Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Book Contests

The House at Sea's End by Elly Griffiths
Fiction / 384 pages / Hardcover
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt /
January, 2012

Dear Reader,

The day my husband gave up work turned out to be a good one for our family. Five years ago Andy gave up a city job to become an archaeologist. Money was tight so, instead of exotic holidays, we took the children to Norfolk, England, where I had holidayed as a child. And it was there that Andy's new career gave me the idea for my first crime novel.

We were walking a marsh on the North Norfolk coast when Andy mentioned that prehistoric man had seen marshland as sacred. Because it's neither land nor sea, but something in-between, they had seen it as a kind of bridge to the afterlife. The entire plot for The Crossing Places came to me in that instant.

His work on a Roman villa gave me the idea for The Janus Stone and his excavation of a beach threatened by erosion gave me the location for my new book, The House at Sea's End.

The books mix archaeology and crime and feature forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway. I do hope you enjoy them!

Very best wishes,



About The House at Sea's End:

Forensic archeologist Dr. Ruth Galloway is back, called in to investigate bones that surface on a remote Norfolk beach and a gruesome World War II war crime.

Just back from maternity leave, Ruth is finding it hard to juggle motherhood and work. The presence of Detective Inspector Harry Nelson -- the married father of her daughter, Kate -- does not help. The bones turn out to be about seventy years old, which leads Nelson and Ruth to the war years, a desperate time on this stretch of coastland. Home Guard veteran Archie Whitcliffe reveals the existence of a secret that the old soldiers have vowed to protect with their lives. But then Archie is killed and a German journalist arrives, asking questions about Operation Lucifer, a plan to stop a German invasion, and a possible British war crime. What was Operation Lucifer? And who is prepared to kill to keep its secret?

Reviews for The House at Sea's End:

"Galloway is an everywoman, smart, successful and a little bit unsure of herself. Readers will look forward to learning more about her."
-USA Today

"Expect to be swept away by Griffith's third compelling forensic anthropology entry (after The Crossing Places and The Janus Stone). The author is a past Mary Higgins Clark Award winner, and her gothic, romantic-suspense workmanship is superb."
-Library Journal (starred review)

For more information about Elly Griffiths, visit her website.

Our Man in the Dark by Rashad Harrison Fiction / 320 pages / Hardcover Atria/Simon & Schuster/
November, 2011

Dear Reader,

Our Man in the Dark began as a search for answers: Why would an accountant working for Martin Luther King's Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) embezzle $10,000 from the organization, and become an informant for the FBI? Ultimately, this search challenged my preconceptions about race and loyalty. What echoed in the spaces left by my abandoned presumptions was the voice of John Estem.

There I discovered a marginalized individual desperate to define himself within the larger American narrative, a lonely man longing to matter.

Desperation. Longing. Disillusionment. These are essential ingredients of Noir storytelling. This also mirrors the experience of not only John Estem, but of so many African-Americans at that time. By participating in Hoover's sinister campaign against Martin Luther King, Estem leads himself down a very dark path. His story is one of greed, lust and power; it's America's story -- told from the shadows.

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy.

Best regards,

Rashad Harrison


About Our Man in the Dark:

A stunning debut historical noir novel about a worker in the civil rights movement who became an informant for the FBI during the months leading up to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Feeling unappreciated and overlooked, John Estem, a bookkeeper for Martin Luther King's Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), steals ten thousand dollars from the organization.

To the bookkeeper's dismay, the FBI has been keeping close tabs on Dr. King and his fellow activists -- including Estem -- for years. FBI agents tell Estem that it is his duty, as an American and as a civil rights supporter, to protect the SCLC from communist infiltration.

Playing informant empowers Estem, but he soon learns that his job is not simply to relay information on the organization. The FBI discovers evidence of King's sexual infidelities, and sets out to undermine King's credibility as a moral leader.

This timely novel comes in light of recent revelations that government informants had infiltrated numerous black movement organizations. With historical facts at the core of Our Man in the Dark, Harrison uses real life as a great inspiration for his drama-filled art.

Reviews for Our Man in the Dark:

"...taking artistic license with the memory of the civil rights icon is risky business. But Rashad Harrison deftly negotiates this challenge in his first novel, Our Man in the Dark. ...what sets the novel apart is Harrison's clear-eyed treatment of Martin Luther King Jr. Rather than an exercise in hero-making, Harrison's MLK is thoroughly human."
-Washington Post

"Our Man in the Dark is an amazing story, amazingly told. Intrigue and sadness, race and Government, Dr. King and the FBI, foibles and loyalties -- this is an ambitious novel that wraps its powerful arms around what it means to be an American. Bold, rhapsodic, and daring, Rashad Harrison has written a morally-engaged masterpiece."
-Author Darin Strauss

For more information about Rashad Harrison, visit his website or his Facebook or Twitter page.

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