#BookSale “When the Children Return (Children of the Eye Book 2)” by Barry Kirwan

book cover

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When it finally comes, we won’t even know what’s hit us.

Ten years have passed since the Axleth invaded Earth and a few hundred humans escaped aboard the ship Athena, piloted by the Artificial Intelligence who calls himself Ares. Now, the refugees approach Earth, determined to take back their home. But something has followed them from deep in space, and as war breaks out on Earth, humanity must decide who is the real enemy.

Praise for Barry Kirwan…

A fantastic and original premise…flashes of Stephen King and MR Carey.Tom Witcomb

Kirwan lights the fuse on a new SF seriesaction-adventure and dark-edged SF that will enthrall readers.” Kirkus Reviews

★★★★★ Great story-telling. Intelligent, compelling, and told in a direct, easy-to-read style.” Susan Yea

★★★★★ “The writing is even and solid throughout, with interesting, intelligent characters who fight against horrific odds with every advantage and resource they can muster. I‘m getting the sequel as soon as it comes out!” Adrian B.

★★★★★ “A taut thriller, with a Lee Child feel to its staccato writing and strong action sequences, and a high concept stretching the novel into true science fiction territory.” Amanda Rutter.

★★★★★ “I’ve read and enjoyed first contact stories before, but the unique plot and realistic characters of When the Children Come make it a memorable book that goes on the re-read shelf. Felicia Denise

★★★★★ “Not just a page-turner – all in all a fabulous novel, which I was sad to finish.” Loulou Brown

★★★★★ “Kirwan’s writing really feels authentic. His knowledge is clearly well-researched, and the themes of this novel felt real. I absolutely loved the vivid descriptions, the characters (Sally is awesome), the struggles. Everything felt real. I was on the edge of my seat!” Jessica Belmont

Kindle Unlimited

99c for a limited time!

