Feb 172017
 

Stolen

by Carey Baldwin

on Tour February 14 – March 3, 2017

Synopsis:

Stolen by Carey Baldwin

Is she missing…or a murderer?

When Laura Chaucer, daughter of a U.S. senator, vanishes from her college campus, celebrated FBI profilers Special Agent Atticus Spenser and forensic psychiatrist Dr. Caitlin Cassidy are called in. Thirteen years ago, Laura and her nanny disappeared from her family’s Denver home. Laura was found alive, but her nanny wasn’t so lucky… and the killer was never caught. Laura could identify him—if only she didn’t have a deep, dark hole in her memory.

Now she’s missing again. Did the troubled young woman run away or has the kidnapper returned? As women who look eerily similar to Laura’s nanny begin turning up dead, the Chaucer family psychiatrist renders a disturbing opinion: Laura is unstable, a danger to herself and others. Who knows what terrible secrets lurk in the shadowy recesses of her mind? Cassidy and Spenser must solve one of the most infamous cold cases ever to uncover the answer: Is Laura a killer, or is a monster still out there, waiting to claim another victim?

MY REVIEW

5 stars

Laura Chaucer, daughter of Senator Whit and Tracy Chaucer, is missing, AGAIN! Thirteen years earlier, at the age of 8, Laura and her Nanny were kidnapped and the Nanny found murdered. Laura, having been treated for mental illness since the first incident, her memory is fuzzy due to the many anti-psychotic meds. And now her friend is found dead. Is she the killer? She doesn’t think so but wants to find the “monster” who she believes is responsible.

A tense, page-turning read with an explosive ending! One I didn’t see coming!

STOLEN will definitely be one of my Top Ten reads of 2017!

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense, Thriller
Published by: Witness Impulse
Publication Date: February 14th 2017
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 0062495542 (ISBN13: 9780062495549)
Series: Cassidy & Spenser #4
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Barnes & Noble 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Read an excerpt:

Chapter One

Twilight

Somewhere in the Rocky Mountains

Consciousness was the enemy and Laura Chaucer its captive. No matter how badly she wanted to flee into a dark, unseeing void, the menacing chill of the knife pressed against her neck forced her to keep her chin high and her eyes open. As her pulse raged, pounding against the deadly blade, she wondered, horrified, if it was possible for her throat to slit itself.

If only her mind would drop into an abyss. If only she could crawl into a black hole and escape awareness, at least then she wouldn’t suffer. Cowardice dragged her eyelids shut.

Stop running away.

From deep within, a voice demanded she bear witness to her own death.
Like broken wings beating against a gale, her eyelids fluttered up. Evil had been swirling around her for as long as she could remember, but she’d never had the courage to face it. Now, in her last moments, she must find the will. Before she left this twisted world, she needed to know the truth.

Who are you?

The answer she’d been running from her entire life loomed right behind her.

But the knife prevented her from swiveling her head to confront the bastard. A defiant move like that would surely cost her whatever precious seconds she had left. His breath, warm on her cheek reeked of booze, its stench curdling in her already woozy stomach.

Careful not to move her head, she braved a glance down and noted a wood floor.

Where am I?

A candle nub flickered in the dark; its yellow light illuminating patches of dust caked on an uneven plank tabletop. Bare log walls surrounded her. Eager for more clues, she sniffed. The scent of rain and earth hung heavily in the air. He must’ve stolen her from her room and brought her to a cabin—a primitive one.

Who was he?

You know, the voice within insisted. Stop pretending you don’t.

“I-I don’t know anything,” she answered, as if he and her thoughts were one and the same. “P-please, just let me go.”

The knife slipped across her throat, leaving fire trailing in its wake. Blood, warm and sticky, dribbled down her chest. Her head became heavy. The room spun. It would be so easy to let her chin fall, to drift into blessed unconsciousness, to leave it all behind.

But that would mean dying the same way she’d lived: running from the truth.

It’s not too late. As long as you have one breath left, there’s still time to change your craven ways.

Watching the blood, already darkening from contact with the air, snake between her breasts, she took it all in, and a gasp agonized its way up her throat.

She was naked.

Bound around the waist, chest and ankles to a chair.

It all seemed so…unreal. But the scrape of splintered wood beneath her bottom, the shivers that wracked her body from the frigid air, told her this was no dream. This wasn’t another one of her ubiquitous nightmares.

If she closed her eyes now, she’d never wake up.

Her throat burned with the urge to scream. But sensing that might give him pleasure, she clamped her teeth together, stuffing her fear down deep. She inhaled a fortifying breath through her nose. Wiggled her freezing fingers. But when she tried to shift her arms into a more comfortable position, she found that they, too, were tied to the chair, just up to the elbows. He’d left her hands and lower arms free, giving her enough slack to cross her palms in her lap and cover herself. Tears of gratitude for this small kindness welled in her eyes.

