Tag Archive | mystery

Sidetracked by Dellani Oakes Part 2

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Deirdre Partridge is trying to get her husband and three teenage sons out the door, so Fred can take them to high school. They kiss one another goodbye, and their youngest son feels the need to make a comment.

“Get a room, you two,” Corin yelled, laughing hysterically at his supposed joke. Both brothers socked him. “Ouch! Baby Brother abuse!”

“Shut it, Cor,” they said in unison.

Closing the door, Deirdre Partridge leaned against it. Finally, all three boys in high school. Aiden was a senior, Burl a junior and Corin a freshman. Her boys were evenly spaced, almost exactly two years apart, but Aiden had a late September birthday, which held him back a year. No end of bother for him, especially since he and his brothers were avid golfers, and the younger two were also on the team.

“Not even seven o’clock,” Deirdre sighed. “Just once, I’d like them to get out of the house without me.”

She poured another cup of coffee and turned on her computer. The elderly tower warmed to life. It might be old, and a little surly, but she loved it. It had long been a friend and companion to her, keeping the boys entertained, helping with research papers, or providing her with hours of Netflix viewing. She could do that on the TV as well, but no one wanted to watch what she did, and they didn’t respect her right to watch what she wanted. There was always a reason to interrupt, regardless of how much she was enjoying a film.

Keys rattled in the front door and Fred came back in, grumbling. “Let me tell you, those bastards have no respect!”

“The students?” She knew the parking lot was often very chaotic.

“The parents! It took me five minutes to pull away from the curb. I realize they’re in a hurry, but so am I. I sat there like an idiot with my blinker going. Not a soul would let me in. And those teachers have no clue how to direct traffic. Someone in a yellow SUV nearly ran Coach Bullock down. Never saw that asshole move so fast!” He chuckled as he poured himself some coffee. “So, what’s on your docket today?”

“I think I’m going to write a book,” she said, not looking at him.

“That’s fantastic! You need a project to occupy you.”

“Now that they’re all in high school, self-sufficient, I want to do something for me,” she continued. “So, I’m going to write literature. Really serious stuff, dealing with social issues. I want to write the next To Kill a Mockingbird.”

“My wife writing the Great American Novel, huh?” he sounded skeptical.

“What? I know that tone. You don’t think I can.”

“No, it’s not that. Honey, you’ve never written a book, let alone a serious one, in your life.”

“I’ll learn. I’ve been reading books and watching videos. I love to write, I simply never put my mind to it. I just have to try. Harper Lee had very little experience when she wrote that book.”

“I know. I know…. Well, if that’s what you want to do, I support you.” He kissed her forehead. “I don’t have to be at work for three hours.” He raised his eyebrows with an inviting tilt of his head. “House to ourselves. We can make as much noise as we want!”

“Talked me into it.”

“Race you!”

“Let me just turn—”

“Leave it on.” Grabbing her hand, he tugged her to the bedroom.

Later, as they lay side by side, he curled his fingers in her hair. “How is it still so good, even though we’re old folks.”

“We’re not old folks. Well, you are,” she teased. He was two years older than she. “We’ve had a lot of practice.”

“You should write a steamy romance novel. You could use what we just did. Make everyone jealous.”

Deirdre laughed. “I told you, I want to write something serious.”

“A good sex life is very serious.” He gave her a hand up and they went for a shower.

After they bathed, he got dressed for work. He was an assistant manager at a large department store chain. “Before I forget, they’re sending me on another setup next week. I got the call when I was at the school.”

“Really? Another one? Where?”

Fred closed his eyes, thinking. “Somewhere in Minnesota.”

“Thank God it’s mid-August. You’d freeze up there in the winter. Got your lunch?”

“Yeah. You’ll be okay, with the drop off, when I’m gone?”

“I’m up anyway. Doesn’t make any difference. I hate it, but I’m not as polite as you. I don’t wait to be let in, I make a hole.”

