Harry Starke by Blair Howard — author interview

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Mystery
Date Published: September 7, 2015
 
 

Harry Starke is the first novel in the Harry Starke series of murder mysteries.

Why Did Tabitha Willard Throw Herself off the Walnut Street Bridge?

It’s almost midnight, bitterly cold, snowing, when a beautiful young girl, Tabitha Willard, throws herself off the Walnut Street Bridge into the icy waters of the Tennessee. Harry Starke is there, on the bridge. Wrong time, wrong place? Maybe. He tries, but is unable to stop her. Thus begins a series of events and an investigation that involves a local United States congressman, a senior lady senator from Boston, a local crime boss, several very nasty individuals, sex, extortion, high finance, corruption, and three murders. Harry has to work his way through a web of deceit and corruption until finally…. Well, as always, there’s a twist in the tale, several in fact….

Harry Starke is a hard-boiled private detective, an ex-cop, a tough guy from right side of the tracks with finely tuned senses, good instincts, and friends in high places. He’s single, successful, well educated, and yes, he will hurt you if he needs to.

INTERVIEW

– What was the inspiration for your latest book (i.e. the one you are currently promoting)?

A: The inspiration for Harry Starke when I visited the Walnut Street bridge, a pedestrian bridge over the Tennessee River in Chattanooga. “A great place for a suicide,” I thought, and, in my mind’s eye, I could see it happening. The idea in itself was not enough. I had to expand on it and add a couple of murders, some nefarious characters, and several dangerous situations (for Harry), and from there it kind of grew, which is the way it usually happens with all of my books.

– How much of yourself is reflected in this book (for example, professional expertise, personality, or other), and how?

A: There has to be some of the author in every book, even if it’s only fantasy. Harry Starke is everything I wish I was.

– The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover.  Can you tell us about your cover – why you chose that concept and who the artist is.

A: The cover for Harry Starke came from a stock photo. The character in the image is exactly how I would want him to look.

– Can you tell us something quirky about this book , its story and characters? (for example, were the characters named after something or someone in particular)

A: All of my books have some quirky characters Harry Starke, has Benny Hinkle, a rather strange bar owner. The same book also has Shady Tree and Stimpy and Ren. Books two and three in the series, Two for the Money and Hill House, introduce a very nasty Mafia don in the form of Sal De Luca. Quirky characters add character to the book.

– If you could / wished to turn this book/series into a movie, who would be your dream team? (e.g. director, actors, locations, etc. – dead, alive or mythical!)

A: One can only wish, and if wishes came true Harry would be played by Titus Welliver who plays Harry Bosch in the TV series. Amanda? I guess Sara Paxton best looks the part.

– What is your writing process?

A: It’s very simple. When I am involved in a project, I write seven days a week from 8am until I get tired, usually around 2pm or 3pm. Once the project is complete, I do an edit and then send it to my editor. She will do a full copy and content edit then send it back to me. I will do another edit, then it’s back to her for the final edit.

– What is in store next?

A: These days my writing is all about Harry Starke. The fifth book in the series, Family Matters, is due to be released in a couple of weeks, and I am already at work on book six. I don’t have a title for that one yet, and there are more to come. He is garnering quite a following, I’m happy to say, so as long as I can keep him fresh, and the plots interesting, that’s what I will be doing.

Author Bio:

Blair Howard is from a small town in England, near Stratford-upon-Avon, on the edge of the English Cotswolds. He is Kentucky Colonel, an honor bestowed upon him in 2008 by the then Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Steven L. Beshear. Until 2015, he wrote sweeping historical epics, and is the author of five historical novels. In July of 2015 he decided to try his hand at writing mystery novels, thus we have Harry Starke. The first in the series, Harry Starke, was released in mid-September 2015. The second novel, Two for the Money, was released October 19 the same year, Hill House, in mid-December 2015, and Checkmate in February 2016, and there are more to come.

Blair is the author of more than 40 books, including the Harry Starke series and five novels of the American Civil War. More than 4,500 magazine, newspaper, and web articles. His work has appeared in many national and international publications, including Delta’s Sky Magazine, PHOTOgraphic magazine, The Mail on Sunday, The Walking Magazine, Petersen’s Hunting Magazine, The Boston Herald, The Detroit Free-Press, The Anchorage Times and many more.