Maybe he of the knife had a tiny, shriveled semblance of a heart.

He proved he did not by dragging the jagged blade across her neck again—a shallow retracing of its former path that produced exquisite pain and more hot red blood. The need to cry out shook her body so hard the legs of the chair rattled against the floor. Then he pressed the knife’s point into the hollow of her neck—that spot that ought to be reserved for a lover’s kiss. It was as if this monster could not decide whether he wanted to kill her with a long, decimating swipe or by a swift, stabbing impalement. She didn’t know whether he was deliberately prolonging her agony or working up his nerve.

A spasm of fear knotted her toes. Her vocal chords trembled from the impossible effort of restraint. Finally, she opened her mouth, releasing a hysterical noise.

He wanted to hear her scream? Let him hear her laugh instead. Her pulse bounded harder against the blade, but she no longer feared the consequence.

Whether he revealed himself to her or not, she suddenly didn’t care. It didn’t matter who he was. It only mattered who she was. Relief flooded her entire being, drenching her in joy.
Her death would be a victory.

Because it answered, once and for all, the question that had haunted her since the age of eight.

She was not a murderer.

Excerpt from Stolen by Carey Baldwin. Copyright © 2017 by Carey Baldwin & WitnessImpulse. Reproduced with permission from WitnessImpulse. All rights reserved.

Kudos for Carey Baldwin:

JUDGMENT, the first book in my Cassidy & Spenser Thriller series, has been named one of the “BEST BOOKS of 2014” by SUSPENSE MAGAZINE.

Both JUDGMENT & CONFESSION are BOOKSELLERS BEST AWARD Finalists
JUDGMENT is a DAPHNE DU MAURIER AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN MYSTERY/SUSPENSE Finalist and a SILVER FALCHION finalist.

Author Bio:

Carey BaldwinCarey Baldwin is a mild-mannered doctor by day and an award-winning author of edgy suspense by night. She holds two doctoral degrees, one in medicine and one in psychology. She loves reading and writing stories that keep you off balance and on the edge of your seat. Carey lives in the southwestern United States with her amazing family. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and chasing wildflowers.

Q&A with Carey Baldwin

Writing and Reading:
Do you draw from personal experiences and/or current events?
Yes to both. STOLEN was inspired by a blend of real life cases. CONFESSION is based in part on my career as a psychologist, and FIRST DO NO EVIL was inspired by my medical patients’ reactions when the cervical cancer vaccine first came out. The key word here is inspiration. None of my books contain real-life events.

Everything is FICTION: A product of my wild imagination.

Do you start with the conclusion and plot in reverse or start from the beginning and see where the story line brings you?
I can’t say that I’ve ever started with the conclusion. I have started in the middle though! Generally speaking I come up with characters or a “What if?” scenario and go from there.

Are any of your characters based on you or people that you know?
Yes and no. I think people in my world influence my characters, but I don’t have any who are based on someone I know. As I said earlier, it’s all FICTION.

Your routine when writing? Any idiosyncrasies?
I don’t have any rituals, but my husband thinks it’s odd when I get up at 3am to write a scene I’ve been dreaming about.

Tell us why we should read this book.
Not everyone should. It can get dark and gritty, so if that bothers you, STOLEN might not be for you. It has lighter, funnier moments and a touch of romance. If you don’t care for that, STOLEN might not be for you. But if you like dark, intense psychological thrillers with twist, turns and a bit of fun—it just might be your cup of tea.

Who are some of your favorite authors?
Ack. Too many to name, but Tess Gerritsen, Harlan Coben, Karin Slaughter, Lisa Gardner, Wendy Corsi Staub, Stella Cameron, Michael Connelly, Tami Hoag and Gillian Flynn make a nice start to this very incomplete list.

What are you reading now?
I recently finished YOU by Caroline Kepnes. Loved it.

Are you working on your next novel? Can you tell us a little about it?
Yes! I’m working on the next book in the Cassidy & Spenser series. I’m not trying to keep the title secret. I just don’t have one for it yet. My working title, which will definitely change, is Tahiti—because that’s where it takes place. If you’ve been following the series, you know that Spense and Caity have been trying to take a vacation for a long time, but pesky killers keep getting in the way. In this upcoming book, they definitely make it to Tahiti, but what happens once they get there is not the dream vacation they’d been planning. I’m mean like that.

Fun questions:
Your novel will be a movie. Who would you cast?
I could go with Liam Hemsworth as Spense, and I think Dakota Johnson would be terrific as Caity. Let’s do it!

