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You have made it all the way here, so you may as well sit down, take a minute to look around, and enjoy. What you will find, depends on the day and my mood. You just never can tell.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Side Slip, by Mike Fuller



I want to welcome Mike Fuller, the author of Side Slip his new release, to my blog this week as one of the stops along his blog tour.  Mike will be giving away a digital copy of one of his books to a randomly selected commenter.  Therefore, take a moment and say hello.


Title: Side Slip
A Sam Deland Crime Novel, Book Three
ISBN: 978-1-62420-334-3
Author: Mike Fuller

Genre: suspense
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 3

Where you can Buy at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

REVIEW: 
SIDE SLIP -- A Sam Deland crime novel. Book III
by Mike Fuller

Rating--5 
Reviewed by G. Lloyd Helm

Side Slip is not an easy read, but well worth it. There is nothing predictable about this book, but it does have a sort of familiarity. It has everything a crime novel reader could want.  There are decent plot lines, but it is character driven all the way, which is why it is sometimes hard to read. Fuller has made the characters so real that the reader sympathizes with them, even the bad guys. And he gives you a wide range of characters to choose from, Pennsylvania State Troopers, Male and Female, Florida Sheriffs, Male and Female,  Farmers that used to be Navy SEALS, Dope seller/ murderers, crooked cop/burglars, and dogs.

Side Slip is worth the read.

TAGLINE 
Cops, mobsters and murder all mixed up and no one knows where it will end. But smart, tough and lucky swirl together to push the action through the chilling story of both good guys and bad.

BLURB
Stuck in paradise and he isn’t very happy about it. Even the beautiful lady detective that gunned down the man trying to kill them both can’t get him to stay. Corporal Sam Deland wants out. Back to work leading his squad of state troopers and home where he can take up the life he had to put on hold. But Sam isn’t the only one wanting him to return. The woman he left behind is waiting for him and so is the Russian Mob. Sam’s past is catching up with him, and he doesn’t see it coming, yet. Detective Christie O’Shea, the pretty Florida cop that nursed Sam back to health won’t have the time to miss him when he’s gone. Murder is what she’s paid to solve, and she has to go after a killer that has sent shock waves deep into the police community around her. A triple play of heart stopping and heart warming suspense, action and life as Sam, his troopers and Christie all find they are in the middle of murders and mobsters. A story that twists and turns through the investigations and the lives of characters you will grow to know, to cheer and to fear. Sharp dialogue, real characters and enough drama, humor and mystery to keep the reader up late not ready to put it down yet. Another thrilling Sam Deland crime novel from the author of Sink Rate and Rope Break.

EXCERPT
The search for a hidden key did not go well. All the usual spots came up empty. Dickie went down the steps to the garage but still no luck and then back up to where Ray stood next to the front door and sighed, "Well, ain't no key. Let's get it over with."
The pry bar didn't get it done. Ray had to whack the deadbolt a couple of hard hits with the sledge before the door flew inward. Dickie started in and stopped short. He smelled cinnamon. Ray almost ran into his back. Probably one a them plug in thingys.
Dickie held up his hand and then swiveled his head back and forth, trying to adjust to the slightly brighter light inside. Dickie heard nothing except the clicking of a wall clock somewhere. He shrugged and crossed to the kitchen door at the other side of the living room. Ray split to the right and did a quick walk through of the downstairs.
They met at the foot of the stairs and Ray pointed to a metal cabinet next to the cold fireplace, "I'll start on that, give me the bar, eh?" It wasn't a real gun safe, just a thin metal locker meant to keep kids away from the guns.
Dickie handed the pry bar to Ray and started up the stairs, shining the flashlight as he moved out of the light cast by the lamp. The cash and handguns were usually in the bedrooms. There seemed to be three upstairs and a bathroom. Dickie had to piss by now and stopped to go. He started and almost pissed on his hand when he realized there was a candle in a glass jar burning on the tub rim. That appeared to be the source of the cinnamon odor and was certainly the source of big trouble.
Ray was pounding loudly on the metal cabinet downstairs, and Dickie almost shit his pants as the figure of a small woman in a bathrobe passed by in the hall just outside of the bathroom. Dickie didn't even zip up his jeans and stuck his head out of the bathroom and looked down the hall. The small woman was there leaning out to try to get a look at what was making all the noise downstairs. Dickie's blood turned to ice when she turned toward him, and he saw the black automatic in her left hand.
She hadn't seen him yet. She just stood there but then turned to go back toward the bedroom. He knew there was probably a phone there, and he couldn't let her get to it. He tried to melt into the small space between the sink and the door, and as she moved past, he stepped in behind her and grabbed at the gun.
He missed. All that police training didn't help. She yelped and turned the pistol toward him. It was not quite full dark in the hall and Dickie could see it happening and knew what was coming. Without hesitating, he swung the heavy flashlight and struck her across her left cheek. The blow emitted a sickening crunch as bone gave way to the heavy metal light. She staggered but did not go down. The gun was waving in the short space of air between them and Dickie expected it to spit flame and his death at any moment. He stepped into her and brought the flashlight down with all his strength on top of her head.
She followed the motion of the blow and crumpled onto the hallway floor. Dickie was breathing in gasps by now, but he could still hear Ray pounding metal on metal. He tried to hit the button on the flashlight to see if the woman was still conscious but his finger slipped across. The wetness puzzled him for a moment but he got the light to come on and as he played the beam down on the figure at his feet, he was surprised to see blood dripping off the end and falling through the shaft of light onto the pink bathrobe of the very dead woman beneath him.

