Posted in reviews

The Ocean Raiders by Jackson Coppley Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

Nicholas Fox returns as a mysterious artifact tied to the ocean and the death of a close friend lead him to a mysterious villain named Frost and a group of assassins in author Jackson Coppley’s “The Ocean Raiders”. 

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The Synopsis

More Action and Adventure

With

Nicholas Foxe and His Team of Code Hunters

Nicholas Foxe jets to Venice to spend time with an old flame. Expecting romance, Nick instead finds himself immersed in murder and intrigue.

Nevin Dowd, a billionaire who owns a number of high-tech companies, is in Venice to help save the city from the next big flood. His underwater excavation work uncovers a mysterious object with curious markings. He calls on Nick to decipher the code.

In Istanbul, British intelligence discovers an ancient letter which tells of a machine hidden in the ocean that can draw massive power from seawater, but at enormous risk. Is this seawater energy machine connected to the object Nick is trying to decipher?

In Switzerland, Nick’s team guards a device that contains advanced knowledge, including details of the seawater energy machine. A group of assassins working for someone known only as Frost, attempts to steal it. Who is Frost, and is he responsible for the murder of someone close to Nick?

Can Nick and his team of code hunters get to the machine first before it destroys Venice?

The Review

One of the hardest things an author can do is not only maintain but capitalize on the momentum of a first novel and put it all into the sequel, and yet that is exactly what author Jackson Coppley has done. The action, the intrigue and the mystery all came together naturally and left me as a reader on the edge of my seat. 

The author equally balances the sci-fi and historical action and mythology with great character development in this sequel. The shocking turn of events through the novel keeps readers invested in the protagonist Nick Fox’s journey, and the reveal of the mysterious Frost will leave readers floored as the nefarious actions of the criminal are revealed. 

The Verdict

An evenly paced action-adventure and science fiction narrative, author Jackson Coppley does a marvelous job of upping the stakes and drama of this harrowing historical fiction/sci-fi series with “The Ocean Raiders”. Full of intrigue, romantic promise, heartbreak and unimaginable threats, this is the perfect summer thriller for fans of a good action-adventure read, so be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Jackson Coppley, a consummate storyteller, illuminates in his writing what happens when technology intersects with human behavior and emotion. Coppley weaves his stories from a sophisticated knowledge of technology and an understanding of human behavior. Coppley’s resume includes a dynamic career with leading world communications and technology companies, and the launching of what the press called “a revolutionary software program” during the rise of personal computing. As a world traveler, Coppley developed an interest in and an understanding of cultural differences and nuances which play an important role in his stories. His YouTube video on the Hmong people of Vietnam, as an example of how he investigates other cultures, received thousands of hits. It is this sensitivity about human behavior combined with the understanding of the potential of technology that brings to his writing a glimpse of what is yet to come.

Facebook Author Page: www.facebook.com/jcoppley

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jcoppley

Website: www.JacksonCoppley.com

Check out this amazing review over at Author Anthony Avina’s Blog!

Posted in reviews

The Tech by Mark Ravine Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A young FBI agent takes charge of a new team, and discovers that a series of new cases are mysteriously tied to a shadowy organization in author Mark Ravine’s novel, “The Tech”. 

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The Synopsis

Alexandra has just taken charge of her new team, a motley crew of screw-ups at the Arizona Field Office, the latest in a series of forgettable assignments. With a history of rebelling against authority and blunt speaking, she vows to change her ways and make this assignment work.

Within minutes of her taking charge, she is drawn into a bank robbery case. She leads her new team to catch the robbers but discovers that there is much more to the case than meets the eye. The very next day three girls go missing. Before they could be trafficked out of the country, she races against time to rescue them. Soon, she begins to realize that all the cases coming her way are mysteriously connected. As she unravels the threads of a massive conspiracy, she discovers that a secret organization with immense power and authority is behind these horrific crimes. Forces within the FBI thwart her every move to discover the truth. Helping her navigate this maze is the shadowy Michael Patterson. But can she trust him? Can she trust anyone? Soon, witnesses disappear, suspects are killed, with her life and the lives of her team in lethal danger. Will she come out of this alive? Will she uncover and expose this cabal? As time starts running out, Alexandra Cassidy has to evade indictment and defy death in a deadly game of cat and mouse. 

