Spotlight on Carla Neggers

Carla NeggersDear Reader Friends:

Living in Vermont, where lots of snow is a given every winter, I love to snowshoe and cross-country ski. It was during such a trek along picturesque snow-covered trails that I came up with the idea for KISS THE MOON, my very first stand-alone novel for MIRA Books. Thanks to reader demand, my publisher is reissuing KISS THE MOON this week with a haunting new cover.
Kiss the Moon
In KISS THE MOON, Penelope Chestnut ventures into the frozen woods of the lakes region of New Hampshire and discovers the wreckage of a small plane. An aviator herself, she sees clues to a conspiracy in the rusted-out remains.

Rumors of her discovery bring Wyatt Sinclair to Cold Spring. He is determined to put to rest a family scandal and learn what really happened to his legendary uncle, who had disappeared with his adventuress lover years earlier in a private plane.

As Wyatt and Penelope investigate, old motives are uncovered and new ones created, including a growing attraction between the two. But when an unknown enemy emerges with a violence rooted in desperation, uncovering the truth will be far less problematic than surviving it.

If you’re looking for a good book to read during a cold winter day, I hope you’ll pick up KISS THE MOON or order it from your favorite bookseller. It would also make the perfect Valentine’s gift for your friends who enjoy suspense with just the right blend of romance.

Carla Neggers

October Best Bets for Suspense…

I love October. The summer heat is mostly gone. I no longer have to be up by 6:00am to take the dogs for a walk. The new TV season has started. I’ve been back at work for about 6 weeks, so everything has settled into a routine. I work in academia so I get to take some time off in the summer, something for which I am very appreciative. I must say, though, the transition back can be a little rough. “Meetings? I have to go to meetings? Really?” fades to “So, when’s the next meeting?” by October. The resentment I feel over the fact that work seriously cuts into my reading time has also eased by now. In the summer I like to beat the heat by lying in bed and reading. By October, I’ve relearned how to prioritize my reading, since I’m lucky to get time to read over lunch or before going to sleep.

The 2ND LIECOLD DAWNI made a point to take a sneak peak at two of this month’s new releases. THE 2nd LIE is the second book in The Chapman Files by Tara Taylor Quinn. The lynch pin of the series is psychologist Kelly Chapman, whose cases form the basis for each story. In THE 2nd LIE, Kelly is contacted by a mother concerned about her 14-year-old, Maggie Winston, who seems to have developed a romantic interest in an older man. Sharing her concern, Kelly asks her friend, Deputy Samantha Jones, to help. Sam is dealing with her own issues–a concern about a growing meth problem no one else seems to share, and sorting out her relationship with Kyle, her former fiancé and current lover. Ms. Quinn deftly handles the complex issue of how meth can infiltrate a small town. Her characters are engaging, and the relationships are believable. Look for the release of the THE 3rd SECRET in November.

I also took a peek at COLD DAWN by Carla Neggers which continues the story of the Cameron family, as seen in COLD RIVER and COLD PURSUIT. In the latest book to take place in Black Falls, Vermont, Rose Cameron gets two surprises in one day. First, she finds a dead body in a shack, only to find out it’s a man with whom she had a contentious relationship. In that moment, who should turn up but Nick Martini; a friend of her brothers with whom she had a one night stand (or so she thought). Nick, on the other hand, is interested in more than one night but has to convince Rose she wants the same thing. COLD DAWN is well written, and I really liked the characters. Ms. Negger’s seamlessly provides important background information from the earlier books. However, I think reading the first books in the series before this one is important. I had some difficulty keeping the characters straight and felt I was missing a lot of the nuance. I plan to go back and read the first books in the series, and come back to COLD DAWN, I think it’s worth the time and effort.

TWO LETHAL LIESPURSUIT OF JUSTICENow, a rundown of some of the other new releases. TWO LETHAL LIES, by Annie Solomon, tells the story of Mitch Turner who went on the run when his daughter was born because he has concealed a truth so dangerous, its discovery could jeopardize both their lives. Now he finds himself a suspect in a series of murders, and his daughter has gone missing. His only help comes in the form of Neesy Brown, a woman who believes in him and vows to help Mitch find his missing child.