MIKE FULLER

Mike Fuller Bio
After writing professional documents for many years, Mike has finally devoted time to his true passion, writing fiction where the story and characters come alive in the reader’s mind. While his days were filled with authoring hundreds of detailed crime reports, arrest affidavits, search warrants and grand jury presentments, he took some of his own time and devoured books by the dozens. Reading not only was a rewarding diversion, it provided him with the added education he needed to function at a high level in his profession.

This has led to the creation of Mike’s crime/suspense/detective novels Sink Rate, Rope Break and Side Slip, the first three in the Sam Deland Crime Novel series. All are expected to be published in 2015 and 2016 by Rogue Phoenix Press 

Mike writes with the real life experience that many years of law enforcement shaped and influenced. The stories may be fiction but are based on how things happen in the real world.  His books are honest and captivating novels written with a unique voice that will both chill and charm.

Mike is a veteran police detective. He did it all from rookie patrolman to Senior Special Agent. His life has been enriched by a wonderful marriage, parenting, work, flying, sailing and good books. Mike is a lifelong outdoorsman, an experienced tactical firearms instructor, champion sailplane pilot and the captain of his own sailboat. All of these skills have made his novels vivid, exciting and real. Now retired after a career with three law enforcement agencies, Mike enjoys winters writing in Naples, Florida and summers sailing, writing and researching the next novel at his rural Pennsylvania home.

Web/Blog:  http://mikefullerauthor.com
On Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/mikefullerauthor
On Twitter:  @mikefullerwrite 

NOTE:  Mike will be giving away a digital copy of one of his books to one randomly selected commenter on his blog tour.  



Monday, March 6, 2017

The Black Coach - Review

Last week I did an author post for The Black Coach.  I have read the book and decided to post a review of it as well for my readers.  If you are into Mystery and Romance, maybe you should give it a read.  Have a great week everyone.




The Black Coach
By Nickie Fleming
Review by Courtney Rene
Rating 4 Stars


Maggie Thompson, an orphan flees from an abusive household, and is then rescued by a mysterious man, Neil Harrington, but strange happenings continue to follow in her wake.  Two girls are found murdered, there is a strange black coach that is traveling the roadways at night, and a man is searching for Maggie.

The Black Coach took off and engaged the reader from the start. Maggie although struggling with life trouble at the beginning, shows herself to be a strong character and I connected with her right away.  Her inner battles and her strength, paired with her kind nature, makes you cheer her on from the other side.   Neil is a question.  Who is he?  What is he doing and is he a good guy or not?  The intrigue and the romance make for fun read.  The story stayed strong throughout and the book and kept you moving along at a nice pace.  I enjoyed the read.  The author makes believable characters and realist dialogue. The mystery and romance made for an easy and enjoyable read.  

