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Archive for July 7th, 2017

Shades of Murder

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Shades of Murder (Mac Faraday – 3) by Lauren Carr

Question: What do you get the man with everything?

Answer: When that man is the heir of the late mystery writer Robin Spencer, retired homicide detective Mac Faraday, you get him cold case to solve.

In Shades of Murder, Mac Faraday is once again the heir to an unbelievable fortune. This time the benefactor is a stolen art collector. But this isn’t just any stolen work-of-art—it’s a masterpiece with a murder attached to it.

Ilysa Ramsay was in the midst of taking the art world by storm with her artistic genius. Hours after unveiling her latest masterpiece—she is found dead in her Deep Creek Lake studio—and her painting is nowhere to be found.

Almost a decade later, the long lost Ilysa Ramsay masterpiece has found its way into Mac Faraday’s hands and he can’t resist the urge to delve into the case.

A world away, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; former JAG lawyer Joshua Thornton agrees to do a favor for the last person he would ever expect to do a favor—a convicted serial killer.

The Favor: Solve the one murder wrongly attributed to him.

Joshua finds an unexpected ally in Cameron Gates, a spunky detective who has reason to believe the young woman known to the media only as Jane Doe, Victim Number Four, was the victim of a copycat. Together, Joshua and Cameron set out to light a flame under the cold case only to find that someone behind the scenes wants the case to remain cold, and is willing to kill to keep it that way.

Little do these detectives know that the paths of their respective cases are on a collision course when they follow the clues to bring them together in a showdown with a killer who’s got a talent for murder!

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Author’s Bio

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries. The twelfth installment in the Mac Faraday Mystery series, Candidate for Murder is scheduled for release on June 20, 2016.

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. If you would like to ask Lauren to appear at your event, feel free to contact her using the form below.

She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real Gnarly) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Website     Facebook     Twitter

My Review

5 stars

Ilysa Ramsay was taking the art world by storm when she is suddenly killed and her last painting disappears. Ten years later, Mac Faraday receives a package from a questionable collector that had a soft spot for his mother Robin Chase. The package is the missing Ilysa Ramsay painting and before he knows what’s happening people are trying to buy it from him and breaking into his house.

At the same time Joshua Thornton is a military lawyer and detective. He is on vacation with no kids in the house and gets a call from Cameron Gates, a serial killer. He was blamed for one victim that was never identified and it has bothered him since he didn’t kill her. He asks Joshua to look into Jane Doe. Joshua meets up with the detective that worked the case and together they find themselves in Deep Creek Lake.

Mac has his hands full when a missing painting shows up on this door steps. Mac has a bunch of rich people that act that way and are more worried about money than family values. I loved Gnarly and the toll bridge, too funny.

But then you get introduced to Joshua Thornton. I read the first two Thorny Rose mysteries and really enjoyed his son and Mac’s daughter. He did a great job in Shades of Murder and I can’t wait to read his mystery series.

This was another great Mac Faraday mystery. I loved the twists and the real reason the painting disappeared. Once again I didn’t really know who the killer was and was caught off guard by the reveal. I love these mysteries and recommend them to everyone.

I received Shades of Murder from iRead Book Tours for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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Guest Post: So Many Murders, So Many Plotlines

By Lauren Carr

A while back, my son brought up a discussion that he and some of his friends had. According to something one of them had read on the Internet (so it must be true), there are only seven basic story plotlines. All of the stories and books written are variations of any of these seven plots. Therefore, my son said with a cocky grin, my books are not original because all of the basic plotlines have already been written.

Stab me in the heart, why don’t you? Writers are always striving for new ideas or new twists to old ideas.

As a mystery writer, I confess that I do work off of one basic plotline: commit murder, search for clues, piece together the clues, identify the killer, catch the killer. Hopefully, my main characters can have some fun and adventure along the way.

Now, this is not to be confused with being a formula writer, which I believe is what my son was insinuating. Writers who use formulas work almost from a template, not unlike an administrative assistant will use a Word Doc template for a letter: para 1 (introduction), para 2 & 3 (message), para 4 (closing).

