Friday, February 19, 2016

Weekly Roundup: February 19, 2015

Welcome again to the Oak Tree Press Weekly Roundup! Our authors have once again provided us with some good reading in their guest posts this week. Eileen Obser gave us a sweet start to the week with a Valentine's Day post on writing about love. Then J.L. Greger used her expertise to add a post about science in fiction. Don't miss out on these extras, and please jump in with comments and questions for the authors and the OTP community.

Still on the hunt for your next good read? We've been adding new titles to the OTP bookstore, and our longtime favorites and recent bestsellers are there for you as well. We've got books for every taste and interest!

Since we're publishing on our blog today, we'd be remiss not to honor one of the celebrated writers of our time, Harper Lee, who died today at the age of 89. Lee won the 1961 Pulitzer Prize for To Kill a Mockingbird, and her Go Set A Watchman, first written in 1957, was published last year. Regarding the former, The New York Times recounts that Lee once told a radio interviewer, “I never expected any sort of success with ‘Mockingbird.’ I was hoping for a quick and merciful death at the hands of the reviewers, but, at the same time I sort of hoped someone would like it well enough to give me encouragement.”

Thank you for stopping by for the roundup this week. Here as always, for your reading pleasure, we have the week's news, book signings, events, reviews, blogs, and more from our authors to share with you.


"And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen
Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.
"
~William Shakespeare (from A Midsummer Night’s Dream)



A reminder from Jeana: All OTP books are on Manic Readers!
Need help choosing a great book to read?
Check out our sample chapters on
Just click on a title and you will be directed to a free read! These sample chapters are updated frequently, and new releases are featured. Recently added titles include Dizzy in Durango, A Perception of Murder, and Something to Die For.





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LATEST RELEASES

We’re excited to announce our latest releases! 

Something to Die For, by Robert Richter, is the latest in the Cotton Waters series. In the novel, Cotton Waters is a gringo expatriate in exile on the Mexican west coast, an illegal alien and ex-political activist with old and unresolved legal problems in the U.S. Known to his cantina buddies as "Algo," or "Something" in Spanish, for years he's scrounged a lazy fishing village lifestyle and a little beer money out of the Puerto Vallarta tourist trade as tour guide, cultural consultant, and a private hustler of a Mexican Riviera lost-and-found -- helping some people get lost and finding others -- if the price is right or the client's cause worth the time and interest. 

Also available for Kindle and Nook.

About the author: Robert Richter is the author of eight books, including poetry, fiction, and regional history. Robert has a forty-year relationship with Latin America, and that cultural geography inspires his work. In 2000 Richter won the Nebraska Arts Council’s Literary Achievement Award for nonfiction, and in 2007, he was a Fulbright Research Fellow in Buenos Aires. Richter has also been a wheat farmer, substitute teacher, and tour guide in Latin America. His other books on Mexico include Something in Vallarta (1991), Something Like A Dream (2014), Something for Nothing (2015), Search for the Camino Real: A History of San Blas and the Road To Get There (2011), and CuauhtĂ©moc Cárdenas and the Roots of Mexico's New Democracy (2000). Robert's Cotton Waters mysteries are set on Mexico's western Riviera.

At the Crossroad by Amy M. BennettAt the Crossroad is the fourth in Amy's Black Horse Campground mystery series.

Trouble often comes in threes. It's no different at the Black Horse Campground. On his first day as detective with the Bonney Police Department, J.D. Wilder finds three cold case files on his desk—three women who disappeared over a fifteen year period. It seems no one has ever taken the cases seriously... or even properly investigated them. Then J.D. receives news that he's about to receive a visitor, a woman from his past who is in trouble and needs his help. Again. The timing couldn't be worse, since he's finally about to ask Corrie on a date, but then Corrie also has a visitor from her past show up. And Sheriff Rick Sutton has his hands full dodging his ex-wife, Meghan, who insists on digging up a painful past. When three bodies are discovered that prove the missing women were murdered, J.D.'s investigation reveals that all of their visitors have some connection to the victims. But which one of them killed three women . . . and is prepared to kill again?

Also available for Kindle and Nook.