The Review

The author has excelled in his debut novel. The characters are fully developed and do an amazing job of pulling the reader into the narrative as a whole. The complexity of the plot really keeps the intrigue and suspense of this FBI thriller alive, weaving together various cases and plots involving human trafficking, bank robberies and murder. 

The author does an amazing job of crafting a narrative that focuses on a tech-based approach to investigative work and yet makes it accessible and easy for the average reader to delve into, even venturing into sci-fi territory with the sophistication of the tech used in the investigations. Yet it is the character development that really shines the brightest in this novel, crafting a unique blend of suspense and bonding between the protagonist and the team of characters she finds herself surrounded by. 

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The Verdict

A must-read action-fueled thriller, author Mark Ravine’s “The Tech” is a smash hit debut novel. The author has put together a memorable cast of characters and an amazingly interwoven plot that ticks every box in the classic FBI thriller and takes it up several notches. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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The Poseidon Files by Mike Rickett Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A high octane thriller that blends the supernatural with science fiction and political thriller takes center stage in author Mike Rickett’s “The Poseidon Files”. 

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The Synopsis 

This is a story about conspiracies: A top-secret military plot which threatens humanity and another plot to leak the secret to the world. But it all backfires and two women find themselves in the centre of intrigue and menace.

The Streets of Liverpool and the picturesque village of Llanberis in Snowdonia, as well as the mountain itself, also play an atmospheric part in a tale of murder and deceit where the supernatural also plays a part.

A gripping supernatural thriller that will captivate you to the very last page.

The Review

A shocking yet fun genre mashup, author Mike Rickett delivers a stellar story and wonderful cast of characters that fans won’t soon forget. What begins as a government cover-up soon turns into a shocking mystery of death, visions, and a race against time as shadowy figures emerge and put two women brought together seemingly by fate into the crosshairs of a dangerous enemy. 

In a larger than life plot lie this, the author does a fantastic job of keeping the story as grounded as possible with memorable characters who keep the reader engaged. The quick friendship and bond between the protagonists in particular keep the reader invested as the story progresses. 

The Verdict

A one of a kind story that is filled with powerful drama, suspense and heart-pounding thrills, author Mike Rickett’s “The Poseidon Files” is a must-read thriller that never slows down. Entertaining and action-packed, the story’s final arc is an edge of your seat scene that will keep readers’ attention throughout its entirety. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Mike Rickett is a career journalist having worked for the London Daily Mail, Reuters and latterly the Liverpool Daily Post on Merseyside in the UK. In a long and varied career, he has worked as a crime reporter, feature writer, business editor and latterly, a senior sub-editor. He has also worked as a PR executive for a major bank and a multi- national electronics company.

His qualifications include a BA (Hons) English, from the University of Liverpool; a BA (Hons) Fine Art and an MA in Creative Practice both from Liverpool Hope University.

He has two children, a son in Tallinn, Estonia and a daughter in Toronto, Canada. He lives in Liverpool in the UK and divides his time between art and writing.

Posted in reviews

Night Sweats: How Moral Philosophy Failed by Michael Bernhart Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

In the final chapter of the Sally and Max Brown series, the protagonists face personal and professional hurdles as health scares and the dark horrors of the human organ trade come to light in author Michael Bernhart’s “Night Sweats: How Moral Philosophy Failed”. 

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The Synopsis

Advancing age brings its discomforts and challenges: failing health, concern over diminished appeal, loss of optimism – sometimes even hope. For Max and Sally Brown, it also brings an encounter with some of the most ruthless and unprincipled men on earth: recruiters and doctors who harvest and sell human organs.This, the final episode in the Max Brown series, provides a thrilling, and often disturbing, look inside the “red trade” in human body parts. The action is set against the backdrop of honor crimes against women, and takes place in Jordan and Switzerland.

The Review

A thrilling conclusion to the Sally and Max Brown series, the author presents a truly personal journey for both protagonists. The inspired use of journal entries for both characters to illustrate the ongoing nature of the narrative makes for an engaging way to bring the reader into the story. 

