Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Review of FRENZY

Review of FRENZY,
A Daniel Jones Story
Written by Mark King

Reviewed by Author Roy Murry

God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” And he did this in the beginning.

In Mark King’s novel, we find a young man, Daniel, and a young woman, Gwendolyn with her elderly friend Mary, living in a state of wildly uncontrollable activity in the beginning of a new world order ruled by a god of another kind. This came about because Daniel is a wanted man by controlling despotic creatures, who govern the world with overpowering weaponry and Utopian lies – at forty years old you will be given your rewards for following our rules.

Living in a peaceful agrarian society, Daniel uncovers a secret about the Lords of the world and breaks one of their commandments. Punishment is death.

Running from those rulers, he meets the women dual who change his beliefs of what the world is, was, or should be. The adventure begins and where it ends depends on their endeavors.

A fast pace read, FRENZY, is a different kind of dystopian novel, in that the human element is fully accentuated. Humans are treated as spirits. Example: The ruler’s hunters capture and are ready to kill Daniel’s group. He and Gwendolyn overcome them; and Mary convinces them to let the hunters live because they are human, albeit misguided.

This novel is an excellent beginning of a man’s journey to freedom. The reader has an ending that entices him into Daniel’s future adventures.

Lastly, Mr. King’s imaginative immaculate prose was a pleasure to read.   

Monday, February 24, 2014

Interview of Mark King

Interview with Mark King, author of FRENZY

Questions by Author Roy Murry

CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF?
For anyone who has read my blog at www.always-hanging-around.blogspot.com you will know that I am married with two young children. I live in Thorpe St Andrew which is located on the edge of the historic city of Norwich in the county of Norfolk in the United Kingdom. I’m a lover of life with all the enjoyment it can bring. I’m a full time writer with my energy spent writing my new manuscript I have initial entitled Daniel Jones DOOM which is the sequel to FRENZY a Daniel Jones story; plus my world-wide-blog and articles for some magazines. I like to travel and have visited many different countries around the world; my next stop is in Tunisia, and I hope one day soon to return again to the great U.S.A.

DO YOU REMENBER THE FIRST STORY YOU WROTE?
I use to have to write stories at school, but I can’t remember any of them. I sometimes find stuffed in some box in the attic various hand written pieces of paper where I have started on a story, but never got past the first page or two. The first story I do remember is one I still have the early chapters to, and one day in the future I might even get around to finishing it. It’s based on a small, but true, event that happened during the second world. The plot is about what would have happened if this event never took place, and what the consequences would have been.

WERE YOU INSPIRED BY SOMEONE OR SOMETHING?
I was inspired to complete FRENZY a Daniel Jones story after the sudden death of father-in-law. At the time I was in paid full time employment, and always thought I would write a book once I had retired, but the whole horrible event taught me that you must do what you want to do now; because you never know what is around the corner, and we only get one chance on this wonderful planet. So I resigned from the company and gave myself a target of two years to get FRENZY published which I achieved on the very last month. I was also inspired by someone else and there is a dedication in the front of my book that gives a clue to his identity.

WHAT DO YOU LIKE ABOUT WRITING A STORY?
What I most like about writing a story is getting lost in the plot. By letting you thoughts take over so time stands still why you live out another life. You can be whoever you want to be, and in any situation, with the hope that the picture you paint with words will also bring enjoyment to your fellow human beings.

CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT YOUR BOOK?
Frenzy a Daniel Jones story is about a young man who discovers a terrible secret about the rulers of humanity that tears his secure and loving life apart.  The Over-seers know he knows the truth, and thus he has no choice but to go on the run to save not only his own life, but also to protect his family.  Near to death his life is saved by Gwendolyn a girl from a very different background. With the help of Mary an older lady who becomes the mother figure of the group as the threesome go on a quest to find the one thing that can protect them in the new world order. It’s a fast paced dystopian novel that leads you though a vivid landscape of excitement, danger and friendship as the three heroes’ are chased by Hunters who do the Over-seer’s dirty work.

ARE YOU WRITING ON SOMETHING NEW AT THE MOMENT?
I am writing Daniel Jones DOOM the sequel to Frenzy. It will be in the same writing style and I’m presently halfway through the manuscript. New characters are introduced while one may be killed off! Once again it will be written so that anyone of any age, or sex, will enjoy reading it just like with FRENZY a Daniel Jones story. So it doesn’t matter if you are a teenager or retiree, or any age in-between, male or female, you should like the Daniel Jones series.

DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR ASPIRING WRITER’S?
There are two tips I will freely give. The first is to expect constant rejection. From the first time you give your first ever draft of your beloved manuscript to a friend to read expecting them to come back to you a week later saying it is the best story they have ever read; only for it to sit on their coffee table for two months because they got lost, or bored, after the first four chapters. Then trying to find a publisher, or agent, and once you are in print trying to get publicity, or reviews. If you can’t take rejection then don’t start. The second tip I give is to never to give up. If you have faith enough in your story especially like me where I gave up a secure well paid job to follow my dream then you will find a way through every rejection.

WHERE CAN PEOPLE GO TO READ YOUR WORK?
Frenzy a Daniel Jones story is available in most countries around the world in either hardback or digitally on Kindle, Nook and iStore although presently only written in English it will soon be translated into Turkish. It is available to read in libraries from the U.K to New Zealand, but people can get some taster chapters via Amazon and other sites on these links.

Amazon U.S.A http://amzn.to/HpNeFF
Amazon Canada http://amzn.to/1aHssy9
Barnes + Noble http://bit.ly/1bSInGm
World-wide at Book depository http://bit.ly/1dgl5M4
Asia/Australia http://bit.ly/1jqN8hZ

FRENZY a Daniel Jones story is also available on many other different web-site for sale, or review, and though other formats for iPad and mobiles. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Review of STEPS TO HEAVEN

Review of Wendy Cartmell’s
STEPS TO HEAVEN

Reviewed by Author Roy Murry


Ms. Carmell’s writing kept me involved with the events of the first in her series: A Sgt. Major Crane novel. It would seem to some that the novel was a military war story, but it isn’t.  

This novel is an after the war entanglement where a military police detective, Crane, has to unravel a deadly problem - the physiological effects of soldiers returning from war in a state of vulnerability. ‘Not a whodunit, but a why did they do it,’ is the premise of Crane’s investigation.

When one soldier murders in an unorthodox way, Crane wants to follow after the why, but his Commanding Officer delays the investigation. It happens again and then another time at other military posts. Crane is now given the go ahead to find out the reason why a veteran could do what he did to another family member.

This is a detective story with a military background and red tape influences of both the military and civilian authorizes. Sgt. Major Crane, a hard nose senior investigator, wants to get the religious manipulator who he thinks provoked the crimes against veterans; and dam the rules that are slowing up his investigation. His mindset, not others, rules the day in the end at a high cost.

Ms. Cartwell’s novel is a plausible contemporary murder entanglement that detective lovers will enjoy. Her characters come across as humans not super intelligent spoofs. They have lives interwoven into the story that military police officers have to contend with. This novel has a thrilling ending to boot.

Wendy’s interview is below: http://bit.ly/1bFrynH
  


                 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Interview with Wendy Cartmell

Interview with Wendy Carmell,
Author of STEPS TO HEAVEN

Questions: R. Murry

Can you tell me a little about yourself?
I’m an expat Brit who lives on the Costa del Sol in Spain. I live with my husband and two dogs near the beach. I've a BA Hons degree in English and Education and have worked in PR, communications and edited a large corporate newspaper. I’m very lucky to have a writing group nearby which I’ve been attending for four years now.

Do you remember the first story you wrote?
It was a Halloween witch story for my children. The Brownies needed a storyteller for the Halloween Night meeting, so I made up a story where a young witch needed items for a spell. I collected all the things she needed and the children got to put their hands on the ingredients. This later became the Wilhelmina the Witch story I self published.

Were you inspired by someone or something?
I started off, like a lot of writers, by writing what I wanted to read. And that was crime novels. Using the old adage of 'write what you know' Sgt Major Crane was born out of my husband's 22 year's service in the British Army. We set the books in Aldershot - The Home of the British Army. I am very humbled that the Crane novels are now being enjoyed all over the world, sometimes to critical acclaim.

What do you like about writing a story?
Being transported into Crane’s world. It’s like watching a tv programme in my head and I write down what I see.

Can you tell us about your book? 
Steps to Heaven: Sergeant Major Crane is a Special Investigations Branch Detective in the British Army, he is the soldier who polices other soldiers. He thinks he has seen every crime known to both war and peace. But nothing has prepared him for the case of Solomon. An Afghanistan veteran he has murdered his wife and six year old son and then committed suicide. Soon there are similar horrific murders around the country. Crane knows there must be a connection. But what? Crane starts to investigate the local Church Solomon was attending. But with the body count rising, events start to take a darker turn … could the Church be the connection? Is the Church offering salvation? Or is it forcing people to take the first, untimely Steps to Heaven?

What genre best fits for the book?
They’ve been called thrillers, mysteries set in the military and they also read like police procedurals – so take your pick really.

Are you working on something new at the moment?
A new series based on another character from the Crane novels. This time they’re more action/adventure and I hope to write books in this series and the Crane series.

Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
Read a lot, write a lot and read a good writing book. Stephen King’s On Writing is excellent.

