Tag Archives: mystery novel

Harkness Book Tour Highlights

Harkness cover

Harkness isn’t your typical Western sheriff. Cowboy boots make his arches ache, he’s phobic of horses, but he does have a horse of sorts – a `39 Chevy pickup he calls Hoopie, and a sidekick – a neurotic wiener dog named Addison.

Harkness is a man of his times, shaped for both good and bad by his experiences in WWII. He deals with issues like bigotry and sexual suppression in a believable manner. We come to know him as a good man, but never a self-righteous one. The pursuit of justice is his job, and he’s good at it, but he never loses sight of where his next woman, or his next drink, is coming from. Harkness is the keeper of secrets in his little town and to solve the crime, he must decide which secrets to expose. One secret involves Judge Barnes, the county’s most powerful man. But Harkness had a secret of his own: he’s in love with the Judge’s wife. How much is Harkness willing to risk to catch a murderer?

Set on the Oregon High Desert in 1952, life in the small town of Barnesville has been easy-going for Matthew until a star-crossed teen-age couple disappears and he’s forced to deal with some horrific murders, one of which strikes very close to home, before finally confronting the killer man-to-man on the High Desert.

Praise for Harkness by Michael Bigham

“If you like western mysteries and conflicted heroes, you should give Harkness a try.” –The Book Connection

“Bigham has done an excellent job with his debut release. He has created a protagonist in Matt Harkness readers will want to visit with again and again.” –Thoughts in Progress

“Definitely a great series for those who love cowboys and the 50’s. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and couldn’t put it down until the killer was nabbed!” –Community Bookstop

“Overall readers who enjoy a fast paced story with more than a few plot twists set during a simpler time and place with down to earth characters that lend the story a sense of authenticity will certainly enjoy ‘Harkness.’ I only hope the author plans on continuing the adventures of Harkness!” –WV Stitcher

“A suspenseful, fun read…I do love a great mystery and this debut novel shouts ‘series’. I recommend it highly.” –CelticLady’s Reviews

“I rarely would give a debut novel a 5 star, but this one earned it fully. I look forward to reading more by this author and hope that this is just the first Harkness Mystery novel.” –Library at the End of the Universe

Guest post blurbs

Jahar Tsarnaev, a popular, seemingly carefree, dope-smoking college student at the University of Massachusetts held a dark secret. He and his older brother planned and executed the Boston Marathon bombings. Not even Jahar’s roommate had a hint that his friend had committed the crime. “I have had almost two weeks to think about it, and it makes no more sense than the day I found out it was him,“ Jason Rowe said in a New York Times interview. “Nothing seemed out of the ordinary.”

We all have secrets. They intrigue us, confound us and as in the case of Jahar they shock us. Secrets drive mystery fiction. Hannibal Lector has a secret passion for human flesh. Hercule Poirot is famous for pulling his mystery suspects together and revealing their secrets one by one until he reveals the biggest secret of all: who is the murderer. When you write your mystery, create secrets. Have your characters guard them closely. They add tension and suspense to your tale.

Read the full post at Murder by 4.

Located smack in the middle of Oregon, Prineville, a small cattle and mill town, is nestled in the Crooked River Valley beneath rimrock plateaus of the Oregon high desert. I grew up there, a small town boy, among cowboys and loggers. During my college years, I fought range fires for the Bureau of Land Management. We bunked in a guard station fifty miles east of nowhere. It was the most amazing experience of my life. Every day, we’d journey up into the pine forests of the Ochoco Mountains or down into the sagebrush and juniper flats of the lowlands. We fought fires on isolated cattle ranches and on farms in lush river valleys.

After college, I spent my working life as a cop. Even then I was a closet writer and, after leaving police work, I decided I wanted write full time. I attended Vermont College and earned an MFA in Creative Writing. When the time came to create my first novel I knew it had to be set on the high desert. With my cop background, the mystery genre was natural.

Read the full post at Marilyn’s Musings.

I must admit I’m a compulsive eavesdropper. I eavesdrop on parents talking to their children at the market, to friends chatting in coffee shops, to couples huddled together in a theater line.

Read the full post at Lori’s Reading Corner.

To succeed as writers, we must master the craft of revision. Not an easy task, as creation and revision require two completely different frames of mind. To create well, we must let our creative self run free and lock our internal editors in a little room, not letting them know what we’re doing. If not, they’ll stifle our process or block us. More than once I’ve rewritten a scene again and again, never being satisfied, never moving on because my internal editor knows I should do it better. So now, I lock her away until my creative self has expressed herself. When I revise, I unlock the door and let my editor out. She hacks and slashes, criticizes my word choice and works to smooth out my narrative.

