Sunday, August 12, 2018

Never Say Goodbye by Richard Parker - A Review



In Never Say Goodbye, Richard Parker introduces us to Detective Tom Fabian. Changes are taking place in his personal life that are presenting many challenges. He and his wife have decided to separate, and their daughter will be leaving home to attend college. His professional life is about to take a very dark turn due to a tragedy that occurred within his Department. He has been assigned the position of Lead Detective on a case involving multiple murders. There are no clues, no witnesses, no suspects, and the investigation is at a standstill.

His boss, DCI Metcalfe, expects progress, and insists Fabian stay away from the press on this one. Tom had previously been the Lead Detective, and driving force behind the apprehension of a serial killer. In that particular case, the press had been helpful with the capture. Tom became the face of the Department with the media, but Metcalfe mistrusted the press, and was determined that level of publicity for both Fabian and the Department should not occur with this case.

At the time Tom took over the lead position, there had already been four murders, with the victims being one man and three women. The murders occurred in different parts of the city, and no connection between the victims was apparent, except for the weapon and their manner of death. They were all stabbed with the same knife, and the killer inflicted post-mortem stab wounds to their faces. Was this an attempt by the killer to instill fear throughout the city? Was the killer trying to send some type of message?

Fabian eventually figures out what links the victims, and it is as disturbing as the crimes themselves. The victims’ last names are street names, and the sequence of their murders follows a particular route. Which street name will be next on the route, and without any clue as to direction, how can the police identify and protect any potential targets? What association does the killer have with these particular locations? Detective Tom Fabian is racing against a killer’s clock to an unknown destination. Who will cross the finish line first?


Never Say Goodbye pulls you in right from the very beginning. The plot is fast-paced, and filled with twists and turns, and the characters are genuine and engaging. Now that I have met Detective Tom Fabian, I can’t wait to tag along with him on his next case. This is Book #1 with this character, and it is a gem. I am really looking forward to Book #2, and then some. If you enjoy a dark crime thriller, Never Say Goodbye is definitely for you, and I recommend it very highly.

Never Say Goodbye will be available to order on August 14, 2018.

You can order it here

OR

You can order it here


Thursday, January 11, 2018

Keep Her Safe by Richard Parker - A Review



Maggie, a single mother with a young child, awakes one night to find an armed woman in her home. Maggie doesn’t know her, but she does know who sent her, and why. The young woman, Holly, has been instructed to kill Maggie in order to ensure the safe return of her baby. Maggie understands this woman’s deadly mission since she herself had been sent on an identical one. Someone who calls himself the Babysitter kidnaps the children of single mothers and instructs them to commit murder in order to get their children back unharmed. He even provides them with the names and locations of their intended targets.

Maggie’s daughter, Penny, was returned safe and sound, and she was not going to allow anyone to endanger her again. Holly’s daughter, Abigail, was now in the hands of this demented puppeteer, and she believed following his orders was the only way to get her child back. Two mothers confront each other in the middle of the night, each intent on protecting their children whatever the cost. Choices have to be made, and quickly too, because the Babysitter’s clock is ticking, and when the sun rises, time’s up. Will these two women play out his sick game, or is there any room for trust between them so together, they can confront this madman, and still save their children?

The author does not take you gently by the hand and lead you into a plot land of sunshine and roses, where together you, along with the characters, can slowly gather strength to face an upcoming crisis. No. Not this time. In this story, you are immediately set down right in the middle of a nightmare that you will share with two mothers fighting for their own lives and ultimately, the lives of their children. It is a unique format for a novel, and that is what makes this one a true thriller. Life doesn’t slowly build up with a lot of backstory – life simply happens without warning, and so do the events in Keep Her Safe.

The mothers’ journey in Keep Her Safe is one of twists and turns, with danger around each and every corner. You will understand their anger, you will sense their determination, and you will feel their fear. While it is true that you won’t be able to put this one down, you won’t want to either. Just like Maggie and Holly, you will need to know where the road leads, and in the end, who will win this deadly game.

