Tag Archives: mystery

Counting on Trust – Tour

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Mystery  / Suspense
Publication date: Print and ebook, May 2017. Audiobook, November 2019
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In this suspense-charged, touching novel, Counting on Trust, information is stolen from a U.S. genetic engineering company (Omniprotein) by an employee promised payment by a Chinese general who wants to profit from selling the company’s technologies in the military region of China he commands.
To force quick payment the thief attacks fellow employees and threatens to continue until his money arrives. Will his next targets be: young lovers, computer geek Gabriel and gorgeous biologist Selena, who are discovering loving sex while trying to overcome post-traumatic effects of Selena’s girlhood rape.
Company president, Eleanor, who’s determined to keep some privacy and intimacy although her job’s high profile and her husband, Charley, has just had prostate cancer surgery.
Venture capitalist, John, who plans to duplicate Omniprotein’s facility in China and reunite with his ex-wife, fashion designer Ziyi, who returned to Shanghai after their only child died.
The personal stories of these couples explore how privacy, intimacy and trust are changing in our social-media age. They paint a compelling portrait of our time.

EXCERPT

Joanne reached the bottom of the fire stairs and went down the dock, trailing her right hand along the brick wall of the plant to keep her bearings. Although she’d seen several of the demonstrations in which swimmers played games with the creatures in the lake and knew they wouldn’t harm her deliberately if she fell in, she wanted nothing to do with the “unnatural brutes,” as Mom called them. Near the entrance to the viewing pavilion more steps led down to the sand where Chase had said he’d be waiting to guide her to the place he’d made ready.

At the end of the building she angled toward the pavilion and suddenly there he was. She reached out to the darker shadow of his body and the yearning she felt when she wasn’t with him turned to happiness. But in the same moment part of her held back; although this was Chase, her sweet lover, his body was stiff, unwelcoming. Then everything was all right when he pulled her against his familiar bulk and his erection poked her belly.

He breathed in her ear, “You’re here oh God you’re finally here” as he guided her into the pavilion, evidently unwilling in his urgency to go down to the beach to make love as he’d said they would. Flattered, she let him take her with him to the floor, her body supple with desire, yet she remained somewhat anxious. But she was being held with gentleness as if she were precious to him and she realized he was trembling, almost shuddering with tension. Amazed she could have such an effect, she stroked his cheek.

He pulled back from her, still whispering, “I’ve been waiting so long, this has to go well, you mustn’t be frightened.”

“I’m not frightened,” she assured him, also whispering to share his intensity. Her other hand found his penis. She might have expected he’d already have put on a condom. He always planned ahead.

At her touch he inhaled sharply and jerked away. “No, we mustn’t hurry,” he said, his voice strangled. He reached past her and fumbled for something in the darkness. 

The smell of chocolate reached her and she giggled because she’d had the same idea but had left her thermos of hot chocolate on the railing at the top of the fire stairs. She was touched he’d brought her favorite beverage.

“I know how much you love this.” He slid a hand beneath her head to raise it and held a cup to her lips. “I tried to make it the way you like it but it seems very strong. Tell me it doesn’t taste bitter.”

Needing him, trembling now as he was but respectful of his self-control and kindness in not wanting to rush her, she took a deep swallow. The chocolate had cooled and tasted unpleasant. It wasn’t bitter but had a heavy, artificial citrus undertaste. He must have used the mix he’d been bringing to motels so she could have hot chocolate for breakfast. Because he’d bought it for her especially she hadn’t told him she didn’t care for it or that she hadn’t opened the container of it he’d given her to take to the break room in the security office. Tonight he’d made the chocolate much too strong.

Propped on an elbow she drained the cup to show appreciation for his thoughtfulness in bringing it and avoid giving him an excuse for further delay. “It’s delicious,” she said.

As she took the cup from his hand to put it beside her on the floor, she realized he had on plastic gloves; that was why his hand behind her head felt strange against her neck. Her mobile was gone. Could it have slipped out of its holster? Had he taken it? Alarmed now, she reached for her baton but she was lying on it. She tried to sit up, pushing a hand against his solid torso.

“Stop that,” he said in a hard voice she’d never heard from him. He forced her flat and lowered himself onto her. His erection poked her leg. He was heavy; she couldn’t move. She tried to scream although no one would hear her, to pull her hands free to jam her thumbs in his eyes the way she’d been taught in self-defense practice but she felt drowsy and her arms and legs lacked strength. José, help me, she thought. José was home in bed, sick.

