Saturday, May 31, 2014

A Question of Honor by Charles Todd is Today's Kindle Daily Deal

Kindle Daily Deal

MystereBooks is pleased to feature A Question of Honor by Charles Todd as today's Kindle Daily Deal.

The deal price of $1.99 is valid only for today, Saturday, May 31, 2014.

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A Question of Honor by Charles Todd

A Question of Honor
Charles Todd
A Bess Crawford Mystery
William Morrow

Bess Crawford enjoyed a wondrous childhood in India, where her father, a colonel in the British Army, was stationed on the Northwest Frontier. But an unforgettable incident darkened that happy time. In 1908, Colonel Crawford's regiment discovered that it had a murderer in its ranks, an officer who killed five people in India and England yet was never brought to trial. In the eyes of many of these soldiers, men defined by honor and duty, the crime was a stain on the regiment's reputation and on the good name of Bess's father, the Colonel Sahib, who had trained the killer.

A decade later, tending to the wounded on the battlefields of France during World War I, Bess learns from a dying Indian sergeant that the supposed murderer, Lieutenant Wade, is alive — and serving at the Front. Bess cannot believe the shocking news. According to reliable reports, Wade's body had been seen deep in the Khyber Pass, where he had died trying to reach Afghanistan. Soon, though, her mind is racing. How had he escaped from India? What had driven a good man to murder in cold blood?

Wanting answers, she uses her leave to investigate. In the village where the first three killings took place, she discovers that the locals are certain that the British soldier was innocent. Yet the present owner of the house where the crime was committed believes otherwise, and is convinced that Bess's father helped Wade flee. To settle the matter once and for all, Bess sets out to find Wade and let the courts decide.

But when she stumbles on the horrific truth, something that even the famous writer Rudyard Kipling had kept secret all his life, she is shaken to her very core. The facts will damn Wade even as they reveal a brutal reality, a reality that could have been her own fate.

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Important Note: This book was listed at the price mentioned above on the date and time of this post. Prices can and do change without prior notice. Please confirm the price of the book before completing your purchase.

Today's Mystery and Suspense Update from Big Fish Games (140531)

Big Fish Games

Here is today's mystery and suspense update from Big Fish Games …

• The New Release is Royal Detective: Queen of Shadows.

• The Daily Deal is Shiver: Moonlit Grove, just $2.99 today only!

• The current Catch of the Week is Weird Park: Scary Tales, just $2.99 through Sunday, June 01, 2014 only.

• Today's Special Deal — All Games 50% Off! Use coupon code SAVE to get any Collector's Edition game for just $9.99; use coupon code HALF to get any Standard game for just $4.99. Offer valid through Sunday, June 1st only until 11:59 PM PT.

Visit the Omnimystery Entertainment Network for more games of mystery and suspense!

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Royal Detective: Queen of Shadows

The New Release today is Royal Detective: Queen of Shadows

Princess made some mistakes in the past, not always using her magic for good. But she's made amends, and that's all forgiven now. She has finally found her mother after five long years. But just as Princess runs to embrace her, a band of thuggish trees kidnap her mother! You're the royal detective she came to know so well, and you're Princess' only hope. She's still just a girl, and her magic isn't quite strong enough to defeat the villain who's taken her mother. Help reunite them — and uncover a devious plot by an evil king and his brothers!

A sample version is available to download and play for free for one hour.

Also available for this game:

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Shiver: Moonlit Grove

Today's Daily Deal is Shiver: Moonlit Grove

You owe everything to Rene Malot, the man who found you as a child and raised you as his own. So when he goes missing, you're elected by the district to take his place, following in his footsteps as a doctor. On the way to your new job, a wolf attacks your carriage, forcing you to flee for shelter in a nearby village. Something here is very wrong, but the villagers aren't talking. As you discover their secrets, you might discover something about the foster father whom you've loved so dearly. You'll need all of your wits to survive the long night in this chilling Hidden Object Puzzle Adventure game.

A sample version is available to download and play for free for one hour. You can purchase this game today only — Saturday, May 31, 2014 — for $2.99.