About the author: Amy M. Bennett was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. She is a 1985 graduate of Father Yermo High School and attended the University of Texas at El Paso. In 1988, she married her husband, Paul, and moved to Alamogordo, New Mexico, where she attended New Mexico State University Alamogordo, and, with the exception of a six-month stint in Mt. Kisco, New York, has been a resident of New Mexico ever since.

She currently works as a cake decorator at Walmart in Ruidoso Downs, New Mexico (this is her fifteenth year with Walmart) and has been a "vino slinger" at Noisy Water Winery in Ruidoso, New Mexico, for the last two years. She has been a "closet" novelist for over twenty years and has an impressive collection of rejection letters to show for it! Her End of the Road started as a project for National Novel Writing Month in 2009; it won the Oak Tree Press Dark Oak Mystery contest in 2012. She's then wrote two more titles for the series, No Lifeguard on Duty and No Vacancy. Amy and her husband currently reside in Bent, New Mexico, with their son, Paul Michael, who grew up believing that having a mother who writes mystery novels is normal.

 
Ichabod Wolfe by Frank Fiordalisi. 

"Frank Fiordalisi has written a wonderful book, a page-turner, filled with surprise and a deep understanding of the human condition." -- Rick Sapp, author the Great Uncle series

"Don’t let the title or the vibrantly rendered 1860s Kansas setting fool you, Ichabod Wolfe is more than western or a detective thriller. Frank Fiordalisi vividly delivers the tale of one good man, from boyhood into middle-age, in a time before law and order was the order of the land.  Ichabod Wolfe is a character who will stay with you for a long time, a quietly smart man who keeps his head -- and his heart -- in the face of perversity and corruption, an investigator in the time before the certainties of fingerprints and DNA. A good yarn, a trial of justice, well told. -- Rhonda Riley, author of Adam Hope 

"Ichabod Wolfe doesn't fit the stereotype of an Old West lawman. Forensic law ahead of its time in the Wild Wild West!" -- Bonnie Ogle, author of Arthur the Arthropod 

Also available for Kindle and Nook.

About the author: Frank Fiordalisi was born in NYC and attended St. John’s University, where he received a B.S. in pharmacy. After teaching high school science, he returned to the practice of retail pharmacy. He later moved to Miami, Florida, and joined the Miami-Dade County Police Department, where he served in a number of assignments, retiring as a detective sergeant after twenty-nine years of service. He has a daughter, Jacqueline, and a son, Francis. He currently lives with his wife, Christine, in Gainesville, Florida.



REVIEWS & INTERVIEWS

Mary Montague Sikes was interviewed on Barbara Hodges's Red River Radio program No Limits on February 16.

Mary talks about how she's evolved as a writer since she began putting pen to paper in the 1980s. She also talks about the road to being published and her preference about having her characters surprise her while she's drafting her stories.  

She does a lovely job responding to the interview's stimulating questions and reveals how some of her writing habits evolved from her days as a journalist. She also talks about how her travels are part of the research she does for her novels.

Mary reads from most recent novel, Evening of the Dragonfly, during the interview, which you can enjoy in its entirety here.

In the novel, threatening telephone calls and strange cars with dark-tinted windows plague artist/teacher Farrah Ferand. Recovering from the tragic loss of her mother, Farrah is trying to adapt to the life of a small-town art teacher when she encounters Dirk Lawrence, a mysterious stranger. Her attraction to him is immediate and electric until Farrah discovers Dirk is part of the Lawrence and Pendesky investment firm that led to her mother's downfall a few years earlier.

Farrah's not too perfect dating relationship with Tom Douglas, the town favorite football coach, worsens. An unexpected encounter leads to dates with Dirk and his help with the construction of a dream art studio in her rented house. But trouble looms with Tom who believes he and Farrah are engaged, and the entire town appears to be drawn in. Haunting dreams and lost memories overwhelm Farrah as she creates paintings for a one-person art show. Will shadows of the past ruin all hope for Farrah and Dirk?


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OTP authors were again featured this week on the promotional site Ebook Bump. The site gives a synopsis, shows reviews, and publicizes titles on Twitter.