While the basic plotline for murder mysteries may be the same, the genre has come a long way, baby. Since Edgar Allen Poe’s The Purloin Letter, the murder mystery genre has grown and branched and sprouted new sub-genres: thriller, suspense, cozy, romance-mystery, medical-mystery, courtroom-mystery, hobby-cozy, etc. As a writer or a reader, you name what you like or what you don’t like and you can find it in this genre if you hunt hard enough.

The twists and turns that a murder investigation can go are as numerous as the setting (small town/big city), motives, weapons, and suspects.

One website I found listed eighteen common motives for murder from money to jealousy to desire for fame to survival. We aren’t even talking about the less common ones: to benefit someone else. An example is bumping off someone in order to have a loved one inherit.

In A Fine Year for Murder, the Thorny Rose detectives, newlyweds Jessica Faraday and Murphy Thornton have to check off a few of these motives when investigating the cold case murder of a family. Which family member was the intended target? Was the motive theft or revenge? Or was it to silence a blackmailer?

Weapons: Used to be knives, guns, and poisoning with arsenic or strychnine were the standard weapons for murder. I remember reading a mystery that was written years ago where the detective concluded that the killer was a woman because the weapon was poison. Such sexism would not fly anymore.

Do you want your victim to drop dead instantly or do you want a delayed reaction? Choose your poison wisely.

Yes, the genre has really changed since the basic plotline was created.

Old school murder mysteries used to have the mystery end with identifying the killer, who, in the face of all the evidence against him or her, breaks down and confesses. However, in recent years, readers have become so savvy about the justice side of things, that it is not enough for the detective to simply identify the killer. How many cases have made the news of known killers walking free because of a mess up by the investigating officer violating a suspect’s rights, evidence being compromised, or some other legal loophole or twist by the defense attorney?

No, now mystery writers have to be on top of how the legal system works. It is not enough to identify the killer. The detective also has to catch him in such a way that there is justice in the end. The reader has to close the book knowing that the killer is going to jail for a very long time.

Yes, maybe my son is right in that there are seven basic plotlines. Maybe at the very root of a book or story, this is the case.

When it comes to a murder mystery, the possibilities are endless if you use your imagination. In the hands of an imaginative writer, anything can sprout from those roots.

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Infinity


Book Details:Book Title: Infinity by Tabitha Lord
Category: Adult Fiction, 304 pages
Genre: Science Fiction, Space Opera
Publisher: Wise Ink Creative Publishing
Release date: June 6, 2017
Tour dates: May 22 to July 14, 2017
Content Rating: PG-13 + M (violence, non-explicit sex, language)

Book Description:

In the second installment of the award-winning Horizon series, Dr. Caeli Crys returns to her war-torn world to fight for those she left behind.

Almagest, Caeli’s home, stands on the brink of revolution. Long hidden from the rest of the galaxy, the once-peaceful planet suffers under a regime that grows more violent and oppressive by the day. Marcus, Almagest’s dictator, is building an arsenal of alien weaponry by selling empathic children into slavery. A resistance has risen, but they are outmanned, outgunned, and in hiding.

Joined by Commander Derek Markham and his elite squadron of operatives, Caeli embarks on a dangerous mission to find the Resistance, rescue her captive people, and save her civilization from destruction.

 Buy the Book:

 Amazon  ~  Barnes & Noble

Meet the Author:

Tabitha currently lives in Rhode Island. She is married, has four great kids, two spoiled cats, and lovable lab mix. Her degree is in Classics from College of the Holy Cross and she taught Latin for years at an independent Waldorf school, where she now serves on the Board of Trustees.

Tabitha’s debut novel, Horizon, won the Writer’s Digest Grand Prize for Self-Published Fiction in 2016, and was named finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards and National Indie Excellence Awards. Infinity, the second book in the Horizon series, will be released in June 2017. Her short story “Homecoming” appears in the anthology Sirens, edited by Rhonda Parrish and published by World Weaver Press, and was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She is also a senior editor for www.BookClubBabble.com.