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Weird Park: Scary Tales

The current Catch of the Week is Weird Park: Scary Tales

Louis the Clown and Mr. Dudley are back in an all-new adventure that will take you through the dark corners of history's most famous fairytales to rescue children trapped in a frightening netherworld! Louis is up to his old tricks as he casts each child in the role of a legendary fairytale character and then creates the visually stunning but twialay out. Use your skills and intellect to find hidden objects and solve puzzles as you make your way through the stories of Cinderella, Peter Pan, Aladdin and more!

A sample version is available to download and play for free for one hour. You can purchase this game at the special price of $2.99 through Sunday, June 01, 2014.

Also available for this game:

Friday, May 30, 2014

Minotaur Mysteries: Southern Peril, A Jersey Barnes Mystery by T. Lynn Ocean

Minotaur Books

Minotaur Books, an imprint of Macmillan and a leading publisher of mystery and suspense books, currently has over 200 books available for $4.99 or less.

Today, we are pleased to feature one of these titles, Southern Peril by T. Lynn Ocean, now just $1.99. (Price verified on May 30, 2014 as of 5:00 PM ET.)

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Southern Peril by T. Lynn Ocean

Southern Peril by T. Lynn Ocean
A Jersey Barnes Mystery (3rd in series)
Publisher: Minotaur Books

Why is it so hard for Jersey Barnes to retire?

When a state supreme judge calls in a favor, she tells herself (again) that this is her last case. She must investigate the judge's brother, Morgan, and his newly-inherited business. When Jersey realizes the DEA is checking on Morgan, too, she finds herself in the middle of a twenty-year-old mystery and a drug ring investigation.

Still checking up on her geriatric father and his trouble-making friends, negotiating the steamy friendship/relationship with her bartender Ox, and dodging the flirtacious sparks flying back and forth with the cute DEA agent, Jersey begins to wonder if retirement is ever in her future.

Amazon Kindle Book

A New MystereBook: Death is Not an Option by Mike McManus

New MystereBooks (Mystery eBooks)

Here is a mystery, suspense, or thriller ebook that we recently found by sleuthing (as it were) through new or recently reissued titles from independent publishers during May 2014 priced $4.99 or less …

Death is Not an Option by Mike McManus is new in the Amazon Kindle Store, though was first published in ebook format in October 2013. It isn't listed as the first in a series, but it clearly could be.

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Death is Not an Option by Mike McManus

Death is Not an Option by Mike McManus
A Mystery Novel
Publisher: California Times Publishing
Publication Date: May 28, 2014
Price: $0.99 (as of 05/30/14 4:30 PM ET)

Clayton Trace is the head pro at an upscale mountain country club. Most people would look at his lifestyle and say that he has it all. His thirty-something girl companion is tall, pretty and appears to not care about the other women in his life. He drives a great car, lives steps away from a championship golf course and is respected and admired by the members of the country club and the citizens of the small community called Mountain Greens. Unfortunately, he also has a target on his back.

Somewhere in his past he made a mistake and ticked the wrong person off. That person now wants him dead and will go to any length to see that happen.

Amazon Kindle Book

Important Note: This book was listed for the price indicated on the date and time as shown. Prices can and do change without prior notice. Please confirm the price of the book before completing your purchase.

Minotaur Mysteries: Death of an Artist, A Novel of Suspense by Kate Wilhelm

Minotaur Books

Minotaur Books, an imprint of Macmillan and a leading publisher of mystery and suspense books, currently has over 200 books available for $4.99 or less.

Today, we are pleased to feature one of these titles, Death of an Artist by Kate Wilhelm, now just $1.99. (Price verified on May 30, 2014 as of 4:00 PM ET.)

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Death of an Artist by Kate Wilhelm

Death of an Artist by Kate Wilhelm
A Novel of Suspense
Publisher: Minotaur Books

Read our review of Death of an Artist by Kate Wilhelm

Silver Bay, Oregon, a small coastal resort town with nearly a thousand residents, is home to three generations of women: Marnie, the long-widowed owner of a small gift shop; Van, her granddaughter who is about to graduate medical school; and Stef, mercurial, difficult, and a brilliant artist who refuses to sell her work.

