Giveaway & Review – Stolen by Carey Baldwin @CareyBaldwin @partnersincr1me

Stolen

by Carey Baldwin

on Tour February 14 – March 3, 2017

MY REVIEW

I am engrossed from the opening page of Stolen by Carey Baldwin and read this edge of the seat suspense in one sitting.

The hot and sexy investigative team of Cassidy and Spencer heat up the pages as they descend on Denver in search of a monster. The duo may sound a bit familiar? Are they a combination of some that we know and love?

Laura is missing. It is the second time in thirteen years, and some question whether she is the victim or the perpetrator arises.

The psychological terror Laura is under keeps her confused and unsure, doubting her own innocence and what is real. No one around here is helping her and she doesn’t know who she can trust.

With all she has been through, Carey Baldwin has created a strong character, filled with doubt yet determined to find the truth and stop the monster.

I silently urged her to reach out to Caity and Spense. Spense is with the BAU and Caity works along side him as a consultant, but I like the direction Carey Baldwin took.

There are times when I question the direction Carey Baldwin took, but who’s to say what any of us would do if we walked in Laura’s shoes and it keeps the story going in the direction Carey she has chosen. After all, Laura is not a cop, a psychologist or a profiler.

Very quickly, I had my first suspect. His attitude and conduct is sickening and he really pissed me off. He makes a fantastic villain.

That shopping scene is super CREEPY.

Then comes suspect #2 and #3.

There are plenty of twists and turns and Carey Baldwin’s use of misdirection kept me doubting my choice of the serial killer.

Two thumbs up for this fast paced, nail biting suspense and the cast of characters that had me loving them and hating them…you know who you are…

I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of Stolen by Carey Baldwin

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos 4 Stars

SYNOPSIS

Is she missing…or a murderer?

When Laura Chaucer, daughter of a U.S. senator, vanishes from her college campus, celebrated FBI profilers Special Agent Atticus Spenser and forensic psychiatrist Dr. Caitlin Cassidy are called in. Thirteen years ago, Laura and her nanny disappeared from her family’s Denver home. Laura was found alive, but her nanny wasn’t so lucky… and the killer was never caught. Laura could identify him—if only she didn’t have a deep, dark hole in her memory.

Now she’s missing again. Did the troubled young woman run away or has the kidnapper returned? As women who look eerily similar to Laura’s nanny begin turning up dead, the Chaucer family psychiatrist renders a disturbing opinion: Laura is unstable, a danger to herself and others. Who knows what terrible secrets lurk in the shadowy recesses of her mind? Cassidy and Spenser must solve one of the most infamous cold cases ever to uncover the answer: Is Laura a killer, or is a monster still out there, waiting to claim another victim?

Book Details:

Genre: Suspense, Thriller
Published by: Witness Impulse
Publication Date: February 14th 2017
Number of Pages: 352
ISBN: 0062495542 (ISBN13: 9780062495549)
Series: Cassidy & Spenser #4
Purchase Links: Amazon 🔗 | Barnes & Noble 🔗 | Goodreads 🔗

Read an excerpt:

Chapter One

Twilight

Somewhere in the Rocky Mountains

Consciousness was the enemy and Laura Chaucer its captive. No matter how badly she wanted to flee into a dark, unseeing void, the menacing chill of the knife pressed against her neck forced her to keep her chin high and her eyes open. As her pulse raged, pounding against the deadly blade, she wondered, horrified, if it was possible for her throat to slit itself.

If only her mind would drop into an abyss. If only she could crawl into a black hole and escape awareness, at least then she wouldn’t suffer. Cowardice dragged her eyelids shut.

Stop running away.

From deep within, a voice demanded she bear witness to her own death.
Like broken wings beating against a gale, her eyelids fluttered up. Evil had been swirling around her for as long as she could remember, but she’d never had the courage to face it. Now, in her last moments, she must find the will. Before she left this twisted world, she needed to know the truth.

Who are you?

The answer she’d been running from her entire life loomed right behind her.

But the knife prevented her from swiveling her head to confront the bastard. A defiant move like that would surely cost her whatever precious seconds she had left. His breath, warm on her cheek reeked of booze, its stench curdling in her already woozy stomach.

Careful not to move her head, she braved a glance down and noted a wood floor.

Where am I?

