Today is my stop in the Blog Tour with Bloodhound Books for Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead by Owen Mullen. Today I am sharing an excerpt of the novel.
Charlie’s Back! Gavin Law was a whistleblower. Now he’s missing. Just another case for Glasgow PI, Charlie Cameron, until he discovers there is more to Law and his disappearance than anyone imagined. Wallace Maitland, the surgeon responsible for leaving a woman brain-damaged may have abandoned his sacred oath and become a killer. Did the hospital which refused to accept responsibility for the tragedy have Law silenced permanently? Or, with his wife little more than a vegetable, has David Cooper, believing he has been betrayed yet again, taken justice into his own hands? Charlie comes to realise the world of medicine can be a dangerous place.
Across the city, East End gangster, Sean Rafferty is preparing to exploit the already corrupt city council in a multi-million pound leisure development known as Riverside. The project will be good for Glasgow. But not everybody is keen to work with Rafferty. With more than money at stake, Sean will do anything to get his way. His motto, borrowed from his old man, is simple. Never take a no from somebody who can give you a yes. If that means murder, then so be it. Charlie has crossed Rafferty’s path before and lived to tell the tale. He may not be so lucky a second time.
Colin McMillan sat in the car outside the flat and stared at the window. More than once he started to get out and changed his mind. The light was on. She was there; he’d seen the curtain move an hour ago. Since then there had been nothing. For two months he had tried and failed to have a conversation with his estranged wife. Joyce didn’t want to speak to him and hung up as soon as she heard his voice.
Without her, the house in Bearsden where they had lived for fifteen years, was just bricks and mortar; rooms filled only with memories of them as Colin and Joyce: The McMillans.
On their last night together they’d made love in the dark. And in the dark, Joyce was more demanding than he had ever known her. She devoured him, scratching his back and beating her fists on his chest like a trapped animal trying to escape. When it was over she turned away, sobbing quietly into the pillow. Because she had known.
The following evening, McMillan returned to find his wife gone, leaving him confused and unhappy and alone to wonder what he had done wrong.
Since then, he had drifted through days that became weeks then months, paralysed with sorrow; unable to come to terms with it. He had been here on other nights, hoping she would talk to him and at least tell him why.
The edge of the curtain drew back a fraction. For a couple of seconds a face peered down at him. Or did it? He couldn’t be sure. It had been a long and difficult day in theatre dealing with a series of complicated deliveries; the surgeon was exhausted. Seeing what he wanted to see maybe. So he waited, afraid of causing a scene, knowing it wouldn’t help. After twenty minutes he came to a decision. Whatever the problem was it could be put right. He had to have one last go at saving his marriage.
McMillan got out of the car.
His footsteps echoed in the stairwell. A lonely sound. At the top he stopped. The door of the flat was open. He called. ‘Joyce! Joyce! Joyce it’s me!’
McMillan went inside, along the hall and into the lounge at the end. There was no sign of his wife. He tried a bedroom. Nobody there. Not in the kitchen either. In the second bedroom he found her and his world fell apart.
Joyce was hanging from a cupboard door. She had cut an electrical cable off something and used it as a makeshift noose. Her features were distorted by the agony endured in the minutes before she died. Saliva trickled from her mouth and a viscous strand of mucous hung from her chin, like the beginning of a spider’s web. The tip of her tongue poked from between her teeth above bulging eyes that didn’t see.
The books she’d been standing on lay scattered on the floor and her arms were by her side, pushed tight inside the belt she had been wearing so she wouldn’t be able change her mind. Joyce McMillan hadn’t wanted to save herself.
Colin McMillan ran to his wife and threw himself around her waist, sobbing like a child. He eased her lifeless body off the door and carried it into the lounge. On the couch he placed a pillow beneath her head and ran his fingers tenderly through her hair. What kind of hell had she been in to do this?
The answer was on the coffee table. Three crisp pages slipped under a half-finished cup of tea, still warm. Joyce’s small unhurried hand explained all her husband hadn’t understood and more. At the end she had written ‘I’m so sorry. Forgive me. Please.’
Reading it broke McMillan’s heart. It hadn’t been passion that final night, it was despair. When he finished he was crying. He turned off the light and sat staring into the darkness, drained of every emotion except hate. Joyce’s face, horribly twisted in her final moments, would be with him for as long as he lived. He loosened his tie with a trembling hand. Eventually he folded the sheets of paper and put them in his jacket pocket, reached for the telephone and dialled 999.
