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A Serenade to Die For – Blitz

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Romantic Suspense
Date Published: April 2017
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On the verge of her long-sought career breakthrough, singer Isbel Vargas has just completed the performance of a lifetime when a kidnapper demands a ransom for her father. Thanks to his car theft and antiquities operation, her father will be arrested if she involves the Acapulco police. Who can she turn to?
Isbel’s ex-boyfriend, Cane Mullins, is once again south of the border, purportedly tracking down his beloved Camaro, a vintage street rod stolen years before by her father. Cane gets more than he bargains for, though, when he again crosses paths with the exquisite singer. Chased at high speed through the Sierra Madres, the former lovers search for Isbel’s father and a priceless sword he has hidden away, the sole surviving Aztec maquahuitl, while sparks fly and passion reignites. But can Isbel trust Cane again…with her heart?
Excerpt 

from Chapter One

Acapulco, Mexico, 2008
                “Isbel.” Clap. Clap. Clap.
                “ISBEL!” Clap. Clap. Clap.
                “ISBEL!” CLAP. CLAP. CLAP.
                Isbel laughed and danced to center stage in rhythm with the clapping. Three spotlights warmed her skin as her white sequined dress glistened and twinkled in reply. Spinning slowly, she loosened the clips holding her long black hair and let it tumble onto her shoulders.
                “I’m Isbel Vargas,” she murmured into the mike. The theater erupted. “I hope you loved your evening in Paradise. I know I did.”
                An understatement. Finally. She was home.
                Wolf whistles faded and shouts of encouragement fell silent as she began to sing again, a final serenade for the perfect audience.
                Her voice soared.
                At the end of the song, she succumbed to the joy claiming her soul. This was what she was meant to do. The music swelled into a crescendo as Isbel let tears stream down her face. Lighter flames and cell phone screens glowed in the surrounding galaxy of fans. Isbel blew kisses and waved and then stepped back to catch hands with Hudson and Octavio as they lined up to bow together.
                Backstage, goose bumps prickled her arms as Isbel palmed the tears from her cheeks. Her mountain of a drummer, Octavio, laughed and lifted her off her feet to spin her around. She looked over his shoulder and stiffened as he lowered her. Her feet touched down.
                Cane.
                He shouldn’t be here. He couldn’t be. She’d banished him forever. Yet there he stood, an unwelcome specter from her past.
                Hurricane. It really was him.
                He said quietly, “You were sensational, Isabella. Better than I remembered.” His voice hadn’t changed. Smooth as a frosty beer on a salt-flats day, but quiet and low, taking its own sweet time to roll out each syllable.
                Apparently Cane’s taste in clothing hadn’t changed either. A vivid yellow and green Hawaiian shirt topped new khakis and work boots. He looked strong and tan and unfairly handsome. Flashing the same stunning white smile as he pushed his red baseball cap to the back of his head, he freed more of his wavy dark hair. His eyes gleamed with mischief as he suddenly grabbed the brim of the cap and swept it low in a courtly bow.
                “Guess I should call you Isbel now, shouldn’t I? Like everyone else does. Well, whoever you are, you could stop the Super Bowl in that dress.”
                Isbel remembered to breathe.
                “Hurricane Mullins,” she said softly, holding tight to her desire to march over and slap him. “The only thing you can call me is good-bye.”
                Was it Hurricane who’d tailed her through traffic earlier in the day? Whoever it was rode a bright red crotch rocket. Funny how it matched Cane’s bright red cap. Definitely his style. Or more appropriately, lack of style. On top of that, only the band and hotel staff could get backstage. By facing her here, Hurricane thumbed his nose at all of them, at their pathetic security measures and semblance of control.
                The hint of a smile on his face, he looked at the floor in front of her toes. Clearly, there wasn’t a contrite bone in his body as his gaze then swept up to relish every curve of her body. Amber flames ignited deep in his eyes. “Glad to see you haven’t lost that spitfire,” he said.
                “Glad to see you’re enjoying the view,” she retorted. “Now get out of here. Or I’ll call security.”
                Hurricane shrugged. “Okay by me. They have a couple of problem areas, and I can set them straight.”
                “You arrogant…”