A candle nub flickered in the dark; its yellow light illuminating patches of dust caked on an uneven plank tabletop. Bare log walls surrounded her. Eager for more clues, she sniffed. The scent of rain and earth hung heavily in the air. He must’ve stolen her from her room and brought her to a cabin—a primitive one.

Who was he?

You know, the voice within insisted. Stop pretending you don’t.

“I-I don’t know anything,” she answered, as if he and her thoughts were one and the same. “P-please, just let me go.”

The knife slipped across her throat, leaving fire trailing in its wake. Blood, warm and sticky, dribbled down her chest. Her head became heavy. The room spun. It would be so easy to let her chin fall, to drift into blessed unconsciousness, to leave it all behind.

But that would mean dying the same way she’d lived: running from the truth.

It’s not too late. As long as you have one breath left, there’s still time to change your craven ways.

Watching the blood, already darkening from contact with the air, snake between her breasts, she took it all in, and a gasp agonized its way up her throat.

She was naked.

Bound around the waist, chest and ankles to a chair.

It all seemed so…unreal. But the scrape of splintered wood beneath her bottom, the shivers that wracked her body from the frigid air, told her this was no dream. This wasn’t another one of her ubiquitous nightmares.

If she closed her eyes now, she’d never wake up.

Her throat burned with the urge to scream. But sensing that might give him pleasure, she clamped her teeth together, stuffing her fear down deep. She inhaled a fortifying breath through her nose. Wiggled her freezing fingers. But when she tried to shift her arms into a more comfortable position, she found that they, too, were tied to the chair, just up to the elbows. He’d left her hands and lower arms free, giving her enough slack to cross her palms in her lap and cover herself. Tears of gratitude for this small kindness welled in her eyes.

Maybe he of the knife had a tiny, shriveled semblance of a heart.

He proved he did not by dragging the jagged blade across her neck again—a shallow retracing of its former path that produced exquisite pain and more hot red blood. The need to cry out shook her body so hard the legs of the chair rattled against the floor. Then he pressed the knife’s point into the hollow of her neck—that spot that ought to be reserved for a lover’s kiss. It was as if this monster could not decide whether he wanted to kill her with a long, decimating swipe or by a swift, stabbing impalement. She didn’t know whether he was deliberately prolonging her agony or working up his nerve.

A spasm of fear knotted her toes. Her vocal chords trembled from the impossible effort of restraint. Finally, she opened her mouth, releasing a hysterical noise.

He wanted to hear her scream? Let him hear her laugh instead. Her pulse bounded harder against the blade, but she no longer feared the consequence.

Whether he revealed himself to her or not, she suddenly didn’t care. It didn’t matter who he was. It only mattered who she was. Relief flooded her entire being, drenching her in joy.
Her death would be a victory.

Because it answered, once and for all, the question that had haunted her since the age of eight.

She was not a murderer.

Excerpt from Stolen by Carey Baldwin. Copyright © 2017 by Carey Baldwin & WitnessImpulse. Reproduced with permission from WitnessImpulse. All rights reserved.

Kudos for Carey Baldwin:

JUDGMENT, the first book in my Cassidy & Spenser Thriller series, has been named one of the “BEST BOOKS of 2014” by SUSPENSE MAGAZINE.

Both JUDGMENT & CONFESSION are BOOKSELLERS BEST AWARD Finalists JUDGMENT is a DAPHNE DU MAURIER AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN MYSTERY/SUSPENSE Finalist and a SILVER FALCHION finalist.

ABOUT CAREY BALDWIN

Carey BaldwinCarey Baldwin is a mild-mannered doctor by day and an award-winning author of edgy suspense by night. She holds two doctoral degrees, one in medicine and one in psychology. She loves reading and writing stories that keep you off balance and on the edge of your seat. Carey lives in the southwestern United States with her amazing family. In her spare time she enjoys hiking and chasing wildflowers.

Catch Up With Ms. Baldwin On:
Website 🔗, Goodreads, Twitter 🔗, & Facebook 🔗!

Tour Participants:



GIVEAWAY

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours for Carey Baldwin and William Morrow | WitnessImpulse. There will be 5 US winners of one (1) eBook copy of Stolen by Carey Baldwin. The giveaway begins on February 12th and runs through March 5th, 2017.

