Category Archives: Suspense

Brief Review, Ice Blue by Anne Stuart

Ice Blue
By: Anne Stuart
Publisher: Mira
Publication Date: 2007

Brief Review:

Anne Stuart has created a story that should be on the silver screen.  With well-developed characters, fast-moving plot, and an exotic location, this could be a movie similar to the James Bond films.

Ice Blue is the third book in the Ice Series.

Hana Hayashi hid a Japanese ice-blue ceramic bowl in the care of her charge, Summer Hawthrone, a museum curator.  After Hana Hayashi was killed in an accident the bowl held great sentimental value for Summer.  The bowl, a ceremonial kimono, and a handmade kimono were all that Summer had left of Hana.

Lianne Lovitz promised the bowl to the leader of the True Realization Fellowship without asking her daughter and Summer was bound and determined the man wouldn’t get it.  What she didn’t know was there were more than just the True Realization Fellowship after the bowl and both sides were ready to kill for it.

After a museum exhibit which featured the ice-blue bowl, Summer is kidnapped then rescued by Takashi O’Brien, an international operative for The Committee.  His orders were clear, keep the bowl out of the hands of the True Realization Fellowship and kill anyone who knew the whereabouts of the Hayashi mystical location.  Did Summer know the whereabouts of this location?  Takashi thought so.

 

Author Bio: (From author’s Amazon page)

I’ve been writing since the dawn of time. A child prodigy, I made my first professional sale to Jack and Jill Magazine at the age of 7, for which I received $25 (admittedly my father worked for the publisher). Since then I’ve written gothics, regencies, romantic suspense, historical romance, series romance — anything with sex and violence, love and redemption. I misbehave frequently but somehow have managed to amass lots of glittering prizes, like NYT, PW and USA Today bestseller status, Lifetime Achievement Award from the Romance Writers of America, and a decent smattering of Romantic times and RITA awards.

I live on a lake in Northern Vermont with my incredibly fabulous husband. My two children have flown the coop, but the three cats do their best to keep us from being lonely.

In my spare time I quilt and play around with wearable art, and the rest of the time I write write write. Apparently, women of a certain age get a rush of creativity, and I’m currently enjoying it. Too many stories to write, not enough hours in the day.

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7 Threads

Today I am “Spotlighting” Seven Threads by Jason Atkinson.

Book Details:

Book Title: Seven Threads: A Book of Short Stories
Author: Jason Atkinson
Category: Adult Fiction, 151 pages
Genre: Thriller and Suspense
Publisher: Mascot Books
Release date: July 4, 2017
Tour dates: July 10 to 28, 2017
Content Rating: PG

Book Description:

In this collection of seven short stories from Jason Atkinson, follow a man accused of murder, a runaway girl on a train, a scientist at the heart of a government conspiracy, and more! Full of twists and turns, Seven Threads offers a selection of fast-paced stories full of heart and excitement.

Buy the Book:

 



 

Meet the Author:

Jason Atkinson lives in the Midwest with his wife and son. With a love of writing, this is his 3rd book, but the first book in the fiction category. Short stories are easy to digest, and yet, this book still provides all the joys for the long haul reader. Jason writes for everyone in mind when creating this piece and hopes you will enjoy it as much as he did when writing it.

Connect with the author: Website ~ Facebook

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BOOK SPOTLIGHT TOUR:

