Tag Archives: Mystery

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Belinda Garcia @MagicProse #Suspense #TBR

1. I am a closet romantic. I write love stories into most of my books. I love to watch romantic movies and read romantic books that make my heart beat fast. I love the famed romantic couples; Rhett and Scarlet; Darcy and Elizabeth, etc.

2. I’m a computer nerd (which is probably why I’m a closet romantic and not a romantic). I worked as a computer programmer and web developer. It’s like a drug, and I now get my fix by working on my website or creating my book covers.

3. I believe in personal power. I once heard that human beings only tap about 4% of their brain. Within everyone lies unimaginable power and strength. Believe in yourself and you can do anything!

4. I love movies. I go nearly every week. I prefer love stories but enjoy action-packed movies that my husband likes. Feel-good movies and funny comedies are the best; but so is a touching movie that stirs the emotions, leaving my cheeks wet with tears.

5. When little, I would stand up on a chair to dry dishes and count the silverware. Thank goodness for DVD players. When I used to watch a tape on a VCR, I would have to cover the numbers with a towel else I’d be adding them up as the movie played down. I think the counting is related to my nerdicitis.

6. I love to dance.

7. I’m a bit too independent. My father abandoned my family when I was 11 and my mother was ill so I would walk to a strip mall to buy my school clothes and supplies, etc. I was sort of on my own. When I was 16, my mother died, I was pretty much on my own.

8. I’m crazy about Zumba, a Latin-dance-exercise. I attend a class 4 or 5 days a week. I spend so much time sitting at my desk that Zumba keeps me limber. For some reason, when my mind is relaxed, my brain likes to start writing. I start hearing dialogue in my head, or narration starts writing. I have to run to my notebook, do some scribbling, and then get back in line to continue the song.

9. I never worry. It’s a total waste of time and doesn’t change anything. Worrying is frustrating and nerve-wracking. My philosophy has always been, don’t worry about the fire until you see the flames!

10. I have great faith in God, though I confess I rarely attend church. From the time I was six until the age of 16, when my brother and I were forced out of our home by the man who owned the mortgage, I used to lie on the roof of our shed and talk to God about my life. He was a great listener and many times helped me and still does in my life. God has literally reached out and touched me, and no one can ever convince me that He doesn’t exist.

IWillAlwaysLoveYou

The last thing Miranda ever expected was to see her brother’s ghost at the fallen Twin Towers.

It’s bad enough survivor Christopher Michaels scares her with claims that if one dies violently, his ghost will haunt the place that holds his name. And to top it all, one of those thousands of ghosts follows Miranda to her hotel. The only certainty is the ghost grabbing her under the covers is not Jake.

Their parents’ deaths separated Miranda from Jake when they were kids. Michaels insists Jake brought them together and it’s no coincidence that of thousands mourning at Ground Zero, it’s his best friend she bumps into. Some best friend. Michaels is more like a moocher. The cheapskate never has money, just a blood-stained wallet he broods over. Miranda has no choice but to hang out with the weird Michaels in order to unravel her brother’s past.

As Miranda spends time with Michaels, she begins to wonder who he really is. Against her better judgment, Miranda becomes emotionally entangled with Michaels, a bitter alcoholic with a secret linked to her brother and that blood-stained wallet.

I Will Always Love You is part mystery, suspense and romance, a novel that will keep the reader turning the pages!

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Suspense, Mystery, Romance

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Belinda Vasquez Garcia on Facebook & Twitter

Website http://belindavasquezgarcia.com/

#Suspense – Lazar’s Target – “James Bond Meets 50 Shades of Grey” by @ksterlingwriter

 ONE

Sergei Mikhailova faded into the shadows of the dockside building and lit a cigarette as he waited for the courier with the critical package. He flipped closed the Zippo lighter he had stolen from an American tourist, took a long draw off the rich Marlboro Red and exhaled through his nose, the rising smoke sifting through the light above him. Without his cherished cigarettes and regular shots of vodka, he didn’t know how he would cope with his arduous and demanding job.

It was dead silent out there except for the occasional ship blowing its fog horn in the distance, and because of the late hour, there wasn’t another person in sight. The air was bitterly cold, so the intermittent breeze carrying the ocean’s salty humidity stung his face like sharp needles, and his ears felt like they might fall off. The area also reeked of dead fish, which made his stomach turn, but the strong tobacco was starting to help.

