It’s About Time!! (Literally – Doomed to Repeat is All About Time – and it’s Available Now)

There’s a saying about boat ownership I’m identifying with right about now  – “The two happiest days of a boat owner’s life are the day he buys it, and the day he sells it.”

Having never owned a boat (yet) I can’t speak to the veracity of that claim, but I can say this…two of the happiest days for an author are the day he conceives of a new story idea, and the day the story is set loose on the world in the form of a new book.

Along the way there are highs and lows.

There are days where you think you’d better send the tux to the cleaners for that inevitable stroll on the red carpet…and days where you feel like donating your computer to charity because it is the vessel which contains the worthless drivel on which you have wasted countless hours.

In the end, it’s always worth it, because you never get tired of releasing a new book.

It’s a feeling that’s hard to accurately describe.

I wouldn’t put it up there with the pride you feel when your child graduates from college, but it’s at least as great as that day where you no longer need to buy diapers for him/her!

But I digress…

Let’s get to the meat of this here sandwich.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to announce the release of my eleventh novel (16th book) Doomed to Repeat!

From the day I released my first novel, Living the Dream, I’ve wanted to write at least one historical fiction story – and I can now scratch that off my writing bucket list.

I may even do it again. Somewhere around the time I was writing my second book I had an idea for a story whose beginning takes place during the Civil War…so that may become a reality in the near future.

In the meantime – Doomed to Repeat is available for purchase as a paperback, and for your kindle simply by clicking here or on the cover image above.

No spoilers, but the story begins in a top-secret bunker in Nazi Germany, and ends in current day Flagler Beach, Florida. Ike and Company have their hands full dealing with a corrupt US Senator (perhaps a bit redundant), two strangers who show up on the beach with amnesia, a mystery corpse, the CIA, and the KGB.

The advance reviews have been overwhelmingly positive so I’m pretty confident it will be well-received.

I hope you enjoy it!

 

As always – thank you for reading

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24 Minutes – Not Much Time, but a FREE Book!

Okay – I have good news and bad news…and more good news.

The good news is – beginning at midnight tonight (Tuesday night – Wednesday morning…however you want to look at it) and running until midnight Sunday November 18, 2018 my novel 24 Minutes will be FREE!

 

The bad news…this is the final giveaway of the Pre-Doomed-To-Repeat-Release Giveaway.

If you’ve been following along you know that I have made 8 titles available during this giveaway and nearly fifteen hundred books have been downloaded!

But wait…there’s MORE good news!

The reason the giving is over is…drum roll please…my new book Doomed to Repeat will be available for purchase at this time next week!!

I am really excited about this because the early reviews are saying Doomed is my best work yet…so I’m anxious to see how you rate it.

Oh – I almost forgot…still more good news – each time I release a new book I lower the price of one of my previous books to $0.99. Which means that once Doomed is available for purchase, the kindle version of Backseat to Justice will be priced at 99 cents!

 

I think that’s it…

24 Minutes will be the final selection offered in the Pre-Doomed-To-Repeat-Release Giveaway, Doomed to Repeat will be available next week and the price of Backseat to Justice will be slashed!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

As always – thank you for reading

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Bohemian Rhapsody…Just See It

The band Queen never appealed to me to the extent where I would say I loved them…or even really liked them.

They had several songs I liked quite a bit, a few that I didn’t mind and some that I would tolerate because I was too lazy to change the station or switch to another song.

On my radio program (Friday nights from 7pm-10pm on 97.3 FM – FlaglerBeachRadio.com) I throw in a Queen song every now and then because I know that there are listeners out there who really enjoy them.

With all that being said, I will now tell you that the movie Bohemian Rhapsody is a must see not only for those who have a Queen tattoo, but for the casual fan as well.

The hard-core Queen fans will love it no matter what I say about it, so I’m really directing this review at those who think “That’s the band with the gay guy who sang that song from Wayne’s World, right?”

