LOOKS THAT DECEIVE by Braxton DeGarmo ~ a review

Looks That Deceive

Steven James ~ Move over!

LOOKS THAT DECEIVE by Braxton DeGarmo is both edgy and gritty crime fiction and a seat of the pants medical thriller. ‘Edgy’ because it pushes the edge of the envelope. It could be categorized as noir.

Lync Cully, a workaholic, dedicated detective has been loaned to the Major Case Squad. He’s investigating a series of gruesome and bizarre assaults on women in the legal profession, an explosion killing a lawyer, and the torture and murder of another man. The “wonder boy” of the detective squad, he knows these crimes are related.

Amy Gibbs, Cully’s former  girlfriend, is a medivac nurse and part of the team transporting the torture victim by chopper to the emergency room. The horrifically injured man is able to mumble a few words about the killer to her and her partner before expiring. Cully wants to hold back this information from the public, but it gets out to the press, putting Amy squarely in the sights of this heinous killer.

The author uses plot construction often typical of thrillers. The reader is introduced to the highly intelligent and technologically advanced killer as “Lady Law,” a pseudonym the male predator uses online to lure females in the legal profession into his trap. He is adept in the use of aliases and ruse. The reader also becomes aware the killer has relationships with other characters in the story and they are none-the-wiser about his violent and depraved other life.

As it turns out in this deadly tale, looks can be deceiving. If you like unabashed, nail biting thrillers with an inspirational twist, this novel is for you.

HARMFUL INTENT ~ price reduction to $1.99

HARMFUL INTENT: action-packed detective novel with zany humor and a terrific love story will be permanently reduced in price to $1.99.

Why you might ask?

Well, the second novel in the Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels/Dawson Hughes detective series is about to release, titled DEADLY DESIGNS.

HI Price Reduction $1.99 PP

 Winner in the Grace Awards 2014 Mystery/Thriller/Romantic Suspense/Historical Suspense category.

Betrayal runs in private investigator Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels’ family. So, why is she surprised when her husband of one year cheats on her? The real shock is his murder, with the local lawman pegging her as the prime suspect.

Ronnie Ingels is a Brooklyn bred private investigator who travels to west Texas, where her cheating husband is murdered. As she hunts the killer to clear her name, she becomes the hunted.

Deputy Sergeant Dawson Hughes, a former Army Ranger, is a man folks want on their side. Only he’s not so sure at first, he’s on the meddling New York PI’s side. As the evidence points away from her, he realizes the more she butts in, the more danger she attracts to herself.

Harmful Intent: —Sweet, askance romance, warm intimacy, sophisticated themes presented tastefully.

SNEAK PEEK:  DEADLY DESIGNS cover reveal coming soon!!!

Goodbye Noel ~ if you’re into Christmas in July

Goodbye Noel

 

Many thrill to Christmas in July. If you’re one of those, my classic 1940s mystery novel GOODBYE NOEL would be the perfect read for you. Especially now that World War II and post WWII novels are the new Amish.

 

 

GA Winner 2011Historical Romantic Murder Mystery, set in the mid-1940s
—murder/mayhem/kidnap/romance
—Sweet romance, warm intimacy, sophisticated themes presented tastefully
—Won the 2011 Grace Awards Mystery/Thriller/Romantic Suspense/Historical Suspense category

 

The first body is found under a trimmed Christmas tree, the second as they ring in the New Year (1947), the third goes head long out a window. Will a young pediatric nurse determined to make it on her own be able to care for an infant whose mother was murdered and escape the killer who has struck again? Can she trust the stalwart village detective with her life and her heart as he works to catch this killer before somebody else dies?

Pediatric nurse, Katrina Lenart, grew up strong willed and independent minded, while sharing her mother’s flair for high fashion. When the police chief gives her an orphaned baby to care for, her maternal instincts take over and she’s willing to fight anyone who might not have the infant’s best interests at heart, even the man she’s growing to love. After an attempt is made to kidnap the baby, she and the resolute village detective team up and do some sleuthing, undercover at a cult as well as at a fancy ball.

Detective Ian Daltry is a widower with a child and is not interested in a new love. Hunting a killer who stops at nothing has placed him in the position where he must protect a beautiful young woman he’s drawn to. Is there’s something he’s overlooked in analyzing the case? Will he find out what that is before this ruthless murderer kills someone he loves?

GOODBYE NOEL on Amazon

 

HARMFUL INTENT NOW 99cents ~ FATHER’S DAY SALE

HI Meme 7
This meme is courtesy of author Tammy Doherty. Thx girl, for helping me out.

 

Happy Father’s Day to all dads, grandpas, step-dads, uncles, big brothers (the blood kind and those who volunteer),  foster fathers, and anyone who steps into the gap and takes on the role of dad.

In honor on Father’s Day HARMFUL INTENT will be on dale for 99 pennies until midnight Sunday, June 21st

 

Betrayal runs in private investigator Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels’ family. So, why is she surprised when her husband of one year cheats on her? The real shock is his murder, with the local lawman pegging her as the prime suspect.