As he waited and smoked, he noticed the huge piles of dirty snow up and down the dock, which had no doubt been plowed in layers from one storm after another. The sight of it made the place seem all that more frigid and revolting.

One thing was for sure. He didn’t want to wait there any longer than absolutely necessary.

Sergei checked his watch. It was ten minutes after midnight, which meant the courier was late or, God forbid, not coming. The thought of the latter possibility turned his stomach again, and he quickly took another drag off his precious smoke.

The item he awaited was essential in paving the way for Alexei Chernikova’s master plan, and Sergei knew the man trusted no one else to ensure its safe delivery to their office in St. Petersburg. It was such a crucial component, in fact, that even the slightest hitch in tonight’s plan made Sergei anxious.

Failure was not an option, and suffering it at the hands of another was totally unacceptable. So, with every minute that passed, Sergei became more and more enraged, and the likelihood of this delinquent courier leaving the docks alive grew less and less.

Finally, the white compact car he was told to expect approached in the distance, and it slowly weaved through containers, barrels and snow piles until it stopped at the far edge of the next warehouse building. It sat there for a moment before backing up, hesitating, and finally turning right.

What is this idiot doing?

Anger swelled inside him as he watched the car disappear behind the structure. And for several minutes thereafter, all he could see were lights dancing this way and that as the driver apparently searched for the drop-off point. The package was so close Sergei could almost taste it, but this buffoon was playing keep away with the damned thing like a sadistic teenager.

Sergei had certainly killed people for less.

He lit another cigarette and continued to wait as the cold started to seep into his bones. His fingers grew stiff, and his feet were so numb he could hardly feel them. And all of it was because of this asinine courier.

Finally, the car rounded the near corner of the building as if the driver had circled the structure’s entire perimeter. But now he was back on track, continuing along the dock.

Sergei was relieved until he saw the vehicle stop again.

Now what?

The interior light came on, and the car sat there for several minutes as if the driver was reacquainting himself with the directions.

Imbecile!

Sergei drew on his cigarette and continued to steam. He fantasized about wrapping his hands around the driver’s neck and feeling the pleasure of snapping it in his grasp. Just the fantasy of doing it made him shiver with satisfaction. Or maybe it was just the goddamn cold.

The car continued ahead, albeit at a snail’s pace, but it eventually pulled up to the designated drop-off point, twenty minutes late.

Not fucking acceptable.

Sergei was tempted to approach the vehicle, snatch the package from the driver, and shoot him in the head. But that simply would not do. Instead, he stepped into the light to reveal his presence, worked the stiffness out of his neck, and waited for the man to emerge from the car. The courier would come to him, not the other way around.

The driver’s door opened, and the man stepped out. He was a small, skinny guy wearing a black overcoat, and he held a small parcel, about the size of a cereal box. He made eye contact and brought it over.

“What took you so fucking long?” Sergei growled as he dropped the cigarette butt to the concrete and crushed it with his shoe.

“Sorry. I had a lot of trouble finding the place. All these warehouse buildings look the same, and I didn’t see any addresses.”

Neither did I, but I still made it here on time.

Sergei took the package and slipped it into his empty attaché case, which sat on the crate next to him. He flipped the latches closed and glared at the little man, fantasizing about how he would best enjoy killing him.

“Where is my payment?” the courier asked.

“Payment?” Sergei belted out a throaty, foul laugh and coughed through it. “Here it is.” He reached inside his coat, pulled the trusty knife from the sheath at his belt and let fury drive him. He swiped the blade and slashed the man’s carotid artery before the bastard even knew what was coming.

The driver clasped his hands around his throat and dropped to his knees as blood seeped through his fingers. Then he fell to his side, coughing and gurgling as Sergei watched over the scene with pleasure.

It was tempting after that to stab the son of a bitch like crazy and work out his frustrations, but it was hardly necessary. Besides, he was having so much fun watching the idiot gasp, flounder and die on the ground beneath him.

The feeling of sheer power was exhilarating.