Amazon US

Amazon UK

 

~~~

#BookReview “Pay or Play (A Charlie Waldo Novel, 3)” by Howard Michael Gould

January 1-31, 2022 Virtual Book Tour

Pay or Play book cover

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5/5 Stars!

Charlie Waldo is a man torn between his minimalist beliefs and finding the truth. Once a star detective with LAPD, his world crashed around him when he helped send a man to prison, only to later find out the man was innocent. His campaign to win the man his freedom made him a pariah in the department. Life bottomed out for Charlie when he found out the innocent man is killed in a prison fight.

Disillusioned, Charlie walks away, buying twelve acres in the mountains to embark on a lifestyle that would make Thoreau smile. He’s determined to do no more damage. To hurt no one else. So, he lessens his carbon footprint by growing his own food, drinking only tap water, and using only transportation that is either public or self-propelled.

He also owns only One Hundred Things.

While I found Charlie’s commitment to the survival of humankind and the planet laudable, to me, it was simply guilt he couldn’t… or didn’t want to get past.

But once a good cop, always a good cop.

During one of his infrequent trips down the mountain to visit on-again, off-again girlfriend, Lorena Nascimento, the private investigator tries to pull him into one of her cases. Again. This time, it’s easy for her when Charlie finds out the prospective client is the star of his guilty pleasure television show, Judge Ida Mudge.

The thirty-five-year-old hazing death of a student from the Judge’s college days may not be the accident it’s believed to be, but the investigation not only keeps Charlie in conflict with widening his carbon footprint, it also conflicts with his other case – finding out why a homeless man died in a strip mall fountain. Charlie would shake the case off but he is hired by a drug trafficker with little patience and who doesn’t accept no for an answer.

Though he wishes he could deny it and return to his mountain, both cases get Charlie’s detective hackles up when finding the truth could also mean finding a murderer.

But how much of himself is he willing to give? Can he hold fast to his beliefs? Does he want to?

Though I found him to be too tightly wound, I liked Charlie Waldo. He tries to stand on his principles, but he’s flawed six ways from Sunday and he knows it. Lorena is also a strong, likable character who wants more from life… and Charlie, but knows she may have to settle for life.

I haven’t read the previous books in the series, but Pay or Play contains just enough back story to key readers in and stands on its own. However, good writing and original story lines have me curious enough to want to start at the beginning!

Enjoy!

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Synopsis:

 

Blackmail, sexual harassment, murder . . . and a missing dog: eccentric, eco-obsessed LA private eye Charlie Waldo is on the case in this quirky, fast-paced mystery.

Paying a harsh self-imposed penance for a terrible misstep on a case, former LAPD superstar detective Charlie Waldo lives a life of punishing minimalism deep within the woods, making a near religion of his commitment to owning no more than One Hundred Things.

At least, he’s trying to. His PI girlfriend Lorena keeps drawing him back to civilization – even though every time he compromises on his principles, something goes wrong.

And unfortunately for Waldo, all roads lead straight back to LA. When old adversary Don Q strongarms him into investigating the seemingly mundane death of a vagrant, Lorena agrees he can work under her PI license on one condition: he help with a high-maintenance celebrity client, wildly popular courtroom TV star Judge Ida Mudge, whose new mega-deal makes her a perfect target for blackmail.

Reopening the coldest of cases, a decades-old fraternity death, Waldo begins to wonder if the judge is, in fact, a murderer – and if he’ll stay alive long enough to find out.

Pay or Play is the third in the Charlie Waldo series, following Last Looks and Below the Line. Last Looks was turned into a major motion picture, starring Charlie Hunnam as the offbeat private investigator.

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller, Private Detective

Published by: Severn House Publishers Limited

Publication Date: December 7th 2021

Number of Pages: 224

ISBN: 0727850857 (ISBN13: 9780727850850)

Series: Charlie Waldo, #3

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

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Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!

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Join In:

This is a giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Howard Michael Gould. See the widget for entry terms and conditions. Void where prohibited.

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#BookTour “Pay or Play (A Charlie Waldo Novel, 3)” by Howard Michael Gould

Pay or Play by Howard Michael Gould BannerJanuary 1-31, 2022 Virtual Book Tour

Pay or Play book cover

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Synopsis:

 

Blackmail, sexual harassment, murder . . . and a missing dog: eccentric, eco-obsessed LA private eye Charlie Waldo is on the case in this quirky, fast-paced mystery.

Paying a harsh self-imposed penance for a terrible misstep on a case, former LAPD superstar detective Charlie Waldo lives a life of punishing minimalism deep within the woods, making a near religion of his commitment to owning no more than One Hundred Things.

At least, he’s trying to. His PI girlfriend Lorena keeps drawing him back to civilization – even though every time he compromises on his principles, something goes wrong.

And unfortunately for Waldo, all roads lead straight back to LA. When old adversary Don Q strongarms him into investigating the seemingly mundane death of a vagrant, Lorena agrees he can work under her PI license on one condition: he help with a high-maintenance celebrity client, wildly popular courtroom TV star Judge Ida Mudge, whose new mega-deal makes her a perfect target for blackmail.

Reopening the coldest of cases, a decades-old fraternity death, Waldo begins to wonder if the judge is, in fact, a murderer – and if he’ll stay alive long enough to find out.

Pay or Play is the third in the Charlie Waldo series, following Last Looks and Below the Line. Last Looks was turned into a major motion picture, starring Charlie Hunnam as the offbeat private investigator.

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller, Private Detective

Published by: Severn House Publishers Limited

Publication Date: December 7th 2021

Number of Pages: 224

ISBN: 0727850857 (ISBN13: 9780727850850)

Series: Charlie Waldo, #3

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

~~~

Read an excerpt:

ONE

It wasn’t the sex that set Waldo’s woods on fire, it was the afterglow.

Surrounded by forest, nearly all its structures made of wood, his mountain town of Idyllwild had already seen five homes destroyed, the remainder evacuated. Route 243 was closed on both sides, leaving Waldo and all the other residents cut off and fearing the worst. As the record temperatures of summer 2018 scorched California, infernos blossomed up and down the state. Six people were dead in the one up north, the one called the Carr.

Watching clips of his wildfire, the Cranston, from a hundred miles away and the safety of Lorena’s house, Waldo knew it would take a miracle to keep the rest of Idyllwild from being consumed. He didn’t know whether his own cabin was already lost. He didn’t know if his chickens were still alive.

What he did know was this: the conflagration was all his fault.

Not literally, of course. It wasn’t like he’d lit the match. And he hadn’t set the tinderbox. The planet was rebelling. Climate change had made this fire season hotter and drier. Forest-management practices left more fuel on the ground, too, the unintended reper¬cussion of conscientious wildlife protection. Those were the reasons Waldo’s mountain was burning.

Those and, according to the news, arson.

But Waldo knew better. Call it karma, call it moral justice – Waldo knew his own wobbling had something to do with it, too.