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Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

 

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Giveaway & Excerpt – Under Gemini by Linda Hope Lee @lindahopelee @PrismBookTours


On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

Under Gemini
by Linda Hope Lee
Adult Romantic Suspense
Paperback & ebook, 234 Pages
February 8th 2017 by The Wild Rose Press, Inc.

Reeling from the deaths of her ex-husband and their nine-year-old daughter, Meg Evans suspects foul play in the mysterious auto accident. Clues lead her to Gemini Island, where she goes undercover cataloging Northwest Indian artifacts while conducting her own investigation. She doesn’t count on having to work with the enigmatic and handsome Eric Richards.

Artifact expert Eric has hidden reasons for coming to Gemini, and he doesn’t relish working with anyone who might thwart his search for answers. Will they keep their true identities and their missions hidden? Or can they learn to trust each other and together discover Gemini’s terrible secret?

GoodreadsAmazonBarnes & NobleWRP

EXCERPT

At last, a man approached. In his twenties, he was short, solidly built, and had his black hair pulled into a ponytail. Olive skin and a round face with a flat nose suggested Northwest Indian ancestry. A leather vest hung open over a brown T-shirt, and the ragged hems of his jeans draped over scuffed work boots. When he reached the shelter, he stopped and looked first at Meg and then at her companion. “You the ones going to Gemini?”

The man waiting stepped forward.  “I am. I’m Eric Richards.”

“I’m going there, too,” Meg said. “Megan Evans.”

“Jones, here to pick ya up. Boat’s at the marina.” He thumbed over his shoulder to the docks. “Here, lemme take that.” He nodded at Meg’s suitcase and held out his hand.

“Thank you.” Meg turned over the suitcase and fell into step behind him.

Eric Richards picked up his canvas bag and caught up to Meg. “Are you visiting the island? A friend of Carl’s?”

“No, this is my first trip there. I’ve been hired to work on the artifacts for Carl’s new museum.”

He raised his eyebrows. “So have I. But I didn’t know anyone else was coming on board.

“Me, neither.” Meg clutched the strap of her tote. “Mr. Miller’s assistant, Kent Gheller, hired me a week ago. He didn’t mention there would be anyone else.”

“I’m in the software biz, but Northwest native art is a special interest of mine. Carl hired me as a consultant.”

“I’ll be cataloging the collection.”

“Then it looks like we’ll be—”

“—Working together,” they finished in unison.

About the Author

Linda Hope Lee

Linda Hope Lee writes contemporary romance, romantic suspense, and mysteries. She enjoys traveling especially to small towns in search of story ideas. She’s also an artist, specializing in watercolor, pen and ink, and colored pencil. Photography provides inspiration for both her writing and her art. She lives in the Pacific Northwest, where many of her stories are set.

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Tour Schedule

February 11th: Launch
February 12th: Mythical Books, fundinmental & Katie’s Clean Book Collection
February 13th: Paulette’s Papers & Wishful Endings
February 14th: Mel’s Shelves & Becky on Books
February 15th: Rockin’ Book Reviews & The Silver Dagger Scriptorium
February 16th: Zerina Blossom’s Books & Nicole’s Book Musings
February 17th: Grand Finale

Tour Giveaway

– 1 winner will win a $50 Amazon eGift Card and a copy of UNDER GEMINI (ebook if international, print if US)
– 3 winners will win a copy of UNDER GEMINI (ebook if international, print if US)
– Ends February 21st

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All Too Real – Giveaway – Redemption by Jaye Frances @jayefrancesnews

Redemption is the finale of the World Without Love trilogy by Jaye Frances

The sensitive and adult nature of Jewel’s story may not be for everyone, but I must say, I am glad that I walk on the wild side and stretch my horizons, so I don’t miss fabulous books like Redemption!

I was reading along and I saw…Sherry. The character is the house shrink for Jewel’s new boss. Cool…I’m in a book. And I must say, I am very good at my job. LOL

Redemption (World Without Love, # 3)

Amazon  /  B&N  /  Goodreads

MY REVIEW

Because Redemption is Book III in the World Without Love series, even the blurb may contain more information than you want to know.

Redemption is the finale for the World Without Love trilogy and I must say Jaye Frances did not let me down. I have come to expect excellent writing and a storyline that makes the book unputdownable and she has done that from beginning to end.

Jewel’s story began in Book I, Betrayed, when she was forcibly kidnapped…beaten, raped, tortured and sold. Human trafficking is an ugly business and she lives the horror that human slavery entails.