Read the full post at Acme Authors Link.Michael Bigham photo

Raised in the mill town of Prineville in Central Oregon beneath blue skies and rimrocks, Michael Bigham attended the University of Oregon and during his collegiate summers, fought range fires on the Oregon high desert for the Bureau of Land Management. He worked as a police officer with the Port of Portland and after leaving police work, obtained an MFA degree in Creative Writing from Vermont College. Michael lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and daughter. Harkness is his first novel.

WEBSITE | GOODREADS | TWITTER

 

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Pump Up Your Book Announces Michael Bigham’s Harkness Blog Tour

Harkness banner

Join Michael Bigham, author of the mystery novel, Harkness, as he tours the blogosphere May 6 – June 28, 2013 on his first virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!

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ABOUT HARKNESS

Harkness cover

Harkness isn’t your typical Western sheriff. Cowboy boots make his arches ache, he’s phobic of horses, but he does have a horse of sorts – a `39 Chevy pickup he calls Hoopie, and a sidekick – a neurotic wiener dog named Addison.

Harkness is a man of his times, shaped for both good and bad by his experiences in WWII. He deals with issues like bigotry and sexual suppression in a believable manner. We come to know him as a good man, but never a self-righteous one. The pursuit of justice is his job, and he’s good at it, but he never loses sight of where his next woman, or his next drink, is coming from. Harkness is the keeper of secrets in his little town and to solve the crime, he must decide which secrets to expose. One secret involves Judge Barnes, the county’s most powerful man. But Harkness had a secret of his own: he’s in love with the Judge’s wife. How much is Harkness willing to risk to catch a murderer?

Set on the Oregon High Desert in 1952, life in the small town of Barnesville has been easy-going for Matthew until a star-crossed teen-age couple disappears and he’s forced to deal with some horrific murders, one of which strikes very close to home, before finally confronting the killer man-to-man on the High Desert.

AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE

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Michael Bigham photoABOUT MICHAEL BIGHAM

Raised in the mill town of Prineville in Central Oregon beneath blue skies and rimrocks, Michael Bigham attended the University of Oregon and during his collegiate summers, fought range fires on the Oregon high desert for the Bureau of Land Management. He worked as a police officer with the Port of Portland and after leaving police work, obtained an MFA degree in Creative Writing from Vermont College. Michael lives in Portland, Oregon with his wife and daughter. Harkness is his first novel.

WEBSITEGOODREADS | TWITTER

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January Justice by Athol Dickson Book Blast and $25 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

Reeling from his wife’s unsolved murder, Malcolm Cutter is just going through the motions as a chauffeur and bodyguard for Hollywood’s rich and famous. Then a pair of Guatemalan tough guys offer him a job. It’s an open question whether they’re patriotic revolutionaries or vicious terrorists. Either way, Cutter doesn’t much care until he gets a bomb through his window, a gangland beating on the streets of L.A., and three bullets in the chest. Now there’s another murder on Cutter’s Mind. His own.

Link to purchase: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AGAW6EC

Athol Dickson’s mystery, suspense, and literary novels have won three Christy Awards and an Audie Award. Suspense fans who enjoyed Athol’s They Shall See God will love his latest novel, January Justice, the first installment in a new mystery series called The Malcolm Cutter Memoirs. The second and third novels in the series, Free Fall in February, and A March Murder, are coming in 2013.

Critics have favorably compared Athol’s work to such diverse authors as Octavia Butler (Publisher’s Weekly), Hermann Hesse (The New York Journal of Books) and Flannery O’Connor (The New York Times). Athol lives with his wife in southern California.

Website: http://www.malcolmcutter.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AtholDickson

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Athol-Dickson/416622918355206

Pump Up Your Book and Athol Dickson are teaming up to give you a chance to win a fabulous prize!

Here’s how it works:

Each person will enter this giveaway by liking, following, subscribing and tweeting about this giveaway through the Rafflecopter form placed on blogs throughout the tour. This promotion will run from March 18 – Mar 22. The winner will be chosen randomly by Rafflecopter, contacted by email, and announced on March 25, 2013. Visit each blog stop below to gain more entries as the Rafflecopter widget will be placed on each blog for the duration of the tour. Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If the Rafflecopter form doesn’t load, please visit the JANUARY JUSTICE TOUR PAGE to enter the giveaway: http://www.pumpupyourbook.com/2013/02/27/pump-up-your-book-presents-athol-dicksons-january-justice-book-blast-%E2%80%93-win-25-amazon-gift-card/

JANUARY JUSTICE BOOK BLAST SCHEDULE
Monday, March 18th
Tuesday, March 19th
Wednesday, March 20th
Thursday, March 21st
Friday, March 22nd

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New Book for Review: Bears With Us by Marilyn Meredith

Bears with Us coverMulti-published, award-winning author Marilyn Meredith is touring during the month of October with the latest installment in her Deputy Tempe Crabtree series, Bears With Us.

A burglar turns out to be a bear and Deputy Tempe Crabtree and her pastor husband, Hutch, chase the bear out of the house. This is their first encounter with a bear and the occupants of the home, an elderly couple and their daughter—and it isn’t the last.