 

Four years earlier, Waldo learned in an instant the precariousness of the world, the damage one man could do, the damage he could do, when his own zealous police work had led to the death of an innocent man. His life since had been a daily struggle not to do any more.

He had resigned from the force, ghosted his girlfriend Lorena and everyone else he knew, and bought twelve acres in Idyllwild, in the San Jacinto mountains, where he lived for three solitary years in self-sustaining austerity, making a near religion of his commitment to a zero-carbon footprint and to owning no more than One Hundred Things. And that worked for him, at least until Lorena showed up and triggered the chain of events which drew him away from his refuge and back into civilization.

She’d hoped to coax him into joining her expanding PI business, and back into their relationship, too. The latter took; the former, not so much. He did work one case with her, a missing-persons that turned rancid and left Waldo with no taste for more. She eventually stopped trying and seemed to accept the relationship as it was. He’d come down the mountain for a visit about once a month, usually for a few days when Willem – the male model she’d married during Waldo’s absence, estranged now but still her housemate – was out of town on a shoot.

It was a delicate equilibrium: less than Lorena wanted, but enough; a constant test of Waldo’s punishing minimalism, but within bounds he could handle.

Then Willem, wanting to cash in on the overheated L.A. real estate market, insisted that Lorena agree to sell their jointly owned Koreatown bungalow as a final condition of their divorce. He moved out the day the papers were signed.

The next time Waldo came to visit, the common spaces looked barren, Willem apparently the owner of most of their thousands of Things, including almost all the furniture.

Lorena looked lost in the empty house. That plucked at Waldo in ways he didn’t expect, and he ended up staying in town longer than he ever had before, almost two weeks. One night, after love-making fierce and profound even by their standards, Lorena said, ‘What if we got a place together?’

In a sense, it was reasonable to muse on.

In another, it was absurd. How could that work? In L.A., just as in Idyllwild, Waldo maintained his exacting rules for living, not allowing himself even an extra toothbrush to leave at her place. Meanwhile, in the face of his asceticism, Lorena clung to her consumerist pleasures all the harder. So, did she mean for him to give up his cabin, and to battle out all their joint decisions, item by item, precept by precept? Or did she mean for him to keep his cabin, and cohabit a second home, profligate beyond imagining?

That these questions were even on the table was a sign that

Waldo had gotten too comfortable here. His heart starting to race, he silently recited his catechism, the covenant with the world which he’d devised and repeated aloud regularly for his first few months alone on his mountain until it had become ingrained:

Don’t want, don’t acquire, don’t require.

Don’t affect.

Don’t hurt.

The answer was not complicated. It was not ambiguous. He needed to hold fast. Every time he hadn’t, every time he let his resolve slip, every time he compromised the principles which had redeemed him, something had gone wrong.

And this compromise would be bigger than anything Waldo had ever contemplated, the consequences surely bigger, too. He had to say no. Of course he had to say no.

He looked over at Lorena, her eyes closed, her lip curled in a gentle smile, and before he knew it he too was lost in the after¬glow. That ruinous afterglow.

And what Waldo said was: ‘Maybe.’

By the next afternoon, his mountain was in flames.

Four days later, alone in Lorena’s barren kitchen, Waldo scoured the internet for any morsel of new information. Evacuated – what did that actually mean? Had anyone remained to support the fire-fighters, or was it a ghost town? Not that he knew any of his fellow denizens anyway, even after four years, other than his batty neighbor Hilda Flitt, who kept an eye on his chickens when he was away. And Hilda wasn’t answering her phone.

Nor was Lorena, for that matter. He shot her another text and went back to surfing.

Surfing and blaming himself for the fire.

Not that he could talk about his guilt with Lorena. She’d already said something about him ‘getting worse’ and one time (at a downtown Szechuan restaurant, after he questioned the waiter as to why a restaurant that puts Environment Friendly! on the menu still tops the meal with plastic-wrapped fortune cookies), even asked whether he ‘ever thought about talking to somebody.’ Sure, why wouldn’t she want that? It’d be so much easier to have that ‘somebody’ browbeat Waldo into complaisance than to develop some environmentally responsible habits herself.

Maybe, though, this was what ‘getting worse’ looked like. Holding to rules was one thing, magical thinking another entirely, and after all, it was the guy with the barbecue lighter and the WD-40 who’d set the mountain ablaze, not Waldo.

Still.

It all happened just hours after Waldo’s maybe, and it was Waldo’s town about to be devoured, and Detective III Charlie Waldo had never believed in coincidences.

