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Archive for July, 2021

W.L. Brooks was born with an active imagination.  When characters come into her mind, she has to give them a life- a chance to tell their stories. With a coffee cup in her hand and a cat by her side, she spends her days letting the ideas flow onto paper.  A voracious reader, she draws her inspiration from mystery, romance, suspense and a dash of the paranormal.

A native of Virginia Beach, she is currently living in Western North Carolina. Pick up her latest novel, Unearthing the Past – available now!

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INTERVIEW

Would you call yourself a born writer?

I don’t know if I would say “born writer,” but I absolutely believe storytelling is in the very fabric of my being.

What was your inspiration for The Truth Behind the Mask?

This book is the fourth in my Romantic Suspense series, so my inspiration was the main character herself. I wanted to give Alexandra McKay a story that allowed her to heal old wounds, find love, and be who she really is underneath her carefully crafted persona.

How long did it take you to complete the novel?

It didn’t take very long to complete the first draft but edits and rewrites took months.

What do you feel is one of the most exciting parts of your book?

When clues unravel for my cast of characters.

What other genres have you thought about writing? What genres would you personally never consider writing?

I’ve written a paranormal romance (Between Death and Destiny), and I’ve thought about dabbling in a few other genres. I can’t think of a specific genre I would never consider writing, but I would probably scare myself if I wrote horror.

What do you love most about being an author?

Writing the story.

What’s next for you?

I’m working on the fifth and final installment of The McKay Series. 

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High on a cliff in Hawaii in 1807, an irrepressibly curious native boy dives into the sea and swims to an American merchant ship anchored offshore, embarking on an extraordinary adventure that will change history…

By Susan C. Riford

Title: BLACK ROCKS AND RAINBOWS
Author: Susan C. Riford
Publisher: Blackstone Publishing
Genre: YA / Historical

BOOK BLURB:

The journey of a lifetime told in the audiobook BLACK ROCKS AND RAINBOWS begins with a ship: “An enormous canoe, with great white wings like a magnificent bird.” This is the merchant schooner Triumph from New England, anchored offshore by what is now known as the Big Island of Hawaii, and in 1807, the sight of it captivates a young Hawaiian boy’s imagination and spirit of adventure. Fifteen-year-old Hiapo Opukahaia, orphaned as the result of a war between two rival island chiefs, has been contemplating his future. He dives into the sea and swims to the ship, where he is invited to stay for dinner. When the captain asks if he would like to go to America, he nods Yes.

The audiobook BLACK ROCKS AND RAINBOWS, an historical novel for young adults, edited and narrated by actress Suzanne Ford, was written by her late mother, Susan C. Riford.  The audiobook chronicles the gripping story of Hiapo – renamed “Henry” by his fellow crewmen – whose literal and figurative journey leads to the greatest adventure of all: a hunger for knowledge which ultimately changes Hawaii forever. The title refers to the lava rocks and beautiful rainbows of the Big Island, the vision of which Henry carries with him for the rest of his life.

Working as a cabin boy, Henry does encounter true-life adventures – pirates, storms – during the ship’s year-long voyage, via the Seal Islands and China, back to its home port of New Haven, Connecticut. He also learns to read and write English, unlocking his quest for further knowledge; upon arriving in New Haven, Henry realizes he desperately wants to keep learning, but has no idea how.

Weeping one day on the steps of Yale College, he is found by a kind student, a relative of the school’s president. Taken under the president’s wing, Henry becames a scholar. He wants to translate written works from English into Hawaiian, but at the time, there is no such written Hawaiian language. So he begins to apply the principles in an American spelling book – devised by Noah Webster, of dictionary fame – to the sounds of his native tongue. In doing so, he creates the alphabet-spelling-grammar system that is the basis for the Hawaiian written language in use to this day.

Sadly, Henry dies of typhus fever in 1818 at the age of 26. He is buried in Cornwall, Connecticut, until 1993, when he makes one final journey: a group of Hawaiian residents has successfully crusaded for the return of his remains to the Big Island for permanent burial. Hiapo Opukahaia has come home.

Suzanne Ford was inspired to create the audiobook BLACK ROCKS AND RAINBOWS originally written by her late mother, Susan Riford, a prolific author of children’s books and plays and founder of what is now known as the Rev Theatre Company in Auburn, New York. Her mother became fascinated with Henry’s story when she moved to Maui. “The novel was her final work before she died,” Ford says. “I took on the unfinished manuscript, wrote the last chapter, had a few copies printed and recorded the audiobook. The story is such a fascinating and compelling adventure, fun to listen to for anyone, but especially for young adults.”