                “Look, Isabella. Isbel. I don’t want to fight. I came back down for the same reason I did the first time, when I took the job with your father.”
                “What, did you actually find your precious car?”
                Flipping his cap around in his hands, he shrugged and said, “Not yet. But there’s a new lead on the Camaro. If I get it back and your father did have something to do with it going missing, he might take the fall. Figured I could at least warn you.”
                Isbel narrowed her eyes. “How big of you. Or are you just trying to find out where he is?”
                Octavio leaned close to rest one hand on Isbel’s shoulder. “You okay, Isbel? Want me to get rid of this guy?”
                Isbel hesitated. That would be the easy way out. At six foot four, Octavio stood a couple of inches taller than Cane and outweighed him by at least forty pounds. Cane looked tougher, though. Hardened. Like seasoned driftwood. She wondered if Octavio really could get rid of him if Cane fought back. But this was her battle, and she could handle Hurricane Mullins.
                Isbel shook her head. “I’m fine, Tavio. Thanks. I’ll just be another minute.” He squeezed her shoulder gently but didn’t move. “Seriously. Go back over with the band. I’ll be right there.”
                Octavio nodded slowly. He pointed at Cane. “I’m watching,” he said as he backed away.
                Cane sighed and slipped his cap back onto his head. “I shouldn’t have even tried. You had nothing to do with it then, and you don’t now.”
                “Nothing to do with it? You’re talking about my father!”
                “Isabella, will you for God’s sake listen to me?!” He straightened to tower over her. “Just this once? Please? This time I want to talk about my family!”
                Isbel clenched her jaw, trying to think of a jagged comeback. Drew a blank.
                Hurricane hurried on. “I bought the Camaro with my brother. We decided to share the car but would hand it down to my kids or his—whoever had ’em first. We sweated blood rebuilding the damn thing. Had a blast, though. Always did, until those last few months.” Cane fell silent, gazed beyond Isbel at nothing. Then he said quietly, “Sky died in ’96, just after we finished restoring the car.” He cleared his throat, looked back at her. “I respected your decision, and I’ve stayed away, as you asked.”
                “Cane. Your brother… You never…”
                “Doesn’t matter. Not now.” He waved his hands between them, breaking their bond. “But even if it had been a clunker used for delivering pizzas, Mickey jacked it.”
                “He said he didn’t steal it.”
                “He pushed it through his chop shop.”
                “You never proved that.”
                “What if I would have?”
                Isbel swallowed hard. At the sweet age of twenty it had been easy for her to blame Hurricane. Now, she knew better.
                Her father wasn’t exactly honest, but the label “criminal” didn’t exactly fit him, either. But one thing she did know: she was absolutely furious that this all resurfaced today. Today, of all days, when she should be celebrating, Cane had to return.
                “Seems like old times, doesn’t it?” Isbel said. “But you know, Hurricane, just like your nickname, every time you show up there’s a huge mess.”
                “It’s not my nickname.”
                “Oh, yeah, I forgot. Well, stay out of my life. You don’t know anything about my father. Or me.”
                “Isabella, I like your father. Always did.”
                “Sure have a funny way of showing it.”
                “I just want my car back.” Cramming his thumbs into his pants pockets, Cane inhaled raggedly. “And…it was…amazing to hear you sing again. There was a time when I thought I’d get to listen to you for the rest of my life.”
                She turned her back on him, strode over to the refreshment table, and groped for a bottle of water. Twisting off the cap helped hide the tremor in her hands. She took a deep drink, nodded in reassurance at Octavio, who watched from the far end of the table, and then walked straight back to Cane. “Stay out of my life,” she said.
                “I’d hoped that after all this time you would have cooled off and, when I finally explained why the Camaro is so important, that you could…well, that you would forgive me.”
                She searched his eyes. Not a hint of insincerity. She understood better now. But forgiveness? It was too late. She couldn’t betray her badly-behaved father any more than Cane could betray the memory of his brother.
                “Isab…”
                “Go.”
                He nodded. Pulled a card from his pocket. “If you ever need me…”
                “Good-bye, Hurricane.”
About the Authors