As the day wore on, the news from Idyllwild began to improve. Firefighters, dropping retardant from the sky, managed to cut the inferno just before it reached the Arts Academy, and suddenly they were using the words ‘mostly contained.’ Deep into the night, Hilda Flitt still wasn’t answering her phone. But the authorities had reopened 243, so Waldo could go back in the morning to see for himself whether his home was safe, whether he even had any Things left, save the ones on his back.

Waldo waited up for Lorena like he always did. He sprawled on her bed with his Kindle, chipping away at Richard White’s massive history of the late nineteenth-century United States, specifically a grim chapter about how American ‘progress’ killed off the bison and pushed the Native Americans to the reservations. Even though Waldo enjoyed the book greatly – it filled multiple lacunae in his knowledge and was peculiarly relevant to the U.S. in 2018 – tonight he struggled not to put it down.

What he itched to do instead was stream another episode of his new addiction, the sinfully titillating Judge Ida Mudge, which Lorena had told him about just this week and which instantly wormed its way into Waldo’s limbic system like none of his favorite junk television shows ever had, not even prime MTV Cribs. But he’d already watched two, using up the daily hour he allowed himself.

Waldo pushed to the end of the chapter and checked Lorena’s bedside clock. It was past midnight, later than he ever stayed up in his woods. Was his junk TV ‘day’ defined by his sleep schedule, or by the clock? That is, could he allow himself to watch ‘tomorrow’s’ Judge Idas now? If he was going to spend much of the next day traveling, he might not have time to watch anyway – so why not allow himself a smidgen of ethical squinching and stream an episode? Or two.

The sound of Lorena’s key in the door saved him from the lapse.

He went out to meet her in the living room. ‘Sorry I didn’t answer your texts,’ she said. ‘I got caught up with something.’ Her vagueness didn’t throw Waldo like it would have during the jealous years. She added, ‘I don’t want to talk about it.’

He shrugged, You don’t have to.

Apparently she did, though. ‘Something with an op. I had to take over a tail.’

‘Fat Dave?’ Lorena had three part-time operatives, two LAPD washouts and a wannabe. She swore they carried their weight but he found that hard to believe. Fat Dave Greenberg, whose rep as a world-class douchebag radiated far beyond Foothill Division, was the worst of them, as far as Waldo was concerned.

She repeated, ‘I don’t want to talk about it,’ and Waldo repeated his you don’t have to shrug, but again she did. ‘Reddix,’ she said. Lucian Reddix was a young African American, the only one Waldo didn’t know from the force and the one for whom Lorena had the softest spot. ‘He was on a marital tail, followed the subject into a bar. Caught her with her boyfriend, was starting to shoot them on his phone . . . but the bartender came over and he asked for a beer.’

‘So?’

‘So they carded him. He’s not twenty-one until November.’ And this was her star. ‘It turned into a thing. Kid was sure he was made. Don’t say it.’

Waldo didn’t have to; he’d said plenty in the past. These jokers were one more reason not to enmesh himself in Lorena’s business.

‘Anyway,’ she said, ‘I went over and picked it up for him.’

‘Get what you need?’

‘And then some. Too cheap for a motel, these two. Got it on right in his car. Anyway, I wasn’t checking my texts – sorry. Listen,’ she said, changing the subject, ‘I could use a favor.’

He tensed; something in her voice told him it had to do with work. ‘Yeah?’

‘I’ve got a meeting with a prospective in a couple days. It’d help to have you there.’ It was the first time in half a year she’d tried to coax him onto a case. ‘I’m pretty sure you’d like this one.’ He’d heard that before.

Waldo said, ‘243’s open.’

‘Oh. Fire’s out?’

‘Contained enough, I guess. I’ve got to get up there.’

She drew a breath at the rejection. It had cost her something to ask again.

‘How?’ she said. ‘Not on your bike . . .?’ Since Waldo basically restricted himself to transportation that was either public or self-propelled, each trip from L.A. to Idyllwild meant a bus and then a tortuous, torturous bicycle climb. She said, ‘I could drive you.’

And then, she was no doubt thinking, she could drive him back down, once he was assured that his property was all right. Back to L.A. and her prospective client meeting. Back to L.A. and looking for a place for them to share.

He couldn’t do it. Besides, he had long ago decided that he’d grant himself a waiver to ride in a private automobile only with someone who’d already have been making the drive without him; clearly that didn’t apply here. He said, ‘I’ll be fine.’

‘With the smoke and everything? That’s so not healthy.’

