Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Ice on the Bay by Dale E. Lehman and Kathleen Lehman - Book Tour and Giveaway

About the Book

The forecast: Record cold. The crimes: Colder still.

A saintly young veterinary technician disappears on Christmas Eve, leaving behind only a broken window and smears of blood on his clinic's back steps. Two years later, his disappearance remains a mystery. A home in an exclusive area burns to the ground, mirroring fires ignited the previous year by an arsonist who now sits in prison. Is the new fire a copycat, or has the wrong man been convicted? A criminal with a long list of enemies is shot dead, and not even his friends are sorry. While temperatures plummet, cold cases collide with new crimes, and somewhere a killer with blood as icy as the waters of the Chesapeake Bay watches and waits.


Hannah took two pairs of latex gloves from her pocket and handed one pair to Harold. They pulled them on, careful not to rip them, then Harold eased up the short flight of wooden steps leading to the door, his footfalls quieter than a rabbit's. He gently rotated the knob. Of course it was locked, but it never hurt to check. No sense smashing things if the owner had invited them in. Leaning to the left, he felt around the nearest window, examined it in detail, and gingerly tried to push up the lower sash. Again, no luck. Again, none expected.

Hannah tiptoed up the steps while he worked and stood close behind him. "Hammer," she whispered, pulling the tool from her coat pocket and handing it to him like a nurse handing a scalpel to a surgeon.

He took the hammer and with a swift stroke smashed the pane, then cleaned the jagged shards from the sash with the head. Falling splinters chattered as they struck the floor inside. Once satisfied the opening was clean, he helped Hannah through the window. She moved so quietly she might have vanished, but in his mind Harold could see her go to the door, disarm the alarm with the code they had been given, and unlock the deadbolt. The door whispered open.

He slipped inside and eased the door shut, then took her face in his hands and kissed her on the forehead. She beamed, a dog basking in her master's approval.

The very next instant, the job went horribly wrong


Tell us about your book, what inspired it?

"Ice on the Bay" is the third book in my Howard County Mystery series, set (oddly enough) in Howard County, Maryland, although I actually live in eastern Baltimore County. A couple of years ago we had an unusually cold winter. In my 20 or so years in the area, I had never known it to be so cold here for so long. Not that it bothers me; I'm a Midwesterner. But one day while driving to work I was crossing the Francis Scott Key Bridge, which arches over the Patapsco River, the tributary of the Chesapeake that flows out from Baltimore's harbor, and below me I saw ice covering the water from shore to shore as far as the eye could see. I immediately thought, "Ice on the bay! What a great title for a mystery!" So then of course I had to figure out a story to go with it. Obviously it had to have themes of cold and warmth running through it. It strikes me that this is exactly backwards: surely the story should come before the title? But that's happened to me twice now. My second book in the series, "True Death," also started with the title. 

What was the hardest part to write in this book?

For me it was the Catholic content, because I'm a Baha'i, not a Catholic. The second of my detective trio, Detective Sergeant Corina Montufar, begins the series as a non-practicing Catholic, but as the books progress she is slowly reclaiming her faith. Fortunately my wife Kathleen is both my editor and a Catholic, so I handed certain sections of the book to her. She did an amazing job developing this aspect of Corina's character, so much so that I decided she deserved a byline. Aside from that, certain elements of the plot were tricky. In this novel, I have three seemingly unrelated crimes running side-by-side. Marshalling them all into a coherent order and connecting all the dots took some doing.

Tell us about the cover and the inspiration for it.

We had a heck of a time with the cover. I originally wanted a photo of the Chesapeake with ice on it. I figured a lot of photographers would have captured that winter. But a search of photo libraries proved disappointing. Kathleen ultimately designed it, using a black and white photo of the Patapsco with Baltimore in the background. She found a font that looked rather like letters made of ice and positioned them to suggest ice breaking up and floating away. The whole thing is supposed to feel cold and impersonal. And if certain other elements feel a bit wrong or off-kilter, that's intentional, too.

What are your ambitions for your writing career?

I've been a software developer for nearly 40 years and am badly in need of a retirement plan. I hope writing will be it. I'm not entirely joking. I've been writing for as long as I can remember and have a lot of fun telling stories. Many days lately I wish I could do it full time, but unfortunately my creditors insist on a steady paycheck. Oh, well. Maybe eventually. I currently have a science fiction/humor novel searching for an agent. I'm also at work on HCM #4 (no title yet this time) and a really fun crime/humor novel.

Do you listen to music when you're writing?

Not generally. I tend to prefer relative quite when writing. However, when there is too much noise in my environment, I sometimes plug in the earbuds and listen to classical instrumental music. I can't write with someone else's words in my ears.

Favorite place to read?

Propped up in bed or stretched out on the sofa. Reading should be done in comfort if at all possible. And with a real book in hand. I don't own an e-reader, although lately I've been reading some books by indie authors on my computer in order to review them on my blog. It's far more economical to pick up a bunch of books that way.

Anything else you might want to add?