Favorite leisure activity/hobby?
Definitely chasing wildflowers. Someone told me I should take that out of my bio because it sounds silly. But I don’t think so—and it’s true. During the wildflower season, I will get in the car or on a plane and then hike all day to get to the most beautiful spots. And I have my family in tow. Not sure what’s silly about enjoying nature with the people you love!

Favorite meal?
Chicken and Dumplings. Yum.

Thank you so much for having me on the blog!
Happy Reading!
Carey

Catch Up With Ms. Baldwin On:
Website 🔗, Goodreads, Twitter 🔗, & Facebook 🔗!

 

Tour Participants:




 

Giveaway:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Carey Baldwin and William Morrow | WitnessImpulse. There will be 5 US winners of one (1) eBook copy of Stolen by Carey Baldwin. The giveaway begins on February 12th and runs through March 5th, 2017.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

 

Feb 162017
 

Starting in March, I will be instituting a new feature: Author Of The Month!

It will consist of 5 postings and a giveaway for one author so that you can meet and learn more about that particular author.

We have been extremely busy at Partners In Crime Tours and I wanted to showcase some of these very talented authors.

The postings will be each month on the 1st, 8th, 15th, 22nd and 29th. Each post will be different.

I hope you check this out and that you enjoy it. Feedback is always welcomed.

Feb 152017
 

Cardiac by Jeffrey Monaghan Tour Banner

Cardiac

by Jeffrey Monaghan

on Tour February 1-28, 2017

Synopsis:

Cardiac by Jeffrey MonaghanEmbattled CEO Jack Getty is nervous. This is his final chance to save his company. He is announcing his firm’s breakthrough discovery at the world’s largest annual biotech conference. A discovery that trials show will extend human life by 75%. But as Jack approaches the podium, he suffers a major heart attack and collapses on the stage, stunning the conference attendees.

Jack is rushed to the emergency room where surgeons implant the latest Wi-Fi enabled pacemaker, saving his life in the process. What Jack doesn’t know, however, is that an underground hacking group has its sights set on manipulating his “secure” pacemaker to get information only he can provide. Despite the hackers unrelenting terror, Jack refuses to give them what they want and soon starts to uncover the true motives of this mysterious and powerful group.

MY REVIEW

5+ stars

Unbelievable! I am still having heart palpitations!

This book was a spine chilling nonstop action read!

Jack Getty, CEO, is about to make a medical breakthrough announcement. But someone else has a different plan. That somebody causes Jack to have an MI as he is about to walk on stage so that he will need a pacemaker, a new WiFi pacemaker. But he soon finds out that someone has control of his pacemaker and is causing him to suffer cardiac events unless he does what they want.

Murder, kidnapping, and blackmail are just some of the dynamics of this story.

A gripping and riveting read that blew me away. At times I found myself holding my breath!

This is the first book that I have read by this author but am looking forward to more from him.

CARDIAC is in my Top Ten Books of 2016! Highly recommend!

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller
Publication Date: May 2016
Number of Pages: 230
ISBN: 1533641463
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Read an excerpt:

Chapter 1

Jack dropped his cell phone into his pocket, took a deep breath and focused on the moment at hand. The lights on stage were intense, their heat radiating to the dark spot where he stood just behind a thick, dark curtain off stage. A deep, musty odor floated off. A smell that reminded him of his grandmother’s sewing room. It was comforting during such an anxiety filled moment. He leaned closer, unaware, and took a deep breath. Then the stage exploded with light.

The energy and murmurs of the enormous crowd filled the auditorium. Jack’s heart began to race with a nervous excitement. He had done this a dozen times, but this time he was literally going to change the world, and hopefully save his company at the same time. He closed his eyes and took a deep, slow breath. Deep inhale. Deep exhale. And again. Slow, deep inhale. Slow, deep exhale, pushing the recent phone conversation to the back of his mind. The moisture on his palms felt cool and the tips of his fingers, cold.

He concentrated on the moment as thoughts of his pending presentation repeated in his head. Introduction…industry direction…announce test results of groundbreaking new drug…then Algen’s plans for the future…closing. Introduction…industry direction…announce DD13…Algen’s plans for the future…closing. With this announcement, he was about to push his company to the forefront of the biotech industry, and garner worldwide recognition and influence for himself and Algen.

The waiting was the torturous part. Once he started speaking it always came together. In fact, once he began, he usually slipped his notes into his pocket after the first few minutes. It was a rush having the attention of thousands waiting on every word. In fact, he enjoyed speaking in front of large crowds far more than speaking in small groups. He could avoid questions in a large crowd by simply not asking for them. He could just keep speaking. Small groups were more intimate and Jack was not good at small talk. He did his best to avoid talking to others about his personal life.

The announcer’s voice reverberated through the vast hall, “Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to thank you all for attending our 10th Annual ASR International Life Sciences and Biotechnology Conference.” Jack rubbed his palms on his pants, standing just out of reach of the bright lights.

