Tag Archives: Thriller

The Contract – between heaven and earth

I’m really excited to have John and Gwen stop by today. I had the honor of being a beta reader on this story, and I think you guys are going to like it.

The CONTRACT between heaven and earth

By John W. Howell & Gwen M. Plano

Thank you, Craig, for inviting us to join you today. We are super excited to be featured on your blog where some of the most imaginative writing takes place. Also, we are so thrilled to meet Lisa Burton. We’ve wanted to try on The Hat, but we promised to be on our best behavior and besides who knows what could happen if we did. Thanks again.

The Contract

Available on Kindle and Paperback

Kindle priced at $0.99 for the introduction.

The CONTRACT is a different story for writers John W. Howell and Gwen M. Plano. For either of them, it is their first attempt at co-authorship. After a year of Hurricane Harvey and other challenges, they have created, what they have termed, an inspirational thriller that bridges heaven and earth.

Here is the blurb:

The earth is threatened with a catastrophic political event which could result in international warfare and destroy all life on the planet. In heaven, a divine council decides that extraordinary measures are essential. They call for an intervention that involves two souls returning to earth. The chosen two sign a contract that they will work to avert the disaster.

Brad Channing, a Navy SEAL, and Sarah O’Brien, a teacher, become heaven’s representatives on earth. The story follows them as they individually and then together face overwhelming obstacles and eventually end up on a strategic Air Force base in California. It is there that they discover a conspiracy to assassinate the President of the United States. The terrorists have a plan for global dominance, and they are determined to complete their mission. Although military leadership appears to have the President’s best interests at heart, it is not clear who can be trusted and who should be feared. The action is rough and tumble as Brad and Sarah try to figure out the culprits for the plot that will turn into a worldwide conflagration unless stopped.

If you enjoy thrillers, this is one with enough twists and adventure to keep you riveted and guessing. If you like your thriller along with a good romance, Brad and Sarah’s initial attraction and eventual love will sustain you as they live out their heavenly and earthly desires.

Trailer

Here is an excerpt.

After a few moments of silence, the general got up and walked over to a double set of windows. He pulled on his chin and appeared taken aback by the information. Then he turned to face Brad, crossed his arms, and leaned back on the window.

“Do you know who arrives in four days, Sailor?”

“No, sir.”

“The President of the United States.”

Brad gulped. “Oh, my God. They sent me here because the bomb has something to do with the President?”

“Sailor, when you went on an op, wasn’t every detail orchestrated?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Didn’t you have diversions in place, to sidetrack the guards?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Your SUV is set to explode at zero-ten-hundred hours in four days. The President will address the base at that time in the ball field. The entire Reconnaissance Wing will congregate on that ball field. Do you understand?”

“I do, sir. Equipped with our nation’s most advanced aircraft, the Reconnaissance Wing provides for our national security.”

“Sailor—” The general smiled. “You may have thought you’d have a few days of vacation here, but you’ll work with me now.”

“Yes, sir. Whatever you need, sir.”

Authors Bio.

John Howell Head shotGwen's headshot

John began his writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller fiction novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL, introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the adventure, while the final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016. The last, Circumstances of Childhood is a family life thriller story and launched October 2017. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Port Aransas, Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

John’s other books.

Available on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/author/johnwhowell

Gwen had a lengthy career in higher education, and it was there that she published her first book, Beyond Boundaries, for students interested in volunteer work in developing countries. After she retired, she wrote her award-winning memoir, Letting Go into Perfect Love.

Gwen lives in Branson, Missouri with her husband.

Gwen’s Books.

Available on Amazon at https://amzn.to/2wdXsrn

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Sins of the Fathers, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Don’t touch that dial! You’ve landed on Lisa Burton Radio. The only show that brings you interviews with the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and my special guest today is the owner of a small pub in Montreal. “Welcome to the show Charlene Butler.”

“Hi, Lisa. Thank you for having me today, and please call me Charlie.”

“It’s okay to say the name of your pub. Might bring in a few people.”

“Great idea! I own Butler’s Pub on Drummond Street in Downtown Montreal. The nicest pub in the neighborhood.”

“Charlie, you’re here today because there is a strange string of events in your life. Tell us about that, please.”

“Strange is a good word. Worrisome, scary, terrifying would also be good words. It started innocently enough. I received an anonymous letter in the mail from someone named Vincent, saying he’d been watching me, and we should get together for a chat. I didn’t think much of it until I got another one, with the same handwriting, from someone named Amy, saying she had been watching me, and we should get together and compare lives.”

“That’s kind of off-putting. What did you do?”

“Frank insisted I hire a private investigator. Frank is my bartender, but he’s also my best buddy, and he gets a little protective at times. I usually don’t like being fussed over, but in this case, Frank was right. I had already gone to the police, and they weren’t interested in putting too much time into a couple of mysterious letters.”

“Did you? Hire the PI, I mean.”

“I did. Some guy named Simm. I wasn’t too keen at first. I’m very busy, and I didn’t have time for all his questions. And, I really didn’t appreciate him prying into my past and the lives of my family and friends, especially when he’s so secretive about his life. But, he’s grown on me.”

“Now that’s interesting. Sounds like you’re kind of interested in him beyond your current problem.”

“What? No, not at all. I mean I guess some women would find him attractive, if they like that tall, dark, laid-back, lanky look. Not that I noticed, but I just…maybe we could move on to another question.”

“And did Simm turn up any helpful evidence?”

“He did. Actually, a lot of what he turned up was stuff I already knew, but I didn’t think it was something he needed to know. As usual, he disagreed with me. Anyway, he found out about how I became the owner of the pub. You see, it used to belong to Jim O’Reilly, who was a close family friend and mentor, like a second father to me. He taught me everything I know about running a bar. He was a very kind and generous man, and I don’t like people thinking otherwise. His connection to the Irish Mafia was a mistake and he paid for it. I’m sure he didn’t realize what he had gotten himself into. Jim’s past has nothing to do with the threats I’ve been getting.”