Chase raised his body from hers but pinned her hands on the floor and rested a knee on her legs, as if waiting for something. She had to get free of him; she didn’t like this. Sometimes he did such dumb things. She was very angry.

The anger passed as she began to understand. He’d given her something to help her enjoy sex more; that was it. Whatever it was had lifted her into a daze in which she didn’t care that the floor was dirty and stank of mold or that the citrus undertaste of the chocolate lingered in her mouth and made her feel like vomiting. She couldn’t help it, she was drifting off. 

She awoke—immediately she thought—trying to get her breath. He still was holding her down. She tried to push him away but fell asleep.

She awoke again because she needed to cough but couldn’t. Breathing was so hard now, why was that? She felt lightheaded and had to sleep some more. . . .

Her lungs wouldn’t expand; this was the worst feeling she’d ever had. What was happening? Why did he keep holding her down when he should be doing something to help her breathe? Fighting to pull air into her lungs and stay awake, again she made another effort to free herself. He was heavy, strong, she couldn’t breathe, she had to sleep. As she lost consciousness her mouth formed the words, “Don’t do this, I love you,” but no sound came.

About the Author

Themes of novels by M. Ferguson Powers reflect the author’s varied interests, including preservation of the natural world and its creatures;

·         Challenges of building and maintaining loving relationships in a culture with decreasing respect for personal boundaries and privacy
·         Influences of globalization on world events and how the U. S. and other nations relate to one another
·         Public policy issues such as controlling the military-industrial-political complex and requiring the health care industry to be more respectful of its clients
·         The need for cooperation across governments, cultures, and societies to address global challenges such as climate change
·         Developments in business and university administration and management
Powers has taught microbiology, headed a university office of research, served as executive director of two university-business partnership programs, and co-authored two books on university administration. She has a bachelor of science degree in bacteriology from The Pennsylvania State University, a master’s in experimental psychology from George Mason University, and a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul.
She lives on an island near Seattle with her husband David R. Powers and their two shelties. Her first novel, Each Unique and Fascinating, about a bullied young girl whose father has gone to war, was published in 2012.  OrcaSpeak, a novel of relationships and suspense, was published in 2013, and its prequel, Counting on Trust, was published in 2017.
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The Adults in the Room Blitz

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A Tim Hall Mystery
Mystery, Thriller
Published: June 2019
Publisher: The Good As Gone Group
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Retired CIA officer Tim Hall drinks heavily to forget the few troubles he can actually remember. Still suffering from the car crash that killed his wife and stole his memories, he volunteers for a medical trial to recover the mysteries of his past. But after he wakes from a blackout lasting days, he’s convinced two sinister men are hunting him down…
Relieved by the familiar face of his biker girlfriend, he’s shocked to learn her true identity and the devastating secrets about his accident. And soon he’s swept up in a deadly mission that could decimate American politics. But unsure if can trust his own mind, his dangerous new role may be patriotic—or treasonous.
Can Hall fill in the blanks of his fractured memory before his choices turn fatal?
The Adults in the Room is the first book in the high-octane Tim Hall Mystery series. If you like stunning revelations, deep state conspiracies, and a touch of romance, then you’ll love Jeffrey Mechling’s mind-bending thriller!
Buy The Adults in the Room to fire up an electrifying adventure today!
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About the Author

Jeffrey Mechling was born in Alexandria Virginia to a family full of secrets. His maternal grandfather was thought to be an original member of the OSS [The Office of Strategic Services].
Other members of the Mechling and Emerson families, as well as family friends, lived within the shadowy world of espionage and would only revealed that they “worked for the government”.
Mr. Mechling himself has worked as a Financial Economist and Operations Research Analyst with a not too secret government agency.
Jeff has written two novels – The Adults in the Room and The Safe House. Both feature super spy couple Tim Hall and Mary Ann Wilson. He is currently writing a third Tim Hall and Mary Ann Wilson adventure.
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Counting on Trust Blitz