When Stef discovers that Dale Oliver — the latest husband/paramour in a very long line — is trying to sell her work behind her back, she puts a stop to it and threatens to do the same to him. Shortly thereafter, Stef dies in an accident in her studio, and Dale shows up with a signed contract granting him the right to sell her work.

Convinced that Stef was murdered in order to steal her artwork, Marie and Van — grandmother and granddaughter — decide to do whatever is necessary to see that Dale doesn't get away with any of it. This includes enlisting the help of the new stranger in town, Tony, a former New York City cop, who might be the only one who can prove it was murder and bring the killer to justice.

Amazon Kindle Book

The Calling of the Grave, A David Hunter Mystery by Simon Beckett, Now at a Special Price

The Calling of the Grave by Simon Beckett

MystereBooks is pleased to feature The Calling of the Grave by Simon Beckett, now available at a special price, courtesy of the publisher, Transworld Digital.

The ebook format of this title was priced at $1.99 from the listed vendors (below) as of the date and time of this post (05/30/2014 at 3:30 PM ET). Prices are subject to change without notice. The price displayed on the vendor website at the time of purchase will be the price paid for the book. Please confirm the price of the book before completing your transaction.

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The Calling of the Grave by Simon Beckett

The Calling of the Grave by Simon Beckett
A David Hunter Mystery (4th in series)
Publisher: Transworld Digital

Nothing stays hidden forever …

When DI Terry Connor turns up on David Hunter's doorstep, it's an unwelcome reminder of the past in more ways than one. The two used to be friends before Connor's behaviour caused a bitter rift. And the news the policeman brings is even less welcome: the psychotic rapist and murderer Jerome Monk has escaped from high security prison.

Monk's is a name all too familiar to Hunter. Eight years before he'd part of an ill-fated Body Recovery team assembled to try and find the graves of Monk's teenage victims on the bleak expanse of Dartmoor. Only one of the missing girls' bodies was ever found, and Monk's own controversial involvement in the search led to more failure and a violent denouement. And now Monk is on the loose - and seems to be targeting anyone involved with the original search.

Then Hunter receives a mysterious appeal for help from Sophie Keller, a young woman who also worked on the operation, he suddenly finds that the past is far from dead and buried. Neither the events unfolding now, nor those from all those years ago, are quite as they seem. And as the maniac's bloody trail edges ever closer, Hunter is forced to question who he can really trust. Especially when his own life depends on it …

Amazon Kindle Book

Important Note: This book was listed at the above mentioned price on the date and time of this post. Prices can and do change without prior notice. Please confirm the price of the book before completing your purchase.

Minotaur Mysteries: The Attenbury Emeralds, A Lord Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane Mystery by Jill Paton Walsh

Minotaur Books

Minotaur Books, an imprint of Macmillan and a leading publisher of mystery and suspense books, currently has over 200 books available for $4.99 or less.

Today, we are pleased to feature one of these titles, The Attenbury Emeralds by Jill Paton Walsh, now just $2.99. (Price verified on May 30, 2014 as of 3:00 PM ET.)

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The Attenbury Emeralds by Jill Paton Walsh

The Attenbury Emeralds by Jill Paton Walsh
A Lord Peter Wimsey/Harriet Vane Mystery (3rd in series)
Publisher: Minotaur Books

It was 1921 when Lord Peter Wimsey first encountered the Attenbury Emeralds. The recovery of the gems in Lord Attenbury's dazzling heirloom collection made headlines — and launched a shell-shocked young aristocrat on his career as a detective.

Thirty years later, a happily married Lord Peter has just shared the secrets of that mystery with his wife, the detective novelist Harriet Vane. Suddenly, the new Lord Attenbury — grandson of Lord Peter's first client — seeks his help to prove who owns the emeralds.

As Harriet and Peter contemplate the changes that the war has wrought on English society — and Peter, who always cherished the liberties of a younger son, faces the unwanted prospect of ending up the Duke of Denver after all.

Amazon Kindle Book

Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell, New in Bookstores in May 2014

New Mysteries (

Today's new hardcover mystery title, scheduled to be published during May 2014 by Kensington, is Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell.

For a list of more new hardcover mysteries published this month, visit our New Mysteries page for May 2014. For new paperback mysteries, visit The Mystery Bookshelf where a selection of May 2014 mysteries, novels of suspense, and thrillers are shelved.