Ronnie Ingels is a Brooklyn bred private investigator who travels to west Texas, where her cheating husband is murdered. As she hunts the killer to clear her name, she becomes the hunted.

Deputy Sergeant Dawson Hughes, a former Army Ranger, is a man folks want on their side. Only he’s not so sure at first, he’s on the meddling New York PI’s side. As the evidence points away from her, he realizes the more she butts in, the more danger she attracts to herself.

 

Grace Awards 2014 300px

 

 

Won the Grace Award 2014 in the Mystery/Thriller/Romantic Suspense/Historical Suspense category

 

You can purchase HARMFUL INTENT AT Amazon.

HARMFUL INTENT Wins in the Grace Awards 2014 ~ Mystery/Thriller/Romantic Suspense/Historical Suspense

Harmful Intent 300 P

I was thrilled and surprised to find my first contemporary detective novel HARMFUL INTENT had won this year’s Grace Award in the Mystery/Thriller/Romantic Suspense/Historical Suspense category. The competition was stiff. I was up against two fantastic authors who had tremendous support from their readers.

The Grace Awards are reader driven literary awards in faith-based fiction. Readers nominate the finalists and then a panel of judges picks the winner.

I was touched and blown away by what the judges had to say:

Grace Awards 2014 300px

Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller: crime fiction, there’s probably a body

HARMFUL INTENT by Nike Chillemi (Crime Fictionista Press)

From nearly the beginning of the story we knew we were into reading a potential award winner. Right off the bat, Nike Chillemi brings characters onto the scene that are real, with both strengths and weaknesses, and a plot that gets going right away. She has a real talent for spinning the “hard-boiled detective” kind of story. The fact that she takes her New York bred lady detective and lands her square in the outback of Texas adds real flavor to the tale. As the main character, Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels, learns about her murdered husband’s double life and unravels the mystery of his death, we are thrown along with her through a gamut of emotions — anger, resentment, sorrow, and the promise of closure. The story does not lag. Nike has a great “voice” — that magical thing writers long for — in storytelling. Her use of setting, language, pacing, and especially dialogue sparkles. Nike does a bang-up job of weaving a delicious tale of suspense and romance, catching the bad guy, and tying up all the loose ends, even while leading us into the promise of a sequel to come. Nike set the course for these characters’ continuing journey (personal and spiritual) and it will be interesting to see how their character arcs continue. Nicely done!

Writing A Detective Novel ~ The Rules

Investigation

 

 

As in life…some rules can safely be broken, others can’t. Determining which is which often demonstrates who is the proficient writer and who is not.

Quite a few of the rules for writing detective stories are similar to those for writing murder mysteries, suspense novels, and thrillers. Others are very different.

BASIC RULES:

1. The story must have a detective, or detective partners as its main character(s). These can be duly sworn police detectives, fire department arson investigators, licensed private investigators, FBI special agents, homeland security investigators and the like, or military police officers of high enough rank to be investigating crimes. They are law enforcement professionals on the case to solve a particular crime or series of crimes.

2. The story must have a victim or victims. Usually there is a dead body, preferably more than one. But the crime could be kidnap, or arson that did not result in murder, or perhaps eco-terrorism resulting in corpses or not. The crime could involve the brutalization or killing of animals (especially if the detective is a park ranger). Most often there is a human murder or murders.

3. The detective story is an intellectual game, much like solving a puzzle or playing chess. There are opponents in this game. The detective is pitted against the criminal. They must be equally matched for it to be a good game. Although the reader knows the detective is going to win, for it to be a compelling story,  it has to feel at times, as if the criminal might triumph over the detective. The criminal must be clever enough to inflict some mental, emotional, and/or physical damage on the detective(s).

4. The old axiom was that the criminal’s identity must be unknown to both the detective(s) and the reader until the very end. This is still largely true. If the criminal’s identity is know the story becomes suspense. Lately, there’s been some line blurring in this area. In the modern market place, many genres have blurry lines.

5. The criminal should be introduced early in the story, amidst a field of plausible red herrings.  There’s nothing worse than having the criminal sprung on the reader, out of the blue, at the last minute. There could be more than one culprit. So, secondary culprits can be introduced later. Still, it’s sort of cheating to wait till the very end even for those to be brought into the story line. Don’t want to give the reader a bait-and-switch feeling. Finding out who the killer is at the end ~ good. Introducing the killer at the end ~ bad idea.

6. The crime should also be introduced at the beginning. It’s been said within the first three chapters. The first chapter is best. Opening up in the very midst of it, helps grab the reader’s attention. The specific crime must fit the criminal’s psyche and personality, and he/she must have had the know-how and ability to commit said crime.

7. Supply plausible and understandable clues that both give hints as to the identity of the criminal, and also clues that point to others who are merely red herrings. Also leave clues as to the motive for the crime(s).