This has been a terrifyingly realistic novel of one woman’s journey through a nightmare you cannot imagine if you don’t walk in her shoes. It has been an all too real glimpse into man’s inhumanity and debasement of other human beings.

I cringed, shivered, screamed and raged. I am disgusted, ready to pick up a gun and take care of them myself…but that would be too good for them.

She made a friend or two along the way, sometimes the most unlikely person was the one to come to her aid. She is a woman driven to survive and save the woman left behind.

I love the direction Jaye took for the next stage of Jewel’s life. It caught me by surprise and that doesn’t happen often enough.

I love trying to figure out a character’s motivation for their actions. Whenever Jewel felt doubt or needed a nudge to do what’s necessary, she would think of Annie and the torture and fear that are her life. Her desire to save Annie, drove her.

Jaye Frances’ excellent writing and the depth of Jewel’s character shows a strength and determination that makes me think, somehow, she will be okay. I have been eagerly anticipating how Jaye Frances will wrap up this series. 

The ending…amazing! Fabulous! Not what I thought it would be, but then none of this story was and the twists and turns, the good and bad, kept me mesmerized and believing…this could be a true story.

All the chips are on the table…

“…Life can be like a poker game and you just never know who’s holding the winning hand.”

I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of Redemption by Jaye Frances.

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos 5 Stars

GOODREADS BLURB

In this final chapter of “World Without Love,” Jewel is rescued from Bangkok’s evil flesh markets by a covert government agency. Haunted by her last memories of Annie, Jewel vows to do whatever it takes to find her friend—hopefully in time to save her from Gregory’s sadistic and murderous intentions. In her new position as an embassy hostess, Jewel forms alliances with political attaches and power brokers, hoping one of them can help her find Annie—still alive.

Recognizing Jewel’s special assets, her supervisors offer her more responsibility, releasing her from the constant scrutiny of the all-seeing agency network. Jewel quickly realizes she’s been granted another advantage, one her superiors could not have anticipated: the chance to extract revenge on all those who attempted to destroy her life.

But again, the hand fate touches Jewel’s heart, forcing her to choose between the new man in her life and the one who helped her escape a dismal world of enslavement and cruel domination.

Excerpt from Redemption:

A Note From the Author . . .

Redemption is the third and final book in the World Without Love series. The series is a continuing story and meant to be read in sequence, beginning with Book One, Betrayed, followed by Reunion, and concluding with Redemption. All books in the series are available in eBook and paperback.

The World Without Love series contains mature content and is intended for an 18+ audience

* * * * * *

My second day started early. Katherine met me in the cafeteria for a quick breakfast, then shuffled me off to a small corner office in one of the buildings adjacent to the Fortress.

“Do you want me to take notes?”

“No, I want you to listen and learn. Here we use our memory instead of paper.”

I felt my stress level rising. I’d anticipated a few challenges, and now, meeting Katherine’s expectations would be one of them.

Today’s lesson was brief—two hours—and consisted of an overview of the department’s mission and how it operated as a “shadow” organization within the embassy’s allegedly transparent political environment.

“Any questions?” she’d asked.

“How does all of this take place without someone finding out? I mean, aren’t there politicians or public watchdogs for this kind of thing?”

“Always.”

“And that doesn’t bother you?”

She squinted at me. “Does it bother you?”

I decided to tell her the truth. “I could give a shit.”

The left corner of her mouth lifted in frustration. “We’ll have to work on that.”

The rest of the day was all about the paperwork.

Looking over the shoulder of a data specialist, I verified page after page of personal online information, then watched as he methodically made revisions to reflect my new identity—one far more vague and obscure.

“We’ll add a few shadows and eliminate some of the details. It’s all for your safety.” The guy tapping away at the keyboard—he’d introduced himself as Ronnie—was surprisingly friendly and efficient. He was also young and geeky, probably hired right out of college with a killer degree in computer science. “I’ll also do a little image manipulation on the photos,” he added. “The more doubt we can cast on your past identity, the less likely you’ll be surprised by someone who takes an interest and tries to research your history.”

“What do you mean by takes an interest?”

“Could be anything. Infatuation, curiosity, even someone who recognizes you from high school.”

I couldn’t imagine the odds of bumping into someone from San Diego, here in Thailand. He answered my question before I could ask it.