Right. That’s who they are, but there’s a lot more to their story and Bohemian Rhapsody shows it by going far beyond another “rockumentary”.

It’s not done in the style of an A&E “tell-all”. There’s no grainy backstage footage overdubbed by a monochromatic voice describing the highs and lows of the band, and there are no interviews with groupies, roadies or record company execs revealing the band’s best-kept secrets.

What you get, instead, is a movie.

If you had never heard of Queen before, you would think it was a movie about a fictitious band from England who struggled to make it and eventually did. Naturally, they have setbacks and stumbling blocks, but the picture is so well made that you find yourself getting lost in the story regardless of your opinion and knowledge of the band and its history.

Naturally, the story revolves around charismatic front man Freddie Mercury and the way he took the band from total obscurity to superstardom nearly overnight.

I assume (although I could be wrong) that some of this was exaggerated to make things more interesting, either way…it’s a gripping rags-to-riches story.

The acting is near flawless, led by a brilliant performance by Rami Malek as Mercury. At times you are convinced you’re actually watching Mercury.

The casting for the other band members is also well done to the point where actor Gwilym Lee could actually pass for Brian May.

I have read other reviews which panned Bohemian Rhapsody on the grounds that the writers tip-toed around Freddie Mercury’s sexuality and his contraction of AIDs.

I disagree with those reviews.

I think the matter was handled well. As you watch the movie you are well aware of what’s going on in Mercury’s life without being subjected to gratuitous sex scenes.

Finally, there is the music.

As I stated earlier, I have never been a huge fan of the band’s music, but after watching the movie and getting a better feel for the band as four guys from England, as opposed to the members of one of the biggest rock bands of the 70s, I am going to re-examine their music with a more open ear.

I’m pretty sure I won’t regret it.

One final thought…don’t wait for Rhapsody to be released on DVD or NetFlix…see it on the big screen.

It’s well worth it.

 

As always – thank you for reading

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What Goes Around Comes Around – and it’s FREE BOOK Time Again!

Here we go again…another week – another FREE BOOK!!

My latest novel Doomed to Repeat is through the editing phase and is now being formatted. Release is probably a week away – two at most.

What that means is you get another FREE BOOK! And possibly another one next week!

This week the featured selection is Full Circle.

 

Full Circle has a very long history which you can read about here…but to make a long story short, it was my first attempt at writing in 1988. It was shelved, uncompleted, less than six months later, dragged out of mothballs in 2015 and rewritten from scratch, keeping only the main theme from the original.

The story is not much of a departure from my usual stories, although Ike only makes a brief cameo appearance. The one significant difference between Full Circle and my other work is the role played by Karma.

Karma is a funny thing.

We all want to believe in it, but at the same time we all know somebody who deserves a bit of comeuppance, yet never seems to get it. When people say to us ‘Don’t worry, Karma will take care of them’ we can only reply ‘When!’

Sometimes it seems that Karma is right up there with Santa Claus and The Great Pumpkin…you can only believe in them for so long without proof.

Well, I won’t tell you that Full Circle offers proof of Karma’s existence, but I will tell you it certainly offers a healthy does of hope! Sort of the way the empty glass of milk and the cookie crumbs kept your hopes alive for the existence of the big man in the red suit!

So, there you have it…Full Circle is Free from midnight, Tuesday November 6th, 2018 (Monday night…Tuesday morning – however you want to look at it) until midnight, Saturday November 10th, 2018.

Note: This offer is not affected by daylight saving time!

One final thing…this is week #6 of the 2018 Pre-Doomed-To-RepeatRelease Giveaway and so far I have given away almost 1,500 books!

I’ve also gotten several very nice reviews, and as any author will tell you – that makes my day!

 

As always – thank you for reading

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Hollywood Wastes Another Five Million Dollars

I’ve never written a movie review before, but as they say, there’s a first time for everything.

Movie spoilers are one of my biggest pet peeves so there’ll be none of that here. My only goal is to help you in your movie-watching decisions.