Ford is working on an updated, illustrated book version of BLACK ROCKS AND RAINBOWS. “It’s noteworthy that there has never been a full-length historical novel about Opukahaia, who is such a major figure in Hawaiian history and whose story carries a timeless message about the importance of education,” she observes. “Especially in this era of the dawning of deeper recognition of indigenous peoples and their heritage, this as yet unfamiliar but universal coming-of-age story is resonant and relevant to youth of any culture.”

PRAISE

“This adventure story is riveting from start to finish and the action keeps coming. The ending, though sad because it’s a true story, was very uplifting and inspiring. A very satisfying audiobook experience.”

-Amazon

Listen to a sample of the audiobook here:

And here:

Suzanne Ford is an actress and writer working in film, television, and theatre. She has performed in more than100 stage productions in New York and Los Angeles, on tour and in regional theatres around the country. Her many film credits include the Duplass Brothers’ recent hit Manson Family VacationYou, Me and Dupree and The Apparition, and she has appeared on such television shows as Grace and Frankie, Grey’s Anatomy, Criminal MindsIt’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Friends. She has been an advertising copywriter, has written a biography of Mel Gibson, screenplays, and cookbooks, and has ghostwritten memoirs. She and her husband live in the Hollywood Hills.

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Title: SAFE HARBOUR
Author: Mike Martin
Publisher: Ottawa Press and Publishing
Pages: 264
Genre: Mystery

BOOK BLURB:

Sgt. Windflower is on a special assignment in St. John’s and adjusting to life in the big city. He is navigating traffic, a difficult boss at work and what seems like an epidemic of missing girls. He becomes more interested when he discovers that one of the girls is from Grand Bank. Then a girl approaches his RCMP van one night and he is pulled into the underlife of the capital city. But he still manages to enjoy all of the good things in life. His family, old and new friends, and the love of living so close to the Atlantic Ocean. Welcome back to St. Windflower Mysteries.

Windflower looked across the lake. Well, he would have if he could have seen anything through the thick blanket of fog that had been sitting on Quidi Vidi Lake for the past seven days. One whole week, he thought. Every day since they had arrived in the port city of St. John’s, it had been the same. Windflower knew the lake was out there because he remembered running around it as his daily exercise when he was temporarily stationed here a few years back.

Sheila Hillier, his wife, knew the lake was out there as well. She’d spent a couple of months doing rehab at the nearby Miller Centre when she was recovering from a serious car accident. If there wasn’t any fog, she could look out her window in May and see the rowers getting their practice in as part of their training for the Royal St. John’s Regatta, an annual event that took place down there in August.

But it was a long way from spring as Windflower gazed out his window at the typical scenery for a January morning. He was the first one up, except for Lady, his collie, and Molly, the cat who never seemed to sleep anyway. She would close her eyes sometimes, but Windflower had never come into a room with her in it when she wasn’t awake and watching him. Windflower liked this time of day when his two children got up. They were Amelia Louise, his soon-to-be two-year-old daughter, and his almost-daughter, Stella, who he and Sheila were fostering.

He liked this house on Forest Road, too. It wasn’t similar to his and Sheila’s in Grand Bank on the southeast coast of Newfoundland, but for a rental it suited them perfectly. It had four bedrooms, two and a half baths and a large backyard for the kids to play in and, if the weather held, for Windflower to barbeque. But the likelihood of the weather staying just simply foggy and damp was not good. There was snow in the forecast and more snow coming after that.

Windflower had been in snowstorms in St. John’s before. It was hard to miss one if you travelled here regularly in the fall, winter or spring. And they didn’t come with a few flakes or a few inches of accumulation. No, snowstorms here often meant feet of snow, sometimes in the double digits, and he had come out some mornings to look for his car, only to find it buried under a virtual mountain of snow. The worst storms came in double or even triple waves. That’s when a storm system would blow through and dump one load of snow and then drift out to the nearby Atlantic Ocean. Unfortunately for the good people of St. John’s, it would blow back in and repeat the damage—sometimes more than once.

Windflower grabbed his anorak and hat and took Lady out to the backyard. He also brought his smudging kit. Inside were small packets of his four sacred medicines: cedar, sage, sweetgrass and tobacco. There was also an abalone shell, a small box of wooden matches and an eagle feather fan that had been gifted to him by his grandfather many years ago.


