GARETH’S CORNER: “DEATH AND DESTRUCTION SERIES” by Patricia Logan

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TITLE: Death and Destruction
AUTHOR: Patricia Logan
SERIES: Death and Destruction – book 1
COVER DESIGN: AJ Corza
PUBLISHER: Westburg publishing
GENRE: Mystery / Suspense
E-BOOK: yes
PRICE: $ 4.99 on Amazon
LENGHT: 460 pages
RELEASE DATE: 26th May 2016

BLURB: Forced to go into witness protection, ATF Special Agent Thayne Wolfe, is less than thrilled. The State’s Attorney needs him to testify against one of the most ruthless and notorious arms dealers in the world. Expecting boredom and lots of daytime television, he instead ends up with a ridiculous new job, a stupid new name, and the world’s most annoying shadow. Jarrett Evans, is nevertheless tasked with keeping Wolfe alive long enough to put Mills Lang and his crew away for the rest of their miserable lives.

Jarrett Evans, former Marine, has always been a free spirit, doing the dirty work for Uncle Sam whenever and wherever he’s needed. One of the best snipers in the world, Evans is at peace with the man he’s become. That doesn’t mean he’s ever liked the cold-blooded killer who stares back at him from the mirror every day. The moment he meets pretty boy Thayne Wolfe, things start a slow change and redemption begins to sound possible.

Mills Lang, the world’s most ruthless arms dealer, is little more than a serial killer in his own right. Rotting away in prison with nothing but time on his hands, Lang is determined to destroy the man he allowed into his inner circle. Thayne Wolfe will die in the most painful way… along with anyone he loves.

*Please Note* Title includes an exciting excerpt from “Flash and Bang”

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TITLE: Flash and Bang
AUTHOR: Patricia Logan
SERIES: Death and Destruction – book 2
COVER DESIGN: AJ Corza
PUBLISHER: Westburg publishing
GENRE: Mystery / Suspense
E-BOOK: yes
PRICE: $ 4.99 on Amazon
LENGHT: 347 pages
RELEASE DATE: 31st August 2016

BLURB: If running from a hit man wasn’t scary enough, ATF agent Thayne Wolfe, has a new challenge in his life and this one may be even more dangerous than the last. He has to figure out how to work with his reckless new partner, a handsome former Marine who seems to have a death wish
Jarrett Evans never stays in one place very long and being chained to a desk doing paperwork is not his idea of entertainment. His lover and new partner at the ATF seems to find ways to throw a monkey wrench into all his fun, especially when Thayne wants to curtail his need to jump off ten story buildings.

When their boss sends them to San Diego to investigate a fireworks accident, he figures Jarrett can’t hurt anyone playing with sparkers, not even himself. The fact is, danger, intrigue and Jarrett’s dubious past seem to follow the men wherever they go.
From a Marine base at the Mexican border to an explosion in LA’s Chinatown, they aren’t prepared for a seriously pissed off militia, a smoking hot ex-lover, and more guys who want them dead.
The sparks will fly in and out of the bedroom in Flash and Bang.

(Flash and Bang contains an exciting excerpt from book 3, Slip and Slide)

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TITLE: Slip and Slide
AUTHOR: Patricia Logan
SERIES: Death and Destruction – book 3
COVER DESIGN: AJ Corza
PUBLISHER: Westburg publishing
GENRE: Mystery / Suspense
E-BOOK: yes
PRICE: $ 4.99 on Amazon
LENGHT: 352 pages
RELEASE DATE: 19th October 2016

BLURB: ATF special agents, Thayne Wolfe, and his partner, Jarrett Evans, have gotten into sticky situations in the past but nothing prepares them for the daunting task of being loaned out to a coal mine in West Virginia where Jarrett’s grown up. Investigating a deadly mining explosion may be the end of them yet.
In one of the most beautiful places on earth, Jarrett is familiar with the territory, growing up working in a nearby mine for a couple years before joining the Marine Corps just after high school. When he and his partner encounter a dubious mine CEO, two ATF agents who they’re tasked to investigate, and a good ‘ol boy who has a pickaxe to grind, all they can hope, is to solve this case before ending up dead and buried in that mine.
From the beaches of California, to the coal-rich mountains of Appalachia, Jarrett’s dubious past seems to rear its ugly head wherever they go. Join our heroes as they are forced to face danger, fear, and maybe the most frightening thing they’ve ever faced together… family.
Slip and Slide contains an exciting excerpt from Locked and Loaded (Death and Destruction Book 4)

