Tag Archives: Thriller

Vincent Zandri: “If I’m out and see a typewriter, I can’t help but type something on it.”

Winner of the 2015 PWA Shamus Award and the 2015 ITW Thriller Award for Best Original Paperback Novel, Vincent Zandri is the NEW YORK TIMES, USA TODAY, and AMAZON KINDLE No.1 bestselling author of more than 25 novels including THE REMAINS, MOONLIGHT WEEPS, EVERYTHING BURNS, and ORCHARD GROVE. He is also the author of numerous Amazon bestselling digital shorts, PATHOLOGICAL, TRUE STORIES and MOONLIGHT MAFIA among them. Harlan Coben has described THE INNOCENT (formerly As Catch Can) as “…gritty, fast-paced, lyrical and haunting,” while the New York Post called it “Sensational…Masterful…Brilliant!” Zandri’s list of domestic publishers include Delacorte, Dell, Down & Out Books, Thomas & Mercer and Polis Books, while his foreign publisher is Meme Publishers of Milan and Paris. An MFA in Writing graduate of Vermont College, Zandri’s work is translated in the Dutch, Russian, French, Italian, and Japanese. Recently, Zandri was the subject of a major feature by the New York Times. He has also made appearances on Bloomberg TV and FOX news. In December 2014, Suspense Magazine named Zandri’s, THE SHROUD KEY, as one of the “Best Books of 2014.” Recently, Suspense Magazine selected WHEN SHADOWS COME as one of the “Best Books of 2016”. A freelance photo-journalist and the author of the popular “lit blog,” The Vincent Zandri Vox, Zandri has written for Living Ready Magazine, RT, New York Newsday, Hudson Valley Magazine, The Times Union (Albany), Game & Fish Magazine, and many more. He lives in New York and Florence, Italy.



Inside the Book:


It’s been eight years since artist and single mom, Rebecca Underhill, was abducted and left to die in an old broken down house located in the middle of the dark woods. But even if her abductor, Joseph William Whalen, has since been killed, another, more insidious evil is once more out to get her in the form of the Skinner. The son of an abusive butcher, Skinner intends on finishing the job Whalen started but failed at.

How is he going to get to Rebecca?

He’s going to do it through her children, by luring them into the cornfield behind the old farmhouse they live in.


Now, armed with the knowledge that the Skinner has escaped incarceration at a downstate facility for the criminally insane, Rebecca must face the most horrifying challenge of her adult life: Rescuing the children not from a house in the woods, but from the abandoned tunnels that run underneath her property.

But the Skinner is watching Rebecca’s every move.

Horrifying question is, will she live long enough to save the children?



What made you decide to become a published author?

I was groomed for the commercial construction industry. You dig enough ditches and mix enough cement by hand, you learn to become a writer real quick.

Would you consider your latest book, The Ashes, to be a one of a kind?  How so?

Well, first of all, I’m the only one who can write that book, and second, I’m not sure there’s anyone else out there writing about The Skinner, the psycho who lives in the cornfield behind your house.

Where is your writing sanctuary?

I spend two months in Italy every year working on a new novel. Otherwise I write at the dining room table, or in an basement office, or a coffee shop. I can write anywhere.

What do you believe a writer should not do as far as getting his or her book published?

Write a great book, then find an agent who is willing to represent it. If that doesn’t work, self-publish it.

What inspires you?

Writers and writing. If I’m out and see a typewriter, I can’t help but type something on it. It’s sort of a disease.

What is one thing you learned about your book after it was published?

It’s time to start the next one.

Why do you love to write thrillers?

Because I love to read them. Plus, literary novels are boring and don’t pay the bills.

You’re concocting a recipe for a best selling book.  What’s the first ingredient?


What’s one fun fact about your book people should know?

It’s the sequel to the No. 1 Overall Amazon Bestselling novel, The Remains.

Did any real life experiences find their way into your book?