Mike Martin was born in St. John’s, NL on the east coast of Canada and now lives and works in Ottawa, Ontario. He is a long-time freelance writer and his articles and essays have appeared in newspapers, magazines and online across Canada as well as in the United States and New Zealand.

He is the author of the award-winning Sgt. Windflower Mystery series set in beautiful Grand Bank. There are now 10 books in this light mystery series with the publication of Safe HarbourA Tangled Web was shortlisted in 2017 for the best light mystery of the year, and Darkest Before the Dawn won the 2019 Bony Blithe Light Mystery Award. Mike has also published Christmas in Newfoundland: Memories and Mysteries, a Sgt. Windflower Book of Christmas past and present.

Mike is Past Chair of the Board of Crime Writers of Canada, a national organization promoting Canadian crime and mystery writers and a member of the Newfoundland Writing Guild and Ottawa Independent Writers.

Website: www.sgtwindflowermysteries.com

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/mike54martin

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

A PERFECT STORM

A TWIST OF FORTUNE

Fire Fog and Water

FIRE FOG AND WATER

MORE…

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If memoirs, done right, tap the right sort of personal journey to ignite fresh insight and inspiration into the human journey, then what better way to humorously and poignantly illuminate the sequential steps and stages of life than with shoes?

“My Feats in These Shoes” is an exuberantly spunky woman’s spirited and irrepressible romp—slips, missteps, leaps, scuffs, and twirls—toward becoming something bigger, something better, something more.

Far from serving up trauma porn (or emotional bunions), this memoir is an upbeat, humorous, affectionate and affecting coming of age memoir that ends each chapter with a ‘Put Yourself in My Shoes’ section for readers to consider their own strides in pursuing an out of the shoe box life.

CHAPTER ONE

Chapter One

Baby Needs New Shoes

It isn’t the mountain to climb that wears you out, it’s the pebble in your shoes.

—Muhammad Ali

My dad’s favorite books, Mein Kampf, Think and Grow Rich, and How to Win Friends and Influence People are book-ended by my bronzed baby shoes.

The shoes have deep copper colored wrinkles and folds, they cave in slightly at the arch, and one is missing a shoelace. My report cards aren’t bronzed, neither are my pacifiers, baby blankets, rattles, or bottles. My graduation shoes or wedding shoes are not plastered for posterity, only my baby shoes.

No other personal artifact, it seems, is significant enough to be preserved for all time as what I had on my feet when taking my first steps into the world. I chose to believe my bronzed baby shoes are a tiny monument to potential and promise. Over- come by this notion, I once made the mistake of asking my dad who it was that had my shoes bronzed and he said, “Why would I know? What a waste of money…and copper.”

Seeing my bronzed shoes on my parents’ shelf as a young girl made me feel I might be destined for something momentous, despite my dad’s snide comments or unsettling reading material. Looking at them made me feel a little famous; like, ‘Why would my shoes be preserved for all time if I wasn’t special? To someone?’

I considered the possible benefactors and did a mental lineup of possible characters who might have cared enough, or loved me enough to save the shoes, schlep them to the bronzing place, and ensure they were preserved for all time. The whole process took some effort—and as my dad had grumped—someone spent the cash. Both of which were in short supply when I was born.

My maternal grandmother, Echo Rose, stood 5’4” barefoot, was substantially redheaded with bright blue eyes, a DD chest, and the predictable man trouble that often accompanies those measurements. A photo of her at age seventeen shows her scowling into the sun, her arm raised and her hand above her forehead, but the sun still directly in her eyes. She is circled by a number of men from the 1932 Olympic track and field team. She had volunteered to be a times keeper at the prestigious event. None of the men were looking at the camera, their eyes were fixated on my grandmothers amply filled angora sweater. She looked not just aware but accus- tomed to the attention. In fact, decades later in her life I was with her when a man rushed to open a door for her.

“Grandma, you’ve still got it!” I joked.
“At this age, who needs it? she replied, not missing a beat.

The day I was born, she was thirty-six years old. Her own mother, my great-grandmother, had been forty when she started having children and then had eight of them in succession. Echo was in the middle of this pack and despite so many efforts, with so many men, in so many jobs, the middle is pretty much where she stayed throughout her life.