First, thank you for having me and my thanks to your readers for reading this. I enjoy hearing from readers and would love to listen to your feedback, answer your questions, or make funny faces for your amusement. (My children and grandchildren always enjoyed that last part, anyway.) I hope you enjoy "Ice on the Bay," and look forward to bringing you many more books.


About the Author

Dale E. Lehman is a veteran software developer, amateur astronomer, and bonsai artist in training. He is the author of the Howard County Mysteries series (The Fibonacci Murders, True Death, and Ice on the Bay ). His writing has also appeared in Sky & Telescope and a couple of software development journals. With his wife Kathleen he owns and operates One Voice Press and Serpent Cliff. They have five children, five grandchildren, and two feisty cats.

Author Links:
Author website and blog: https://www.DaleELehman.com

Book Links: 

Dale E. Lehman will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Don't Let Him Go by Kay Harris - Book Blitz and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour. Kay Harris will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Candace Gleason passed the bar, landed a great job, and is making a killer salary--basically, all of her dreams are coming true. Until she’s assigned to keep the boss’s petulant son out of trouble.

Jack Morrison is the rebellious black sheep of a mighty real estate family. He runs a nonprofit whose mission is to save poor people from evil corporations, like the one his own family owns. He is obnoxious, ridiculously charming, and insanely hot. He is the bane of Candace’s very existence.

Sparks fly from the moment they meet. Candace suddenly has more to worry about than keeping Jack out of jail. She has to keep him out of her heart.


I folded my arms across my chest and glared at Jack as he moseyed into the room. “You ambushed me.”

Jack came to a stop a few feet away and nodded. “I did.”

“That’s it?” I spread my arms out and leaned forward. My voice rose despite my effort to control it. “That’s all you have to say?”

“What do you want me to say? You’re smart. You can see what I did back there. I used you for my own gain.”

“You’re a prick!”

“I’m not surprised you feel that way. But I am sorry you had to get caught in the crossfire.” He moved to the couch and took a seat in the middle of it, purposefully giving me the high ground.

He slung his arms over the back of the couch casually, making him look like an arrogant ass. And that is exactly what I thought of him at that moment. So I called him on his supposed apology. “Are you?”

“Yes, I am. But you’re not innocent, Candie. You put yourself in this position by going to work for Morrison.”

“It’s Candace!” I shouted, on the edge of insanity.

He didn’t respond. He just looked at me with that infuriatingly handsome face and waited, an amused grin dancing on his face.

About the Author:
Kay Harris has had a diverse career with jobs ranging from college professor to park ranger. Now she adds author to her repertoire. Kay writes romance novels that contain a little bit of sweet, a dash of sexy, a touch of heartbreak, and a whole lot of fun!

Kay grew up in the Midwest and has since lived all over the western United States including Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, and California. She loves to hike, is obsessed with museums, and enjoys taking her extremely tall and very handsome husband on adventures.

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018

The Truth Inside by Trish Edmisten - Book Blitz and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Trish Edmisten will be awarding a $20 Amazon/BN to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

For as long as he can remember, Nate’s dreamed of being an MMA fighter. Nothing is going to stand in his way and no one is going to distract him. Everything is going according to plan when Natalie comes along. Even though he wasn’t looking for love, Nate can’t help falling fast and hard. Smart, sweet and supportive, she seems too good to be true, but it’s actually the other way around. Nate isn’t good enough for her, and he’s keeping a secret that will change everything between them. One day, she’ll see the truth inside of him. Until then, Nate’s determined to keep Natalie in his life for as long as he can.


“I wish you could see yourself through my eyes. Then you’d know I’m so glad you’re mine. That I love you just the way you are.”

“How can you still want to be with me? I lied to you.”

“I know, but I understand why you did.”

“And you’re not mad?”

“I wish you would have trusted me enough to tell me the truth, but I’m not mad,” Natalie assured him. “I can’t really blame you for being afraid to tell me when your own parents rejected you.”

Nate frowned. “How do you know that?”

“Until tonight, the only thing you’ve ever said about them is you don’t really talk to them.”

“Yeah, they didn’t understand. When I left, they told me not to come back until I could be the daughter they deserved.”

“If they can’t see how great you are, they don’t deserve you. Lucky for me, I can see it.”

“Are you sure about this, Natalie? Sure about being with me?”

“Nate, you are the sweetest man I know. You’re smart and funny and easy to talk to and we have so much fun together. You treat me like a person and not an accessory. Why would I give all of that up just because you weren’t born in the right body?”

“You can’t be real,” Nate whispered.

“Does this feel real?” Leaning forward, she pressed her lips to his.

Nate’s mind may have been conflicted, but his body was quick to respond. There wasn’t any hesitation or doubt in his kiss.

About the Author: Trish Edmisten is the author of several novels, including Extraordinary Will, a Reader Views Literary Award Winner. Her work has appeared in Writer’s Journal, Creative With Words and A Long Story Short. Besides being an author, she holds a degree in criminology. Trish lives in Fresno, California with her husband and their teenage daughter.


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