Janet Fogg’s focus on writing began when she was CFO and Managing Principal of one of Colorado’s largest architectural firms. Fifteen writing awards later she resigned from the firm to follow the yellow brick road, and ten months after that signed a contract with The Wild Rose Press for her historical romance, Soliloquy, a HOLT Medallion Award of Merit winner.
Janet once participated in a successful rattlesnake hunt, has climbed two dozen of Colorado’s Fourteeners, was alternate on a winning trapshooting team, and recently received her motorcycle endorsement.
With husband Richard, Janet co-wrote Fogg in the Cockpit, one of five books nominated in 2012 by the Air Force Historical Foundation for best World War II book reviewed in Air Power History.
In 2016, Janet Fogg and Dave Jackson celebrated the release of their first book in a new adventure series for the young—and young at heart!  In Misfortune Annie and the Locomotive Reaper, you’ll ride with Annabelle Fortune, an 1880s cowgirl tougher than Calamity Jane!  Book Two, Misfortune Annie and the Voodoo Curse, will be released in late 2017.
In their newest collaboration, A Serenade to Die For, you’ll be introduced to a sultry singer, her hunky ex-boyfriend, his stolen hot rod, and the sole-surviving Aztec sword. (It ain’t over till the phat lady sings!)

Not your typical author, Dave Jackson started writing in his constant pursuit to become a renaissance man. Then he fell in love with the art form. Comedy remains one of his many passions and he writes and performs skits as well as stand-up. Also a songwriter and guitarist, Dave has composed over 300 musical titles.  Settled now in Colorado, Dave is passionate about living life to the fullest with those he loves, especially his young son.
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SOUL OF TOLEDO – BLITZ

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Historical Fiction 
Date Published:  January 2016
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Thirty years before the Spanish Inquisition, the seeds of hatred have sprouted in Castile. Suspicions fester. Rage churns beneath the surface. Viçente Pérez—a man who wields enviable power but harbors a shameful past—is the only one who can keep the tension from exploding out of control.
As the Christian son of secret Jews, Viçente is in a hopeless position—charged with keeping the peace, but always suspected by the city’s Old Christians, unwilling but duty-bound to help the increasingly persecuted Jews, and to aid his king whose rule is threatened.
When Viçente crosses the ruthless, power-hungry lawyer Marcos García de Mora, he makes a formidable enemy. García’s plan: to rally the common men, attack Jews, and purify Toledo by purging suspected heretics—the Christian descendants of Jews, converts like Viçente.
As war breaks out between the king and his cousins, and García and his madmen rise to power in Toledo, Viçente falls in love with the mysterious Francesca and finds himself faced with impossible choices: love or duty, respect or intolerance, reverence or disdain for his ancestry.
From the courts of kings in Naples and Castile to the chambers of Pope Nicholas and the torture cellars of Toledo, this gripping novel brings to life an era of little-known history in fifteenth-century Spain, a time when a rogue inquisition threatened to destroy the very soul of Toledo.
About the Author

Edward D. Webster has had an eclectic mixture of careers, ranging from teaching Navajo students to managing transit operations. And he’s the author of a diverse collection of books. Webster admits to a fascination with unique, quirky and bizarre human behavior, and he doesn’t exempt himself from the mix. His acclaimed memoir, A Year of Sundays (Taking the Plunge and our Cat to Explore Europe) shares the eccentric tale of his yearlong adventure in Europe with his spirited blind wife and headstrong, deaf sixteen-year-old cat. His historical novel, Soul of Toledo recounts a diabolical moment in history, when madmen took over the City of Toledo and tortured suspected Jews, 30 years before the Spanish Inquisition. And his 2014 novel, The Gentle Bomber’s Melody, explores what might happen if a nutty woman, bearing a stolen baby, landed on the doorstep of a fugitive bomber hiding from the FBI. The result: irresistible insanity. From the happily unusual of A Year of Sundays to the cruelly perverse in Soul of Toledo, Edward D. Webster shines a light on offbeat aspects of human nature. Webster lives in Southern California with his divine wife and two amazing cats.
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Harrington Manor Blitz