Amy Bennett's No Lifeguard on Duty, the second in the Black Horse Campground mystery series. Summer is coming and at the Black Horse Campground in Bonney County, New Mexico that means warm sunny days, a cool refreshing pool, and . . .murder? Corrie Black and her friends are ready to welcome the summer camping season with a party to celebrate opening the swimming pool, but murder becomes an unwelcome guest. 

The shock of discovering Krista Otero's body in the pool the morning after the party is bad enough. What's worse is that Krista's death wasn't an accident. And what's more confusing is that Krista's closest friends all have something to hide. Despite opposition from Bonney County's finest, Corrie is determined to find out who used her swimming pool as a murder weapon and who is using her home as a base for illegal activities. But someone wants to keep Corrie out of their business . . . even if it means killing again.

Amy's novel No Vacancy, the third in her mystery series, was also featured. An ominous note is shoved under the door of the Black Horse Campground store as Corrie Black and her staff celebrate the first “no vacancy” day of the season. But is the note meant to be a warning or a threat?

When a man suspected of writing the note is found dead in a cabin, it seems that the threat is averted. Until the man's identity is revealed. Someone from Corrie's past. Someone who knew a lot about the Black Horse family -- a lot more than even Corrie knew. With the help of Bonney County Sheriff Rick Sutton and former Houston PD Lieutenant J.D. Wilder, Corrie has to dig into the past, into secrets that her parents kept, to find out who is threatening her and the Black Horse Campground and what it is they want from Corrie. But the deeper she digs, the more she finds out things that could change her life forever, if not end it!

Lorna K. and Larry Collins's 31 Months in Japan: The Building of a Theme Park was also featured this week. After spending thirty-one months in Japan building the Universal Studios Japan theme park in Osaka and even more time in the US preparing for the trip, they felt an obligation to honor those who created the only theme park ever to be completed ahead of schedule and under budget. Many readers say that the book has proved very valuable for travel, working, and learning about not only the country and the people but also about the behind-the-scenes processes required to build a world-class theme park. The book was written to honor all of the authors' colleagues – Japanese, American, and others – who made the park happen, with a special dedication to Raouf Iskander, a colleague they lost during their time in Japan.




UPCOMING

Mary Montague Sikes is the featured member on the front page of the Chesapeake Bay Writers Club website during the month of February. 

On Saturday, February 20, she'll be teaching a collage/mixed media workshop from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Arts on Main in Gloucester, Virginia.   

Mary is the author of both novels and nonfiction books published by OTP. You can read about these books as well as her artistic projects at her website.

Her most recent novel is Evening of the Dragonfly. Threatening telephone calls and strange cars with dark-tinted windows plague artist/teacher Farrah Ferand. Recovering from the tragic loss of her mother, Farrah is trying to adapt to the life of a small-town art teacher when she encounters Dirk Lawrence, a mysterious stranger. Her attraction to him is immediate and electric until Farrah discovers Dirk is part of the Lawrence and Pendesky investment firm that led to her mother's downfall a few years earlier.

Farrah's not too perfect dating relationship with Tom Douglas, the town favorite football coach, worsens. An unexpected encounter leads to dates with Dirk and his help with the construction of a dream art studio in her rented house. But trouble looms with Tom who believes he and Farrah are engaged, and the entire town appears to be drawn in. Haunting dreams and lost memories overwhelm Farrah as she creates paintings for a one-person art show. Will shadows of the past ruin all hope for Farrah and Dirk?



 
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Children’s book author and artist Beryl Reichenberg will be teaching two upcoming paper craft classes for children. On Friday, February 19, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., she'll be at Studios on the Park in Paso Robles, California

Then on Saturday, February 28, she'll be at the Santa Maria Valley Discovery Museum in  Santa Maria, California, from 3 to 4 p.m.

Beryl will be showing the children how to make another pop-out form at these classes. She explains thatpop-ups and pop outs are very popular with children. This form is a pop out of a house. It’s easy to make with some folding and only two cuts. I’ll encourage the children to draw their own family surrounding their house.”

She'll be selling her own children’s picture books at both events. Among her many titles for children are six titles from OTP: Ants on a Log, Butterfly Girls, Camouflage, Clowning Around, When Caterpillars Dream, and The Mysterious Case of the Missing Birthday Cake.