The weight of previous adventures with the characters within this series are shown and take their toll on the protagonists, as the most heinous and harrowing journey is set upon when a series of women who are victims of “honor” attacks begin to die, and soon Sally and Max are investigating the possibility of organ harvesting on the black market. When those they thought they could trust become suspect, the characters are pushed to their limits to find a way to bring justice to the Middle Eastern women who are consistently victimized and yet never spoken up for. The inclusion of a personal health scare for one of the characters and the tragedy of the past haunting the other makes the overall narrative much more engaging for the reader overall. 

The Verdict

A must-read final chapter in the action-thriller series, Night Sweats is a one of a kind tale of crimes against humanity, and the few people willing to step up to fight against it. By the book’s final pages readers will be left in shock as the final events begin winding down. This lengthy yet captivating read is filled with action, suspense and fantastic character development that readers will absolutely love. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Michael Bernhart is an award winning author who has published extensively on international development and public health. His credentials for this written outpouring are a PhD (from MIT!) and four decades of international work – currently 50 countries and counting.

The journey from writing funding proposals to writing pure fiction was short and easy. The result is the Max Brown tetralogy (plus 1) which traces the arc (from age 10 through 68) of a man who tries to be proactive, but whose behavior is driven by external events. Each of the five novels finds Max struggling with a new existential crisis – or crises – as he grows up in these trying times. Manhood used to be a birthright; now it seems to be an unending series of challenges. Each novel also finds Max confronting a new face of evil.

The novels occupy an emerging genre provisionally dubbed ‘philosophical thrillers.’

Dr. (why not use it?) Bernhart started this project before the internet could serve up virtual experiences to authors.The contextual information and situations come from service as a pilot in the USAF, living in Asia, Europe and Latin America, and inexplicable success at snaring women well out of his league. These remarkable similarities with the main character noted, he insists the work is not autobiographical. It’s wish fulfillment.

Bernhart currently lives in a yurt on a mountaintop in northern Georgia with one ex-wife, two daughters, and three cats. He still flies his vintage plane, although more cautiously than before, and he’s unshakeable in his conviction that he’s God’s Gift to Aviation.

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Man on Edge (A Rake Ozenna Thriller Book 2) by Humphrey Hawksley Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A young woman finds her only means of survival in an enemy state is her former fiancee as the clock races in author Humphrey Hawksley’s “Man on Edge (A Rake Ozenna Thriller Book 2)”. 

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The Synopsis

A tense and twisting espionage thriller involving state secrets, lethal assassins and the threat of a new Cold War.

Trauma surgeon Carrie Walker is taken aback when her estranged uncle makes contact out of the blue. Senior Russian naval officer Artyom Semenov claims to be in possession of an explosive piece of information which he is offering to share with the West. But can he be trusted?

Travelling to Moscow undercover to meet with Semenov, Carrie finds herself stranded when the carefully-planned operation goes catastrophically awry. In grave danger, there’s only one person she can turn to for help: her former fiancé, Major Rake Ozenna of the Alaska National Guard.

Aware how vital it is that he reaches Carrie before others do, Rake knows he’s pitted against a powerful and lethal enemy. But is it a rogue agent – or the Russian state? As preparations gather pace for a high-profile NATO exercise off the Norwegian coast, Rake must act fast if he is to prevent a global catastrophe.

The Review

An action-packed thriller, author Humphrey Hawksley has created a thrill ride of a novel. While I haven’t read the first book in the series, the author does a great job of gleaning into the backstory and history established in the first novel enough to create a clear picture of the major players of the narrative and their roles. 

The buildup of suspense and heart-pounding action is equally matched to witty banter between characters and powerful character growth throughout the novel as well. Playing into the government agent versus the world theme, the author blends the shadowy government operations of a good thriller with the personal ups and downs of protagonist Rake and his on and off romance with Carrie. The backdrop of Russia and the surrounding areas felt relevant to the current political scene in the world, creating a deeper connection to the action of the novel’s plot overall. 