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Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell

Til Dirt Do Us Part
Edith Maxwell
Series: Cameron Flaherty, Local Foods (2nd)

The produce is local — and so is the crime — when long-simmering tensions lead to murder following a festive dinner on Cam Flaherty's farm. It'll take a sleuth who knows the lay of the land to catch this killer. But no one ever said Cam wasn't willing to get her hands dirty.

Autumn has descended on Westbury, Massachusetts, but the mood at the Farm-to-Table Dinner in Cam's newly built barn is unseasonably chilly. Local entrepreneur Irene Burr made a lot of enemies with her plan to buy Westbury's Old Town Hall and replace it with a textile museum — enough enemies to fill out a list of suspects when the wealthy widow turns up dead in a neighboring farm.

Even an amateur detective like Cam can figure out that one of the resident locavores went loco — at least temporarily — and settled a score with Irene. But which one? With the Fall harvest upon her, Cam must sift through a bushelful of possible killers that includes Irene's estranged stepson, her disgruntled auto mechanic, and a fellow CSA subscriber who seems suspiciously happy to have the dead woman out of the way.

The closer she gets to weeding out the culprit, the more Cam feels like someone is out to cut her harvest short. But to keep her own body out of the compost pile, she'll have to wrap this case up quickly.

Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell, Amazon Kindle format  Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell, Nook format  Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell, iTune iBook format  Til Dirt Do Us Part by Edith Maxwell, Kobo format

Minotaur Mysteries: Touch-Me-Not, A Victoria Trumbull, Martha's Vineyard Mystery by Cynthia Riggs

Minotaur Books

Minotaur Books, an imprint of Macmillan and a leading publisher of mystery and suspense books, currently has over 200 books available for $4.99 or less.

Today, we are pleased to feature one of these titles, Touch-Me-Not by Cynthia Riggs, now just $1.99. (Price verified on May 30, 2014 as of 2:00 PM ET.)

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Touch-Me-Not by Cynthia Riggs

Touch-Me-Not by Cynthia Riggs
A Victoria Trumbull, Martha's Vineyard Mystery (9th in series)
Publisher: Minotaur Books

A mathematical knitters group is working on a coral reef quilt for a competition to draw attention to global warming. When a telephone stalker begins preying on their members, they become terrified and distracted and turn to Victoria Trumbull for help. Victoria and Police Chief Casey O'Neill attempt to track down the man the women suspect of stalking, but he seems to have disappeared.

To complicate matters, someone gets killed. Victoria must solve the murder and also deal with issues on the home front when her daughter, Amelia, arrives from California, determined to help her mother and concerned that Victoria may be too great a burden on Elizabeth, Amelia's daughter.

Amazon Kindle Book

The Given by Vicki Pettersson, New on The Mystery Bookshelf in May 2014

The Mystery Bookshelf (

Today's featured paperback original mystery title, scheduled to be published during May 2014 by Harper Voyager, is The Given by Vicki Pettersson.

For a list of more new paperback mysteries, thrillers, and novels of suspense published this month, visit our Mystery Bookshelf page for May 2014. For hardcover titles, visit New Mysteries for a selection of books published during May 2014.

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The Given by Vicki Pettersson

The Given
Vicki Pettersson
Series: The Celestial Blues Trilogy

After learning his wife survived the attack that killed him fifty years earlier, angel/PI Griffin Shaw is determined to find Evelyn Shaw, no matter the cost. Yet his obsession comes at a price. Grif has had to give up his burgeoning love for reporter Katherine "Kit" Craig, the woman who made life worth living again, and dedicate himself to finding one he no longer knows.

Yet when Grif is attacked again, it becomes clear that there are forces in both the mortal and heavenly realm who'd rather see him dead than unearth the well-buried secrets of his past. If he's to survive his second go-round on the Surface, Grif will have to convince Kit to reunite with him professionally, and help uncover decades of police corruption, risking both their lives … and testing the limits to what one angel is really willing to give for love.

The Given by Vicki Pettersson, Amazon Kindle format

Minotaur Mysteries: Bleed a River Deep, A Benedict Devlin Mystery by Brian McGilloway

Minotaur Books

Minotaur Books, an imprint of Macmillan and a leading publisher of mystery and suspense books, currently has over 200 books available for $4.99 or less.

