RED HAND interview with Steve Miletto

Thanks Steve.

My interview with Steven Miletto on writing and THE RED HAND, https://teachinglearningleadingk12.podbean.com/e/michael-s-daigle-discusses-creating-characters-writing-and-his-latest-thriller-the-red-hand-302/

From Steve: The interview is now published on Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Podbean, Stitcher, the Education Podcast Network, VoicEd Radio (Canada), and a few smaller podcast platforms.

 

I am getting about 1150+ downloads an episode right now. 80% of my audience is from the US (with California, New York, Texas, and Georgia having the larger audiences).

The rest of my listeners are from around the world – Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom are leading the way with the most listens.

I also will share the show on Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

 

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Fiction, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Mystery Writers of America, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, Sally Ember, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Five-Star summer reading: The Frank Nagler Mysteries

Thanks to the readers and fans of the Frank Nagler Mysteries for this deluge of 5-star reviews.

Kirkus Reviews: “One of modern fiction’s expertly drawn detectives.”

 

The first Frank Nagler mystery. Available at Amazon, Nook, Kobo and Wal-Mart

THE SWAMPS OF JERSEY. Why are an old swamp, a burning factory and a dead woman linked? Why is Ironton, N.J. detective Frank Nagler so concerned that Lauren Fox left town? Paperback, ebook, Audiobook.

E Sizmarick

5.0 out of 5 stars REALLY GOOD

Reviewed in the United States on June 30, 2020

This book is so top notch. It’s like a really good Scotch. Very satisfying, feels old school, seems like reading it made me cooler, or at least feel like a cooler person. This is a perfectly well crafted, balanced, detective thriller.

SWAMPS…https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00P2XO98Y/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i0

A GAME CALLED DEAD. Frank Nagler must track down an Internet terrorist whose past intertwines with his own. Paperback and ebook. A Runner-Up in the Shelf Unbound 2016 Best Indie Book contest.

Game called dead

  1. S. Mason

5.0 out of 5 stars Well-written crime drama

Reviewed in the United States on June 30, 2020

This was a well-written crime story. The protagonist detective character was well crafted and the plot flowed in a manner that made this a real page-turner. Definitely recommend.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01AAKHH9G/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i3

THE WEIGHT OF LIVING: The discovery of young girl wearing summer clothes on a bitter March night leads Frank Nagler into a search through a dark history that has surprising connections to his group of friends. Paperback and ebook.

First Place for Mysteries in the 2017 Royal Dragonfly Book Award contest; Notable 100 Book, Shelf Unbound 2018 Indie Book Awards; Named a Distinguished Favorite, 2018 Independent Press Awards; Distinguished Favorite in the 2018 Big NYC Book Contest; Finalist in the 2019 Book Excellence Awards.

Arthur W. Turfa

5.0 out of 5 stars Content is dark and gloomy, but as usual, author delivers a powerful, well-crafted story

Reviewed in the United States on June 24, 2020

Verified Purchase

The author avoids sensationalism here. As dark as the plot gets, what stands out, as usual, are the characters and dialogue. There is never a lack of scandal in Ironton, New Jersey, a city whose glory days are in the past, but where a few good people hope to make real and lasting improvements.
Police detective Frank Nagler is one of them. One of the best things about this series is that readers can start anywhere and not feel like they are missing out on so much. The author is very adept at giving enough of the backstory to whet readers’ interest in going back to earlier novels.
Characters who have appeared in earlier novels of the series reveal some surprising things about themselves in this book. The author makes it all fit together in a fast-paced riveting story.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B071CXW1JW/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i1

THE RED HAND: Frank Nagler’s beginning, a struggle in a terrorized city with a serial killer and a personal battle as his wife fight for her life. Paperback, ebook audiobook. Distinguished Favorite in the 2019 Big NYC Book Contest; Second Place winner for mysteries in the 2019 Royal Dragonfly Book Awards; Notable 100 Book in the 2019 Shelf Unbound Indie Book Awards; Distinguished Favorite in the 2020 Independent Press Awards; Nominee in the 2020 TopShelf Book Awards

Cyrus Webb

TOP 500 REVIEWER

5.0 out of 5 stars Taking us back to the beginning of Frank Nagler’s journey, THE RED HAND lets us into his Why

Reviewed in the United States on May 30, 2020

Verified Purchase

Author Michael S. Daigle has given us quite a collection of memorable stories with his books with the main character Frank Nagler. Now with THE RED HAND he takes us back to his beginnings: new on the job, finding his footing and his voice as well as his motivation… the ‘Why’ of why he is who he is.

