Posts Tagged ‘historical crime fiction’

Book Details:

Book Title: The Company Files: 1. The Good Man by Gabriel Valjan
Category: Adult Fiction, 251 pages
Genre: Thriller, Historical Fiction, Crime Fiction, Espionage
Publisher: Winter Goose Publishing
Release date: December 2017
Tour dates: Feb 12 to March 2, 2018
Content Rating: PG + M (No bad language but there is an attempted rape scene, and some violence.)

Book Description:

In 1948, Vienna was divided among four powers: France, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Jack Marshall had served with Walker during the war, and now, working together for The Company, they are tasked to do the inconceivable. Could former Nazis really be recruited to assist the U.S. in the atomic race? As their team moves forward, they quickly discover they are not the only ones looking for these men. And the others in the search may just have the objective of murder.

In this tale of historical noir, of corruption and deceit, no one is who they say they are. Who is The Good Man in a world where an enemy may be a friend, an ally may be the enemy, and governments deny everything?

To read reviews, please visit Gabriel Valjan’s Page on iRead Book Tours.

 

Buy the Book:

 

 

 

Meet the Author:

 

Gabriel Valjan is the author of The Roma Series from Winter Goose Publishing. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts, where he enjoys the local restaurants, and his two cats, Squeak and Squawk, keep him honest to the story on the screen.
Connect with the Author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest

411 on Books, Authors, and Publishing News Interview with Gabriel Valjan

 

Which was the hardest character to write? The easiest?

The hardest character in The Good Man to write was Sheldon. At face value, he is a complex and flawed individual. He is a suspected vigilante whom no jury would convict. He is twice social outcast in that he is a survivor of Auschwitz but also a Sonderkommando, whom some inmates considered collaborators. I explain in the Afterword that their role in the Nazi death camps was poorly understood and they faced frequent purges. Sheldon is also gay, a Jew, so he  has to endure the additional prejudices of homophobia and anti-Semitism. For added measure, he runs counter to the popular option of claiming Palestine as his homeland. The Good Man briefly addresses Israeli terrorism against the British over the Palestine Question. Finally, Sheldon finds himself as a surrogate father to a young Russian girl, who has not only survived a similar trauma but reminds him of his Russian heritage. Writing about and around the Holocaust, retribution and sticky political situations was a tall order. I wanted to avoid clichés and present a multidimensional character, who is heroic, tragic, and someone who you might want as your friend, and certainly not as your enemy.

What made you write a book about post-war Vienna, and the early days of the CIA?

When I looked around at what was in the field, so to speak, I encountered the Phillip Kerr Bernie Gunther novels, the le Carré Smiley novels, and, for Vienna specifically, the Frank Tallis Max Lieberman mysteries. Kerr’s Gunther walks the streets of Berlin as Hitler comes to power; Smiley is an intelligence officer during the war years into the Cold War; and Max Lieberman predates them all since he is a contemporary of Sigmund Freud. Before becoming acquainted with those three characters, I had begun to think the classic noir spy thriller was dead.

I was drawn to Vienna for two reasons. I see Vienna as the crucible in which the Cold War started. The city was divided into four zones, the American, the British, the French, and the Russian after World War II. There were refugees everywhere. I also chose Vienna because it was a Wild West after the war. Food and medical supplies were in short supply. In addition to the American and European presence, various Israeli street gangs roamed the streets.

How long have you been writing?

I began in 2008 by writing a novel and then in 2009, a short story a week. I think the only genre I have not attempted was romance. I’ve written crime fiction, horror, science fiction, and quote unquote “literary fiction.” The first novel remains unpublished. After spending a year writing all those short stories, I wrote The Good Man, which I had set aside but revised several times by myself and with the help of a line editor, and then with current publisher, Winter Goose Publishing, in 2017. The Good Man was the result of reading classical noir: Hammett and Chandler. The novel had two close calls with two different publishers, but they dropped it because they didn’t want to take a chance on an unknown writer (their words). Some of my short stories had been published and now I wanted to tackle the novel again. I had discovered the Italian writer Andrea Camilleri, author of the Montalbano series, and I was inspired to write the first book in The Roma Series, which was published in 2012.

What genre do you write and why?

