Monday, August 22, 2016

Action, Adventure, and Suspense - Hot Pursuit by Roderick Thorp



About
From the author of Nothing Lasts Forever, the basis for the movie Die Hard, comes a heart-pounding thriller! When a young coast guard lieutenant commander, Sam Merrill, finds a "ghost" yacht full of one billion dollars' worth of gold, money, and contraband, he becomes a national sensation and the poster boy for America's war on drugs. As a reward, the government sends Sam and his wife, Amy, on an all-expenses-paid vacation to the Bahamas. Sam's newfound fame becomes a nightmare when Amy is kidnapped not long after they arrive in the tropical paradise. Sam is confronted with the pursuit of his life, fighting to save Amy and ultimately himself as he faces death-defying challenges at every turn and a drug kingpin named Chino who will stop at nothing to see him dead. In way over his head, outgunned, and outnumbered when the chase leads him to Cartagena, Sam has to overcome overwhelming odds as he races against time to figure out why his wife was kidnapped and where she is being held-and save her from bad guys who will stop at nothing to achieve their goals.

About the Author
Roderick Thorp is the author of The Detective, Rainbow Drive, and Nothing Lasts Forever, the basis for the movie Die Hard. He has worked as a private detective and done extensive crime reporting, including a twenty-one-part series on cocaine traffic in Southern California, which was published in the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. Thorp's other novels include Into the Forest, Dionysus, Slaves, The Circle of Love, Westfield, Jenny and Barnum, Devlin, and River.




Book Readers Review
Hot Pursuit is lite action/adventure fun

Hot Pursuit written by Roderick Thorp in 1995 has not been published before he died in 1999.  This version is from the original manuscript with no revisions.  Thorp is well known for three of his books made into movies, Die Hard being the most famous.
In Hot Pursuit Sam Merrill, a Coast Guard Lieutenant, is called out to investigate an abandoned ship that is suspect.  It turns out the yacht is full of contraband and money.  Sam is not comfortable with how the vessel appears and conditions, no heavy weather but the rescue is made.  Merrill and his wife are rewarded for the recovery by the government with to an all-expenses paid vacation.  There begins the tale!
The action is fast-paced and the novel quite short.  It is a bit dated written over twenty years ago.  If you are looking for a quick thriller that has mystery, intrigue, kidnapping, and much more, then the book is for you.  I received a copy from Open Road Integrated Media in return for an honest opinion. There are many twists and turns in the story but parts of it may not appeal to all readers.  The novel is a fast read and I would recommend it with four stars.  Thank you Open Road for the opportunity to read this book. 

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Chakana by W. E. Lawrence



W. E. Lawrence’s latest historical romance novel Chakana is filled with action, adventure, suspense, and intrigue.
Enter Drawing to Win a Kindle copy - Leave comment below with contact information


Synopsis:

In 1940, before the start of World War II, James Fleming, the original British secret agent, races on a high-stakes chase to track down the ancient lost treasure of King Huascar of the Incas. He must recover it before the Nazis do or the whole world will be in imminent danger.

But this is no ordinary treasure hunt. The Incas have proven their cunning and intellect in not only how they hid their treasure, but how they protected it. Fleming joins forces in the remote ruins of Peru, South America with Kate Rhodes, a policewoman on leave from the United States, her archaeologist brother, Nick, and their college professor, Dr. Charlie. Together, they must decode, interpret the clues, and face the challenges of the Chakana on their hunt for the treasure.

If this wasn’t difficult enough, the group is hounded throughout their search of the ancient Sacred Valley by international artifact smugglers, familiar with the Chakana and working with the Nazis, who are determined to acquire the treasure to help finance their war effort.  Intrigue, danger, suspense, action, adventure, and even romance abound in this brave band’s quest to save the free world.

Praise for Chakana:

“With its ability to keep readers' hearts in their throats from the first chapter to the last, adding political and social insights as a backdrop to character struggles, there's much to like about Chakana's powerful approach - and, hopefully, a movie, down the line.” – Diane Donovan for Midwest Book Review

“I absolutely loved this book. This book is an action-packed Indiana Jones style book that got me hooked from the beginning. I love that this book is full of action, adventure, mystery, and romance that will keep you keep reading and won't want to put down.” – 5 Stars, Canadian Book Addict

“If you love historical fiction, adventure or historical romance novels, then I would highly recommend you immediately add this book to your TBR.” – 5 Stars, The Writer’s Inkwell

Chakana by W.E. Lawrence is a romantic historical adventure that is impossible to put down. Chakana has all the adventure and excitement that will keep you on the edge of your chair and reading late into the night. W.E. Lawrence knows how to keep the suspense, romance, adventure and mystery alive on every page. If you like Indiana Jones, you will love Chakana. I don't think anyone will be disappointed when reading this book - it is a five star plus winner.” – 5 Stars, Readers' Favorite

About the Author:

W. E. Lawrence graduated in 1978 from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill with a BS in business administration. He has run a successful home health care supplies distributorship for the past twenty-three years.