Where can people go to read your work?
At the moment the ebooks are only on Amazon. The paperbacks can be ordered through Amazon or your local bookstore.

Do you have anything to add?

I’ve just been published by Endeavour Press, the UK’s leading publisher of digital books, so I’m really excited about that. There are five books so far in the Crane series and the first two books Steps to Heaven and 40 Days 40 Nights have now been published by Endeavour. At the moment we’re bringing out a book a month.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Review of The Unknown (Flawed Series)

Review of The Unknown
(Flawed Series)
Written by Lara Henley

Reviewed by Author Roy Murry

Misty and Drake, the main characters in The Unknown, individually tell the reader about their love story. There is nothing unusual about this other than the fact that ‘It’s love at first sight’ in the middle of nowhere going into the direction – disaster.

It is difficult to convey a love story in novel form, because many have tried, including “Love Story.” Ms. Henley attempt gets ‘A Thumbs up’ for its dialogue of the characters who express their emotions and life’s development, leading to a heart breaking ending.

At times you will have a tear in your eyes and at other moments you’ll be asking yourself ‘What are they doing?’ As they say, ‘Kids will be kids,’ and so will young people in what they call love.

Emotions are brought to a level of passion and delusion that few reach and become problematic in the beginning of Misty and Drake’s stories. The ending culminates into unforeseen events that will endear the reader to them, asking what comes next.

Lara Henley’s novel does have a euphoric tone that reaches ecstasy in her character’s dialogue, having the reader expecting a disaster at any moment. The surprise will not be when it comes, but how it happens. This is what makes this novel special.


It’s an easy read using modern technology’s ‘Text messaging’ and cell phones as emotional tools.  Ms. Henley has written an in depth novel for young adults.  Check out her current endeavors of romance.   

Ms. Henley's links: 
Website: https://www.larahenley.com

Monday, February 3, 2014

Review of Deadly Attraction

Review of Neil Low’s
DEADLY ATTRACTION

Reviewed by Author Roy Murry

When it comes to a good moving detective story, I look for a fast moving adventure into the lives of the ones doing the detecting and the mysteries they are trying to unravel. Neil Low makes that endeavor entertaining, expounding on all the emotions.

His story is simple: women found dead and someone did it but whom? This is where the fun begins. The fun is not the deadly act but in this case - the attractions. It’s in the DEADLY ATTACTION of a man against women and the attractions of the two detectives unraveling the details of why the woman is dead.

Because of the woman’s attraction to a man with a questionable background, she meets her maker at an early age. Mr. Low’s Vera and Alan detective couple’s attraction to each other becomes a deadly factor towards the thrilling end of this whodunit.

Seattle is Mr. Low’s home where he works as a police officer and is the reason for that city being the background of the novel. I’ve found that’s good to write about what you know. He knows Seattle and from what I read in his novels he is a fine detective.

Using simple prose, Neil has his characters Vera and Alan giving each other humorous loving jabs. With the help of police detective Ben, they go about solving two cases that clash at the end into one, on a tugboat no doubt.

If you like a good moving fun filled thriller, DEADLY ATTRACTION should be on your Book to read list.    

Purchase: http://amzn.to/1IuRti3


Interview with Neil Low

Interview of Neil Low, 
Author of Deadly Attraction

Interviewed by Roy Murry

Can you tell me a little about yourself?
I’m a career police officer, having joined the Seattle Police Department forty-five years ago. I’ve risen through the ranks, starting as a teen-aged cadet, making captain twelve years ago. I still love police work, figure that I’m contributing to society, and I enjoy serving as the Night Commander, which means I’m in charge of all police emergency services when the chief is in bed—like the battalion chief at a fire department. I’ve been interested in writing since first reading Joe Wambaugh’s New Centurions, when I returned from Naval Service in Vietnam. After reading Wambaugh’s stories, I vowed I would write someday, but first I had to go out and gain police experience, developing my own stories, as well as learn how to write them in an entertaining fashion. I did just that. After several years on the street, I went back to college and graduated cum laude from the University of Washington Bothell, 2003.

Do you remember the first story you wrote?
While in Vietnam I lost my lucky hat. Knocked off my head, it fell overboard, and I watched it sink slowly into the muddy water of the Mekong Delta. I dramatized the telling of this non-event to my mother, implying that it was a best friend who had died at sea. She was completely taken-in by the story and didn’t find out until the very end of the letter that it was just my blue cap that was missing. She scolded me for teasing her, and told me that I had writing talent worth pursuing.

