Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cover reveal for the upcoming Kelli Storm novel, Eye of the Storm

Thanks to my friend, Patti Roberts, for this great cover design.

Be sure to check out Patti's sight - for your next cover.

An excerpt from Eye of the Storm:

Friday August 16th – 9:20 A.M. – New York, New York
Office of the Chief Medical Examiner

Roberto Rodriguez knew less than his wife did. He told them that as soon as he got home, which was around one-thirty; he had taken a shower and gone straight to bed. Kelli could see that he was lying but didn’t press the issue.
The mixed odors of death and antiseptic struck her as she pushed through the double doors into the autopsy room. Jack Hastings was sitting at his desk and turned as she and Eric entered. “What’s with all the secrecy, Jack?”
Jack stood and picked up an evidence bag containing a stained piece of paper. “I thought it best not to say anything over the phone,” he said and held it out to her.
Kelli took the offered bag, turned it in her hand and looked down at the scrap of paper. “Now I see why you wanted to keep this quiet,” she said and looked at Eric. “I don’t believe this.”
Eric gave her a puzzled look. “Believe what? What’s on it?”
“It’s got my name on it, and just below that is the name of an old friend of ours, Vasily Fenenko,” she said and turned to Jack. “I need to look at the body, Jack.”

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

I just wanted to wish all of my fans a Happy Thanksgiving. I am truly thankful to all of you for following my blog and supporting my writing. Thank you.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Teaser Tuesday - Opening Scene from the next Kelli Storm novel

I'm switching it up a little, instead of having Thriller Thursday, I decided to do a Teaser Tuesday. Here is the first scene from the much anticipated upcoming Kelli Storm novel, yet untitled. Enjoy!

Friday August 16th – 6:37 A.M. – Washington Heights
Highbridge Park – Edgecombe Avenue and West 163rd

Detective Kelli Storm pulled up behind the Medical Examiner’s van and spotted her partner, Eric Ryder, standing next to a uniformed officer. She parked, got out and approached the two men. “Great way to start the day. So what have we got, Eric?”
Eric excused the uniformed officer, turned and sighed. “We’ve got a DB. Female, approximately nineteen years old, no ID, no purse. Had her throat sliced open, but it looks to be a dump job, no blood here.”
“Okay, let’s go have a look,” she said and headed for the crime scene tape. “Where’s the body?”
“Just on the other side of these rocks, to the right here.”
As she cleared the rock outcropping, Kelli spotted the M.E. and several uniformed officers. She ducked under the tape and headed for the M.E., Jack Hastings. “Morning, Jack.”
“Well, good morning, Detective Storm. Guess you and your partner got the luck of the draw on this one, you’re lieutenant must really like you” he said as he stood up from the body. “Terrible thing,” he said as he looked down at the body and shook his head.
“Yeah, it is, Jack, and yes, Frank absolutely loves us,” she said and rolled her eyes. “What else can you tell me that you haven’t already told Eric?”
“I can’t give you much more except that she wasn’t killed here. As for time of death, hard to tell, but if I had to guess I’d say that she died sometime between one and three this morning. I’ll know more once I get her on the table.”
Kelli looked down at the body, closed her eyes and sighed. “Okay, Jack, just keep us posted,” she said and looked at Eric. “Who found the body?”
“Early morning jogger. I’ve got one of the uniforms babysitting him. Officer Wolanski took his statement,” he said, flipping out his notebook. “I got his information and a copy of the statement. You want to take him back to the Squad for more questioning?”
“No, as long as we have his contact info, let the guy go. If we need anything, we can always get with him later. Come on, let’s head to the Squad and run our victim through the system, see if we can ID her,” she said and watched as the Medical Examiner’s assistant wheeled the body to the van. “Why do I have a bad feeling about this?”

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Madison Knight is back! Giveaway with Carolyn Arnold

If you haven’t already, meet Madison Knight, the chocolate-loving detective, who is determined to solve murder and find justice for the victims—even if that means coming into contact with the sight of blood.

However, in Found Innocent, the latest release in the series (releasing October 16th!), she doesn’t have to face too messy of a crime scene, at least in one sense. What she does have to deal with is whether or not she’s willing to jeopardize departmental relationships and cross the wall of blue.

Here, this is what it’s about:

There's one code when it comes to the wall of blue…and Madison Knight may have to cross it.

Any good cop knows you never report a brother for mishandling a case or accuse him of misconduct, but in order to find justice, Madison may not have a choice.