You can get Keep Her Safe here

OR

You can get Keep her Safe here

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Hide and Seek by Richard Parker - A Review



It’s a day, just like any other day.  Lana is washing dishes, and her four-year old son Cooper is out playing in the yard. She glances briefly out the window, and sees that a man wearing a mask has jumped over the fence into their yard. To her horror, he begins placing a sack over Cooper. She fights with him, and saves her son from his would-be abductor. Before he flees the scene, the man whispers ‘tomorrow’. While reporting the incident to the police, the child reveals that the man has been in close contact with him on previous occasions, whispering to him through the fence. Now this monster has a name: Mr. Whisper.

Lana, her husband Todd, and Cooper relocate, but Lana cannot move on. She becomes obsessed with finding Mr. Whisper, and follows a website that tracks child killers and pedophiles. The police continue to investigate the case without success. When they win a family vacation at an adventure park, it seems an opportunity to put the ordeal behind them, even for a short time. At the park however, Todd is assaulted, and Cooper is abducted. Now, the nightmare truly unfolds.

Someone begins luring Lana to crime sites, Todd disappears from the hospital he was admitted to following the assault, and Cooper is still missing. What does all this mean? Where is Todd, and what dark secret is he hiding from his wife? Did the stranger keep his promise of ‘tomorrow’, or is someone using the child’s abduction to get to Lana?

Hide and Seek is packed full of dark and disturbing surprises around every turn. A mother on a quest to find her son, a father whose night terrors drive him to take desperate measures, and a stranger pulling the strings like a diabolical puppeteer, drawing them in for his own demented purpose. The characters are well developed and genuine, the settings are menacing, and the fear is palpable. The plot moves at lightning speed as a mother races to save her son, all the while somehow knowing she’s the missing token in this cruel and depraved game.


Richard Parker has done it again with another top notch, five-star thriller. This story will grab hold of you right from the start. Clear your calendar before you open it to Page 1 because there’s no way you’ll be able to put it down until the end.

You can get Hide and Seek here

OR

You can get Hide and Seek here

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Infinite Darkness (The Edge: Volume 2) by Patrick Reuman - A Review




Infinite Darkness (The Edge: Volume 2), is a collection of horror stories you don’t want to miss out on. This anthology has no central theme, no min/max word count for the stories, and the stories are arranged in no discernible order. These are the reasons why it’s such an enjoyable read. None of the writers were trapped inside rule after rule, and were free to share their darkest, and most disturbing, tales of fear, superstition, and malice. There’s something in here for all dedicated fans of horror. It contains 17 stories, the works of 10 incredibly talented writers. These stories will shock, surprise, disturb, and scare you. If you are looking for a great read, I recommend this one highly.

You can get Infinite Darkness here

Friday, May 26, 2017

Be My Killer by Richard Parker: Words CAN Hurt You! - A Review




'Sticks and stones can break your bones, but words can never hurt you.' Really? Think again.

Let’s have some fun. Sign in to your Twitter account and access the hashtag BeMyKiller, a stream to entice a serial killer to select you as their next victim. There you will enter your tweet - your dare. Use your imagination – be creative – make him want you. Only. You. Wanna play?

A disturbing prank? An irresponsible practical joke? Perhaps, but as occurs after all actions, there occurs a reaction. In this case, the reactions that resulted were deadly consequences. People were being targeted, and murdered, in ways that matched quite literally the taunts they aimed at the killer. One victim baited the predator with the words ‘want a piece of me?’. You can probably make an accurate guess at how this young man’s life ended.

Hazel Salter, a film producer, had a theory about the killings, and also had a personal stake in this tragedy. One of the victims was a childhood friend of hers, and she was determined to try to find a way to convince the authorities to focus their investigation in a different direction. She gathers her crew together, and establishes a base of operations at the site of her friend’s death, with the goal of making a documentary about the murders. Plans include interviewing locals, family members and friends of victims, and members of law enforcement as possible.

