Friday, March 25, 2011

Want a chanc to win a copy?

All answers can be found in the excerpt of Her Own Best Enemy: http://www.cynthiaju...own-best-enemy/

1. What is Keith’s job in the Special Forces?

2. What is the name of Grace’s son?

3. Who took Grace’s son?

4. What was Keith’s nickname for Grace in high school?

5. What’s the name of the bar where Grace and Keith are supposed to meet?

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Please Welcome Cynthia Justlin and her wonderful book

Smoke wafted through the air, tinted pink and yellow by the flashing neon lights. Two scantily clad women undulated up on the bar’s silver stage. Grace scowled, sliding deeper into the velvet-lined booth.

“So, tell us a bit about why you’re both here.” The interviewer from WAZT had to shout over the unrelenting bass emanating from the Cheshire’s loudspeakers.

“He picked this dive,” Grace said, hitching her thumb in Keith’s direction.

Keith’s jaw tightened. He tugged the baseball cap further down on his head. “This is strictly off the record, right? No one can know I’m here.”

“This isn’t about you,” Grace slung back. Her son’s life was on the line, and he was worried about his own neck?

“If I’m locked up somewhere, how is that going to help your son?”

A bright strobe light cut across his features, illuminating the gold flecks in his hazel eyes as he stared at her. Something hot and tight lodged in Grace’s chest. Not now. Even at his cruelest, Keith had always had the power to reduce her to a puddle of want.

She straightened, turning her focus back on the woman from WAZT and ignoring the lingering heat of Keith’s gaze. “Ryker and his dad went missing two days ago.” Tears pricked her eyes and she took a moment to smooth a hand down her son’s photograph. God, she missed him. She couldn’t shake loose her fears. “I--I think they’re in danger.”

“What makes you believe that?” The interviewer leaned in, adjusting her digital recorder as if she was worried she might miss a juicy piece of information.

“Because Keith knows more than he’s telling.” There. She’d said it. Who cares if Keith got mad at her? Keeping the information to himself could get her son killed, but it was just like him to think of his own agenda first.

Keith could’ve sworn that Grace was deliberately trying to bait him. “Look, we’re not dealing with your average, every day criminal here.”

There were very few people he trusted, and unfortunately for her, she wasn’t one of them. He was about to deliver that snide bit of news when he caught sight of her, awash in the tinted glow of neon lights. She was staring at the picture of her son as if she could will him back to her. The tears sparkling on her lower lashes kicked him in the gut. This was killing her.

“I can’t risk going on record with what I know. If word gets out--this man won’t hesitate to retaliate.” He reached out a hand and gently nudged Grace until she looked up at him. “I won’t put your son in the line of fire.”

He could tell he’d surprised her by the way her breath hitched and her green eyes grew wider. Damn, she was pretty when she looked at him with her heart in her eyes. A woman like her could get a man like him in all sorts of trouble. He dropped his hand from her smooth jaw and turned to the anchor from WAZT in an effort to break all connection to Grace. It didn’t help. He still wanted her. Still wanted to mean something to her.

The Cheshire’s front doors slammed opened, two men brandishing submachine guns stepped inside the bar. Bullets peppered the stereo and cut the music to a screeching halt. Keith threw himself at Grace and dragged her under the table. The smell of stale alcohol assaulted his nostrils. He pressed his face to Grace’s neck, inhaling the soft cinnamon vanilla scent on her skin instead. She trembled beneath him.

The interviewer ducked beneath the table. “What the hell is this?”

He pressed his mouth against Grace’s ear, ignoring the other woman’s shrill voice. “We’ll find your son, Gracie. You have my word, I won’t stop until he’s safe.”

But first he had to find a way to get them out of the Cheshire alive...

Monday, March 7, 2011

Please welcome Heather Haven

The Alvarez Murder Mystery Series

In my twenties and thirties, I spent my writing career in New York City creating short stories, comedy acts, plays, television treatments, ad copy, and commercials. I even ghost-wrote a book once. The idea of writing my own book didn’t occur to me until I was in my early forties. What can I say? I’m a late bloomer.