Beryl has another giveaway scheduled for Wednesday, February 17, at the Whiz Kids toy store in San Luis Obispo, California. She writes, "This store has been supportive of my writing from the very beginning. They have copies of all my books including my new picture book, Dancing with Leaves, which is the subject of this giveaway. I try to support this toy store whenever possible, and it is heartening to have such great support." 

You can read about her writing and art projects at her website.











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Channing Whitaker will be promoting his novel Until the Sun Rises - One Night in Drake Mansion, at the Houston Author Bash in Katy, Texas, on Saturday, February 20, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The event is being held at the Cellar Door wine bar, and Channing will be one of more than three dozen authors participating in the event.

Eighty years ago, a wealthy Midwest family returned home from a magic show, after which neither they, nor the magician, Malvern Kamrar, were ever heard from again. When several bystanders died in their mansion, the house was sealed. After nearly a century of rumors and haunted stories, for a live TV event the mansion will be opened, allowing five contestants to spend one night and win their share of a million dollars. The contestants: a psychic, a high-tech ghost hunter, a Hollywood scream queen, a local woman, and a skeptic, fuel excitement as each tries to solve the mystery. 

Upon entering, the journal of the family patriarch, Vinton Drake, is discovered, illuminating the mystery, rooted all the way back to Vinton’s service as a medic in WWI, when he first met the magician. Departing from the familiar haunted house tale, this story explores the very nature of belief in the supernatural, with consequences more frightening than any ghost story. Intensity sours when the contestants discover their lives, and thousands more, are in genuine peril. Is the mansion haunted? What fate befell Malvern and the Drake family? And will the contestants uncover the truth in time to save themselves? 




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Virgil Alexander will be at the Peregrine Book Company in Prescott, Arizona, on Saturday, February 20, to reading, discuss, and sign of his latest novel, The Baleful Owl. The event begins at 2 p.m. at the bookstore, which is located at 219A North Cortez. 

Also keep an eye out on Sunday, February, 21, when Virgil will be a guest author on our OTP blog.

In The Baleful Owl, The murder of an archeology student and attempted murder of a second pull Apache Tribal Officer Al Victor into what seems to him a senseless killing. The Arizona Antiquities Task Force brings Deputies Bren Allred and Manny Sanchez into the case.

They find themselves investigating a sophisticated high dollar artifact theft ring centered around the unique Baleful Owl effigy. The ruthless ring leader is not motivated by greed, but vengeance for imagined wrongs. Before the case is solved one of the officers will be the unwitting target of the skilled assassin.


 





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Serita Stevens will be sharing her expertise as an award-winning writer of books, scripts, and adaptations and a teacher of writing, at Women Helping Women in Entertainment on Sunday, February 21, from 1:30 to 4:30 pm at the Los Angeles Film Studies Center. Her topic will be the pros and cons of pitching. Complete details appear the program website.

Then on Friday, February 26, Serita will be speaking at the West Coast Writers Conferences' Digital Author and Indie/Self Publishing Conference, which will be held at Los Angeles Valley College. Her talks that day will include "Plot versus Character" and "The Crucial First 10 Pages."

Serita is the author of the forthcoming Heathen Heart and Deceptive Desires. The latter is a classic story of the American frontier in which a young woman travels to the town of Ruby City, Montana, to find her twin brother, but he does not meet her stagecoach. Though unnerved, she must find her own way in this rugged and unfamiliar country. 

You can read more about her many projects at her website. 


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David Freedland's Lincoln 9 will be available for sale by request at the Oregon Reserve Police Officers conference being held Saturday, February 27, in Keizer, Oregon.

Lincoln 9 follows the career of Lieutenant Scott Hunter, the consummate cop who rises to the level of responsibility to lead a team of detectives on a mission aimed at connecting the clues and solving these crimes. The story conveys the pressures associated with working within an organization that hires only 4% of its applicants, and whose efforts result in perennial accolades for achieving the lowest numbers of violent crime.

Readers who enjoy the challenges of attempting to solve crime dramas will appreciate the first third of the book, which provides opportunities for the suspect’s identification. In addition, it introduces a look behind the curtain of secrecy shielding the role played by Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) teams in the development of leaders.