At the time of my birth, she was also a divorced, single, working mother of three children who still lived at home—one of them being my teenaged, pregnant mother. Echo had dreams and aspirations of her own but, not unlike her name, whatever she tried to be or do with her life came back to her a little less strong and clear than how it started. She wanted to be a good mother but married crummy men who didn’t support her. She wanted to be a performer but instead loaded her daughters with lessons and cos- tumes and hoped, in vain, they would become the star she wanted to be. She worked fifty hours or more a week as a WWII riveter, developed people skills in retail customer service, and eventually was promoted to a fashion buyer position at a large and prosperous department store long before it was chic to have a career.

Echo had an easy laugh, a love for life, and a poet’s soul. She wrote poems about her day, poems about her family, her garden, and her work. She wrote poems she sent as birthday cards, poems for holiday gatherings, and metaphoric poems about sturgeons.

“When does the sturgeon get the urgin? It’s in the spring.” “When does the flower feel its power? It’s in the spring.”

In all of the eighty-eight years I knew her, I never heard her say “I’m tired.” Although in constant pain and taking daily morphine for a back injury, she never missed out on a chance to have fun. Her motto was, “I’m gonna feel awful sitting at home or going out— might as well go out!” And off she would go, me in tow, to Disneyland, museums, carnivals, or cake decorating class. She gave me a roof over my head, a crib in her room, and from the beginning made me feel like I was worthy of the “Sugar Plum” nickname she gave me. She taught me that a woman could call her own shots, build her own life, and have meaningful work outside the home long before society agreed. “Who needs a man?” she would always say, and then grab a hammer, a needle and thread, or a paycheck and get “it,” whatever “it” was, done.

Where was my grandfather?

This question echoed many times a day from extended family, neighbors, my mother, my ten-year-old aunt and my seven-year-old uncle. I didn’t miss him because I never saw him or even met him until I was in my thirties, and that turned out to be too soon.

At the time of my birth, he was a bellman at a tiny, exclusive hotel in Hollywood. That’s not accurate. He was a tiny bellman, at an exclusive hotel. In pictures from this era, he is standing as tall as a guy 5’5” can stand and is wearing a jaunty pill box hat, tilted slightly to the right, a red vest, white shirt, slacks, and a pair of loafers. Loafer being a key descriptor of more than his shoes.

When he didn’t go to work, which was regularly, he played the ponies at Santa Anita racetrack. He left his hotel job early and often, caught a bus to the track, and lost any money he had made at his hour or two on the job. The only shoes my grandfather was ever interested in were his own or those worn by a horse.

My seventeen-year-old mother, Echo’s eldest daughter, was also a petite redhead. She was often mistaken for Debbie Reyn- olds and just plain mistaken. For instance, the prom night I was conceived—an event that gives a whole new meaning to Senior Ball—she erroneously believed the boy in the backseat meant it when he said he loved her. By this time, she had been cooking, cleaning, ironing, sewing, and standing in for her working mother—and a father who never ponied up—and was itching to be in someone else’s shoes.

My dad, the boy in the aforementioned back seat, was a handsome star athlete and smooth talker. He was popular, a “catch”, and my mother willingly lost more than her Keds in the back seat of his Oldsmobile. Nine months later I was born, but the childish things like the prom queen crown and letterman’s sweater were never, ever, really put away. I grew up with the stories of the glory, glamour, and popularity my parents had reluctantly surrendered “because we had you.”

Sometime after the ink had dried on my birth certificate foot- print and before my first birthday, my dad moved into the very house my mother had tried to escape by dating him. And speaking of escapes, my dad had tried; leaving my mother to attend col- lege in another state and even pledged a fraternity. Once I was born though, he was forced to pack up his university potential and pipe paraphernalia—a new habit he thought made him look collegiate—and return to the pledge he had made my mother.

My parents still had pimples, no paycheck, and delusional, somewhat unwarranted self-regard. I am sure there is a scientific or psychological name for this disorder. Throughout my life I just called the syndrome Mommy and Daddy.

My adolescent parents could barely take care of themselves, let alone another needy, self-centered, hungry human. With idle days at home they practiced creative child-care. One favorite activity became scooping me up out of my crib, standing me on the ground in front of them, and dropping ice cubes down the back of my diaper. Watching me stomp my pudgy, baby feet around the house gave them cheap laughs and me welts.

My teen parents were overwhelmed and under-prepared, maybe even uninterested, and if ice cubes down the pants were considered playtime then buying or preserving baby shoes were most likely not a priority.