Passionate about God, writing, reading, family, sports, politics, and America, Lawrence currently lives in Davidson, North Carolina, with his lovely wife and their two wonderful children.

W. E. Lawrence enjoys writing historical romance novels filled with action, adventure, and suspense. He published his debut novel Guardian of Paradise in October 2014.  To learn more, go to http://welawrenceauthor.wix.com/author

Readers can connect with W. E. Lawrence on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

PROLOGUE

Countryside outside Athens, Ohio 1934

    The rumble of thunder sent the horse into a nervous prance.  The animal jerked its head and whinnied as James Fleming pulled in the reins to steady his mount.  “Whoa there, big fella. It’s just a few boomers, nothing to be concerned about.”  But when he raised his gaze to study the sudden ominous build of cloud formations, the certainty of a brewing storm made him decide it was time to get back to the barn.  With a gentle tug, he turned the horse.  “All right, Major, you win.  Let’s go home.” 
     James had enjoyed these lone horseback outings through the hills and valleys of the countryside and took them as often as he could.  However, this would be his last ride.  He would miss America. Ohio in particular.  He had learned a great deal the three years he spent there, working and studying.  He even learned things he hadn’t intended, like riding horses owned by his sponsors who graciously opened their home and provided him with a place to stay.
     But the time had come to return home.  The winds of war were building between his homeland of Great Britain and Germany, now ruled by the radical Nazis hell-bent on avenging their defeat in the Great War.  His country needed him, and James, always a patriot, would contribute any way he could.
     He again looked to the sky.  The storm had moved in quicker than he expected.  Dark angry clouds now directly overhead made it look as if night was descending.  Gusty howls of wind and more rumbles of thunder gave sound to the suddenly eerie scene.  His horse became more frantic by the moment, pressing the need to get out of the weather as soon as he could.  Although unfamiliar with the shortcut through the valley and having been warned by the ranch hands that the territory contained dangerous marshland, he decided to take the chance.
    Entering the valley, his heart beat faster.  After little more than a hundred meters, the trail narrowed but he pressed on.  Clouds linked together and the low whistle of wind made the hair on his neck stand on end.  Thank God, it hadn’t started raining …yet. 
     Then a sudden crack of thunder crashed over their heads.  The horse bolted.  Using what he’d been taught, James fought the reins and had his mount under control in a matter of seconds.  He exhaled, then stopped to regain his bearings.  The animal had only traveled another dozen meters, but his relief was short lived. 
   The ground beneath them began to quiver.  When he tried to turn the horse, the earth sucked at the animal’s hooves like quicksand.  Again, his heart raced.  He had to get out, but the horse, now in full panic, reared back and threw him.  Falling backwards, he landed hard in the swampy marsh.  As he lay stunned, he heard the horse struggle to gain its footing, and then gallop away to freedom.
     The horse escaped, but James was not so fortunate.  Sinking, he tried to scramble out but the marsh restricted his movement.  The more he struggled, the faster he went down.  When up to his waist, he stopped.  This couldn’t be happening.  This was supposed to be his last day in America.  He couldn’t die like this.  But the wet mud and the tangy smell of rotting vegetation made it all too real. 
     Nearly panic stricken, James turned his head and caught sight of a fallen branch sticking up out of the marsh like an outstretched hand.  With trembling fingers, he reached out and grasped it.  After he pulled himself closer, he slung an arm over and hung on.  He tried to relax so he could catch his breath but each time he started to sink, he had to wiggle upward to keep his head above the marsh.
     Soon, the wet mud and exhaustion began to take its toll.  Though it looked hopeless, he began to shout.  He shouted as long and as hard as he could.