Even someone with the best of intentions could not anticipate how their plans could go horribly wrong. As the project proceeds, people associated with it are systematically murdered. Who is responsible? How can those left protect themselves? Are the killings and disappearances related to the original Twitter prank, or has another serial killer chosen to use the area as his hunting ground?

Richard Parker has assembled a cast of characters whose lives criss-cross again and again, and weave an impenetrable web of mystery. From the first page, Be My Killer will lure you into that web, and hold you tightly until the last. Be My Killer is definitely not for the faint of heart, but if you’re looking for an impressively dark puzzle that gathers itself together, one terrifying piece after another, then Be My Killer is for you.

You can get Be My Killer from Amazon here:

OR

You can get Be My Killer from Amazon UK here:

Sunday, February 26, 2017

New Home for My Books

Severed my relationship with DiskUs Publishing, and all rights to my 9 books listed with them have reverted back to me. DiskUs has always dealt with me in an honest and fair fashion; however, exposure is very limited since books are only available via their site. Under new management, this may change in the future, but at this time, I prefer to find another home for my work. I am in the process of reworking several of my novels and will be seeking a new publisher for all of them, so stay tuned for updates!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Flash Fiction Friday, Week 61: Writer's Block

The prompt this week was to write a horror story that included the following: Writer, 50,000, month, goal, and winner. This isn’t a horror story in the supernatural sense, but some people can create a horrific situation without any help from the other side. Please enjoy.

Writer’s Block

I did it. Yes, I did it. I finished the novel on time, and it is a great success. Come to think of it, this one might be my most successful novel ever. It frightens me to look back and remember how close I came to letting myself down. All my life, I had made certain to always set a goal and then devote all my time and effort to accomplishing it. When I hit a roadblock, I simply plowed through it, until an event occurred that turned my roadblock into a cement wall. When my agent called and said I needed to drop whatever I was doing because we needed to talk, that set in motion a series of events that completely turned my life around. I remember his call as if it happened yesterday.

***

“Jack, I’m going to be completely honest with you. You know that I don’t only think of you as a client, I have also always thought of you as a friend. My intent is not to hurt you, but I have to be blunt. It’s the only way I believe I can help you, and believe me, Jack, you need my help.”

“Richie, don’t be so dramatic. You’ve always been straight with me. We’ve known each other for most of our lives. You should know by now that you don’t’ have to tip-toe around me. What’s so urgent that you had to call me so early in the morning, and on a Saturday? Since when do you work on Saturdays?”

“Okay, Jack, here it is. You’re currently under contract with one of the biggest publishers in the country, and you are obligated to produce one more novel before your contract comes up for re-negotiation and hopefully, renewal.”

“I’m aware of that, Richie, and I’ve been working non-stop. You’ve been getting the drafts I’ve been sending over, haven’t you? What’s the problem?”

“The problem is I have been getting the drafts you’ve been sending over.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Jack, I’m sorry, but they’re awful. Each chapter is worse than the one before. It isn’t that they’re just rough, they’re terrible. But, that’s not the biggest issue right now. The thing is, you only have a few months left before your deadline. While you don’t have to turn in a print-ready copy, you do have to turn in a complete first draft for review. You’ve been working on this one for a little over a year and all you’ve sent me is around 50,000 words. Have you been holding onto the rest or is that all you’ve got written so far?”

“Wow. Awful, huh? Are you sure you’re really an agent? Have you never heard of an editor?”

“Jack, there isn’t an editor on this planet that could fix the crap you’ve been sending me. I am so sorry to have to say these things to you, but it is all crap. A miracle couldn’t fix what you’ve done so far. What is going on with you? This isn’t the kind of stuff you produce. You are a hell of a writer, my friend. Your work makes people angry, it makes them laugh, it makes them cry, but your latest? Frankly, I can’t make it to the end of any of the chapters without nodding off. It’s all flat. There’s no emotion, there’s no action, there’s no…uh…there’s nothing. There’s nothing at all.”

