Writing on the Rocks

Join me as I review and interview the brightest stars in Independent publishing. Whether they are self published or published through a small publisher, these writers have the talent, voice and know how to carve a spot for themselves amongst the literary gods.

Interview with Headhunters author Charlie Cole

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

 

Good afternoon, friends! I have a very special friend joining me in the bar today! Mr. Charlie Cole has bellied up to the bar to talk about his debut novel, Headhunters. But I have to say the best part of this interview, besides the company of good friends, is the dark stout with its frothy head peaking just above the rim of the 20-ounce tulip pint glass… sigh Sorry, I get a little dreamy when it comes to my Guinness. That’s right, ladies and gents, one of the reasons I like Charlie so much is because he understands that when it comes to beer, Guinness is second to none. So, pull up a bar stool, grab a pint and enjoy the conversation!

 

KD: Where did the inspiration for Headhunters come from?

CC: I’ve been a professional headhunter recruiting talent for big companies for the past 15 years. That part was easy. That’s the day job. But before that I was a licensed private investigator and it always interested me how those lines could blur. I mean in both jobs I was paid to find information that wasn’t readily available. As a headhunter, I collected competitive intelligence on other companies. (more…)

Review of Headhunters by Charlie Cole

Tuesday, December 20th, 2011

In Charlie Cole’s Headhunters, Simon Parks is one of the best headhunters at Blackthorn, an antiterrorist cell operating outside the confines of the US government. But after losing his wife in a tragic car accident Simon relocates his family in hopes of leaving behind the spy game and focusing his attention on his two children. Only what Simon doesn’t realize is that no matter how far away he runs he is forever tied to his past; a past that doesn’t want to let him go.

From page one, Cole immerses his readers into a fast paced thriller where he orchestrates the twists and turns of a thriller suspense with fluid ease and expertise. Cole’s tone and voice in the story is one of a seasoned writer and belies the fact that this is his debut novel. (more…)

Interview with Reveal author Brina Courtney

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Hello friends!! Well, its been sometime but the bar is officially back up and running!  Today I’m super excited to be hanging out with Brina Courtney, author of the YA novel, Reveal. Why am I super excited, you ask? Not only is Brina a talented writer and friend but my knowledge of Brina goes way beyond the Twitteverse. It just so happens that I graduated high school with her sister AND I can remember playing over at their house when we were little. :) I’m so lucky. So, grab a nice hot cup of hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and join us as we catch up.

KD:  I’m cruising the ebook aisles and I come across your book. In four sentences or less tell me why I should pick up this book. (Offering me money, fame or a tall, dark and handsome stranger will not sway my judgement but would be a wonderful side benefit.) ;)

BC: This is a story based on something or someone you’ve never even heard of. Read it to find out why a girl with a missing father can communicate with ghosts. Learn who set fire to an orphanage, maliciously burning the children inside. Enter the world of cryptids and never go back. (more…)

Review: Bone Wires by Michael Shean

Saturday, December 10th, 2011

Bone Wires written by Michael Shean is described as a “dark, brooding, cyberpunk noir” and is currently a running serial released every Thursday on Curiosity Quills. When the government ran the police force, the position of Homicide Detective warranted respect and recognition. However, in a time when private companies own the force the once honored position has become nothing more than a dead end job likened to janitorial service.

Detective Daniel Gray, of Homicide Solutions, knows that to get ahead in the company he has to be more business man than cop and that means doing whatever makes the company, Civic Protection, look the best. However, when someone from the company is found with his back splayed open like a fish with his spine removed Gray realizes that what’s best for the company may not be what’s best for the case.

I am thoroughly enjoying this serial; the characters, a main focus of mine, are strong, accessible and complex. I like the intricacies of the different perspectives of police work between Gray and his sometime partner Brutus Carter. Gray is a cop driven to work his way up the police corporate ladder and Carter, a cop who was once on the Seattle Police Department before the corporate take over, cares more about the case than the business side of things. (more…)

New Reviews

Monday, October 3rd, 2011

Hey everyone!

I have some new reviews up on the review site Writing on the Rocks! Check them out:

 Asylum Lake by R.A. Evans Writong on the Rocks issue 1

 

Gabriel’s Redemption by Steve Umstead Writing on the Rocks issue 2

 

Ties That Bind by Carolyn Arnold Writing on the Rocks issue 6

 

Gabriel’s Return by Steve Umstead Writing on the Rocks issue 10

 

Riversong by Tess Hardwick Writing on the Rocks issue 11 

 

The Camera Guy by R.W. Goodship Writing on the Rocks issue 12

 

Gabriel’s Redemption by Steve Umstead

Monday, March 21st, 2011

When writers write to be published they usually have a specific audience in mind. A contemporary romance author probably isn’t thinking of what a reader generally prone to fantasy will think of her novel. However, I feel that one of the greatest compliments an author can receive is when someone outside of their targeted audience picks up their book and loves it.