“You mean, like the mysterious letters?”

“Yeah, it started out as letters, but then I got a package. That was gross. I flipped my lid when I opened it up and out came a bag filled with organs. I’m talking livers and hearts, that kind of thing. It was terrible. They turned out to be sheep organs, but I still get chills just thinking about it.”

“You mean like guts and stuff? Maybe it’s time to call the police in.”

“Lisa, we talked to the police when I got the letters, and also when I got the package, and again when my apartment door was smeared with fake blood, but they just spun their wheels.”

“What did you do?”

“Simm did his thing. He contacted people, and visited people. He even made a visit to a prison to talk to some Mafia guy. He finally got us set up for a meeting with Marty Sullivan, the head of the Montreal Irish Mafia. Well, I say us, but actually it was just supposed to be him. I convinced him I had to be there too. Maybe coerced would be a better word than convinced. To tell you the truth, I know which buttons to push to get my way with Simm. He never sees me coming.

Anyway, in the end, Simm wouldn’t have gotten anywhere with Marty if I hadn’t been there. We hit it off right from the start. Marty barely noticed Simm. The guy was a bit cryptic though. Told us we had to go to Dublin and find a guy named Aidan Connelly. We have no idea what that’s about. But, honestly, you’d think a criminal mastermind would be heartless, but he was very upset about Harley’s kidnapping.”

“Wait, who’s Harley?”

“Harley’s my baby. He’s the most adorable little pug. I’ve had him for six years. He goes everywhere with me, and has his own little bed at the pub. Everybody in the neighborhood knows him and loves him. He’s so irresistible.

“Anyway, someone kidnaped him. I’m sorry. I’m getting choked up, but I still can’t even think about it without getting upset. He was gone for days. We knew it was the person who was sending me the letters, and the bloody organs…God, when I get my hands on him…and I will someday…I’ll show him what I can do with organs.”

“Now that pisses me off. Animals are innocent, and should be left out of things.”

“We’re on the same page, Lisa. So now, we’re off to Dublin. Again, Simm wanted to go on his own, and again, he found out I have no intention of letting him go without me. One of these days he’ll learn to not even bother trying. Simm seems to be an exceptionally slow learner.”

“I hope you’re going to be careful about this. Whoever is behind all of it sounds dangerous to me.”

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned. But, I feel safe with Simm. He’s an ex-cop, you know. Even though I don’t like to feed his ego, I have confidence in him, and if things get dangerous, I’ll follow his lead.”

“That sounds smart, and in more ways than one. Charlie, I could talk about this all day, but we’re out of time. I wish you all the best, and I hope Harley is okay too. Any last comments for our listeners today?”

“I’d just like to thank everyone for the support they gave me when things were rough. And, if the mystery man is listening, I want you to know that we’ll find you, and you’ll be sorry you ever laid hands on my pup. For everyone else, drop by the pub someday and say hi. Thank you, Lisa, for being such a great host. I love your show!”

“You can learn more about Charlie, and Harley’s plight in the book, Sins of the Fathers, by A. J. McCarthy. I’ll post all the pertinents on the website after I go off the air.

“Don’t forget to use those sharing buttons today. I’m sure A. J. and Charlene would do it for you, when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

Charlene Butler, a.k.a. Charlie, is beautiful, independent, and a successful pub owner in downtown Montreal, but prefers not to discuss her past, or the main reason for her success. When she anonymously receives strange letters and the police don’t show an interest in the case, she is convinced by Frank, her best friend, to hire a private investigator to help her solve the mystery. However, PI Simm seems to have a few secrets of his own.

Charlie and Simm join forces when the harassment escalates from letters to explicit threats. Their investigation leads them from the safety of her home, through Montreal’s underworld, to organized crime in Dublin, Ireland. What they discover contradicts Charlie’s most fundamental beliefs in herself and ultimately makes her doubt her own character.

Pick up your copy of Sins of the Fathers

“A taut, masterly-written novel of suspense, adventure, and romance!” – David Lucero, author of Big Jim

“McCarthy has the thriller genre down to a science” – Steve Taintor, NetGalley reviewer

“Sins of the Fathers is an excellent who-done-it with great timing, personable characters and a tight story line. A. J. McCarthy brings us a novel that is difficult to put down..” – Bonnie Reed Frye, NetGalley reviewer

The author can be found living near Quebec City, Canada, and when she isn’t working as Vice-President of Finance for a manufacturing company, she will be writing, thinking about writing, or wishing she was writing. She lives with her husband of many, many years, and her Pug/Shih Tzu mix. Her two young adult daughters have flown the coop, but check in every once in a while just to let her know they’re still alive.

Website:  www.ajackmccarthy.com

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

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ajackmccarthy

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/a.j._mccarthy/

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.ca/ajmccarthy0125

Amazon:   https://www.amazon.com/Sins-Fathers-J-McCarthy-ebook/dp/B0789R8YBG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1520458493&sr=8-1&keywords=sins+of+the+fathers+by+a.j.+mccarthy

Black Rose Writing:  http://www.blackrosewriting.com/mysterydetective/sinsofthefathers?rq=sins%20of%20the%20fathers

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Airports, NOLA, Hacked

Yesterday was a flight day for me. I’m at a conference in New Orleans for my paycheck job. This is one of those weeks where I’m going to miss things. If you get a like from me, that might be as good as it gets. I’m here with all of my bosses, and my time is theirs.

I kind of like airports. They make for the best people watching. Everyone has a little bit of stress, and that helps reveal character. One example is the guy in Denver who decided to jump off the people mover. You know, those George Jetson things that are like a flat escalator. He vaulted over the rail, which also moves, fell down, and scattered electronic devices everywhere.

