Thursday, July 23, 2015

.99 eBook Sale on Stranger in Town -- This Week Only!

This week you can get Stranger in Town, book four in my Sloane Monroe mystery series, for .99. (Regularly priced at $4.99). Stranger in Town is a Shamus Award finalist, and 226 five-star reviews on Amazon.

Buy It Here: 


Six-year-old Olivia Hathaway tiptoes down the center aisle of Maybelle's Market, stopping once to glance over her shoulder and make sure her mother isn't watching. But Mrs. Hathaway is too preoccupied to notice her daughter has slipped away. Minutes later, a frantic Mrs. Hathaway runs up and down the aisles, desperately searching for her missing daughter. But Olivia is already gone. Will PI Sloane Monroe find her before it's too late?

Monday, July 20, 2015

Featured Author: Carol Davis Luce

My friend Carol Davis Luce is one of the first authors I got to know when I published in 2011. She's been writing for decades, and her talent shines through in her wonderful body of work. A perfect example of that is her novel, Night Cries, about a thirty-year-old woman named Maddie who has no memory of her adoption, and is haunted by her haunting past. With a 4.9 star rating, this is a perfect example of Carol's impressive talents. 

Carol has a lot of great insight into the writing industry, and she was gracious enough to share her thoughts on the writing biz below with all of you:

If the path of my writing career were a chart, it would resemble a picket fence. Extreme up and downs over a thirty year period. I wasn’t born to write, but when I did take it up later in life, I jumped in with both feet and wrestled the beast to the ground. After the success of five traditionally published novels, my career suddenly stalled. However, I didn’t give up. Just changed direction by becoming a novel writing instructor for the next generation of aspiring authors.      

Fast-forward fifteen years. My good buddy, bestselling author J. Carson Black, encouraged me to join the twenty-first century. I converted those five novels into digital format where they found a whole new audience of modern day e-readers.

The good times didn’t stop there. Last year, with the help of a group of smart and exceptionally talented writers (waving at Cheryl Bradshaw), I became a New York Times bestselling author. It doesn’t get any better than that!

Success Begins Where Others Quit. That was my motto through the years. Take your knocks and move on. Develop a thick skin. Take comfort in those good days of writing where everything falls into place. Associate with people who lift you up. The first check I received for my writing was $10 for 3rd Place in a magazine writing contest. It wasn’t much, but it validated me as a writer and was a portent of good things to come.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Eye for Revenge - Chapter One Sneak Peek

Chapter One: Free Sneak Peek 

Evie Richelle soared down the cracked sidewalk, legs spread, rubber tires spinning. Summer was here at last, fanning a soft, warm breeze through the air that slapped her uncombed, blond locks against her face like willows in the wind. Her new Roadmaster Aerobee Renegade bike was everything she’d asked for in a bike, only it wasn’t new. It was something her Grandma Ruby called “vintage.” Eleven-year-old Evie didn’t know what the word “vintage” meant, and she didn’t care either. As far as she was concerned, it was cool. And cool suited her just fine. 

Tough and yellow, the bike had a brawny bee painted on the side. But the bee wasn’t what Evie loved most. It was the way the wide handlebars curved down at the ends. When her fingers wound around the stiff, rubber grips, she no longer felt like she was on an ordinary bike—she felt like she was on a motorcycle. 

A few minutes earlier when she whizzed by the house next door, Ronnie, the boy who lived there, shook his head and said, “You’re a girl. Why are you riding a boy’s bike?”

Evie snickered and replied, “No duh. Why do you play with Barbie’s?”

Ronnie’s eyes widened. “Do not!”

“Do too!” 

And he did. She’d seen him one day through her bedroom window. She was one-hundred-percent sure it was him too because he had the most oval-shaped head of any boy she’d ever seen. It made him look like an extraterrestrial. So much so, sometimes she imagined what he’d look like if he pulled his head off his body, revealing what he really looked like underneath.


Ronnie threw a stick, narrowly missing Evie’s head. She thought about turning around, waving her middle finger in his direction, something she’d seen her grandmother do once when they were in the car together on the freeway, but she didn’t. He’d just tell his mother, his mother would tell her grandmother, and her bike would be taken away.

No crybaby was worth that. 

Besides, she had places to go.

She stuck her tongue out and cranked her foot down on the pedal before Ronnie reached for a handful of gravel. Ronnie hurled the small rocks into the air, aiming for her head, but his pitch was weak. Nothing hit her. Not a single one.  

