The Warramunga’s Aftermath of War is book two in your Warramunga Trilogy. What were some new ideas you wanted to explore in this book that were different from book one?
When predators crawl out from the ruins in the aftermath of war…
My second book, The Warramunga’s Aftermath of War, which takes place after the end of World War II in early 1946, deals with the trafficking of children from the war-torn Philippines. I lived in the Philippines for 11 years from 1969 as VP with one of the major mining companies there. I learned a great deal about the havoc and suffering during the Japanese occupation, as well as some of the terrible things that happened later as criminals took advantage of the chaos in the aftermath of war. I felt a need to write about this.
I enjoyed the diverse characters in this book. Who was your favorite character to write for?
I enjoyed writing about all the characters in the book but probably Jacko O’Brien is the most pivotal character of them all. His friendship with Jamie Munro is an essential part of the story, as is his innate ability, being part aborigine, in tracking and bushcraft. His half-sister, Sarah, plays a big part and almost all the other non-criminal characters are based on real characters I knew well or worked with, both Australian and Filipino.
I enjoyed the mystery that drove this story. Did you plan this before writing or did it develop organically while writing?
A bit of both. I knew what I wanted to write about, and I knew the locations well. Once started, however, it did develop organically as I progressed with the writing.
What can readers expect in book three of the Warramunga Trilogy?
Book 3, Skills of the Warramunga, also takes place soon after the end of the war and deals with the consequences following the war, this time on the Malayan peninsula where war criminals are plotting to overthrow the authorities and gain control over the population of Malaya. I have also worked in this region and know it well.
The Warramunga’s Aftermath of War encapsulates the investigation into the post-war activities of a major criminal organisation with tentacles to the USA, Australia and South East Asia. When a fishing boat is discovered in distress in rough seas northwest of Darwin in late 1945, former army officer, Jamie Munro, and educated half-caste Warramunga aborigine, Jack “Jacko” O’Brien, who head the CIS in Darwin, are called on to investigate child smuggling operations financed by a shadowy ring of wealthy paedophiles.
This book is the second book of a trilogy. This follows The Warramunga’s War detailing the meeting of Jamie and Jacko on the battlefield during the Second World War and their activities working together with MI6 in intelligence during the remainder of the war.
Sara becomes torn between love and duty when she is chosen by the gods to assassinate the father of her beloved. Emperor Titus is the most powerful and ruthless villain in the world. Terminating him seems to be her only option, but Sara soon finds that there is so much more to the tyrant than meets the eye. Titus takes Sara on a journey through his dark and twisted path and shows her the true burden of his crown of golden leaves. Will she be able to follow through with his murder?
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The year is 1975. In the remote African savannah region of northern Nigeria, a lone American Peace Corps Volunteer mysteriously disappears while searching for a secret oasis. It was an innocent-enough camping trip that went horribly wrong. In a race against time, three of his friends—two Peace Corps volunteers and a Marine security guard from the U.S. Embassy—embark on a search and rescue mission like no other. Their manhunt takes an unexpected turn when they stumble onto an ancient and deadly side of Nigeria’s past. Survival soon becomes the primary goal for the search team as they close in on their objective, become isolated, and face unimaginable terror.
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The Perfect Sister follows a woman desperately trying to uncover the truth after her sister is killed and the suspected murderer may be innocent. What was the inspiration for the setup to this thrilling novel?
The novel takes place in my hometown of Rochester, NY and is based upon a true event involving a corrupt group of men who tried to gain a political monopoly over the city in 1904. I not only had easy access to the research, but the setting is in my back yard.
Katherine is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some ideas that guided her character development?
I wrote many of my books during a difficult marriage. They were my therapy. I could easily relate to her timid, browbeaten character while her father, in essence, represented my spouse’s behavior. Finding the strength within oneself is especially difficult when someone close to you is constantly critical.
I enjoyed the mystery at the heart of this novel. Did you plan it before writing or did it develop organically while writing?
With all my novels, I gather research around a true event, then begin building the plot as I go. It’s mostly the characters that move the story along as it depends upon how they would react in each scene or given situation and what they would do next.
What is the next novel that you are working on and when will it be available?
I have completed seven novels with the fifth one releasing in March 2020. The others available on Amazon and those forthcoming consist of medieval, western, suspense, thriller, and two murder mysteries.
After a beautiful socialite is murdered, her timid spinster sister must shed her fears and play a deadly game with corrupt politicians to prove the killer’s innocence. Rochester, New York 1904.
Katherine Mansford knows her father wishes she had died instead of her sister. She wishes that too. Lorraine was perfect…beautiful, sophisticated and engaged to a prominent lawyer. But she told Katherine a secret before her death, one that forces her to do the unthinkable…lie to her father and the sheriff.
On the day of the funeral, Katherine escapes to her secluded cabin down the beach only to discover Michael Johnston, the accused killer – her sister’s lover – hiding there. He insists he’s innocent and she begins to doubt his guilt; and her sister’s innocence.
As Katherine ventures on her own to seek the truth about Lorraine, she and Michael are dragged into a dangerous and vicious plot against her father and the city.
The Progeny follows the descendant of a prolific serial killer as she is the target of an ancient order. How did this idea begin and change as you were writing the novel?
A fan asked me to write a book about Elizabeth Bathory. I was familiar with Bathory (AKA the “Blood Countess”—the most prolific female serial killer in history, rumored to have bathed in the blood of virgins.) But I was fresh off several historical novels and eager to write something contemporary and faster-paced—a thriller. So I decided to write about her modern-day descendants, who have been systematically hunted for centuries.
Strangely enough, as I was researching the novel, I learned through my mother (a lifelong career genealogist) that I am actually distantly related to Bathory. So that was a twist I didn’t see coming!
