Phoenix investigative reporter Joya Bonner is like most Americans—she knows nothing about the world of sex trafficking; thinks it’s a problem reserved for somewhere far off. Thailand. Russia.
But the reality that this is an American problem slaps her in the face when her 15 year-old honorary niece disappears in Phoenix. And a 13 year-old from her hometown in North Dakota goes missing. And there’s that pitiful dead girl in the vacant lot. As the evidence piles up that these are all part of the sex-slave underworld, Joy’s awakening chills her to the bone.
She’s sickened even more when she realizes the website that pimps use to sell these girls was created in Phoenix at the weekly newspaper New Times—by guys she knew; by journalists she admired; by men she’d defended in the pages of her own newspaper when they were attacked by Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Joya’s frantic search to find the missing girls—and identify the dead child—brings readers into the real world of sex trafficking. It includes the true history of Backpage.com, that’s been called an “online brothel,” and its founders, Mike Lacey and Jim Larkin, currently awaiting trial on charges of facilitating sex trafficking.
This book combines a riveting fictional story with the reality that is ripped from today’s headlines. The book ends with an extensive “end notes” section that details the facts and personalities of this world—both from those exploiting youngsters for prostitution, and those who have long fought to stop it.
About the Author
Jana Bommersbach is one of Arizona’s most acclaimed journalists and authors. She’s already been honored with two lifetime achievement awards as “an inspiration to the state’s media community.” She’s been inducted into the Arizona Arts and Entertainment Hall of Fame, and honored by the ACLU as a “journalist and activist who speaks truth to power.” She’s won a regional Emmy for her television work and was named the nation’s best columnist in a city magazine for her work at Phoenix magazine. She twice won the Don Bolles Award in Investigative Reporting for her work at Phoenix New Times.
Jana is known as a tenacious researcher and lyrical writer. Her debut non-fiction book, “The Trunk Murderess: Winnie Ruth Judd” was nominated for the prestigious Edgar Allan Poe Award as one of the nation’s best mysteries in 1992. Her children’s book, “A Squirrel’s Story, a True Tale” won numerous awards here and abroad. Her first historical novel, “Cattle Kate,” was named one of the best books of 2014 by Publisher’s Weekly. With “thedeadgirlinthevacantlot,” Jana continues exploring the world of fiction with her character, Phoenix investigative reporter Joya Bonner.
To satisfy her journalistic soul, Jana combines a fictional story with real-life incidents she’s covered in the past. In her first Joya Bonner book, “Funeral Hotdish,” it was the problem of Sammy “the Bull” Gravano and his Arizona ecstasy ring and how it affected Joya’s safe, secure hometown in North Dakota that buried one of its children from a drug overdose. In this new book, Joya takes on the world of sex-trafficking. As the book was going to press, federal officials shut down the “online brothel” known as Backpage.com and its founders—Mike Lacey and Jim Larkin—were arrested and are awaiting trial on multiple counts of facilitating sex-trafficking.
This is a particularly poignant story for Jana to write, for a dozen years before Backpage was created, she was partners with Mike and Jim in owning Phoenix New Times. She left and sold her interest to pursue other journalistic options. As she says in the Epilogue, “I write this book with a broken heart.”
Still at the beginning of her career, investigative journalist Emilee Weathers is desperate for the perfect story and doesn’t care how she has to get it. When she’s asked to assist in a convicted serial killer’s appeal, it almost seems the perfect story has come banging at her door.
But not long after arriving to the mountain town of Pigeon Forge, Emilee discovers the body of another, more recent victim. With the body showing signatures of the already-convicted murderer, Emilee sets out to discover if she’s happened upon the work of a copycat, or if the real killer was ever even caught. The more she looks though, the murkier everything becomes. Police begin withholding information and the killer seems capable of going any length to protect his identity. On top of it all, when her investigations uncover the buried secrets of those closest to her, Emilee questions who it is she can and can’t trust in those mountains, if anyone at all.
About the Author
Jordan Antonacci is an HVAC Technician by day and blogger by night, working out of the hot, hot lands of Dallas, Texas. When he isn’t trying to avoid heat stroke, he can be found at his desk with an espresso, brewing up a new story or a post for his blog. Outside of writing, Jordan has a mild case of wanderlust. He enjoys road trips, cruises, and flights out to California to visit his family. His dream is to make a living with writing and visit every country the world has to offer.
Series: A Jason and Mortyiene Mystery # 3 Genre: Fantasy, Mystery Publisher: Azure Spider Publications Publication Date: June 15, 2018
Jason and Mortyiene investigate the deaths of several priestesses
A priestess is dead hanging in an iron maiden.
The conclave of priestesses are meeting with new instructions from the goddess Levet.
A new floor is opening and the sealed rooms are scenes of horrific crimes discovered after the room opens. Jason and Mortyiene are called to investigate. Who is killing these women? Why? Does this have anything to do with the ongoing war?