Lacy Rose had one goal for her twentieth birthday—to be found innocent of past sins—but her life is cut short.

When Lacy's remains are found in a garden and the investigation becomes connected to a closed case, Madison must face her past. The lead detective on that case was Madison's ex-fiancé. At the risk of jeopardizing departmental relationships, and churning up the attention of an old flame at the same time, Madison must push hard before the guilty are found innocent.

Excerpt, Chapter 1:

“He didn’t do it!”
The hysterical shouting pulled Madison’s attention from her monitor to a woman rushing toward her. 
The station was supposed to be quiet today. Sunday. She wasn’t required to be there, and that made it the perfect day to dig into her cold case.  She was so close to getting answers.
With one more longing look at her screen, Madison rose from her chair and held up her hands to stop the woman.
“Detective Knight.” She stated this as if they had met before.
Officer Ranson, the female officer who manned the front desk, came up behind them. “Come on—”
Another officer brushed past Ranson and slipped his hands under the woman’s arms. “Let’s go.”
He pulled on her, but she stayed still. Her eyes steadied on Madison.
“Please help me.” She attempted to shake loose from the officer’s grip.
Her frown lines were deep burrows, her eyes were sunken, and the flesh around them was puffy.  She appeared to be rough-edged, but there was something desperate about her, and she didn’t seem to be a threat to the lives of anyone here.
“I’ve got this,” Madison said.
“All right, your call.”  The male officer let go of the woman, and he and Ranson left.
 “I saw your face in the paper.” The woman held up the Stiles Times. “It’s you, isn’t it?” Her lashes were caked with mascara, and she blinked slowly. Madison wondered if the cosmetic had sealed her eyes shut.
Madison passed a glance to the paper. It captured a moment she wished to forget. A day when she had been forced to speak in front of a crowd and to take pride in the job she had done. The thing was, though, a good cop couldn’t care less about the recognition.
The woman sobbed, yet her tears didn’t affect her makeup. “He wouldn’t do this…”
Madison summoned patience.  A list of envelope-printing companies—which could prove to be a vital link in the chain of evidence against the Russians—would be on her monitor, right now. 
She took a deep breath, passed another glance to her computer, and turned back to the woman.  “Come with me.”
Madison kept the woman to the side of her. Her first impression was the woman didn’t pose a threat, but she still wasn’t willing to sacrifice her back by leading the way into the room.
Inside, Madison gestured to a chair.
The woman dropped her red bag heavily on the table. It was large enough to serve as a duffel bag. She pulled off her jean jacket, folded it over the back of the chair, and revealed a pink sweater that displayed more cleavage than Madison could ever hope to see on herself. The woman went rooting through the duffel bag and she stuffed a stick of gum in her mouth.  She worked at chopping it into a soft, pliable distraction. It snapped in her mouth.
“Let’s start with your name—”
“Vilma with an ‘i’. Vilma Thorne, well, it would have been. My God, Kev!” She raised her face upward as if calling out to a Greater Being. Her gum chewing paused only momentarily.
 “Vilma—” Madison had to tune out the noise and the display of her open-mouth chewing.  “Let’s start at the beginning. Why are you here?”
Vilma stuck a finger through one of the large gold hoops dangling from her ears and leaned in.
Madison detected the blend of cheap perfume and cigarettes. Maybe—she inhaled deeper, trying not to appear obvious—it wasn’t perfume but whiskey. It was hard to discern. Her eyes appeared normal, except for the abuse of eye makeup. Besides the thick mascara, her lids were weighed with the color purple. Her pupils weren’t dilated or pinpricks.
Still, she didn’t respond to Madison’s question.
“Okay, Vilma, if you need my help, I need you to talk to me.”
Possibly this woman was on a new line of drug that disguised itself behind brilliant colors? Maybe this was a mistake and Madison should have let her get hauled away.
“My family is against what he did. But he didn’t do it!” Her voice rose, tears flowed. She stopped chewing and, sniffling, went rooting in the duffel bag again. She came out with a bunched up tissue and wiped her nose.
Madison’s tolerance level had almost reached its limit. “You keep saying he didn’t do it.  Do what?”
 A tissue still pinched on the tip of her nose, Vilma said, “He didn’t kill himself…someone killed him.”

Interested in reading more?

The Madison Knight Series is a clean, murder mystery series meaning mild graphic violence and language. Each book is self-contained so you can read any of the books, and out of order, if you wanted to.  Books in the series in released order: Ties that Bind, Justified, Sacrifice, Life Sentence (Prequel in which Madison has a cameo role), and Found Innocent.