8. In days gone by, it was almost written in stone that the detective story is simply one of detecting, that no social issues must be brought into it and certainly no romance. This is no longer the case. Readers enjoy a detective protagonist with a social conscience, or definite lack thereof. It makes him/her more interesting. In the same way a love interest for the detective often gives her/him an Achilles’ heel which the crafty criminal can take advantage of. The Christian detective story must have inspirational or redemptive elements to it. However, in the detective sub-genre, the overwhelming majority of the plot must be about the protagonist detective(s) detecting and solving the crime(s), or else it’s not a detective story.

9. The crime must not be solved by super-natural or extraordinary means. The criminal can’t be caught via psychic powers, magic, assistance from ghosts, aliens from another planet, or the like. Those scenarios make the story speculative fiction, not a detective story. Although in today’s world, it’s entirely possible to have a spec fic detective story, but that book would not be shelved with detective stories in a book store. Then again, you might hit a bookstore where it would be. Go figure.

Murder

REVENGE by Paula Rose ~ an intriguing author interview

Revenge
Nike: I was first attracted by your title and cover. I think they speak to the contemporary murder mystery and romantic suspense environment. So then, I read a sample on Amazon and bought the Kindle copy of your book. Can you tell us how you chose your title and cover design?

Paula: My villain chose my story title as he steered the plot to a more sinister version of himself then I thought of originally. These characters almost wrote themselves into the story despite my best efforts of writing the story my way. In the end, it all worked but it’s clear the muse doesn’t always listen to me.

This amazing cover design was crafted by Laura Heritage from Anaiah Press!
Nike: Olivia Foster is totally dedicated to her autistic clients. I really like that about her personality. But she is a bit oblivious to the harsher realities of life and finds herself in mess. Can you tell us a bit about that without giving anything away?

Paula: In Revenge, the death of her brother led Olivia Foster into her career choice, but she is too focused on her job and its duties. You are correct in that she is oblivious to the harsher realities in life until they come hunt her down. Her education in fear is just beginning on page one of REVENGE.
Nike: Tell us something about you as an author? What are your passions in life that might one day show up in your writing? What inspires you to write?

Paula: As an author, sometimes, I know exactly where my story is going, but most times, I have only a loose idea and am surprised as things happen. I write because I have stories to tell and many characters to meet. To go deep into a tale is something I truly enjoy.

Pictures have become a passion in my life. As I’m amateur photographer, my pictures are already intertwined with my writing as I have muse pictures for scenes and plot questions. I can see me writing a story about a photographer, making the pictures the dangerous part of a story. Some of my muse pics appear on Pinterest.

Isolated

This image is entitled “Isolated.” Paula used it as an inspirational muse when writing REVENGE. You can find more of Paula’s photographic inspirations at her Pinterest board: Muse Inspirations.

Scenes

 

Here is a photo from Paula’s Pinterest Board entitled: Scenes. These are photos Paula uses to inspire her in her writing.

 

Nike: You mentioned that your villain titled and changed your story. Did the other characters behave the way you wanted?

Paula: Olivia Foster’s fiery personality changed the plot in a major way. She ditched the officer bodyguards! That scene wasn’t ever in my story. However, plotting was an even more difficult task because of detective, Phillip Landon.

Detective Lt. Phillip Landon refused to fit the characteristics of an Alpha male. This man’s career doubts and back story made him, at times, unapproachable, but he was turning into someone I didn’t know anymore. He started out with one personality, but as he grew, his background changed adding layers of baggage. In the end, he wasn’t the same man that I had first envisioned.

 

Book Blurb:

As a job coach, it’s up to Olivia Foster to ensure her clients work in a safe environment, understand their positions, and serve their employer’s mission. The death of her brother drives her career choice, and she loves her job. It remains her only focus until one of her autistic clients goes missing. Then Olivia’s employer ends her position and adds her to the suspect list, but she makes plans to bring the missing young man home.

Detective Lt. Phillip Landon is deep into second-guessing his career choice, but his well-honed instincts see major flaws inside this missing person’s case. Surprising contacts, mysterious happenings, and threats can turn deadly. Can he keep Olivia safe, protect his heart, remove the job coach from someone’s target list, and adopt a faith he never knew all while adjusting to the new lives of his old family?

 

Author Bio:

Author Paula Rose brings an “average” family into extraordinary situations, brushes with life-size strokes of reality, adding just a touch of humor, and coats with suspense inside Christian fiction. Paula’s research gives readers a panoramic view from law enforcement and lends to character authenticity. She enjoys writing in the romantic suspense, suspense, and mystery genres, but when she’s not writing, Paula Rose is playing amateur photographer. Member of ACFW.

 

More Purchase Lnks:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/13x45kB
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/13x4bbW
iBooks: http://bit.ly/1xjbjqt
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1xp6KI0
Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1zoDRN5
Amazon.co.uk: http://amzn.to/1EucMg1