To complicate things further, the sky rangers led by general Valairia, war mistress of the Kylvar are in town to fight a rampaging dragon. There is well known animosity between the clergy and Valairia. These spats erupt into battles as the general assumes privileges not granted to her.
Don’t miss another exciting book in The Jason and Mortyiene Mysteries.
Perequin reached for the scalpel. With trembling hands she brought it to her side. The blade skittered across her stitches. Maybe she could wipe it off. Nothing else was in reach of her.
That sound filled her with dread. She screamed and drove the blade into her side, nicking it on the key. A wave of dizziness washed over her, the corrosive poison gnawed at her side. Blood poured over her hand, her grasp becoming slick.
Her fingers slipped on the blood-soaked key but she drew it out carefully. Her fingers, now numb from the poison, fumbled and the key slipped from her grasp. Desperately she felt around with her toe, trying to grip the key and bring it back to her lock. She caught the key on her big toe and started to lift it to her hand. The toe and hand met. She clutched at the key, but it slipped through her fingers, falling to the floor again.
She clenched her teeth. The wound bled freely, dripping down her thigh. She struggled and reached for the key again.
The room shuddered once more. A door appeared before her eyes. Screaming for her goddess’s forgiveness, she struggled, and, with a click, the iron maiden slammed closed.
“Game over,” the voice echoed in the stillness of the room.
Book Tour Schedule
Follow the book tour from June 15 – 28, 2018.
Join us and visit each tour stop daily! Discover more features, excerpts, reviews, interviews, fun facts and other extras about the book. To check the latest tour schedule, visit the The Priestesses of Levet Book Page at Book Unleashed.
Other Books by Victoria Lynn Osborne
Jason is young wizard sent to the Library there he learns he is the new investigator assigned to investigate crimes in the library and important crimes in the surrounding lands. Unfortunately he is given the darkly beautiful Mortyiene as a partner and the cat Edwardynah. He must not onlysolve crimes but keep Mortyiene in line and deal with his severe cat allergies.
About Victoria Lynn Osborne
Victoria has been involved in writing since she was a child. She has her Bachelors in Creative Writing and is getting her Masters. She lives in southern Oregon catering to the whims of her muse which takes the form of a fuzzy black and white cat.
But now in another life where nothing is what it seems and against great odds, he has a chance to make things right.
In the 21st century, wars are won in the mind rather than on battlefields.
One man – a sorcerer disguised as solder – will forever alter American history with black magic!
Major Stacey Truman Keogh is a specialist in psychological operations and a terrorist disguised in military uniform. Both ambitious and evil, he will do anything to further his interests whether sacrificing the operatives under his command, his family and even his only son. In the end, will he discover spiritual redemption and use his immense magical powers in the service of good? Can a grand technological miracle save the son he betrayed, so long ago?
About the Author
In just his first year as an independent author, Massachusetts native Stephen Perkins’ thrilling, entertaining, imaginative, thought provoking and sometimes controversial novels Sorcerers’ Dynasty, Raging Falcon, American Siren and Escape to Death have fast gained a loyal and rabid audience. While enjoying the books, be sure to check out Newsspellcom.org for a unique perspective on the news of the world one shall not surely discover anywhere else! Or, stop by on Twitter (Twitter.com@RAGEOFWORDS)
When English professor Lam Corso receives a death threat at work, he laughs it off. A liberal activist teaching at a small Southern conservative college, he’s used to stirring up controversy on campus. It’s just part of the give and take of life. Even when violently attacked, Lam is convinced it has to be a mistake. He can’t imagine anyone who would want to kill him for his beliefs.
When his home is broken into and his wife’s business vandalized, Lam is forced to face facts. The police can’t find a single lead. Lam’s wife—a passionate anti-gun crusader—is outraged when Lam brings a gun into the house for protection. Left to their own devices, Lam and Susan must examine their marriage, faith, and values in the face of a carefully targeted attack from an assailant spurred into action by a different set of beliefs.
What will it cost to survive?
In the silence immediately after Susan screamed, Simon’s high wail came from upstairs. Billy’s voice broke through, “Mom? What happened, Mom?” His voiced moved to the top of the stairs. “Mama, I’m scared. Where are you?” Simon was sobbing.
Susan grabbed the flashlight and scrambled to her feet. The darkness of the room pressed in on her, weighted with threat, the silence in the downstairs smothering her voice. She shined the flashlight toward the stairway, heading that way, and yelled, “Boys, can you see the light from the flashlight?”
She flicked the light around the room, and seeing nobody, she yelled again, with less panic this time, “Nothing to be afraid of, Billy. I’m sorry I scared you. You and Simon come on downstairs right now.” She shined the light on the stairway steps, fear crawling up her spine from the darkness behind her.
About the Author
Gary Guinn was a liberal professor at a conservative college. The idea for this book came from actual events early in his teaching career. He lives in the southern Ozark Mountains with his wife, Mary Ann, and their two dogs. He loves to read, write, walk, travel, and brew beer (and of course drink it). His short fiction has been published in literary magazines and anthologies. Sacrificial Lam is his second novel.