The best one was a lady. She had thick permed hair that hung to the points of her shoulders. Either from dye or the perm, it was burnt looking at the ends. She was notable in that her posture was to hold her head out in front of everything else. Her nose would arrive in a room before the rest of her. She was a dark brunette. The whole appearance gave her the image of a fluffy vulture. She would make a great character.

I met up with all the rest of the Idahoans before dinner. We went to a place that had a fried fish menu. Honestly, I could have gotten the same thing in Boise. My crowd needs to be a bit more adventurous. I can show them some places, but I’m at their mercy.

While in the Boise airport, I started reading Hacked, by Sue Coletta. I finished it in the air on my way to Denver.

This thing is an intense thrill ride, and it’s a good stepping stone into the kind of books Sue writes. It’s novella length, so it won’t take you long to finish it, and honestly, you won’t want to put it down.

I am starting to really love the novella length. I just think as we get more and more pressed for time, it has a place in our lives. Judging from the reaction to my own novella, some of you must feel the same way.

I’m pressed for time right now, so here is a link to Sue’s book. Hacked.

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A Dangerous Love Affair, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Welcome to this week’s edition of Lisa Burton Radio, the only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and with me today is John Williams, not the famous composer, but an author. “Welcome to the show, John.”

“Thanks and Wow. I must say it’s a pity you’re a robot, you look gorgeous.”

“My bio says you’re a frustrated author. I think you’ll be in good company among our listeners. What kind of stories do you write?”

“I wrote what I thought an interesting action/adventure story, but the lack of sales says otherwise. I attended a book launch in London hoping to find a publishing agent to represent me. Although unsuccessful, my dismay turned into incredible joy. While I sat at the bar drowning my sorrows, to my astonishment, Sally Johnston a famous and I might add a gorgeous looking author came up and started talking with me.”

“Sounds like she struck a chord with you. What kind of books does she write?”

“Erotica…”

“Hooo-boy. I’ll bet she’s a fun one.”

“That’s for sure. I first thought she might be of help with my writing. To my astonishment, she invited me to join her for lunch. Although twelve years older, I found myself attracted to her and she with me. After a day out together, I was both shocked and delighted when she invited me to spend the weekend with her at her house in Guildford. That was a weekend I will never forget. It was the start of what became a torrid love affair. We later went on holiday to Thailand where we had a fabulous time. It was here that to her surprise, I went down on one knee and proposed to her.”

“Sounds pretty serious to me. It also sounds better than a few more sales.”

“The possible increase in books sales is one thing, but our engagement turned into a complete nightmare.”

“A nightmare? How?”

“There’s this guy, Antonio, he and Tara were once lovers until he cheated on her and hit her. She told me all about him. I thought him a figure from the past so did not think any more about him. I never realized I was making a huge mistake in thinking so. However, I had a couple of life-threatening car incidents and was lucky not to have suffered more severe injuries than I did. Anyway, after returning home from our holiday in Thailand and planning our engagement party, I had to leave Sally and go up to London. While there, she disappeared. It seems a large Mercedes car with foreign plates was seen in her street around the time she vanished. I may be wrong, but I can only think of Antonio as the one most likely to have taken her. He wanted her back, lives in Italy, so the car with foreign plates could well be his.”

“Have you told any of this to the authorities?”

“Of course, It was my policeman friend Paul whose enquiries revealed the news about the Mercedes. He had the Italian police go to his villa up in the Alps to see if she was there. This was a waste of time. The Italian police believe Antonio to be a highly respected businessman. He also gives them generous donations whenever they have a charity event. Despite his denials, I feel sure Antonio is behind the disappearance. Like me, all her friends are worried stiff about her. They had thought she was somewhere with me.”

“So what are you going to do?”

“I’m going to Italy to check for myself if she is there or not. I have to find her before I go crazy with worry.”

“I’m sure I speak for all of our listeners today when I wish you the best outcome. I’m so sorry for your situation and hope you can help. Any last comments for our listeners today.”

“Just that no matter what it takes, I will find Sally and bring her home. She is my life and soulmate.”

“You can read all about John in the novel A Dangerous love Affair, by Colin Guest. I’ll post all the deets on the website after we go off the air.

“You can help John and Colin out today by using those sharing links at the end of the post. For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

A romantic and erotic love story about John and Tara, two authors who fall in love.  Their romance is put in danger by Tara’s ex-lover Antonio. After his life-threatening attempts on John’s life come to nothing, he kidnaps Tara. Dramatic events occur high in the Alps before the couple safely return to England. During their engagement party, a publishing agent expressing an interest in the book John is writing. Along with their forthcoming marriage, this news makes the couple’s future look set for joy and happiness.

Get your copy here.

As an expat, Colin Guest has worked in fifteen countries and lived a life most only dream.

Colin loves writing and has written six books. His latest is a short action/ adventure story entitled “Impending  Disaster.” In conjunction with Voyage Media, Colin has written a pilot episode based on his memoir Follow in the Tigerman’s Footsteps. Voyage think this could be suitable as the basis for a television series. Apart from his books, Colin has had articles published in various online magazines, with one published in Nexas, a UK expat magazine. Colin also writes poetry, with several in the final four in competitions, and one made into a film. He took part in a live American radio show and did a one-hour podcast, re his writing, and taken part in several online interviews. A local newspaper in his hometown of Plymouth in England, UK, published an article on Colin and his writing.

You can find Colin at the following locations:

https://wwwcolinguest992@gmail.com

https://www.twitter.com/Tigermanguest

https://www.amazon.com/author/colinguest

https://www.facebook.com/tigerman55

https://www.pininterest.com/colinguest9

https://www.google.com/+ColinGuest

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9857414

https://www.linkedin.com/in/colin-john-guest

https://www.tigerman74.wordpress.com

https://www.colinguestauthor.com

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Circumstances of Childhood, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Welcome to this week’s edition of Lisa Burton Radio. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and we’re waiting for a very special caller. While doing that, let me ask you something.