The Verdict

A one of a kind read author Humphrey Hawksley has created a tension-filled, action-packed narrative that is not to be missed. An evenly paced read with steady character arcs and a great flow overall, everyone should grab their copies of “Man on Edge”, the second book in the Rake Ozenna Thriller series, today! 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Humphrey Hawksley’s brand-new international thriller series begins in paperback in October 2019 with MAN ON ICE a knuckle-whitening drama set on the remote and wild US-Russian border. In early, 2020 comes the nail-biting MAN ON EDGE set on the Norway-Russian border followed in 2021 by MAN ON FIRE whose location is yet to disclosed. Rake Ozenna, a native of Little Diomede island in Alaska is the series hero. Each thriller includes trauma surgeon, Dr Carrie Walker, American intelligence contractor, Harry Lucas, and his ex-wife, British businesswoman and diplomat, Stephanie Lucas.

Humphrey’s thrillers have been widely praised. Steve Berry describes ‘authentic settings, non-stop action’ from MAN ON ICE. Lee Child speaks of SECURITY BREACH as ‘high stakes, high octane’ and Alan Furst as a ‘hard-driving, a good taut thriller’ — right back to the first future history thriller DRAGON STRIKE: THE MILLENNIUM WAR which Steve Coonts hailed as ‘ominous and insightful.’

His recent non-fiction ASIAN WATERS: THE STRUGGLE OVER THE SOUTH CHINA SEA AND THE STRATEGY OF CHINESE EXPANSION has been acclaimed on every continent by those at the heart of global decision-making, such as Indian cabinet minister, Hardeep Puri; the last governor of Hong Kong Baron Lord Patten of Barnes; and Dr Wu Shicun, President of China’s National Institute for South China Sea Studies. China’s rise is a fast developing story, and Humphrey is currently working on an updated edition which is due out in June 2020.

Humphrey’s work as a BBC foreign correspondent has taken him all over the world with postings in Beijing, Hong Kong, Manila, Delhi and Colombo. He has contributed to ABC, National Public Radio and other networks in the United States and global publication of his work includes the Financial Times, New York Times, Yale Global, Nikkei Asian Review and others.

http://www.humphreyhawksley.com/

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Net Force: Dark Web by Jerome Preisler Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A series of terrorist attacks emerge just as a brand new Cyber-Security Task Force emerges, and must prove themselves by stopping this powerful new threat in author Jerome Preisler’s action-thriller, “Net Force: Dark Web”. 

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The Synopsis 

The return of the cutting-edge thriller series Net Force, created by Tom Clancy and Steve Pieczenik and written by Jerome Preisler.

The number one threat to our nation’s security is in cyberspace. The new US president wants to tackle the urgent problem head-on and launches a top secret line of defense: Net Force. But before the organization can be announced, the country is hit by an unprecedented, two-pronged terror attack.

Not yet empowered by Congress nor embraced by a dubious intelligence community, still untested, unproven and officially unnamed, Net Force’s elite group of cyber experts and field operatives must lead the fight against the ongoing waves of hacks while tracking down the mastermind. Their failure could mean global catastrophe. Success may lead them to become the highest-level security agency in the United States.

A story that seems ripped from tomorrow’s headlines, Net Force: Dark Web relaunches one of the most prescient thriller series at a time when cybersecurity is more vital than ever.


The Review

An exciting relaunch of a series co-created by icons Tom Clancy and Steve Pieczenik, Net Force: Dark Web is an exciting thriller that keeps readers on the edge of their seat throughout the entirety of the novel. Full of action from the book’s first pages, the story is equal parts narrative and character development, giving readers plenty to engage with throughout the novel. 

Employing the same beloved military action, espionage and thriller aspects of any good Tom Clancy novel and incorporating modern day technological warfare and diving into how intimately technology has become a part of our everyday lives, the author does a brilliant job of analyzing our dependence on technology and the next era of terrorism and security around the world. As technology and our society evolves, so to will those seeking to use the good aspects of technology for their own nefarious purposes. 


The Verdict

A well-written, lengthy yet action-packed and engaging read. Author Jerome Preisler has done a marvelous job of creating a cast of characters that feel real and personal enough for readers to feel connected to, like one protagonist named Kali, who’s story evolves greatly from the first page of this novel all the way to it’s end. With the United States facing a dangerous new threat, with government officials in the crosshairs and cyberthreats everywhere, it’s up to a new elite task force to stop the threat before its too late. Find out for yourself why this is the next chapter of an exciting new action-thriller series by preordering your copy of Jerome Preisler’s novel “Net Force: Dark Web” today! 