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Historical Fiction
Date Published:  October 8, 2016

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A murderer stalks the orange groves of 1923 Southern California. Detective Sidney Snipes is called to the Harrington Manor when retired Colonel Peter Wescott Harrington is found slumped over his desk by his family. Snipes entrusts the sensational new crime fighting technology—Fingerprint Analysis to find a fierce fiend.
Just when he though he had the murderer cornered, a neighbor discovers a shallow grave in the orange groves; an unsolved missing person’s cold case files. A case that has haunted the Orange County Sheriff’s Department for three years. The evidence in the missing person’s case rumples Snipes proficient sleuthing skills as the leads take him in circles. Then to add to the muddying discord, another Harrington turns up dead, apparently murdered in his sleep.
But when a sinister child’s Jack-in-the-box, seemingly from the grim reaper himself, materializes on the Colonel’s desk, the detective is bedeviled more than he cares to admit. Nevertheless, Snipes had enough moxie to send fingerprints to every city where his suspects had ever lived. The leads take Snipes in a direction he never saw coming. Within days, he’s shocked to his eyebrows by the results; the identity of the murderer befuddles his mind. Alas, the oldest Harrington son, Shep, supposed wife, had a mock wedding to him in Manhattan, New York, and their plan was to kill the whole Harrington clan for their wealth.
Praise for Harrington Manor:
“Harrington Manor is James at his very best.”-Publisher’s Weekly
About the Author

Ronald James was born during the great depression, and as a toddler watched WPA men build a new street, from his home’s big front window. His playmates were a red rider wagon, a small black satchel and rocks. By using his imagination he had conversations with mythical street workers that bloomed into fashioned fantasies by age four. He used cardboard boxes to create fun spaces for his neighborhood playmates to enjoy and he kept telling stories all through high school. In college he abandoned writing and studied architecture. James had a successful architectural career and retired, however he wanted to keep his creative juices fluent, so he returned to his childhood story telling days and joined a writers group. Like architecture, each day he couldn’t wait to create, finish, and start new stories—like, Harrington Manor.
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The Pakistani Connection Blitz