She was probably right, but he tipped a shoulder anyway, a second rejection.

‘Waldo . . .’

‘I’ll be careful.’ Waldo knew he should hit her with a third, to rip off the Band-Aid quickly and tell her straight out that he wasn’t going to move in with her.

But she stopped him cold with the lopsided quarter-grin that grabbed him every time. ‘Last night in town is usually pretty good,’ she said, and headed to the bedroom, grazing the back of his neck with her fingertips as she passed.

He heard her start the shower. He knew he wouldn’t be able to tell her tonight. Not even if that meant the winds would pick up, the fire would jump the retardant line, and his woods would be imperiled all over again.

Maybe this time it would be the sex that burned it all down.

***

Excerpt from Pay or Play by Howard Michael Gould. Copyright 2021 by Howard Michael Gould. Reproduced with permission from Howard Michael Gould. All rights reserved.

~~~

Author Bio:

Howard Michael Gould

Howard Michael Gould graduated from Amherst College and spent five years working on Madison Avenue, winning three Clios and numerous other awards.

In television, he was executive producer and head writer of CYBILL when it won the Golden Globe for Best Comedy Series, and held the same positions on THE JEFF FOXWORTHY SHOW and INSTANT MOM. Other TV credits include FM and HOME IMPROVEMENT.

He wrote and directed the feature film THE SIX WIVES OF HENRY LEFAY, starring Tim Allen, Elisha Cuthbert, Andie MacDowell and Jenna Elfman. Other feature credits include MR. 3000 and SHREK THE THIRD.

His play DIVA premiered at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and La Jolla Playhouse, and was subsequently published by Samuel French and performed around the country.

He is the author of three mystery novels featuring the minimalist detective Charlie Waldo: LAST LOOKS (2018) and BELOW THE LINE (2019), both nominated for Shamus Awards by the Private Eye Writers of America, and PAY OR PLAY (2021). The feature film version of LAST LOOKS, starring Charlie Hunnam and Mel Gibson and directed by Tim Kirkby, will premiere February, 2022; Gould also wrote the screenplay.

Catch Up With Howard Michael Gould: HowardMichaelGould.com

Goodreads

BookBub

Instagram – @howardmichaelgould

Twitter – @HowardMGould

Facebook – @HowardMGould

~~~

Tour Participants:

Visit these other great hosts on this tour for more great reviews, interviews, guest posts, and giveaways!

~~~

Join In:

This is a giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Howard Michael Gould. See the widget for entry terms and conditions. Void where prohibited.

E N T E R

~~~

Get More Great Reads at Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

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#BookReview “When the Children Return (Children of the Eye Book 2)” by Barry Kirwan

book cover

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5/5 stars!

I’ve looked forward to book two of the Children of the Eye series since January and When the Children Return didn’t disappoint.

A now-adult Sally leads the battle-ready group as the Athena returns to Earth to face the Axleth and reclaim their planet.

It will be easier said than done.

Even with the artificial intelligence Ares and his knowledge way beyond humanity’s imaginings, the fight will be daunting, perhaps even hopeless. Has Ares shared everything he knows with the humans? What does he know about the mysterious ship that attacked the Athena and is following them to Earth?

Doesn’t look as though the enemy of my enemy is my friend, but it will take battle, betrayal, and loss before the true enemy is identified.

Nathan, our hero from book one is back, still not feeling like a hero. Haunted by his service in Afghanistan, even the small victory of saving some of Earth’s children doesn’t change him. Things get even worse for him when Lara goes missing and is presumed dead. But never count him out. The survivors can make this planned assault on their home planet because he got them out the first time and he’ll rise to the occasion when needed.

Like Sally, many of the children who escaped are now adults, some with children of their own. But some have chosen to be augmented by Ares to assist with piloting the Athena, and now exist as something more than human.

However, like in book one, it is man’s humanity that to me is the dominant theme of When the Children Return. Our differences separate us. Our differences lead us to shun, hate, and violence. But Barry Kirwan’s science fiction adventure proves when we have a common enemy and goal, those differences are meaningless and fade away. (So why do we allow them to do so much damage at all?)

This fast-moving epic has several moments of ennui and regret, and sadness, but realistic characters and stellar writing not only lead to smooth transitions but also made this a one-sitting read for me.

Bittersweet, yet hopeful, the ending is open enough for book three, and I’m here for it!