“It’s rare, but it happens. I see your husband was in the Navy. Even though his discharge occurred prior to your marriage, he still keeps in touch with several of his friends from the service. Some of them you’ve met. The ones you haven’t may have seen pictures of you. And if you ran into them, they might recognize you.”

“From a picture?”

“It’s the impression they formed from the picture. Because you’re attractive, they would want to recognize you. If you passed them on the street, it might trigger something in their memory.” He paused. “And then there’s always simple fate. It’s hard to predict what the future has waiting for us.”

I was a living testament to that.

“But not to worry,” he continued. “By the time we’re finished, you’ll have a new background and a plausible reason to explain your presence here. In fact, after a few weeks, you’ll begin to believe it yourself.”

He was erasing my past. My life before arriving at the embassy was quickly disappearing. The person I used to be no longer mattered. If there was such a thing as a new beginning, this was it.

ABOUT JAYE FRANCES

Jaye Frances is the author of “World Without Love,” a suspense thriller series with an erotic edge, including “Betrayed,” “Reunion,” and “Redemption.” Her other books include “The Beach,” a sci-fi supernatural tale about the possibilities—and horror—of wishful thinking, “The Kure,” a paranormal-occult romance novel, “The Possibilities of Amy,” a coming-of-age story of first love, and “Love Travels Forever,” a collection of poignant short stories. When not absorbed with her writing, she enjoys cooking, traveling, and taking pictures-lots of them. Jaye lives on the gulf coast of Florida, sharing her home with one husband, six computers, and several hundred pairs of shoes.

Website  /  Author Facebook Page  /  Series Facebook Page  /  Twitter

GIVEAWAY

Jaye Frances is offering one (1) kindle eBook of Betrayed (or another in the series if you already have Book I), gifted from Amazon or B&N. Entry is easy peasy, just answer the question:

 What do you do when it comes time to say goodbye to a series and the characters you have grown to love?

Ends 2.22.17

  • You can see my Giveaways HERE.
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  • Thanks for visiting fundinmental!

MY JAYE FRANCES REVIEWS

 World Without Love - The Complete SeriesRedemption (World Without Love, # 3)

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Giveaway – 51 Love by Jeremy T Ringfield @JTRingfield @GoddessFish

  I am happy be sharing 51 Love by Jeremy T Ringfield and have an interview for you to be able to learn more. Feel free to comment on your favorite question or answer. I am curious to see what you have to say. 🙂 

INTERVIEW

What is the sweetest thing someone has done for you?

                One day, when I was on the streets, feeling beat, a woman approached me while I sat on the sidewalk. She just walked up to me, reached out, caressed my cheek with her hand, and told me that, “It gets better.”

How would you spend ten thousand bucks?

                I would hope I could find a way to directly invest in those less fortunate than me.

Where do you get your best ideas?

                I get my best ideas when I’m not trying to think of them. I like to dream, and can find inspiration from the smallest of things.

What comes first, the plot or characters?

                The plot. Because I’m always plotting something.

What does your main character do that makes him/her special.

                Abram and Jec deliver their love notes to each other in person. I think that’s pretty special in a society that’s so use to the instantaneous communication of emails and social media profiles.

Amazon  /  Goodreads

51 Love by Jeremy T. Ringfield

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GENRE: New Adult Contemporary Romantic Suspense

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BLURB

This story is about Abram, a hopeless romantic who enrolls into college and begins leaving love notes for the girl, Jec, who works at the front desk of his student apartments. About why they know each other when neither have even met. That’s right, she had seen his face only two weeks earlier, when he tossed his book bag in the middle of the street, holding up traffic like a mad homeless man. But what she doesn’t know is that just before he came to grab his keys to move in, the handsome albeit strange eyes and the person they belong to had just been released from the county jail.

The jail cell talk without any cameras around to record make his last 51 minutes in the pen with a sketchy bunkmate a do or die conversation that may explain why he became homeless, why he wrote the love letters in the first place, and if both were random at all.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EXCERPT

Chapter 9

The same day in August, 2015

I think, for the price of a pizza, the experience of the novel is priceless.

A literary ecstasy, this was not a book I wanted to lend. I had to have it.

My co-worker interjects my thoughts, “Is that lighter fluid? What is he burning out there in our fire pit? I’m telling you Jec, that dude killed somebody. You haven’t seen him around as long as I have. The way he’s always scrunching his face, looking like a stone cold killer with all that stinking thinking. Some people struggle with who they really are. And when it goes foul, you know they don’t always catch these people.”

