I’ve just republished THE CAMBODIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD, the first in the Detective Maier Mystery series, with Crime Wave Press (www.crimewavepress.com) as a Kindle. The second book THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN MIND will be out soon as well.
After the demise of Exhibit A Books, the original home of the Maier series, the rights of the two books reverted back to me, so Crime Wave Press, a Hong Kong based imprint I part own, was a natural platform to republish the books with.
THE CAMBODIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD follows German Detective Maier as he travels to Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s ramshackle capital, to find the heir to a Hamburg coffee empire.
As soon as the private eye and former war reporter arrives in Cambodia, his search for the young coffee magnate leads into the darkest corners of the country’s history and back in time, through the communist revolution to the White Spider, a Nazi war criminal who hides amongst the detritus of another nation’s collapse and reigns over an ancient Khmer temple deep in the jungles of Cambodia.
Maier, captured and imprisoned, is forced into the worst job of his life – he is to write the biography of the White Spider, a tale of mass murder that reaches from the Cambodian Killing Fields back to Europe’s concentration camps – or die.
In the second Maier Mystery, THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN MIND, Julia Rendel asks Maier to investigate the twenty-five year old murder of her father, an East German cultural attache who was killed near a fabled CIA airbase in central Laos in 1976. But before the detective can set off, his client is kidnapped right out of his arms. Maier follows Julia’s trail to the Laotian capital Vientiane, where he learns different parties, including his missing client are searching for a legendary CIA file crammed with Cold War secrets. But the real prize is the file’s author, a man codenamed Weltmeister, a former US and Vietnamese spy and assassin no one has seen for a quarter century.
I’ve just finished a first draft of a third Maier Mystery, THE MONSOON GHOST IMAGE which is set in Thailand. I’m very happy to bring this Southeast Asian trilogy to a close with a big bang. Maier 3 is set in 2003 and revolves around the CIA renditions program in the wake of 9/11. Maier is sent to Bangkok to find a famous German war photographer who died in a boating accident but surfaces, very much alive, months later in the Thai capital. Turns out the photographer snapped a frame that everyone wants to get their hands on – the CIA, Maier and a third mysterious party who has put a price of 2 million dollars on the elusive photo.
So I will be editing for the next couple of months. I really enjoyed writing this one. The character has become familiar and Thailand was a natural choice for the book’s main location, after Laos and Cambodia. As with the first two books in the series, I had a solid historical backdrop on which to build my story and the time I spent with Thailand’s sea gypsies in the late 90s served as rich material for part of the story. It’s been mad fun.
Bio: Tom Vater is a writer working predominantly in Asia and the co-owner of Crime Wave Press, a Hong Kong based English language crime fiction imprint.
He has published three crime novels, The Devil’s Road to Kathmandu, The Cambodian Book of the Dead, The Man with the Golden Mind.
In twenty years as a free lance journalist, he has worked for The Wall Street Journal, The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, Marie Claire, Geographical, Penthouse and countless other publications. He has published several non-fiction books, including the highly acclaimed Sacred Skin and he is co-author of several documentary screenplays, most notably The Most Secret Place on Earth, a feature on the CIA’s covert war in 1960s Laos.
THE CAMBODIAN BOOK OF THE DEAD:
One of the strange things about writing is that it happens in a solitary space. It’s not like building a house where you can watch the foundations being dug, the walls go up and the roof go on.
I say this because on the surface it may appear that I’ve done little over the last year or two. I can confirm that, though my graceful self has been gliding away on the smooth surface of the pond, I’ve been kicking my legs like crazy beneath the water.
I recently put out my new novel, The Shallows (US). In a nutshell, it tells the story of a sailor who goes AWOL and quickly lands his family in a whole heap of trouble. It’s a noir love story with undertones of a police procedural. I hope it touches on a few contemporary issues and some aspects of life that are universal and ever-present. This is new territory for me in some ways, but I hope that the strength of the story and the characters will have readers hooked until the very end. It was a lot of fun to write and I hope that it will be equally fun for you guys.
I also have a string of books in the hands of Blasted Heath to continue the Southsiders series. Book two, Jailhouse Rock, shouldn’t be long and three and four should appear later in the year.
My current work is out of my comfort zone. It’s the reworking of a short story of mine that I’m hoping will become a rather exciting New Adult Paranormal Romance of sorts. Suffice to say, I’m not entirely sure what I’m doing with this one, but it’s been one hell of an experience trying.
Other than that, I’m juggling my life as a teacher and father as best as I can.
Nigel Bird is the author of a number of novels, novellas and short story collections including Dirty Old Town, In Loco Parentis and Smoke.