Enjoy!

~~~

When it finally comes, we won’t even know what’s hit us.

Ten years have passed since the Axleth invaded Earth and a few hundred humans escaped aboard the ship Athena, piloted by the Artificial Intelligence who calls himself Ares. Now, the refugees approach Earth, determined to take back their home. But something has followed them from deep in space, and as war breaks out on Earth, humanity must decide who is the real enemy.

Praise for When the Children Return

A fantastic and original premise…flashes of Stephen King and MR Carey.Tom Witcomb

Kirwan lights the fuse on a new SF seriesaction-adventure and dark-edged SF that will enthrall readers.” Kirkus Reviews

★★★★★ Great story-telling. Intelligent, compelling, and told in a direct, easy-to-read style.” Susan Yea

★★★★★ “The writing is even and solid throughout, with interesting, intelligent characters who fight against horrific odds with every advantage and resource they can muster. I‘m getting the sequel as soon as it comes out!” Adrian B.

★★★★★ “A taut thriller, with a Lee Child feel to its staccato writing and strong action sequences, and a high concept stretching the novel into true science fiction territory.” Amanda Rutter.

★★★★★ “I’ve read and enjoyed first contact stories before, but the unique plot and realistic characters of When the Children Come make it a memorable book that goes on the re-read shelf. Felicia Denise

★★★★★ “Not just a page-turner – all in all a fabulous novel, which I was sad to finish.” Loulou Brown

★★★★★ “Kirwan’s writing really feels authentic. His knowledge is clearly well-researched, and the themes of this novel felt real. I absolutely loved the vivid descriptions, the characters (Sally is awesome), the struggles. Everything felt real. I was on the edge of my seat!” Jessica Belmont

Kindle Unlimited

99c at time of posting!

Amazon US

Amazon UK

~~~

big tour banner

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#BookTour “When the Children Return (Children of the Eye Book 2)” by Barry Kirwan

tour banner

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book cover

~~~

When it finally comes, we won’t even know what’s hit us.

Ten years have passed since the Axleth invaded Earth and a few hundred humans escaped aboard the ship Athena, piloted by the Artificial Intelligence who calls himself Ares. Now, the refugees approach Earth, determined to take back their home. But something has followed them from deep in space, and as war breaks out on Earth, humanity must decide who is the real enemy.

Praise for Barry Kirwan…

A fantastic and original premise…flashes of Stephen King and MR Carey.Tom Witcomb

Kirwan lights the fuse on a new SF seriesaction-adventure and dark-edged SF that will enthrall readers.” Kirkus Reviews

★★★★★ Great story-telling. Intelligent, compelling, and told in a direct, easy-to-read style.” Susan Yea

★★★★★ “The writing is even and solid throughout, with interesting, intelligent characters who fight against horrific odds with every advantage and resource they can muster. I‘m getting the sequel as soon as it comes out!” Adrian B.

★★★★★ “A taut thriller, with a Lee Child feel to its staccato writing and strong action sequences, and a high concept stretching the novel into true science fiction territory.” Amanda Rutter.

★★★★★ “I’ve read and enjoyed first contact stories before, but the unique plot and realistic characters of When the Children Come make it a memorable book that goes on the re-read shelf. Felicia Denise

★★★★★ “Not just a page-turner – all in all a fabulous novel, which I was sad to finish.” Loulou Brown

★★★★★ “Kirwan’s writing really feels authentic. His knowledge is clearly well-researched, and the themes of this novel felt real. I absolutely loved the vivid descriptions, the characters (Sally is awesome), the struggles. Everything felt real. I was on the edge of my seat!” Jessica Belmont

Amazon US

Amazon UK

~~~

Author Bio JF Kirwan

I grew up in Farnborough, England, home to the fast-jet Red Arrows, and started writing when still at school, a weekly satirical thriller called the Adventures of Blackie the Cat for my classmates. I then got hooked on academic writing for my day job (preventing disasters in nuclear power plants, oil rigs and aircraft) and published four text books on human error. It wasn’t until I moved to Paris that I started writing fiction again, with the Eden Paradox released in 2011. It was intended to be a one-off, but I got a lot of fans demanding more, and so it went ‘epic’, a space opera of four books.

After an accident with my back and two subsequent operations, I was laid up for a long while and couldn’t scuba dive – my other passion – so I wrote a thriller about a spy who was also a scuba diver, and the Nadia Laksheva series was (to my amazement at the time) snapped up by HarperCollins. They asked me to use a pseudonym, which is where the initials J F came from, borrowed from my late father, who loved thrillers.