He picks up and holds out the book I am reading titled Wait For You, and says, “Some novels you have to read twice to really see all the beauty in the nuances, but these plots don’t always end beautifully Jec. You should start reading more of them.”

I take a bite out of an apple and stop scratching my thumb across a squiggled smear on my permanent marker to look out the window as I reply to my front desk co-receptionist, “Bobby, you’re being ridiculous. It just looked like he pulled some papers from a box and threw them into the pit. Hey, where’d he go?”

Bobby answers quickly, “No really, have you seen him using his hands on the street? He’s probably practicing some lethal judo that nobody knows right now. Hi-yah!—”

Ding-Ding.

At the sound of the front door bell I tried to smother my giggle in professionalism, but I no longer found it necessary to suppress as the blurry silhouette of the person entering the front door became clear and my laughter came to a sudden halt.

ABOUT JEREMY T RINGFIELD

Jeremy lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He grew up in the south Atlanta area, where he eventually earned a football scholarship to Duke University. After experiencing enough life to form his own opinions, he enjoys sharing some with friends, reading, watching fantasy thriller and romance films, listening to music, and jogging when he is not writing. He writes new adult fiction.

Jeremy would love to hear from you. Follow him on Twitter @JTRingfield, friend him on Facebook, or visit his webpage at www.jeremytringfield.com

 

Additional Links:  Website  /  Facebook  /  Twitter

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE

 One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour HERE.

  • You can see my Giveaways HERE.
  • You can see my Reviews HERE.
  • If you like what you see, why don’t you follow me?
  • animated smilies photo: animated animated.gifLook on the right sidebar and let’ talk.
  • Leave your link in the comments and I will drop by to see what’s shakin’.
  • Problem commenting, look for the twitter, facebook…buttons.
  • Thanks for visiting fundinmental!

Giveaway & Interview – A Fine Year For Murder by Lauren Carr @TheMysteryLadie @iReadBookTours

Lauren Carr is the bestselling author of the Mac Faraday Mysteries, the Lovers in Crime Mysteries, and the brand new series, The Thorny Rose Mysteries.  We caught up with the charming mystery writer as she preps to kick off her upcoming virtual book tour for A Fine Year for Murder, the 2th in the Mac Faraday series.

Author Interview with Lauren Carr

Lauren, thank you so much for chatting with us.  Right off the bat, I’m curious.  Is it hard to break away from your successful Mac Faraday series to work on another one?

Yes and no. Actually, I don’t consider this breaking away so much as taking a break from Mac and the gang at Deep Creek Lake. I’m not leaving Mac Faraday and the gang in Deep Creek Lake or the Lovers in Crime in their small town in West Virginia at all. I’m simply taking my readers on a detour to visit a new and different group of detectives.

As a writer, an occasional detour helps me to step away and marinate on my next Mac Faraday or Lovers in Crime Mystery—think about where I want the characters to go. Now that I am returning to the next Mac Faraday Mystery, I am actually approaching it with a fresher perspective, which adds a special treat for my readers as well.

A Fine Year for Murder, the second Thorny Rose Mystery, was released January 30.  The Thorny Rose Mystery series is a different direction for you, isn’t it? 

 Yes, it is—which makes it exciting for me as the writer and for my readers, as well. As an author, I am always striving to stretch my wings and try new things. I always listen to readers, not just talk about my books, but other authors’ books. It is not uncommon to hear a reader complain about an author’s books starting to all read the same, or for the reader to become bored with an author’s books. Well, that can also happen to the author who is writing the books. Some readers may not like the new direction I go with the Thorny Rose Mysteries. They can take comfort with Mac Faraday and the Lovers in Crime. The rest, they can dive into the mystery and suspense of Murphy and Jessica, the next generation of mystery detectives.

In the first Thorny Rose Mystery, Kill and Run, it was plain to see that the young newlywed couple, Jessica and Murphy, have a far different lifestyle than Mac and Joshua.  Can you share some of the differences we will see?   Living in Washington DC, will their stories lean toward political suspense?

Jessica and Murphy are much younger, more daring, and without a doubt more impulsive than their fathers. Also, since they are millennials, they lean toward today’s high tech lifestyle—thus, the character of Nigel, their virtual butler.