 

14483774_10202179950336519_1469719546_nWelcome to this month’s Gareth’s Corner! It is my pleasure to feature a series review of Death and Destruction by Patricia Logan. Although this series is a departure from some of Patricia’s previous works, I found it one of the most riveting of all. I could sum up the entire series in one sentence: Death and Destruction is a testosterone-soaked rollercoaster ride from start to finish! However, it would be unfair not to point out that the series is yet another example of Patricia’s depth of imagination and range of subject matter.

Patricia Logan weaves humor throughout this tale of suspense and drama. Her characters are both believable and endearing. The story unfolds at an acceptable pace. Continuity is flawless. Although DEATH AND DESTRUCTION is not a dance among the daisies, there is definitely something for the romantics among us. However Thayne and Jarrett are two he-men on overload. So don’t expect roses or expensive chocolates …

The first book, entitled DEATH AND DESTRUCTION introduces us to Thayne Wolfe a government agent fresh from a two year under cover assignment. As the star witness in a federal prosecution case, Thayne’s life remains in jeopardy. He is assigned a bodyguard who is tasked with keeping him alive to testify. Enter Jarrett Evans, ex-marine and former mercenary with a very checkered past. These two alpha males seemingly have little in common … other than their sexuality. Death and Destruction is packed with sexual tension even after they succumb to the mutual sexual attraction for each other. After all, Wolfe is “just another assignment” for the muscle-bound Evans … or so he attempts to convince himself.

The two soon find themselves running for their lives from a tenacious hitman. The question is, “Who is the real target of the assassin’s bullet?”

FLASH AND BANG is Patricia’s second installment of this series. Thayne and Jarrett are settling into their new roles as partners with ATF. This book takes us into the complex world of fireworks following an incident that killed and injured several spectators. Jarrett finds himself confronting memories he assumed were long forgotten. Will Thayne and Jarrett’s love survive his personal struggle?

SLIP AND SLIDE centers around the coal mining industry in Jarret’s home state of West Virginia whose majestic mountains provide a backdrop for this third installment. Thayne and Jarrett are assigned to investigate allegations of potential bribery amongst mine officials. Although Georgia is my home, West Virginia is the state where I now reside. Having researched the mining industry from the ground to the bowels of the earth, I can confirm that Patricia was right on-target. Even down to the spotty safety measures used by coal conglomerates – Patti was spot on.

This is my favorite installment of the series (thus far). My favorite for the sole reason that despite the intrigue and near demise of one of the main characters, SLIP AND SLIDE was truly the first time we examined the dynamic of Thayne and Jarrett. We witness Jarrett interact with his estranged family. We see the mask of invulnerability slip from his proud brow. We feel the raw emotions of love and fear encompass the two while they fight for their very survival. Then we all heave a sigh of relief as they admit just how much they mean to each other.

My gratitude and congratulation to Patricia Logan for ensnaring me in this series. Remember the “testosterone-soaked roller coaster ride” I mentioned? Well, I’m thrilled that the ride isn’t over yet!

It is my pleasure to introduce Patricia Logan!

 

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Gareth:        Welcome, Patti! It is a pleasure to have you join us.

Patricia:       Well, thank you for inviting me. And thank you for such a wonderful review!

Gareth:        You earned it, Madam Author.

Patricia:        LOL!

Gareth:        What was your inspiration to write the Death and Destruction series?

Patricia:        I created the character of Jarrett Evans in my third Marine Bodyguards book when my main character (also a bodyguard) was fired. He needed a replacement so he called an old buddy from his Marine Corps unit, Jarrett Evans, to fill the position. As it turned out in that book, THE BRAT, Jarrett was a very complex guy with a very dubious background. You know the type. He was a Marine, mercenary for hire, and all around unsavory character. When I finished the book, I knew his story wasn’t over but rather than writing a fourth Marine Bodyguard book, I decided I liked his character so much that I would give him a series of his own.