“As many of you know, this is a very exciting time in our industry. A time that has shown extraordinary advancement in our understanding of the fundamental biological mechanisms of human life. A time when major discoveries are coming at an increasingly accelerated rate. And a time that will be looked back on as the dawning of a new age in meeting the needs of patients and doctors across the globe.”

Jack fiddled with the knot in his tie, wiggling it to make sure it was straight. He ran his palms down the front of his suit and tugged at the bottom of his jacket to eliminate imaginary creases. He stood waiting for his cue. As he waited, two sharp buzzes stung his thigh. He fumbled for the phone in his pocket.

“Crap!”

He slid the cool metal phone from his pocket and braced for more bad news. Instead, it was a text from his wife.

‘Are you free? I have more questions about Miller’

‘can’t right now. about to go on stage’

‘OK. Good luck. You’ll do great.’
‘will call you later’

Jack grinned and wished he could talk to his wife now, but there wasn’t time. He allowed himself a moment. A moment to remember how lucky he was. His heart rate slowed and he felt calm. He reread the exchange with Cynthia as he noticed the subtle aroma of the stage curtains again. His eyes closed and he tipped his head back. She had always believed in him. Even when he told her about the times when he drank too much and ended up on the streets. Even when he didn’t believe in himself. She was the talented one, an amazing writer. But it was always she that insisted he was the one who capable of doing big things. Jack was not so sure back then. But here he was, about to do something unimaginable.

A light tap on the shoulder startled Jack. A thin, dark-haired young man stood beside him. A large identification badge hanging around his neck. He looked like a local college kid, called to work at the convention center whenever there was a big conference in town. He wore the basic conference employee uniform. A black t-shirt and khakis. The name tag hanging from his neck read Zachary Dietrich, 10th Annual ASR Conference Employee.

“Don’t forget this, Mr. Getty. You know how to use it, right?” The young man handed Jack a small remote that would allow him to change the slides in his presentation.

“Oh shoot, thank you…” Jack looked at the employee’s name tag, “…Zachary. That would have been a little embarrassing getting stuck on the first slide.”

“I’m sure you would have figured something out, sir.”

“Well, I appreciate the thought, but you can’t always save someone from themselves.”

The young man smiled. “Is there anything else I can get for you, Mr. Getty? Would you like some water?”

“I think I’m good for now, thank you.”

“I don’t mean to be pushy, sir, but I highly recommend at least one drink.” Zachary lifted a steel thermos. “It’s warm water with a little lemon. My public speaking professor recommends it. It helps with dry mouth and cuts through any mucus buildup in your throat. It’s awesome.”

“Well, okay, just a quick sip.”

The young stagehand unscrewed the top and handed the thermos to Jack. Jack took it and tipped it to his lips. The young man was right. The warm, slightly sour water provided immediate relief to his parched mouth. Jack took a second drink.

“Thank you, Zachary,” Jack said as he handed the thermos back to the stage hand. “I appreciate your help.”

“No problem, Mr. Getty. Good luck, you’re going to do great,” replied the youthful man, visibly pleased that he was able to help the man of the hour. Jack smiled as he watched the young, go-getter scurry off to attend to other business. He turned his attention back to the stage.

“And we are so thankful to the city of Baltimore for making us feel so welcome.” The speaker clapped in appreciation and the crowd joined him with pleasant applause. Without thinking, Jack applauded as well.

“We have a number of excellent speakers over the next few days. And I will get to those in a few moments. But first, I’d like to introduce one of the top leaders in our industry. He’s a true innovator and respected member of our community. His company, Algen Incorporated, is leading the way in minimizing and reversing the effects of Alzheimer’s and other age related diseases. Please help me welcome the CEO of Algen, Mister Jack Getty!” The speaker reached his hand out towards the side of the stage, inviting Jack to come out and join him. Jack put on a smile and headed out into the lights; confident, adrenaline pumping through his veins and heart pounding in his chest. He was about to shock the world.

The crowd stood and cheered. Jack raised his right hand in acknowledgement, “thank you” he mouthed, walking onto the stage. The spotlights caused him to squint as the crowd roared in the darkness just beyond their hot, white brilliance. Jack turned back towards the speaker and continued walking, hand extended for a firm handshake. As he moved across the stage, his vision blurred. He opened his eyes wide and then squeezed them closed for a moment.

“What the…” Jack murmured.

When he opened them the speaker split in two, then four, then dozens of images swirled in front of him. Another step and now his chest began to tighten. Jack moaned, putting both hands on his chest. He blinked again. His vision began to fade and the muscles in his chest squeezed ever tighter. A heaviness pulled him towards the floor. Gasping for air, Jack struggled to keep his balance.