I dislike using the word genre because I believe a good story is a good story. If by genre you are thinking of touchstones for expectation, then I would say that my novels are both crime fiction and thrillers. I consider The Good Man historical noir. 1948 Vienna provides a historical context and my characters make bad decisions with the best of intentions.

The 40s was a unique time. I wanted to recreate the atmosphere and politics of postwar Vienna in a way that still feels fresh and new, despite the historical nature of the story.  That period, with its intricately interwoven and constantly shifting loyalties, was unique, and I wanted to make use of it. I wanted to craft a story in which I could show the characters’ loyalties to their own countries, to one another, and yet have their own sense of ethics.

What is the last great book you’ve read?

Jane Goodrich’s The House at Lobster Cove. This was a debut novel that introduced me to a new author and to a historical figure, George Nixon Black (1842-1928), who has all but disappeared into history. Mr. Black was gay, the richest man in Boston at one time, and a talented architect. He designed Kragsyde, a Shingle Style mansion, which was demolished a year after his death, at Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts. Goodrich guides reader’s through a gay and very gentle man’s life through the Civil War and the Gilded Age. I should add that each copy of the book has deckle pages and is handmade.

Latest bio: Gabriel Valjan is the author of the Roma Series and The Company Files from Winter Goose Publishing as well as numerous short stories. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts, where he enjoys the local restaurants, and his two cats, Squeak and Squawk, keep him honest to the story on the screen.

Website: www.gabrielvaljan.com

Blog: https://gabrielswharf.wordpress.com

Purchase link: Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2COa5HY 

Enter the Giveaway!
Ends March 10, 2018

CLICK HERE for the Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Advertisements

Crime Fiction

Date Published: 7/4/2017

Are the deacons of Shalom Bethel invincible? Legend has it that in the 1940’s, they came out of a gunfight with holes in their clothes but not their skin. Bullets bounced off of them. They walked through buckshots like water. That story is passed down by every deacon. The legend of Stephen Stone. That legend is about to be tested.

On the heels of a nightclub triple murder, a mysterious blizzard hits Shalom, a city normally warm year round. The blizzard brings with it bitter memories and ghosts Deacon Oak East thought were long gone: his prior drug conviction, his on and off relationship with his wife, the gruesome murder of his father and the role he played in it. But it’s not just the past that haunts him. In the present, a homicide detective wants him and the deacons for the nightclub murders. And a gangster named Cap Morgan wants revenge. The snow is falling. But soon, it will be raining bullets. Is the legend true? Are the deacons of Shalom Bethel bulletproof?

About the Author


James Fant is an award winning author who lives in Charleston, SC with his lovely wife and two hilarious children. He received a degree in biology from College of Charleston and a master’s in business administration from Charleston Southern University. His love for literature was forged by the works of Eric Jerome Dickey, Walter Mosley, and Stephen King. He also finds inspiration from screenwriters Shonda Rhimes, Aaron Sorkin and Kurt Sutter. Literarily, James has always been drawn to intelligent yet imperfect characters and he writes novels with them in mind.

 

Contact Information

Website: http://www.jamesfantbooks.com/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/jamesfantbooks

Twitter: @jamesfantjr

Blog: https://jamesfantbooks.wordpress.com/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jamesfant/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5763237.James_Fant

 

Purchase Links

 

Giveaway

Heart of Stone eBook
 

The early evening air cooled Oak’s skin and caused it to tighten. The sensation was odd, like someone pinching him but all over. Bringing his skin cells closer together? The thought was crazy and Oak traveled back to a biology class in which the teacher was showing a video on mitosis. Cells were dividing, giving rise to two daughter cells with the same number of chromosomes. There were different phases. One in particular where the chromatin seemed to span the two fused cellular bodies. So cool. That’s not what was happening with Oak’s skin. It was tightening…stiffening. And how would that look under a microscope?

He shook those thoughts, jogged up to the duplex and slapped the knocker three times. The door opened and he saw Moody Norco. The man who hated his guts.

“Come on in,” Moody said. “You want something to drink?”

“Nah, I’m working. What’s up?”

“Nothing much. Getting over a cold.”

“No. I mean what’s up?”

“You mean the money?”

“I always mean the money when I ask that question.”