Gareth:         Your main characters seem to exude this unbridled masculinity. At least it seems that way to me. And I don’t have a muscle-bound alpha-male fixation.

Patricia:        I like to write about macho guys. It’s not that I’ve never written twinks or drag queens, but there’s something special about the way two big guys with hard muscles can come together in bed and just manhandle the hell out of each other. I decided to give Jarrett a macho hero so Thayne Wolfe, a special agent with the ATF, became his lover. I chose to make Thayne the aggressor in bed because I love law enforcement types and have written several cops. Take Tyler Winston, a detective in my fictional town of Westburg, Texas, outside of Austin for instance. Cassidy Ryan is an LAPD detective who also appears in many of my books.

Gareth:        Interesting …

Patricia:        That’s what I like. I write guys who are living breathing fantasies taken from the pages of all those romance novels I read growing up. But, these guys are better because all they can see is each other. I love that dynamic. They inspire me.

Gareth:         The fourth installment of this series is titled LOCKED AND LOADED. It is scheduled for release in January of next year?

Patricia:        You got it!

Gareth:         I think Lorraine Lesar will be reviewing that one.

Patricia:        I adore Lorraine! She always treats me fairly in her reviews. What more can an author want?

Gareth:         Your main characters Thayne and Jarrett mirror society’s crumbling reliance on negative stereotypes of the GLBT community. However the premise of the series hinges upon two men forced together by unique yet potentially lethal circumstances. The complexity of your storylines makes me wonder just how vital research is to writing a book.

Patricia:        It is incredibly important!

Gareth:         Share with us, Patricia.

Patricia:        If I open a book and begin to read about a place I know like Los Angeles, and the author gets it wrong, it pisses me off. My friend AJ Llewellyn and I have discussed this. She’s interviewed cops in Honolulu and US Marshals as well. They think it’s hilarious that Steve McGarrett can drive across the island of Oahu in fifteen minutes on Hawaii 5-0. Okay, that’s TV but you get the drift. If you cannot be accurate – don’t write it. Know something about what you’re researching. I spend allot of time researching locations, occupations, and in my case, weapons, since I write a lot of military and cop heroes.

I learned how important research was when I was writing my fifth novel, A VERY GOOD YEAR. It’s about a sommelier and the wine industry in Central Texas. Who knew Austin is second only to Napa Valley in California in the production of fine wines in the US? I had to do a hell of a lot of research for that book.

Gareth:         Are you serious? I would have never guessed central Texas! I would’ve thought Virginia or someplace. Not Texas.

Patricia:        Quite a surprise isn’t it?

Gareth:         You could say that. What is the most emotionally taxing bit of research you had to do?

Patricia:        Some things are easier to research than others. In my book THE THIEF, I wrote about artwork looted by the Nazis during WWII. That research was hard but rewarding. I had to learn about individual painters and in some cases, their individual works. It was fun but lengthy. I think I spent two weeks going over everything I could find on the Holocaust. Talk about exhaustive and painful.

Gareth:         I’m sure it was.

Patricia:        On the other hand some things you write about come from your own life. In the Death and Destruction series, one of Jarrett’s friends, Ambaris, is an Assyrian. My husband is Persian and I speak Farsi so the Farsi in the book is accurate. We have several Assyrian friends that have settled in Turlock, California so writing that part of the book was taken from real life.

However, in FLASH AND BANG I had to contact a fireworks expert. He was such a help that I put an acknowledgement in the front of the book to Mike. He was instrumental in helping me to keep the fireworks descriptions accurate. In SLIP AND SLIDE (the book about the coal mining industry), I did weeks of research on coal mining, the process, the machines used, etc. I spent an entire day reading about coal mining disasters. Can you say depressing? Damn. The disaster in the story is incredibly accurate because it actually happened. Many of the details were changed but the explosion of the seals caused by methane and the torch the miners were using to cut roof straps all happened in real life.