His next step became a lunge and he felt himself falling, unsure of when and what he would hit. A desperate reach for the shape of a podium turned into a vain attempt to catch himself. His left hand grasped for the microphone, snagged it with two fingers, and pulled the entire podium to the floor as he fell. It smashed on the stage, breaking into large pieces. The squeal of feedback ripped through the auditorium speakers. Jack slammed into the floor next to the podium with a heavy thud. His vision focused long enough to catch a glimpse of a woman in the front row, hands over her ears grimacing at the screeching microphone. He heard screams in the distance.

A hushed murmur fell over the crowd. Jack fought to stay conscious; the heaviness in his chest forced the air from his lungs. The lights above flooded into his spinning vision. He lay flat on his back, struggling to fight off the darkness that threatened to consume him.

“Someone call an ambulance!”

The pain in Jack’s chest shot down his left arm. I’m dying!
The silhouette of a person appeared above him and blocked out the light. “Jack, can you hear me? Jack? Shit!” Jack wanted to respond but couldn’t. He was directing every effort to staying conscious.

“Shit, shit, shit,” Jack heard the frantic, trembling voice say. There was a firm tugging around his neck and a second voice broke into the chaos.

“Loosen it as much as you can. And unbutton his shirt. Make sure he can breathe.”

“I’m trying. Shit! Come on, Jack. Keep breathing.” The tugging at his neck became more frenzied. The voices started to fade and Jack could feel himself losing awareness.

“We’re losing him! We’re losing him! Someone please…”

He could hold on no longer. Jack willingly gave in to the darkness that was pulling him away from the voices. His body relaxed and he felt at peace. He saw his oldest son as a toddler, football grasped with both hands and that lopsided smile that warmed his heart. He saw his youngest son putting on his baseball uniform for the first time. And a vision of his wife on their wedding day pulled him deeper into his memories and away from the desperate voices.

All the commotion provided a distraction for a young, red-headed man seated at the end of the aisle. He was thirty rows back near one of the exits.

“Everyone, please remain seated,” came an announcement over the loudspeakers. The man ignored the instructions. He rose from his seat, doing his best not to draw attention. “Mr. Getty is getting the necessary medical assistance and will be okay.” The red-headed man knew this wasn’t true, at least not the part about Jack being okay. He slipped out the side doors and onto the busy streets of downtown Baltimore, anxious to blend in with the pedestrians. As he walked, he turned on his cell phone. He fought against his shaking fingers as he dialed. The phone rang.

“Yes, it’s done…yes I’m sure…I saw him hit the stage…I don’t know…they were tending to him as I left….I said I don’t know…sorry, I’m not going back in there…no way…I don’t care. I did what you asked and now I’m done.”

The man ended the call, slid the phone back into his pocket, and looked around to see if anyone had listened to his conversation, still disturbed by what had taken place. The people on the street had more important concerns than eavesdropping on a conservatively-dressed college type, so he vanished into the afternoon sun.

After a few blocks, a park appeared on the opposite side of the street. The man looked both ways and careened across the street, horns honking at him as he went. His stomach churned with anxiety and he was not completely aware of his surroundings, focused on creating as much distance as possible between him and the conference hall. He needed to find a calm, secluded place to sit and catch his breath; and his sanity.

He entered the park and saw a worn, stone bench under a large elm tree about fifty yards away. He turned to see if anyone had followed him, then made his way to the tree and settled on the hard, cool bench. He took a deep breath. His right leg bounced, quick and uncontrollable.

“Son of a bitch…”

The man ran his hand up his forehead and grasped a handful of hair between his fingers in a tight fist. He breathed again. His leg stopped bouncing and he began to relax. Then, just as he had begun to calm down, his phone buzzed in his pocket.

“Hello…sorry, I didn’t mean to hang up on you…the whole thing freaked me out. I’ve never seen anything like that in person. There’s a big difference between seeing Darth Vader choke out Admiral Motti and seeing a real human being hit the ground like that. I had to get out of there…yes, I know. All I can tell you is that it worked. I’m guessing we’ll be able to find out by the end of the day…Will do.”

The red-headed man dropped his head, slumped his shoulders, and rested his elbows on his knees. A pleasant breeze rustled the leaves in the tree above.

Jeffrey MonaghanAuthor Bio:

Jeffrey Monaghan is a Silicon Valley executive with an unhealthy obsession for technology. He grew up in Southern California and currently lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and two children. Cardiac is his debut novel.

Catch Up with Jeffrey Monaghan on Facebook 🔗!

Tour Participants:

Check out the participants on this tour! Visit their sites for giveaways, reviews, interviews, guest posts, & excerpts!


Don’t Miss Your Chance to WIN!