A bear turns up at the school, at a restaurant, an apple orchard and two more homes. That is only part of what Tempe is called to handle. A teenager’s suicide, a mother who doesn’t like her daughter’s boyfriend, a wandering senior with a strange form of Alzheimer’s, and a long ago love affair keep Tempe hopping.

220 pages

Visit Marilyn online at http://fictionforyou.com/

If you would like to review Bears With Us or host Marilyn during her virtual book tour, please contact Cheryl Malandrinos at cg20pm00(at)gmail(dot)com. The deadline for inquiries is September 15, 2011 or until the tour is filled. Thank you!

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The Dead Guy

the_dead_guyThe Dead Guy
Author: Doug Hewitt
Publisher: Aberdeen Bay

Rating: 
Reviewed by:  Cheryl C. Malandrinos

Looking for suspense? Looking for action? Looking for an intense read? You’ll find it in The Dead Guy by Doug Hewitt.

Jack Thigpen is sent on what he believes is a routine car insurance scam investigation. But on this one, Jack gets more than he bargained for.

His investigation targets him for death soon after Jack discovers he’s dying from an untreatable, debilitating illness. When Jack’s best friend, Hal, is caught in the line of fire, Jack vows to track down Hal’s killer, as he struggles to accept the fact that he’s going to die–slowly and painfully.

The Dead Guy is one of those books that will leave you begging for more. Jack is a likeable, tough character who is put in a position no human being should ever be–feeling responsible for his best friend’s death when he, himself, is at death’s door. Hewitt’s masterful storytelling allows the reader to experience everything with Jack as he uncovers the evil underbelly of Detroit, which is consumed by corruption, fraud, and organized crime.

Other memorable characters include Jack’s brother, Tom, the only other person who knows of Jack’s illness, and who is forced to deal with the impending loss of his brother while struggling to sit back and let Jack deal with things his own way; Octavia, a tennis champion who Jack used to mentor; and Blalock, whose own complex story unfolds in the background.

This book is a roller coaster ride of action, intrigue, and mystery. Just when you think Jack has it figured out, something throws a monkey wrench into his theory and things are no longer as they seem. The reader will unconciously be biting off fingernails as he follows Jack from car dealerships to body shops to riverboats.

If this book hasn’t won any awards yet, it should!

Riveting, intense, and action-packed, The Dead Guy by Doug Hewitt keeps you hanging on the edge of your seat and turning the pages.

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Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits 
Author: Marilyn Meredith
Publisher: Mundania Press, LLC.
Rating: 
Reviewed by:  Cheryl C. Malandrinos

 

 

Murder, ghostly visions, and a quest for justice are woven together to create an engaging story in Kindred Spirits, the latest in Marilyn Meredith‘s Deputy Tempe Crabtree series.

A forest fire rushes through the mountains of Bear Creek as Tempe searches for local artist Vanessa Ainsworth. When Vanessa’s body turns up inside her burnt out studio with a bullet hole, Detectives Morrison and Richards seek Tempe’s help in finding out who could have behind what might have been a perfect murder.

Even though Tempe and Hutch’s marriage is on the rocks, Tempe takes a trip to Crescent City to visit with Vanessa’s family and friends to see if she can find any clues to who might have wanted Vanessa dead. Tempe’s involvement in the case puts her in danger, but she knows she’ll never be rid of the ghostly visions haunting her until she brings Vanessa’s killer to justice.

In this installment of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series, Meredith brings back Tempe, Hutch, and members of the Bear Creek Sheriff’s Office and gives them a mission: to prove who killed local artist, Vanessa Ainsworth. While in Judgment Fire–the book before this one in the series that I reviewed here–Tempe and the gang had a full slate of suspects, in Kindred Spirits their efforts are combined to prove the one person who couldn’t possibly have committed the crime, did it. And even though I typically prefer a “who done it” kind of mystery, this novel had me on the edge of my seat as Tempe dodged threat after threat to bring Vanessa’s murderer to justice.

Again Meredith has woven Native American history, small town charm, and a quest for the truth to provide an entertaining read for mystery and crime fans. And while Tempe is still dealing with the prejudice of being the only woman in the Bear Creek Sheriff’s Office, she finds Detective Morrison an unexpected ally in this latest installment, perhaps forever changing their working relationship and making me eager to see what the next book will bring for Morrison and Tempe. True to form, Meredith has made the personal lives of her characters an integral part of the story and the reader is eager to see if Tempe and Hutch, her minister husband, can find their way back to each other. Involving Hutch in Tempe’s case makes for many tense moments as they each deal with concern for the other’s safety, even though they are worlds apart on issues that might have forever changed their marriage.

A great read that mystery and crime readers will certainly enjoy, Kindred Spirits proves why Marilyn Meredith‘s fans keep coming back for more!

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