Gareth:         This happened before I moved to West Virginia. However, I have read about it. It is sad and rather accurate.

Patricia:        I do my best to be accurate. I think it’s an author’s duty to his or her readers to do so. I expect no less from the authors I read.

Gareth:         I remember when I wrote a critique of a speech given by one of the State Senators back in Georgia. The critique centered around a decision he made not to support a specific bill. On that basis, I assumed he had a certain stand on the issue. Unfortunately, my critique cited his history of voting a certain way on the issue in question. Well – it turns out that my failure to research led to an incorrect assertion. It may sound trivial but we ‘got letters’ as they say. Nearly cost me my job. Although I retracted and ate my share of crow, severe damage was done to my credibility. Took me a long time to weather that situation. Since we’re all friends here, give us an example of how lack of good research blew up in your face? I have total respect for your writing – or else you wouldn’t be sitting here now. One of the things I value about you is your commitment to thorough research – but tell us a mistake you made … what are you willing to admit in public?

Patricia:        I’d die of embarrassment if that happened to me, Gareth. I’m glad you weathered it. Fortunately, I’ve had really good editors who have caught things before they ever went to print. Several years ago, I wrote a book with Sue Brown and Lisa Worrall, both Brits. My book was set during the US Civil War and it mentioned that the King of England at the time was King Edward, I believe. I thought that I had thoroughly researched the king and when Sue read my story, she told me that it was actually during Queen Victoria’s rein. I argued with her until she told me that she was pretty sure the old battle axe was still on the throne at the time. LOL! I love Sue. When I opted to leave my version in the book, I got called out in reviews. OOPS. Yeah, when writing about a British Monarch, listen to the Brits, not Wikipedia.

Gareth:         Or you can ask a die-hard Anglophile like me. Lorraine is an Essex girl. However, I think I could outdo her on British history. Back to the book you were writing. Which King Edward were you speaking of?  The first King Edward was Edward the Confessor of the House of Wessex. He was deposed by William the Conqueror in 1066. Of course King Edwards I,II and III were of the House of Plantagenet. The years were 1272-1377 I think. Edward I … Edward Longshanks whose skeleton was found in a car park in Leicester a couple years ago. Then there was Edward IV of the House of York. The king who reigned twice? War of the Roses? Then his son Edward V. Reigned for two months. Scholars think he was murdered probably by his uncle Richard III in 1483.

Patricia:        Nobody likes a smartass, Gareth. LOL …..

Gareth:         True. But British history is a passion.

Patricia:        I can tell. Georgia. West Virginia and British history. In that order?

Gareth:         LOL … I know you always write a blurb about your next book and the conclusion of each previous book. However, I don’t read them. I like to be surprised. With that said, would you care to give us a bit of a teaser about book four?

Patricia:        In LOCKED AND LOADED Mills Lang, the arms dealer from Death and Destruction, is back with more weapons to sell and in this book, he has a chemical weapon which is literally up for sale to the highest bidder. Jarrett goes in undercover with Mossad agent Adael Dayan, a former lover of Jarrett’s whom you all met in Flash and Bang. Of course with Adael working with Jarrett once again, Thayne gets relegated to sit this case out and watch from the sidelines. He was undercover with Mills Lang’s crew early in Death and Destruction, so if he’s sent in, he’ll be recognized. Of course, the fact that he has to tolerate Adael being brought back into Jarrett’s life because he has an in with Lang, is really tough on Thayne and it will test their love and their relationship. This one is fun for a lot of reasons but darker than the other books as well. I have a special prologue for book 5 planned to put in the back of Locked and Loaded and it will lighten the mood, though.

Gareth:        How long have you been writing m/m fiction?

Patricia:        I wrote Leather Nights, my first m/m book, in 2008. It took forever to find a publisher for it. It was filled with stereotypical characters, over the top insta-love, and mushy talk in bed. I was a crap writer then but I have since rewritten and cleaned up a lot of that in the book; still, my writing is about as far from that stuff now as it can be. I am different, my readers are different, and I’ve grown as an author.