I enjoyed this book from the beginning. It was almost like getting to know the backstory of an old friend. Things came up in this book that made me think to myself, ‘Oh, now I understand…’. We see Nagler deal with his weaknesses, find and lean into his strength and give himself to the work that can literally be the different between life and death as well as justice.

A satisfying read, even for those just discovering Nagler as a character. You’ll sure to want to know more about him after reading this one.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07TV94SKZ/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i2

 

For fun: WHO SHOT THE SMART GUY AT THE BLACKBOARD? A quick story that asks the question, Why did that political fundraiser go sideways? Ebook. Free on Kindle Unlimited.

theweed

5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best short stories I’ve read

Reviewed in the United States on January 1, 2018

Verified Purchase

Intriguing story. The characters were a bit bizarre, but that lent interest to the plot. I particularly liked the ending. I read it a second time to be sure I didn’t miss anything.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B077PDMP9K/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i5

 

 

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Fiction, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Mystery Writers of America, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A short reading of THE RED HAND (by me!?)

I was asked to record a short section from THE RED HAND for Authors Read Podcast. Thanks to the group for the opportunity.

Here are the links:

https://castbox.fm/episode/Episode-50%3A-Michael-Steven-Daigle-reads-from-The-Red-Hand-id1872281-id279422546?country=us

https://authorsreadpodcast.wordpress.com/2020/06/26/episode-50-michael-steven-daigle-reads-from-the-red-hand/

https://www.facebook.com/Authors-Read-Podcast-264076417455140/

What I learned from this is that I won’t be quitting my day job.

After listening to my reading, (and politely sighing – that’s OK) I urge you to check out Dane Petersen’s Audible.com version of THE RED HAND. That is what a professional sounds like.

Here’s the ACX  link: https://www.amazon.com/Red-Hand-Nagler-Mystery-Mysteries/dp/B089DN6RG6/ref=tmm_aud_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

Here’s the iTunes link: https://books.apple.com/us/audiobook/red-hand-frank-nagler-mystery-frank-nagler-mysteries/id1516916718

Also, the audiobook version of THE SWAMPS OF JERSEY, read and produced by Lee Alan, is available here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNSW8Ls8Y64&list=UUhsP65gzzjDU1nYTmw2jOvQ&index=9&t=0s

https://books.apple.com/us/audiobook/the-swamps-of-jersey-unabridged/id1367196859

“The Red Hand” was named a Distinguished Favorite in the 2019 Big NYC Book Contest

Named Second Place winner for mysteries in the 2019 Royal Dragonfly Book Awards

Named a Notable 100 Book in the 2019 Shelf Unbound Indie Book Awards

Named a Distinguished Favorite in the 2020 Independent Press Awards

A Nominee in the 2020 TopShelf Book Award

Listed in Contemporary Authors. www.gale.com.

Kirkus Pro Page: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/r/my-pro/

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Review: ‘Feeding the Leopard’

I have begun reviewing books on Reedsy Discovery at the behest of my friend Arthur Turfa. https://www.amazon.com/Arthur-Turfa/e/B00YJ9LNOA%3Fref=dbs_a_mng_rwt_scns_share.

I receive an ARC of an upcoming work.

Here is a link to my review of L.T. Kay’s “Feeding the Leopard,” an energetic story set in the bloody times of Zimbabwe’s transition through native rule.

https://reedsy.com/discovery/book/feeding-the-leopard-l-t-kay

Posted in Fiction | Leave a comment

Five-star review for THE WEIGHT OF LIVING

Thanks, Arthur Turfa for this new 5-star review of THE WEIGHT OF LIVING  A Frank Nagler Mystery.

