Three Strikes + Giveaway
by Ross Klavan, Tim O'Mara, and Charles Salzberg
on Tour September 1 - October 31, 2018
I Take Care of Myself in Dreamlandby Ross Klavan
Bartok is horribly scarred. Wounded in the Army, he roams through 1970’s New York, a city of perpetual night, punctuated by crime and populated by streetwalkers, hooker bars, strip clubs, easy drugs and a feeling of doom. There’s one thing on his mind: an experience he had when his Army truck exploded, an experience he calls Red River. More than bliss, more than spiritual. But nothing goes right. Bartok loses his girl, his money, any possibility of support and decides that he’s finished, he’s going to end it but before he does, he’s going out on the town for one last attempt to recapture the incredible experience of Red River. And when he does, he runs into others who see him as an easy mark for dirtier plans…plans that involve murder before suicide.
Bartok’s story is told by a driver for the mob, a guy who’s heard it all and usually keeps his mouth shut because when he begins a trip, it’s almost always one-way.
Jammedby Tim O’Mara
Aggie’s back. After barely escaping with his life in “Smoked,” Aggie disproves the old adage of “Once burned…” This time around he’s heading from the Midwest to New York City with a sweet shipment of stolen maple syrup. He also has picked up an unwanted-and potentially dangerous-passenger; the fifteen-year-old daughter of his latest boss has hopped on for a free ride to the Big Apple and her on-line boyfriend. When they arrive in NYC, Aggie’s worst fears are realized when the “boyfriend” turns out to be a group of human traffickers. Aggie knew that running one of the world’s most valuable liquids across state lines was skirting the line between safety and danger, but he never knew it could get this sticky.
The Maybrick Affairby Charles Salzberg
It’s a couple weeks before the attack on Pearl Harbor and a young reporter, Jake Harper, who works for a small Connecticut newspaper, is assigned a routine human interest story. A reclusive, elderly woman, has quietly passed away in her small cottage upstate. Anxious for bigger stories, Jake begins his assignment by trying to find out who this woman was and what kind of life she led. As Jake investigates the old woman’s death he finds that years earlier she was tried and convicted of murdering her husband in a well-publicized, lurid trial in London, England. And, after digging further, he, unearths evidence that she might have had a connection to an even more famous British serial killer and that the ramifications of this story might affect America’s entry into the War.
I was interested to pick up this anthology and read it due to the fact that the stories sounded gritty and the cover alluded to it as well. Well I am happy to report that the "grittiness" was there. However, it was the characters and the stories that missed the mark for me. Well the first two stories but the last one, The Maybrick Affair by Charles Salzberg did capture my interest and kept me invested in the story. Instantly, I did find a connection with Jake. He was someone that I could relate to. Additionally, it helped that I liked the plot for the story. I am a fan of historical reads.
Whereas; the other two stories just didn't really grab my attention. The first one was a bit out there. Which , being different is and can be good when executed right. In this case, I could not find that connection to the main character and thus the rest just slipped past me and became unmemorable.
In regards, to the second story, it was a little better but there was more times than not where I still found myself wandering away from the story. Sometimes this is the case with anthologies where not all of the stories will be winners but when you do find some that is great. I not only found a good story but I also discovered a new author in Mr. Salzberg that I want to check out more of his work.
Book Details:Genre: Crime
Published by: Down & Out Books
Publication Date: September 10th 2018
Number of Pages: 350
Series: 3 Authors, 3 Novellas
Purchase Links: Down & Out Books | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Read an excerpt from I Take Care of Myself in Dreamland
Read an excerpt from Jammed
Read an excerpt from The Maybrick Affair***
Excerpt from Three Strikes by Ross Klavan, Tim O'Mara and Charles Salzberg. Copyright © 2018 by Ross Klavan, Tim O'Mara, and Charles Salzberg. Reproduced with permission from Down & Out Books. All rights reserved.
Ross KlavanRoss Klavan’s work spans film, television, radio, print, live performance and visual art. A novella, “Thump Gun Hitched,” was published in 2016 by Down and Out Books as part of “Triple Shot” along with Charles Salzberg and Tim O’Mara. His darkly comic novel Schmuck was published by Greenpoint Press in 2014. Klavan’s original screenplay for the film Tigerland was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award and the film was released by New Regency starring Colin Farrell. He recently finished an adaption of John Bowers’ The Colony and has written scripts for Miramax, Intermedia, Walden Media, Paramount, A&E and TNT-TV among others. The “conversation about writing” he moderated with Kurt Vonnegut and Lee Stringer was televised and published as Like Shaking Hands with God, and his short stories have appeared in magazines and been produced by the BBC. An earlier novel, Trax, was published under a pseudonym. His play How I Met My (Black) Wife (Again), co-written with Ray Iannicelli, has been produced in New York City, and he has performed his work in numerous theaters and clubs. He has acted and done voice work in TV and radio commercials and has lent his voice to feature films including: Casino, You Can Count on Me, Revolutionary Road, Awake and the Amazon web series Alpha House, written by Gary Trudeau. He has worked as a newspaper and radio journalist in New York City and London. He lives in New York City with his wife, the painter, Mary Jones.
Catch Up With Ross Klavan On: Goodreads, Twitter, & Facebook!
Tim O'MaraTIM O’MARA is best known for his Raymond Donne mysteries about an ex-cop who now teaches in the same Williamsburg, Brooklyn, neighborhood he once policed: Sacrifice Fly (2012), Crooked Numbers (2013), Dead Red (2015), Nasty Cutter (2017), published by Minotaur Books (#1–#3) and Severn House (#4). He recently signed a deal for a fifth Raymond book, The Hook, which should be published in late 2019 by Severn House. His novellas Smoked and Jammed appear in 2016 and 2018 crime trilogies from Down & Out Books. O’Mara taught special education for 30 years in the public middle schools of New York City, where he still lives and teaches adult writers. In addition to writing The Hook and the stand-alone high-school-based crime drama So Close to Me, O’Mara is currently curating a short crime story anthology to benefit the non-profit American Rivers.
Catch Up With Our Author On: timomara.net, Goodreads, Twitter, & Facebook!
Charles SalzbergCharles Salzberg is a former magazine journalist and nonfiction book writer. He is the author of the Shamus Award nominated Swann's Last Song, and the sequels, Swann Dives In, Swann's Lake of Despair and Swann's Way Out. His novel, Devil in the Hole, was named one of the best crime novels of 2013 by Suspense magazine. His latest novel is Second Story Man. He is co-author of Triple Shot, with Ross Klavan and Tim O'Mara (three crime novellas). He teaches writing in New York City and is on the board of the New York chapter of Mystery Writers of America.
Catch Up With Charles Salzberg On: charlessalzberg.com, Goodreads, Twitter, & Facebook!