After living in Los Angeles for decades, I moved to a small town in the Pacific Northwest last year. My new home is a beautiful place with urban waterfalls and haunted cemeteries and a genuine sense of community. To meet people, I started a mystery lovers’ book club that’s hosted by Village Bookstore, a great indie store that is very supportive of local writers as well as readers, and of the community in general. Dogs are welcome to come into the store with their owners, and there’s a little coffee place upstairs that looks out over the Bay, one of the best views in the city.
Ironically, I’d no sooner left Los Angeles than I started getting movie and TV work. I co-wrote a television pilot that’s going to shoot in Berlin, working with Icelandic playwright Jon Atli Jonasson and a group of Icelandic, German, and American producers. I did a quick (uncredited) rewrite of a fantasy movie and then, responding to a CraigsList ad, I ended up writing a science fiction movie called One Under the Sun. the movie, directed by Vincent Tran, has an international cast and is in post-production now. The filmmakers are shopping it to the film markets now, which is really exciting.
I’m not writing quite as many short stories as I used to because I’m trying to get longer works out there. I am writing noir-tinged stories about Hollywood for a website called “Hollywood Dementia” that’s run by legendary blogger Nikki Finke. During the 2007 writer’s strike, Nikki Finke was the Writers Guild’s best friend, and just about the only reliable source of information about what was going on. I’m thrilled to be one of the writers on the site because she’s got huge names—Eric Idle, Michael Tolkin—contributing.
Increasingly, I’m writing a lot of fantasy and science fiction and romance under my pseudonym “Kat Parrish.” (Parrish is my middle name so I’m not making a secret identity out of it.) The fantasy romance is what’s selling best for me at the moment, and I’ve become enamored of the idea of rewriting fairy tales with a modern spin. My first novelette in that series, Fashionista, was published at Christmas; it’s a retelling of Cindrella. Hunter’s Kiss, a retelling of Snow White, will be out next month, as will two more fantasy novellas, Starcasterand Tears of Idrissa.
Other than the writing, I hope to do more traveling this year. I went to Tucson for the Gem & Mineral Show there—like Comic Con for jewelry makers—and will be going to Portland for the Rose City Convention. I also hope to visit Iceland this summer when those cheap fares to Europe kick in. What’s up with you?
Bio: Katherine Tomlinson was born in Washington DC and has lived in seven different states and two different foreign countries (so far). A former reporter who prefers making things up, she writes crime and horror fiction under her own name; fantasy, romance, and science fiction under the name “Kat Parrish.” Her short fiction has appeared in a number of anthologies and her story “Water Sports” was a 2011 Pushcart Prize nominee. A collection of her urban fantasy stories, L.A. Nocturne Collection, was published in February.
Thanks to Mike Monson, Chris Rhatigan and Rob Pierce my debut book, Route 12, is now available. Route 12 is actually two novellas. One is set in 1970s Appalachia. It’s the story of a broken, angry, young man, and the vengeance he brings to a small town in the chilly, isolated mountains. The second novella is Blood and Sin and follows a lonely pregnant teen, a charismatic preacher, and a woman who is much more than she appears. With brutal, tragic consequences, their paths converge in a small white church deep in rural Carolina.
“Whether it is meant to be or not, Route 12 is poignantly, compellingly important.”– Greg Barth, Selena. Kind words from an incredible writer.
April 26 I will be hosting Authors on the Air, Dames of the Dark podcast. The show will feature established female writers as well as up and comers in the dark and dangerous genres. Laura Benedict, author of The Bliss House Series featuring the newest Cold Alone, will be joining ua. As will Jessica Hillier of Freak, The Butcher, and Wonderland fame. Nancy Cole Silverman, of the Carol Childs Mystery series, will be on hand as well. Nicky Murphy will join us to read her punch to the gut story, Daddy’s Girl. My special co-host will be Michelle Turlock Isler. Often called Godmother by authors of the crime, mystery and noir worlds she is an expert on all things thrilling. Gonna be fun. April 26, 9:00pm
Bio: Marietta Miles has published stories with Thrills, Kills and Chaos, Flash Fiction Offensive, Yellow Mama and Revolt Daily. She has been included in anthologies available through Static Movement Publishing and Horrified Press. Please visit www.mariettamiles.blogspot.com or Facebook for more stories and further information. Her first novel will be available in spring 2016 through All Due Respect Books. Born in Alabama, raised in Louisiana, she currently resides in Virginia with her husband and two children.
‘Black Moon Rising’ is a DRUNK ON THE MOON yarn which gives a bit more back story to Detective Ivan Walker and Duffy.