Today, we are pleased to feature one of these titles, Bleed a River Deep by Brian McGilloway, now just $2.99. (Price verified on May 30, 2014 as of 1:00 PM ET.)

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Bleed a River Deep by Brian McGilloway

Bleed a River Deep by Brian McGilloway
A Benedict Devlin Mystery (3rd in series)
Publisher: Minotaur Books

When a U. S. diplomat is attacked during the opening of a Donegal gold mine, Inspector Benedict Devlin is disciplined for the lapse in security. The gunman turns out to be an environmentalist who is the brother of an old friend of Devlin's.

Then the shooter is found dead near the mine and Devlin begins to suspect that the business is a front for something far more sinister.

Amazon Kindle Book

A New MystereBook: The Floating Girl by Sujata Massey

New MystereBooks (Mystery eBooks)

Here is a mystery, suspense, or thriller ebook that we recently found by sleuthing (as it were) through new or recently reissued titles from independent publishers during May 2014 priced $4.99 or less …

The Floating Girl by Sujata Massey is the fourth mystery in this series featuring antiques dealer Rei Shimura. It was originally published in hardcover by HarperCollins in 2000; this is its first appearance as an ebook. Previous books in this series have won the Agatha and the Macavity Awards.

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The Floating Girl by Sujata Massey

The Floating Girl by Sujata Massey
A Rei Shimura Mystery
Publisher: Ikat Press
Publication Date: May 28, 2014
Price: $0.99 (as of 05/30/14 12:30 PM ET)

Rei Shimura thinks writing a magazine column on the history of Japanese comic books will boost her reputation. During a weekend at her boyfriend Takeo's beachside house, she fixes on the perfect subject: an exquisite modern comic that reveals the disturbing social milieu of pre-World War II Japan. But when one of the comic's young creators is killed, Rei is drawn into Japan's youth underground.

She floats through strip clubs, anime shops and coffeehouses, and ultimately, into the Pacific Ocean itself. But will she get the story before the killer gets her?

Amazon Kindle Book

Important Note: This book was listed for the price indicated on the date and time as shown. Prices can and do change without prior notice. Please confirm the price of the book before completing your purchase.

New Poster for the Suspense Thriller A Walk Among the Tombstones

A Walk Among the Tombstones (September 2014)

A new poster has been released by Cross Creek Pictures for the suspense thriller A Walk Among the Tombstones (right; click for larger image). The tagline: "People are afraid of all the wrong things …"

Ex-NYPD cop Matt Scudder (Liam Neeson) now works as an unlicensed private investigator operating just outside the law. When Scudder reluctantly agrees to help a heroin trafficker (Dan Stevens) hunt down the men who kidnapped and then brutally murdered his wife, the PI learns that this is not the first time these men have committed this sort of twisted crime … nor will it be the last. Blurring the lines between right and wrong, Scudder races to track the deviants through the backstreets of New York City before they kill again.

Directed by Scott Frank from his own adapted screenplay and based on the novel of the same title by Lawrence Block (more details, below), A Walk Among the Tombstones opens in theaters September 19, 2014.

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A Walk Among the Tombstones by Lawrence Block

A Walk Among the Tombstones
Lawrence Block
A Matthew Scudder Mystery

A ruthless, ingenious pair of entrepreneurial monsters is preying on the loved ones of those who live outside the law.

Though he has no love for drug dealers and poison peddlers, ex-cop-turned-private investigator Matthew Scudder now must help them put two thrill-kill extortionists out of business — before another drop of innocent blood is spilled.

A Walk Among the Tombstones by Lawrence Block, Amazon Kindle format

A Conversation with Thriller Writer Terry Irving

Omnimystery News: Author Interview with Terry Irving
with Terry Irving

We are delighted to welcome novelist Terry Irving to Omnimystery News today, courtesy of JKSCommunications, which is coordinating his current book tour. We encourage you to visit all of the participating host sites; you can find his schedule here.

Terry's debut thriller is Courier (Exhibit A; April 2014 mass market paperback and ebook formats), in which a news courier and Vietnam veteran escapes his nightmares by pushing his motorcycle to the limit–but is it fast enough to escape a death squad?