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Contact Information

Website: http://www.blairhoward.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/blair.howard.77

Twitter: @bcwhoward

Blog: www.blairhoward.com/blog

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KHQS30

 

Purchase Links

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1K8zCrl

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Killer Pursuit by Jeff Gunhus: Book Blitz

Thriller
Date Published: January 18, 2016

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When a secret webcam is found in the Georgetown bedroom of a murdered high-society call girl, everyone in Washington, DC wants the recording…especially the killer. 
After a high-society call girl is brutally murdered in her Georgetown home, investigators find two cameras hidden in the walls of her bedroom. One has its memory erased, presumably by the murderer. The second is a webcam with an encrypted connection…and no-one knows who’s on the other end. Whoever has the recordings has embarrassing leverage against some of the most powerful men in DC, not to mention a video of the murder showing the identity of the killer.
FBI Special Agent Allison McNeil is asked by beleaguered FBI Director Clarence Mason to run an off-the-record investigation of the murder because of the murder’s similarity to a case she worked a year earlier. Allison knows the most direct path to apprehending the killer is to find the videos, but rumors that the victim’s client list may include some of Washington’s most powerful men makes her doubt the director’s motives. As she starts her investigation, she quickly discovers that she’s not the only one pursuing the recording…but that the most aggressive person racing against her might be the murderer himself.
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About the Author

Jeff Gunhus is the author thriller and horror novels for adults and the middle grade/YA series, The Templar Chronicles. The first book, Jack Templar Monster Hunter, was written in an effort to get his reluctant reader eleven-year old son excited about reading. It worked and a new series was born. His books for adults have reached the Top 100 on Amazon and have been Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Finalists.
After his experience with his son, he is passionate about helping parents reach young reluctant readers and is active in child literacy issues. As a father of five, he leads an active lifestyle in Maryland with his wife Nicole by trying to constantly keep up with their kids. In rare moments of quiet, he can be found in the back of the City Dock Cafe in Annapolis working on his next novel.
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Checkmate by Blair Howard — book excerpt

checkmate

Mystery
Date Published: February 16, 2016
 
 
 

Checkmate is the fourth standalone novel in the Harry Starke series of mysteries.

Angela Hartwell lay dead in the shallow waters beside the golf course. There was not a mark on her, yet she had been strangled. How could that be?

Once again, it’s up to Harry Starke to find out. The investigation takes him into a world he’s very familiar with, a world of affluence, privilege, and corruption.

To solve the mystery, he must deal with three murders, a beautiful used car dealer, her lovely twin sisters, and a crooked banker.  Not to mention Burke and Hare, two crazy repo men who will stop at nothing to protect their employer’s interests. There’s also the matter of an ingenious, sadistic killer. But nothing is ever quite what it seems….

Harry Starke is a hard-boiled private detective, an ex-cop, a tough guy from the right side of the tracks with finely tuned senses, good instincts, and friends in high places. He’s single, successful, well educated, and yes, he will hurt you if he needs to.

Checkmate

By Blair Howard

Short Excerpt:

Judge Strange was teeing his ball when we heard a shout.

“Hey Harry! Over here!” It was Greg Holloway. He was standing by his cart on the right side of the seventh green, in the rough close to the river’s edge, waving both arms over his head. I figured he must have put his ball in the water. I waved back, then turned to watch the judge make his shot.

“Harry! Harry Starke!”

What the hell? I turned again. He was still waving his arms.

“C’mere, Harry. Now. We’ve got a body in the water!”

I turned to the others. “Did he say ‘body?’”

“I think he did, “August said. “Better go take a look.”

We ran to the carts, threw our clubs into the bags, and raced off down the fairway toward the still-waving Greg Holloway.

“Over there.” He pointed as he ran toward the water’s edge.

“Hey. Whoa,” I yelled. “Don’t go down there, Greg. Stay away. Don’t disturb anything.”

The woman was just a few feet from the riverbank, lying on her back in six inches of water. She looked peaceful, but there was no doubt about it: she was dead.

At first glance she appeared to be in her mid-twenties. She was wearing dark blue shorts and a white, long-sleeve shirt over a black bra, and a wrist watch—no shoes. From where I was standing, there didn’t look to be a mark on her. No cuts or bruises. Her skin, a dirty gray color, told a story all its own. Oh hell, what a way to go…. Hang on. I think I know her.



Blair Howard is from a small town in England, near Stratford-upon-Avon, on the edge of the English Cotswolds. He is Kentucky Colonel, an honor bestowed upon him in 2008 by the then Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, Steven L. Beshear. Until 2015, he wrote sweeping historical epics, and is the author of five historical novels. In July of 2015 he decided to try his hand at writing mystery novels, thus we have Harry Starke. The first in the series, Harry Starke, was released in mid-September 2015. The second novel, Two for the Money, was released October 19 the same year, Hill House, in mid-December 2015, and Checkmate in February 2016, and there are more to come.