Satisfied that the courier was finally dead, Sergei dragged him back to his car, opened the door and worked him into in the driver’s seat. He belted him in, turned the key to start the ignition and rolled down the window before closing the door. Then he reached inside, shifted the car into gear and used the steering wheel to direct it off the side of the dock.

He heard the heavy splash as he walked to the edge and watched the vehicle slowly bob and sink into the ocean, thankful that the dock lights were so bright. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to see everything, and could there possibly be a more splendid sight?

The rear end of the car made a sucking sound as it finally disappeared beneath the surface, and the deed was done.

There were no words to describe Sergei’s satisfaction. He finally had the package in his custody, and the bastard who had no respect for the importance of the exchange had been handily eliminated. He had completed the most important step toward Alexei’s glorious new era. And who knew…maybe there would be a place for him in the annals of history.

lazar

“James Bond Meets Fifty Shades of Grey”

Immerse yourself in the world class novels that combine action, mystery & suspense with tantalizing and tastefully written erotica. You’ll find all your sensibilities roused at once with Kevin Sterling’s ultra-sexy, action-packed Jack Lazar Series.

In this fourth action-packed thriller, Jack travels to Denmark for a business venture, but what seems to be a textbook transaction turns into a nightmare after he gets involved with Katarina, a vivacious Danish girl who apparently lacks a moral compass, not to mention an off button. After naively believing their liaison was just a random encounter, Jack discovers she’s connected to his business deal, and there’s a dangerous political group with skin in the game, too.

Katarina makes a convincing case of being a victim, not part of the conspiracy, but can Jack really trust her?

The firestorm gets out of control as Jack digs deeper, unearths the convoluted plot behind it all, and discovers that innocent people are being heartlessly killed. He’s not only horrified by the reason why it’s happening, but how it’s being done, and there appears to be no way to stop it from occurring again.

Then the scheme’s real objective emerges, launching Jack into action with intelligence operatives to prevent it. But that’s not so easy with assassins on Jack’s tail, forcing him to struggle for survival while trying to prevent Katarina from getting caught in the crossfire.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Action, Mystery, Suspense

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Kevin Sterling on Facebook & Twitter

#BlogTour – Message of the Pendant #Historical #Mystery by Thomas Thorpe

Suddenly, a loud voice bellowed upstairs. “Bastard!”

Charles raced up to the third floor and found Arthur Hurst sitting at a desk, rummaging through drawers.  He clutched a piece of paper in one hand, shaking with rage as he looked up at Charles.

“Businessman, hah! This man, Black is a British agent! Here’s the proof of his duplicity. Where is he? It’s time to put an end to the vermin.”

Charles gasped in shock. The entire charade was unraveling! He tentatively leaned toward the desk and reached for the note. “What do you mean? What evidence?”

Hurst glanced down at one of the drawers. He reached inside and picked up a ledger. “Wait a moment. There’s something else.”

Charles’ eyes darted toward the window, knowing Black lay outside, unconscious and defenseless. Quelling an urge to run, he pretended to be curious and slowly edged around behind the man, as if to look over his shoulder. What could he do? Desperately his gaze searched for an answer until he spied a letter opener. In one motion, he grabbed the dagger and plunged it into Arthur’s back. The rotund body jerked upwards, dropping the notebook. He tried to turn around, but instead, slumped forward onto the desk.

For a moment, Charles stood shaking in disbelief at what he had just done to his sister’s husband.

messagependantnew

William Darmon and wife Elizabeth were powerful figures who in 1818 set society’s pace from expansive grounds known as Mayfair Hall. When a family member is murdered, a mysterious pendant is found containing a long lost request by Napoleon Bonaparte for an American mission to burn down Parliament buildings. The couple sets out on an action filled pursuit of the killer. While interviewing Henry Clay in post-war Maryland about the failed mission, they uncover evidence of a conspiracy to free the Emperor from exile. The Darmons infiltrate the cadre, but a shipwreck off the coast of Scotland, a firestorm at the Darmon’s Manor and a harrowing assault on the Island of St. Helena loom before the mystery can be unraveled.