I travel a lot. To some pretty sketchy places. I was in Egypt at the tail end of the Arab Spring. A lot of that got into The Shroud Key. The Ashes takes place in a farm house on a farm very close to the spot where I fly fish in a local stream. Geography is important. Some of my novels, like The Innocent and The Corruptions, are based on real events.

Aside from writing, what’s your passion?

Travel, running, weight lifting, fly fishing, hiking, my Jeep, food, beer, good wine, reading, movies, shooting, XTC, The Beatles, Steely Dan, The Jam…lot’s of things.

What’s next for you?

The tenth novel in the Suspense Magazine Award Winning Chase Baker action/adventure series has just been released. It’s called Chase Baker and the Dutch Diamonds. The Detonator will be released in hard-cover by Polis Books in January of 2018. My agent tells me it’s about to be optioned for a feature film, but I can’t yet release the name of the production company. In the meantime, I’ve just finished a new standalone, The Girl Who Wasn’t There, and another Chase Baker, Chase Baker and the Spear of Destiny. Thanks for having me.



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Criminal Injustice by Samuel Francis Book Blast – Win a $25 Amazon Gift Card!



Criminal JusticeTitle:
 Criminal Injustice
Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Author: Samuel Francis
Publisher: iUniverse
EBook: 188 pages
Release Date: October 11, 2010

Brian Wilson lived a quiet, peaceful life as the vice president of a savings and loan company in Albuquerque, New Mexico, until he approved a loan for a certain corporation—a corporation of which Brian was part owner. For this, Brian was sent to prison for twelve months. Upon his release, lesson learned, he became a business consultant, focused on putting his life back in order and taking care of his wife.

Brian throws all his effort into living a normal life—only to find himself the witness of a drive-by shooting. Brian reacts without thinking, thwarting the gang’s efforts and saving the would-be victim, which eventually leads to the incarceration of the gang members involved. Soon after, Brian and his wife began receiving death threats, but because of his past indiscretions, the court will not allow Brian to own a gun.

Brian’s wife owns a pistol, though, and when the gang sends men to kill the couple, Brian uses it to defend them both. In response, the district attorney indicts Brian for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Now, Brian—a heroic citizen who stood up against crime—must rely on a jury to determine his future. Will their decision determine criminal justice … or Criminal Injustice?






Samuel A. Francis earned his juris doctor degree from the University of New Mexico Law School in 1966. He has been a practicing attorney since September of that year. Criminal Injustice is his fifth book.

Pump Up Your Book and Samuel are teaming up to give away a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • 1 winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive each of the prizes
  • This giveaway begins April 28 and ends on May 9.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on May 10, 2014.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.

Good luck everyone!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

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New Book for Review: ‘To Speak for the Dead’ by Paul Levine

To Speak for the Dead KindlePaul Levine is touring in June with his thriller novel, To Speak for the Dead. A doctor in love with his patient’s wife…A fatal mistake during surgery…Accident? Malpractice? Or murder?

Defending a surgeon in a malpractice case, Jake Lassiter begins to suspect that his client is innocent of negligence…but guilty of murder. Add a sexy widow, a deadly drug, and a grave robbery to the stew and you have the setting for Miami’s trial of the century. “To Speak for the Dead” introduced the world to Lassiter, the linebacker-turned-lawyer with a hard bark and a tender heart. An international bestseller, Paul Levine’s debut novel was named by the Los Angeles Times as one of the best mysteries of the year. The 20th Anniversary e-book edition of “To Speak for the Dead” is offered at the introductory price of $2.99. All author proceeds go to Penn State’s Hershey Children’s Hospital for cancer treatment and research.

282 pages

You can visit Paul’s website at www.paul-levine.com.


If you would like to review To Speak for the Dead, email us by clicking here or email Dorothy Thompson at thewriterslife@yahoo.com. Deadline for inquiries end May 25 or until the tour is filled. Thank you!