We recently had a chance to speak with Terry about his book.

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Omnimystery News: We used the catch-all "thriller" to describe your new book, Courier. How do you categorize it?

Terry Irving
Photo provided courtesy of
Terry Irving

Terry Irving: I originally set out to write a book that would fit into an airport book kiosk and people would grab it to get them through a long flight. I haven't found a genre for that yet so I've been calling Courier a political/motorcycle thriller. Oddly only one person online has asked what that meant and I responded that he would just have to buy it and see.

(This reminds me of when I was the Executive Producer of the Imus on MSNBC program and we developed a graphics look that was half Navajo Indian and half mystical. In particular, we had a tape recorder that would run on the bottom of the screen when Imus would play a pre-recorded segment. I got emails all the time pointing out that the reels were turning the wrong way. I would respond with, "How do you know which way the reels on a Mystical Navajo Tape Recorder turn?")

Returning to the subject at hand, I suppose that Courier is a classic Hitchcockian thriller. An ordinary guy suddenly finds himself caught in a terrible situation where all these people are trying to kill him. There's even a Maguffin. That was Hitchcock's term for something that appears to be the point of the plot but isn't. The perfect example is the Maltese Falcon. The second they find it, it proves to be worthless but the plot never was about the damn statue — it was always exactly as Bogie described it:

Spade: When a man's partner is killed, he's supposed to do something about it. It doesn't make any difference what you thought of him. He was your partner and you're supposed to do something about it.

In other words, the classic American theme of the single person who has to decide to live by a code in a society without honor. Courier appears to be about Watergate — and it is — but it's really about an extremely damaged soldier who dances with death to clear the ghosts from his head and whether he will open up enough to let anyone else in.

Don't get depressed, it's not Kafka, there are also a LOT of fast motorcycles. It's a thriller, for Pete's sake!

OMN: Introduce us to Rick Putnam. Is Courier the first in a series featuring him as a lead character?

TI: I was a motorcycle courier for ABC News in 1973 and, in the very beginning, I tried to base Rick Putnam, the lead character, on myself. I don't think it took 30 minutes to realize that even I wouldn't read a book about me.

So I went looking for someone to hang the story on and I found a picture of a very young Nick Cage on a motorcycle. He was perfect: better-looking, smarter, a better bike rider, and a sexy guy. If there is a movie, I want him in the lead role. Now, I don't know Mr. Cage (pray for a movie option,) so as I went along, bits and pieces of other people I've known were added in. The Vietnam scenes came from several vets that I'd worked with over the years, the dual driver's licenses from a friend of my brother, Rick's roommates from a trio of roommates in my first group house. And then, as I was writing, everyone would change in very surprising ways. The only real criterion was that he or she had to be consistent with the person I could see in my mind's eye. I don't even think Rick was a Vietnam vet until I was thinking of "why would this guy be driving so fast?" and remembered how learning to race Formula Fords would clear all the cobwebs out of my head on the one chance I had to try it.

Once you've gone to all the effort of creating a viable, living character, it seems dumb to kill him or her off. I've already written the sequel, Warrior, where the characters grow and fill out. I've always like series novels — Spenser, Dennis LeHane's Angie Gennaro and Patrick Kenzie, all the way back to John D. MacDonald and his buddy Meyer.

OMN: You've mentioned a few series characters. Do you have a list of favorite series characters — or even literary characters, who may have appeared only once?

TI: In no particular order:

• Rudyard Kipling's Stalky
• Rudyard Kipling's Kim
• John D. MacDonald's Travis McGee
• Lee Child's Jack Reacher
• Barry Eisler's John Rain
• John Buchan's Richard Hannay
• John Le CarrÄ—'s George Smiley
• Dorothy Sayer's Lord Peter Death Bredon Whimsy
• Steven Erikson's Fiddler/Sarge
• Elmore Leonard's (and television's) Raylan Givens
• Jim Butcher's Harry Dresden
• Kim Harrison's Rachel Morgan

I could go on …

OMN: You and Rick Putnam seem to share a lot of the same experience.

TI: OK, this is something I have to make people understand.