I happened to be home alone on Halloween this year and I had just finished a good book (The Last Detective by Robert Crais) so I decided I’d do something I’d never done on Halloween…watch a scary movie.

Perhaps a bit cliché, but it seemed like the thing to do.

I scrolled through NetFlix for a few minutes, avoiding the typical scary movie selections and settled on one that sounded promising, since it featured several things that I enjoy – SCUBA diving, sharks, vacations and good looking women.

The name of the movie was 47 Meters Down.

Synopsis:

Two sisters on vacation in Mexico decide to go shark spotting and end up trapped in a shark cage at the bottom of the ocean with very little air and several Great White sharks patrolling the water.

I didn’t want to waste the entire evening blindly scrolling through the entire NetFlix library, and the premise was intriguing enough, so I fixed myself a cocktail and hit play.

Where do I even begin?

I think we should start with something positive…the trailer was very captivating.

Okay – so much for positive…

Soon after American tourists Kate and Lisa meet a couple of guys in a Mexican nightclub, they decide to join these two strangers the following day SCUBA diving with sharks.

This is where the first red flag went up in my mind…you see, these guys aren’t associated with any reputable tourist operation…they just “know a guy.”

So the girls show up at the dock in the morning, and we meet the captain who will take them on their adventure (I didn’t even recognize Matthew Modine in the role of the captain). They take a skiff from the dock to the captain’s boat – second red flag – it looks like it’s staying afloat by luck. Then we see the shark cage! Red Flag number 3!! At least when Hooper showed up at Quint’s boat with his shark cage, it was shiny, aluminum and had flotation pontoons at the top. Our two heroines are about to climb into a rusty, steel cage that is probably older than both of them combined, but younger than the worn and frayed steel cable attached to it.

I suppose these things could be written off as foreshadowing – so let’s move on…

Javier and Louis (the two guys who talked the sisters into this party) go down in the cage first.

Now – maybe it’s just me, but since there is a suggestion of romantic interest between the four main characters, wouldn’t you think they’d go down boy-girl, rather than boys first, then girls?

Anyway…the girls finally get their turn (despite repeated objections from Lisa, who has never been diving before).

The cage is lowered to the pre-determined depth of five meters and all is good. Kate and Lisa are laughing, taking selfies and telling each other how awesome the experience is.

Meanwhile, I’m asking myself, how can they communicate with each other, and the boat, when their ears are not enclosed within the full face masks they’re wearing?

Oh well, movie magic, I suppose.

So after a couple of minutes, SURPRISE!, the tattered cable from which the cage is suspended snaps and sends the girls plummeting to the ocean floor, 47 meters down (such a clever title).

So here they are, after a panic-filled drop that seemed to last twenty minutes, (it was only about twenty seconds, but the director decided to show it in the style of an NFL replay booth) on the bottom of the ocean with one tank of air each, and they have to figure out how to survive and make their way back to the surface…

Being a certified SCUBA diver, I can say that this is where the real problems with the movie begin to rear their ugly heads.

The factual inaccuracies regarding diving are so numerous I don’t have time to list them all. All writers, myself included, rely on suspension of disbelief, but whoever was at the keyboard for this script didn’t even try to make it semi-plausible.

Every story needs a bad guy, so let’s look at the villains of the movie.

The sharks.

The (mostly CGI) sharks are portrayed as ruthless, predators lying in wait for a free meal. Apparently, if you’re a shark, you’d much rather wait for the two humans to come out of the cage than go after the countless smaller and slower fish within fins reach.

Chalk up another one for one of Hollywood’s biggest (and most inaccurate) stereotypes.

Our heroines have two options, stay in the cage until they run out of air and suffocate, or leave the cage and swim to the surface hoping not to become snacks for the sharks.

Like I said – no spoilers here, instead let’s look at the technical aspects of the film; the directing, lighting, camera work, acting, etc. were good, but not good enough to save a poorly written screenplay.