Although I keep my work and fiction separate (some of my colleagues aren’t convinced) the fiction is always influenced by my psychological training, and an unending fascination with how the mind works, and how it can go off the rails. This most clearly comes out in my two new series, Greg Adams (The Dead Tell Lies) and Children of the Eye (When the Children Come).

My favourite scifi authors range from Asimov and Clarke, to Brin, McDevitt, Hamilton, Asher and Reynolds. My favourite thriller writers are Baldacci, Child and Nesbo. My favourite moment as an author is when I’m sitting with my laptop with an espresso macchiato, wondering what comes next in a story, when suddenly it arrives, and I can’t type fast enough.

Social Media Links

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#ReleaseBlitz “Ninety-Five” by Lisa Towles

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Crime Thriller

 

Date Published: November 24, 2021

Publisher: Indies United Publishing House

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Running away is what Zak Skinner does best, and he’s just done it again, having transferred from NYU to University of Chicago. His fresh start goes south when he accidentally uncovers evidence of an on-campus, organized crime scam involving drugging students, getting them to commit crimes on camera, and blackmailing them to continue under the threat of expulsion. Digging deeper, Zak discovers that the university scam is just the tip of the iceberg, connected to a broader ring of crimes linked to a darkweb underworld. Following clues proves too dangerous. They know, they’re watching him. But he’s in too deep now to turn back. Zak is led to a compound within Chicago’s abandoned Steelworker Park, only to discover that he’s being hunted. Following the path toward the truth transforms him from a nerdy academic to a rabid activist hell-bent on exposing the most elaborate and expensive scam on the US economy and its unsuspecting victims. While trying to find a way out alive, Zak discovers there’s something much more personal he’s been running from – his past. And now there’s nowhere to hide.

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About the Author

Lisa Towles has 6 mystery/thrillers in print. Her 2019 thriller, The Unseen, was a Finalist in the Thriller category of the Best Book Awards by American Book Fest and her 2017 thriller Choke won a 2017 IPPY and a 2018 NYC Big Book Award for Thriller. Lisa’s published books include The Unseen, Choke, and the following titles published under her previous name, Lisa Polisar: The Ghost of Mary Prairie, Escape, Blackwater Tango, and Knee Deep. She is an active member and frequent Panelist/Speaker of Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and International Thriller Writers. She has an MBA in IT Management and works full-time in the tech industry in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lisa is a graphic designer and video creator, with a passion for supporting other authors.

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Purchase Links

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RABT Book Tours & PR

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#Featured “The Girl Who Ran Away (The Girl Who Ran Trilogy Book 1)” by Susan Lund

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A new missing persons case, a prime suspect and questions about an old friend challenge amateur sleuth and crime reporter Tess McClintock and FBI Special Agent Michael Carter in THE GIRL WHO RAN AWAY, the first book in The Girl Who Ran trilogy and another installment in the McClintock-Carter Crime Thriller Series.

Book Two, The Next Girl, will be released Summer 2019.

While Tess McClintock finishes writing her articles about Eugene Kincaid for the Seattle Sentinel, the girlfriend and daughter of an old college friend go missing. When their car turns up abandoned on a remote logging road in the mountains, Tess’s friend becomes the prime suspect.

Tess enlists FBI Special Agent Michael Carter to help her discover whether her old friend is responsible for their disappearance.

Amazon

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#FREE “The Grand Tour: Four International Mysteries” by Michaela Thompson

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ADVENTURE TRAVEL IN AN ARMCHAIR … AT AN UNBEATABLE PRICE!

Armchair travelers who happen to love cozy puzzlers won’t be able to resist this deal. Four of Michaela Thompson’s delightful international mystery novels—set in France, Italy, and India—each featuring bright and funny leading ladies, are on sale as a box set.

Take the grand tour! Cuddle up and enjoy these exotic and thrilling adventures one after the other.

MAGIC MIRROR

SACRE BLEU! THEY KILLED A MAN FOR A MIRROR!

Florida transplant Georgia Lee Maxwell doesn’t take to Paris at first, despite the fact that she’s at least leaving a no-good man and a hated job as a society editor. Now she’s a Paris correspondent, thank you very much—a dream come true for any journalist.

There’s just a slight down side—she arrives in freezing rain, gets caught in a traffic jam caused by a bomb scare, and hates her apartment; but the real Bonjour is finding herself face down on a museum floor during a robbery. Three terrifying masked gunmen shoot the unfortunate security guard and make off with only a mirror. Does it have some prophetic ability? Does someone know something the gendarmes don’t? Here’s what Georgia Lee knows: If she finds out first, she’s a journalistic hero. If she doesn’t, she’s dead.