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Espionage Thriller, Military Thriller
Date Published: July 2016
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This espionage thriller describes how MI6 was able to place a special non official under-cover agent in the Pakistani Al Qaeda organization, with the aim to finding Osama Bin Laden. His name was Naeem Fiazudin and before being recruited, he was an ex SAS soldier of Pakistani origin with an exceptional fighting record in Afghanistan. He discovered that Al Qaeda was currently being run by a far more powerful man in the background. After the CIA raid in Abbottabad, in which Ben Laden was killed, Al Qaeda and their Taliban allies, decided to use the skills of their new recruit to mount a raid on the Pakistani atomic bomb factory near Islamabad. MI6 came up with an ingenious and supposedly fail safe plan, which allowed the raid to go ahead and expose the danger that both MI6 and the CIA had for years feared, with the aim of forcing the Indian sub-continent to put their nuclear arsenal under international control as a step towards disarmament.
Mike Sander, the new MI6 director had recruited Naeem Fiazudin together another ex SAS soldier, John Sebastian, who was severely injured and took up the position of an Al Jazeera investigative journalist. The two of them were close friends and took part in the Tora Bora raid in Afghanistan at the beginning of the hunt for Bin Laden. The journalist was the convert contact man for Naeem.
The story relates the Odyssey of Naeem Fiazudin, starting with his recruitment in a Mosque in South London leading to him joining the Red Crescent organization in Pakistan and subsequent contact with the Taliban and Al Qaeda in the Swat Valley, where he had to prove himself. He was first asked to organize and mount a raid on the Pul- e-Charkhi prison in Kabul, where a brother of the Afghan Taliban leader Omar was being held and due to be executes. The raid was successful and he got the attention of a man known as the Sheikh in Dubai, who was the de-facto leader of the world wide Al Qaeda network, under the cover of a wealthy and successful businessman in the building industry.
The Sheikh decided that his new recruit should train a team of the best Al Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban fighter and mount a raid on the Pakistani Kahuta bomb making factory and steal four small portable atomic bombs. They would be aided by an inside man, who was an engineer in the end control, who was a devout Muslim and Taliban sympathizer. His job was to build in a GSM triggering device, so the bombs could be detonated anywhere in the world, in particular US and Europe. To this end the Sheikh had an ingenious plan. However, MI6 had also a high ranking Engineer in placed in the PAEC, which oversaw the Kahuta plant. His job was to disarm the bombs and place a small tracing and tracking device in them. Naeem would only be given the go ahead if he successfully accomplished this, just before the bombs were due to be collected.
Something went wrong, and although the Sheikh and the top Al Qaeda leaders, were captured or killed in a meeting in Dubai, the control of the bombs got into the hands of the IS leader. Mike Sanders, together with Naeem Fiazudin and John Sebastian had to stop him using them before it was too late, because one of the bombs had not been neutralized. This bomb was traced to London.
About the Author
Stuart Craigie was born in 1945 at the end of WWII in the North West Frontier province of war time India (now Pakistan); son of Major Ian Craigie of Scottish and Russian parentage. He is married, has adaughter and has lived and worked in Germany for the past twenty years. He holds dual British and German citizenship.
His early childhood was spent in Kenya East Africa. He finished his academic career studying Physics at University College London. After obtaining a B.Sc first class honors and Ph.D. degree he began research in high energy nuclear particle physics. Over the next fourteen years he published over eighty scientific works in major physics journals and proceedings of international conferences, His publications included two monographs and two books.(Most of his works can be found in the ww web under  “N S Craigie”)
During his research years he visited the Soviet Union and a number of east block countries attending symposiums, giving seminars and collaborating with east block physicists on joint projects. These experiences gave him a vivid impression of life behind the iron curtain during the cold war and brought him indirectly in contact with the KGB and East German Stasi, who were monitoring the scientists he had contact with.
In 1984 he left academia and entered industry as a developer of intelligent sensors for the automation industry. In his first four years he submitted and was granted six patents in the above mentioned field. In 1990 he took up a position as a senior executive of his last employer and became its joint CEO and Managing Director in 1994. One of his important tasks was chairman of the board of the directors of a joint venture company in Shanghai. Over a period ofsixteen years he visited and worked in China on numerous occasions.
As a frequent traveler over the years, visiting almost all continents, numerous countries, including most of the major cities around the world, he often took for leisure an exciting spy thriller novel from one or other of his favorite authors: Forsyth, le Carre, and Higgins. As time went on he had read most of their works as well the works of Follet, Clancy, Forbes and others, so that he found less and less to read. Ten years ago this gave him the motivation to write spy novels himself as part of a wider urge to write about life in general..
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The Pakistani Connection Blitz

the pakistani connection banner

 