I am not Rick Putnam.

I wish I was as cool, strong, and outrageous but it's never happened and I suppose there's no chance of it happening now. What I used from my own experience was the reality of Washington DC in 1972. I'll bet that everyone has a time and place that is simply chiseled deep into their memory — when you first went to college, when you got your first job, your first apartment, joined the military. What I was able to do in Courier was throw myself back to a time where everyone smoked all the time, where there was one female and one black correspondent on the network, no women except secretaries, where sexual harassment was a fun way to pass the time for most men, where Washington was a small town where friendship mattered far more than ideology.

Now, not only have all the social aspects changed, even the streets and buildings I describe are simply gone. There is no red light district, no strolling hookers two blocks from the White House, no dark and dingy bars, no old run-down back-alleys. They are all replaced by high-rise office buildings and gleaming (but usually empty) parks. (I still wonder about where all the working girls went — there used to be hundreds out there, they can't all be online, can they?)

As for the roles of blacks, women, gays, Hispanics and human beings in general, all of that began to change with the group of young people I started with. I went to high school with 6 kids who were the first to be in a co-ed class at places like Harvard, Princeton, and Yale. I roomed in a co-ed dorm in college. My girlfriend went to law school when there were only 5% women in a class and was told that she had to work for the government because no firm would allow a woman to be the lead attorney.

I keep getting criticisms — well-meaning and otherwise — about inaccuracies:

• How can I say that paralegals didn't know what they were doing? Well, because we were the first paralegals ever hired and the law firms had no clue what to do with us.

• How can I say that a motorcycle takes corners faster than a car? Because cars back then had horrible suspensions and would go right off the road if you turned at more than 25 MPH.

• How can I say that people were playing Dungeons and Dragons (or a variant) in 1972? After all, Wikipedia says it wasn't published until 1974. Because I bought the damn 12 sided dice while I was in college and couldn't find anyone to play with.

• Cars didn't have alarms back then. Sure did because they used to keep me awake in West Philly during the summers.

Sorry, I was just letting off steam. Please continue.

OMN: How true are you to the setting of Washington DC?

TI: I was either completely accurate or totally inaccurate. If the location was a real place that I remembered like the news bureau, I knew the number of steps to a turn in the hall. I knew how the place smelled, I knew how you could scrape nicotine off the walls. Even streets were awfully familiar: I can remember where there was gravel along MacArthur Boulevard and you'd lose traction, traffic lights that were timed so you could hit them all on the green, and one curve out in Maryland that I damn near died on because I was racing another courier (right outside Howard Hunt's house, as a matter of fact).

If, on the other hand, I was creating a place like an apartment or a garage interior, I just wanted to make it something that would reasonably fit into the period. Either way, I spent a lot of time searching for pictures of the period, or newspapers, or community newsletters. Even if you don't use that particular piece of research, you get a jolt by seeing the hairstyles, the clothes, the enormous cars, the battered storefronts. All that kicks off new ideas and new possibilities. I would have revisited more locations but — as I said — most of them are gone.

I also did a good deal of research on Watergate (and I do think that the basic premise of the novel is extremely possible — if not probable) but I didn't put most of that in because the book was about this guy named Rick and not about the Dick in the White House.

OMN: Describe your overall writing process for us.

TI: My writing process can best be described as like a demolition derby: chaotic and fast with stuff being thrown out right and left.

I was a writer for television and that means deadlines. I can remember doing a lineup of a show (in pencil and you had to learn to subtract minutes and seconds in your head — try that sometime!) and I looked up to realize that I had four cigarettes burning and my hand was so cramped from holding the pencil that I couldn't flatten it out.)

The most useful course I ever took in high school was typing because, if I can just put my fingers on the keys, words will simply flow. I tested that out one day at CNN when I had to write a moving obituary for a very nice co-worker who I simply didn't know. I looked at the research, slammed through some of the pictures, and found myself standing behind my desk. I looked up and saw that I had ten minutes to write the piece so it could have pictures laid on. I just sat down and put my fingers on the keys.

I was told it was very moving and became to go-to guy for poetic and sensitive scripts from then on. You know what they say, writing is all about sincere emotion and real connection with the reader.