 

5Stars: “The author avoids sensationalism here. As dark as the plot gets, what stands out, as usual, are the characters and dialogue. There is never a lack of scandal in Ironton, New Jersey, a city whose glory days are in the past, but where a few good people hope to make real and lasting improvements.
Police detective Frank Nagler is one of them. One of the best things about this series is that readers can start anywhere and not feel like they are missing out on so much.

The author is very adept at giving enough of the backstory to whet readers; interest in going back to earlier novels.
Characters who have appeared in earlier novels of the series reveal some surprising things about themselves in this book. The author makes it all fit together in a fast-paced riveting story.”

“The Weight of Living” was awarded First Place for mysteries in the 2017 Royal Dragonfly Book Award contest;

Named A Notable 100 Book, Shelf Unbound 2018 Indie Book Awards;

Named a Distinguished Favorite, 2018 Independent Press Awards.

Named a Distinguished Favorite in the 2018 Big NYC Book Contest.

Named a Finalist in the 2019 Book Excellence Awards.

 

The story: A young girl is found in a grocery store Dumpster on a cold March night wearing just shorts and a tank top. She does not speak to either Detective Frank Nagler, the social worker called to the scene, or later to a nun, who is an old friend of Nagler’s.

What appears to be a routine search for the girl’s family turns into a generational hell that drags Nagler into an examination of a decades old “suicide” of a young girl, and the multi-state crime enterprise of the shadow ringmaster.

The deeper Nagler looks, the more he and his companions are endangered, until the shocking climax that leaves Nagler questioning his actions to both solve the crimes and heal his damaged soul.

 

 

Other recent reviews:

“The narrative is a stunning and engrossing meditation of grief and survival that examines the insular world of Ironton, New Jersey whose past is clouded by everything from a devastating flood, to the near extinction of viable business opportunities to slimy politicians.”

“Daigle hits his stride in this third Frank Nagler Mystery. The characters are strong and convincing, and the plot is unpredictable, with sudden twists that take even a careful reader by surprise. The setting is dark, unsettling and gritty, a northern NJ city caught up in the aftermath of decades-long political corruption and financial hardships. Detective Frank Nagler is the last honest man in this city, the white knight who defends the weak and downtrodden. Of the three books in the series, this is the one that pulls out all the stops … (it’s through) this juxtaposition of the dark and light that the exquisite tension of the story builds.”

Available at:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B071CXW1JW/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i3

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-weight-of-living-michael-stephen-daigle/1126280404

Also, Walmart.com and kobo.com

Trailer: https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=you+tube+the+weight+of+living+daigle&docid=608022667218521564&mid=A5EAE84B7D3EF4B2EB6DA5EAE84B7D3EF4B2EB6D&view=detail&FORM=VIRE

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Fiction, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Mystery Writers of America, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Stealing tips; Boston, 1973

I was still some white guy underperforming my way through life and he was a black kid carrying more weight than I ever would. And I still had the advantage.

 

I found myself in Boston in 1973, having turned my English degree into a job flipping burgers at Brigham’s ice cream shop.

Boston was a city in transition that year. The Hub of the Universe, so-dubbed by writer Oliver Wendall Holmes, was not the city seen today where waterfront towers seem capable of tipping the city into Boston Harbor (or Baston Haa-ba, for the uninitiated).

Tourists walked the Freedom Trail and marveled at the Old North Church, looking for the lamps that launched the American Revolution, and rode the Swan Boats in The Public Garden.

But those who visited Griffin’s Wharf, the site of the Boston Tea Party, had they glanced beyond the replicas of the Eleanor and the Beaver, might have noticed that the harbor, except for the New England Aquarium, was an expanse of roped-off and dilapidated wharfs, the remnants of the great sailing days, darkened and dangerous, neither romantic enough to charm, nor worthy yet of development cash.

Boston in 1973 was still a city where grandparents dressed their grandchildren in their Sunday best, as their grandparents had done, and lunched at the eighth-floor restaurant at Filene’s Department Store where string quartets and magicians performed, while a few blocks away in the Combat Zone teen-aged dancers stripped for gamblers and drunks along lower Washington Street and performed tricks in the alleys.