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New Book for Review: N.H.I. by Ray Ellis

No Humans InvolvedRay Ellis is touring in June with his thriller novel, N.H.I.: No Humans Involved. Half of Treasure City is controlled by a violent street gang. The other half is controlled by fear. A rookie detective, Nate Richards, is thrust between the two. Abyss, a mysterious street gang moves into the valley and people have started dying. Nate’s girlfriend suddenly disappears and the gang is being targeted as the cause. With his partner fighting for her life – the result of a vigilante’s bullet, political pressure from above, and time running out to find his missing girlfriend, Nate has to overcome the darkness that has taken over the city and threatening to consume his soul. Forced to fight to stay on the case, he has to work against his command and the elements of the streets while trying to hold on to his faith that seems to make less and less sense as details unfold. With darkness growing and evil seeming to swell, will Nate have enough time to solve the murder and discover the identity of the new gang leader before his girlfriend becomes the latest victim in the growing violent total? Will he succumb to get the job done by any means necessary, or will he become part of the problem and prove that there are No Humans Involved?

Book Excerpt:

Chapter One
The body of the teenage boy lay face down in the gutter, his bandana, his colors, still clenched in his fist, floated in the water beside him. Blood mixed with rain raced in a gurgling stream down the drain splashing noisily as it made its way to the river.
What had it gained him? What had he proved? These were a few of the questions that flashed through Detective Nate Richards’ mind as he studied the crime scene. Summer rain washed over Richards’ lean frame, soaking his loose brown curls to the scalp. Flexing a muscle in his jaw, he lifted a hand to wipe water from his face. The street light reflected off of his cocoa-colored skin twinkling in the early morning darkness. “Who’s calling the scene?” Nate asked the group of four uniformed officers standing near a row of patrol cars, their overhead lights casting a rainbow effect on the wet pavement.
Three of the four uniformed men walked toward Nate. He looked between the men, and finding the corporal stripes directed his comments to them. “What d’ya’ got, Benson?” he asked, reading the name tag that went along with them.
“Another one down. One less to worry about shooting me in the back,” Corporal Chad Benson muttered under his breath while using his hand to squeegee rainwater from his short blond hair. He chuckled to himself as he walked past the body headed for his patrol unit. He glanced at Nate as he passed.
“Does the phrase crime scene integrity mean anything to you, Benson?” Nate said.
“What’s your problem?” Benson said in a harsh whisper. “It’s not like it means anything. They breed like rats down here. Who cares if they kill each other off? We’ll have two more by week’s end. Mark my word. And it won’t even make a difference.”
The two uniformed officers with Benson smiled at their team commander’s remarks. One of the men stared at Nate, holding his gaze for an extra heart beat longer than necessary before turning away. Nate made a mental note to remember the men’s names.
“Stow it. Now.” Nate cut his gaze to a woman sitting on the curb rocking and hugging herself. The dead teen’s mother. Grabbing Benson by the shoulder, Nate pulled him off to the side. “You can’t see?”
Benson snatched his arm from Nate. “What?”
“You okay, Bens?” one of the other officers called and stepped toward Nate.
“Johnson, right?” Nate asked, making sure he had the man’s name correct. “Is this the way you run a crime scene?” Nate had directed the question to Benson.
Looking down the desolate street, Nate pointed to the nearest intersection. “Block that off and get some cones out in the street to keep paramedics and everyone else from driving through my crime scene.”
Johnson looked at Nate but didn’t move.
“You got a problem with that, Patrolman?” Nate asked.
“Go ‘head,” Benson said, stepping between the two men. “Look, Detective, we do just fine. You take care of your stuff and I’ll take care of mine.”
Without responding Nate turned away from the officer and approached the woman, hoping she hadn’t overheard Benson’s comments or noticed the patrolmen’s cavalier attitudes.
Shielding his notepad from the rain with his arm, he checked the comments he’d recorded there. He cleared his throat. “Mrs. Fuentes? I’m Detective Nate Richards, Treasure Valley Metro Police Department. I need to ask you a few questions.”
The woman raised her dark eyes, like dead pools, lifeless and cold, to meet Nate’s expectant gaze. “What does it matter? We breed like rats anyway, right?” She pulled her jacket collar tight around her neck and turned away from him.
So much for her not having heard, Nate thought. He stooped to meet the woman’s gaze. “Mrs. Fuentes…”
“Miss. I’m not married. But, I guess that’s okay when you’re only a Cricetomys emini, huh?”
Struck by the woman’s beauty, Nate thought she didn’t look much older than a teen herself. “Miss Fuentes,” he began again, “A what?”
“A pregnant rat,” she said, anger coloring her voice.
Nate broke eye contact for the briefest of moments, but watched her, gauging her movements. “I apologize for the officer’s crudeness. There’s no excuse for his behavior. I also assure you that his is not the general attitude of the police department.” Nate was sincere in his response, but knew avoiding an officer complaint was a good idea as well.
The woman stood abruptly. She looked again at her son lying dead in the street, took a breath and seemed to gather herself. “Can I take him now?”
“I’m sorry Mrs.—Miss Fuentes, but the body can’t be released until the coroner has been called and finishes his examination.”
“You gonna cut up my baby? You gonna cut him open and play around inside him? For what? We know what killed him. The bullets killed him. Just let me take him and put him to rest.”
Nate looked over the woman’s shoulder at Officer Benson sitting in his patrol unit out of the rain and wished that it was Benson standing in the rain having to explain the bad behavior instead of him. Benson sat leaning back in the passenger’s seat stuffing the last of something into his mouth.
“Miss Fuentes, I’m sorry, but certain things have to be done and then—”
“I don’t care. You want to assure me you don’t see my son as some kind of second class citizen? You find the man who killed him and you make him pay.” She walked away, her shoulders heaving as she struggled against the sobs shaking her entire body. Stopping a short distance away, she leaned against the wall and stood there absorbed by the shadows.
Nate stormed over to the patrol car and pulled open the door. “Benson, you’re a pig.”
Benson looked up, a smear of mayonnaise stuck in the corner of his mouth. “What? What’d I do?”
Nate looked in the direction the woman had disappeared. “You couldn’t see the mother sitting not fifteen feet from you? What were you thinking?”
“NHI, man. Why should I get all bothered over nothing?”
Nate clenched and then relaxed his fist. He inhaled and blew out his breath in one explosive sigh, water vapor springing from around his lips. Without speaking he turned and walked away. Kneeling beside the body, he began his investigation while fighting to control his anger at Benson’s callous behavior.

