DragonFish by Vu Tran #WhereIsSuzy

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Out Now

When I heard about this fresh approach to a blog tour I just had to join in and give it a go.  Instead of writing a review, or doing an author Q&A, us bloggers were given a hashtag and a challenge.

The Challenge

To read the synopsis of the novel, and in no more than a few minutes using only the information in the synopsis to write down where you think Suzy is.  Then using #WhereIsSuzy encourage our followers to do the same, to see just where the creative flows will take us. So here goes…

The Synopsis

Robert, an Oakland cop, still can’t let go of Suzy, the enigmatic Vietnamese wife who left him two years ago. Now she’s disappeared from her new husband, Sonny, a violent Vietnamese smuggler and gambler who is blackmailing Robert into finding her for him.

As he pursues her through the sleek and seamy gambling dens of Las Vegas, shadowed by Sonny’s sadistic son, ‘Junior’, and assisted by unexpected and reluctant allies, Robert learns more about his ex-wife than he ever did during their marriage. He finds himself chasing the ghosts of her past, one that reaches back to a refugee camp in Malaysia after the fall of Saigon, and his investigation uncovers the existence of an elusive packet of her secret letters to someone she left behind long ago. 

As Robert starts illuminating the dark corners of Suzy’s life, the legacy of her sins threatens to immolate them all.

 

Here’s what I thought….

Suzy is back in Malaysia looking for the son she left in the refugee camp to keep him safe from his gangster father, the man who trafficked her to America, and keeping herself and her secret son safe were the reasons behind marrying men who could protect her by whatever means necessary.

Then I thought I’d ask a couple of authors what they thought.

Vu Tran’s fellow No Exit stable mate Leigh Russell went for the pessimistic view.

I guess she went back to Malaysia to find the guy she left behind. Her boat capsized and she’s now at the bottom of the ocean….  

Graham Smith author of Snatched From Home had this to say.

She’s in a Western country trying to track down the daughter she gave birth to after being raped in Vietnam. The daughter is now grown up and like her mother has married a westerner.

And finally, I asked some of my friends…

Ann B said firmly

She’s In Las Vegas

Vic W agreed

I think she’s in Fremont Street, Las Vegas.

Marc F isn’t quite so sure

She could be anywhere, but I’m guessing looking for someone in Asia…..

and the fantastic Kate H really let her imagination go

Suzy is in the UK, in Telford. She got nervous in Vegas and running through one of the hotels a few streets off the strip, quite by accident stumbled into a World Archery Vegas archery competition. Initially, she hid in the audience, but shrewd as she is, she quickly started befriending one of the coaches who she had noticed eyeing her up. Throwing all her best moves at him and hiding her fear, she manages to convince him to allow her to accompany him home to the UK for a holiday. She spends the last of her cash on a fake passport and heads back to the UK with the archery team from Telford. Once in the UK, she gets her bearings and then disappears from her ‘holiday romance’ and slips away to start a new chapter in her life…

Now, using the comments tell us what you think, and if you want to find out for real?  Go pick up a copy of DragonFish now….

 

Sweet Nothing – Richard Lange

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imageEvery life is uncertain. Every choice is a danger.

Set on the dark side of Los Angeles, this is a masterful collection of edge-of-your-seat tales: a prison guard must protect an inmate being tried for heinous crimes. A father and son set out to rescue a young couple trapped during a wildfire after they cross the border. An ex-con trying to make good as a security guard stumbles onto a burglary plot. A young father must submit to blackmail to protect the fragile life he’s built. Sweet Nothing is an intense and gripping journey through real lives with big problems, from one of America’s great short story writers.

There’s nothing  sweet about it……

I’ve read nothing of Richard Lange before, and suffering from a bad case of book hangover, I picked up Sweet Nothing, with a view to easing myself back into the saddle, taking the short stories as ‘bite sized chunks’ I could easily pick up and put down.

After reading the first story, I wasn’t quite sure what to think, so I have to admit to putting the book aside to try again at a better time. When I finally picked it back up again, I was surprised how quickly each story passed before me.  It’s an interesting mix of tales that took me through a range of emotions as I read, which is something I’d more often associate with a full length novel, rather than from a collection of short stories.

With an eclectic mix of heroes and anti-heroes along with the dilemmas, decisions and tragedies of everyday life both, modern and in the past, forming the heart of each read, it’s a dark read, where the book title truly fits because there’s definitely nothing sweet about it.

The October List – Jeffery Deaver

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“You wait, desperately, for news of your daughter.
At last, the door opens.
But it is not the negotiators, or the FBI.
It is her kidnapper.
And he has a gun . . .
Two days ago, life was normal.
How did it end like this?”

If I had to sum The October list up in just one sentence, it would simply be this.

“Think Memento in a book.”

The October list is a fantastic fractured timeline novel, from one of the masters of twist in the tale stories. In a complete change from his usual heavily complex, and highly detailed novels The October List is snappy, smart and will have you instantly hooked. My suggestion is that before you pick up this book and start to read, you take your schedule, clear out a few hours and plan to be sat somewhere comfy with a relaxing drink when you do.