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Counting on Trust cover
Mystery  / Suspense
Publication date: Print and ebook, May 2017. Audiobook, November 2019
 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png
In this suspense-charged, touching novel, Counting on Trust, information is stolen from a U.S. genetic engineering company (Omniprotein) by an employee promised payment by a Chinese general who wants to profit from selling the company’s technologies in the military region of China he commands.
To force quick payment the thief attacks fellow employees and threatens to continue until his money arrives. Will his next targets be: young lovers, computer geek Gabriel and gorgeous biologist Selena, who are discovering loving sex while trying to overcome post-traumatic effects of Selena’s girlhood rape.
Company president, Eleanor, who’s determined to keep some privacy and intimacy although her job’s high profile and her husband, Charley, has just had prostate cancer surgery.
Venture capitalist, John, who plans to duplicate Omniprotein’s facility in China and reunite with his ex-wife, fashion designer Ziyi, who returned to Shanghai after their only child died.
The personal stories of these couples explore how privacy, intimacy and trust are changing in our social-media age. They paint a compelling portrait of our time.
About the Author

Themes of novels by M. Ferguson Powers reflect the author’s varied interests, including preservation of the natural world and its creatures;

·         Challenges of building and maintaining loving relationships in a culture with decreasing respect for personal boundaries and privacy
·         Influences of globalization on world events and how the U. S. and other nations relate to one another
·         Public policy issues such as controlling the military-industrial-political complex and requiring the health care industry to be more respectful of its clients
·         The need for cooperation across governments, cultures, and societies to address global challenges such as climate change
·         Developments in business and university administration and management
Powers has taught microbiology, headed a university office of research, served as executive director of two university-business partnership programs, and co-authored two books on university administration. She has a bachelor of science degree in bacteriology from The Pennsylvania State University, a master’s in experimental psychology from George Mason University, and a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul.
She lives on an island near Seattle with her husband David R. Powers and their two shelties. Her first novel, Each Unique and Fascinating, about a bullied young girl whose father has gone to war, was published in 2012.  OrcaSpeak, a novel of relationships and suspense, was published in 2013, and its prequel, Counting on Trust, was published in 2017.
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Audible coming soon
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Power Lies Blitz

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Mystery / Thriller
Publisher: Elite Online Publishing
Date Published: 12-10-2019
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Power Lies is a captivating thriller about power lines that kill and a corrupt industry that knows it. Follow Sterling Barrington, Public Relations Vice President for The Franklin Energy Institute, as she investigates this cover-up from within the bowels of the beast. The Institute’s archives lead Barrington to a retiree ready to reveal the industry’s lies. But he ends up dead before confessing. Sterling’s continued hunt for proof results in her being accused of murder, arrested, threatened, assaulted, and nearly assassinated. Despite these tribulations, she remains determined to expose the corruption and reveal the truth.
Excerpt
“The balcony door blew shut startling the young woman as she zipped up her black silk cocktail dress. Strong winds signaled oncoming storms. Tall and slender, Sterling Barrington, was getting ready for a date with Congressman Trevor Reese. She slipped on red leather heels and clicked across the dark wood floor, reopening the door. Lightning illuminated the skies. The enemy of power lines. Across from her apartment building, twilight settled over the  glistening headstones of Arlington Cemetery. She heard Taps being played at the Iwo Jima Memorial nearby.
Sterling never tired of these sights and sounds. It reminded  her that she wasn’t alone in tragically losing a loved one. A young boy’s smile flashed through her mind. She smoothed her long red hair and wiped tears away from her blue eyes.
While touching up her makeup, Sterling recalled how disappointing her trip to Baltimore had been. She wanted Harry Brown to have all the answers about electromagnetic fields (also known as EMFs), their tie to cancer, and the denial of said tie by the electric industry. Her industry.
 She needed the truth.”
About the Author

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Jana Laird Phillips is a native Texan, who has lived and worked in Dallas, Washington DC and Houston. She is a BBA graduate of Baylor University with a double major in Marketing and Journalism. Ms. Phillips worked in the Energy Industry for several years, and has numerous articles published in Energy trade journals. She is currently the publisher/owner of an online magazine, www.houstonhipandhaute.com
Ms. Phillips enjoys travel and resides with her husband in Houston, TX.
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Death in Trout Fork Blitz