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Mystery, Historical, Thriller

Rating – PG

More details about the author

Connect with Thomas Thorpe on Facebook

Website www.darmonmysteries.com

Flash Bang by @KellenBurden #BlogTour #Thriller #GoodReads

In the dream they’re shooting at me. Rounds screaming past my face and popping around my head and I need to return fire, but my rifle’s empty, and my hands won’t work. They keep doing that classic fucked-up dream thing where I can’t coordinate my fingers to wrap around the magazine to jam it into place to slam the breech, bring the round home and bring the hate to the fuckers on the ridge line. I scream for Mullens to call in air support, but Mullens is down. Why Mullens? They weren’t aiming at Mullens. The one who shot him wasn’t aiming at all. Then it’s just me and McDowell. I shoot him in the face. My hands work now. When I wake up, my phone is wiggling its way off the milk crate next to the bed. I’m sweaty and my jaw hurts, like I’ve been grinding my teeth and I roll over and answer the phone like this:

“Huh?”

On the other end of the line, Etch says, “Parks, you sound like shit.”

Say “Fucker.”

Says, “Classy.”

I squeeze my eyes hard to clear the smoke, say, “What the fuck?”

Etch gets tired of my razor-sharp wit, says “He bit. It’s go time.”

I’m upright now, a start. And I’m naked. Not unusual. I’m alone, too, not exactly surprising either. I say, “Which one, and how long?”

 

“Brock Mason. Two hours from now. City Park.”

 

I’m out of bed, wander into the kitchen to load the French press with the heavy shit, saying, “You called Harkin yet?”

 

Harkin says, “I’m here.” But not on the phone. It takes me about six seconds to realize that he’s sitting at my kitchen table. He’s in full battle rattle, too. Fancy, all-white BDUs, tactical vest, ski mask, Bushmaster ACR with an ACOG scope mounted to it, and a Starbucks coffee in his hand. I’m still naked.

I say, “Sup.”

And he says, “Homo.”

And I blow him a kiss, turn the burner on under the kettle and wander back into my room.

Into the phone, I say: “Never mind, we’re good. I’ll be ready in five.”

Etch: “Let’s hook ’em and book ’em.” And I hang up before one of us screams yeehaw.

It works like this: We catch bad guys. Then we bring them to good guys who don’t have the manpower or skills to find them on their own. In the good old days, bounty hunters did that by carefully cultivating contacts and listening to the word on the street, and then simply knocking on doors and doing good, old-fashioned leg work. Unfortunately, that method is inefficient, outdated, and a really good way to get your ass shot off. You raise your enemies’ awareness of you by asking their friends where they are for days on end. Then you confront them in a place in which they are familiar, and attempt to take them somewhere they really, really don’t want to go. Our method is better; safer, easier and, 9 out of 10 times, funnier.

Brittany Hart is 5’6”, 120 pounds. She has blond hair, blue eyes, a knock-out smile, and a body that would make a Barbie doll gag herself. She was born in Detroit, Michigan, but moved to Denver, Colorado in March of 1998 for school. She majored in “gettin’ loose” before hitting the bricks in ’99 and working full-time at a club downtown. She likes FarmVille, Hooked on Colfax, and Jersey Shore. She is:

Headed to the park to spark up with an old friend, 15 minutes ago.

First you find your fugitive, someone stupid who has a vice that you can exploit, like multiple drug charges or sex offenses. Then, you find their Facebook page. Almost anyone under 40 has one (yes, even wanted fugitives), and almost all the ones over 30 don’t have the Internet-savvy to set their accounts to private.

Brittany Hart went to John R. Madden High School with Brock Mason. That’s where he thinks he knows her from. It’s a big school, especially for Michigan: 2,000 students and Brock doesn’t remember a fraction of the classes he took, let alone all the people he sat through them with. But Brittany Hart is a fucking fox, and Mason would pretend to remember anything she wanted if it meant breaking off a piece of that.

Then, you find several pictures of the same sexy girl on the Internet. You make sure that this girl is very far away. Somewhere like Russia, or Yugoslavia. Once you have enough pictures to make this girl look like an average, sexy woman of an appropriate age for your target, you create a fake Facebook profile for her. Fill in all the information, tailoring her identity to interest him in some way. If he went to a big high school, she went to the same one. If he used to work at the Target on 15th Street, so did she. From there, it’s all about making contact.

