The second is the Dalai Lama, who I was fortunate enough to see in person last year. What an amazing man he is. He continually discusses compassion in his speeches, and I’ve always felt that if we had more compassion for others, the world would be a more peaceful, happy place.

 
If you knew you’d die tomorrow, how would you spend your last day?

I’d spend it with those I love, eating my favorite food, sharing memories, and letting those closest to me know how much I care for them before I made my exit from the world.

 
What book do you think everyone should read?

The Art of Happiness – Dalai Lama

 
Tell us about a favorite character from a book.

If we’re talking one of my books, Sloane Monroe was the first character I created and the one my fans connected with first, so she will always be special to me in many ways. I still love writing her too and allowing her to grow and develop through the series.

 
What are you currently reading?

The Crime Book

 
What are your top 10 favorite books/authors?

  • Murder on the Orient Express – Agatha Christie
  • Death on the Nile – Agatha Christie
  • The Godwulf Manuscript – Robert B. Parker
  • Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
  • Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
  • The Art of Happiness – Dalai Lama
  • Codependent No More – Melody Beattie
  • Lonesome Dove – Larry McMurtry
  • The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln – Doris Kearns Goodwin

 

 

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Nelumbo Nucifera by Cristina Slough

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Title: Nelumbo Nucifera
Author: Cristina Slough
Genre: Thriller/ Womens Fiction
Release Date: January 24th, 2017
Cover Designer: Murphy Rae

 

Nelumbo_Amazon_iBooksOn the surface, Gaby Parker has it all; however, behind closed doors, is a woman who lives in constant fear of the man who was supposed to love her: her husband, Kyle. Beaten, desperate, and broken, Gaby realizes the only way to escape from her violent husband is to kill herself — on paper. Gaby is dead, and Riley Locklin is born, residing in the tranquil coastal town of Chesswick Bay Montauk where she hopes to start over and meets a man who shows her bruises aren’t kisses. Meanwhile, back home, Kyle is doing everything in his power to prove Gaby isn’t dead. But…police find her burnt-out car and remains? Kyle isn’t buying it; he knows she’s still alive. He launches his own full investigation to find his wife — and he’ll stop at nothing to claim her back. A female Detective assigned to his wife’s case doesn’t like him very much after discovering a domestic violence report – scorned by the history of her mother’s domestic abuse, she’s determined to send Kyle down for his wife’s murder. And then he finds her. Will Gaby finally take a stand? – NELUMBO NUCIFERA

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Meet The Author:

Novelist, movie addict, and animal lover, Cristina Slough is the author of: Till Death Us Do Part, and Nelumbo Nucifera.

Cristina has always been a bookworm and loves delving into a literacy fictional world of her own.

Cristina is married to Adam, who runs a successful business; together they share their Bedfordshire home with their son, and several spoiled pets.

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