Gareth:         Tell us about your journey to the m/m genre.

Patricia:        I lost my career (real estate mortgage) in 2008 when the market crashed. At 47, I tried to find some type of job and went on interview after interview but when you’re overqualified for even the most menial job, no one will hire you. I sat home and sulked and began to read through my huge library of romance novels, buying more and more. I made a transition in my reading from MF romance to MFM to MMF and finally MM. Once I got there, that was it for me. I stopped and sat down to write my own book because believe it or not, there wasn’t much good… really good… MM stuff on the market back then and only a handful of MM authors. I never looked back and rarely read anything else these days… when I have the time to read that is.

Gareth:         You have precious little time by the look of things! Writer, grandmother, cookie-baker? You have almost as many hats as you do inspirations of creativity. Do you find it taxing to juggle a full workday with your family and personal obligations?

Patricia:        Not anymore. I used to. My kids are all grown now, with the exception of Sasha who’s in high school. She’s my baby. My grandkids have moved out with their mom so now, it’s quieter here. I still cook and clean and keep house but it’s easier to remain a full time writer than it used to be.

Gareth:         Last month Rain Carrington was quite emphatic that you have been her mentor from the get-go. Do you find it rewarding to help guide new authors along their own creative journey? If so, I would love to introduce you to someone who could benefit from your experience and your marketing savvy.

Patricia:        I adore that girl. I find it incredibly rewarding to help and guide new authors if asked. Rain was humble and took criticism very well and that impressed me. If you can’t take criticism, you won’t go far in this business. Trust me when I say that you will get some pretty vile reviews, especially in your earlier works. She was driven and that is incredibly important. I am too. I feel that I am a born leader and have owned two companies, which were successful. Before that, I was a manager in every job I ever worked. I demand excellence of people and I am an honest critic. I like to help people who are new. It’s really my wheelhouse.

My mentor was GA Hauser. My relationship with Amanda began the same way my relationship with Rain began. I was a huge fan, had read everything she’d ever written, and contacted her. We began a friendship that has lasted many years and I am so grateful to her for everything.

Gareth:        Any words of advice or encouragement for aspiring writers and authors?

Patricia:        Keep writing. Never stop. Write day and night if you can. Keep publishing new books. It’s the best way for you to get noticed and stay noticed. There are some one hit wonders out there but if you want this as a career, keep churning out new books.

For all that is holy, write what you know about or what you’ve researched thoroughly. If I read a gay sex scene from someone who has no idea of the mechanics, I will never pick up another one of that author’s books so please know what the hell you’re talking about.

Gareth:         I think I am better than that than I am at British history. Actually, that brings up an interesting point. As a gay man I can write a romantic scene with one hand and my brain tied behind my back. But I almost freeze up when it comes to writing a sex scene.

Patricia:        You are not the first person to tell me that very same thing. I guess a romantic scene is almost poetic. And a sex scene is much more limited.

Gareth:         Whew! Thought that I was an odd duck for a moment. Anymore advice?

Patricia:        Don’t be thin skinned. You will get criticism. Some of my early manuscripts came back from the editor with so many changes and red highlights, it looked like my editor bled all over it. I was a horrible writer but the stories were good. I just had to learn how to write. That comes over time and I can tell you, after writing and publishing nearly 50 books now, I am 1000 times better now than I was back then.

For the love of god, don’t get on FB and be a drunken idiot. LOL. I’ve seen it happen. I know that sounds basic but you as an author are your brand and when you are a jerk, you will lose your career before you start. Always always always treat your readers like gold. If they get on FB or email and tell you that you are Satan himself, thank them for their view and walk away. Don’t fight with readers and don’t respond to bad reviews. Always be kind and considerate of your readers. They pay your mortgage and put food in your family’s mouth… even if they criticize. Not everyone is going to love and adore your great words. They’re just not.

If you’re self-publishing, build a team. I have a great cover artist, editor, and formatter, and beta reader. Over the years we have created such a fantastic work flow that I couldn’t be more pleased. I’m so lucky to have these folks in my life.

Gareth:        Have you always been an Indie author?

