Monday, June 29, 2009


A posting on a blog, The Chilton Report, about a fatal car accident involving a troubled teenage boy, Travis Brigham, inspires vicious attacks. He disappears shortly after being questioned by California Bureau of Investigations foremost body language expert, Kathryn Dance. Fingers point to him as a killer when roadside crosses begin to appear, not as memorials, but as predictions of deaths to come. All of the victims have some connection to the blog and the lynch mob mentality that has arisen.

Travis is able to avoid capture by using techniques he learned as a brilliant participant in MMORPGs, Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games. He easily eludes his pursuers and continues to track his victims, some of whom Kathryn is able to save and some not.

Meanwhile, Kathryn has her own set of problems. Her mother, a nurse, is arrested and accused of the mercy killing of a young police officer horribly injured in a fire. The young officer was part of a team working with Kathryn Dance and Deputy Michael O'Neil on a previous case.

Among the obstacles Kathryn must hurdle are politicians from Sacramento, paranoid parents, threats to her own life and the blogger himself, James Chilton.

Deaver is a consummate story teller. This novel is filled with his signature plot twists, cliff-hangers and heartrending personal subplots. It is a contemporary novel with website addresses that will enhance the readers experience. He has created a politically themed blog, The Chilton Report, and a real body of work for the fictional blogger, James Chilton. I think Deaver has reached out to a new audience with this High Tech thriller. What do you think?

To hear my interview with Jeffery Deaver on my internet radio show, INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE, click on this link,

The show is currently available. You can also get a free download of any of the shows on INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE from I-Tunes.


The novel begins on a winter day in 1905 in a small town just outside New York. The bloody, mutilated body of Sarah Wingate is found in her own bedroom. No one heard anything. No one saw anything. No one knows anything.

Detective Simon Ziele is put on the case. After just one day of investigation, Ziele is contacted by Columbia University's noted criminologist, Alistair Sinclair. Sinclair comes to Ziele with the shocking claim that he knows who the murder is. Michael Fromley, a violent man and the subject of Sinclair's research, has previously described the murder in detail. Ziele is drawn into a spider web of intrigue and betrayal.
-What could have led Formley to single out Sarah, a brilliant mathematician and student who is involved in the women's right-to-vote movement?
-Is Fromley really the murder?
-Could it really be this easy to solve this brutal crime?
-Can Ziele really trust Alistair Sinclair?

The answers to these questions and many others face Simon Ziele in this taut thriller.

I love this book. The voice of the novel is just right. Pintoff certainly did her homework. I felt as if I had boarded a time machine and been transported back to the early 1900's, a time when manners and etiquette were much more a part of daily life. The plot twists and turns keep the reader guessing. What do you think?

Hear my interview with Stefanie Pintoff on INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE You can also get a free download of any of the shows on INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE from I-Tunes.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Sarah Andrews feel lost and abandoned since the death of her husband. Her daughter wants her to "move on," her psychiatrist wants her to "heal her wounds," and everybody else wants her to get over the fact that her husband is dead.

Sarah makes the decision to "end it all," so she heads for the beach with the intention of never coming back. But the sea has other plans and instead of drowning, Sarah discovers a civilization under the sea, she believes she has actually met people from another dimension. Suddenly, she finds herself alive and back on the beach. Did the incident really happen or has the whole thing been the product of an over-active imagination?

Sarah's life takes another unexpected turn when she finds herself in trouble with the law as the main suspect in the disappearance of a young heiress. Her family and psychiatrist are withdrawing their support and turning against her. Her world is becoming an uninhabitable place. Sarah is faced with a decision.

This is an intriguing novel. Graham is not just a story of loss, grief, and dealing with the death of a spouse. She also mixes in the unusual elements of fantasy and suspense to create an interesting novel. Graham has lost her own husband and brings that experience to bear in the story, but this is not a depressing novel of death. It is rather one of hope and inspiration for women who are suffering from loss. What do you think?

To hear my interview with Gail Graham on my internet radio show, INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE, click on this link. All of the shows are available on-demand and you can download any show free on I-Tunes:


By Ellen Byerrum

In KILLER HAIR, a beautiful dead hairstylist, a straight razor and a horrendously bad haircut all make Lacey Smithsonian's spidey style senses tingle and say it's murder.

Lacey Smithsonian is the Crimes of Fashion beat reporter for a newspaper. She wears vintage clothes and trips over fashion clues in killer heels while accidentally finding the occasional dead body. She’s always in trouble and in the wrong place at the wrong time. With the aid of her partners in crime fighting and detection, attorney Brooke Barton and hairstylist Stella Lake, they take on the world of crime.

The novels are clever and fun to read. Ellen Byerrum has a terrific, intelligent sense of humor and a nose for a good story. She has done a wonderful job creating a unique character.