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Black Coach, by Nickie Fleming





Title: The Black Coach
ISBN: 978-1-62420-311-4
Author: Nickie Fleming

Genre: Gothic Romance
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 3

Buy at: Rogue Phoenix Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble
NICKIE WILL GIVE AN EBOOK COPY OF ONE OF HER BOOKS TO A RANDOMLY DRAWN COMMENTER.
REVIEW:

The Black Coach
Nickie Fleming

Reviewed by Tamara White
5 Stars of 5

Abuse, Murder, Love, and the Black Coach

Nickie Fleming’s crisp and colorful words thrust the reader back into a time where horse drawn coaches were the mode of transportation and women’s dresses dragged on the ground. The author’s words give you a real sense of being there. I enjoyed the pace of the book. The book moves effortlessly through the well-defined plot. The book creates an immediate interest in the main character. From the first page the author quickly draws you into the tumultuous life of the young blonde hair woman Maggie. Maggie is a woman who possesses a quiet determination that gives her the strength she needs to defy her beginnings. From the moment you meet Maggie you want to see her make it. Neil Pickering, the man whose life becomes unexpectedly intertwined with Maggie’s, is a unique character. He is as intellectually strong and determined as he is handsome. Whenever Pickering is present his personality commands the scene. His need to understand medicine matches her need to survive. I enjoyed the gritty murders that take place in the book. The murders have a dark undertone, which left me eager to finish each page and discover who has such a thirst for death. The Black Coach plot offers its readers mystery, hope, intrigue, and a quiet love story. It is an immediate for anyone passionate about reading.


TAGLINE

The Devil is riding his black coach across the moors of Yorkshire and hunts virgins. Or is this so?

BLURB

Strange things are happening in the village of Pickering, Yorkshire. Two girls are found murdered, and there is talk about strange going-ons at night. Caught in the middle of this turmoil is Maggie Thompson, an orphan, who needs to fend for herself. Running away from an employer who maltreated her, she nearly dies during a winter storm. She is rescued by a man who lives in a nearly abandoned house. Neil Harrington has his own secrets however. Maggie will have to trust on her feelings to know what is right or wrong. And she can’t forget there is a killer on the rampage…

EXCERPT

It didn't take long before Maggie was fast asleep once again. When Martha noted her drooping head, she put a cushion behind it, to make the girl more comfortable and lastly spread a plaid over her, lest she should catch a cold.
She studied the girl for a while. Cleaned up, she already looked a lot better than the previous day. She had better talk to the master. The girl's speech was remarkable fine for a working-class child. She felt sure there was something of a mystery involved here. Perhaps thinking about this would lighten Neil's mood. He'd been mourning Lady Suzanne long enough to her liking.
Around noon her son walked into the kitchen for his lunch. He looked up when he saw the sleeping girl.
"Is she fit to come down already?" he wanted to know.
"She's not completely better," Martha told him, "but she ate all of her breakfast, and as you can see she's sleeping again. No better healer then rest, I say."
"The master asked me how she was," Amos said. "I'm glad I can tell him she's doing fine."
"Did he need you to fetch something?" Martha wanted to know. They both knew to what she was referring.
"I brought in the usual. I don't mind, though," her son acknowledged.
She nodded. "We have a good master in his lordship. No matter what other people may think, he's a decent human and I'm proud to be serving him."
"So am I," Amos agreed.
He sat down at the kitchen table and immediately began to eat when his mother put a full plate before him.
"I thought you'd like some stew," Martha said. "There is enough meat in it to give you stamina for the next trip."
No need for more words. Mother and son understood each other perfectly.