I always enjoy the way you develop your characters. What is your writing process like to bring your characters to life?
Thank you! This story is populated by a group of charismatic young people with slightly supernatural gifts. So that was really fun to write. That said, it was really important to me to portray them as real, grounded—not super heroes—but bohemian outcasts living hard and fast on society’s fringe, just trying to make it to their 30th—or 25th, or 22nd—birthday. As far as bringing them to life, I used to spend a lot of time role-playing characters online. And I think those hours and days and years of doing that taught me a lot about stepping into another person’s skin and looking at life through their eyes.
The characters, and ancient orders, have a engaging backstory. What were some themes that drove their development?
So many of us are fascinated by ancient orders, secret societies, and clandestine histories hidden beneath the surface of the world as we know it. I am, too, and have spent far too much time gleefully studying this kind of thing. But the one overarching theme that really guides the groups in The Progeny is that of revenge for one group… and redemption for another.
What is the next book that you are writing and when will it be available?
I just had a duology come out in quick succession last year: The Line Between and its sequel, A Single Light—the story of a young woman leaving a doomsday cult just in time for the apocalypse as a pandemic sweeps across the nation that feels like it’s striking a little too close to home at the moment! Now that those two are out, I’m working on a couple new historical novels—a medieval thriller and a WWII novel.
Emily Jacobs is the descendant of a serial killer. Now, she’s become the hunted.
She’s on a quest that will take her to the secret underground of Europe and the inner circles of three ancient orders—one determined to kill her, one devoted to keeping her alive, and one she must ultimately save.
Filled with adrenaline, romance, and reversals, The Progeny is the present-day saga of a 400-year-old war between the uncanny descendants of “Blood Countess” Elizabeth Bathory, the most prolific female serial killer of all time, and a secret society dedicated to erasing every one of her descendants. It is a story about the search for self filled with centuries-old intrigues against the backdrop of atrocity and hope.
The Literary Titan Book Awards are awarded to books that have astounded and amazed us with unique writing styles, vivid worlds, complex characters, and original ideas. These books deserve extraordinary praise and we are proud to acknowledge the hard work, dedication, and imagination of these talented authors.
Gold Award Winners
Crimson at Cape May by Randy Overbeck
Cuttle: A Novel by Chelsea Britain
Silver Award Winners
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How Dare the Birds Sing by Marina Osipova is a story about Lyuba, a young Russian woman believing she is better off without love until she meets Gunter, a German pilot. Are they meant to be together? The Soviet Union is not an easy place to live in 1933. When Gunter disappears, Lyuba decides to take a huge risk for herself and her family. The events that transpire force the family’s lives to be thrown into the hands of the Nazis. How will Lyuba’s life change in this new world?
How Dare the Birds Sing is a well-written story starting off as two girls talking about love until it transforms into a compelling page-turner about making the right decisions. You never know what is going to happen or what will become of the characters asking yourself question after question. I was blown away by Marina Osipova’s accurate depiction of how Hitler’s rule affected people.
Lyuba goes through a transformational arc, starting off the story as a care-free young woman wanting to make her life into what she wants. She is a complex character and yet you can’t help but feel sorry for her. She just wants what every young woman wants. To grow up and live her dream. This was another story where I was telling the character what to do when she goes ahead and does the unthinkable.
Osipova’s story made me think. It makes me feel lucky that I was not living at this time, having to live under many laws. This story is all about making tough decisions. Were the decisions that Lyuba made the right decisions or were they selfish to those who didn’t have a say in the decision-making process.
I like the title of this story. In contrast to Maya Angelou’s poem titled Why Does the Caged Bird Sing? it’s sad because Lyuba no longer has her freedom as she watches the birds fly free. This story explores how cruel the world can be and how it affects your own perspective when looking at the world.
How Dare the Birds Sing is an emotional piece of historical fiction and I would recommend it. History is important and cannot be erased. It is important to learn how people’s lives were affected during WW2.
Pages: 317 | ASIN: B07N2BDF91
Jack “Jacko” O’Brien and Jamie Munro have a challenging mission ahead of them. The two have been tasked with rescuing a top MI6 operative who has been taken hostage by a criminal gang. The operative’s name is Colonel John Cook. O’Brien and Munro go back in the day. They worked together on many missions and even captured targets together. They have extraordinary skills, given their experiences during World War II. The task at hand may seem simple, but the people involved in the rescue mission of Colonel Cook have to prepare for any danger they have to face in the jungles of Malaya, where Cook has been kidnapped.
Greg Kater takes you across the Malayan jungle and terrain as we follow Jacko and his friends as they go after a dangerous criminal organization. Reading about the tactics they use, how they strategize and how they deal with adversaries was a great experience. Even with the skills Jamie Munro possesses due to his service in the military, the journey to combat the criminal organization is not easy. The gangs are prepared to face Munro and his team. It is not just the men who are resourceful in this mission, Sarah, a full Aborigine from Tennant Creek, and also a half-sister to Jack Obrien helps the team on their mission.
The team’s time in Kuala Lumpur is adventurous. Wit and physical strength are essential for them to achieve their goals. Skills of the Warramunga is a compelling thriller that takes you through different exotic landscapes and treacherous terrain. You vividly experience every action on the ground through the author’s eloquent words. I like how the author introduced the conflict at the beginning of the book. The description gives one a back story and the context of the struggle. The urge to read more increases as the action in the plot intensifies.
Skills of the Warramunga is an edge of your seat thriller. The author is exceptional with plot pacing and character creation. The characters in the book are firm and fun to follow. I enjoyed their conversations and how they bonded over disputes and other issues. I recommend this book to readers that enjoy military thrillers and action stories.
Pages: 314 | ASIN: B07PJLLJXL
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