308 pages

You can visit his website at www.rayellis-author.com.


If you would like to review N.H.I., No Humans Involved, email us by clicking here or email Dorothy Thompson at thewriterslife@yahoo.com. Deadline for inquiries end May 25 or until the tour is filled. Thank you!

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Honor Due – Review

Honor Due
Author: D.H. Brown
Publisher: Big River Press
Reviewed by: Lamees Siddiqui

Honor Due is a gripping story of an ex- Special Forces vet who retires from the life of politically orchestrated killings and retreats to a life of peaceful solitude in the Pacific Northwest…..until, hunted by ex-colleagues from Special Operations and Homeland Security, the Major, our protagonist, finds the gruesome memories coming to life, from his war shattered past.


The instinct for survival takes precedence and soon a mysterious plot bridging the past to the present, starts to unravel. The Major’s new assignment is to ensure his own as well his Rhade family’s survival while giving the fallen Warriors, the ‘honor due’.


It is a well written thriller, the mere tone of which is enough to raise the hair on your back. The casual narration of repugnant killings, gives the book an eerie quality. The electronic wizardry, the web of security firewalls and high tech computer jargon are enough to make Mr. Bond cringe with envy. The graphic descriptions are vivid engaging all the six senses, definitely tickling the taste buds and fanning one’s appetite; however, in some parts of the narrative, the repetitive details of routine chores, tend to drag somewhat.


Apart from telling a great story, the book also makes a serious and decisive statement about the ethics and the code of honor of a true Soldier; about the ‘War on Terror’ and how it is manipulated as a pretense for mysterious political contract killings on domestic soil.





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