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Amy Bennett will be holding a launch party for her upcoming novel At the Crossroad, the fourth book in her Black Horse Campground Mystery series, on Sunday, February 28, at Noisy Water Winery from 2 to 4 p.m.

The winery is located at 2342 Sudderth Drive in midtown Ruidoso, New Mexico, and is the home of Jo Mamma's White table wine, which makes an appearance in Amy's novels.

The party will feature special discounts and a drawing.

In the novel, trouble often comes in threes, and it’s no different at the Black Horse Campground. On his first day as detective with the Bonney Police Department, J.D. Wilder finds three cold case files on his desk—three women who have disappeared over a fifteen year period at five-year intervals. It seems that no one has ever taken the cases seriously . . . or even properly investigated them.

Then J.D. receives a visit from two former colleagues who inform him that he’s about to receive another visitor; a woman from his past who is in trouble and needs his help. Again. The timing couldn’t be worse, since he’s finally about to ask Corrie on a date, but then Corrie also has a visitor from her past show up . . . someone who’s hoping for a second chance with her. In the meantime, Sheriff Rick Sutton has his hands full dodging his ex-wife, Meghan, who insists on discussing personal business with him -- business that has to do with digging up a painful past.

When three bodies are discovered that prove the missing women were murdered, J.D.’s investigation reveals that all of their visitors have some connection to the victims. But which one of them killed three women . . . and is prepared to kill again?


RECENT

Mary Montague Sikes reports that she enjoyed teaching a collage/mixed media workshop at Arts Alive in West Point, Virginia, on February 3. She shared a photo of the artists who attended the class to hone their skills and learn new ones under Mary's expert guidance.




 

ADVANCE NOTICE

Additional details about these events will appear in future Roundups. 



Oak Tree Press authors will be attending the Tucson Festival of Books on the University of Arizona campus in Tucson, Arizona, on the weekend of March 12 and 13. The festivities begin each day at 9:30 a.m. and end at 5:30 p.m. 

The festival features exhibits, author presentations, panel discussions, and of course, books!





NOW AVAILABLE FOR NOOK

We’ve been busy always adding many OTP ebooks to the collections available for Barnes and Noble's Nook readers and apps. E-books are perfect for budget-conscious or on-the-go readers who like to have a library at their fingertips. Remember: you don't need to own a Nook device to read e-books. You can read on your computer, smartphone, or tablet by downloading the Nook app from Barnes and Noble.

The Baleful Owl by Virgil Alexander. The murder of an archeology student and attempted murder of a second pull Apache Tribal Officer Al Victor into what seems to him a senseless killing. The Arizona Antiquities Task Force brings Deputies Bren Allred and Manny Sanchez into the case. They find themselves investigating a sophisticated high dollar artifact theft ring centered around the unique Baleful Owl effigy. The ruthless ring leader is not motivated by greed, but vengeance for imagined wrongs. Before the case is solved one of the officers will be the unwitting target of the skilled assassin. 



Damsels of Diversion by Walter Luce. Born unwanted -- because she is a girl instead of a boy -- into a banking empire, Eva Pennington, at the age of twenty-three, inherits three banks after her father commits suicide. While computerizing her banks, Eva realizes that women control ninety percent of the deposits in her banks, yet men make all of the decisions as to what to do with those deposits. She uses this knowledge to form a woman’s bank, securing huge deposits, and power, to become the largest banking institution in Florida, Georgia and soon to be Tennessee.



The Fourth Rule by Douglass Seaver. The fog of war hides many secrets, but rarely a good one. The Fourth Rule tells the story of one secret born when a Green Beret   returns from Vietnam and disappears. Two decades later, the CIA approaches the soldier’s younger brother, Matthew Grant, to uncover what happened. Matthew denies knowing anything, but the CIA doesn’t believe him, and thus begins an intense struggle between the CIA, hell-bent on protecting its own and continuing its illicit clandestine activities, and a not-so-ordinary citizen, who has to risk it all to protect his secret and right a terrible wrong from the past.