~ * ~

Later that afternoon, in Pickering village, the men of the region gathered in the local pub after ending their work on the fields and farms. The talk was lively and the beer flowed freely.
John Barry put down his pint, wiped his mouth with his sleeve and remarked to his mate Ben, "Saw that black coach again yesterday, when I went to check on the sheep."
Ben hardly looked up. "Aye, I'm listening."
"Wonder whose property it is and what its business is. Always appears when darkness falls."
Ben took another gulp of his pint. Then he acknowledged what John mentioned. "My brother's son, Tim, saw it too. He said it rode so fast, as if chased by the devil."
"Yeah, it was speeding for sure. Could not see who or what was in it."
"Not the first time it's been seen on our road. Something strange going on, I think."
Joshua Thistlewaite, the landlord, heard the comments but didn't comment on them. He just poured the drinks like a good landlord. Besides, he couldn't well afford to spend time talking to his customers. The pub was full, as always around this time. His sharp eyes surveyed everything to be sure he could intervene at a timely fashion.
All the men and lads he knew from around, except for the one stranger. He'd never seen the man before. The man entered about half an hour ago and ordered a light ale in a polite way. Now he was seated in the farthest corner of the pub, sipping his pint.
While enjoying a calmer moment behind the tap, Joshua studied the stranger more closely. He looked to be in his forties, had a stern face and lips which seldom laughed. A lawyer or a banker in all probability, he thought.
What bothered him a little was that the man appeared to be listening in on the conversation of Ben and John, although he couldn't fathom why such ordinary talk would interest a man of his quality.
Disturbing his thoughts, the stranger beckoned him.
"What can I do for you, sir?" he asked, hurrying over to his table and trying not to show he had been studying him.
"First, fetch me another pint of this excellent lager and then, if you can spare the time, I'd like to talk to you for a while."
It was said in a cultivated tongue, and Joshua could immediately tell the stranger didn't originate from this part of the country. London or some other southern town, he guessed.
He hurried to carry out the order, while asking Ben to step behind the bar for the time he was occupied elsewhere. He returned to the table.
"I am now at your disposal, sir."
He saw how the stranger glanced shortly at Ben, who was already tapping another pint for John.
"Do you get a lot of people in here?" he then wanted to know.
"It depends," Joshua replied. "On weekdays it can get busy when all the men need to water their throats."
"You must know quite well what goes on in the village," the stranger continued.
Joshua shrugged. He carefully weighed his words, not wanting to reveal too much. His instinct told him something was not right here.
"Not much goes on in Pickering I don't know about."
The gent nodded. "I thought so. Well, I am trying to locate a young woman by the name of Margaret Thompson. She would be eighteen years of age and has blonde hair. Do you know if any such girl lives in or passed by your village?"
Joshua was silent for a moment. The request confirmed his ill feelings. He understood he would have to be very sparse in answering, to make sure he didn't cause harm to anyone or anything.
"Why do you need to know?" he asked, but in such a way the other would not be insulted.
The man smiled. To all appearances, he looked innocent and seemed trustworthy. Joshua knew better. He felt an underlying coldness and sensed some feeling of threat.
"She's come into an inheritance and the trustees have asked me to find out her whereabouts," the man answered, while smiling again, and producing a gold coin out of one of his pockets.
Joshua eyed the coin and reconsidered. It could be true. He knew there existed men who were employed to search for people who were lost or had disappeared. After all, the stranger had done nothing wrong yet.
"Farmer Aldleigh has a blonde girl working for him," he offered, feeling at last he could trust the man enough. "She came asking for work not so long ago. Perhaps she's the one you are looking for?"
"It might be," the other agreed, while putting the gold coin into his hand. "Can you be so kind as to give me directions to this farm?"
"It'll be my pleasure, sir," Joshua beamed. "When you follow the road leading out of the village, you go until the crossroads and then turn left. Aldleigh's farm is a mile or so from there. If you don't wait too long, you can be there before darkness falls."
"Thank you. I'll go and have a talk with the farmer."
"Glad to be of service."
"No, it is I who must thank you," the stranger said while putting a second gold coin on the table. He then got to his feet and grabbed his overcoat.
Joshua returned to his work. His eyes followed the gentleman as he made his way through the throngs of farmers and finally left the pub.




Author Bio

Nickie Fleming was born and raised in the historical town of Dendermonde, Belgium, home of the legendary Horse Bayard. Nickie read English and Dutch Literature and Linguistics at the University of Ghent, where she took her master's degree in 1978. She began work as a teacher of languages to 16-18 year-olds and has done so during her long career. She has been writing since she could hold a pen in her hand, but only came to publication when she was well over 50—mainly because she was not actively seeking it. Besides writing, Nickie spends her time with the things she loves—and those she doesn't like so much: housekeeping, reading (favorites are thrillers and good romances), listening to good music, going to see shows and concerts, travelling, food and wine... Nickie is single and shares her house with her only sister, who is equally single. The two ladies get along just fine and do most things together.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Dragons Of The Ice, by C. L. Kraemer

As I am busy creating for my readers, I have decided that the next few weeks I will be featuring a few new release novels.  I hope you will check them out and let me know what you think.