About the Author:
When he was ten, Owen Mullen won a short story competition and didn’t write anything else for almost forty years. In between he graduated from Strathclyde University with a Masters in Tourism and a degree in Marketing, moved to London and worked as a rock musician, session singer and songwriter, andhad a hit record in Japan with a band he refuses to name; on occasion he still performs. He returned to Scotland to run a management consultancy and a marketing agency. He is an Arsenal supporter and a serious foodie. A gregarious recluse, he and his wife, Christine, split their time between Glasgow – where the Charlie Cameron books are set – and their villa in the Greek Islands.
Today I am taking part in a Blog Tour for Delude by Jacob Chance. **This book is Erotica and there is an excerpt Jacob wrote exclusively for this blog tour. You can also enter to win a signed paperback copy and gift card at the end of this post!
Purchase on Amazon
She wasn’t part of my original plan for revenge, but one glance at her and I was entranced. I followed her for weeks, observing her habits. I’ve been in her apartment numerous times, learning anything and everything I can about her. She’s become an obsession and I’ll do whatever it takes to make her mine.
It’s only a matter of time before I have her where I want her…
on her knees and at my mercy.
Soon, there will be no secrets between us.
Exclusive Content Excerpt:
Who is she? My eyes narrow as I take in the red haired nymph on the dance floor. Studying her movements, I notice she’s graceful and fluid, yet sexy at the same time. Watching her hips sensually sway to the slower tempo and grind to the thumping bass has my teeth clenching and my heart pounding wildly in my chest. I fight an instinctive urge to rush over, take her in my arms and never let her go.
What the hell is wrong with me? I’ve never had this reaction to a woman before. Usually they’re just a means to get off – a nameless, faceless hole to fuck. I use them hard and fast, bringing them extreme pleasure and pain because one isn’t as good without the other.
I’m tempted to slide behind her and let my hands roam over the gentle curves of her hips then slip around her waist to pull her flush against the front of me. There’d be no mistaking the effect her body has on me. She’d wiggle her ass against my cock, teasing me, then flick her eyes over her shoulder with a small playful smile on her shiny red lips. My fingers would
slide down the soft material of her dress to skim along the bottom edge, trailing over her silky thighs. She’d tremble from my touch, proof she wants me too.
Merely thinking about it has me fighting the overwhelming urge to carry her off and have my wicked way with her. I want to see her cuffed to my bed, whimpering and begging for my tongue or hard cock.
She returns to the table in the back corner of Quake, a popular club in Boston, with her friends. Her cheeks are flushed pink from dancing and her hair falls around her shoulders in a sexy disarray of waves.
My eyes scan the faces of the people she’s with. I know the names and have background information on them all. I’m well acquainted with some, more than others. I grimace as my hand rubs over my stomach. It was only weeks ago that I had a knife buried to the hilt in my gut and I was at death’s doorstep. Seeing the person responsible causes anger to burn through my veins.
Taking a deep breath I flick my gaze back to the living red haired angel. Immediately, I feel a sense of calm wash over me. She’s the only new face amongst them and now that I’ve seen her – no other matters. I have to find out who she is. I need to learn all I can about her.
Her eyes scan the room as if she can sense the heat of my stare. I smirk knowing she feels it too. This pulsing attraction between us is powerful and it needs to be explored. It will be explored. When I set my mind to something, nothing stands in my way.
Her hands smooth down the material on the back of her dress before she sits. She awkwardly tugs down the bottom to provide as much modesty as possible, but the short length leaves a good portion of her long sleek legs exposed. I can tell she’s uncomfortable and I smile at her modesty. There’s a sense of innocence about her I find extremely attractive.
Round after round of drinks are ordered by her friends as I stand here, studying her every move, slowly sipping a beer. Watching her tongue make a slow trek around the rim of her margarita glass, licking up all traces of salt has me mesmerized.
She throws her head back laughing and her long red hair tumbles past her shoulders.
What would her hair feel like trailing over my bare chest if she bent down to kiss me while riding my cock?
I need to know who this precious angel is. Seeing her tonight isn’t a coincidence. Fate placed her in my path for a reason.
Standing to the side of the bar, my shoulder braced against a white stucco pillar, my casual body language conceals the hurricane of emotions she’s stirring up in me. She’s an unexpected twist in my well thought out plan. I can’t wait to get to know her.