Patricia:        No. I began my career with Torquere Publishing when they published my first book and then had two other defunct publishers. Once I had written 10 or 12 books, my dear friend and mentor, GA Hauser, encouraged me to self-publish. I took her advice and have been happily self-publishing for over four years now.

Gareth:        Are there any sub-genres where you feel less comfortable writing?

Patricia:        Not really, though I am slightly tired of writing BDSM because of the sheer magnitude of sex scenes that genre requires. I love to focus on plot and mystery and I don’t have that with BDSM with the exception of Silver Ties and Silver Linings which are murder mysteries. Writing sex is secondary to my newer books whereas, my earlier books are loaded with it. I try to limit sex to 3-4 scenes in a long novel at most. It’s formulaic but it works for me.

Gareth:         What most energizes Patricia Logan?

Patricia:        My writing. I get up every day and get my writing done early in the day. Next, my family. I love them all and getting to spend time with them is very important to me.

Gareth:         It has been almost a week since the election. The global community remains full of raw emotion and dread for the future. Without getting all political, what are your thoughts about things?

Patricia:        I’m really glad it’s over. It was a long and nasty election and regardless of who my readers supported, I’m pretty certain their feelings echo mine. It was as negative as any election I’ve ever seen and I’ve been voting in presidential elections since I first could in 1980. I hope the next one will be more civil. I know that I will continue to support the causes I believe in and as a MM author and mother to a gay man, I will support the cause of marriage equality as I always have. I thought we’d passed that hurdle but if something happens to put equality of any kind in jeopardy, the powers that be will hear my voice.

What do you want to see happen over the next four years, Gareth?

Gareth:         I want to see America heal. I feel this entire election cycle has been the most divisive event in our society in a long, long time. Gerald Ford took allot of flack for pardoning Richard Nixon after the Watergate Scandal of the early 70s. He said he did that so the country could begin to heal. Although it can be argued that it cost him the election in 1976, he put the welfare of our nation ahead of his political career. Perhaps, Donald Trump is echoing a similar sentiment. Are you familiar with his recent press conference?

Patricia:        No, I’m not. Please continue.

Gareth:         He said that after considerable soul-searching he has decided not to pursue any further investigation into Hillary Clinton. He said he doesn’t wish to hurt them further. He acknowledges that this was a very ugly time in American politics. However, now is the time for healing. Patti, he was definitely not my choice for President. However, one of the marvelous things about our government is our system of choosing a president. Some make the argument that the Electoral College is an antiquated system and that the popular vote should be the only vote that matters. After all, every other election from prom queen to state governor relies solely on the popular vote. But the fact remains that the law gives precedence to the Electoral College. That may change. However, that is not the way it is now. For better or worse Donald Trump is our President-Elect. I am a realist. As such I must believe that things will work out. It’s either that or live with a feeling of doom eating away at my soul. However, I feel that every person with a voice is duty-bound to hold our government accountable for a stronger commitment to Civil Rights, to acknowledge our role and responsibility to the global community and to endeavor to create a society united in our diversity. I guess for a realist I wear some rose-colored glasses.

Patricia:        I I wish we all had a pair of your glasses, Gareth. I can’t tell you how much I have enjoyed my time in Gareth’s Corner.

Gareth:         The pleasure was all mine, Patti. I just hope you will consider visiting again.

Patricia:        I thought that you wanted to have Rain and me as guests one month. Sort of like ‘dueling authors’?

Gareth:         Oh, indeed I do. However it was a surprise.

Patricia:        Oh. Sorry …

Gareth:         Who cares? I can’t wait till you come again!

Patricia:        You just tell us when and we’ll be here ….

Gareth:         You’ve got yourself a deal, Ms. Logan!

Patricia:        Oh, my, it’s getting late! Will Scott make dinner for you?

Gareth:         Sugar, ever since I taught my husband how to operate a skillet – there’s been no slowing him down!

Patricia:        So, we’ll talk soon?

Gareth:         You betcha darlin’! On behalf of our guest Patricia Logan – I will see you next time on Gareth’s Corner!

 

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