Were you inspired by someone or something?
When I first read Joe Wambaugh’s New Centurions and The Blue Knight, I was impressed to find an author who understood police officers and could tell our story, something people wanted to hear if told well. Joe was an active L.A. police sergeant at that time, with a Masters degree in English. I had read detective novels before this, but I think Wambaugh was the first to capture what real police officers dealt with on the street. It was much grittier than Adam 12 or Dragnet had ever been. Later, when I went back to college, a professor encouraged me to write a paper on Raymond Chandler and his crime fiction novels, and that was the spark that changed my whole perspective on what and how I wanted to write. I had been a police detective for several years by then, and I was extremely impressed with Chandler’s style and his craftsmanship in telling stories. I decided to emulate him while telling my own. He continues to be my inspiration. I think I’ve read everything he’s ever written.

What do you like about writing a story?
I enjoy the storytelling process. I write organically, meaning I don’t use an outline; I let my characters tell me their story. But as I say this, I know that I have a built-in boiler plate, knowing what is necessary for a criminal case to go to trial. For a novel to be complete enough for publication, it has to meet the same standards as a case for prosecution. All the leads must be followed, and the facts have to logically point to a satisfactory conclusion.  I love sitting down at the computer with the hint of an idea and then typing out what I’ve learned by paying attention to my characters interacting with each other. BUT—this is only part of the fun. I have since learned that there is pleasure to be had in the rewrite, while polishing the novel, if you take pride in craftsmanship. I appreciate the creation of a well-turned phrase, and I love injecting foreshadowing and alliterations, as well as metaphors and similes, wishing I could write them as well as my writing idol. I love the feedback I get when a fan tells me how much he liked my stories, and then he quotes a passage back to me that resonated with him—makes me feel like Raymond Chandler. This is probably a good point to mention that I have an art background and am a very visual person. I write hoping that my readers will see what I see, appreciating the detail that makes a story feel real to both of us.

Can you tell us about your book?
DEADLY ATTRACTION is based on two true crimes and other factual history that I discovered combing through old and cold cases, while I was the Homicide Commander for the Seattle Police Department. The primary murder involves the discovery of an attractive, young woman's body near the Green Lake walking path. Audrey Lockhart is a recent college graduate from an East Coast school and was in Seattle to visit her dying father, whom she hadn't seen in years, while on her way to Hollywood. Since the case involves a potential conflict of interest for Seattle detectives who have crossed swords with Lockhart's uncle, the King County Commissioner, private detectives Alan Stewart and Vera Deward are called in once again to help the police, something that wasn't all that uncommon back in the 1920s and 30s. Alan and Vera's skills shine as they discover clues and links to other crimes, while working with stalwart police detective, Ben Kearney, who is based on a real policeman I had the pleasure of working with during my early days in Seattle. Chasing the suspect(s) involves door to door searches in Shanty Town, as well as fist fights in Skid Row bars, gun play, and knife fights along the Seattle Harbor and waterfront.

Packed with local Seattle settings and true history, Deadly Attraction, was written to grab the reader’s attention and not let go.

How did you come up with the story?
While working on a famous Seattle story involving a vault burglary, I started crafting the back story on the main characters, which took me away from the outline I was drafting. While fleshing in Alan Stewart, I added information a friend had shared concerning the death of his dad in the 40s, dying from a beating at a union meeting. When I asked if the police had caught whoever killed his father, he said, “I think it was the police who killed him.” Since we were both police sergeants at this time on the same department, I asked how that could be, and he replied, “It was a different era back then. The department had corruption then like we’ve never seen in our careers!” Before long, Alan’s back story stretched to eight chapters, and of course it begged the questions: Who killed Mackie Stewart and why? So I followed my instincts and went with the story, letting my characters explain what happened to them. I felt like a scribe recording the story told by ghosts.

What genre best fits for the book?
I write noir murder/mystery.

Are you working on something new at the moment?
THICK AS THIEVES led to a sequel, SIGN OF THE DRAGON, and I’ve followed that with UNREASONABLE PERSUASION, UNHOLY ALLIANCE, DEADLY ATTRACTION, and my sixth, THEATER OF THE CRIME, which is due for release mid-March, 2014. All have been published by Kristen Morris of Tigress Publishing (Seattle and L.A.) who has been an absolute joy to work with. She’s been very active in the book designs, promotions, editing, and concept development.

Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
Learn as much as you can about writing. Read Stephens King’s On Writing, Robert McKee’s Story, and everything else you can find on your craft. I started reading Writer’s Digest, and now read various blogs on writing. And as Ray Bradbury has said, I urge would-be writers to start writing and make it a habit. Bradbury suggests starting with short-stories, completing one a week, which is what he did, and it’s also how Stephen King honed his skills. I also took every college class I could find on writing or literature, because it is all about learning your craft. I’ll also reiterate what other authors have said: If you want to write, you need to read. Read everything you can and expand your taste in reading. Educate yourself.

Purchase at http://
amzn.to/1kgbqGR