Blair is the author of more than 40 books and more than 4,500 magazine, newspaper, and web articles. His work has appeared in many national and international publications, including Delta’s Sky Magazine, PHOTOgraphic magazine, The Mail on Sunday, The Walking Magazine, Petersen’s Hunting Magazine, The Boston Herald, The Detroit Free-Press, The Anchorage Times and many more.

Website: http://www.blairhoward.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/blair.howard.77

Twitter: @bcwhoward

Blog: www.blairhoward.com/blog

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KHQS30

 

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The Cypress Trap by JC Gatlin: Author Interview

cypress trap Cover Design
Mystery / Suspense
Date Published: August 16, 2015
 
 

A good vacation delivers you home alive.
This is not a good vacation.

When Rayanne commandeers her husband’s weekend fishing trip, she knows it’ll take work to adjust Owen’s attitude. She has no choice. Since the tragedy, they lost so much. They need to reconnect.

Without her knowledge, Owen texts his best buddy, Daryl, to join the getaway. The three of them aren’t alone in the backwoods of Georgia, though.

Owen took something that didn’t belong to him. Something that changed their lives. And now the owner wants it back. By any means — including a posse led by a killer dog.

At first, Rayanne is clueless about the item and its value. One thing becomes crystal clear: If it’s not returned, they might not make it home alive.

Coming from a large family with five brothers, JC Gatlin grew up in Grapevine, Texas, a small town outside of Dallas. In 1999 he moved to Tampa, Florida, where he now resides. JC’s cypress trap authorfishing trips help him breathe authenticity into his stories, which feature the rich landscapes of Texas and Florida as backdrops.

He has written a monthly column in New Tampa Style magazine and penned several mystery-suspense stories. His first, The Designated Survivor, was published in 2013. JC invites you to visit his mystery writing blog at jcgatlin.com.

 

Contact Links

Website: http://jcgatlin.com/the-cypress-trap/

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

Blog: jcgatlin.com

GoodReads at: http://www.goodreads.com/JC_Gatlin

You Tube (Book Trailer): https://youtu.be/mCKFIdWlZUE

Shelfari at: http://www.shelfari.com/jcgatlin

 

 

Purchase Link

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/JC-Gatlin/e/B00ENPSDU2/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Dead in a Park by B. L. Blair — Book Blitz

