Excerpt from Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I had heard a lot of good things about Neil Gaiman’s books; I knew they were hugely popular. But I had never read any of his work before. So when I saw Neverwhere, I decided to pick it up and give it a go. It is a slow start, and I just about gave up on it before things started to get interesting, but I was sure it had to pick up, and it did! What can I compare Neverwhere to? Tim Burton meets Inkheart and Monty Python? That might about cover it! Here is my teaser:

He’s a little bit dodgy in the same way that rats are a little bit covered in fur.

Neil Gaiman, Neverwhere

Neverwhere is the story of Richard Mayhew, a young London businessman with a good heart and an ordinary life, which is changed forever when he discovers a girl bleeding on the sidewalk. He stops to help her—an act of kindness that plunges him into a world he never dreamed existed.

Slipping through the cracks of reality, Richard lands in the Neverwhere—a London of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, murderers and angels that exists entirely in a subterranean labyrinth. The Neverwhere is home to Door, the mysterious girl Richard helped in the London Above. Door, a noblewoman whose family has been murdered, is on a quest to find the agent that slaughtered her family and thwart the destruction of this underworld kingdom. If Richard is ever to return to his former life, he must join the journey to save Door’s world—and find a way to survive.

Excerpt from Finders Keepers

I am finished my Camp Nano project with the first draft of the third book of my upcoming cozy mystery series. Here’s a little sneak peak:

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

My current read is Finders Keepers by Belinda Bauer (there are, as it happens, a number of other books entitled Finders Keepers, so make sure you’re looking at the right one. A rash of kidnappings baffle the townspeople, media, and police. Multiple viewpoints converge to bring you closer to the kidnapper’s identity, and then you’re left wondering how the police are going to catch him. All of the right ingredients for a good thriller! Here is my teaser:

Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Jonas knew the stages of grief by now. He knew them backwards. He could juggle them like plates. It didn’t mean he knew how they felt.

Belinda Bauer, Finders Keepers

Finders Keepers is a spine-tingling, edge-of-your-seat thriller about an alarming spree of kidnappings in the southwest of England. The eight-year-old boy had vanished from the car and—as if by slick, sick magic—had been replaced by a note on the steering wheel: “You don’t love him.” At the height of summer a dark shadow falls across Exmoor, as children begin to disappear, with each disappearance marked only by a terse, accusatory note. There are no explanations, no ransom demands, and no hope. Policeman Jonas Holly (a character returning from Bauer’s first two novels) faces a precarious journey into the warped mind of the kidnapper if he’s to stand any chance of catching him. But—still reeling from a personal tragedy—is Jonas really up to the task? There are some who would say that, when it comes to being the first line of defense, Jonas Holly may be the last man to trust.

Excerpt from Allegiant by Veronica Roth

Things are really hopping around here for Easter! I have two sales on, with The Life of Our Lord, by Charles Dickens and Enemy of Light, a collection of four or my suspense books, both on for $0.99 for a limited time, as well as a contest to win 16 ebooks about new beginnings.  Stock up now!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

It has been a couple of years since I read Veronica Roth’s Divergent, and I have finally gotten around to reading the rest of the series, Insurgent and Allegiant. Today’s quote is from Allegiant, the last book in the trilogy. I have just started it recently, and I’m interested to see where the plot is going to go. Things are just beginning to get interesting…

I didn’t know that idiocy caused people to just start spontaneously bleeding from the nose.

Veronica Roth, Allegiant

What if your whole world was a lie? What if a single revelation—like a single choice—changed everything? What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?

The explosive conclusion to Veronica Roth’s #1 New York Times bestselling Divergent trilogy reveals the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.

Excerpt from Command Authority

It’s April, and that means I’ve started work on a new book. I am working on book three in my new cozy mystery series. 10,000 words and counting!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I’ve just started on another Tom Clancy/Mark Greaney book in the Jack Ryan series, Command Authority. Like all Jack Ryans, it is raw, fast paced, with a complex political background and lots of historical interest. And of course, if you are familiar with the series, the characters are as familiar as family members. As a warning, I do think this one has a few more f-bomb in it than previous books…

I might not see the iceberg in our path, but when those in charge are looking for the … lifeboat, I’m smart enough to pay attention.

Tom Clancy & Mark Greaney, Command Authority

Decades ago, as a young CIA analyst, President Jack Ryan Sr. was sent out to investigate the death of an operative—only to uncover the existence of a KGB assassin codenamed Zenith. He was never able to find the killer…

In the present, a new strongman has emerged in the ever-chaotic Russian republic—the enigmatic President Valeri Volodon. But the foundations of his personal empire are built on a bloody secret from his past. And none who know of it have lived to tell. For he has set a plot in motion—a plot to return Russia to its former glory.