A TEMPORARY GHOST

A GHOST-WRITING GIG IN PROVENCE–SHE’S LIVING THE DREAM! UNTIL THE KILLING STARTS…

In journalist Georgia Lee Maxwell’s second adventure, she leaves her new home in Paris for Provence, where she’s been offered a lucrative ghost-writing job. But her co-author, suspected murderess Vivien Howard, the widow of a wealthy New York financier, seems strangely uninterested in writing her memoir Vivian was widely believed to have murdered her husband but was never charged with the crime, and now she promises to tell all.

Amid the beauties of Provence, settled in, a charming renovated farmhouse, Georgia Lee finds a household full of ill-feeling, not to mention suspicious characters. Frustrated by Vivien’s lack of cooperation and unnerved by threatening letters, Georgia Lee soon realizes that she has become a player in a more dangerous game than she could have imagined. And then there’s another murder.

VENETIAN MASK

AT CARNIVAL IN THE FLOATING CITY—AN ARTLESS YOUNG AMERICAN, A MYSTERIOUS MASKED COUNT, AND MURDER

The surreal splendor of Venice glitters and mesmerizes as six so-called friends who, it turns out, barely know each other meet at Carnival to play a malignant game that quickly turns murderous. Sally, the “Tallahassee lassie” spurned by the rest as a virtual hayseed, is swept up by a mysterious count, attending masked balls, operas, and Carnival revels even as she mourns her marriage and dodges a deadly pursuer. “Things should happen at Carnival,” says her unlikely protector, who resembles Harlequin in more than his costume. “If they go on just the same, there’s no reason for Carnival at all.” There’s absolutely no chance of that in this psychological tour de force of surging identities wrestling to emerge in people forced by violence to confront their inner Harlequins and Medusas.

FAULT TREE

HELLO, IT’S YOUR PAST CALLING…

“Placing blame” thinks Marina Robinson, “is my life’s work. And why?” There’s a lot in her past to account for—nightmares and terrors, crimes and betrayals that happened half a world away, ten years go. Now she’s an engineer with a great job. She’s a failure analyst, an investigator who figures out what causes accidents, and she’s working on her most fascinating case—the fatal crash of a roller coaster–when suddenly the phone rings. And her world tilts…

#FREE at time of posting!

(check price before downloading)

Kindle Unlimited

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#PreOrder “The Red, the Fed and the Dead (A Kat Kelly Mystery Book 2)” by Tess Rafferty

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“Marriage can be the death of you…”

So thinks Kat Kelly when she agrees to her husband Mike’s plan to return to Italy during the rainy season. Fortunately, they have plenty of red wine to take the chill off. After two days in the damp city of Bologna, known for its food, its university and its communist tendencies—a.k.a.“The red, the fed & the learned” —the couple meet up with friends Sunny and Nino at a Medieval castle in the Emilia-Romagna countryside. There they discover the acetaias that produce the thirty-year-old extra Vecchio balsamic vinegar; the dairies that make the world-famous Parmesan Reggiano; and, of course, more than one dead body.

So once again, Kat and Sunny go hunting for clues while also hunting for truffles, with an international cast of suspects that includes a Ghanaian-Italian professor; a Canadian food consultant with mysterious ties to the castle; an American tech millionaire-turned-winemaker; and two feuding Michelin-starred chefs who just happen to be brothers. Kat’s insatiable appetite for both food and answers leads her to uncover an old mystery that travels all the way back to the German occupation and the American Buffalo soldiers who liberated Italy, and to the economic boom and pop music explosion of the fifties and sixties.

Releases November 1st!

Kindle Unlimited

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#FREE “Some People Deserve To Die” by Colin Knight

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Sixteen years old, naïve and trusting, Alan is tricked in to committing a terrible crime.Unable to face his family, he ran. But he could not outrun his guilt.From his home in Canada to the idyllic South Pacific, to the frigid waters of the North Sea, to the heat and corruption of Western Africa, Alan kept on running.To survive, Alan made the wrong kind of friends, learned deadly skills, and developed bad habits.Bruised and battered by life, Alan returns home to discover the truth about his crime, his family and himself.But is the truth more painful and unbearable than the lie?More importantly, who deserves to die?

FREE for a limited time!

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Amazon

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