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

Jerome Preisler is the prolific author of almost forty books of fiction and narrative nonfiction, including all eight novels in the New York Times bestselling TOM CLANCY’S POWER PLAYS series.

His latest book is NET FORCE:DARK WEB (November 2019), the first novel in a relaunch of the New York Times bestselling series co-created by Tom Clancy. Forthcoming in May 2020 is the enovella NET FORCE: EYE OF THE DRONE.

Among Jerome’s recent works of narrative history are CODE NAME CAESAR: The Secret Hunt for U-boat 864 During World War Two, and FIRST TO JUMP: How the Band of Brothers Was Aided by the Brave Paratroopers of Pathfinders Company. His next book of nonfiction, CIVIL WAR COMMANDO: William Cushing’s Daring Raid to Sink the Invincible Ironclad C.S.S. Albemarle,will be published by Regnery Books in October 2020.

Jerome lives in New York City and coastal Maine.


https://www.jeromepreisler.com/

https://amzn.to/2KB2EKG

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Vanished by Cynthia Fridsma Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A missing person’s case and a mysterious car found with a body inside lead to a complex mystery that will leave readers on the edge of their seat in author Cynthia Fridsma’s “Vanished”. 

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The Synopsis

Rose Gibbon’s husband has been missing for two years. Devastated, she sells her home. The next day, local authorities investigate an abandoned car at the intersection of Westland Avenue and Hemenway Street in Boston. All the blood recedes from her face; she knows it’s her husband’s car!

Meanwhile, Medical Examiner Natalie Principal arrives at the crime scene to inspect a charred body behind the wheel. The victim falls apart when she touches it. Since the car doesn’t show traces of fire, Natalie’s afraid the victim was exposed to a deadly dose of radiation. She informs the ATU—Anti Terrorism Unit—about a possible terrorist threat of a dirty bomb. As the investigation continues, digital footprints are erased, and people vanish into thin air . . . a deadly race to save Natalie’s friends is about to begin. 


The Review

A truly wonderful read! What beings as a simple missing person/murder mystery turns into something far more complex that will truly shock readers. A blend of classic murder mysteries with sci-fi and government conspiracies, the story takes readers through an emotional tale of a woman desperate to find out what happened to her husband, and the team of investigators who get sucked into the mystery alongside her. 

While the cast of characters were wonderfully written and kept the readers emotionally invested, it was the well thought out, carefully orchestrated and expertly driven plot that made this story what it was. The twists and turns the story takes are what make truly memorable mysteries and thrillers, and as more bodies begin to pile up readers will soon discover an entire world that no one ever knew existed. 


The Verdict

This was an amazing read that readers will not want to miss. A truly one of a kind tale, the author does a beautiful job of blending emotionally driven character development with complex plot building and action-fueled drama. If you like mysteries, thrillers and elements of sci-fi blended into emotional tales of loss, grief and struggle, then you will not want to miss author Cynthia Fridsma’s novel “Vanished”. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 8/10

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About the Author

As far back as she can remember, Cynthia has been listening to exciting stories told by her mother. She grew up reading books from Edgar Allan Poe, H. P. Lovecraft, and Philip K. Dick, among others.

It was Cynthia’s mother who inspired her to start telling—and writing—her own stories.

Ms. Fridsma’s writing career started after a handicap in 2014—she has a tremor in her right hand, numbness in the fingers, and pain in her wrist. She had to give up her other creative outlets, such as photography, computer programming, and gave up on juggling, so focused on what she could do rather than what she couldn’t do.

Besides writing, she sometimes plays guitar—in Jimi Hendrix style.

Cynthia lives with her husband and two pet bunnies in Amsterdam.

http://www.cynthiafridsma.com/

Posted in reviews

The Sixth Wicked Child (4MK Thriller #3) By J.D. Barker Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A serial killer’s final act comes to fruition as the authorities are forced to ask themselves if the infamous 4MK is who they always believed he was, or if the hero of this tale is the monster all along in author J.D. Barker’s The Sixth Wicked Child. 

The Synopsis

In the riveting conclusion of the 4MK trilogy, Barker takes the thriller to an entirely new level. Don’t miss a single word of the series James Patterson called “ingenious.”