The setting alone (Washington DC) makes for a different type of criminal element. Since Murphy is a military officer assigned to the Pentagon, then we get to add a political element. As a phantom, he’s often sent on secret assignments. Then, we have Jessica Faraday, a savvy and rich young woman who knows her way around high society, which will prove to be helpful to Murphy.

Behind the scenes, readers get to see the normal adjustments that every newlywed couple must deal with—like where does the peanut butter go (fridge or cupboard) and how many children do they want to have and when.

Yet, personally, I do not want the Thorny Rose Mysteries to be a wholly political suspense mystery series. Wanting to make that clear, I set our detectives in the wine country of southern Virginia for A Fine Year for Murder.

Speaking of setting, how do you decide on the setting for a book? For instance, in choosing Washington DC or Virginia’s wine country, do you already have your story idea in mind before you settle on the location or is it character driven?

Character driven! My books are completely character driven. The decision for Washington DC for the Thorny Rose series came naturally. Murphy Thornton was a recent graduate from the Naval Academy and Jessica wanted to be with him. That meant she had to move to Washington as well. As an author, this worked well for me because I used to work in Washington as an editor for the federal government. My husband had been a navy officer assigned to the Pentagon, so I didn’t need to do that much research.

Yet, for A Fine Year for Murder, the murder case was based on a real cold case that happened in a small town. I had selected this mystery to be Jessica’s case, since Murphy took center stage in Kill and Run. Jessica had grown up in the suburbs of Washington DC, which is not a small town. So, I created the storyline in which she had become involved in the case as a child while visiting distant relatives. That resulted in my taking Jessica and Murphy on a road trip to southern Virginia.

What led to the decision to bring together the two grown children of Mac (Mac Faraday) and Joshua Thornton (Lovers in Crime)?  I love the idea, by the way.

Oh, like love, it just sort of happened. I thought long and hard about bringing the two of them together before I made the final decision. Then, it was almost a year after that before I decided found the right book launch them.

Murphy’s character came about in my first mystery book, A Small Case of Murder, a Joshua Thornton Mystery. At that time, he was seventeen years old. I knew then that he would be going to the Naval Academy. When I created the character of Jessica Faraday (readers meet her via phone conversation in Old Loves Die Hard) she was already in college in Williamsburg. When I brought back Joshua for the Lovers in Crime, I realized Murphy and Jessica were about the same age. As their fathers became friends, it became natural for them to grow close. Like my readers, I was very surprised by how quickly they grew together.

Your Mac Faraday series as well as the Lovers in Crime series have both garnered a loyal following.  I’m one of them.  We will still be seeing their series continue as well, won’t we?

 Oh yes! Each series will continue to grow on their own with interconnecting mysteries occasionally. In Kill and Run, the Lovers in Crime actively participate in the mystery. In A Fine Year for Murder, Mac Faraday and the Deep Creek Lake gang make an appearance. Then, this summer, readers are in for a treat as all of my series characters come together for two mysteries in Twofer Murder! This special mystery will be a lot of fun—I promise! As long as readers are clamoring for mysteries, I’ll be writing them.

 I, for one, love the direction you are going with this series. Characters grow and change and to keep up with the times makes them feel even more real to me.

 Thanks so much for visiting, Lauren, and I look forward to reading more of your work!

Amazon  /  Goodreads

Book Description:

After months of marital bliss, Jessica Faraday and Murphy Thornton are still discovering and adjusting to their life together. Settled in their new home, everything appears to be perfect … except in the middle of the night when, in darkest shadows of her subconscious, a deep secret from Jessica’s past creeps to the surface to make her strike out at Murphy.

When investigative journalist Dallas Walker tells the couple about her latest case, known as the Pine Bridge Massacre, they realize Jessica may have witnessed the murder of a family living near a winery owned by distant relatives she was visiting and suppressed the memory.

Determined to uncover the truth and find justice for the murder victims, Jessica and Murphy return to the scene of the crime with Dallas Walker, a spunky bull-headed Texan. Can this family reunion bring closure for a community touched by tragedy or will this prickly get-together bring an end to the Thorny Rose couple?

Buy the Book:  Amazon  ~ Add on Goodreads

ABOUT LAUREN CARR

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty titles across three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!

Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr’s seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, romance, and humor.

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real Gnarly) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with Lauren: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook

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