But when a family friend of Ryan’s is poisoned by a radioactive agent, the trail leads to Russia. And Jack Ryan Jr.—aided by his compatriots John Clark and the covert warriors of the secretive Campus—must delve into an international conflict thirty years in the making, and finish what his father started.

With President Ryan fighting the political battle of his life, and his son fighting a silent war against a ruthless foe, global conflict becomes imminent—and the possibility of survival may soon be lost for all…

Excerpt from The Beautiful Mystery

Making Her Mark was released recently. Have a look at it, and some other great new releases too.

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I have posted about the Inspector Gamache series before. It’s fun reading well-written mysteries that are based in Canada and around Canadian Culture. Louise Penny does not disappoint with The Beautiful Mystery, a murder mystery set in a fictional monastery in the wilds of Quebec.

A throat cleared.

In the great silence it sounded like a bomb. And to the abbot’s ears it sounded like what it was.

A challenge.

Louise Penny, The Beautiful Mystery

No outsiders are ever admitted to the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups, hidden deep in the wilderness of Quebec, where two dozen cloistered monks live in peace and prayer. They grow vegetables, they tend chickens, they make chocolate. And they sing. Ironically, for a community that has taken a vow of silence, the monks have become world-famous for their glorious voices, raised in ancient chants whose effect on both singer and listener is so profound it is known as “the beautiful mystery.”

But when the renowned choir director is murdered, the lock on the monastery’s massive wooden door is drawn back to admit Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and Jean-Guy Beauvoir of the Sûreté du Québec. There they discover disquiet beneath the silence, discord in the apparent harmony. One of the brothers, in this life of prayer and contemplation, has been contemplating murder. As the peace of the monastery crumbles, Gamache is forced to confront some of his own demons, as well as those roaming the remote corridors. Before finding the killer, before restoring peace, the Chief must first consider the divine, the human, and the cracks in between.

Excerpt from Michael Connelly’s The Drop

Did you miss the new release of Making Her Mark on St. Paddy’s Day? There are lots of other new releases that might excite you as well, so drop in for a look.

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I am reading another Michael Connelly novel today, one of the Harry Bosch series, The Drop. The title is a clever double entendre (or triple). Bosch is investigating two cases, and I don’t know whether they are going to intersect or not. I am interested in seeing how it is all going to play out. As always, Michael Connelly keeps you on your toes!

“It came from a small smear of blood,” Shuler said. “It was found on her neck, right below the right ear. She had no wounds in that area. It was assumed that it had come from the killer, that he had been cut in the struggle or maybe was already bleeding. It was just a drop. A smear, really.”

James Connelly, The Drop

Harry Bosch has been given three years before he must retire from the LAPD, and he wants cases more fiercely than ever. In one morning, he gets two.

DNA from a 1989 rape and murder matches a 29-year-old convicted rapist. Was he an eight-year-old killer or has something gone terribly wrong in the new Regional Crime Lab? The latter possibility could compromise all of the lab’s DNA cases currently in court.

Then Bosch and his partner are called to a death scene fraught with internal politics. Councilman Irvin Irving’s son jumped or was pushed from a window at the Chateau Marmont. Irving, Bosch’s longtime nemesis, has demanded that Harry handle the investigation.

Relentlessly pursuing both cases, Bosch makes two chilling discoveries: a killer operating unknown in the city for as many as three decades, and a political conspiracy that goes back into the dark history of the police department.

Excerpt from Gone Again

I am publishing Making Her Mark later this week. Read a free preview here and sign up for the Goodreads Giveaway for chance to win a paperback copy.

I also finished the first draft of a new project yesterday. It’s a new kind of project for me, but I can’t tell you about it yet!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I am currently reading Gone Again by James Grippando, a legal thriller in which Jack Swyteck is trying to save a death row inmate from his imminent date with the electric chair. Dylan Reeves was convicted of killing a seventeen-year-old girl, but the mother of the victim doesn’t belief she is dead. I recognized almost immediately that RAD (Reactive Attachment Disorder) was going to play a big part in this book, which means that so far, I have anticipated all of the twists. But I am still enjoying it!

“No, you don’t understand. Sasha isn’t dead.”

Jack did a double take. “What?”

“My daughter is alive.”

“Where is she?”

“I don’t know. But Sashi is alive. I know she’s alive. And I need you people to help me prove it, before they execute this man for killing her.”

James Grippando, Gone Again

Sashi Burgette vanished three years ago on her way to school. The night after the teenager’s disappearance, ex-con Dylan Reeves was stopped for drunk driving.

An article of Sashi’s clothing was found in his truck, and a police videotape of his drunken explanation under interrogation sealed his fate at trial. Now, just days from Reeves’s execution, Sashi’s mother visits Jack Swyteck, doing pro bono work at the Freedom Institute, and delivers shocking news: “Sashi called me.”