How would you feel if you were accused of something you didn’t do? What if the ramifications were beyond serious? Would you rely upon the system to get it right? You only have so much energy and time. Would you focus on proving your innocence, or would you try to find the actual culprit?

Oh, my phone lit up. “Hello, this is Lisa Burton.”

“You are receiving a collect call from the Suffolk County Jail. Do you accept the charges?”

“Yes, please.”

“Hello. Is this Lisa? Please forgive the collect call. I didn’t know when we scheduled this interview that I would still be in jail.”

“Yes, Greg it’s me. Don’t worry about the call. I’m sure you will have some interesting information behind the fact you are in jail. For our listeners, this is Greg Petros. Can you give us a bit of your personal background?”

“First of all, Lisa. I’m totally embarrassed having to call you from a public phone in jail. I was to have a bail hearing this morning and it was postponed so I need to spend the night. More games by the District Attorney to get me to say I’m guilty. He accused me of hiding funds and revoked my original bail. Secondly, I’m not too sure what your listeners want to hear about me.”

“I understand how you feel especially in your current position. Okay, I’ll do it. Greg is a football guy at heart. He was a Heisman Trophy winner in college and went on to quarterback the New England Patriots for ten years. After that he became a highly successful sports commentator.

“Greg wanted to do some good with all the money he earned, so he started a new company called Petros Investments, with worldwide clients. So, Greg, how do we go from there to Suffolk County lockup?”

“Oh man, Lisa you don’t beat around the bush. Well, I have to say direct questions are very appropriate given what happened. As you mentioned, I started an equity fund. I started by putting in my own money and then attracted a whole bunch of the people I knew. I had some very important and wealthy friends.

“The fund grew to over a billion dollars under investment. Our objective was to invest other people’s money and be able to sleep at night. I guess about a month ago I got a heads up from my financial guy that the SEC had some findings on a routine audit. They called in the Justice Department and I was hit with an indictment on twenty-three counts of mail fraud, securities fraud and insider trading.

“All this over a so called mishandled twenty million in funds. Hell …oh excuse me. I should know not to use that word on the radio. Anyway, even if there was twenty million missing it was probably my money. I put a hundred million into the company. Of course, that is academic since once the news of the indictment got out, all my so-called friends pulled their money and the firm tanked. All for what? Some accusation that I mishandled the funds. I haven’t even been to trial yet and I’ve been punished as if I’m guilty. I’m not. Guilty that is. I’m sorry Lisa. I haven’t had much sleep over the last few days and it is looking worse by the hour. I shudder to think of closing my eyes in this place.”

“That has to be tough. Are you getting any support from outside?”

“My daughter Constance has been frantic since she heard what happened. She has decided to stay in my house in the Boston area for the duration. She lived in New York and tells me she can work anywhere. I also have a terrific lawyer. He used to be the corporate council but has been hired by the law firm defending me. Finally, my oldest friend, Keith who I grew up with showed up. He and I were like brothers. His parents adopted me when mine passed away. He is giving me moral support and excellent advice.”

“Keith sounds like a great friend. Maybe he can run down some leads for you or something.”

“Keith and I were in college together as well as childhood friends. We revolutionized the game of football. Stuff taken for granted now like quick huddles and option plays we were pulling off every week. One night we went to a party. Neither of us liked to drink but on the way home we were hit by a drunk driver. I was driving and tried to avoid the accident. I yelled to God to help me find a way out. There was no way out and we crashed head on. Keith hit the dash with such force that er um he was killed”

“Wait a minute, you’re talking to a dead guy? I need to download The Sound for some of these shows. You know The Sound, from Law and Order? I could play it at moments like this. What did they do to you in there?”

“You just made me think of the first time I heard the cell door lock. I thought about the Sound myself. I think I keep hearing that dun, dun, dun too. With Keith it isn’t like that. I have to admit sometimes I think I’m just making his presence up. Keith first came to me when I thought all was lost. He told me this fabulous story about someone he calls The Leader. He tells me the afterlife is about earning the right to be in the presence of The Leader. He even told me he knows who hacked my computer and took the twenty million, but he can’t tell me. He says there is a time continuum that can’t be altered. He has been forbidden to interfere. I understand his predicament and want him to get to the goal he seeks. He can help but can’t alter history.”

“It all sounds a bit like helping Clarence get his wings. I mean, it would be nice to help Keith, but you have troubles of your own.”

“Your wings analogy is spot on. I love Greg and want him to progress and would never ask him to violate the sacred instructions he has been given. Brothers are like that, Lisa.”

“So how is the trial going?”

“I get this feeling that the prosecutor is out to make a name for himself. I can imagine getting a guilty verdict on Greg Petros would be a ticket to higher office. The case all centers on whether or not I used my computer to take twenty million out of the firm. Our experts say I was hacked and had nothing to do with it. I understand they have an expert who will be on the stand tomorrow who takes the opposite position. At this point it’s very convoluted. I think it will be a matter of who the jury believes. I know I didn’t do it and that is all I know. I can’t figure out how the twenty million came up missing.”

“So. if you can’t figure it all out, maybe the prosecution can’t either. Will that help you in some way?”

“I don’t think he cares if he figures it out or not. All he can see is a former jock and rich guy who is brought to his knees by his fine legal work. He will do anything to get a conviction.”

“I wish you the best of luck, Greg. Keith too, if he’s listening out there on his cosmic radio. Any last thoughts for our listeners today?”

“Thank you so much, Lisa. I’m sorry if I sounded all in earlier but I had a life that would be the envy of most of the world and it turned to a nightmare in the blink of an eye. I think my friend Greg would advise us all to enjoy the moment since that moment is all that counts.”

“To learn more about Greg and Keith pick up the book, Circumstances of Childhood, by John W. Howell. I’ll post all the links after I go off the air.