This weeks feature will be:


Title: Dragons of the Ice
Author: C. L. Kraemer
ISBN: 978-1-62420-333-6

Unexpected dragon shiftings have increased since the conference in China. More deaths being covered up inexplicably sends Lee Svensson to Japan to investigate from the Swedish Embassy. Why is it World Watch, Inc., a marketing company, is always on site when a shifter dies? Lee is charged to find out. When the husband of his wife’s best friend discovers an account he is managing, World Watch, Inc., is manipulating oil companies by buying up all available stocks, the two realize their paths are the same. Now that their wives have announced the impending births of dragonlings, it is imperative the men solve this riddle. An American dragoness shifter and former full blood warrior dragon will prove courage comes in all sizes.

~*~

A Current REVIEW for this novel by Jeffrey Ross:

Genre: Fantasy
Excerpt Heat Level: 1
Book Heat Level: 1
Rating:  5 Stars of 5

An intriguing shape shifter novel! 5 Stars!

Dragons on Ice is epic in scope-- and its global vision and cinematic presentation will remind readers of a James Bond film. The author works on numerous current modern themes, including the influence of big oil, political manipulation, and the intricacies of marital relationships. Readers will learn a great deal about the classes of shapeshifter dragons which robustly populate the earth, including their history, mating rituals, and birthing practices. Yes, there are many wing-flapping flying scenes and numerous spouts of flame images. The bad guy is a most-villainous creature who pits himself against the decent shape shifters just trying to get along with the "two-leggeds." A fun read combining fantasy and political intrigue!

~*~

An short EXCERPT:

Japan

The flight to Tokyo was tedious and Lee Svensson was not a good traveler. Airplanes exacerbated his claustrophobia, and the air turbulence upset his stomach. He disembarked with the passengers heading into the terminal. It never ceased to amaze him how polite Japanese travelers were. The walkways, while crowded, found the citizens accommodating to one another and foreigners. Lee located his luggage at the baggage retrieval. A close by kiosk offered instructions for the second leg of his journey. He purchased a rail ticket to Sapporo and flagged a vacant taxi willing to take him to the station. After settling in his window seat, Lee opted to close his eyes and allow the gentle movement of the bullet train lull him to sleep. There were two changes to make before he reached his destination far to the north of Tokyo in the Hokkaido prefecture.

This was his first trip away from Olga since they'd wed before the spring conference. If there hadn't been so much evidence against the target, he would've passed off this assignment to another. The nature of the investigation, however, required his presence at the offices in Sapporo.

"Sir? Excuse me, sir. We're at your stop."

The uniformed train attendant woke him, opting to gently rouse the stranger. "Domo arigato."

She smiled, a shy affair showing a small dimple in her right cheek. "You're welcome, sir."

Lee rose from the seat and stretched his muscles. He was facing one more transfer then eight hours of sleep. His meeting wasn't for two more days, but he felt the need to be rested. He'd be glad when he could stop moving and call Olga. She'd been acting very odd before he left yesterday. Was it just yesterday? He shook his head realizing his sense of timing had flown out the window after several time zone changes.

The second transfer was quickly accomplished as Lee settled his briefcase next to him. Safely ensconced in his seat on the final leg of his journey, his eyelids began to drift toward his cheeks.

The ring of his cell phone startled him awake.

"Hello? Olga! Good heavens, what time is it there?"

He listened to the voice of his lifemate, feeling tightness in his shoulders disappear. His lips slid into a smile and he stretched his legs before him.

"I know, my love, but just put up with her while I'm gone. She is, after all, the one who promoted you to the council and encouraged them to use your work."

The countryside was giving way to homes. Lee straightened and started checking around his seat for anything he may have left.

"What? Olga? What did you just say?"

The sound must've been distorted by such a long distance.

"Olga? Let me call you back. We're at the final station, and I need to get to my hotel room. I'll be able to hear you better from a landline. Okay?"

