Where it Hurts, by Reed Farrel Coleman

Where it Hurts CoverNew York Times bestselling author Reed Farrel Coleman joins us in this episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss his new book, the first in his Gus Murphy series, WHERE IT HURTS.

Show Notes for Reed Farrel Coleman Interview

Reed shares the story behind WHERE IT HURTS and how a real-life scandal provided an inspiration for the story while he was creating the character of Gus Murphy for the new series.

Reed enjoys taking the conceits and tropes of private eye fiction and turning them on their ear, which is exactly what he’s done with the character of Gus Murphy.

We discuss the character of Tommy Delcamino, who spends little time “on screen” in WHERE IT HURTS, but plays a pivotal role in the story.  “I don’t believe in minor characters in my stories,” was Reed’s response when I asked him about Tommy.

Reed has two other series characters that he’s created, as well as taking over the Jesse Stone franchise from the estate of the legendary Robert Parker. We discuss each series.

There is an audiobook version of WHERE IT HURTS available for free with a Trial of the Audible.com service.

From the Publisher:

Reed Farrel ColemanGus Murphy thought he had the world all figured out. A retired Suffolk County cop, Gus had everything a man could want: a great marriage, two kids, a nice house, and the rest of his life ahead of him. But when tragedy strikes, his life is thrown into complete disarray. In the course of a single deadly moment, his family is blown apart and he is transformed from a man who believes he understands everything into a man who understands nothing.

Divorced and working as a courtesy van driver for the run-down hotel in which he has a room, Gus has settled into a mindless, soulless routine that barely keeps his grief at arm’s length. But Gus’s comfortable waking trance comes to an end when ex-con Tommy Delcamino asks him for help. Four months earlier, Tommy’s son T.J.’s battered body was discovered in a wooded lot, yet the Suffolk County PD doesn’t seem interested in pursuing the killers. In desperation, Tommy seeks out the only cop he ever trusted—Gus Murphy.

Gus reluctantly agrees to see what he can uncover. As he begins to sweep away the layers of dust that have collected over the case during the intervening months, Gus finds that Tommy was telling the truth. It seems that everyone involved with the late T.J Delcamino—from his best friend, to a gang enforcer, to a mafia capo, and even the police—has something to hide, and all are willing to go to extreme lengths to keep it hidden. It’s a dangerous favor Gus has taken on as he claws his way back to take a place among the living, while searching through the sewers for a killer.

Links

Purchase WHERE IT HURTS at Amazon

Download the audiobook from Audible

Reed Farrel Coleman Author Website www.reedcoleman.com

 

Please note that Amazon links are affiliate links. You’ll pay the same price for anything you order, but CrimeFiction.FM will earn a small commission.

A Better Goodbye, by John Schulian

A Better Goodbye Cover by John SchulianAuthor, award-winning journalist and screenwriter John Schulian joins us in this episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss his debut crime novel, A BETTER GOODBYE.

Show Notes for John Schulian Interview

John shares some of the primary characters in his book, which include an ex-boxer, a massage girl, a washed up B-movie actor and thug. Then we discuss the book itself and why he chose this story as his first novel.

We discuss some of John’s favorites in the crime fiction genre and how those books kept him company during the days when he traveled around the country as a sports writer.

We discuss the long strange trip John’s manuscript took before being published by Tyrus Books. John shares some specific feedback he received from an editor who did not acquire the book, and how that feedback allowed him to create a much richer character in Nick Pafko.

John Schulian will do a reading at Vroman’s Book Store in Pasadena tonight (December 10th) and at the Kings English Book Store in Salt Lake City on January 15th.

The Interview transcript: A Better Goodbye, by John Schulian

Stephen: Welcome back to CrimeFiction.fm, where we bring the authors of today’s best books directly to you. I’m your host, Stephen Campbell, and I’m here with John Schulian, the author of the gritty noir novel “A Better Goodbye,” which was released last month. John, welcome.

John Schulian author photoJohn: It’s good to be here, Steve. Thanks for having me.

Stephen: It’s a pleasure to chat with you. I absolutely love this book and it’s that rare combination of literary and gritty crime. There aren’t enough of these novels written anymore, and I tend to think that books like these are the really good ones. And “A Better Goodbye” really falls solidly in that category.