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Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries, Book One
Cozy Mystery, Mystery
Published: October 2018
Publisher: Black Opal Books
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Kathryn “Ryn” Lowell has escaped the stifling confines of her office at the New York travel magazine she writes for and pulls into Trout Fork, a tiny fishing hamlet in the Colorado Rockies, to write an article about the town. She hasn’t been there long when, out jogging with her orange tabby cat, Jack Kerouac, she discovers a T-shirt in the local creek that belonged to missing waitress. Now foul play is suspected, and Ryn, who has fallen for the quaint mountain town, is determined to find the killer and give her new friends closure. Teaming up with the local police detective, who seems to want more than Ryn can give him, she puts it all on the line—her heart, her job, and her life.
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Other Books In The Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries Series:
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The Mountaintop Murders
Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries, Book Two
Published: May 2019
Travel columnist, Ryn Lowell, has been away from Trout Fork, Colorado, for barely a month when a frantic call from Alma sends her hurrying back. One of the Trout Forkers is in jail for the murder of another of the locals. With Jack, her “traveling cat,” secured on her motorcycle, Ryn heads back to her home away from home and the people she has come to care for.
Will Ryn be able to help solve the murder? Can she get her friend out of jail? And what about Detective Garrett Easterbrook? Why isn’t he on the case? Everyone knows something has been bothering him lately, but what can it be? Is there still a spark between him and Ryn? Will it become a flame or peter out?
The Mountaintop Murders is the exciting sequel to Death in Trout Fork.
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A Killing in Vail
Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries, Book Three
Published: November 2019
Kathryn “Ryn” Lowell is settling into her new job as editor of the Pineland Park Star when she is shocked to read of the sudden death of a dear friend from her childhood. Shot while skiing near the posh town of Vail, Colorado, the young man’s death is ruled an unfortunate hunting accident by the Vail police. But something about the incident just doesn’t add up, and Ryn is determined to find the truth. But asking too many questions can be dangerous. Will Ryn be able to solve yet another murder? Will her “snooping” put her life in danger once again?
What about Garrett? Is he still waiting patiently for Ryn to commit to him? Or is the beautiful new policewoman in his precinct becoming a distraction?
A Killing in Vail is the third book in the exciting Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries series
 
Excerpt
DEATH IN TROUT FORK
by Dolores Kimball (writing as D. M. O’Byrne)
Jack and I jogged along the trail behind the cabins just before sunrise the next morning. The sky was lightening, but the mountains blocked the sun’s rays, and the path was shrouded in near darkness. Jack trotted along next to me in his harness, his paws making no sound on the soft bed of pine needles that covered the trail surface. We stopped for a breather near the rock I had sat on the previous day, and I noticed Gil about fifty yards away, standing hip deep in the creek in his waders, casting his line upstream and watching it float by. He looked up briefly at me, then he turned away again.
I waited for Jack, who was digging in the dirt next to the trail, no doubt looking for a convenient place for a potty stop. After a few minutes, he was still digging, so I pulled on his leash. “C’mon, Jack. Let’s go.”
But he resisted and continued digging, growling and becoming more and more agitated. I pulled on the leash again, harder this time, but he wouldn’t budge.
I bent over and picked him up. “Okay, if you insist.”
I peered down at the hole he had made. Something didn’t seem quite right. I squatted to get a closer look, the cat squirming in my arms. I gasped and jumped back, lost my balance, and sat down hard. The taste of adrenaline flooded my mouth as I stared at three fingers protruding from the hole, the bright purple nail polish absurdly out of place among the rust-colored pine needles.
About the author:

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D.M. O’Byrne’s first job was as a waitress. Now she’s a writer of mystery novels. In between, jobs included English teacher, racehorse exerciser, jockey, accountant, golf resort assistant manager, writer, and editor. Her places of residence ranged from the Jersey Shore to a lengthy sojourn in California, and finally to the Colorado Rockies. Each profession, each location was rife with life lessons, fascinating characters, potential plot lines, and wide-ranging experiences. Sooner or later, they will all end up on the written page.
O’Byrne is the author of the Ryn Lowell Colorado Mysteries series—Death in Trout Fork, The Mountaintop Murders, and A Killing in Vail. She has also written Dangerous Turf and the sequel, Three to One Odds.
D.M. lives in Colorado Springs with her husband and their cat, Warnie. They spend much of their time riding bikes and enjoying the scenery. Warnie spends his time watching the bunnies out the window, lounging on the sofa, and trying to catch his tail.
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