The police dismiss the call as a cruel hoax. The State Attorney refuses to consider the new evidence, insisting the case is closed. An innocent man may be executed and time is running out—unless his lawyers can locate Sashi.

A man of principle who believes in justice, Jack jumps into the investigation. But nothing is what it appears to be. Not the victim. Not her alleged killer. And definitely not Sashi’s parents. As their gut-wrenching and hopelessly conflicting version of events unfolds in a Miami courtroom, it becomes clear there is something even more difficult to find than a long-missing girl . . .

The truth.

Excerpt from On Turpentine Lane

Don’t forget to check out all of the great deals on Smashwords’ World eBook Week!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I picked up On Turpentine Lane by Elinor Lipman on a whim, not having read anything by Lipman before, and knowing next to nothing about the book. While the description and the book begin with the description of mysterious artifacts in the attic, it is not a murder mystery, but a romantic comedy. Not one of my usual genres. It had me laughing out loud a number of times. Elinor Lipman is definitely an author I would read again, and the narrator of the audiobook captured her voice exactly.

I gave it some time—accepting the new, softer, vegetarian Stuart 2.0. When friends heard about his walk and asked me if he was a nonconformist or a nut, I told them that this was just a new lifelong goal, to find himself by crossing the country on foot, a sabbatical of sorts after his agency had closed its doors.

Elinor Lipman, On Turpentine Lane

At thirty-two, Faith Frankel has returned to her claustro-suburban hometown, where she writes institutional thank-you notes for her alma mater. It’s a peaceful life, really, and surely with her recent purchase of a sweet bungalow on Turpentine Lane her life is finally on track. Never mind that her fiancé is off on a crowdfunded cross-country walk, too busy to return her texts (but not too busy to post photos of himself with a different woman in every state). And never mind her witless boss, or a mother who lives too close, or a philandering father who thinks he’s Chagall.

When she finds some mysterious artifacts in the attic of her new home, she wonders whether anything in her life is as it seems. What good fortune, then, that Faith has found a friend in affable, collegial Nick Franconi, officemate par excellence…

Excerpt from Dan Brown’s Inferno

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

Have you read Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code or Angels and Demons? I’m currently reading Inferno, and it’s just as much code-breaking fun as his other books, these ones based around Dante’s Inferno and the art and literature surrounding it.

For Langdon, it felt as if a vital weapon had been extracted from his arsenal. I have no memory. Eidetic since childhood, Langdon’s memory was the intellectual asset he relied on most. For a man accustomed to recalling every intricate detail of what he saw around him, functioning without his memory felt like attempting to land a plan in the dark with no radar.

Dan Brown, Inferno

 

Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon awakens in an Italian hospital, disoriented and with no recollection of the past thirty-six hours, including the origin of the macabre object hidden in his belongings. With a relentless female assassin trailing them through Florence, he and his resourceful doctor, Sienna Brooks, are forced to flee. Embarking on a harrowing journey, they must unravel a series of codes, which are the work of a brilliant scientist whose obsession with the end of the world is matched only by his passion for one of the most influential masterpieces ever written, Dante Alighieri’s The Inferno.

Excerpt from Red Mist

It’s been a busy week since my last Teaser Tuesday. I finished the first draft of the second book in my new cozy mystery series. And I have started in on my new cowriting project in a female PI series.

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

It is still Mystery Thriller Week, and I’m also participating in the Booksweeps Contemporary Thriller contest (enter to get 50 books and a Kindle fire!) so here is a teaser from Red Mist, by Patricia Cornwell, part of the Kay Scarpetta series. I’ve read a few other books from the series. They are filled with complex relationships and interesting twists and turns:

“I see. When I think I can make a difference, I should never trust it.” I used a pair of surgical scissors to cut the shells of boiled jumbo prawns. “When I decide that taking a risk might produce useful information and help bring about justice, it’s really my feeling guilty.”

Patricia Cornwell, Red Mist

 

On her quest to find out exactly what happened to her former deputy chief, Jack Fielding, murdered six months before, Scarpetta drives to the Georgia Prison for Women to meet a convicted sex offender and the mother of a vicious and diabolically brilliant killer. Against the advice of her FBI criminal intelligence agent husband, Benton Wesley, Scarpetta is determined to hear this woman out.  

Scarpetta has both personal and professional reasons to learn more about a string of grisly killings: the murder of a Savannah family years earlier, a young woman on death row, and then other inexplicable deaths that begin to occur at a breathtaking pace. Driven by inner forces, Scarpetta discovers connections that compel her to conclude that what she thought ended with Fielding’s death and an attempt on her own life is only the beginning of something far more destructive: a terrifying terrain of conspiracy and potential terrorism on an international scale. 

And she is the only one who can stop it.