July 10 – Library of Clean Reads – book spotlight / giveaway
July 10 – Simple Wyrdings – book spotlight / giveaway
July 11 – Kristin’s Novel Café – book spotlight / interview
July 11 – Mystery Suspense Reviews – book spotlight / guest post
July 12 – Books, Dreams, Life –  book spotlight / interview
July 12 – #redhead.with.book – book spotlight / giveaway
July 13 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 13 – 100 Pages A Day – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 14 – The Reader’s Handbook – book spotlight / giveaway
July 14 – Bound 2 Escape – book spotlight / giveaway
July 17 – T’s Stuff – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 17 – A Holland Reads – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 18 – FUONLYKNEW – book spotlight / interview / giveaway
July 18 – Rainy Day Reviews – book spotlight / interview / giveaway
July 18 – Cindy’s Notebook – book spotlight / giveaway
July 19 – The Irresponsible Reader – book spotlight / interview / giveaway
July 19 – StoreyBook Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 19 – Thoughts on Books – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 20 – Hall Ways Blog –  book spotlight / interview / giveaway
July 20 – The Cubicle Escapee – book spotlight / giveaway
July 20 – The Book Drealms – book spotlight / giveaway
July 21 – My Devotional Thoughts – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 21 – Travelling Through Words – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 24 – Teresa Edmond-Sargeant – book spotlight / guest post
July 24 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway
July 25 – The Autistic Gamer – book spotlight
July 25 – Deal Sharing Aunt – book spotlight / interview / giveaway
July 26 – JBronder Book Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 27 – Celticlady’s Reviews – book spotlight / giveaway
July 27 – Book Crazy Scrapbook Mama – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway
July 28 – Books for Books – book spotlight
July 28 – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book spotlight / guest post / giveaway

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7 Ways to Build Suspense

This post was originally posted by the late John Yeoman on October 4, 2012.  His title was “Seven Simple Ways to Build Suspense.”  John’s website http://www.writers-village.org has been disabled.

****

How many ways can you hang a page? Or a scene? Or a chapter? That old ploy, the cliffhanger, has made a comeback of late in the penny dreadfuls of Dan Brown. Every episode ends upon a note of intrigue, horror or mystery to entice us to turn the page.

His counterpart in melodrama Kathy Reichs uses so many hangers – around three per scene – that she must pluck them out of a database.

Can we use page hangers without appearing to be formulaic? 

Yes! (Please turn my page. I shall reveal the secrets soon…)

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Spring Forward Book Attack

Do you like to read? Do you like free books? Of course, you do! This is Goodreads!
Support for Indie Authors is proud to announce our first Free & Bargain Book event of 2017!

Load up your Kindle with more than 125 free and 99¢ book deals in a wide variety of genres!

Details: For three days beginning Friday, March 31st and running through Sunday, April 2nd, visit our event website to nab a whack load of free and 99¢ Kindle ebooks by our indie author members.

That’s it! No RSVP, no obligation, and best of all, no need to put on pants!* Some books will be offered all three days, but there are many one day only freebies, so make sure to check the site each day!

*Pants are only optional if you are browsing our event from the comfort of your home. SIAFBB is not responsible for pantsless readers wandering aimlessly in public spaces.

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What is a Red Herring in a Mystery Novel?

What is a Red Herring?

A red herring is something in a mystery novel or story that appears to be a clue but instead is a false clue that sends readers apprehending someone who is not the real villain.

An example of a “red herring” would be to choose an innocent character and give them a motive that makes them a strong suspect as the murderer.

 

To study “red herrings” read Agatha Christie who has been dubbed “the Queen of red herrings.”

 

 

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Filed under Crime Fiction, Fiction, Genre, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller

Whomever Has the Courage to Read

Whomever Has the Courage to Read is a short story that I wrote in a Children’s Literature class in the late 1980s.  Over the years I have thought about turning this story into a book.  Maybe, someday.

***

Being thirteen was difficult, thought Matt.  Too old to play with electric trains and too young to have a car. And, being stuck at Grandpa’s lake cottage for the summer and having it rain all day didn’t help.

Rainy days were easy to fill if you like to sleep, like Grandpa Henry did, listening to the squeak and hum of the fan, or sew like his ten-year-old sister Amber did on a scrap of fabric she had found in the attic.

“Attic.  A great idea,” Matt said to himself.  He climbed the old wooden staircase slowly, hoping he would not wake Grandpa, with the squeaking sound of the floorboards.

The heavy door groaned as Matt swung it back.  He reached for the light switch just inside the dark musky room.  Suddenly, the room filled with shadows by a long single bare light bulb swaying down from the rafters in the center of the room.

A huge cedar trunk stood in one corner.  Matt made his way to it watching the shadows lurk about and lifted the heavy lid.  Instead of patchwork quilts, the trunk was full of old books.

One book, in particular, caught Matt’s eye.  It was not very large and bound in soft leather the same yellow color of Grandpa’s work gloves.

Matt felt strange as he looked at the book.  He started to tremble and got the feeling he was trespassing.  Curiosity on what the book contained had him shoving aside his feelings and when he opened the book he read:

“To whomever has the courage to read me.”