I read my first Nancy Drew book at the tender age of nine and have never looked back. I love a good mystery, in particular, humorous mysteries. Most of the time when I read a book, I like it to be on the humorous side. If I want to cry, I can pick up a newspaper and read the real estate or financial section. Tears will spring to my eyes immediately.

So I decided to write a funny murder mystery series, beginning with Murder is a Family Business. After all, a writer lives inside her or his head and if I have to be in there 24/7, I’d like to have a few laughs along the way. Also, I felt my mystery series had to include two important things: the recently immigrated, which is one of America’s natural resources, and the family unit.

Right off the bat, this wasn’t going to be a ‘classic’ family i.e., father, mother, sister, brother, and large dog, all careening around in a shiny SUV. Of course, these days a family like that is harder to find than a dinosaur with feathers. Oh, wait. Archeologists are digging those up all the time from unsuspecting peoples’ backyards. The Ozzie and Harriet family does still exist. Hello there!

But I wanted something unique. Hence, the Alvarez Family Murder Mystery Series, a family of detectives, was born. Quirky Lee Alvarez, the protagonist, along with her younger brother, Richard, are the products of a 35-year union between Roberto, a Mexican Immigrant who made good, and a Palo Alto blueblood, Never-Had-A-Bad-Hair-Day Lila Hamilton Alvarez. Roberto dies unexpectedly and like most sudden familial deaths, a realignment of the surviving members takes place. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad, but as a rule, it will be different. Who would have thought another death two years later would help rekindle what this small family had lost earlier?

Lee Alvarez is a combination of Sue Grafton’s Kinsey Millhone and Janet Evanovitch’ Stephanie Plum. This 34-year old divorcee works as a private investigator in the family business, Discretionary Inquiries, a successful Silicon Valley agency that normally deals with the theft of computer software. Her beautiful ice-princess mother, Lila, has taken over as CEO and head of the business. Lee’s younger brother, Richard, is the head of Research and Information Technology. Her Uncle Tío is a retired head chef of a well-known Mexican restaurant. Even the new foundling kitten, Tugger, becomes head of the household in Lee’s small, two-bedroom apartment over the family garage.

Lee isn’t head of squat, thank you. But she’s got the heart of a lion, eyes the color of twilight, and the instincts of a first-rate PI, which is good, because she’s always getting herself into trouble.

Some reviews for Murder is a Family Business

Heather Haven makes a stellar debut in Murder is a Family Business…. We will be hearing more from this talented newcomer. Highly recommended. Sheldon Siegel. New York Times Best Selling Author of Perfect Alibi.

The twists and turns the story takes will keep you turning pages, and the writing style will put you in the character's shoes. Expect to giggle, as the verbal exchanges between the family members may strike a real and familiar cord.

This is the first book in the Alvarez Murder Mystery series. I cannot wait until March for the second, A Murder to Die For. Ms. Haven has found a new fan. Dishin’ It Out, Ginger Simpson

There's a lot to like about this story. You got a 34 year old strong Latina woman, Lee Alvarez with a closet full of designer clothes, a classic car, and a kitten named Tugger (cause he tugs on your heartstrings.) I'm looking forward to the rest of this series. 5 STARS. Tara – Book Babes

For me, this was a great book. The writing was clever and I couldn’t stop laughing. This is the perfect beach book. And I’m actually pretty excited that the second book in the series comes out just as I’m planning to head to the beach in May. I can’t wait to see the antics of the Alvarez family continue. - Laura from The 100 Romances Project

"Wonderfully fresh and funny!" - Meg Waite Clayton, author of The Wednesday Sisters

"I got a real kick out of this thriller set in San Francisco and Silicon Valley....Reading about an intellectual property detective agency in a world where intellectual property theft is a big issue is new twist for a detective thriller. I enjoyed my trip into that world." - Catherine Evans Latta, author of Beirut Summer

Murder is a Family Business is available at MuseItUp Publishing direct buy:  HERE

Murder is a Family Business book trailer: HERE

To be continued....