Russell Cruse is a British Author, the type I tend to gravitate towards as they have a wit that is subtle yet deadly. Russell Cruse is in this class.
His Head Count has multiple body droppings scattered from the Alps ski outing to the very school the teacher in charge works. The teacher is suspected of being at the least a paedophile on up to a murderer.
His actions leave you wondering if he is just a stressed out ex-husband/father taking his frustrations out on his students or someone set up for a fall.
This left me laughing in many spots and rooting for his vindication, never seeing the curveball that would neatly bring the conclusion to a home run. Cruse’s love of puzzles and his deep research give a full bodied feel to his stories.
Russell Cruse is also a member of the Cake & Quill group. Their first release proceeds go to a charity in the LA area which provides clinical support, advocacy, and other services to mentally ill homeless.
Their first collection, Gifts From The Dark: A Miscellany of Dread, features his short story NIGHT BUS, a shivery hot ride after the swing shift at a call center.
I have bought his two other novels, The Circling Song, and The Rothko Room, eagerly awaiting a time frame to enjoy reading.
Follow the above-highlighted links to the books and the Cake & Quill site
Paul and Paula’s Place to read Russell Cruse’s interview
O.N. Stefan is the pen name of an Australian writer of murder and thriller mysteries. I had realized when spotlighting her interview at Paul and Paula’s Place she did not have much in the way of personal information listed on her bio on Amazon or anywhere else, so I am happy she told me when asked, where she lives.
I have both her Mystery novels on my kindle and decided to start with her older story. If you are intimidated easily, I recommend not reading after the lights are dimmed or you’re alone. Stefan starts out with a calm and measured layer of mystery, much like Christie which led me to believe I‘ll have this solved before too long. Shortly after that smugness settled in, Stefan shook my complaisance and took me on a fast paced run, one step ahead of a killer. Her conclusion reminded me of Susan R. Sloan’s books. You’re sure you know, you think you know, but you better wait for that last sentence. Pick up The Deadly Caress at your local Amazon link
Lela Markham, the pen name of a native Alaskan has four published books under her Amazon profile. Her new release is Mirklin Wood, the second book in her Daermad Cycle. I have yet to read this book as I want to read The Willow Branch, the first book in this series. And, from the looks of it, she is not done with this series by a long shot. I did have a small peek into the Daermad Cycle and it is lush, full of fantasy and Celtic lore, but a world all Lela’s own. The two books are shy of one thousand pages, so grab both
Amazon author page
Her blog is always informative or entertaining. This week she is talking about free speech.
“For freedom of speech to exist, we all have to allow room for speech we abhor, recognizing that there are others who likely abhor our speech. The curtailment of speech creates an absence of political debate with far-reaching destructive consequences.” – Lela Markham (Facebook page)
Angelika Rust is one of the individuals involved in the Cake & Quill Publishing arm of the Cake & Quill Writers for Charity. I not only recommend picking up the Cake & Quill collections, two so far, each for different charities, but also check out the stories by the authors in each collection. Not every story submitted to these collections made the cut.
I loved her stories in Hearts & Other Dead Things so much, I picked up one of her individual stories,You Used to Hurry Home. This story is not your ordinary love story but one that is twisty turny funny and with an ending that is the most unexpected of all. A short story to have you going to her page, and grabbing another!
Interview with Angelika Rust at Paul and Paula’s Place
Angelika’s blog/site link