Two of the Crime Of Fashion Mystery novel series written by Ellen Byerrum have been turned into movies and will be seen on the LIFETIME network June 21 and June 28. To learn more about the Crime of Fashion novel series novels and to hear my interview with Ellen Byerrum, click on

Monday, June 15, 2009

By Amanda Scott

Scottish Baroness Jenny Easdale is not quite of-age when her widowed father dies. She is made a ward of a kinswoman, Lady Phaeline, and her husband Lord Dunwythie. Feeling duty bound to get Jenny married and keep as much of her fortune in the family as possible, Jenny finds herself betrothed to Phaeline's spoiled, irresponsible younger brother, Reid.

A betrothal feast is held featuring a troupe of hired minstrel's. Impulsively, Jenny sneaks off to join the troupe for a little adventure prior to her unwanted marriage. A hue and cry arises when she is discovered missing. Lord Dunwythie enlists the aid of Sir Hugh Douglas, Phaeline's older brother, to secretly go after Jenny and bring her back in time for the wedding. Sir Hugh is a knight and baron in his own right. He lost the love of his life in childbirth, vowing to never to remarry, he has no time or patience for the whims of a young woman.

Sir Hugh catches up with Jenny and the minstrels only to find that she has accidentally learned of a plot to attack the most powerful lord in all of Scotland, Sir Archibald Douglas. The unlikely duo become united not only as an act in the minstrel's show, but sparks of a very different kind begin to fly as they try to warn Archibald Douglas and prevent war.

I love historical romances and Amanda Scott is one of the best. Her well-researched and historically accurate Scottish novels are not only fun to read, but educational as well. Scott takes great pains to get the history "just right." This is the first novel in her new Scottish trilogy and is based on a real incident in Scottish history. Put this novel in your carry-on luggage or take it to the beach. What do you think?

To hear my interview with Amanda Scott on my internet radio show, INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE, anywhere in the world on click on:


Anna Pigeon is in a very dark place and has been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. She finds herself placed on administrative leave to recover.

Anna's new husband, Paul, suggests a trip to Big Bend National Park and a leisurely, relaxing rafting trip down the Rio Grande. His hope is that the warmth and adventure of southwest Texas will help Anna heal. The power of the river and the rugged beauty of the Chihuahuan Desert begin to work their magic, but when murder, betrayal and loss are added to the itinerary, Anna finds herself and her companions in a fight for their lives.

This is the latest novel in the Anna Pigeon series. I always enjoy Nevada Barr's writing. I enjoy the combination of mystery and nature. The Rio Grande and the rugged landscape are as much of a character in this novel as any of the human characters. This is an adrenaline-pumping adventure story with lots of unexpected plot twists and turns, wonderful escape whether in your beach bag or in your carry-on luggage. What do you think?

To hear my interview with Nevada Barr on my internet radio show, INSIDE THE WRITER'S CAFE, anywhere in the world on click on:

*Already a New York Times Best Seller

Saturday, June 6, 2009

By Jon Land

Caitlin Strong is a fifth-generation Texas Ranger, proud to wear the badge of her father and grandfather.  She and her partner are caught in a firefight with drug mules from the Mexican Mafia and her partner is killed.  

Damaged not only physically, but also mentally Caitlin is  trying to purge herself of the guilt she feels as a result of the loss of her partner and ultimate resignation from the Texas Rangers.  She takes a job working with victims of torture and makes a shattering discovery that will reopen old wounds.  Caitlin's renewed investigation into the truth behind the bloody desert firefight uncovers a deadly plot that reaches into every American home and threatens the very core of this country.

Her only hope for success and survival is to team up with a deadly felon she sent to prison and who has every reason to want to see her dead.  Cort Wesley Masters is a deadly outlaw, but he holds the key to the truth Caitlin so desperately seeks.  Caitlin's tormented quest takes her into a dark world ranging from Washington to Bahrain to the wastelands of Mexico where she battles a giant of a killer sent after her by a mysterious Mexican Drug kingpin.

Wow, this is a really great novel.  I absolutely loved Caitlin Strong.  She is interesting, intelligent, and confident.  Plus the novel is great fun to read.  What do you think?

To hear my interview with Jon Land, go to WebTalkRadio, or click on this link:

By S. K. O'Toole

This novel is a combination of an old fashioned detective and new cyber crime, sort of Mike Hammer* meets World of Warcraft.

Denton Dodge is a private eye whose best friend dies under weird circumstances. His buddy, Jerry, is a beta tester for Real Whirled Games Software Corporation and his body is found hooked up to a computer in full VR gear. At first, it appears he has died from a heart attack, but a chance comment from one of the EMTs who responds to the call, leads Dodge to believe it is murder.

Dodge is led into the world of Real Whirled Games and begins to believe they have invented a game that is, quite literally, "to die for." His investigation in the real world takes him into the deadly fantasy world of the game when he must play for his life.

A fascinating action-packed novel that is fun and interesting to read. I enjoyed the book and learned a few things about gaming and virtual reality along the way. What do you think?

To hear my interview with S. K. O' Toole, go to this link on WebTalkRadio,
*Mike Hammer is a fictional detective created by Mickey Spillane.