Carolyn Arnold started to take writing seriously six plus years ago when a co-worker said “tell me a story”. Since then she’s written nine novels and has plans to write many more. She has a love for the canine world and has two beagles that are affectionately named Max and Chelsea. Like her female protagonist Madison Knight, she loves her chocolate and has been known, on occasion, to speak her mind.

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

Thriller Thursday - Excerpt from the next Kelli Storm Novel - No title

Thursday August 29th – 3:22 P.M. - Manhattan
Federal Plaza – FBI New York Field Office

Kelli felt her anger welling up, and yet she had no one to blame but herself, at least that’s how she felt. Even though she felt responsible for his death, she also knew that Greg was right, she couldn’t blame herself. The question is which of them ordered his death; Misha Glinka or Sasha Yemelin? Or were they both been involved?
Porter rapped on his desk and brought her back to the present. “Are you listening, Detective Storm? Look, I know it’s a lot to deal with, but we have to focus on the task at hand. We’re dealing with two of the deadliest drug cartels to date, and there is no room for mistakes. These sons of bitches play by their own rules, and will not hesitate to kill anyone who gets in their way, including law enforcement officers.”
Kelli bit her lip and took a deep breath. “I know exactly what we’re dealing with, Special Agent Porter. Hell, I had the Medellin Cartel after for the past two years, and they came at me with everything they had. They even had their Russian friends trying to kill me, and I’m still here. So, yes, I know what we’re dealing with and I know that they don’t fuck around, but neither do I.”
He looked at her, cocked his head to one side and nodded. “Good. Now, tell me what you know about this case you were working on.”
“Well, I know that before you pulled me into this, I had a few good leads I was working on. Now, it’s all in the hands of two detectives from my PDU,” she said and crossed her arms.
“No need to get defensive, we’re all on the same side. I just want to know if you have any information that will help the team. Martinez told us that his cousin, Miguel Garcia, not only ran the drugs up here, he was also involved in smuggling young girls back into Mexico and South America. If he can be believed, the main partner in the trafficking operation is a Russian diplomat working out of the Consulate here in New York City.”
“And did he give you the name of this Russian?”
“Not yet,” he said and let out a deep sigh.
“Don’t tell me, he’s holding out for some kind of special concession, right? What does he want? Time off for good behavior?”
“That I could probably get, but no, nothing that simple. Right now we have him at Hazleton, high security. He’s asking to be transferred to a medium security prison in Atlanta. I asked him why Atlanta and all he would say was that he wanted to be in the south before winter. The thing is, there is no way in hell any judge is going to sign off on a transfer order. He might as well be asking us to cut him loose and give him a ride back to Colombia.”
“So if he’s holding out on this, why give up the Mexican cartels? Or did you make a deal with him for that information?”
“As a matter of fact, we’re working on a deal right now. It seems Martinez has a cousin that got into some trouble back in Colombia, and now his mother and aunt are begging him to help. Since Colombia decriminalized cocaine, anyone caught with less than one gram gets a pass, but anything over that and it’s off to prison. So, Martinez wants us to use our influence with the Colombian government, see if we can either make the charges go away, or at least keep him out of prison. I’ve seen La Modelo prison, and that is not a place you want to go.”
“I’m sure, but are you serious? This man is a murderer, he’s responsible for I don’t know how many deaths, even if he didn’t hold the knife or pull the trigger. But what’s worse is that you actually believe him.”
“No I don’t, at least not one-hundred percent, which is why we’re going to check out every lead he’s given us before we work a deal for his cousin. I’ve been doing this for a long time, Detective Storm, and I’ll admit that I’ve made some deals that turned my stomach, but you do what you have to do to get the job done. And if that means making a deal with Martinez gets us the Mexican cartels, then that’s what we do.”
“Well, you do what you have to do, but my focus is on finding out who killed Irina Senkin and shutting down this sex trafficking ring. And as for Martinez, he can keep his information, and stay locked up in Hazleton. Irina found a book with names, dates and shipments, enough to put these people away for a long time, and that’s why they killed her. The only problem is, is that she hid the book right under their noses, in Glinka’s club.”
“Well, that does complicate things. But it was smart; they’d never think to look for it there. Do you know where she hid it?”
Kelli felt a grin creeping across her face and she nodded. “Some place a man would never think to look.”