And my gambling grandfather, with his losing track record, was most likely extremely careful to never utter, “Baby needs new shoes!” for fear he might have to provide them.

It does not take too many leaps of armchair psychology to know my first pair of shoes were purchased by the only employed and generous person in my family…my grandmother, Echo.

It makes me smile to imagine her making a special detour home from work to pick up the bronzed baby shoes she ordered. I like to think that she was looking at them and smiling while she recalled those moments when she held my hand and watched me walk—wobbly, then willfully forward, taking my first steps toward an unclaimed childhood.

Your past doesn’t define you.

Sure, my dad kicked my self-esteem to the curb when he told me my feet were ugly. Shame on him. But if I let that comment—or the other hundreds like it—define me forever, shame on me. And the same goes for you. Better to concentrate on who, what, and where you can find or create love than hold on to disappointment and despair.

You can blame parents, teachers, whoever and what- ever for your depression, failures, anxiety, lack of focus, and ongoing heartache. Heck, blame someone else for every wrong, every slight, every set back you have faced. How’s that been working for you so far? I’ll answer that—all you’re getting from the blame game is emotional bunions!

At some point, you have to put on your big boy or big girl boots and get on with it. The world doesn’t care if you give up, if you stay standing in one place claiming everyone let you down and it’s all their fault that you stepped in it. Nope, the world just keeps on going without you.

I have never known anyone great who didn’t face hun- dreds of pebbles in their shoes as they climbed their moun- tain of purpose, contribution, and meaning. What do they do? They untie their shoes, pick out the biggest pebbles, throw them underfoot, put their shoes back on and then put all their weight into pulverizing the remaining gravel holding them back or down—and then they keep climbing.

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About the Author

Ronda Beaman

Dr. Ronda Beaman has been Chief Creative Officer for the global research and solution firm PEAK Learning, Inc., since 1990. As a national award-winning educator, Dr. Beaman is Clinical Professor of Leadership at The Orfalea School of Business, California Polytechnic University. She is Founder and Executive Director of Dream Makers SLO, a non-profit foundation granting final wishes to financially- challenged, terminally-ill adults, and serves on the Board of Directors for the National Pay It Forward Foundation. She was recently named a Stanford Fellow at the Distinguished Career Institute.

Her national award-winning book, You’re Only Young Twice, has been printed in five languages. Her memoir, Little Miss Merit Badge, was an Amazon bestseller and was featured at The Golden Globe Awards. Her children’s book, Seal With a Kiss, is designed to improve skills for beginning readers and is offered at Lindamood-Bell Learning Centers internationally. My Feats in These Shoes will be released in Spring 2021.

Dr. Beaman is an internationally recognized expert on leadership, resilience, fitness, education, and life coaching. She has conducted research in a host of areas, written many academic articles and books, and won numerous awards. She was selected by the Singapore Ministry of the Family as their honored Speaker of the Year and named the first recipient of the National Education Association’s “Excellence in the Academy: Art of Teaching” award. She has been selected as a faculty resource for the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) university in Argentina, Kyoto and India, where she received the highest speaker ratings among 36 elite faculty. She has been featured on major media including CBS and Fox Television, USA Today, and is a national thought leader for American Health Network.

Dr. Beaman earned her doctorate in Leadership at Arizona State University. She is also a certified executive coach and personal trainer with multiple credentials from the Aerobic Research Center. Her family was named “America’s Most Creative Family” by USA Today and she won the SCW National Fitness Idol competition.

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When Donna Dechen Birdwell was about ten years old, she became obsessed with the idea that if she was thinking with her brain, she ought to be able to think how it works! She’s been trying to wrap her mind around reality (and how humans experience it) ever since. She made a career out of anthropology—that utterly boundless science of humankind and how we got here—and then sidestepped into Buddhist philosophy and then art and photography and writing stories that tend to fall somewhere in the neighborhood of speculative and/or science fiction. She’s a big fan of Ursula LeGuin and N.K. Jemisin.

In her EarthCycles series, Donna imagines a far, far future world in which pockets of survivors of a global apocalypse have evolved new ways of being human. “Not altogether new,” she says. “More like rearrangements of certain aspects of our inherent human potential.” The first volume of EarthCycles, Song of All Songs, received the 2020 silver medal from Self Publishing Review. The book introduces a mixed-race main character making her unique way through a deeply conflicted world. The second book in the series, Book of All Time, is set for release in August of 2021.