The full cast list for WEIRD NOIR is :
A Kick in the Head by Chloë Yates
Violets and Furs by Richard Godwin
Sins of the Brother by Karina Fabian
Across the Border by Hector Acosta
Corkscrewed by Jan Kozlowski
East of Écarté by Andrez Bergen
3 Kings and The Mark by Carol Borden
Black Moon Rising by Paul D. Brazill
[untitled] by Katherine Tomlinson
A Diabolical Liberty by Jason Michel
Evil and Life by Asher Wismer
Gus Weatherbourne by Michael S. Chong
Wonder Woman Walks into a Bar by Leeyanne Moore
Charred Kraken with Plum Butter by Christopher L. Irvin
Yao Jin by Joyce Chng
Train Tracks by W. P. Johnson
Find out more about WEIRD NOIR at K A Laity’s gin joint.
‘What a great idea! Create a particular character—Roman Dalton, ex-cop, current P.I., current werewolf… and let him go on the mean streets. Invite some of the best noir writers on the planet to ride this horse… Paul D. Brazill is the guy who’s doing more than almost anyone in energizing the noir genre and this is an innovative and important step in what looks to be a massive B12 shot.
The first story, Paul D. Brazill’s title story of this amazing collection, “Drunk on the Moon” is a veritable feast of language flavours, just as you always expect and always get from the Godfather of Noir. Brazill puts the story of ex-cop-cum-detective-cum-werewolf Roman Dalton into motion in a battle with other werewolves, zombies and human criminals.
Allan Leverone then takes comes through brilliantly, taking the ball quarterback Brazill hands off to him and running with it like a star fullback. Enter a mysterious federal agent—Agent Darke (aptly named) and the complications begin to cram through the doorway as nonstop action and mayhem erupt in a clash of werewolves and criminals.
Next B R Stateham delivers the philosophical side of Dalton—he’s his own “Death Squad” in ridding the world of those who don’t contribute to the common good by his choice of victims when in his werewolf state, and Stateham also creates the element of sex, always a good thing in a story. Stateham delivers one image I wasn’t expecting of Dalton—he’s a quiche eater… I’m still trying to reconcile that with his werewolf/tough cop persona…
The next story up, “It’s a Curse” by K. A. Laity is a writer’s delight. Like Brazill, Laity knocks your socks off with the language and also with the dialog. She also delivers a sex scene that leaves the reader alternately grimacing in pain and fantasizing about rough sex. Really rough sex… It’s the dialog that grabs you more than anything. Brilliant.
John Donald Carlucci enters next with his take on Dalton in a tale titled “Silver Tears.” Carlucci gets my nod for the best opening sentence of any of the stories, beginning with: “Jesus, I think I stepped on an ear,” I said after nearly slipping and falling as I entered the taped-off crime scene. It instantly transported me into the story and I wasn’t disappointed. You won’t be either. Not to give away the story, but it involves a pervert that wants Dalton to bite him so he can become a vampire, and Dalton accommodates him… but with a twist. You don’t want to miss the twist!
Julia Madeleine with her offering, “Fear the Night,” gets Dalton out of England and over to Quebec,Canada where he has a go with zombie strippers. If anyone doubts the veracity of zombie strippers, don’t. I’ve been to Quebec and it’s true.
Jason Michel weighs in with “Back to Nature” where Dalton takes a vacation in the woods with his friend Duffy the bartender. This was a delightful experience and the best way I can describe it is it’s a stream-of-conscious cinematic experience that reads like poetry.
And then… Richard Godwin with his version of Roman Dalton the werewolf he’s titled, “Getting High on Daisy..” All I can say about this one is this. WOW. This one was my favourite. Just brilliant writing. Every writer in this collection is the very best of writers working today. But, Godwin went somewhere else with this one. A place very few of us are ever privileged to reach. This one was Jungian in the best sense as in the night dream level of story-telling. This one by itself is worth the price of the entire collection.
And, just when I thought nothing could match Godwin’s story, I ran smack into Katherine Tomlinson’s “A Fire in the Blood.” Here’s what I have to say about her tale. Read it. I wasn’t familiar with her work before, but this story convinced me to run out and buy every word of hers that’s for sale. It’s that frickin’ good! Good writing should provide surprises and believe me—this one did! On every page. Before I read “A Fire in the Blood” I’d conferred the title of “best story in the collection” to Godwin. This one doesn’t supplant his, but it’s the co-winner, imo.
And then we come to the finale, Brazill’s “Before the Moon Falls” his prequel to the collection. Brilliant. Just like the collection itself. I cannot remember a more consistently great collection of stories like this. “Drunk on the Moon” is going to end up on a lot of “Best of” lists at the end of the year. An awful lot of those lists… It’s already on mine.
Once you read it, I wager it’ll be on yours.’