“You can help John and Greg by using those sharing buttons today. I’m sure they’d do it for you, and John has a long history of supporting other authors. Here’s your chance to pay a little of it back.

For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton.”

***

When a former pro football star and broadcaster, now a Wall Street maven is accused of insider trading, will he be able to prove his innocence and expose those who are guilty?

Greg and his boyhood pal dreamed of big success in professional football and then later in business. Greg was the only one to live the dream. Now the founder of an investment fund Greg is faced with a routine audit finding by the SEC. The audit points to irregularities and all the tracks lead to Greg. The justice department hits him with an indictment of 23 counts of fraud, money laundering, and insider trading. His firm goes bust, and Greg is on his own.

His best friend knows he is innocent but has been ordered under penalty of eternal damnation not to help.

If you enjoy stories of riches to rags, redemption, brotherly love, and a little of the paranormal, Circumstance of Childhood will keep you riveted.

Circumstances of Childhood

Book Trailer

YouTube Book Review

John HowellJohn began his writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller fiction novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL, introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the adventure, while the final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016. His latest book Circumstances of Childhood, a thriller fiction story, was launched in October of 2017. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Port Aransas, Texas with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Cover reveal for The Gemini Connection

Teri Polen is a big supporter of mine. I recently finished her debut novel, Sarah, and gave it five stars. She’s here today to share a cover and blurb from her newest project.

***

The Gemini Connection
by Teri Polen
Paperback Release Date: May 31, 2018
E-book Release Date: June 7, 2018
Young Adult > Sci-Fi/Fantasy > Thriller

Teen twin brothers Evan and Simon Resnik are fiercely loyal to each other and share an unusual bond—they experience each other’s emotions as their own and can sense where the other is.

On their dying planet of Tage, scientists work tirelessly on its survival. Like the twins’ parents, Simon is a science prodigy, recruited at a young age to work with the brilliant creator of Scientific Innovations. To the bitter disappointment of their parents, Evan shows no aptitude or interest in science. As a Mindbender, he travels into the minds of scientists to locate buried memories, connect ideas and concepts, and battle recurring nightmares.

When Simon mysteriously disappears, Evan is plunged into a world of loss and unbearable guilt. For the first time, he can’t ‘feel’ Simon—it’s like he no longer exists. Evan blames himself. No one knows that he ignored his brother’s pleas for help on the night he went missing.

A year later, Simon is still gone. Evan lost his twin, but Tage might have lost its last hope of survival when it’s discovered that Simon’s unfinished project could be its salvation. Evan is determined to find him—somewhere—and bring Simon home. Their unusual connection might be more extraordinary than they know, and the key to locating Simon.

The Gemini Connection paperback is available for preorder at the following locations:

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
And for a discount at Black Rose Writing

You can find Teri at the following locations:

Website / Twitter / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Goodreads / Amazon

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Cusp of Night #CoverReveal

Mae Clair has a new book coming soon. To tease us along a bit, she’s sharing a blurb and cover. Check out this cool artwork.

***

Cusp of Night
by Mae Clair
Release Date: June 12, 2018
Mystery> Thriller & Suspense > Paranormal

book cover for Cusp of Night, a mystery/suspense novel by Mae Clair

BLURB:
Recently settled in Hode’s Hill, Pennsylvania, Maya Sinclair is enthralled by the town’s folklore, especially the legend about a centuries-old monster. A devil-like creature with uncanny abilities responsible for several horrific murders, the Fiend has evolved into the stuff of urban myth. But the past lives again when Maya witnesses an assault during the annual “Fiend Fest.” The victim is developer Leland Hode, patriarch of the town’s most powerful family, and he was attacked by someone dressed like the Fiend.

Compelled to discover who is behind the attack and why, Maya uncovers a shortlist of enemies of the Hode clan. The mystery deepens when she finds the journal of a late nineteenth-century spiritualist who once lived in Maya’s house—a woman whose ghost may still linger.

Known as the Blue Lady of Hode’s Hill due to a genetic condition, Lucinda Glass vanished without a trace and was believed to be one of the Fiend’s tragic victims. The disappearance of a young couple, combined with more sightings of the monster, trigger Maya to join forces with Leland’s son Collin. But the closer she gets to unearthing the truth, the closer she comes to a hidden world of twisted secrets, insanity, and evil that refuses to die . . .

ADD TO YOUR GOODREADS LIST

Connect with Mae Clair at the following haunts:

Website | Blog | Twitter | Newsletter | Facebook | Goodreads | Amazon
Other Social Links

Promotional banner for author Mae Clair with bio and author photo, spooky house as header in wash of red

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A new #romance #thriller series

Staci Troilo is here today to introduce her new series to everyone. Staci is a dear friend, a great colleague, and one hell of a writer. You guys make her feel welcome.

***

Thanks for inviting me here today, Craig. I appreciate having a chance to talk to your readers about my new novel. Hi, everybody!

Expanded Excerpt:

“What the hell are you playing at?”

“Me?” She recoiled. “What do you mean?”

“I mean these games. Hot then cold then hot again. Mad at me one minute, interested the next. You kept me up all night, and I want to know why.”

She jumped to her feet. “What are you talking about?”

“I’m talking about kissing then running. I’m talking about the fake-sleep seduction routine. I thought it might be to avoid talking to me, but I wasn’t asking you questions last night. So tell me…” He stalked toward her, but she stood her ground. Stood toe-to-toe with her, but she didn’t budge. Peered down at her, and she merely leaned back and met his gaze. “I want answers. Today. About last night. About everything.”

“Last night was what it was. I wanted—” She wanted him. But the words wouldn’t come. “I wanted comfort. But I guess that was too much to ask.”

“And the rest?”

“The rest of what?”

“Your job. Charlie. Why someone would target Tasha to get to you.”

Her stomach lurched at the mention of her best friend. “I don’t know!”