But Boston in 1973 was in the middle of a monumental social change: The desegregation of the city’s schools. Under an order by federal judge Arthur Garrity, Boston had to racially balance the city schools, meaning for example, white kids from South Boston swapped schools with black kids from Roxbury.

Boston, like other Northeast cities, had been divided for years along racial and economic lines.

The Brigham’s I worked at was on the corner of Boylston and Tremont street. Boston Common was across the street, the Theater District ran in two directions and touched the edge of the Combat Zone.

The daytime crowd was workers, shoppers and tourists.

At night, the theater crowd, dressed for an evening out and buying tuna sandwiches to sneak into the theater where no food was allowed, mixed with a few guys trying sober up with coffee, and a collection of street kids.

One of my jobs on the busy nights was to bus the counter more often than necessary because the kids would steal tips.

The servers knew the kids on sight. It was an elaborate dance: I’d stand at the end of the counter for a minute or two until the kids left and they’d return the crowd thickened.

The night this happened, the restaurant was crowded as usual. Francis and Don, the beat cops in for their evening pick-me-up, where chatting about the Red Sox, when there was a little scuffle at the front of the counter. One of the servers had chased a couple of kids away after they tried to take a couple of bucks; she had nodded to me so I was heading out to patrol the counter.

Then it happened.

One of our regulars, a drunk scion of a prominent Boston family, was drinking off his hangover, when he looked up from his paperback and loudly said, “why don’t you go back to Africa.”

One kid, maybe fourteen had already moved to the door. In an instant he turned and in two steps crossed the space to the drunk, fist raised and hit the man four times in the face. Blood spurted all over from his broken nose.

I leaped over the counter to get between the kid and the drunk but Francis and Don had already secured his arms and were getting ready to lead him out of the building.

The kid and I stared silently at each other for a moment.

His face simmered with pain and defiance. Look at what I have to do. A couple of bucks. Bad housing, bad schools, no one will hire me because I’m from Roxbury and no white man can trust no kid from the projects. You all gave me a choice and this is the one I took. Fuck you, whitey.

A little kid, maybe ten, who was with the other kid stood in the doorway while his friend was being interviewed by the cops, looked up at me and said, “Man, you don’t know shit, do you?”

And he was right.

I had been on my own since I was about that kid’s age.

I had been offered different choices, and at that moment I wondered how my circumstances had been so different.

About a month later we were riding in a crowded Green Line trolley. I had my arm around my companion and my hand on her shoulder bag.

The crowd shifted as we entered a station, and in that opening break I saw that kid again.

We locked eyes for an instant. His were still hard and defiant.

Nothing had changed in that month, as if that was possible.

I was still some white guy underperforming my way through life and he was a black kid carrying more weight than I ever would. And I still had the advantage.

The two bucks on that counter meant little to the couple who left them, but a little more to the high school kid working a night job to maybe pay for college. And to the black kid? Maybe was just part of the game, but maybe it was all part of survival, a way to scream “I am.”

When we got home that night we were on the trolley, I noticed the straps to the shoulder bag had been unfastened.

Did the kid do it?

Hard to say. When I saw him he was three or four bodies away.

But he could have.

When I saw the loose straps, I smiled. That ten-year-old was right.

I didn’t know shit.

And as we watch our streets fill with protests and cities burn again, I wonder how much any of us know.

Nothing had changed in that month in 1973; and little has changed in the 47 years since.

 

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Leave a comment

Dane Petersen’s reading of THE RED HAND: Wow

I have been asked why I don’t record audio versions of my own Frank Nagler Mysteries.

It’s because of people like Dane Petersen. https://danepetersen.com/

Dane read and produced the newly released Audiobook of THE RED HAND, the fourth Frank Nagler Mystery.

Here’s the ACX  link: https://www.amazon.com/Red-Hand-Nagler-Mystery-Mysteries/dp/B089DN6RG6/ref=tmm_aud_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

Here’s the iTunes link: https://books.apple.com/us/audiobook/red-hand-frank-nagler-mystery-frank-nagler-mysteries/id1516916718

Years ago in a series of interviews we did for a voice-over showcase produced by Xe Sands https://www.xesands.com/, my friend Diane Havens https://soundcloud.com/diane-havens said that the key to voice acting is the acting – taking the words and drawing out the character within.