Brock Mason, according to his Facebook profile, is a full time hustla, in Da Streets of Denver. He lives with his auntie and her two grandkids somewhere near Federal Boulevard. He likes Kanye West, Real Thugz, and (believe it or not) FarmVille. He has hundreds of pictures of himself flashing gang signs, holding money, and posing with his shirt off in front of mirrors, a gangly white guy with tattoos slithering across his pasty body like leeches. Nowhere on his profile does it explain that he spent seven years in a federal penitentiary for aggravated assault. Nor does it state that he is wanted in Wisconsin, Wyoming, Nebraska, and right here in Colorado, for everything from possession with intent to sell, to sexual assault. It doesn’t say that there is a $10,000 reward for information leading to his arrest, either, or that he almost never leaves his auntie’s apartment except to pick up more liquor or to pop out for the occasional booty call. A booty call like Brittany Hart. Brock Mason is:

Hyped for today, 56 minutes ago, and Rollin’ out, 20 minutes ago.

Then you send him a message. Something innocuous but provocative, like, “Hey, stranger, long time no see ;).” (Idiots love emoticons.) If he answers back, you’re golden.

Brock Mason is walking through six inches of freshly fallen snow in the middle of City Park right now, steam pouring from his face like dragon’s breath in the frigid winter air. Brock Mason is at least 30 pounds heavier than his Facebook page says he is, and judging by the way he’s walking, he’s carrying a weapon in the front of his pants.

I put my gloved hand to the Bluetooth in my ear and whisper:
“Etch, target is inbound from St. Paul Street, moving northbound through the park.”

“Copy that, I have eyes on.”

Snow falls softly on the hood of my jacket, pattering like tentative fingertips all around my head, landing in my eyelashes, settling on my cheeks. The balaclava around my face keeps the steam from escaping and giving away my position. Mason trots nearer, sticking to the trail, and from where I lie I can make out the prison tattoos on his neck. He’s wearing a red snow jacket, black pants that are roughly four sizes too big for him, and a pair of red Nikes. He’s fatter, paler, and duller than his mug shot photos. Mason is thirty feet away from me now, looking left and right but still moving, intent on getting to shelter from the snow. I am a ghost, dressed all in white, packed into a snow drift in the shadowy gloom of the tree line.

After you’ve flirted with him for about two weeks, lure him to a controlled environment where he is both isolated and disoriented.

City Park is the biggest park in Metro Denver. There’s a zoo, a museum, and a lake scattered throughout it. At the edge of the lake on the southern shore is a gazebo, 100 feet long and 40 feet wide, with iron gates on either side, effectively enclosing the inside of the structure. It was built 98 years ago by some rich industrialist to function as a band shell. Now it’s used for weddings and parties. When it’s not being partied in, all of the doors are locked except for one at the western end, which the park leaves open so that joggers can use the water fountain. That’s where Mason is headed. He’s headed there because Brittany Hart asked him to meet her there so that they could “smoke some weed, and see what happens ;).” I know that because I am Brittany Hart. Well, we are Brittany Hart.

When you’ve got him horny, disoriented, and all alone, you and your ex-military buddies swoop in like the Horsemen of the Apocalypse and wipe his ass out. Oh, yeah, join the military and make some friends. Simple as that.

“Subject entering the gazebo. Engage.”

I’m running now, up and running through the driving snow, with ice pluming off me in clouds. To my left I see Etch moving, too, diagonally through the trees, 12-gauge Benelli M1 Super on his shoulder, checking for hostiles. I see him only because I know where he is supposed to be, and even then it’s difficult to make him out. Harkin hangs back for support, further north, lined up with the building. As the edge of the tree line nears, I yank the FNP .45 from the holster on my hip and bring it to a ready position midway up my chest.

Harkin in my ear: “Subject has moved to the western end of the building. Be advised, subject is favoring a weapon, front waistband.”

Out of the trees, across the clearing, the building looms before us like a monolith. Etch and I converge on the eastern wall of the structure. There are no windows or doors on this side, so we’re covered for the moment. The wind howls, furious, and my legs are on fire from lying in the snow for so long, but I’m ready to do this, so I give Etch the signal and we split, Etch around one side, me on the other, around the corner sharply, and in the open gate. The wind outside the building is deafening, and Mason’s back is to me when I enter.