So first, kudos to you for a fantastic book. Now, let’s talk a bit about the storyline to give the listeners a little sense of what the book is about.

John: It’s about two lost souls, I think two people who would qualify as lost souls. One is Nick Pafko, who was a boxer. Ten years earlier, he killed a man in the ring and it derailed his career. And when we meet him, he’s been laid off as a baggage handler at Los Angeles Airport, and he’s just drifting, taking odd jobs. One of the jobs he winds up taking is providing security in a high-rise apartment building, where he watches over the flock at a sensual massage operation.

One of the girls who works there is Jenny Yee, who’s an Asian girl who’s working her way through college in the sex trade and is kind of savvy and kind of naive, very, very bright, and isn’t, I think, really aware of the risks she puts herself at by working in the business. Until there’s an incident, we shall say, early in the book, and she runs into the aftermath of it, and that convinces her that she will only work in places where there’s security.

The person both Jenny and Nick work for is Scott Crandall, who was once the star of a TV show called “Stormy Weathers,” which was syndicated, non-primetime junk, as he likes to think of it. And now, his acting career is in the dumper, and he’s a pimp basically, to put it mildly. He, in his own way, I guess, is a loss, so he’s certainly pretty much friends with the one ally he has or thinks he has is Onus DuPree Jr., who is the son of a former big-league baseball player and a seriously bad guy, a sociopath, whose every move is violent, threatening, criminal. He was a lot of fun to write.

Stephen: It has to be a challenge because you’ve got these four distinct characters, as you’ve described them. All of them could be completely unsympathetic in lesser hands, but they were all just completely engaging characters. And when we would go from one perspective to another, there’s always that sense as a reader. It’s like, “Oh, I was trapped in this story and now I’m over here.”

But for me, in “A Better Goodbye,” it was like, “Okay, all right. Now, we get to find out what’s going with this person. How challenging was that to create these characters and do it in a way that the reader, I don’t know, not only has a sense of who they are but appreciates them for who they are. (more…)

The Silence of Stones, by Jeri Westerson

Silence of StonesAuthor Jeri Westerson joins us in this episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss her new book, the eighth in her Crispin Guest Medieval Noir Mystery series, THE SILENCE OF STONES.

Show Notes

Crispin Guest is in some ways a traditional hard-boiled private investigator set in a non-traditional setting. While many PIs are white nights, Crispin is an actual knight in 14th century England.

Jeri describes the style of the series as historically accurate noir mysteries. The series has been nominated for multiple awards in the mystery genre, but since she hasn’t (yet) won, Jeri refers to herself as the Susan Lucci of mystery authors.

Jeri shares the story of THE SILENCE OF STONES and uses the phrase “ticking sundial” to describe the pressure that Crispin is under to solve the case.

We discuss Jeri’s love of history, where it came from and why she’s specifically interested in England during the Middle Ages. She differentiates between historically accurate fiction and historical fantasy.

Jeri shares her long-term love affair with Geoffrey Chaucer and how that plays into her series.

From the Publisher:

Jeri Westerson_London, 1388. When the mythical Stone of Destiny disappears from the throne of England during mass in Westminster Abbey, the populace takes it as a sign to side with King Richard II’s rebellious barons. The last thing the king needs is for his authority to be put in question, especially after his army suffers a crushing defeat against a Scottish uprising.

Desperate, Richard calls in Crispin Guest to find the missing stone. And to ensure that he will do the deed, the king imprisons Jack Tucker and orders Crispin to find the stone before Parliament convenes in three days’ time – or Jack will hang for treason.

Links

Purchase THE SILENCE OF STONES at Amazon

Author’s Website www.jeriwesterson.com

Try the audiobook version of the first book in the series at Audible for free at Audible by signing up for a free trial.

Please note that Amazon links are affiliate links. You’ll pay the same price for anything you order, but CrimeFiction.FM will earn a small commission.

Vortex, by Paul D. Marks

Vortex, by Paul D. Marks September, 2015

Vortex, by Paul D. Marks
September 2015

Shamus Award-winning author Paul D. Marks joins us in this episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss his latest, a noir thriller titled VORTEX.

Show Notes

Paul shares his definition of noir in fiction.

Paul has worked in the film business and offers the movie Double Indemnity as an excellent example of a classic noir film.

We discuss the storyline of VORTEX.