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Jeffrey Monaghan. There will be 5 US winners of one (1) eBook copy of Cardiac by Jeffrey Monaghan. The giveaway begins on January 31st and runs through March 3rd, 2017.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

REVIEW DISCLAIMER

This blog was founded on the premise to write honest reviews, to the best of my ability, no matter who from, where from and/or how the book was obtained, and will continue to do so, even if it is through PICT or PBP.
DISCLAIMER

I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me, in exchange for my honest review.
No items that I receive are ever sold…they are kept by me, or given to family and/or friends.
ADDENDUM

I do not have any affiliation with Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble. I am an IndieBound affiliate. I am providing link(s) solely for visitors that may be interested in purchasing this Book/EBook.

Feb 142017
 

The Riverman

by Alex Gray

on Tour January 9 – February 15, 2017

Synopsis:

The Riverman by Alex Gray

Fans of atmospheric police procedurals will love watching Glasgow vividly come to life with the shocking twists and turns that have made Alex Gray an international bestseller

When a dead body is fished out of Glasgow’s River Clyde the morning after an office celebration, it looks like a case of accidental death. But an anonymous telephone call and a forensic toxicology test give Detective Chief Inspector William Lorimer reason to think otherwise. Probing deeper into the life and business of the deceased accountant, a seemingly upright member of the community, Lorimer finds only more unanswered questions.

What is the secret his widow seems to be concealing? Was the international accounting firm facing financial difficulties? What has become of the dead man’s protégé who has disappeared in New York? And when another employee is found dead in her riverside flat these questions become much more disturbing. Lorimer must cope not only with deceptions from the firm, but also with suspicions from those far closer to home . . .

MY REVIEW

5 stars

This book was SO good! First time I read anything by this author but she is now on my “authors to read” list.

The story and suspense flowed throughout with a cast of characters that were rich in substance. The setting, even though I have never been to Scotland, could picture it with the author’s description of her written words.

Murders, betrayals, savory characters with secrets, disappearance, relationships both good and bad and much more. I had a hard time putting this one down.

And to my pleasure, as I turned the last page, learned that Ms. Gray’s next book, PITCH BLACK will be out in March of this year. Can’t wait!!!!

REVIEW DISCLAIMER

This blog was founded on the premise to write honest reviews, to the best of my ability, no matter who from, where from and/or how the book was obtained, and will continue to do so, even if it is through PICT or PBP.
DISCLAIMER

I received a copy of this book, at no charge to me, in exchange for my honest review.
No items that I receive are ever sold…they are kept by me, or given to family and/or friends.
ADDENDUM

I do not have any affiliation with Amazon.com or Barnes & Noble. I am an IndieBound affiliate. I am providing link(s) solely for visitors that may be interested in purchasing this Book/EBook.

Book Details:

Genre: Police Procedurals
Published by: Witness Impulse
Publication Date: January 10th 2017
Number of Pages: 368
ISBN: 0062659138 (ISBN13: 9780062659132)
Series: A DCI Lorimer Novel, #4
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Barnes & Noble 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Read an excerpt:

PROLOGUE

April

THE RIVERMAN

The riverman knew all about the Clyde. Its tides and currents were part of his heritage. His father and others before him had launched countless small craft from the banks of the river in response to a cry for help. Nowadays that cry came in the form of a klaxon that could waken him from sleep, the mobile phone ringing with information about where and when. It wouldn’t be the first time that he’d pulled someone from the icy waters with only a hasty oilskin over his pajamas.

This morning, at least, he’d been up and doing when the call came. The body was over by Finnieston, past the weir, so he’d had to drive over the river towing a boat behind him on the trailer. He was always ready. That was what this job was all about: prompt and speedy response in the hope that some poor sod’s life could be saved. And he’d saved hundreds over the years, desperate people who were trying to make up their mind to jump off one of the many bridges that spanned the Clyde or those who had made that leap and been saved before the waters filled their lungs.

George Parsonage had been brought up to respect his river. Once it had been the artery of a great beating heart, traffic thronging its banks, masts thick as brush-wood. The tobacco trade with Virginia had made Glasgow flourish all right, with the preaching of commerce and the praising of a New World that was ripe for plucking. The names of some city streets still recalled those far-off days. Even in his own memory, the Clyde had been a byword for ships. As a wee boy, George had been taken to the launch of some of the finer products of Glasgow’s shipbuilding industry. But even then the river’s grandeur was fading. He’d listened to stories about the grey hulks that grew like monsters from the deep, sliding along the water, destined for battle, and about the cruise liners sporting red funnels that were cheered off their slipways, folk bursting with pride to be part of this city with its great river.

The romance and nostalgia had persisted for decades after the demise of shipbuilding and cross-river ferries. Books written about the Clyde’s heyday still found readers hankering after a time that was long past. The Glasgow Garden Festival in the eighties had prompted some to stage a revival along the river and more recently there had been a flurry of activity as the cranes returned to erect luxury flats and offices on either side of its banks. Still, there was little regular traffic upon its sluggish dark waters: a few oarsmen, a private passenger cruiser and the occasional police launch. Few saw what the river was churning up on a daily basis.