“Brock Mason.” My voice is steady, ice-cold mercury, and Mason’s shoulders rise infinitesimally in alarm. He does not reach for the weapon, so I don’t put a double tap in his spine. He turns to look over his shoulder. Brock Mason is:

Shitting his pants, 5 seconds ago.

I’m not a big guy, about 5’8” and lean, going on stocky; but I don’t know anybody who likes being on that side of a .45, especially when the person holding it is in full tactical with a ski mask on.

Mason says: “Fuck.”

“Mason: raise your hands out to either side and interlace your fingers behind your head. If you move for the piece I will light you the fuck up.” He considers his options for a millisecond, and then the arms go up.

“On your knees, Mason. Good. Now put your forehead on the ground. Flatten out.”

I move closer to him, watching him breathe heavily on the other side of my iron sights. Five feet away I say:

“Mason, I’m going to cuff you now. If you fight me, my friend will shoot you in the face with a 12-gauge shotgun.” On the other side of the iron bars, Etch appears like a ghoul and blows him a kiss over the breech of his weapon. Mason grinds his forehead into the floor. I holster my weapon, grab his right wrist and drop to a crouch, my knees on his neck and low back. Wrist, click, wrist, click and he’s done. I turn him over with my boot and yank a Taurus .25 from the front of his pants. Clear it, stow it.

“Harkin, subject in custody. Extracting to the tree line, move to cover.”

He says: “I’m at Taco Bell. Be there in like fifteen minutes.”

I tell him to fuck his own face.

We extract Mason from the park quickly and quietly. Harkin brings the van around, and the four of us are gone before anyone even knows we exist. It’s a short drive to our usual bail bondsman’s place of business. Etch phones ahead to tell Mark that the bust was good, and that we’re bringing Mason in. Mark says he’s just hanging around. Big fucking surprise. Mark’s an ex-Department of Corrections guy who got booted from his gig as a prison guard for smuggling dope into a correctional facility. After that, he decided to try his hand at putting shitheads in prison instead of keeping them there. Mark is a burly, lazy-looking S.O.B. A hulking white guy with a beer gut and a shaved head, teeth like a mammoth, forehead like a caveman. Like if Barney Fife had a baby with Chuck Liddell. We drop Mason off at the duplex Mark runs his gig out of, and he meets us at the door in jeans and a T-shirt. He says, “Cool.”

Mark gives us $5,000 under the table, three quarters of what Crime Stoppers is going to give him for the bust. We need Mark because:

a) The way we operate is pretty illegal.

b) The criminal justice system crawls as far as payment systems are concerned (six months to wait for five grand, and that’s if Mason gets convicted) and we are way too broke to wait that long.

Mark needs us because:

a) We bring him free bad guys.

b) He’s a piss-poor bounty hunter.

Two and a half hours later finds Etch, Harkin, and myself in the Goosetown Tavern. The snow is falling harder outside; flakes like cotton balls, falling heavily, lumbering on the breeze and settling on the sidewalks and in the gutters and streets. It’ll pile up by evening, freeze by night, melt in the morning and flood the gutters by tomorrow afternoon. Then it’ll freeze again. Fucking Denver. Beers hit the table with a splash, and the waiter stammers something about the pizza being on the way as he retreats from the table in reverse. No one’s surprised. We’re all wearing our tactical shit. The weapons are in the car, but you can’t blame the kid for being careful. Plus, Harkin and Etch look like comic book characters. The two huge fuckers with their shaved heads, John Harkin with his lumberjack beard, Eric “Etch” Echevaria with his goatee, 500 pounds of muscle, paunch, and sinew between the two of them.

The beer is cold and cheap, the way I like it, and I down it with fervor while the winter paces like a lion outside the windows.

Etch says, “So, what? About $1,700 each?”

About $1,660; but either way, it isn’t a terrible haul for a few hours’ worth of ninja shit and a few days on Facebook pretending to be a sexy blond. When Etch gets home he’ll wipe Britney’s profile and clean out his temporary Internet files so Mason can’t come looking for her, or us, when and if he gets to use a computer again. That’s the other reason we use pictures of girls in Russia; it’s not likely that one of these assholes is going to run into them at a bar anytime soon.

Etch wipes foam off his face with the sleeve of his coat, asks, “What’s the plan for your pieces?”