This is the compliment I give to Gabriel’s Redemption (Evan Gabriel) author, Steve Umstead.

I am not a science fiction person, at all. My father loved Star Trek and Star Wars; if it was sci-fi and techy my dad was there and I was in the other room rolling my eyes. Sparky, my husband, has an affinity for it as well. I’ve resigned myself to the fact that it will be a part of my entertainment selection when my husband or father is involved.

Imagine my surprise when I picked up this novel and couldn’t put it down.

From the very beginning Umstead captured my imagination and interest with reachable, likable, yet mysterious characters. I have to admit, since I’m not a regular sci-fi reader that it took my brain several chapters to understand the technology that was being introduced. That’s not to say that Umstead was clumsy or sparse with details, far from it.

In fact the way Umstead introduced his readers to the technology in the book was one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Instead of stopping the flow of the story to introduce or explain how every new technical device worked, he just incorporated its uses into the dialogue and narration. It was very easy to understand the function and use of a weapon or gadget based on how it was used and the reaction it caused. To me it was smart writing and didn’t make me feel like an idiot that had to have every single thing explained to her.

From the first page I was captivated by the former North American Federation Naval Commander Evan Gabriel’s story. The flashbacks to his youth were excellent in setting up the character and aided in his growth over the course of the book. The members in his team were made real by their little quirks or habits which added humor to the story.

If you don’t normally read science fiction, or if you’re like me and never read it, read this book. You’ll like it. If you read science fiction you’ll most likely love it.

In the end, I think my favorite part was what I noticed on the cover. “Book 1 of the Evan Gabriel Triology.” I’ll be anxiously awaiting the other two, Steve!

Jessica Z by Shawn Klomparens

Monday, March 14th, 2011

 

Twitter is an amazing thing. Just last week I spoke to author Shawn Klomparens and at first it was nothing special. Just “hey, you’re a writer, how’s it going?” But then we started talking about his books, his characters. As a new writer trying to find her place in this industry it was awesome to actually talk with someone who has gone through it all, and is still going through it.

As usual when I follow someone on Twitter I looked up websites, blogs, anything to learn about who I’m following.  After talking to him for a bit, I looked him up on Amazon and found his two books.  He seemed like an interesting guy, so I thought, why not? I downloaded his first book, Jessica Z and started reading and didn’t stop until it was done.

I was completely captivated by the character of Jessica and the relationships that she was involved in. I wished that I had a close sister like Katie to share my secrets with or have an outspoken friend like Gretchen to laugh at things with.  Heaven knows I would have loved to have to the prospective love interests of Patrick and Josh and remember I’m happily married, so what does that tell you? ;)

Jessica was easily accessible to me and I’m not just saying that because we both have red hair. Her indecisions and insecurities are ones that almost every woman faces in her day to day life.

Does the guy upstairs like me? Should I quit my comfortable job and take a risk with a friend? Is my new boyfriend a terrorist?

Ok, maybe not that last one, but let me tell you, the twists and turns this story took at the end had me reeling…in a good way. Its one of the reasons why I couldn’t put it down.

I found myself laughing, crying and cursing, which, if you follow me on my other blog, you know that those elements all make up a great story in my mind.

So, if you have some time, check the book out. Not only is it a great read, but the author is pretty cool. And he drinks Scotch, so you know, that right there should say it all.

 

Black Dagger Brotherhood by JR Ward

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

Holy Crap! So I just finished the third in the series and I am completely hooked, have been from about chapter 2 of the first book. It’s pointless for me to sit here and write about how much I love this paranormal romance series so I’m just going to list the books in order and tell you that if you like vampires, sex, action, complicated characters, sex (did I mention that one already?) reoccurring characters throughout the series then you’ll want to get your hands on this series.

Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 1) Lover Eternal (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 2) Lover Awakened (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 3) Lover Revealed: A Novel of the Black Dagger Brotherhood Lover Unbound (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 5) Lover Enshrined (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 6) Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 7) Lover Mine: A Novel of the Black Dagger Brotherhood Lover Unleashed (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 9)

Father Mine: Zsadist and Bella’s Story: A Black Dagger Brotherhood Novella

The Black Dagger Brotherhood: An Insider’s Guide

Dark Lover (A Black Dagger Brotherhood Novel) by: JR Ward

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

This week I’ll be starting the Black Dagger Brotherhood series by JR Ward. The first book in the series is Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book 1). (more…)