That is not a skill I possess.

I can write the words, imagine the conflicts, develop the plots and create the scenes, but the words of the characters in my mouth are flat and uninspiring. You would not want to hear much of it.

Dane’s version of THE RED HAND is similar to a song writer who after producing a version of their own song, hears a new artist working in another style of music sand off the rough edges and polish the tune and lyrics to a crystal perfection that stops you in your tracks.

Don’t get me wrong – and I’m not supposed to do this as an author, but what the hell – THE RED HAND is a hell of a story and a damn good book about a damaged town, a damaged man and yet the story comes out the other side offering some hope.

But as I was listening to Dane’s reading I was stopped because his performance was spot on.

A listener can not help but smile when Manny Calabrese, an old Italian jeweler whose voice never lost the old country, calls out to “Franky” Nagler. And his ethnic characterizations are both subtle and respectful.

But it’s at the story’s big moments that Dane’s reading excels: Reporter Jimmy Dawson’s four paragraph summary of the state of Ironton; the moments when Frank Nagler walks the dark city pondering the crime spree he is investigating and his own life with his sick wife Martha; the street fights and the crowd scenes that illustrate the rising tension in the city; and the continued edgy conflict between Nagler and Police Chief Inspector Chris Foley.

And then Martha. She is smart, funny, brave, adventurous and challenging and loves Frank Nagler to death. Any scene she is in sparkles, and at the end, when she and Frank deal with the consequences of her illness, the ache and anguish is palpable. Dane’s reading will stop you.

Anyway, why do all this? It’s not about being immodest. It’s about celebrating the talent that helps brings all artistic endeavors to light. It’s never just the work of one person.

 

The audiobook version of THE SWAMPS OF JERSEY is available here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNSW8Ls8Y64&list=UUhsP65gzzjDU1nYTmw2jOvQ&index=9&t=0s

https://books.apple.com/us/audiobook/the-swamps-of-jersey-unabridged/id1367196859

 

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Fiction, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The shriek

The shriek tore open the void

Like lightening rips a dark sky

Like a million souls unleashing the scream of a thousand years

That carries the wounded rage of us.

Did you see them?

The faces.

Eyes teared and bloody

Both soft and angry with the weight of all these sorrows

And searing with weariness.

Searing with weariness that the rising must come again.

Who will place an ear to your lips to welcome the whisper?

Whose hand to reach for yours?

Who will stand?

Who will witness?

Who will hear?

Who will speak?

The rising must come again.

Posted in Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, Sally Ember, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Leave a comment

THE RED HAND now available as Audiobook

The Audiobook version of THE RED HAND is finally available.

Thanks to Imzadi Publishing for, shall we say, reminding ACX (Amazon) that the book should be released.

Thanks also to Dane Peterson for recording and producing this version.

Here’s the link: https://www.amazon.com/Red-Hand-Nagler-Mystery-Mysteries/dp/B089DN6RG6/ref=tmm_aud_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

The audiobook version of THE SWAMPS OF JERSEY is available here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNSW8Ls8Y64&list=UUhsP65gzzjDU1nYTmw2jOvQ&index=9&t=0s

 Both are also available on iTunes. 

THE RED HAND: It’s the time of pay phones, fax machines and piles of paperwork.

And in Ironton, N.J., nine women have been killed, their deaths played out over months as fear grows in the city.

Into this scenario is newly-minted Detective Frank Nagler, eager to take on the task of finding the killer, but daunted by the description supplied by the medical examiner: “What we have here is an experiment in death.”

“The Red Hand” is a prequel to the award-winning Frank Nagler Mystery series. Among the characters we meet are Charlie Adams, a teenage hoodlum and Martha Nagler, Frank’s wife, whose love carries him through the bad times ahead.

Can an old-style detective story capture a modern audience?

It can if it is filled with characters that resonate, has a love story for the ages, settings that carry weight and is layered with issues that raise the story above the everyday.

It’s gritty, moving, probably confounding, but it resonates.