“You have to know!” He took a deep breath. When he finally spoke, his tone was softer. “Brae, people don’t get chased and shot at for no reason. Nor do their homes get trashed for fun and their best friends get run off the road on a whim. You’ve crossed the wrong person, and I need to know who. I need to know what you did. Did you steal something from someone? Learn something you shouldn’t have? Sell secrets to the wrong people?”

“Who the hell do you think I am? Mata Hari? I work at a think tank. I work crazy long hours in hermetically-sealed rooms with very few people. I have virtually no social life and definitely no clandestine one.” Her chest rose and fell with her rapid breaths, and her pulse raced.

Danny stood close enough to study her face, to look for any signs she was lying. His expression hardened.

Guess he found one.

“What do you need a hermetically-sealed room for at a think tank?”

She blinked. No good answer came to her, so she said nothing.

“What are you working on in your lab?”

Braelyn let out a low, slow breath—a breath she hadn’t realized she’d been holding. “That’s… classified.”

 ***

Blurb:

Some passwords protect more than just secrets.

Danny Caruso was glad to be back in the United States, back to his regular job. Back to his comfortable routine of all work and no play. But when his friend Mac asks a favor of him, he can’t refuse. He owes the guy everything. So he accepts the job, even though it means a twenty-four/seven protection detail guarding a particularly exacerbating—and beautiful—woman.

Braelyn Edwards is careful to stay out of the spotlight, preferring to hide in the background and skip the trappings of a vibrant social life. But her privacy is threatened when there’s an attempt on her life and a bodyguard is foisted on her. Compounding problems? He doesn’t just want to protect her. He wants to investigate every detail of her life, starting with her top-secret job.

Danny casts his sights on Charlie Park, her coworker, her partner… the one man who knows all Braelyn’s secrets. She’s frustrated by the distrust until she realizes jealousy fuels Danny’s suspicions as much as instinct and proof. One of them is right about Charlie—but by the time they figure it out, it may be too late to save their relationship. And Braelyn’s life.

Universal Purchase Link

***

Password is the first story in the Nightforce Security Series. A sequel is already in the works. The next installment will be a novella released in March as part of Susan Stoker’s Special Forces Kindle World. So if this series interests you, you won’t have long to wait.

Staci Troilo writes because she has hundreds of stories in her head. She publishes because people told her she should share them. She’s a multi-genre author whose love for writing is only surpassed by her love for family and friends, and that relationship-centric focus is featured in her work.

Connect with Staci on Social Media:

Web | Blog | Newsletter | Facebook Group | Twitter | Facebook | Other Social Media Links

 

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Body Armor on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Welcome all you secret society members and sequestered royal families. This is Lisa Burton Radio. The only show that brings you the characters from the books you love. I’m your host, Lisa the robot girl, and today we’re going to peek inside a clandestine operation that protects one of the world’s royal families.

My special guest today is Carmina Orsini. She is the maternal grandmother of the Notaro girls. They are the last living descendants of the Medici family, and someone is trying to kill them. It’s understandable that Carmina is a little bit worried. “Welcome to the show, Carmina.”

“Ciao, Lisa. Thank you for having me here today.”

“My pleasure. The bio I have says you’re particularly worried about Donni Notaro. Can you tell our listeners why?”

“Ah. My granddaughters, all of them, are strong women. Very accomplished, very smart. But they are in over their heads this time. Madonna mia, I pray for their safety. I know their heritage is supposed to be a secret, but merda, Franki’s and Jo’s stories are already out there. Their men are watching out for them. But now, Donni—she seems to be the one being targeted. Her protector, Nico Micelli, has her hidden away in Italy to keep her safe.”

“Under the circumstances, that doesn’t sound so bad. I mean, people want to hurt her.”

“That’s what has me so concerned. Not the hiding in Italy part, but the people wanting to hurt her part. It’s bad enough her father was killed by these… hooligans. And her mother was injured in an early battle and is currently in a coma. Now Donni is a target. Her father can’t help her. Her mother can’t. And I’m an ocean away. Her life is in Nico’s hands. I’m certain they are capable hands, but I still worry.”

“Still, they sound like good protectors. In desperate times, there are bound to be a few injuries and losses. I’m really sorry about your daughter.”

“Thank you. I know she’s in good hands. Mike, the leader of the Protectorate, is seeing to her care, and he’ll spare no expense. And Nico has personally assured me that my Mary is safe and well cared for. He’s a good boy, Nico is. It’s clear to me he takes his responsibilities seriously. Donni is safe with him. And I wouldn’t trust her safety to just anybody. But, cazzo, if you’ll excuse my language, for as bright as these two are, they’re blind as bats. They care for each other far past the professional level. They’re good for each other. He would make a good husband for Donnatella.”

“Carmina, I’m not without my own resources here at Lisa Burton Radio. Being a kind of supercomputer myself, I reached out and have a little surprise for you. On the phone right now is your granddaughter, Donni, and don’t worry, I scrambled the connection.”

Nonna! What are you doing, spilling our secrets on the radio? And Nico heard what you said about… being husband material. What were you thinking?”

“Don’t you sass me, young lady. I’ll speak to whomever I want, and I’ll say what I like. Your heritage isn’t as big a secret as you think, and if you weren’t so darn stubborn, you’d admit your feelings for that boy.”

That boy has a name. One you weren’t afraid to announce on the air a few minutes ago. And before you go calling me stubborn, take a good look in the mirror.”

“I don’t care for your tone. Or your implication.”

“I’m not implying anything. I’m flat out saying it—if I am stubborn, I come by it honestly. From you. And as for my tone, I’m sorry, Nonna. But I’m scared.”

“You’re with Nico. He’ll keep you safe.”

“I’m not scared for me. Not really. The guys have things under control here. I’m scared for you. You, like Mama, could be attacked to get to us. I’d feel much better if you were here, with us, under guard.”