Hear No Evil

For Detective Sam Porter, the words “Father, forgive me” conjure memories long forgotten; a past intentionally buried. For Anson Bishop, these three words connect a childhood to the present as he unleashes a truth concealed for decades.

See No Evil

Found written on cardboard near each body, these words link multiple victims to a single killer—discovered within minutes of each other in both Chicago and South Carolina—clearly connected yet separated by impossible miles.

Speak No Evil

Chicago Metro and the FBI find themselves caught in chaos—a hospital on lockdown, a rogue officer, and corruption at the highest levels. When Anson Bishop, the prime suspect in the notorious 4MK serial murders turns himself in, he reveals a story completely unexpected, one that not only upends the current investigation, but one that will change the lives of all involved.

Do No Evil

With unrelenting tension and pulse-pounding suspense, the past unravels at breakneck speed as the truth behind the Four Monkey Killer’s motive is finally revealed in this masterfully crafted finale.

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The Review

The absolute best thriller of 2019 and one of the most heart-pounding, shocking and well crafted endings to a thriller series in years. The haunting and spine-chilling actions of 4MK have struck the nerve of fans around the world as this series has progressed, but author J.D. Barker outdoes himself in this incredible read. 

The way the author starts to share the connections between 4MK and protagonist Sam Porter bring about one of the most satisfying slow burn reveals of a thriller, delving into Anson Bishop’s past and revealing that 4MK may not be the most evil person in this tale. Forcing the reader to confront the true meaning of evil and the depths of human villainy that exists in our world, this story blends shocking revelations with high octane action and character development that plays like a film across the pages of this novel. 

By the story’s end, readers will realize that no one is who they seem. Heroes can be villains, just as villains can be the hero, even if it’s the hero of their own story. Any reader who has been following this series closely will thoroughly enjoy seeing threads even from book one reveal their connection to the story of Anson Bishop, and the final page of this tale will leave readers reeling as all if finally revealed.

The Verdict

An absolute must read novel of 2019, author J.D. Barker writes a compelling, engaging and satisfying conclusion to an epic thriller like no other. Creating a serial killer and villain that can stand up to the greats like Hannibal Lecter and The One-Armed Man of the hit tale The Fugitive, 4MK will forever be cemented as an iconic and terrifying foe. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy of author J.D. Barker’s “The Sixth Wicked Child, the third and final chapter of the 4MK Thriller saga. 

RATING: 10/10

About the Author

Barker was born January 7, 1971 in Lombard, Illinois and spent the first fourteen years of his life in Crystal Lake, Illinois. A staunch introvert, he was rarely seen without a book in hand, devouring both the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew series by the age of six before moving on to classics such as the works of Dickens and Twain. The discovery of Shelley, Stoker and Poe fueled a fire and it wasn’t long before he was writing tales of his own which he shared with friends and family. These early stories centered around witches and ghosts thought to inhabit the woods surrounding their home.

At fourteen, Barker’s family relocated to Englewood, Florida, a climate better suited to his father’s profession as a contractor. He attended Lemon Bay High School and graduated in 1989. Knowing he wanted to pursue a career in the arts but unsure of a direction, he enrolled at the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale where he later obtained a degree in business. While in college, one of his writing assignment found its way into the hands of Paul Gallotta of Circus Magazine. Gallotta reached out to Barker and asked him to join the staff of 25th Parallel Magazine where he worked alongside the man who would later become Marilyn Manson. 

Assignments dropped him into the center of pop culture and by 1991 Barker branched out, interviewing celebrities for the likes of Seventeen, TeenBeat, and other national and local publications. In 1992, Barker syndicated a small newspaper column called Revealed which centered around the investigation of haunted places and supernatural occurrences. While he often cites these early endeavors as a crash course in tightening prose, his heart remained with fiction. He began work as a book doctor and ghostwriter shortly thereafter, helping others fine tune their writing for publication. Barker has said this experience proved invaluable, teaching him what works and what doesn’t in today’s popular fiction. He would continue in this profession until 2012 when he wrote a novel of his own, titled Forsaken.