Donna’s first trilogy (Recall Chronicles) is set in a hauntingly familiar 22nd-century world in which nobody grows old, an achievement that turns out to be not nearly so utopian as one might expect. Each volume tells the story of a different character’s experience of that world, but the stories are intertwined and some of the same characters turn up in all the books.

A stand-alone contemporary fiction book, Not Knowing, explores intergenerational PTSD in the life of an archaeologist working in Belize. Donna worked as an ethnologist in Belize for many years, so there’s a lot of her heart in this one.

Before anthropology, Donna worked as a newspaper reporter, and beyond anthropology she studied Buddhist philosophy (and practice) and then became an artist and photographer. Her paintings are done in acrylics on handmade Nepali lokta paper. Her primary photographic interest is in Miksang contemplative photography.

Donna earned her Ph.D. in anthropology from Southern Methodist University in Dallas and previously taught at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

Website: https://donnadechenbirdwell.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/donnadechen/

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

Would you call yourself a born writer?

Perhaps I have some innate facility with language and certainly a passion for what words can do. I’ve always been told I was a good writer, though I wrote mainly poetry and essays until 2014. Early on, I thought I was going to be a journalist, and I did work as a newspaper reporter for a while. Graduate school and academic life did their damnedest to kill my creativity, but once I escaped from it, I found that the experience had also given me a wealth of background material for creating imaginary worlds.

What was your inspiration for Song of All Songs?

I am endlessly inspired by human beings—our origins, our history, our stunning cultural diversity, and our unifying commonalities, some of which (for example, our universal propensity for song and dance and language arts) are too often ignored in science fiction literature in favor of technology and in particular, the technology of exploitation and destruction. In building the world introduced in Song of All Songs, I also rejected any simplistic “good vs evil” scenario. Instead, I present my readers with two human populations, both of which exhibit (in different combinations) both positive and negative features of our inherent humanity. My main character is a mixed-race woman whose experience of the world is…let’s say worlds away from our mundane 21st-century day-to-day experience. Entering her mind to tell her story has been a continuing inspiration! More specific inspirations for the EarthCycles series come from some bizarrely disparate sources, including the zika virus, Tibetan spiritual practice, and studies of early human evolution.

How long did it take you to complete the novel?

I think I started writing bits and pieces of Song of All Songs as far back as 2015, but it didn’t coalesce into a coherent story populated with a cast of well-formed characters until a few years later. During that gestation period I was working on finishing up another novel (Not Knowing), which launched in 2019.

What do you feel is one of the most exciting parts of your book?

The excitement gets underway when Meridia is left alone (and terrified) after undertaking a journey with her friend Damon that leads to an encounter with cultish zealots who abduct Damon. There are a number of other exciting developments along the way, but I wouldn’t want to reveal any spoilers!

What other genres have you thought about writing? What genres would you personally never consider writing?

One of my five published novels is contemporary fiction and I might try my hand at that again. I have an idea for a book of historical fiction based on my research into Irish families and culture. Also, I have a file started that might develop into a nonfiction book. Within my favored genre of science fiction/fantasy, I could never write either space opera or epic fantasy! And I would never, ever consider writing romance!

What do you love most about being an author?

I love the geeky world-building that goes with science fiction!

What’s next for you?

The next book in the EarthCycles series is coming out in August and the third book is about halfway through its first draft, which means it should be ready sometime in 2022. After that, I want to finish up a fourth book for my Recall Chronicles series. On a personal note, I’m looking forward to some travel opportunities as our embattled species emerges from the coronavirus pandemic. My last international journey was to Bali in 2019. I’m thinking I’ll go somewhere in South America in 2022.

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When Serial Killers Terrorize a California Beach Community, One Woman Stands in Their Way…

By Jennifer Chase

Title: COMPULSION: EMILY STONE THRILLER SERIES BOOK ONE
Author: Jennifer Chase
Publisher: JEC Press
Pages: 235
Genre: Crime Thriller

BOOK BLURB:

Emily Stone doesn’t have a badge. But that hasn’t stopped her from tracking down some of the West’s most dangerous child-killers. Armed with a digital camera, laptop computer and her trusty Beretta, Stone uses her innate gift for detective work to identify the perps — and then anonymously e-mail the evidence to the cops.