As he pushed the oars against the brown water, the riverman sent up a silent prayer for guidance. He’d seen many victims of despair and violence, and constantly reminded himself that each one was a person like himself with hopes, dreams and duties in different measure. If he could help, he would. That was what the Glasgow Humane Society existed for, after all. The sound of morning traffic roared above him as he made his way downstream. The speed of response was tempered by a need to row slowly and carefully once the body was near. Even the smallest of eddies could tip the body, filling the air pocket with water and sending it down and down to the bottom of the river. So, as George Parsonage approached the spot where the body floated, his oars dipped as lightly as seabirds’ wings, his eyes fixed on the shape that seemed no more than a dirty smudge against the embankment.

The riverman could hear voices above but his eyes never left the half-submerged body as the boat crept nearer and nearer. At last he let the boat drift, oars resting on the rowlocks as he finally drew alongside the river’s latest victim. George stood up slowly and bent over, letting the gunwales of the boat dip towards the water. Resting one foot on the edge, he hauled the body by its shoulders and in one clean movement brought it in. Huge ripples eddied away from the side as the boat rocked upright, its cargo safely aboard.

The victim was a middle-aged man. He’d clearly been in the water for some hours so there was no question of trying to revive him. The riverman turned the head this way and that, but there was no sign of a bullet hole or any wound that might indicate a sudden, violent death. George touched the sodden coat lightly. Its original camel colour was smeared and streaked with the river’s detritus, the velvet collar an oily black. Whoever he had been, his clothes showed signs of wealth. The pale face shone wet against the pearly pink light of morning. For an instant George had the impression that the man would sit up and grasp his hand, expressing his thanks for taking him out of the water, as so many had done before him. But today no words would be spoken.There would be only a silent communion between the two men, one dead and one living, before other hands came to examine the corpse.

George grasped the oars and pulled away from the embankment. Only then did he glance upwards, nodding briefly as he identified the men whose voices had sounded across the water. DCI Lorimer caught his eye and nodded back. Up above the banking a couple of uniformed officers stood looking down. Even as he began rowing away from the shore, the riverman noticed a smaller figure join the others. Dr. Rosie Fergusson had arrived.

‘Meet you at the Finnieston steps, George,’ Lorimer called out.

The riverman nodded briefly, pulling hard on the oars, taking his charge on its final journey down the Clyde.

Excerpt from The Riverman by Alex Gray. Copyright © 2017 by Alex Gray. Reproduced with permission from HarperCollins | WitnessImpulse. All rights reserved.

Author Bio:

Alex Gray

Alex Gray was born and educated in Glasgow. After studying English and Philosophy at the University of Strathclyde, she worked as a visiting officer for the Department of Health, a time she looks upon as postgraduate education since it proved a rich source of character studies. She then trained as a secondary school teacher of English.

Alex began writing professionally in 1993 and had immediate success with short stories, articles, and commissions for BBC radio programs. She has been awarded the Scottish Association of Writers’ Constable and Pitlochry trophies for her crime writing.

A regular on the Scottish bestseller lists, she is the author of thirteen DCI Lorimer novels. She is the co-founder of the international Scottish crime writing festival, Bloody Scotland, which had its inaugural year in 2012.

Connect with Alex Gray on her Website 🔗 & on Twitter 🔗.

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Feb 142017
 

The Wages of Sin

Bo Brennan

February 14, 2017 Book Blast

Synopsis:

The Wages of Sin by Bo Brennan

What’s done in the dark will be brought to the light.

For overworked firefighter Gray Davies, an emergency call-out to the scene of a horrific hit-and-run is all in a day’s work . . . until the terrified Asian victim disappears, leaving her blood on his hands and unanswered questions on his lips.

For his sister, Detective India Kane, it’s an added complication in a far more sinister crime – a series of brutal murders the missing hit-and-run victim could hold the key to solving. With a mutilated corpse on her patch, and the dead woman’s identity shrouded in secrecy, India’s set on a collision course with a deadly, unknown enemy.

Her lover, Detective Chief Inspector AJ Colt, is well acquainted with the enemy – courtesy of a divisive high-profile case, he’s currently public enemy #1. As cultures clash, simmering tensions explode, bringing terror and bloodshed to the streets, and placing Colt firmly in the sights of some of the country’s most dangerous and deranged individuals.

When one of them brings their work home, nothing will ever be the same again – for the wages of sin . . . is death.