Stephen King read portions of Forsaken prior to publication and granted Barker permission to utilize the character of Leland Gaunt of King’s Needful Things in the novel. Indie-published in late 2014, the book went on to hit several major milestones – #2 on Audible (Harper Lee with Go Set a Watchman held #1), #44 on Amazon U.S., #2 on Amazon Canada, and #22 on Amazon UK. Forsaken was also nominated for a Bram Stoker Award (Best Debut Novel) and won a handful of others including a New Apple Medalist Award. 

After reading Forsaken, Bram Stoker’s family reached out to Barker and asked him to co-author a prequel to Dracula utilizing Bram’s original notes and journals, much of which has never been made public. The novel, titled Dracul, sold at auction to G.P. Putnam & Sons, with film rights going to Paramount. Andy Muschietti (IT, Mama) is attached to direct.

Barker’s initial indie success drew the attention of traditional agents and publishers and in early 2016 his debut thriller, The Fourth Monkey, sold in a series of pre-empts and auctions worldwide with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt set to publish in the U.S. and HarperCollins in the UK. The book has also sold for both film and television.

Barker splits his time between Englewood, FL, and Pittsburgh, PA, with his wife, Dayna.

http://facebook.com/therealjdbarker

https://www.instagram.com/jdbarker_author/

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Death by Design by John Graves Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

A dangerous and deadly assassin is tasked with the most violent attack on humanity the world has ever seen, and only a handful of people stand in her way in author John Graves action packed thriller, “Death by Design”. 

The Synopsis 

Navy Seal. Mossad agent. I am the Storm!

CEO of the world’s most exclusive executive protection agency, Tracker is now on her most dangerous mission ever attempted—exterminate mankind!

Tracker has been retained by a cabal of five extreme environmentalists to solve the climate change equation. They paid her $20 billion for 20 years for a final solution.

Humans are the enemy of the planet. They are the scourge of all species. They have destroyed much of Planet Earth’s wealth. There is little hope for the future. Only Tracker can solve the impossible equation. Only Tracker has the funds, the resources, and the will.

Pitted against her are Jake and Colonel Soliz, the best of the best within the CDC; Dr. Bake and her daughter Sally, who are brilliant CASPR, AI, and nano research scientists; and Mantis, Tracker’s equal and nemesis.

Which team will succeed? Who can eliminate the most successful killer of all time? Will humanity survive? Who will win? Read this page turner, Death by Design, for the thrilling answers!

The Review

One of the most unique and original thrillers of 2019! A whirlwind adventure that starts off with a bang as the CDC faces utter destruction, and leaves the world reeling as world leaders become so embroiled in retaliation and discovering who is responsible, that the real threat is just getting started. The author’s use of equal storytelling between assassin Tracker and the small team of people tasked with stopping the plot to destroy humanity forever keeps the reader engaged throughout the entire narrative. 

Rarely is an action-thriller able to delve more into the mindset and actions of the villain or antagonist than the protagonists. From the book’s first pages the reader is torn between the haunting origins of the character to the vicious and disturbing violence the assassin displays throughout the novel, keeping the readers emotions invested and torn asunder at every turn. 

The novel does a great job of showcasing humanity’s impact on the world, and the way some of humanity’s inherent cruelty impacts the rest of the world and their mindset about the way the world works. It also goes far and beyond what a typical dystopian thriller does, taking a scientific and methodical approach to how a trained and ruthless killer would go about systematically eliminating the human race. 

The Verdict

This is one of the top action/bio-thrillers of the year! Creative, engaging and top-notch characterization help bring this story to life in unexpected ways, and the book’s end leaves readers hanging on the edge of their seat as it takes a complete turn and leaves the reader wanting more. If this novel is any indication, this isn’t the last we’ve heard of Tracker or the author themselves, so be sure to grab your copy of “Death by Design” by John Graves today and dive into the chaotic and messed up world of Tracker now!

Rating: 10/10

About the Author

John has traveled extensively, with more than 80 countries’ stamps in his passport. His avocation is adventure. He has sailed to Hawaii several times as well as across the Atlantic and throughout the Mediterranean and Caribbean. He has trekked the Andes, the Sahara, the Taklamakan, the Serengeti, and the Namib.

In his previous career, John was a chef.