When you boil the whole thing down, my opinion of this movie is as follows;

There are many more worthwhile ways to spend an hour and a half than watching this movie. Cleaning the cat box, baking a nice roadkill-pot-pie, volunteering for clinical trials at the local STD clinic…the list is nearly endless.

On a scale of 1 to 10, I give it a one, only because Claire Holt (Kate) looks good in a bikini.

Perhaps the thing that bothers me the most is that Hollywood continually puts out this kind of crap as if they can’t find any good stories when there are thousands of independent authors out there with stories that would blow this garbage out of the water (pun intended).

47 Meters Down is about half as deep as this movie should be buried.

 

As always – thank you for reading

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Can You Believe it? More Free Books!!

What’s better than a #FREEBOOK?

Easy…Two #FREEBOOKs!

It’s been a month of giving and I’m not stopping yet!

First – there is the Pre-Doomed-To-RepeatRelease Giveaway – which is now in its fifth week, and this week’s featured selection is Eyewitness Blues.

 

Eyewitness Blues is the story of Martin Aquino, a young man who believes the only thing that can save him from the black cloud hovering over his life is the witness protection program.

Unfortunately…he hasn’t witnessed anything.

This doesn’t stop him from trying though – and that’s where the fun starts!

But wait!! There’s more!

As promised last week – because the Boston Red Sox won the World Series we have yet ANOTHER #FREEBOOK to celebrate!

 

I understand that not all of you are Sox fans…that’s okay, I still want you to have a copy of Blood in the Water for FREE! (If you really hate the Sox you can pretend it’s just another #giveaway.)

Blood in the Water is the second installment in my Steve Salem series.

Flagler Beach P.I. Steve Salem and his partner Val came onto the scene in the extremely popular Backseat to Justice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blood in the Water has them trying to solve three mysteries in one!

Both books are free from midnight tonight (Monday, Oct 29, 2018) until midnight Saturday (November 3, 2018).

If all goes to plan we will have one more giveaway before the release of the highly anticipated Doomed to Repeat – so stick around!!

 

As always – thank you for reading

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Time to Take Care of Some Unfinished Business – Another #FreeBook

Here we go – Week #4 of the Pre-Doomed-To-Repeat-Release Giveaway!!

I hope you’re enjoying the free books – and if you’ve already read them – I hope you’re telling others to get them while they’re free!!

Before we get to the next giveaway – here’s a little info for those of you wondering how long the giving will continue;

As you know – I started the giveaway the day I sent my new book – Doomed to Repeat – to the editor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The plan is to give away one book per week until Doomed is released.

Progress Report:

My editor – the amazing Karin Nicely – has returned the manuscript to me with her first round of edits. I am going through the edits and incorporating them into the work – once I finish (should be by the end of the week) I will send it back to her for round two. The process will repeat and possibly again for a third round if necessary.

Bottom line – I estimate two or three more weeks of free books…so get ‘em while they’re hot!! And don’t forget to tell your friends, family, coworkers, Uber drivers and strangers on the street about them!!

Back to business;

This week’s featured selection is Unfinished Business.

Unfinished Business – Free 10-23-18 thru 10 -27-18

Unfinished Business has an interesting background. It was my first novel not to feature Ike and the rest of the Flagler Beach regulars. Ike makes a brief cameo – but has very little bearing on the actual story.

 

Unfinished Business is sort of the intersection of my usual stories – and The Twilight Zone. It involves a mortician who, for reasons unknown to her, must carry out the dying thoughts of the bodies she embalms.

Speaking of The Twilight Zone – a very interesting (and a little spooky) thing happened to me while I was writing it – check it out here – it’s worth the read…

One final thought…October means it’s time for the Fall Classic and this year my team – The Boston Red Sox – are in the World Series. So if they win there will be an additional giveaway coming your way!

 

And this concludes today’s blog post…

 

As always – thank you for reading

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