And if you can fake that, you've got it made.

So, I'm fast. I wrote the first draft of Courier in 10 weeks and was irritated because I wanted to do it in two months. Now, I also re-wrote the book at least 5 times from beginning to end. I'm never satisfied with my work and hate to read the book or watch the documentary when it goes to air because I'm going to find a mistake — it's a guarantee. I also listen to other writers and marvel at how damn good they are. I can only write in a very plain, newspaper style and I envy the people who can make words jump up and dance.

So, to sum this up, my writing method is to sit down and write. Most of the time, I have at least a vague idea of where I'm going but that can change. Characters will say something and it will completely change who they are, events occur that I don't expect, conversations appear out of nowhere. I'll read a newspaper from the period and that will kick off a possible plot twist.

I just keep on writing and, usually, things begin to fall into place. That's not to say that I don't have (and read) The Seven Basic Plots, 20 Master Plots, How to Write a Damn Good Thriller, and How to Write about Guns for Writers who don't have Guns. I do and I am conscious of whether the tension levels are going up or down, where I am in the Killing of the Monster plot, or whatever. I just don't worry about it very much.

OMN: What's next for you?

TI: This process has been a wild ride. After being a courier, a copy boy, a producer, a combat producer, a senior producer, content boss for a couple of dotcoms, ghostwriter, and an expert in the legal placement of explosives on semi-trailer trucks, this is all new and extremely exciting.

I have already written the sequel to Courier and begun the third book (or at least begun to think about it,) I've done the first draft of the Courier movie screenplay, written the first draft of an urban paranormal thriller, and blocked out some of the elements of a private eye series set in 1930's Manila. That's all fairly easy. What I don't know how to do is to publicize a book, act correctly during interviews, and manage to get through a book-signing. If I can, I'm going to hit every bookstore and convention in sight.

Finally, this isn't really just for fun. I began this by mentioning that I've just been fired. For a number of very good reasons, I have very little retirement savings so this book thing really has to make some money. They could well be under pseudonyms but I promise you'll be seeing a steady stream of new books from me over the next few years. I suppose the object is just to keep trying until I get it right.

— ♦ —

Terry Irving Book Tour

From Terry Irving: Born in 1951 in Bryn Mawr PA so as to be close to my mother. Well, she said she was my mother but she lied about everything else, so who knows. Had no interest in being a journalist but somehow was editor of newspapers at age 3, age 5, 5th Grade, 7th Grade, 9th Grade and 12th Grade. Took a job as a motorcycle courier for ABC News in 1973 because … well, they were paying me to ride a BMW all day! Worked ABC News for 20 years, then something along the lines of 20 jobs in the next 30 years. I have now been fired more often than I've received Emmy Awards (5 and 4, if you're keeping score.) Over the past 25 years, I've turned to writing because people hate to write and consequently they'll pay you more for it. I've written anchor copy, reports from the field, commercial videos, CD-ROMs, Users Manuals, advertising for satellite data switching software, standup comedy, and documentaries. When I was fired in 2012, I realized that everyone in the news business knew who I was and therefore, there was no hope of getting another real job.

So I wrote a novel.

For more information about the author, please visit his website at TerryIrving.com or find him on Facebook and Twitter.

— ♦ —

Courier by Terry Irving

Courier
Terry Irving
A Suspense Thriller

It's 1972. The Watergate scandal has Washington on edge and Putnam, a Vietnam veteran and courier for one of the capital's leading television stations, is trying to get his life back together after his nightmarish ordeal in the war. Racing at breakneck speed through the streets of the capital, he not only intends to be the best courier in the business, he also intends to escape the demons that haunt him. But when Rick picks up film from a news crew interviewing a government worker with a hot story, his life begins to unravel as everyone involved in the story dies within hours of the interview and Rick realizes he is the next target.

Enlisting the aid of friends who have discovered a way to hack into the government's computer databases, and a beautiful young Indian Rights activist, Eva Buffalo Calf, Rick races full throttle through the streets of the nation's capital to stay ahead of his pursuers as he searches for answers. When he discovers the killings have been orchestrated by a rogue CIA agent and his team of assassins, Rick isn't surprised when his road to the truth leads directly to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

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