Much of Paul’s writing features the city of Los Angeles, where he’s lived for most of his life. He explains why he enjoys featuring the city in his stories.

Paul has worked as a Script Doctor, polishing the scripts of others, and he writes his first drafts as a screenplay.

Paul shares the story of winning his Shamus Award for WHITE HEAT.

If you’re in Los Angeles on September 2nd, Paul will be one of several authors features at Noir Slam.

From the Publisher:

Paul D. MarksVortex is a mystery thriller about an Afghanistan war vet returning to his hometown of Los Angeles only to find he faces more danger at home than he did in the war.

Zach Tanner is on the run. He can run from the war, but he can’t run from himself.

Zach and his girlfriend, Jess, careen down Sunset Boulevard, trying to get away from a red Camaro that’s hot on their tale. But it’s hard to get away from your best friends, who think you’ve stolen their spoils of war.

Links

Purchase VORTEX at Amazon

Paul’s  website www.pauldmarks.com

Please note – Amazon links are affiliate links.  There is no difference in the price you pay for books, but a small commission will come to CrimeFiction.FM.

Day of The Destroyers, with Guest Gary Phillips

Day of the Destroyers by Garry Phillips Moonstone, April 2015

Day of the Destroyers
by Garry Phillips
Moonstone, April 2015

Author Gary Phillips joins us in this episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss his most recent project, an exciting Pulp novel he did with several other authors, DAY OF THE DESTROYERS.

Show Notes

Gary shares the story behind the book, which is based on a reported incident during the Roosevelt administration in the 1930s.

The book features Jimmy Flint, Agent X-11, who Gary describes as the super spy.

Gary describes the history of pulp fiction, which came to life about the time of this story. He mentions Lester Dent, who wrote the Doc Savage series.

Gary writes pulp, noir, screenplays and comic books. We discuss the differences he sees between writing comics and writing prose.

From the Publisher:

Gary photo

Based on a real historical event during the Roosevelt administration! Guest starring pulp heroes The Green Lama, The Phantom Detective, and The Black Bat! Day of the Destroyers is an all-original, linked-prose anthology; each story is part of a larger arc wherein Jimmie Flint, Secret Agent X-11 of the Intelligence Service Command, battles to prevent the seditionist Medusa Council from engineering a bloody coup overthrowing our democracy.

Written by pulp fictioneers Ron Fortier, Adam Lance Garcia, Gary Phillips, Paul Bishop, Jeri Westerson, Eric Fein, Tommy Hancock, Aaron Shaps, Joe Gentile.Links, and Gary Phillips who also conceived and edited the book.

Purchase DAY OF THE DESTROYERS at Amazon

Gary’s website www.gdphillips.com

 

Murder Boy, by Bryon Quertermous

Murder Boy CoverBryon Quertermous joins us in the episode of CrimeFiction.FM to discuss his debut novel, MURDER BOY.

Show Notes

Bryon shares the storyline for Murder Boy.

Laura Lippman calls Murder Boy, “Disturbing in a good way,” and “A black comedy with heart.”

Bryon shares a funny story about the publication process for the book.

Bryon shares the story of the first copy of Murder Boy he signed, at a bookstore, for one of his writing heroes.

From the Publisher

Bryon QuertermousDominick Prince is out of options. He’s lived in Detroit long enough to use his experiences of crime and poverty to fuel his writing, but he’s ready to move on to bigger and better things. Dominick’s thesis advisor, the elitist Parker Farmington, refuses to let Dominick pass his class, thinking the genre of potboilers beneath him. Which means rather than becoming the next literary sensation, Dominick will spend his life asking customers if they’d like fries with that. And if that’s the only plan, kidnapping doesn’t seem like such a bad plan B.

So if Farmington won’t pass him willfully, Dominick will make him do it forcefully. And once he has Farmington’s signature, fame and fortune are within Dominick’s grasp. But while Dominick may have a devious and brilliant mind on the page, in reality he’s more Betty White than Walter White. And before he can write ’the plot thickens,’ Dominick’s plan begins to go horribly wrong. Teaming with Farmington’s jilted mistress and her loose-cannon bounty hunter brother, Dominick finds that if even the best laid plans go awry, then his doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in hell. And being a great writer won’t matter much if he’s six feet under.

Links

Purchase MURDER BOY at Amazon

Bryon’s website www.bryonquertermous.com

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