 Guns of the Texas Ranger by Dac Crossley. When Texas Ranger Ygnacio ("Nacho") Ybarra slips across the border into Mexico, he is surprised by bandits and taken to confront an old acquaintance, Pancho Villa. The revolutionary leader charges NAcho to assist in corralling a rogue outlaw, Chulo Valdez. But that bandit lures Nacho into an attack on his own Ranger Company. Guns of the Texas Ranger, volume one in the Border Trilogy, is a tale of Rangers Whitey Wilson and Red Regan and the girl they both love. And their search justice during the border wars, when only a small Ranger Company stands in the way of bandit raids. And how Ranger Nacho Ybarra prevented a war. 


Green Ice by I.C. Enger. Brooke Breckenridge, Special Agent Jack Strickland and Native American Shadow Wolf, Ed Red Wind, plunge into their most complex mystery. Brooke is busy at the Makkapitew Planning Office when she learns that development can be deadly. Suspects includes a wife-abusing drunk, Mideastern land developers, hate crimes aimed at the Catholic Church, and Russian mafia trafficking Ukrainian girls cross the Mexican border. As bodies pile up and sick animals swamp the Makkapitew Veterinary Clinic, the puzzle comes together. Join Brooke, Jack and Ed as they once again rub elbows with danger. And a word of advice, stay out of the mountains.



Healer by John M. Wills. Sixteen-year-old Billy Anderson’s short life has been full of daunting challenges. A birth defect and the death of his parents force him to live with his Aunt Staci. That situation becomes untenable for Billy and he chooses to live on the street. One day things change dramatically when Billy receives the “Gift of Healing.” Not only does Billy’s own life take a dramatic turn, but his new gift also affects those around him. Is this gift a blessing or a curse? 





Hooperman: A Bookstore Mystery by John M. Daniel. Hooperman Johnson works as a bookstore cop, catching shoplifters in the act. It’s a difficult job for a man with a stammer, but somebody’s got to do it, because Maxwell’s Books is getting ripped off big-time. The store is also fire-bombed twice during the course of the story. Set in the summer of 1972, the summer of the Watergate break-in, Hooperman is a bookstore mystery without a murder, but full of plot, full of oddball characters, full of laughs, and full of love, some of it poignant, some of it joyful.

 



Karl and the Kooltones by J.S. Quelch. Karl is a cynical, melodramatic, mildly paranoid, professional-engineer-cum-musician in the throes of a midlife crisis. Growing up on a farm in the post Woodstock Midwest, coming of age in The City as Disco rose and Punk fell, passing his prime in The Suburbs as a family guy and director of the band Karl and Kooltones, music is the common thread of Karl’s journey. His art imitates his life as he transitions from relatively innocent youth playing tuba in a small time polka band, to rebellious heavy metal guitarist achieving not-enough-to-quit-the-day-job success, to fading middle aged lounge singer still on a Don Quixote like quest to keep the dream alive. But the thread is unraveling. His third wife and true soul mate has died, he is hopelessly caught in the corporate meat grinder, and the band is sadly floundering.


The Last of the Railroad Police by Carl Moen. In the 1950s, Chicago was a great railroad center, and its Proviso yard was the largest in the world. Times were hard in the Eisenhower Fifties, and I had a young family. When I heard it would pay $80 a month more, I had to take it on. Looking back, it surprises me that I lived through it all: the fights, the gun play, arson, even a brush with the mafia. More dangerous were men so anxious to carry a gun, they’d work the job for nothing. All of this is true. Walk with me down the tracks and I’ll show you what it was like to be the last of the railroad police.


No Lifeguard on Duty by Amy Bennett. Corrie Black and her friends are ready to welcome the summer camping season with a party to celebrate opening the swimming pool, but murder becomes an unwelcome guest. The shock of discovering Krista Otero's body in the pool the morning after the party is bad enough. What's worse is that Krista's death wasn't an accident. And what's more confusing is that Krista's closest friends all have something to hide. Despite opposition from Bonney County's finest, Corrie is determined to find out who used her swimming pool as a murder weapon and who is using her home as a base for illegal activities. But someone wants to keep Corrie out of their business . . . even if it means killing again!