© 2018 Dellani Oakes

To Buy Dellani’s Books

Red River Radio Presents What’s Write for Me with Karen & Scott! Tuesday, July 31 at 4PM EDT on Blog Talk Radio

Catch Us Live!

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It’s summertime and it’s HOT! In order to take our minds off how sweaty we are, I’ve got two really cool authors lined up to chat with us today.

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First up, alphabetically speaking, is Karen Vaughan is the author of the Laura and Gerry Mysteries, as well as Holmes in America and Dead Comic Standing. She is also a PA for authors, and a talk show host here on the Red River Radio Network. Welcome back, Karen. You’ve been here so often, I’ve lost track. It’s like a second home for you.

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Second is Scott Moses, author of the futuristic thriller Between Truth and Eternity and the hilariously thought provoking Fools of Parody. Welcome back, Scott! We’re so delighted to have you here for a second visit.

This show was originally scheduled for Wednesday, July 25, but I was ill. I’m better now, so away we go!

Listen in live, or catch it at your convenience.

Karen Vaughan Scott Moses What's Write for Me collage

 

Red River Radio Presents What’s Write for Me with Lory & Shelton

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Wednesday, April 25, 4-6 PM EDT on Blog Talk Radio

Still waiting for Spring to Spring? Here in Florida, it has—mostly—and with it allergies, asthma and annoyance. Nothing like a stuffy head and watering eyes to keep you inside. Or, you can brave the crowds, and flock to the beach—where you battle traffic, rip tides and high tides. The choice is clear, at least to me. Home is where the heart is. (And the Benadryl)

Gosh, if only life could be perfect! You know what? It can, by reading a good book! Our authors today have some great escapes for you, so kick back, sip your favorite cold (or hot) beverage, and enjoy a chat with us.

Lory La Selva Paduano

First up, Lory La Selva Paduano author of historical fiction Crown of Embers, Wonderland Series, Khafa the High Priestess. New to the show, we’re so glad to have her here. Welcome, Lory!

Shelton Williams

Also new to the lineup is Shelton Williams author of murder mysteries Covey Jencks, Washed in the Blood and Summer of 66. Welcome to the show, Shelton! Hope you have fun.

Join us for a fun filled chat, and be careful out there. Mother Nature is a little loco.

 

Red River Radio Presents What’s Write for Me with Anna, Karen and Rachel!

TUNE IN WEDNESDAY!

What’s Write for Me Wednesday, September 28, 2016 from 4:00 – 6:00 PM EDT on Blog Talk Radio

 

After a brief hiatus, Dellani and Christina are back! Today, Dellani will chat not only with Karen Vaughan and Anna Celeste Burke, but Christina’s alter ego – Rachel Rueben!

Join us for this fun filled chat!

 

New to the show, Anna Celeste Burke, author of All Hallow’s Eve Heist, Love Notes in the Key of Sea, Gnarly New Year and many more.

Also chatting with us, good friend and another Red River Radio host, Karen Vaughan, author of Jamaica Dead, Daytona Dead, Left for Dead, Holmes in America and many more.

Karen and Anna are also featured in a cooperative book set called Mysteries Gone Mad.

Rachel Rueben is an old hand at the talk show, though she’s usually the silent minority. Today, we’re making her talk about her books Hag, Eternal Bond and her newest venture, Fedelta.

TUNE IN LIVE OR LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

Mickey Hoffman, Woman of Mystery!

I first met Mickey through a video game. That’s right, an online game. We started talking about writing and she asked if I had a publisher. I sent her to mine and that’s how Second Wind Publishing and Mickey Hoffman got together. Her first book, School of Lies, is reviewed below. I’m excited to announce that the sequel, Deadly Traffic, is now available from Second Wind Publishing. I haven’t read it yet, but I fully expect it to be as great as School of Lies!

What is your book about?

School of Lies is a funny mystery novel about a bunch of teachers who work in a dysfunctional, urban high school. The stressful environment is a perfect catalyst for the murder that takes place. My new book, Deadly Traffic takes a teacher out of her comfort zone into the word of human trafficking when female students disappear from campus.

