Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Van Shaw Thrillers

Past Crimes

Past Crimes by Glen Erik Hamilton

This novel is the first in the Van Shaw Thriller series. Take a deep breath when you open the cover, because you’ll find yourself deep in action right from start to end. Van is now an Army Ranger serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was raised in Seattle by his grandfather. Now ten years estranged, his grandfather has asked him to come home.

Van’s welcome home is extraordinary. He finds his grandfather bleeding out on the floor from a gunshot wound to his head. And now Van is suddenly in the midst of break-ins, thefts, attempted murder, then he’s suspected and chased by police, and threatened by others. The chase and Van’s investigation is on, and one of the best parts of being a reader along for this wild ride is that this novel is all written from Van’s perspective, giving you a front row seat in real time. You’ll feel your heart pound as you walk down the dark alley with Van, trying to sneak past the bad guys knowing you have nothing but your wits for defense against their weapons. And that’s just one of the chills he shares with you.

His grandfather is not your typical relative; at least I don’t think so. He had some interesting friends and followed some questionable pursuits. Putting together the clues to find out what’s happened and who’s behind it is mesmerizing and suspenseful.

Skillfully laced throughout the novel are some of Van’s memories of his unusual youth growing up in Seattle. Some memories include his friends and some are with his grandfather, and it’s a wonderful way to entertain while giving the reader valuable insights into Van’s personality.

This award winning, best-selling author knows a lot about the Seattle area. He grew up aboard a sailboat in the Seattle area, and spent much time around the islands of the Pacific Northwest. He now lives in Burbank, California with his family but left his heart in Seattle and visits frequently.

You’ll be intrigued to find how past crimes can sneak up on you, and influence your present. They can even be part of a chance at a future. I can’t wait to pick up the sequel Hard Cold Winter available in paperback in May, and I’m looking forward to the newest in the series Every Day Above Ground available July 25th.

And hear more from the author by clicking on the episode when Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Glen Erik Hamilton, including more information about his new book Every Day Above Ground - 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

That's a Close Call with Laura DiSilverio

Close Call and The Reckoning Stones
By Laura DiSilverio

                I’ve discovered a delightful mystery author who has authored a wide range of books in this broad genre.  Many of you may know this author from her enticing cozy mystery series:  The Readaholics series, Mall Cop series, Ballroom Dance mysteries, or Southern Beauty Shop mysteries.  Talented Laura DiSilverio also writes mysteries and suspense that will grip you with their heartwarming, emotional depths and also chill you with their tense excitement.
                In Close Call an incidental twist of fate throws the unwitting protagonist Sydney Ellison straight into the middle of an assassination plot.  Sydney has to analyze why suddenly extraordinary events are happening around her, what is causing it, and then solve the mystery of who is behind it all before she’s the next victim.  The reader is treated to a taut race analyzing clues on how the bad guy can be stopped in time.  The twists are deftly executed by the author, and enjoyed by this reader.
                The Reckoning Stones is a very suspenseful telling of a story about solving a cold case.  It’s fascinating to read how a gruesome crime many years ago can have such immense impacts on such a number of lives later.  Especially when the person accused, convicted, and in jail is actually innocent.  For me, much of this novel is about examining loyalties well placed, and also loyalties misplaced or broken.  Betrayal is a powerful motive, among other motives.  The justice system already has someone held accountable for the crime, so they’re not assigning resources again on a whim.  It’s another compelling and resourceful protagonist, Iris, who in this case is driven to free this innocent man.  By the way, that’s her assumed name.  Why does she have an assumed name?  You’ll want to read to find out.

                National bestselling and award-winning author Laura DiSilverio is an exciting author.  She served twenty years as an Air Force Intelligence Officer before becoming a full time writer.  Her energy and enthusiasm for life is fully present in her books.  I hope you’ll give them a try.  And to learn more about her writing first hand, enjoy our podcast Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries withLaura DiSilverio.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

My Sister's Grave Legal Thriller

My Sister’s Grave
By Robert Dugoni

Her beloved sister disappeared without a trace 20 years ago. The grief was life altering for the loving family and friends left behind. Tracy Crosswhite has spent all this time questioning her sister’s disappearance, and also the facts in the trial that followed. Two decades later remains are found by hunters in the woods, and identified as her sister Sarah. Now homicide detective with the Seattle police department, Tracy sees opportunities to reopen the investigation into her sister’s murder. What she doesn’t realize is that those actions will lead to intense danger for herself and others.