Mystery / Romance
Date Published: November 12, 2015

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When Leah Norwood finds the body of Donald Collins in the city park, she doesn’t know he is a distant relative. Young Donnie was a jewel thief and a career criminal. Hidden in the lining of his suit jacket was an exact replica of a ring that has been in Leah’s family for over a hundred years. After her home is burglarized, the sexy chief of police is convinced the ruby ring has something to do with the murder.
Leah wants to find out what happened to Donnie, but why would someone kill for a hundred year old ring? She discovers a connection between Donnie and the drug-dealing Cantono family, between the Cantono family and a jewelry appraiser, and between the jewelry appraiser and one of her own employees. Chief Griggs might be onto something. All clues lead back to the family ring.
Leah loves a good mystery. Can she find the killer before the killer strikes again?
EXCERPT
“You didn’t know the victim?” Griggs asked when he returned his attention to me.
“I don’t think so, but I didn’t really see his face.” I paused and then asked, “Who was he?”
“We don’t know,” he replied. “He didn’t have any identification, no wallet, no keys, nothing.”
“How did he get here?”
“Why do you want to know?”
“Just curious,” I said innocently.
Griggs’ eyes were full of amusement as he looked at me, and Reddish laughed. They both know all about my curiosity. I love a good mystery. I read a lot of detective novels and try to solve the mystery along with the protagonist. Movies that feature a mystery are my favorite. If a crime makes the news, I take notes and follow along. I fancy myself a sideline detective. That trait may have been what got me almost killed just before Christmas.
“We don’t know,” Reddish answered my question. “The uniforms didn’t find any unaccounted for vehicle.”
David Reddish is a hard man to read. He has been a police officer for over thirty years and a detective for the Reed Hill Police Department for eight having moved to town from Dallas. He is a large man, attractive, with broad shoulders and flat stomach. He has skin the color of coffee with a dash cream, but it is his eyes that tell you he’s not someone you want to cross. They are hard and calculating.
“Was he murdered?” I asked softly.
“Oh, yes. It was murder,” Griggs replied.
The last time I found a body it had never occurred to me that the police would consider me a suspect. As a law-abiding citizen, I had just assumed that people knew I was innocent. My experience with the police showed me I was wrong. I looked at both Griggs and Reddish.
“Please tell me you don’t think I killed him.”
Griggs snorted. “No, we don’t think you killed him. He was taller than you, and his neck was broken. No way could you have done that.”
“It was fast and neat,” Reddish added and then turned to Griggs. “Probably someone with military or combat training.”
“Someone who knows how to kill with their hands,” Griggs said softly.
I swallowed. Candace had shot and killed two people in December and tried to kill me twice. She had been crazy, her behavior unexpected and unpredictable, which had made the situation scary. This sounded worse. A person who was calm and rational murdering someone with their bare hands was chilling. And I couldn’t forget about the weird shoe thing.
“Did you find his shoes?”
“No,” Griggs replied turning toward me.
“Why would someone want his shoes?”
“Who knows? There wasn’t much of a struggle although there were multiple sets of footprints. But all appeared to be made by people wearing shoes.” He turned away from me and back toward Reddish. “Between Leah and her dog stomping around, I doubt we’ll get any viable footprints.”
“Hey,” I said indignantly. Both men ignored me.
“Let’s keep the area secure anyway,” Griggs continued. “Send a team out to see if they can find anything. Maybe the shoes will show up somewhere else in the park.”
“Got it,” Reddish replied as he started to walk away. “See you around, Leah.”
“Bye, David,” I said reluctantly. I didn’t want to be alone with Griggs. It was awkward and unpleasant. I’m not exactly sure why he had kissed me and then disappeared from my life, but I wasn’t going to ask. I hadn’t thought he would be interested in me in the first place. Although not traditionally handsome, Griggs is an extremely attractive and sexy man. After waiting weeks for him to call or come by, I finally chalked it up to a gaffe on his part. Instead of telling me he wasn’t interested, he simply disappeared. If I hadn’t found this body, I probably would have never seen him again except in passing.
We stood there in silence for a few moments before Griggs said, “You can leave now. Thank you for your patience.”
He sounded so formal and polite. I didn’t like it. I gathered Harry’s leash, pulled him up, and started to walk away. “Well, I guess…I guess I’ll see you around.”
Griggs stepped back and let me pass. I hadn’t gotten very far before I heard him call my name. When I turned around, he was standing in the same spot with an odd look on his face. He rubbed his hand across his head and then gave me a slight smile. “It was good to see you, Leah.”
“Uh, yeah, you too,” I stuttered before we both turned and walked away.
About the Author

B. L. Blair writes simple and sweet romance and mystery/romance stories. Like most authors, she has been writing most of her life and has dozens of books started. She just needs the time to finish them.
She is the author of the Holton Romance Series and the Leah Norwood Mysteries. She enjoys reading books, writing books, and traveling wherever and as often as time and money allows. She is currently working on her latest book set in Texas, where she lives with her family.
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Love in the Time of Murder by D.E. Haggerty: Book Blitz