Espionage Thriller, Military Thriller
Date Published: July 2016
 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png
This espionage thriller describes how MI6 was able to place a special non official under-cover agent in the Pakistani Al Qaeda organization, with the aim to finding Osama Bin Laden. His name was Naeem Fiazudin and before being recruited, he was an ex SAS soldier of Pakistani origin with an exceptional fighting record in Afghanistan. He discovered that Al Qaeda was currently being run by a far more powerful man in the background. After the CIA raid in Abbottabad, in which Ben Laden was killed, Al Qaeda and their Taliban allies, decided to use the skills of their new recruit to mount a raid on the Pakistani atomic bomb factory near Islamabad. MI6 came up with an ingenious and supposedly fail safe plan, which allowed the raid to go ahead and expose the danger that both MI6 and the CIA had for years feared, with the aim of forcing the Indian sub-continent to put their nuclear arsenal under international control as a step towards disarmament.
Mike Sander, the new MI6 director had recruited Naeem Fiazudin together another ex SAS soldier, John Sebastian, who was severely injured and took up the position of an Al Jazeera investigative journalist. The two of them were close friends and took part in the Tora Bora raid in Afghanistan at the beginning of the hunt for Bin Laden. The journalist was the convert contact man for Naeem.
The story relates the Odyssey of Naeem Fiazudin, starting with his recruitment in a Mosque in South London leading to him joining the Red Crescent organization in Pakistan and subsequent contact with the Taliban and Al Qaeda in the Swat Valley, where he had to prove himself. He was first asked to organize and mount a raid on the Pul- e-Charkhi prison in Kabul, where a brother of the Afghan Taliban leader Omar was being held and due to be executes. The raid was successful and he got the attention of a man known as the Sheikh in Dubai, who was the de-facto leader of the world wide Al Qaeda network, under the cover of a wealthy and successful businessman in the building industry.
The Sheikh decided that his new recruit should train a team of the best Al Qaeda and Pakistani Taliban fighter and mount a raid on the Pakistani Kahuta bomb making factory and steal four small portable atomic bombs. They would be aided by an inside man, who was an engineer in the end control, who was a devout Muslim and Taliban sympathizer. His job was to build in a GSM triggering device, so the bombs could be detonated anywhere in the world, in particular US and Europe. To this end the Sheikh had an ingenious plan. However, MI6 had also a high ranking Engineer in placed in the PAEC, which oversaw the Kahuta plant. His job was to disarm the bombs and place a small tracing and tracking device in them. Naeem would only be given the go ahead if he successfully accomplished this, just before the bombs were due to be collected.
Something went wrong, and although the Sheikh and the top Al Qaeda leaders, were captured or killed in a meeting in Dubai, the control of the bombs got into the hands of the IS leader. Mike Sanders, together with Naeem Fiazudin and John Sebastian had to stop him using them before it was too late, because one of the bombs had not been neutralized. This bomb was traced to London.
About the Author
Stuart Craigie was born in 1945 at the end of WWII in the North West Frontier province of war time India (now Pakistan); son of Major Ian Craigie of Scottish and Russian parentage. He is married, has adaughter and has lived and worked in Germany for the past twenty years. He holds dual British and German citizenship.
His early childhood was spent in Kenya East Africa. He finished his academic career studying Physics at University College London. After obtaining a B.Sc first class honors and Ph.D. degree he began research in high energy nuclear particle physics. Over the next fourteen years he published over eighty scientific works in major physics journals and proceedings of international conferences, His publications included two monographs and two books.(Most of his works can be found in the ww web under  “N S Craigie”)
During his research years he visited the Soviet Union and a number of east block countries attending symposiums, giving seminars and collaborating with east block physicists on joint projects. These experiences gave him a vivid impression of life behind the iron curtain during the cold war and brought him indirectly in contact with the KGB and East German Stasi, who were monitoring the scientists he had contact with.
In 1984 he left academia and entered industry as a developer of intelligent sensors for the automation industry. In his first four years he submitted and was granted six patents in the above mentioned field. In 1990 he took up a position as a senior executive of his last employer and became its joint CEO and Managing Director in 1994. One of his important tasks was chairman of the board of the directors of a joint venture company in Shanghai. Over a period ofsixteen years he visited and worked in China on numerous occasions.
As a frequent traveler over the years, visiting almost all continents, numerous countries, including most of the major cities around the world, he often took for leisure an exciting spy thriller novel from one or other of his favorite authors: Forsyth, le Carre, and Higgins. As time went on he had read most of their works as well the works of Follet, Clancy, Forbes and others, so that he found less and less to read. Ten years ago this gave him the motivation to write spy novels himself as part of a wider urge to write about life in general..
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