This story grabs the reader in so many ways, emotionally, as a thriller, and as a courtroom curiosity. Robert Dugoni is a bestselling author including this Tracy Crosswhite series, the David Sloane mystery series, and also stand alone books. He’s recently been nominated for the Edgar Award for Best Paperback Original for The 7th Canon. His books, including My Sister’s Grave are very well researched in all aspects. The characters are especially memorable and true to life, skillfully described in the course of the story through observation, and also through comments and reactions of other characters in the book. During parts of the legal court scenes you’ll almost be holding your breath with anticipation. And the underlying danger that seeps into every scene will thrill and chill you.

Part 1 of this book begins with a quote from Sir William Blackstone, Commentaries on the Laws of England: “Better that ten guilty persons escape than that one innocent suffer.” How does this important premise play a part in the interesting plot for this book? Here’s an opportunity to explore your feelings about the legal system from several different and important perspectives.

This book also led me to ponder why readers like me are so attracted to murder mysteries. It’s not the incredible cruelty, violence, and struggle for that final breath. Reading this book I became so engaged by the characters, almost as a reflection of people in my own life. This story became a reminder that it can all be taken away in an instant: the caring relationship, the love, the joy, the person. The mystery novel reminds us to fully live and love every moment while it’s here.

For more direct from the author, please click on the link to the Kendall & Cooper Podners in Crime Podcast.

And look for the author's newest book The Trapped Girl

Sunday, January 29, 2017

K&C Talk Legal Mysteries with Keenan Powell

Join the Podners as Kendall & Cooper talk Legal Mysteries with Keenan Powell, Author and Attorney from Anchorage, Alaska. Even Jack Nicholson and Tom Cruise from A Few Good Men weigh in on the discussion.  Also book recommendations, the thin line between fiction and real life, and more

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Shakespeare's Rebel, Well Met

Shakespeare's Rebel
By C. C. Humphreys

Has it been awhile since your last swashbuckling adventure?  Then avast ye readers and you’ll be forewarned.  I’m telling you about a fun, fast paced, sword wielding tale of a daredevil rogue on a thrilling, romantic adventure.  The story is set in 16th century England, during Shakespearean times, without the Shakespearean language, and overseen by the Sovereign Queen Elizabeth.

                It seems like fate has it in for our unwilling hero, John Lawley.  Or could it be one of his three weaknesses: whiskey, women, or his friend Mad Robbie Devereux that lures John into so much trouble and danger?  But he’s someone who can give danger a run for the money.  John is England’s finest swordsman and fight choreographer at the new Globe Theater.  Yes, that’s how he knows William Shakespeare, who is struggling to finish his play The Tragedy of Hamlet, an endeavor that could destroy him.

                Danger is around the corner.  The Queen has some dirty work that needs to be done and she’s sure that John Lawley is the man for it.  John wants to win back his spirited and beloved Tess, and also guide his impressionable son Ned, but the Queen has other priorities.  After all, there’s a bit of a mystery to be solved, and resolved.

                The author, Chris Humphreys brings this historical, revolutionary time vividly to life.  He utilizes his background as an actor, playwright, and in fight choreography to attain a realism in his novel.  As you read the sword fights, you’ll have a description that conjures a picture of the characters’ struggle beyond words.  Acting runs in his family, and like his four grandparents and his father, Chris Humphreys is an actor.  He has appeared in plays all over the world.  I think his acting background has uncovered in him a gift for creating memorable and deep characters.

The hero struggles to make good in his complicated relationships with his associates, his Queen, his friends, his son, and his beloved.  Obstacles he encounters are as hard fought as the combat at the point of his sword.  And the reader gets to listen in on John Lawley’s reflections on life’s relationships with the Bard, who’s battling ghosts of his own.  His struggles are much like those of his audience.  “They needed release.  And so the skillful playwright gave it to them.  Gave them a fight.”

                Thereby hangs a tale . . . .

Friday, December 23, 2016

K&C Talk Mysteries with Author Leslie Budewitz

Author Leslie Budewitz and the Podners talk about why mysteries are so appealing, Leslie's cozy series and other books, Sisters in Crime, book recommendations, and an online surprise

On You Tube

On iTunes