PURSUIT OF JUSTICE, by DiAnn Mills, starts with the legend of the Spider Rock treasure which has lured people to West Texas with promises of unimaginable wealth but has so far only resulted in three deaths. FBI Special Agent Bella Jordan is sent out to investigate the murders, only to discover that the prime suspect is someone from her past, a past she’s tried desperately to forget.

PLAY DIRTYDESPERATE CHOICESDESPERATE CHOICES, by Kathy Ivan, is romantic suspense with a little paranormal element thrown in. Psychic Theresa Crawford’s former beau, Max Lamoreaux, walks into her New Orleans New Age shop, looking for her help. He is a private investigator looking for his missing godson. The police think he’s a runaway, but Max suspects he’s in danger. He may be skeptical of Theresa’s abilities, but her clues may be what it takes to save Tommy.

PLAY DIRTY is the first book in Lorie O’Clare’s Bounty Hunters series. Sexy bounty hunter Greg King hasn’t gotten over his estranged wife, Haley. What he doesn’t know is that she was forced to leave him and enter the witness protection program after putting a vicious criminal behind bars. When she finds herself in trouble again, she breaks her silence and turns to the one person she knows she can trust… her husband.

LIE WITH MEI just downloaded my copy of LIE WITH ME by Stephanie Tyler. I’ll be posting a review and will let you know in the comments section when it’s available. At this point, I can tell you it’s the first in the Shadow Force Series. Framed for a double murder, Delta Force operative Cameron Moore is given a new lease on life by the CIA—provided he pays them back by doing their black ops dirty work. But now Cam is ready to renegotiate the deal, and he thinks he’s found the perfect bargaining chip: Skylar Slavin, bestselling author of espionage thrillers and the daughter of the CIA man who saved Cam from a prison sentence.

On a related note, Dee Davis, will is our guest author for the October meeting of the Fort Worth chapter of the DFW Tea book club. I am rapidly making my way through her A-TAC series, DESPERATE DEEDS, DANGEROUS DESIRES, and DARK DECEPTIONS. I’ll let you know what Ms. Davis has say.

Any questions you would like me to ask Dee Davis? What do you like about October? How much reading time can you squeeze into a day?

Happy reading!


Fresh Thrills | It’s heating up … Best Suspense novels for June

It’s June and the Texas heat has settled in for the summer. If I’m not out the door by 6:45am, we skip the trip to the dog park because it’s just too hot. So, fun means indoor and air-conditioned activities. Movies, television, shopping, and going to the gym are all on the list. Of course, my favorite activity is curling-up in bed with a good book. Now that I have a new mattress (what took me so long?), napping and reading are my two favorite ways to relax. This month, there are some great choices in romantic suspense to keep you entertained while you stay cool.

Shannon McKenna
Kensington; $20.95
I can’t wait to read McKenna’s latest addition to the McCloud series which answers the question—What happened to Kevin? Davy, Connor, and Sean mourned the loss of their brother, Kevin, in Edge of Midnight, Out of Control, and Standing in the Shadows. When the McCloud brothers discover Kev is alive, they won’t rest until they find him. Beaten and tortured almost to death, Kev Larsen was found eighteen years earlier in a warehouse alley. He survived his brutal ordeal, but his memories before that night were completely erased. When he nearly dies from trying to save someone from drowning, the brain surgery he has to save his life triggers fragmented, terrifying memories. With only these memories and the name of his torturer to guide him, Kev is determined to unlock the secrets to his past. Edie Parrish has always been good at not letting anyone get too close to her. If someone were to learn of her unusual gift, her life would be immediately jeopardized. But when Kev discovers who she really is, Edie has only one choice: to trust him.

Karen Rose
Grand Central Publishing; $7.99
Rose is a master of suspense and building our relationship with characters over several books. Silent Screams brings together Olivia Sutherland and David Hunter who we met in several books including Count to Ten and I Can See You. When a teenage girl dies in a suspicious fire, Detective Olivia Sutherland is assigned to track down the arsonist. Then she discovers something more sinister: a vicious blackmailer who preys on young people and murders without hesitation. Making her work even harder is sexy firefighter David Hunter. He’s not only sharing the case but sparking memories of their long-ago night of passion, when feelings were left unspoken and hearts were broken.