Cozy Mystery
Date Published: October 5, 2015

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In Love in the Time of Murder, the Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives face their toughest case yet. Delilah, or Dee as she wishes everyone would just call her already, is the granddaughter of one of the knitting detectives and her life is in a bit of a shambles. She finally manages to pry herself away from her husband’s clutches, move out on her own, and start her own business. But then her estranged husband is found dead and she’s the number one suspect. The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives aren’t about to let one of their own get sent to the slammer and jump at the chance to search for the true killer. As if Dee doesn’t have enough problems, the knitting detectives decide that Delilah being a widow is the perfect opportunity to find her a new man and decide to put their matchmaking skills to use. Will Dee end up in prison for a murder she didn’t commit or will she be taking another walk down the aisle?
TEASERS
Everyone stops talking when I enter the kitchen. Oh great a confrontation. I do so love confrontations; especially when I’m dressed in sleep shorts and a tank top with no bra. It gives me no end of confidence to confront people with my boobs hanging out.
“You can hit Noel if it makes you feel better,” Izzy offers and Noel just shakes his head at her.
I have no idea if she’s serious or not. “Um no, I don’t believe in violence.” Obviously.
“Pick me. Pick me!” Jack shouts as jumps up and down with his hand raised in the air. “I would love to get my hands on Noel,” he says in a provocative voice and winks outrageously. I can’t help but laugh. Damien reaches over and smacks his hand down. “Behave or I’ll throw out your secret Ben & Jerry’s stash.”
“The grandmas scare you? They’re a bunch of old ladies that go to church and knit together. What’s scary about that?”
Tommy shakes his head. “You have no idea what they’re capable of.” I shrug. Is he serious? “They put ex-lax in the brownies at church!”
I don’t like the way Tommy’s acting like a caveman, telling me I’m going to dance with him. And I really, really don’t like the way my hand tingles where he touches it and my belly warms as he pulls me to the dance floor.
Jack shakes his head at me. “You don’t know me yet but know this – I don’t lie. If I didn’t think you were beautiful, I’d be talking about your clothes. Which are atrocious by the way. You do know we have an employee discount, right?”
The detective shakes my kindle. “Why are you obsessed with true crime novels, Mrs. Clark?”
I snort. “I also read shifter romance novels, but I’m pretty sure I’m not a werewolf.” And with that, I’m done. “Am I under arrest?”
“Shoot! I’m going to fry for Brock’s murder.”
“Don’t be ridiculous,” Damien speaks for the first time. “They don’t use the electric chair in Oklahoma. It’s lethal injection.”
“Oh my gosh, this place is fancy,” gushes Martha as we walk in. She notices a few women working at desks behind the glass wall separating the waiting room from the main work floor. “Do you think there are any single gals working here? Bobby needs a wife.” Her eyes zoom in on the receptionist and she marches right on over to her. “Hi! I’m Martha. I’m a matchmaker. Are you single?”
The bouncer shakes his head. “Um no, I can’t let you in.” He points to Grandma and her posse. “They are instant boner killers. Not good for business, man.”
Betty huffs. “You’re going to let in two gay men but not us?”
He shrugs. “I don’t care if the gay dudes want to make a stripper sandwich. But the customers are going to run out of here like their asses are on fire the second this AARP bus arrives.”
About the Author
I was born and raised in Wisconsin, but think I’m a European (and have the EU passport to prove it!). After spending my senior year of high school in Germany, I developed a bad case of wanderlust that is yet to be cured. My flying Dutch husband and I have lived in Ohio, Virginia, the Netherlands, Germany and now Istanbul. We still haven’t decided if we want to settle down somewhere – let alone where. I’m leaning towards somewhere I can learn to surf even though the hubby thinks that’s a less than sound way to decide where to live. Although I’ve been a military policewoman, a commercial lawyer, and a B&B owner, I think with writing I may have finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up. That’s assuming I ever grow up, of course. Between playing tennis, running much slower than I would like, trying to adopt every stray dog within a 5-mile radius, traveling to exotic new locales, singing off tune, drinking entirely too many adult beverages, addictively watching new movies and reading books like they are going out of style, I write articles for a local expat magazine and various websites, review other indie authors’ books, write a blog about whatever comes to mind and am working on my seventh book.
Contact Links
Email: dena@dehaggerty.com
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Author Interview: Gold Coast Blues by Marc Krulewitch

goldcoastblues

Genre: Mystery

In Marc Krulewitch’s gritty new mystery, perfect for readers of Robert Crais and Marcia Muller, a beautiful missing woman and a mysterious wine lead Chicago shamus Jules Landau straight toward a killer with very bad taste.

Jules Landau’s father was mobbed up, as was his father before him. Jules takes a different path: He’s a licensed private eye, currently collecting his paycheck in cash from a young ex-con looking for his missing girlfriend, Tanya. But as Jules scours Chicago’s North Side, he realizes that any number of people might want to make sure Tanya stays gone. At the heart of her disappearance seems to be a thriving black market for expensive French wine—a vintage so lucrative that Tanya may have paid for it with her life.

Following a trail of cash and power with more twists than a corkscrew, Jules traces a criminal conspiracy back to a corrupt New Jersey cop. With nobody telling the truth, Jules knows he has to act fast . . . because a perfect crime only gets better with age.

*********

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Being depressed.

Where would you most like to live?

In the present moment.

What is your motto?

The meaning of life is to figure out why life has meaning.

*********

Author Bio

Marc Krulewitch’s Jules Landau mysteries take place in Chicago, where he was born and where his family has lived for generations. He now resides in Colorado.

Links

Website: http://marckrulewitch.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/makkrul

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

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Marc-Krulewitch/e/B00494ET3W

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