Moody was devious and dangerous. Instead of repelling Oak, this fact attracted him. Pulled him to the man like gravity. An invisible yet powerful force that he couldn’t escape.

He carried the weight of the world into Moody’s apartment that evening. His uncle had kicked him out the house. He had lost the women he loved. And then there was that nagging guilt, the thought that God would never forgive him for what he had done eight years before. Life had burdened him. Perhaps this devious dude was just dangerous enough to remove that burden.

Oak snapped his fingers in Moody’s face. “Come on, man, I don’t have all day.”

“I’m going to warn you right now,” Moody said, “it’s been slow.” He motioned to a half-naked woman who scampered into the back room.

“I don’t care how slow it’s been. You’re delinquent yet again. Frankly, I’m fed up with it.”

Moody’s eyes narrowed.  He tightened his fist but nothing more.

“Tell your girl to hurry up with the money,” Oak said.

“C’mon. Let me fix you some Cognac. I know you like that Yack! With Coke, right?”

“Man, you’re trying my patience!” Oak pushed Moody out of the way and stomped into the bedroom, where he figured the woman was counting the money. But there was no woman. Instead, there was an open window, curtains dancing in the breeze and two guys holding sawed off shot guns that were aimed at Oak’s chest.

“You sure you don’t want something to drink?” Moody asked again with a smile as he brandished a silver Saturday Night Special.

“Truth be told,” he said, his pistol pointed at Oak, “I hate you! Why did you all of a sudden get to be boss of the streets? You haven’t put in work. You haven’t done dirt. And what’s worse, if war comes, you’d never be man enough to squeeze a trigger. You’re not a boss!” Moody and his two gunmen backed Oak into the living room. He asked, “You’re not gonna beg for your life?”

“Not at all,” Oak replied.

“Well, I gotta say I’m disappointed.”

Oak shrugged. Sighed. “Well I’ve seen too much evil. Been the cause of too much pain. Being murdered like this is a fitting end.”

“You’re not gonna cry or try to make a deal?”

“Nah. If you’re gonna shoot me, get it over with already.”

Moody chuckled. Smiled. Then his lips straitened. “This wasn’t what I imagined would happen. In my mind, I saw you sniveling, snot dripping over your lips as you begged for your life. Forget about the money. Just don’t kill me, Moody! I would demand that you call me the king. You are the king!  Then, I’d make you get down on your knees, your hands folded in prayer and praise. But…”

Oak jumped at Moody like he was going to throw a punch. Moody flinched. His boys flinched too.

“Unbelievable,” Oak laughed. Then he screamed, “Do it!”

Shot guns lifted. Forestocks pumped. Snub nose hammer pulled back. An engine roared and the hood of a SUV came crashing through sheetrock and plaster. It was Sampson, Oak’s bodyguard. Crashing through the wall. Shooting through the windshield.

Shots blazed from every direction. Glass shattered. Sampson took one in his shoulder but served several to Moody and his boys. As they hit the floor, Sampson yelled, “Lay down and stay down!”

“O!” he screamed as he grunted his way towards him. “O.E.!”

“What?!”

“Are you wearing a vest?”

“Huh?”

He patted Oak’s chest and back. “Oh my goodness!” he said. “You’re not wearing a vest!”

Oak looked at Sampson and saw that he was bleeding heavily. He took off his shirt and pressed it against his wounded shoulder. He said, “We gotta get you outta here.” Then he helped Sampson to the passenger side of the SUV, got in the driver’s seat, and slowly backed the out of the rubble.

As he drove to Shalom Memorial Hospital, images of the shootout replayed in his head. The ear splitting pops and mind numbing explosions. He racked his brain for a reason why he was still breathing.

He said, “I’m sorry, Sampson.  I should have been the one to get shot back there.”

“You did get shot.”

“What?”

His bodyguard took a deep breath. Winced in pain. “They lit you up, man. You were getting popped left and right.”

“Sampson,” Oak smiled warily, “were you smoking dope while I was in the apartment?”

“I’m serious!” Sampson screamed. “Bullets just bounced off of you. At first I thought it was the adrenaline playing tricks on my mind. But nah. You were just walking through those bullets. I know what I saw.”