Crisis averted, Evie reached the park and rolled to a stop. She hopped off the bike, leaning it against a sawed-off trunk of a tree. She was debating whether or not it would be safe to leave it there when she heard a sound—a voice—someone screaming. She climbed the grassy hillside to investigate. In the sand in front of the swings, she saw a girl who looked to be about her same age. The girl was on her knees. She was crying. But not just crying. Out and out bawling. Two boys hovered over the girl—one of them taunting, laughing—the other awkward and still. The boys looked older by maybe a year or two. Given she could only see the backs of the boys’ heads, it was too hard to tell their ages for sure. 

She needed to get closer, check things out.

“What’s the matter, little girl?” one of the boys teased. “Did someone take your swing away?”

“My name’s not ‘little girl.’ It’s Quinn, and you pushed me!” 

“It’s our turn on the swings,” the same boy said. “Besides, what are you going do about it?”

Apparently nothing.

Evie waited, giving Quinn a full minute to buck up and defend herself. But the girl remained where she was, staring at the ground, still crying. 

“Hey!” Evie yelled. “Maybe she’s not gonna do something about it, but I will.”

The boy responsible for the taunting roared with laughter until he turned around, saw Evie standing in front of them, one of her fists raised in front of his face.

The other boy said, “Evie? What are you doing here?”

Evie ignored him, looked at Quinn, noticed a tear in the knee of her thick, light blue stockings, sand scattered throughout her long, dark pigtails. Evie looked up at the boy who addressed her. “Roman Tanner, say you’re sorry!”

“He’s not gonna do that,” the other boy said. “We told little girl here to get off the swing and she didn’t. Too bad if she got scraped up when I booted her. She should have done what I asked the first time.”

Roman stood still, his eyes never leaving Evie as he said, “Dylan, maybe we should—”

“You kiddin’ me?” Dylan said. “No way. Don’t let a girl tell you what to do.”

Evie drilled her fist straight forward. It connected with Dylan’s nose. Blood splashed out.

Quinn gasped. Roman froze. Evie produced a smug smile.  

“Did … you … see … what … she … did … to … me?!” Dylan cried.

Evie turned her attention to Roman. “Say … you’re … sorry. Do it!”

Roman raised his hands in front of him. “All right, all right. I’m sorry!”

“Not to me, you idiot,” Evie said. “To her.”

Roman pressed his eyes together until they were tiny slits. “Sorry. Okay?”

“Like you mean it,” Evie scolded. 


“Good. Now get out of here. Both of you.”

The boys turned and went, Dylan shooting Evie a look like she may have gotten her way this time, but it was far from over. Evie didn’t care. Grandma Ruby always told her bullies were usually the biggest wimps of them all, and looking at the tear trailing down Dylan’s cheek now, she believed her.
Evie held out a hand, Quinn took it and stood up.

“Wow,” Quinn said. “They’re really scared of you.” 

“Not me, my Grandma Ruby. She’s friends with Roman’s grandma. He knows what would happen if I told her what he did. I wouldn’t though. I’m no squealer. And I’ve learned how to take care of myself. You should too.”

Quinn shrugged. “Yeah, I guess so.”

Evie knew Quinn wasn’t the type of girl to defend herself though. One look at Quinn’s blue dress and matching hair bows, and she knew everything she needed to know. She was soft, easy, the perfect kind of girl to tease. And she was thin, a lightweight. Evie imagined if she jabbed her with a pinkie finger she’d tip right over again.

“Why haven’t I seen you before?” Evie asked.

“We just moved here a couple weeks ago.”

“Who’s we?”

“My mom, dad, and my … umm … sister.”

“Younger or older?” Evie asked.


“Your sister.”

“Younger.” Quinn rolled her eyes. “She’s a pain. Follows me around everywhere.”

Evie smiled. Maybe Quinn wasn’t so sweet after all. “I’m Evie.”


“What grade are you going into this year?”


“Me too. Who’s your teacher?”


“Hey, mine too.” Quinn may have dressed a little too girly for Evie’s tastes, but Evie admired the chain she wore around her neck. It was silver with two hearts interlocked around each other. “Cool necklace, by the way.”

Quinn reached a hand behind her, unclasped the necklace, held it out to Evie. “It’s yours.”

“Oh, hey. You don’t have to give it to me just because I like it.”

Quinn dropped the necklace into Evie’s hands. “It’s okay. I want you to have it. Friends?”

Evie nodded. “Have you met anyone else since you moved here?”

“No, why?”

“I was wondering if you wanna hang out with me this year at school.”

Quinn shrugged. “Sure.”


In the distance, Evie heard someone calling Quinn’s name.  

“That’s my mom,” Quinn said. “I have to go. See you around ’kay? Hopefully we’ll be together next time those boys come around again.”

Evie swished a hand through the air. “Aww, don’t worry about them. When you’re with me, I won’t ever let anything bad happen to you.”


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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Protect and Serve: A NEW Novella Collection .99 for a limited time!