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Thriller Thursday - Excerpt from the next Kelli Storm Novel - No title yet

Tuesday August 27th – 11:18 A.M. – Brooklyn
West 12th Street – Foxy Lady Gentlemen’s Club

Kelli found a spot down the street from the club entrance and parked. Chris and Paul pulled in behind her. On the sidewalk, they looked the place over. “You sure about this information, Chris?”
“The guy is reliable. If he says Rozhkov is here, then he is.”
“Okay, let’s hope he’s right. Paul, you and I will take the front door. It looks like the main part of this club is on the second floor, but I’m not sure about the rear exit. Chris, check the back for any exits.”
“You think he’ll run? I thought your guy said he wanted out.”
“Yeah, well, let’s just cover the back anyway,” she said as she turned and headed toward the club.
As they neared the entrance, Chris stopped and looked at the back of the building. “Looks like three doors on the ground level, dead end,” he said and turned back toward Kelli and Paul. “If our guy does run, this is the only way out.”
“Okay, you stay here while Paul and I see if we can’t flush him out.”
Chris nodded and stepped through the gate. “I’ll be ready.”
Paul reached the entrance, pulled the door open and waited for Kelli. “You really think this guy is going to roll on his boss?”
She looked up at him as she stepped inside. “We’ll know when we get in here.”
Inside, they were greeted by a petite brunette behind a small counter. The woman stood as they entered and smiled. “Hi, welcome to Foxy Lady. If you’re here for our lunch special, we don’t start serving until twelve.”
Kelli looked up at Paul, shook her head and turned back to the young woman. “Actually we’re on Police business,” she said and flashed her badge. “We’re looking for someone and it’s possible that he could be here.”
The woman looked at them, her eyes flicking from one to the other. “There’s not going to be any trouble, is there? We don’t want trouble,” she said and swallowed hard.
“No, there won’t be any trouble. We’re not here to arrest anyone; we just want to ask this man some questions.”
The woman slowly nodded, the color returning to her face. “Well, okay, as long as there’s no trouble,” she said and waved them in.
Kelli pushed through the beaded curtain and headed up the flight of stairs. As they topped the stairs, Kelli stopped and bunched her nose at the smell. Cheap booze and stale perfume. Three men waving dollar bills sat at the main stage as a well-endowed young blonde in a G-string spun around a silver pole. Kelli shook her head and continued searching for Rozhkov. “Do you see him?”
“No, but this is a big place. Looks like there are more stages on the other side of this one,” he said as he weaved between tables.
Kelli nodded and followed him past the main stage and into the rear of the club. As she came around the main stage, she spotted Rozhkov sitting next to a smaller stage watching a particularly voluptuous red head gyrate her hips. She walked up to him and stopped a few feet away. “Nikolay Rozhkov, NYPD, we need to talk to you,” she said as she stepped up behind him.
Rozhkov leaned his head back slowly, looked up at Kelli, turned and looked at Paul. “I am thinking I am not having choice,” he said and stood. He turned and faced Kelli, towering over her. “What is it you are wanting?”
Kelli took two quick steps back and looked up at him. “Why don’t we go outside and talk, it’s a little noisy in here.”
“I am being comfortable here. If you are wanting to talk, we talk here,” he said and plopped back into his chair.
Kelli looked at him, then looked at Paul. “Okay, Rozhkov,” she said and sat next to him, “we talk here.”
“What is it you are wanting to know? You are after boss, no? If I am talking to you, then I am wanting protection.”
“You tell me what you know about Irina Senkin and then we’ll talk about protection. Do you know who killed her?”
Rozhkov lowered his head, closed his eyes and nodded. “Yes, I am knowing. She was such pretty girl, sweet. It is shame she is killed like that,” he said and looked at Kelli, tears forming in his eyes. “Before I am saying more, you are giving me protection from these people.”
“Fine,” she said and nodded as she turned toward Paul. “Paul, call the lieutenant, see what we can do about putting Mister Rozhkov up for a few days,” she said and looked back at Rozhkov. “This had better be worth it, Rozhkov. Come on,” she said and stood, “time to say goodbye.”
“If I must, but I am really wanting to stay here,” he said as he pulled a dollar bill out of his pocket and stuffed it into the G-string of a passing dancer. “Such pretty girls, they always remind me of Irina.”
“Wait, did she work here?”
Da, this is where I am first meeting her, long time ago. She was new to country and trying to get sister out of Russia, so a man brought her here and she is put to work. At first she is being afraid, but then she is meeting me and I am treating her like little sister, making sure no one is giving her trouble.”
“So you protected her. Your friend Vasily said you were a good man.”
 “Not good enough, I could not keep her from being killed,” he said and hung his head.