He sensed she wasn't thrilled but clicked off his phone knowing she would wait for his call. Lee made his way to the hotel and his room.

Showering away two days of travel, he reveled in the hot water sluicing down his body chasing away the aches and pains of sitting for so long. Over-sized, terrycloth towels specifically set out for him as per his reservation request, warmed and relaxed the remaining weariness from his bones. The urgency to sleep was exerting power over his need to speak to his wife. He shook off the need to sleep. He'd better call Olga or she'd worry unnecessarily.

Once he'd gone through the hotel's phone exchange, he waited on the bed as the phone rang at the other end.
"Hello?"

Finally. "Hi, sweetheart. I couldn't quite hear everything you were saying while I was on the train. Now, what did you want me to know?"

He sat listening to his wife relay the news to him. This changes everything.

"I think we best talk seriously about this when I get home. I'll be here for at least a week following up on a… situation. The outcome here will determine my next assignment. I miss you, Olga."

"I miss you, too, Lee. Be safe. If this has anything to do with the events at the spring meeting, I want you to promise me you'll be especially vigilante."

"I promise, love. I'll call you every day."

Stunned, he crawled beneath the covers depositing the damp towel on the chair next to the bed. Before he thought to turn out the light, his eyes betrayed him and closed.

Lee Svensson was sound asleep, the worries of the coming day temporarily forgotten.

~*~

AUTHOR BIO:


Christie L. Kraemer Bio

A traveler for most of her life, C. L. Kraemer has settled in the Northwest with her husband and two cats. When not creating a new world or entity, she likes riding next to her husband on their Harleys.

~*~

If you would like to check out other books by this author, you can find a listing here: C. L. Kraemer Author Page on Amazon

Quick Links to Amazon for all the books in this series (so far):











Monday, January 16, 2017

2017 - Here We Come

Welcome to the new year – 2017.  In the past I have set up a few resolutions for the new years, but let’s face it, by June we are different people with different priorities and any resolutions we may have made are long forgotten.  So instead, I have set up a few goals for the year.  Ones that I think I will stick with and actually strive for. I have set down 3.  Three is a good number.  Not to many and not to few.  3 is something to work towards.

1.  I am on Goodreads (in case you want to hunt me down to see what I am reading) and each year I have set up a goal to read so many books.  This year my goal is 52.  That’s one book a week.  I can do that.  Esp. as on a good week I read 2 or 3 books.  Like last week, I read 3.  This goal works for me, because there are some weeks I don’t read at all.  Such as when I am hard-core writing.  Then you have 4-6 weeks where I am not reading a thing. 

2.  I have 3 fully drafted books sitting in my office at home.  Why have I not sent them out and done something with them?  I don’t know.  There is one that I know my publisher would love, as it’s paranormal fantasy.  It’s so my thing.  Then there is a horror story that is pretty much ready to go out, but for one more read through.  The problem with it is that it is not as long as I wanted it to be and I’m not sure a publisher would want a full length novel that comes in at 47,000.  I can add filler to it, or I could toss in one more scene, but that seems like wasted words and space.  The third book, sitting gathering dust, is one that I think is my best work ever.  Most of my books, I think are good.  The stories are sound.  The characters fleshed out.  Not too bad at all.  This new one, that I am sitting on, is really, really good.  It’s different and it’s controversial, and it’s got some hard moments.  It’s almost like I’m afraid of putting it out there because I think it is so good, what if it’s not?  Regardless of any of the reasons I am holding these three books, it’s all in my head and that needs to stop.  So, goal number 2 is to deal with all these books.  NOW.  Stop staring at them. Stop having them take up useless space on my flat surfaces.  These books need to find a home. 

3.  Enjoy the days.  I am a future planner.  I look forward way to much and forget to see what is right before my eyes.  I want to take more time in the present.  That sounds easy right?  I have been doing that for about a week now and it’s really hard.  I find myself still planning and seeing things way down the road.  Not just days but weeks, and months and even years.  I’m so busy planning for a future that I am not living the days. 


That’s it.  Three goals for 2017.  Let’s see how I do.  Did you set up any resolutions?  Or goals?  How is that working out?