Visit her blog at www.tabithalordauthor.com where she discusses favorite topics including parenting, teaching, and her writing journey.

Connect with Tabitha: Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

My Review

5 stars

The Alliance has heard about Caeli’s people and has decided that they need to protect them so Caeli and Derek return to Almagest. They learn that Marcus has decided to control her people and has been selling the children into slavery. Caeli and Derek meet up with the resistance, some of Caeli’s people and some of Marcus’ that know what he is doing is wrong. It’s going to be a battle but if they win freedom is the best reward.

I have to say after reading Horizon I was left wanting. This is what I was missing. Caeli has become a doctor and her relationship with Derek is strong. Once the Alliance has heard about Caeli’s people and what they can do of course they are going to step in and stop Marcus. Although they don’t have a plan they are met with the resistance and know that is the best place to begin.

This story has love, action, lose, and the worse that people could do to others. There is something for everyone and I really enjoyed this book. I can’t wait to see what else Tabitha Lord is going to come up with.

I received Infinity from iRead Book Tours for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE:

May 22 – Working Mommy Journal – review of Horizon / giveaway
May 22 – To Be Read – review of Horizon
May 23 – Working Mommy Journal – review of Infinity / giveaway
May 24 – 411 on Books, Authors and Publishing News – spotlight / guest post/giveaway
May 25 – Bound 4 Escape – review of Horizon / giveaway
May 26 – Cheryl’ Book Nook – review of Horizon / author interview / giveaway
May 29 – Book review nature photos and everything in between – review of Horizon
May 30 – Library of Clean Reads – review of Horizon / giveaway
May 31 – Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf – review of Horizon / giveaway
May 31 – Lisa Loves Literature – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
June 1   – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review on Horizon
June 2   – A Mama’s Corner of the World – review on Infinity
June 5   – Haddie’s Haven – review of Horizon / guest post / giveaway
June 6   – The Autistic Gamer – review of Horizon
June 7   – The Autistic Gamer – review of Infinity
June 8   – Library of Clean Reads – review of Horizon / giveaway
June 9   – Cheryl’ Book Nook – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 12 – To Be Read – review of Infinity
June 12 – Deal Sharing Aunt – review of Horizon / giveaway
June 13 – Haddie’s Haven – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 14 – Mystery Suspense Reviews – review of Horizon
June 15 – Bound 4 Escape – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 16 – 100 Pages A Day – review of Horizon / guest post / giveaway
June 19 – Elsie’s Audiobook Digest – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
June 20 – Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 21 – Deal Sharing Aunt – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 22 – Books, Dreams, Life – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
June 26 – Nighttime Reading Center – review of Horizon / giveaway
June 27 – Crossroad Reviews – review of Horizon
June 28 – Baker Kella – review of Horizon / author interview / giveaway
June 29 – Baker Kella – review of Infinity / giveaway
June 30 – Svetlana’s Reads and Views – review of Horizon
July 3   – Book review nature photos and everything in between – review of Infinity
July 4   – Sharing Stories – review of Horizon
July 4   – Books for Books – review of Horizon
July 5   – Lukten av trykksverte – review of Horizon / giveaway
July 6   – JBronder Book Reviews – review of Horizon / guest post
July 7   – JBronder Book Reviews – review of Infinity
July 7   – A Book Geek – review of Horizon
July 10 – Nighttime Reading Center – review of Infinity / giveaway
July 11 – Books for Books – review of Infinity
July 11 – Crossroad Reviews – review of Infinity
July 12 – Lukten av trykksverte – review of Infinity / giveaway
July 13 – A Book Geek – review of Infinity
July 13 – Reviews in the City – book spotlight / author interview / giveaway
July 14 – Sharing Stories – review of Infinity
July 14 – Svetlana’s Reads and Views – review of Infinity

 
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