I’m spending mine on not starving or getting evicted from my apartment, say, “I’m going to buy a tiger with a saddle. Just for cruising around.”

Harkin says, “I’m going to buy a rocket ship, strap my girlfriend to it.” He makes a blast-off sound, trails a finger off into the cosmos. Getting rid of his girlfriend, Stacy, has been a running gag since their first date, and my theory that anyone crazy enough to go on a second date with Harkin is jacked in the brain still stands. Two weeks ago she got drunk and stuck Harkin with a fork because he “was asking for it.” He may very well have been, knowing Harkin; but still. Not a Nicholas Sparks novel in the making.

Harkin asks Etch what he’s got planned. He smiles, tips his mug at us and mumbles something like “soon,” and before anyone can ask what he’s talking about, the slices are on the table. Three of them, the size of kites, steam curling off like a naked flame, cheese running down onto the plate. The Tavern makes some of the best $3 pizza in the city, and I always order mine with pineapple and jalapeños because I’m a troll. It gets real quiet at the table. Etch and Harkin watch Man vs. Wild with the sound off on the flat screen above the bar, and I scoop the dismembered newspaper off the table behind us. Ads, ads, Big 5: box of 50 .40 caliber rounds for $15.99, Sports section, Opinion. Half a world away, people are charging checkpoints with dirty bombs strapped to their chests. No articles, no pictures, nothing. You can walk into any grocery store in America and find out what top J-Lo wore to the beach or who Ashton Kutcher is having sex with, but if you want to know who got their face shot off while brushing their teeth in a tent so that J-Lo or Ashton could keep rocking in the free world, good fucking luck. Your average teen can tell you the entire cast of the Jersey Shore, but has no idea where Afghanistan or Iraq is on a map. I swallow down the bitterness with my next bite. Buried beneath it all on the second page of the local section I find a two-paragraph article about some kid getting stabbed to death near The Stampede, a country-western bar in Aurora. Something about it bites me. Call it a premonition, call it gas. I read it twice, and can’t figure out what it is that feels wrong about it, turn the page, flip to the funnies. On the TV, Bear Grylls drinks his pee out of a snake.

FlashBang

Sebastian Parks is drowning in a flood of his own creation. Dishonorably discharged from the Army, he’s wracked with night terrors and an anger that he can’t abate. Unemployable and uninterested in anything resembling a normal job, Parks makes his living in fugitive apprehension, finding wanted felons on Facebook and thumping them into custody with his ex-military buddies John Harkin and Eric “Etch” Echevarria. When the body of a teenage Muslim boy is found in front of a downtown Denver nightclub Parks, Harkin and Etch are called on to do what they do best: Find bad men and make them pay. 

First-time author Kellen Burden serves up edgy humor, brutal action and characters you can’t get enough of. Flash Bang will keep you turning pages until the end.

Received “Honorable Mention at Los Angeles Book Festival 2014”

Buy Now @ Amazon

Genre – Thriller, Mystery

Rating – R

More details about the author

Connect with Kellen Burden on Facebook

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#YA #Mystery – Steps Into Darkness by Ben Woodard @benswoodard

StepIntoDarkness

Explosions, sabotage, caves, deadly warnings and a dangerous red-haired man.

Imagine The Hardy Boys meet Tom Sawyer. Add a layer of teen angst and excitement plus a mysterious group trying to stop a new dam while stirring up racial tensions.

That’s STEPS INTO DARKNESS, the next book in the Shakertown Adventure Series by Ben Woodard.

Fourteen-year-old Tom Wallace again makes plans to escape the small town in the 1923 Kentucky countryside. The town that won’t let him forget his past, when a horrific event changes his mind. He teams with his cousin Will and young FBI agent Rick Sweeney to try to solve a perplexing mystery. Attempts on the boys’ lives and a bewildering list of suspects keep them on edge and confused. An old man gives them a clue that leads to a false accusation and embarrassment until they discover the real villain, and then wish they hadn’t.

STEPS INTO DARKNESS is a fun, page-turning thriller with a hint of romance that delivers adventure and mystery while exploring the fears of a teen living with a frightful memory.

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Genre – YA/Mystery

Rating – PG – 13

More details about the author

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Website http://BooksByBen.com