Tell us a little about your main characters. Who was your favorite? Why?

My MC is a Special Ed. teacher named Kendra Desola. She’s compulsive and overly inquisitive; every problem has to be examined and solved. She is devoted to her students but has learned the hard way that the best way to help them often involves breaking the rules. There’s a tension between her wanting to be a good role model and her willingness to lie when she thinks it’s useful. In Deadly Traffic, Kendra meets a young man, Win Ni (who my brother decided to call Win Ni the Pooh). Win has a good heart but he wants to be rich and is willing to do almost anything to achieve his goal. I wanted to make him a lot darker than he ended up because I became fond of him.

Who is your most unusual character?

I’d have to say most of them are unusual, but they’re true to form. The good characters I create are never all good and that bothers some people. Readers who aren’t familiar with what really goes on in public schools may think the teachers I portray are over the top. I’ve had people react in shock. They say, “A Vice Principal wouldn’t talk like that.” Oh, but they do, they do.

Did you do any research for the book? If so, how did you do it? (searching Internet, magazines, other books, etc.)

For School of Lies I relied on my own experience moving through different schools. I mentally filed away what other teachers told me of their experiences as well. The book, in fact, started because some of my fellow teachers knew I liked to write and said, “You should really make a book about some of this stuff because no one would believe it.” For my second book, Deadly Traffic, I read several nonfiction books about modern slavery—in this country as well as overseas—and human trafficking, and visited many websites.

What was the first story you remember writing?

My family used to make up poems and stories in the car during road trips when I was very young and I’d try to contribute when my older brother would stop torturing me. Just kidding. I do recall writing a play in 9th grade with some friends about a super pigeon named Supersplatt.

What do you like to read?

I like mystery novels, fantasy and science fiction. I try to find mysteries with puzzles and with as little gore as possible. Some of my favorite writers are Elizabeth George, Ian Rankin and Tad Williams.

What writer influenced you the most?

Mark Twain. Absolutely.

What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you’d written yourself?

Hitchhiker’ Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.

What, in your opinion, are the essential qualities of a good story?

I want the main characters to have a “quest.” The quest can be a real journey or one in their heads and if there’s mystery involved all the better.

What is the best advice another writer gave you?

I asked how you tell when your manuscript is finished. The reply: “You don’t leave a book when it’s done, it leaves you.”

See also:

Mickey Mickey Hoffman’s author page at Second Wind Publishing, LLC
Interview of Kendra DeSola the Hero of School of Lies by Mickey Hoffman
The first chapter of School of Lies by Mickey Hoffman
Review of School of Lies by Mickey Hoffman

SCHOOL OF LIES – Mickey Hoffman

 Kendra DeSola teaches special education at an inner city school, Standard High School. Short of money for her program, Kendra does the best she can for her students. If there’s one thing the kids know, Miss DeSola is there for them. So it’s a shock when an apparent blackmail picture shows up, implicating Kendra in a scandal.

Terrified her boss, Vice-Principal Zant, will find out and use it against her, Kendra begins to investigate. Her search for the truth turns deadly when one of her colleagues is killed. Was it an accident or murder? Kendra is determined to find out, because she is a suspect.

Vice-Principal Zant is an ambitious, connected and not very bright administrator. Confident he will be chosen to replace the current principal, Mr. Favor, he wields his power mercilessly.

As Kendra investigates, she discovers that her colleagues aren’t the people she thought they were. Everyone has secrets that can end their careers and it’s possible that she’s not the only one who had a really good motive for murder.

School of Lies is a riveting mystery centered around the shy, mousy teacher, Kendra DeSola. She overcomes her timidity as she pursues a puzzling mystery. I highly recommend this book for all mystery/ suspense lovers.

Five Golden Acorns!

Watch this space for a review of Deadly Traffic! I’m honored that Mickey shared several chapters with me while she was writing. It’s a hard hitting sequel to School of Lies.