“Maybe I’m just burned out, Richie. Maybe I just can’t cut it anymore.”

“Nonsense. In the past, you’ve cranked out first drafts in a little over a month and while it took time to get them ready for publication, there was something great there to work with, and from. No one expects you to keep up a pace like that, but like I said, you’ve been working on this one for over a year and you’ve really got basically nothing to show for it.”

“What am I going to do, Richie? I stare at my keyboard and feel nothing. Usually I can’t type fast enough, but for the past few months, I just hit the keys and I don’t even care if it makes any sense. Ever since Linda…”

“I know how hard it has been on you, Jack. I also know how easy it is for me to tell you to forget her, and remind you that she was nothing but a poor excuse for a human being. You loved her, married her, and all she did was take you for whatever she could get from you, and that wasn’t even the worst thing. Instead of simply walking out on you, she made sure you knew she was running off with another man. I get it, okay? I do, and I know it takes time to move past something like that, and I don’t mean to sound cold, but it’s time to pick yourself up and start living again. Don’t let the past haunt you – put an end to it.

“I think I have a solution. You’re too close to this project and you’ve reached a point where you’re just going through the motions. I want you to take some time off, a month, where you don’t think about writing at all. I have a cabin at Black Bear Lake, and I want you to stay there. It’s fairly close to where you live, and secluded enough so no one will disturb you. I’ve arranged for the caretaker to stock it with food and other supplies you may need. You can take my boat out on the lake, fish, stare at the walls, whatever. At the end of the month, I want you to go back home, start fresh, and draft me a story that I can be proud to send off to your editor. What do you think?”

“I didn’t know you had a place out my way. Why didn’t you tell me about it? I could have taken some time off and joined you for a day or two. I like to fish too, you know.”

“Uh, I don’t get down there very often, and when I do, I just want to shut myself off from the world.”

“I sure get that, Richie. That’s exactly what I need. Hey, can you get away for a few days this time and join me? It’s hard for me to be alone since Linda…”

“Jack, enough looking back. I can’t get away right now. I’m in the middle of a couple of big deals, so you go and use this time to get yourself together. I’ll overnight you the keys. Call me when you get back.”

“Will do. Thanks, Richie. For everything.”

“No problem, Jack. You’ll work this out because you’re a winner. I truly hope this helps you.”

***
It certainly did help. Being at Richie’s cabin cleared my head right up. If I hadn’t gone, I never would have found all those pictures of him and my wife. Linda’s always been that way. No matter where she stays, or for how long, she always has to make the place her own. She sure made that cabin home. There were photos of the two of them in drawers, along with some of her drawers, if you get my drift. I used to pay the credit card bills for purchases of lingerie, sex toys, and massage oils. Now I know why all I ever saw of those things were the bills for them.

I wished I had a camera to capture Richie’s and Linda’s expressions when I showed up at his penthouse in New York. I let them finish their cocktails before I gutted them both. Again, those looks of surprise with each thrust of the knife were priceless, and I’ll remember them until the day I die. After I tucked them both in the king size bed, I booted up Richie’s computer and wrote the draft of a true crime novel that I was later told would most likely be a best seller. It took me less than a month to complete it because my inspirations were close at hand. I had planned to leave to return home the day after I overnighted the manuscript to my editor, but apparently, some of Richie’s neighbors had reported the smell. When the police arrived to investigate, I was in the middle of making a latte, so I didn’t answer the door quickly enough for their liking. They had the concierge unlock the door, took a look around, and arrested me on the spot.

***

Richie was so right. I had allowed the past to haunt me, so I put an end to it. Permanently. My attorney told me this morning that my book has been number one on the New York Times Bestseller List for 16 weeks straight. Being on Death Row, I can’t collect the profits, but that’s okay. I set a goal and achieved it. Richie was right about something else too. I am a winner.