Let the games begin…
WIN a signed paperback copy of Delude and an Amazon gift card here
Today is my stop on a blog tour for In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen.
Author: Rhys Bowen
379 pages in Paperback
Published: March 1, 2017
Dates Read: February 2-24, 2017
My Rating: 4 Stars
Book Summary from Amazon:
World War II comes to Farleigh Place, the ancestral home of Lord Westerham and his five daughters, when a soldier with a failed parachute falls to his death on the estate. After his uniform and possessions raise suspicions, MI5 operative and family friend Ben Cresswell is covertly tasked with determining if the man is a German spy. The assignment also offers Ben the chance to be near Lord Westerham’s middle daughter, Pamela, whom he furtively loves. But Pamela has her own secret: she has taken a job at Bletchley Park, the British code-breaking facility.
As Ben follows a trail of spies and traitors, which may include another member of Pamela’s family, he discovers that some within the realm have an appalling, history-altering agenda. Can he, with Pamela’s help, stop them before England falls?
Inspired by the events and people of World War II, writer Rhys Bowen crafts a sweeping and riveting saga of class, family, love, and betrayal.
Don’t let the length of the time it took me to read In Farleigh Field deter you from reading it. I have been battling kidney stones and at times did not feel like reading or was not able to read. There was nothing wrong with the book.
First, I have to say I loved the cover! I loved seeing Farleigh Place on the cover with the planes flying over it. It gives you an impression of what’s to come in the novel. Even though Farleigh Place is fictional, you have an idea of how huge the home is.
When you first open In Farleigh Field you see a Cast of Characters. When I saw that I wondered what I got myself into as it shows a large cast. Don’t let that list intimidate you, as it is not really necessary, though it did help me and I did reference it from time to time.
Farleigh Place is the main setting of In Farleigh Field with Lord Westerham and his family. Farleigh has become a headquarters for British soldiers. A deceased parachutist is found on the property by Alfie, who is staying with the gamekeeper, and Lord Westerham’s youngest daughter Phoebe. The parachutist is found in a soldier’s uniform but is almost immediately suspected to be a spy, and Ben Creswell is assigned to investigate. Ben is a family friend and MI5 operative. He is also in love with Pamela who is Lord Westerham’s middle daughter, but she loves Jeremy Prescott, whom Ben is also friends with. Who this soldier was and if he was actually a spy is the main mystery of the novel though it is not the sole story:
Unknown to her family, Pamela is working at Bletchley Park which is the central site for British code breakers. Second oldest daughter Margot is living in Paris with her lover Count Gaston de Varennes. She is studying fashion and finds herself stuck between freedom and the Gestapo.
The stories all come together at the end of the novel. The book focuses on the family drama and there is a love triangle involved. This is a character driven novel, so if you are looking for a lot of action this is not the book for you. There is some action throughout the novel, but not as much as I expected with the premise. The last few chapters are packed with action as Rhys Bowen worked towards the conclusion. I found myself reading those last few chapters with anticipation, wanting to know what was going to happen.
You really get to know the characters throughout the novel. I did find myself wanting more of Pamela with her work at Bletchley Park and more of Margot and her life in Paris. I also really liked Phoebe.
Historical Fiction is not a genre I read often, but I will read it if I find the premise of the book intriguing. I have started to read more of Historical Fiction these past few years thanks to my sister-in-law Arleigh. Her website is: http://historical-fiction.com which she has run for nearly 10 years now! I enjoyed reading In Farleigh Field. I find myself wanting to know what happens with these characters next!
In Farleigh Field is recommended.
**I received an e-arc from Lake Union Publishing via NetGalley and an arc via Little Bird Publicity. Thank you so much for my copies!
About the Author:
Rhys Bowen is the New York Times bestselling author of over thirty mystery novels. Her work includes the Molly Murphy mysteries, set in 1900s New York City, and the Royal Spyness novels, featuring a minor royal in 1930s England, as well as the Constable Evenas mysteries about a police constable in contemporary Wales. Rhys’s works have won fourteen awards to date, including multiple Agatha, Anthony, and MacAvity awards. Her books have been translated into many languages, and she has fans from around the world, including the 12,000 who visit her Facebook page daily. She is a transplanted Brit who now divides her time between California and Arizona.[Top]