The Piano Player by Carolyn Neithammer. When well-bred Mary Rose follows her dream to rowdy 1882 Tombstone, she quickly discovers that her sheltered life has not prepared her for the challenges of being a piano player in The Bird Cage Theater. Help comes from her landlady, Nellie Cashman, proprietor of The Russ House. Though vastly different, the two women both must thrive in world outside of society’s norms. Upon leaving Tombstone, their lives diverge, but come together again with old friends to hike the treacherous Chilkoot Pass and seek their elusive fortunes in the 1898 Klondike gold rush. Together they deal with a lover who turns out to be a murderer, imprisonment in a Mexican jail, near death falling into the icy Yukon River and disappointment when their quest for gold is dashed. They postpone romance with the men who love them, until for one, it becomes too late.
 


Strangers, Lovers and the Winds of Time by Dale Lovin. When brutal assaults target a former prosecutor in Los Angeles and an FBI Agent in New Mexico, it becomes apparent that revenge is the motive, stemming from the trial and conviction of a white supremacist for murder of a black man. Religious fervor fuels a torrent of crime as purveyors of hate launch a campaign of violence to punish the persons who led the investigation and trial of the convicted supremacist.





Tink's Tank by Gary Best. Tink's Tank chronicles the adventures of the crew members of a U.S. Eighth Air Force B-17 during WW II. The narrator tells his tale in response to a request from his granddaughter who is enrolled in a college course about the history of WW II. He tells her about each of his fellow crew members, the people they meet during their war time experiences in England, the locale for most of the story. Crew members of Tank’s Tank find themselves involved in experiences in London and between themselves that transform each as they fight to stay alive in air battles that test their courage and stamina as a crew. It is more than a coming-of-age story and more than a story of the air war over Europe—It is the interactions and connections of events, people, fact and fiction that foment growth, change and deliverance from the past. Tink's Tank takes one on an adventure and returns the reader to post-war life through twist and turns in the epilogue.


Until the Sun Rises by Channing Whitaker. Eighty years ago, a wealthy Midwest family returned home from a magic show, after which neither they, nor the magician, Malvern Kamrar, were ever heard from again. When several bystanders died in their mansion, the house was sealed. After nearly a century of rumors and haunted stories, for a live TV event the mansion will be opened, allowing five contestants to spend one night and win their share of a million dollars. The contestants: a psychic, a high-tech ghost hunter, a Hollywood scream queen, a local woman, and a skeptic, fuel excitement as each tries to solve the mystery.

Upon entering, the journal of the family patriarch, Vinton Drake, is discovered, illuminating the mystery, rooted all the way back to Vinton’s service as a medic in WWI, when he first met the magician. Departing from the familiar haunted house tale, this story explores the very nature of belief in the supernatural, with consequences more frightening than any ghost story. Intensity sours when the contestants discover their lives, and thousands more, are in genuine peril. Is the mansion haunted? What fate befell Malvern and the Drake family? And will the contestants uncover the truth in time to save themselves?



The Wooded Path by Nancy LiPetri. Ever wonder if you’re normal? Laine McClelland sure does. When the mysterious disappearance of a Bunco friend, Paula, shakes her Lake Norman neighborhood, her seemingly perfect world is suddenly filled with dark thoughts, dangerous temptations and surprising confessions. What is normal once you realize life’s short, anyway? Was her marriage ever enough? She finds herself risking it all . . . and afraid of what really happened to Paula.






BLOG CORRAL

Jackie Taylor Zortman hosted writer Barb Kent on her on her blog, Jackie's Mountain Memos. Jackie writes, "My guest writer today is Barb Kent who is a budding writer that is very close to bursting into bloom. It won’t be long until she’ll be writing on her own blog or have a book out there for all of us to read.  Enjoy her Valentine’s Day prose.

Barb's letter is titles "A Valentine Love Letter (and Apology) To: Me -- From: Me."

You can read it here.

 Then on February 18, Jackie shared her award-winning short story "Amanche" Amache is a compound that the US government used to as an internment camp for Japanese Americans during WW II.