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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Valley of the Kings: The 18th Dynasty by Terrance Coffey


About
In this sweeping tale of ancient Egypt, Terrance Coffey magnificently evokes the turbulent reign of Amenhotep IV, the controversial pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty who single-handedly launched a religious revolution that nearly destroyed Egypt and was later challenged by his own son, King Tut.

After the untimely death of his older brother, six-year-old Prince Amenhotep IV becomes the unlikely heir to the Egyptian throne, the most powerful kingship in the ancient world. By the time he becomes pharaoh over a decade later, the growing influence of the wealthy and corrupt Amun priesthood threatens to undermine his sovereignty. Desperate to maintain power, Amenhotep outlaws the Amun religion, renames himself Akenaten, and proclaims himself the living incarnation of a single, all-powerful deity – the Aten, or sun. With the help of his headstrong mother, Queen Ty, and his beautiful wife, Nefertiti, Akenaten erects a new capital in the desert and entices thousands of citizens to uproot their lives and join him there. But the magnificent new capital harbors a host of new threats: betrayals, curses, conniving relatives, murderous jealousies, plagues, famine, hidden heretics, and foreign enemies.

Inspired by the actual Hittite and Amarna letters of the 14th century B.C.E., Valley of the Kings: The 18th Dynasty is a novel of intrigue, passion, and betrayal, resurrecting the thrilling story of a singular leader whose beliefs were both visionary and disastrous.


Interview
Welcome to my blog Terrance.  Thank you for taking the time to answer a few questions about yourself and your latest book.  We appreciate your work and views, particularly in these times of uncertainty.
 

Your Name
Terrance Coffey


Your contact info
E-mail:   terry@terrycoffey.com 

Book Title
Valley of the Kings: The 18th Dynasty

Available at
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01EG5NGFA

Blog/website URL
www.TerranceCoffey.com

Video URL

Q:
Tell us about your latest work—title, genre, etc.
A:
'Valley of the Kings' is an historical fiction book series that chronicles the turbulent lives of some of the most known and sometimes lesser known pharaohs of ancient Egypt. Told in story-form, it’s a fictional biography based on historical facts and events. The 18th Dynasty is Book 1 of the trilogy which recounts the reign of pharaohs in that particular dynasty. The next installment is The 19th Dynasty that will focus on the pharaoh Ramesses and the pharaohs that followed his reign.
Q:
What draws you to your genre(s)? Why is this type of story compelling to you?
A:
Since early childhood I shared a genuine love for history and historical biography. Real people of the past who have experienced real-life tragedies and triumphs I find fascinating and relatable. 
Q:
What is your writing process like? Do you map the whole thing out or do you just let it unfold?
A:
I’m an avid believer in outlining because I like the idea of having a roadmap that will carry me from the beginning to the end of the book.  It’s what keeps me focused. I first write each chapter by hand in a notebook then write it again in MS word making necessary changes as I transfer it.
Q:
What kind of research was involved?
A:
I actually started researching the story for Valley of The Kings in 2001, after stumbling across a televised biography about king Tut. Though the bio focused mainly on the young pharaoh, I was more intrigued by the story it wasn’t telling—the story of his father, the pharaoh Akenaten. The untimely death of the young pharaoh Tut was ominously tied to the life of his father who at the time of his reign was considered a heretic and it was his actions and decisions that almost destroyed the Egyptian superpower. I was fascinated by just the little I knew of his story and from that spark, I really got into researching the history of the 18th and 19th dynasty pharaohs. After two years of research, I wrote a fifty-page outline for a television mini-series based on my story and from that I wrote a one-hour pilot episode. I then put the whole thing away and would periodically update it whenever new information or recent discoveries in the tombs of Egypt were documented. I did this up until I actually began writing the book in 2014.
Q:
How much of YOU makes it into your characters?
A:
Probably very little. I’m more or less an introvert and most of my characters are extroverts who are unhinged and very clever.
Q:
How do you balance the need to have time to write with the needs of family, work, etc.?
A:
Most of my career I’ve worked as an independent consultant through my own company, so I’ve always been able to set my own working schedule so that it wouldn’t detract from my writing.
Q:
Have there been any authors in particular, that inspired your writing?
A:
Yes, Richard Matheson, Rod Serling, George RR Martin and Alice Walker.
Q:
What is the story behind how your book came about?
A:
 I asked a friend to read and then give me his comments on a television series pilot script I wrote back in 2003.  He loved it but felt the story deserved to be told in its entirety first, and suggested that I write a novel based on the series outline. At first I didn’t take the suggestion seriously because I had never written a book before, but because he was so tenacious in his opinion that it would make a great novel, I decided to give it a try. Once I started writing it in early 2014, I literally couldn’t stop. I worked on it at least 6 days a week, spending 5 to 8 hours on it a day. It was as if the characters were telling the story themselves. It took me about a year to actually complete the first draft and an additional six months for the 2nd and 3rd drafts. The editing took a total of five months before I passed the final manuscript on to the publisher.
Q:
What other projects are you currently working on or about to start?
A:
I’m working on the sequel to my debut novel Valley of the Kings called The 19th Dynasty and also a sci-fi thriller called “Something Happened to Maggie.
Q:
Could you share some of your marketing strategies?  Which ones are the most effective in your opinion?
A:
Though Amazon does the major part of the marketing for my book, I try to do something everyday to help market the book myself. I advertise my book links on related facebook bookclubs, twitter ads and other social media sites. I can’t really tell which strategy has been the most effective. For me, marketing is not fun at all but very necessary if you want your book to stand out. The challenging aspect is deciphering what information or marketing technique(s) are best and most effective for your particular book. 