Seven Deadly Sins #2
Allison Brennan
Ballantine Books; $7.99
Original Sin, the first in this series, is high on my to-read pile. Now I can read it back-to-back with this new release. In Carnal Sin, a coven of witches well versed in the black arts unleash the Seven Deadly Sins on earth – as incarnate demons with an agenda. When straying men are murdered, Moira and Rafe Cooper, an ex-seminarian battling demons of his own, confront a succubus who’s far more deadly than they imagined

Secret of Shadow Falls #1
Maggie Shayne
Mira; $7.99
Look for all three in Shayne’s suspense trilogy to be out this summer (June, August, and September). The first in the series features rookie cop Bryan Kendall whose lover was a victim of the Nightcap Strangler. When Bryan becomes a suspect in the killings, he and his ex, Dawn Jones, search for the truth.

Carla Neggers
Mira, $24.95
Previously seen in The Widow and The Angel, Scoop Wisdom returns as the hero of his own adventure. After taking a backful of shrapnel from that bomb, Scoop Wisdom goes to Ireland’s Beara Peninsula to recuperate. There he runs into an attractive Celtic archaeologist who is determined to find out who tried to kill her in a remote island cave there a year earlier.

Joyce Lamb
Berkley Sensation
June 2010; $7.99
Newspaper reporter Charlie Trudeau is living an ordinary life, until witnessing a fatal hit-and-run accident gives her an intense psychic power she has no clue how to handle— and brings a Chicago police detective to her doorstep…Noah Lassiter wants nothing more than to find the driver who killed his good friend. But his only lead is the beautiful Charlie Trudeau, who gets prickly when he starts nosing around town. Charlie’s clearly hiding something, but Noah needs her help unraveling the mystery of his friend’s death—even if the electricity between them complicates things.

Until next month…Maria Munoz

Carla Neggers | Travel Tales: Writing on the Fly

I’m on the road. I just arrived in beautiful Salt Lake City on not such a beautiful day, but what incredible scenery. It’s my second time out west this year. In June, I was in Denver, Phoenix and Las Vegas touring for ABANDON, my most recent book, with side trips to Sedona and the Grand Canyon. In between these two trips west, I’ve scooted off to Dallas, New York, Maine and Toronto. Fortunately, I can write pretty much anytime, anywhere. I spent the first three hours of the flight to Salt Lake working on THE ANGEL, which is due out in hardcover in late April. I love this story, so it was easy to drag out my laptop, put on my iPod and dive in.

Not everyone can or likes to write on the road, but for me it can be fun and energizing. Some writers I know like to hole up in a hotel for the last week or two they’re working on a book. Total immersion. No distractions. It’s something I’ve never done, but I can understand the appeal—especially if it’s a nice hotel! I wrote part of THE WIDOW, which is due out in paperback in a few weeks, at the Hermitage in Nashville, one of my all-time favorite hotels.

I’ve learned the hard way to be very clear about what’s trash and what’s not trash. I left a print-out of BREAKWATER in our hotel room in Reno two years ago. I’d made about eight-hours worth of handwritten changes—no computer backup. We were on the tail-end of another trip west—we drove up the Pacific Coast Highway from San Diego to San Francisco, then on to Reno and, finally, Lake Tahoe. After so many days on the road, the flimsy gray cardboard box that held my manuscript was very beat up…and out it went with the trash, never to be seen again. Live and learn…

Of course, I take trips when I don’t write at all. I like to give my mind a chance to roam. Last summer, we stayed in a cottage on a sheep farm on the southwest coast of Ireland—what an experience. I wasn’t doing research or even thinking about an Ireland-related book, but the moment we stepped into the ruin of the coastal stone cottage where my son-in-law’s great-grandfather was born…I knew a story had grabbed hold of me. I didn’t know what it was or when I’d write it, but, looking back, I realize I started writing THE ANGEL that day.

We’re off to Beverly Hills after Salt Lake City. I’ll be finished with THE ANGEL and look forward to giving my mind another chance to roam. Who knows what’ll happen—maybe I’ll just people-watch—but it’ll be an adventure.

Take care, and happy reading!