“Bah! I’m not going to have someone fly me over to Italy and whisk me off to—”

Nonna! You’ve said more than enough! Do NOT give away our location!”

“Mi spiace. I’m just worried. For you, not me. I got carried away.”

“Carmina? Nico here. I know you’re sorry, but you’ve got to be more careful. Here on air and back at home. In fact, you shouldn’t be on air at all.”

“Nonna, you’re lucky Nico didn’t just hack Lisa’s show and shut you down.”

“Carmina. Donni’s hanging up now. Watch what you say, or I’m shutting you down. Goodbye.”

“Goodbye, Non—–-”

“Well, Lisa. It appears I’m now officially censored and can’t say anymore without my granddaughter’s protector taking you off air. He’s quite the accomplished computer genius in addition to being a stalwart warrior. I know you’re a computer in your own right, but I don’t want to cause you any trouble. I hope I didn’t make Donni’s situation worse. I just wanted to get her story out there, maybe find some support for her… not that I can reveal where she is.”

“I understand the seriousness of the situation, but it sounds like the girls are in good hands. At some point, you have to trust the Protectorate to do their jobs.”

“You’re right. I know you’re right. But I’m her grandmother. And the only family, outside of her sisters, who is in a position to help right now. Yet there’s nothing I can do. I wish I could be with her, could do something for her. I trust Nico and the Protectorate. I do. But we’re a family of hard workers. It’s not in my nature to just wait. I like to act, not react. Eh. Mi spiace. I’m babbling on and on, taking up your valuable time. And I’m sure Nico’s listening. I should go.”

“Well, thank you for being on the show today. Any last thoughts for our listeners?”

“If you’re the praying sort, please pray for Donni. For all my girls. I’m afraid they’re going to need more than the Protectorate to see them through this, and divine intervention never hurt anybody. Grazie, Lisa.”

“You can read all about Carmina and the Medici sisters in The Medici Protectorate Series, and specifically in volume three, Body Armor, by Staci Troilo. I’ll post all the pertinent links on the website.

“Take a little extra time today to use those sharing buttons. I’m sure Staci and Carmina would do it for you when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

Transformation is progress. Until it implodes.

Pursued across the globe by the forces of a shadowy, unknown enemy, the warriors of the Medici Protectorate face their most dangerous challenge yet in the defense of the Notaro sisters, the secret legacy of the ancient Medici line.

Nico Micelli shows the world a calm, mild-mannered personality, but under the surface simmers ferocious passions he struggles to suppress. To say he has a wild side is an understatement. As his work with the Brotherhood intensifies, he finds it increasingly difficult to temper his emotions. It doesn’t help that his charge continuously tests his limits.

Donni Notaro lives under Nico’s protection. She and her sisters are in constant danger simply because of their ancestry. Without the protection of the Brothers, their lives would have been forfeit long ago. But that security comes with a cost—her freedom. Essentially sequestered, she becomes Nico’s shadow, her clandestine pursuits putting both of them in peril.

To defeat their foes, Nico must not only acknowledge his wild side, he must thoroughly embrace it. But the transformation may take him down a path he can never return from.

Purchase Link

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Unintended Consequences, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa BurtonWelcome to this week’s edition of Lisa Burton Radio. The world recently learned of something the Japanese call Karoshi. This is the situation where people are worked to death. Several deaths have been labeled as Karoshi in recent weeks.

What would it take to get to that point? What goes through someone’s mind as the symptoms take over? We’re going to talk to someone who is very near that point today. “Welcome to the show, Trish Clayton.”

“Hello, Lisa. ‘Karoshi’? Is that what they call this insanity? I guess having a label for it is rather handy for some. Make no mistake, Lisa; there is nothing about this entire situation that a sane person wouldn’t have problems dealing with. I’m not certain about my ability to step back from this on a personal level, and that’s hardly a point from which to assess anything rationally, is it?”

“Let’s not be too hasty here, Trish. You’re dealing with life or death situations every day. People are being tortured and murdered in some kind of sick cat and mouse game, and everyone wants to bring the game to a conclusion. Tell us the truth, how many hours are you putting in every week? When was the last time you took a vacation?”

“The images of the victims at their time of death haunt what little sleep I’m able to grab. How many hours a day do I work? That’s blurred now, one day seems to melt into the next. I guess I get around two, maybe three hours downtime every other day. As for vacation time …! The last time I took some time off was just before the FBI team was formed to investigate the ‘Countdown’ murders. So, that would be over five years ago now. I can’t take time out, not from this. It’s not just the victims now, we just lost a fifteen-year-old boy who went to help one of whoever the hell these victims really are. He was just a kid! A brave kid with a good heart who should never have died.”

“An abduction leads to a photograph with a cryptic message. Find this person by a certain time or they will be killed. When the time passes, another photograph of the person’s severed head. Followed by another abduction which starts the cycle over again.”

“Five years worth of this and you don’t have any leads?”

“No, Lisa, you’re wrong. I have leads! All roads lead me to hell. Sheila Harrington is involved up to her dangerous smile in this situation. The toxic Ms. Harrington is about to become the Governor’s fiancé, Lisa. And, if rumor is correct, the Governor is about to throw his name in the race for the Presidency. I guess suspecting the female most likely to become the new First-Lady of the United States could gain me a few interested parties. How is she connected to the ‘Countdown Murders’? I believe she is at the very least connected via someone powerful enough to have had eighteen men executed. She’s no serial killer, not this one. Oh, I do believe her capable of murder. I also believe that she is simply the well-paid puppet of someone very powerful. Someone else is jerking her strings.”

“If not Sheila, then who?”

“Let me run a few things by you, first, okay? First up, I don’t believe in coincidences when they occur on this kind of scale. So, you’ll understand my dilemma when we discovered that not ONE of the victims existed anywhere on record, prior to two years before their deaths.