 
Again, thanks Terrance for taking the time to share your knowledge with us. We appreciate you and your work.

BIO

Terrance Coffey is an author, screenwriter, composer, and Winner of the 2016 International Pacific Book Award for Best Historical Fiction. With a predilection for Egyptian history, he has written numerous short stories, screenplays, television pilots, and even Coca-Cola music jingles. Born in Chicago, Illinois, Terrance now lives in an ambitious little town near Atlanta, Georgia, where he constantly dreams of ancient Egypt.



Excerpt
Valley of the Kings: The 18th Dynasty (Chapter 6 excerpt)

DESPITE THE QUEEN and the pharaoh’s somber mood, their royal reception hall brimmed with military captains and soldiers eager to celebrate their victory over the Nubians with a commemoration to Montu, the god of war. For the special occasion, Amenhotep requested the most agile dancers and gifted musicians from the faraway land of Byblos to dance and parade around the reception hall like domestic animals, begging to please their masters in prostration to the Amun god—a ridiculous ritual in the eyes of Queen Ty.
Four female musicians from Egypt were chosen to join the others. They sat on the floor playing indigenous music on double-reed pipes, harps, sistras, and tambourines.
In the center of the hall, at the head of a massive slab that stretched the length of the room, Amenhotep hosted the festivities garbed in his new war armor. Queen Ty sat next to him dressed in her best silk and jewels. On the other side of Amenhotep sat Lady Lupita, Amenhotep’s secondary wife, the sister of Artassumara—king of Mitanni.
The remaining seats in the reception hall were filled by military officers and palace officials shouting over the music boisterously. Victory banquets were the types of events the queen could do without. If she had not been told that Lupita would be attending, she would have remained in her palace chamber, away from the debauchery of the soldiers and their desire to be surrounded by nude female servants with oversized breasts, catering to their every whim. This was beneath her, but she could not allow her husband’s secondary wife to be seen there without her in attendance. It was necessary for the high-ranking officials to witness her consuming a meal with her husband as a symbol of their unity.
Queen Ty forced a welcoming smile at Lupita who returned her gesture with the same disingenuousness. 
The girl was strikingly beautiful and was just fourteen years of age when she arrived a year earlier in Thebes to marry Amenhotep, accompanied by three hundred and seventeen maidservants. Though Queen Ty easily matched Lupita’s number of attendees, she could not compete with her youth. The young girl’s olive toned skin was perfectly kissed by the sun, and her eyelashes were naturally long and curved above the hazel pupils of her eyes. She had dimples in her cheeks that made her smile even more inviting. Her breasts were perky and her hips appeared overly developed because of her tiny waist. Every one of the young girl’s physical features appeared to be molded by the hands of a master sculptor, and what was even worse for the queen was that Lupita’s disposition was humble and kind, the abundance of which, along with her femininity, had enchanted Amenhotep. It all made for an alluring combination impossible for Queen Ty to outdo.
The smile she shared with Lupita shifted into a stare of contempt when the young girl turned her attention away from her and toward her animal. Lupita caressed a white cat perched on her lap. His name was Bastian, and he had sea-green eyes and a solid gold collar fitted with a ruby medallion that glistened around his neck. The queen loathed Lupita’s cat as much as she secretly envied her. Its presence at the banquet served as another entity united against her right to happiness with her husband.

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