“I have plenty of courage,” Matt said softly into the stale air.  He felt a breeze that caused the hair on the back of his neck to rise.  Matt looked around the room as though he was being watched and wondered where the breeze came from since the small windows were nailed shut.  Once he reassured himself he was alone, he took a deep breath and turned the page to read:

“July 9th;

“On the night Judge Smith drowned in Stockdale Bay, I saw you.  You were with him in his green beat-up flat-bottom boat.  Old Sheriff Taylor said Judge had whiskey bottles in the boat.  He then concluded that Judge Smith went out fishin’ alone, got drunk, fell overboard while trying to pull in a fish, and was, by then, too drunk to swim.

“But you know and I know Judge Smith was a good strong swimmer and drank nothing stronger than black coffee.

“Guess you had your reasons.”

Matt gasped, trying hard not to believe what he was reading.  Who was this Judge Smith and who was the author of this diary?  Scared and puzzled by the whole thing, Matt continued to read hoping he would find some answers.

“August 11th;

“Ma took me to see one of them new-fangled doctors they call psychiatrists.  I overheard them talking and they say I am crazy, but I’m not and you know it.

“Why did you kill Doc Baker?  Was he getting close to the truth about poor ole Judge Smith?

“Now you shouldn’t have killed Doc like that.”

…to be continued…

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Featuring Children, Tweens & YA Authors

Are you a Children’s Author?

Do you write for tweens?

What about Young Adults?

I am paying it forward in 2017 by featuring authors on my blog.

Sign up for me to feature you on the Feature Calendar page!feature-md

Occasionally, there will be bonus material, giveaways, reviews and more!

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A Cup Full of Midnight

a-cup-full-of-midnightTitle: A Cup Full of MidnightJared Mckean Series
By: Jaden Terrell
Publisher: Permanent Press
Publication Date: August 9, 2012
Genre: Mystery/Murder Mystery

 

Book Excerpt:

Chapter 1

THE CALL CAME three hours into the stakeout, just as the man in the cowboy hat pulled up to the curb in a red Lexus so polished it looked like it had been dipped in molten glass. It was a wet winter afternoon, and a flat gray sky spat sleet and ice onto the windshield of my black and chrome Chevy Silverado pickup. A sweet ride. Not so sweet in the middle of winter with the engine off to keep plumes of exhaust from drawing attention.

Shivering behind the wheel, I blew on my hands to warm them. Then, ignoring the phone vibrating in my cup holder, I lowered the window and reached across the seat for my camera. With the office rent due and Christmas a few weeks away, the two hundred dollars a day plus expenses my client was paying for surveillance shots said whoever was on the phone could wait.

It buzzed again, rattling against the plastic like a hornet against glass. Holding the camera to my eye with one hand, I felt for the phone with the other and pressed a button on the side, cutting the connection.

Across the street, the man in the cowboy hat, smalltime record producer and big time philanderer Richie Barron, clambered out of the driver’s seat and waddled to the passenger side, the tails of his leather duster flapping around his calves. The hat was a prop. He was built like a groundhog, and if he’d ever even been on a horse, it was being led in circles at some kid’s birthday party.

As he reached for the handle of the passenger door, I adjusted the lens and snapped a photo. The phone buzzed again. This time, I glanced over at the caller ID on the illuminated screen. My niece, Caitlin. I frowned. She wouldn’t risk losing her phone privileges to call me in the middle of a school day unless she had a serious problem. But why call me, instead of my brother or his wife?

I lowered the camera and fumbled for the phone with cold-numbed fingers. Flipped it open and held it to my ear.

“What’s going on, Katie-Bear?” I said. At fourteen, she was too old for the nickname, but as her favorite—and only—uncle, I got a special dispensation.

“Hey, Uncle Jared.” Her voice was almost too soft to make out, so I shifted the camera and put a finger in the opposite ear to hear better. “I’m not supposed to have my cell phone out, but . . .”