Now, the hunt for two brazen serial killers on the loose right in her own coastal California town threatens to expose Stone’s identity — unraveling her carefully constructed cover and jeopardizing her life’s work. But when she gets too close to the action, this razor-sharp hunter becomes the hunted. Cooperating with the handsome local police detective could be the only hope for stopping the rampage directed at unsuspecting young women — and saving herself. Can they piece together the clues in time? Compulsion mixes CSI-style investigation with a ripped-from-the-headlines plot and a dose of romance for a keeps-you-guessing, fast-paced and savvy thriller, right up until the shocking finale.

PRAISE

“Jennifer Chase’s Compulsion is an all-time great fiction suspense thriller. Jennifer takes her knowledge of forensic science and criminology to new levels of understanding and entertainment. This is one edge-of-your-seat who-dun-it that will keep you enthralled from the first page to the last.” —Sandra E. Graham, BookPleasures, author of Amos Jakey and Nicolina

“…The new novel Compulsion by Jennifer Chase is a captivating thriller that will keep you guessing until the last page is read. The careful character development results in real, three-dimensional men and women, even if some of them are almost unimaginably horrifying. The plot, with its slowly revealed layers, is one that engages the readers immediately and takes them on quite an adventure…” – Amazon Reader

“…It is really a fantastic book… It is a fresh and fun read. I really had trouble putting it down…” – Amazon Reader

“This truly is a top-notch mystery – thriller of a read. One that has thought out characters, defined so well that you feel as if you are part of their lives, and a storyline that is mysterious, and chilling, yet delivers a personal touch that brings realism to the mix. CSI fans will love this book, as will any mystery/thriller fan, for it is definitely one that delivers.” – Amazon Reader

“Pot boiler will keep the pages turning… If you enjoy crime fiction with a local [California] flavor, you might wish to try this debut novel. Hang on; this one also has a wild ending with some major eye-popping developments that will take you by surprise.” – Amazon Reader


Arizona, Wednesday 0900 hours

The man strolls down the gravel driveway to his makeshift torture trap disguised as a late model Chevy Suburban. It is in fact a hideous, retrofitted, rolling snare designed specifically for the secure confinement of the innocent. He has already stalked and captured several children between the ages four and ten; they had been simply taken from their safe homes and familiar yards. They are never to be seen alive again. Their only mistake was their innocence and inexperience of the inexplicable evil that relentlessly wanders the neighborhoods across the nation, sporting a simple psychological mask of normalcy.  

Dressed in khaki shorts, cheap superstore sneakers and a loose fitting blue and yellow Hawaiian shirt, the clean shaven, dark-haired man in his late-thirties looks almost like any other man who might have had a decent day job and perhaps even a family of his own. He doesn’t have a single care in the world. He feels a sense of peace and even a deep relaxation; he’s both tired and re-energized. 

This particular man has a desire: a dark secret of an unfulfilled need to prey upon the innocent, snatch them from their secure lives, torture them, murder them, and then leave their tiny remains isolated away from civilization. This driving compulsion will never be satisfied, and the hideous crimes will never be fully solved. The police will never find the little victims’ remains, and families will never receive closure for their unimaginable loss.

Only one promise will prevail, the crimes will continue, remain unsolved and with time eventually be forgotten by the general public. The continuous fantasy re-enactment will never stop as long as the killer is left alive. Death poses the only logical solution to stop this tormenting cycle of death.

The man opens the creaky back doors of the Suburban and takes out two white five gallon buckets setting them down on the trash littered street. The back of the vehicle is cluttered with miscellaneous tools and paint supplies that a painting contractor would most likely use. Upon closer inspection, deeper inside the cargo area, there are handcuffs and shackles fixed to stationary hooks reminiscent of medieval torture chambers. The windows are coated with a thin opaque vinyl that ensures complete privacy.  


Jennifer Chase is a multi award-winning and USA Today BestSelling crime fiction author, as well as a consulting criminologist. Jennifer holds a bachelor degree in police forensics and a master’s degree in criminology & criminal justice. These academic pursuits developed out of her curiosity about the criminal mind as well as from her own experience with a violent psychopath, providing Jennifer with deep personal investment in every story she tells. In addition, she holds certifications in serial crime and criminal profiling.  She is an affiliate member of the International Association of Forensic Criminologists, and member of the International Thriller Writers.

Website: https://authorjenniferchase.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jchasenovelist

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

Dead Game (Book Two)

Dark Mind (Book Three)

Dead Burn (Book Four)

Dark Pursuit (Book Five)

Dead Cold (Book Six)

More Books by Jennifer Chase…

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