Book Details:

Genre: Crime Thriller, Police Procedural
Published by: Bo Brennan
Publication Date: January 14th 2017
Number of Pages: 422
ASIN: B01N63XJ8V
Series: A Detective India Kane & AJ Colt Crime Thriller
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Read an excerpt:

Monday, 5th March

Winchester

Her vision blurred as her gloved hands fumbled with the combination lock securing her bike. She swiped at her eyes, kidding herself it was the brightness of the morning making them run.

It wasn’t, it was self-pity.

She didn’t want to go back there, not today. The constant drunken comings and goings were becoming increasingly unnerving as more workers arrived. Naz had sympathised, but she couldn’t help. Couldn’t make it better, easier, or safer. With property prices high and funds low, she knew she should be grateful for a job and a home, but today she was struggling. Today she wanted more.

She wanted a life.

She wasn’t sure she could stand this one. Her breath caught in her throat as the emptiness and isolation she faced overwhelmed her.

The first one is the worst one,” Naz had said, hugging her as she tied the knitted scarf around her neck. “Be brave.”

She wanted to be brave, as brave as Naz, but she felt weak and lonely and lost. Discreetly dabbing her eyes with her new scarf, she took a furtive glance back at the building. Naz stood at the window, watching her. With a half-hearted smile, she dropped her backpack at her feet to fasten her bicycle helmet. Naz smiled back and pressed a hand to the glass. In the time it took to pick up her backpack and hook it over her shoulders, Naz had gone.

With a heavy, resigned sigh, she pushed her bike down the long shingle drive to the entrance gates. Once outside she propped the bike against the kerb and cautiously glanced up and down the quiet tree-lined avenue – almost jumped out of her skin when a car door slammed somewhere up ahead. Seeing a blue light poking up from the row of parked cars, she pressed herself into the shadow of a tall oak tree, heart stuttering in her chest.

Her eyes followed the police officer as he strolled across the road and let himself into a house.

he didn’t know a police officer lived there. She didn’t know she’d been holding her breath either, until it juddered from her body when the door shut behind him.

Hands trembling, she drew a deep, steadying breath, mounted her bike and set out for the short journey home.

Home. Memories stabbed at her heart and stung at her eyes.

She shook them away as she cycled onto the main road and into the safety of the crowded morning traffic, feeling her shoulders finally relax. Relaxation was dangerous. Naz said it would get her killed. The words echoed in her head, causing her body to tighten once more. Gritting her teeth, she pedalled harder. Kept her head down as she passed the last of the picturesque shop fronts adorned with nice things she’d never own, and concealing aisles she’d never browse. She hated this life. Wished so much that she could go back, back to before she knew. But now that she did know, back wasn’t an option. Her only option was forward. Her only option was to run.

At first, the angry chorus of blaring horns seemed normal background noise, the same as every Monday morning approaching the Winchester bottleneck. It was the sound of a high revving engine that had her glancing over her shoulder to glimpse a white van pushing aggressively through the traffic.
Her mouth went dry.

A white van. There were probably millions of them, billions even.

It was probably nothing, just the bog standard enemy of regular road users trying to get ahead, but she never knew when or where they would come for her. And she knew what they’d done. Knew what they were capable of.

As a precaution, she bumped her bike out of the bus lane and onto the pavement, meandering slowly and carefully, wary of the pedestrians heading her way. Behind her she heard the prolonged guttural torque of an engine racing at breaking point. A split second later, a single heartbeat, her world span upside down in a silent slow motion strobe of black and white as she rotated endlessly past trees filtering sunlight.

This is it, she thought, spinning through the air. This is The End.

It wasn’t how she’d imagined it to be. And she’d imagined it a million times. Thought it would be painful. They’d promised it would be painful. They’d given her every graphic gory detail of how her end would be.

But it was nothing like they’d promised.

A serene sense of calm engulfed her as she closed her eyes and accepted her fate, her everlasting freedom.

Excerpt from The Wages of Sin by Bo Brennan. Copyright © 2017 by Bo Brennan. Reproduced with permission from Bo Brennan. All rights reserved.

Author Bio:

Bo Brennan is a ‘Crime Thriller’ writer who has lived and worked in various locations. None were exotic.

Bo’s favourite past times are reading, writing, and eating. Unfortunately, the three combined do nothing for the waistline so moving about occasionally is a must.

Bo’s debut novel, STEALING POWER, is the first in a series of chilling crime thrillers featuring British Detectives India Kane and AJ Colt.

BABY SNATCHERS is the second.

THE WAGES OF SIN is the third.

Bo’s books can be read in sequence or independently . . . but are probably best read with the lights on.

Catch Up With Bo on Goodreads, Twitter 🔗, & Facebook 🔗!

 

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Giveaway:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Bo Brennan. There will be 5 winners of one (1) eBook copy of The Wages of Sin by Bo Brennan. The giveaway begins on February 12th and runs through February 22nd, 2017.

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