From rookie cops to special ops, this collection celebrates all those who protect and serve! 

This anthology includes 11 never before published novellas from New York Times & USA Today bestselling authors. 

.99 Limited Time Only



Included in this exclusive edition: 

J.M. Madden - Her Secret Wish

Sharon Hamilton - True Navy Blue

Amity Cross - Rebel (A Men of The Underground Novella)

Stacy Green - Shots Fired (A Cage Foster/Delta Detectives Novella)

Jamie Lee Scott - Uncertain Blue (an Uncertain Novella)

Allie K. Adams - Brace for Contact

Hildie McQueen - Tea, Theft, and Scones

Cheryl Bradshaw - Dead of Night (A Sloane Monroe Novella)

Carra Copeland - Lilah by Midnight

Jenna Bennett - Overcome

Danielle Stewart - Running from Shadows

Monday, July 6, 2015

Featured Author: Gary Ponzo

Gary Ponzo is an outstanding author who is also part of the thriller group The Twelve, a group I am also a member of. Combining the minds of twelve authors all writing in the same genre definitely has its advantages. Over the past year, we created the Flight 12 novella series, releasing one book a month for an entire year, and Gary's new installment marks the end of that project. 

Recently I wrote Gary and asked if he would guest on my blog and offer advice to new authors. Here's what he had to say:


Ever wonder why so many musicians end up singing duets together? Do they just like each other so much that they want to work together? Sometimes. Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin-or course. Kid Rock and Sheryl Crow? Hmmm.

More times than not, however, the incentive is usually money. How? Well, it's all about crossover sales. The band or singer's fans are introduced to an entirely new group of listeners who hadn't known much about that band until that big due together. Think Stevie Nicks and Tom Petty's "Stop Dragging my Heart Around." You think that didn't help those two artists reach over and capture the other artist's fans? You bet it did. Or more recently Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga. Now there's an interesting couple.

Why would I bring up collaboration on Cheryl Bradshaw's blog? Because writers have been collaborating for as long as musicians have. James Patterson publishes ten books a year. You think he's doing all that writing by himself? The reason I bring this up is because I was invited to participate in a collaboration myself. Indie superstar J.A. Konrath recently invited me to write a Nick Bracco thriller which included his famous Jack Daniels character. The book is titled A Touch of Tequila, because all my Bracco books start with A Touch of ... and Tequila Abernathy is another one of Joe's characters.

However, the main reason I bring this to Cheryl's readers is because it was her phone call which convinced me to participate in the Flight 12 series. The series of stories from twelve NY Times bestselling authors had been released once a month for the past year. We’re talking about Diane Capri, Cheryl Bradshaw, J. Carson Black, Vincent Zandri, Allan Leverone, Aaron Patterson, Michele Scott, A.K. Alexander, J.R. Rain, Joshua Graham, Brett Battles, Carol Davis Luce and Robert Gregory Browne.  There’s not a slouch in the group. Every one of them is a terrific writer.

So when they agreed to trust me with writing the finale to the series I jumped at the chance.  Once I read each installment of the series (and I suggest you do the same) I was thrilled to put the finishing touches to the year-long story these phenomenal writers had constructed.  You must understand, however, there was a lot of pressure on me to write a cohesive narrative that was exciting, plausible, and tied up the questions that readers of the series had been waiting for.  What happened to Flight 12?  Did it plunge into the ocean?  Was it hijacked?  Was there mechanical failure?  All these things had been considered, plus I had to go with the suggestion of Lisa Klein, who won the Flight 12 contest allowing her to choose the ending.  Great choice Lisa.   

So is this partnership all about the money? Partially sure. But let's face it, The Twelve authors will receive the benefit of gaining some new Nick Bracco readers, and I'll certainly benefit from an introduction to part of their enormous fan base. At no point, however, would I ever publish something inferior just for a payday. This is all about the future and expanding my reach. If I can establish a large enough fan base on my own, it will make it so much easier to transition into a full time writing career. And after all, isn't that what we writers all dream about? The ability to write all day? 

Thank you Cheryl for making that phone call.  I enjoyed discussing this project with you and I hope you enjoy what I’ve done with the Flight 12 finale. And more importantly, I hope your readers do too. 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Pre-Order Eye for Revenge, Get Dead of Night FREE!

Pre-order Cheryl's upcoming release of Eye for Revenge TODAY, and you'll receive a copy of her new Sloane Monroe novella Dead of Night for FREE! Every single person who pre-orders gets the novella free for a full two months before the book is released! (Novella will be sent around the middle of July)

To qualify, follow these two simple steps:


Pre-Order Eye for Revenge on one of these retailers

Amazon     Barnes & Noble     Kobo     iBooks     Google play


Fill out this form to claim your free book: CLICK HERE