I mean nowhere … no registration of birth, no driver’s license, marriage license, no social security, Facebook or other social links. No one came forward to claim them as family when their bodies were released for burial. Only one of them was ever reported missing, that was Quentin Hammersley, the first victim. The friend that reported him gone has since been untraceable.

“There were discrepancies in our records. Vehicle and registration details had been deleted. Passports were falsified in most of the cases, sending us on a wild goose chase that distracted us for far too long.

“You need to understand, Lisa … this information had to have been altered from the inside. The FBI security access is state of the art, and a sad sign of the dangerous times we now live in. We hadn’t been hacked. Someone I knew, perhaps someone on my own team was steering this investigation in a direction away from Sheila Harrington. I began to suspect everyone. It made me sick to my stomach thinking that one of these people whose lives I’d die to protect was bent in some way … or acting under duress.

“I’m sorry … this conversation is affecting me more than I thought it would, I’m wound up pretty tight.”

“Now, Trish could your stress levels be causing a little paranoia?”

“Am I paranoid? Jesus, Lisa … I hope so! I hope to be proven wrong every hour of every day. But it’s all adding up to a really bad equation here, and the recent assassination of Director Ted Prendergast was a professional hit. We have zero leads on the shooter. Ted was my friend, Lisa! We even dated for a while before he started moving up the ranks faster than anyone we knew. Why was he silenced, had he discovered something and was about to reveal it? Or, was he operating under duress? Was he being coerced into altering FBI files?

“I didn’t go to his funeral, Lisa. I took a couple of days and headed out to where the first victim had lived and died. I found things there; things … things that I can’t begin to believe are even possible. I had to speak to somebody. I was cracking under the weight of it. The acting Director Henry Weisman is the man I chose to share everything with. Henry and I discussed it at length. He helped me hold on to my sanity. The case is now closed. On record, it’s now a cold case. Henry and I have both resigned from the bureau, and we’ll be heading up a private security company … the staff will all be FBI trained. We plan on the private security income to provide us with an income to pay for all the time we will be investing in this case … that is, and will remain our prime objective. We–”

“Trish, I hate to interrupt, but we have a caller. Go ahead caller, you’re on the air with Lisa and Trish.”

“To say any more would be a mistake, Ms. Clayton.”

“Why are you altering your voice? If you have evidence you should come forward with it.”

“Let him talk, Lisa. Go ahead caller, I’m listening.”

“No good can come of pursuing this case. People are in danger. You are in danger.”

“Is that a threat?”

“I like the color blue on you, it matches your eyes. It would be a pity to cover that pretty blue dress with your own blood.”

“Trish, you need to get to an interior room away from windows.”

“Way ahead of you, Lisa. Shit! … I need to make a call…”

“Trish? Trish? Are you there?

“If you want to find out more about Trish, pick up a copy of Acts Beyond Redemption and Acts of Betrayal by Suzanne Burke. I’ll include the purchase links on the website.

“Please help Soooz spread the work by using those sharing buttons today. She’d do it for you when your character appears on the next Lisa Burton Radio.”

***

Acts Beyond RedemptionActs Beyond Redemption:

Acts Beyond Redemption takes you on a twisted, deadly, journey.

Mike Matheson is head of a Special Task Force set up by the F.B.I to track down and apprehend the serial killers responsible for 18 brutal murders.

The team are exhausted, frustrated, and ready to burn out after almost five years and no leads.
Their nightmares are stripping them to the bone.

Nothing has prepared them for this.
Someone on the inside is deflecting their weary eyes away from an incomprehensible and shattering truth.

Who will be buried in the shattered remains of a country where freedom and honor are treasured above all things?

Just how far will those elected to protect and defend go, to keep the American dream alive?

PURCHASE “Acts Beyond Redemption” here on Amazon.com

Purchase “Acts Beyond Redemption” on AMAZON.UK

PURCHASE Acts Beyond Redemption on AMAZON.COM.AU

 

Acts of Betrayal

Acts of Betrayal:

Can one powerful man ring mankind to the brink of extinction? Time’s running out …

In this powerful sequel to Acts Beyond Redemption Nigel Cantrell is back, and he’s out for blood.
One of his team holds on precariously to life, with no guarantees of recovery.

Can those responsible drag him into a nightmare he will struggle to contain?

In a complex dual where oaths taken are forsaken, and promises made are broken beyond repair; he must seek the help of the only people he can trust, people who revere him … and, those that despise him.

Cantrell is efficient and deadly, but even he has ghosts in his past, demons that must be exorcised. And nothing is more demonic than the peril he must now face, as a one man’s maniacal thirst for revenge is uncovered.

A man so enormously powerful, with a hatred so intense, so extreme, that the possible demise of his own species means nothing to him. He will dispense his revenge as his diseased mind sees fit.

Nigel Cantrell and his team do not have failure as an option.

The fate of their country and beyond now rests in their hands.

Can they prevent the final Acts of Betrayal?

PURCHASE “Acts Of Betrayal” on AMAZON.COM

PURCHASE “Acts Of Betrayal” AMAZON. U.K

PURCHASE “Acts Of Betrayal” on AMAZON Australia.

Suzanne Burke

Suzanne Burke resides with her daughter and grandson in a small country town located hundreds- of miles to the west of her previous home in Sydney Australia.

Suzanne had long wanted to write, life interrupted and she didn’t begin her journey into the world of writing until she was in her early fifties.

Suzanne has written her memoirs under the author name of Stacey Danson, both her non-fiction books have ranked in the top 100 paid in Kindle on Amazon. “Empty Chairs” and “Faint Echoes of Laughter” continue to earn wonderful reviews.

Suzanne writes her powerful Thrillers “Acts Beyond Redemption” and “Acts of Betrayal” and her Paranormal anthology “Mind-Shaft” as S. Burke.

Her Fictional works are written under S. BURKE.

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