The air grew warmer and heavier as they descended from the high altitude of the mountains and entered the flatter terrain of eastern Colorado. After lunching in Canon City, she changed into a short sleeved tee and repacked the long sleeved flannel shirt  she’d put on earlier in the cold mountain air of the western slope where they lived. It had been snowing. By evening, they were in Lamar where they would spend the night before journeying onward toward Wichita, KS.

He was the chief of police in a Colorado mountain town and sometimes it was wise to  take a few days of vacation and get out of town. His wife was never allowed to have any public political opinions and she always had to dress well and smile whenever she appeared in public, even if only running downtown to fetch the mail. There is no home delivery in their little tourist mecca to this day.

After entertaining out-of-town guests one weekend and being totally annoyed with the waitress who ignored the fact  they were dining with friends, and repeatedly came back to their table to interrupt and complain about someone or something, the time seemed right to pack their bags and head out. It provided great freedom for them to become anonymous somewhere where they were just another couple on vacation.

The morning air of the next day was crisp, but promised to become sunny and hot. After coffee and donuts, the favorite cuisine of all cops, they once again headed eastward. After driving 18 miles, and just west of the town of Granada, they saw the sign  they were searching for. It was tacked on a huge cottonwood tree on the right side of the highway. It wasn’t more than a foot square and it was painted white. Simple black block letters spelled out “AMACHE” and an arrow pointed down a brown and deeply rutted dirt road that seemed merely to cross farmland. They turned right onto the road. . . . 

You can read the rest of the story here.
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Ilene Schneider was a recent host for Amy Bennett's At the Crossroad blog tour, and this week she recalls that visit by sharing three of Amy's New Mexican recipes for foods that have appeared in the Black Horse Campground mysteries.

Ilene writes, "Ten days ago, Amy M. Bennett, author of the Black Horse Campground mystery series, wrote about imbuing her books with local flavor. As a follow up, here are three of her New Mexican recipes that appear frequently in her books."



You can get them here. Ilene invites you to "Enjoy -- and try not to drool all over your computer."
 
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Amy Bennett's Back Deck blog hosted J.L. Greger, who wrote about her latest novel, I Saw You in Beirut and talks about what revs up her imagination as a writer.

J.L. writes, " What revs up authors’ imaginations? Pet peeves, news headlines, travel, and memories are all sources of novel ideas. The list is endless.

"The initial ideas for I Saw You in Beirut, my latest international thriller, came from two main sources: my pet peeve that there are so few woman protagonists in thrillers and my love of exotic locations."


Pet peeves as a source of inspiration? You can read the intriguing post here.


GOODREADS GIVEAWAY

OTP is giving away a copy of Track Three by John H Gibson on Goodreads. The giveaway runs from February 14 to February 21. It's easy to participate in the giveaway by following this link.

You'll need to create a Goodreads account or log in (you're already on Goodreads as an OTP author or avid reader, right?). Then just enter your address to complete your entry. Winners will be notified at the end of the contest.


Readers come along for the ride when a popular and top-rated investigative journalist, Elliott Lawder, and Katherine Lambert, a street-wise black British street urchin, are thrown together by the untimely death of an NSA Systems Analyst. Follow the adventure of our hero and heroine as the story moves at break-neck speed from Washington to London to Brussels to The Netherlands as the two attempts to discover the answer to why every US Security Agency, including the NSA and the CIA, are trying to kill them. 


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That wraps up the Roundup for this week! We hope you enjoyed our news.
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4 comments:

Amy Bennett said...

Wow! What a great roundup! So glad to see our books available on NOOK now and so many of our readers will be happy as well!

Thanks for the tribute to Harper Lee. Truly a great writer and inspiration to us.

Jackie Taylor Zortman said...

Once again, a long, interesting and very well done Round Up. Good job to Nancy, Billie and Jeana. Yes, I agree with Amy about the nice tripbute to Harper Lee.

Dac said...

Thanks for the shoutout about "Guns of the Texas Ranger." I've got a new one coming for you soon. Keep up the good work with the blog.

Beryl Reichenberg said...

I'm not sure whether we are all busier lately or whether Nancy is doing such a good job getting the word out in the weekly roundup. I suspect it is both. Good job everyone! And a nice tribute to Harper Lee, too.