“But?” Phone tucked between my jaw and shoulder, I aimed the Sony and snapped another picture as Richie slung open the passenger door of the Lexus. Snapped another as a woman in black tights and stiletto-heeled boots emerged, looking like she’d stuffed the bra beneath her fur cape with casaba melons. A minimal background check had identified her as Destiny Mirage, a twenty-two-year-old stripper with musical aspirations. Gypsy Rose Lee meets Dolly Parton.

Caitlin said, “I have to tell you something.”

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American Book Awards Program

From the website of – Before Columbus Foundation

The American Book Awards Program is not associated with any industry group or trade organization. The American Book Awards offer no cash prize nor do they require any financial commitments from the authors or their publishers. The Award winners are nominated and selected by a panel of writers, editors, and publishers who also represent the diversity of American literary culture.

Submissions

There are no application forms, fees, or any other restrictions for submissions, nominations, or recommendations to the panel. The book is what matters, not the procedure. The only requirement is that two copies of the book must be mailed to the Before Columbus Foundation by December 31st for consideration for the following year’s Awards. Anyone may make a submission (it does not have to be the publisher). There is no limit on the number of titles that may be submitted. All genres are accepted (including anthologies, children’s books, and multimedia). You may include reviews, publicity, or other informational material with your submission if you wish.

American Book Awards
Before Columbus Foundation 

The Raymond House
655-13th Street, Suite 302
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 268-9775
beforecolumbusfoundation@gmail.com

For more information visit – http://www.beforecolumbusfoundation.com/american-book-awards/

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Lucky the Hard Way

lucky-the-hard-way-finalTitle: Lucky the Hard Way  (The Lucky O-Toole Vegas Adventure Series, Volume 7)
By: Deborah Coonts
Publisher:  Deborah B. Coonts
Publication Date: November 14, 2016
Paperback: 318 pages
ISBN-10: 1944831827
ISBN-13: 978-1944831820
Price: Paperback – $15.99; Kindle: $4.99

 

 

 

 

About the Book:

The seventh in the successful Lucky O’Toole Vegas Adventure Series A dead body. A former lover on the run. Santa has given Lucky more than she asked for. As Christmases go, this one is proving a bit taxing for Lucky O’Toole, Vice President of Customer Relations for the Babylon, Las Vegas’ most over-the-top Strip resort casino. While facing a murder indictment, Teddie, Lucky’s former lover, has fled to Macau hot on the heels of the man everyone thinks is the real murderer, Irv Gittings. Lucky knows that if Irv finds Teddie first, Lucky will never see him again. Mr. Cho, a powerful figure in the Chinese underworld in Macau, is blackmailing the Big Boss with knowledge of gambling anomalies at the Babylon’s property in Macau. If the Macanese authorities are alerted, the resulting fallout would crumble the financial foundation of Lucky’s entire gambling empire. A trip to Macau is inevitable. With the opening of her own hotel less than a week away, and her engagement still very new, for Lucky the timing couldn’t be worse. As she’s pumping a local source for information about Mr. Cho, the lady is shot in front of her—Lucky narrowly taking the bullet. Lucky has no idea the bullet was really meant for her. With the help of her sidekick, Detective Romeo, Lucky must find Teddie, bring Irv Gittings and Mr. Cho to justice. But can Lucky beat them at their own game without getting caught in the trap? And will she be in time to rescue Teddie?

 

deb_signing_lookDEBORAH COONTS BIO

My mother tells me I was born a very long time ago, but I’m not so sure—my mother can’t be trusted.  These things I do know:  I was raised in Texas on barbeque, Mexican food and beer.  I am the author of Wanna Get Lucky?  (A NY Times Notable Crime Novel and double RITA™ Finalist), its six sequels, Lucky the Hard Way, the latest and just out, and four between-the-books novellas.  Currently, I’m stretching my writer muscles working on a women’s fiction/contemporary romance series set in Napa—the first novel, Crushed, is out now.  Next up is After Me, a thriller incorporating cutting-edge science and a protagonist who literally can’t remember why everyone wants her dead.  In the pipeline is a romantic suspense series featuring a female helicopter pilot, as well as the next Lucky adventure—all very different projects. So, if you see me with a glass of Champagne in hand, you’ll understand.  I can usually be found at the bar, but also at

Website: www.deborahcoonts.com

 

Bonus: ch-1-lucky-the-hard-way by Deborah Coonts.  Enjoy!

 

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