Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Decorated cop feared missing.

   Yesterday the New York City Police Department confirmed that one of their own is missing. Police officials believe NYPD hostage negotiator Matthew London disappeared from Manhattan Island sometime near the end of January. Investigators have been unable to piece together any clues as to where London went or if he's even alive. Foul play is not suspected at this time. Anyone who has seen Matthew London should call the police hotline at...

One disgraced hostage negotiator yearning for redemption.
One female FBI agent running from a shattered past.
One kidnapped child held hostage in a swamp.
One Category 5 hurricane.
Two outlaw brothers.
A three-million
dollar ransom.
All come together on one fateful night.
This is the story of Matthew London.
This is the story of...
The Grace Painter

    My review:
     I have a lot of  e-books on my Kindle Touch that were free to me, and some are worth just what I paid for them: nothing. This e-book is a free one I got recently, and I was pleasantly surprised when I started reading it. It was not just as good as it sounded, it was far better.

   This is a suspense novel, which is at the top of my favorite genre' of books, which is the main reason I was drawn to read it. The Grace Painter is the author's first book, much to my disappointment, as I immediately searched for other books by him when I finished it. And for a debut novel, this book is a great read. It is well-written, has a great plot and characters, and it is definitely Christian without being preachy, which seems to bother some people.

   I started reading the book this morning while waiting for the time for work to start and kept reading portions on breaks and while waiting for my trainer at work to begin traning sessions. I had a hard time putting it down, and immediately started back up after eating supper at home. The book came to a great satisfying conclusion, and I enjoyed it so much that I decided to do something I don't do much, maybe only once before: post a review on both my blog and Amazon. This was a great read, and I am looking forward to reading more from this author. If this book is any indication, the Christian suspense market has a new author that is going to give the other seasoned authors some competition.

About the author:

   Mark Lives in Liberty, Missouri with his wife Paula and son Luke, and a large yellow dog named JoJo. Besides reading and writing suspense and action-adventure novels, Mark enjoys camping and hiking. He's also a bit of a MMA junkie.
The Grace Painter is Mark's debut novel.

Learn more about the author at

Sample chapter here.

Q&A from the author's website:

Q: How would you describe your writing style?
Heavy on action and suspense; light on dialogue. I also try to limit backstory. I feel too much of it slows down the pace. But sometimes it can't be avoided. Basically, I'm trying to make the reading experience a five hour, high intensity workout for the mind.

Q: What does your writing process look like? Do you work off an outline? How do you come up with your plots?
A: I think the plots have been in my head all along. But for whatever reason, they're just now bubbling to the surface. I usually have the beginning and the ending in my head before I sit down and start writing the story. Then I just fill in the rest.
Q: Do you have a special spot where you like to write?A: Yes. The basement in my house. I have some weightlifting equipment down there. I write between sets. Somedays when the writing is going well the workout becomes a sitdown. I used to listen to hard rock while writing. I thought maybe the music boosted my adrenaline and made my action scenes more hardcore. But I eventually had to turn down the music. It's difficult to type while headbanging. Typos were popping up everywhere. And the dog was giving me some weird looks.

Q: Who is your intended reading audience?A: All literate males and females ages 16 to 99, and anyone who enjoys novels containing copious amounts of action and suspense.

Q: What about all the centenarians out there? Why not include them in your reading audience?
A: I figure they're probably blind by that age. But if they can still see, why not?
Q: Why are you only writing eBooks?
A: In this economy I wouldn't feel right about asking someone to plunk down 15 to 20 bucks for a print book. On the other hand, an eBook is an exceptional bargain. There are thousands of titles available for less than four bucks. You can even get some for free.

Q: What are you working on now?
A: I'm a little suspicious about that. I don't want to jinx myself or the story. I'll just say my next book involves ex-Navy SEALS, flamethrowers, slot canyons, and the supernatural. I'm nearing the halfway point with it. I hope to publish it by the end of 2013.

Q: Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
A: Yeah, I do. Find a different hobby. Try golf. You'll be equally frustrated, but at least you'll be sporting a nice tan for your efforts.

Q: Final question. What is the takeaway message of
The Grace Painter ?
A: We all have made mistakes we regret, mistakes we can never seem to forgive ourselves for. And many of us yearn for a shot at redemption to make things right. The protagonist in my book struggles with this very issue for nearly a decade. He eventually gets his shot at redemption and takes advantage of it. But most of us may never get a chance to redeem ourselves. We would be better off to just forgive ourselves and move on. Leave the past in the past. Life is too short to waste looking backward. After all, only God can truly redeem us.

I downloaded this book free from Amazon and have posted this review of my own volition.