Women are missing. Missing would imply a willingness to leave.

Women are not missing: They were taken.

Kirkus Review featured a profile:

From the profile, written by Rhett Morgan: “Daigle paints such a convincing picture because in all the small cities where he worked, he saw former economic powerhouses slowly fading and corrupt developers and local politicians using the situation to their own advantage. It inspired him to create a character that wasn’t just a detective, but also a hopeful figure who could stand up to the powerful elements that were allowing crime to take root. “Somebody needed to stand up and say this is wrong,” Daigle says.

Nagler isn’t the only character with strong moral fiber, though. Daigle’s books feature a slew of strong women that challenge and push the protagonist through each case, including the savvy Lauren Fox, who’s heading up a project to revitalize downtown Ironton, and tough police officer Maria Ramirez. “I didn’t want any of them to be just pretty faces,” he says. “In the newspaper business, some of the best people I worked with were women reporters. They’re very brave, and they’re very smart.” The most important woman in Nagler’s world, though, is his late wife, Martha, whose untimely death provides him with a complex motivation—to recapture the era when she was alive and Ironton hadn’t yet fallen apart.”

The link: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/news-and-features/articles/michael-stephen-daigle/.

From the Kirkus Review of THE RED HAND: “This dense, engrossing prequel illuminates why Frank embraces Ironton before economic decline and corruption totally savaged the town. Ironton is a character that Daigle (The Frank Nagler Mysteries: An Anthology, 2018, etc.) brings to atmospheric life in his work: “The sun had squeezed out of the mud the greasy mix of rotten plants, moldy, sweating trash, motor oil that had leaked from dismembered, rusted cars parts, and the musk of dead animals, and then compacted it.”

The author’s pacing is immaculate in this gruesome thriller, as he ratchets up the tension as each additional body is found. He also captures a portrait of a once-thriving community in chaos as fear sweeps through Ironton. While the fledgling detective often finds himself adrift while investigating the case, Frank’s moral compass never wavers, even when the town and its officials are ready to lynch an unlikely suspect. This makes him almost a lone voice in the wilderness but his gut proves right in the end. What results is a taut look back at the birth of a memorable character.

A winning origin story for one of modern fiction’s expertly drawn detectives.”

 

The full Kirkus Review is found at this link: THE RED HAND.

 

“The Red Hand” was named a Distinguished Favorite in the 2019 Big NYC Book Contest

Named Second Place winner for mysteries in the 2019 Royal Dragonfly Book Awards

Named a Notable 100 Book in the 2019 Shelf Unbound Indie Book Awards

Named a Distinguished Favorite in the 2020 Independent Press Awards

A Nominee in the 2020 TopShelf Book Awards

 

Posted in Bergen County Cooperative Library System, Fiction, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, http://www.sallyember.com, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Mystery Writers of America, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, www.michaelstephendaigle.com | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chains

We locked ourselves up; always have.

In ships, in ghettos, in little boxes.

Small spaces in which we can not breathe

Spaces in which we die.

Divided by faces and beliefs, voices and dances.

My people would not do that.

 

Oh, but you. But you.

You’re from over there.

I see what you’ve done,

I know what you want:

You want what I have.

My people would not do that.

 

There is a line.

Someone drew it.

Rattle that fence all you want.

Whack it with that chain.

See who comes.

See who cares.

My people would not do that.

 

We are always looking skyward

Seeking freedom.

We always want what is better, newer, some thing that is ours.

But reaching is hard when we are always standing in the fetid soil

That we have diseased:

Weighted, loaded, oppressed, shared

Blamed, hated.

All of us.

Distained, ignored, diminished,

Pushed in to corners, inside fences,

Killed with gas and bullets and hate.

My people would not do that.

 

Wrapped in chains.

All of us.

 

(Photo by Stephen Hickman, via Upsplash)

 

Posted in BooksNJ2017, Greater Lehigh Valley Writer's Group, Hackettstown Public Library, Hot in Hunterdon; Georjean Trinkle, Imzadi Publishing LLC, Michael Stephen Daigle, Paramus Public Library, Parsippany Public Library, Sally Ember | Tagged , | Leave a comment