January 17, 2022
In USA Today best-selling author Kaira Rouda's latest domestic suspense novel, SOMEBODY'S HOME, the sale of house isn't a fresh start, but the beginning of a nightmare.
Julie Jones has left her suffocating marriage. Although it’s on the wrong side of the tracks in Oceanside, California, she's hoping that her new house is the first step toward a new life with her teenage daughter, Jess.
However, the previous owners have left something—or rather someone—behind…
Tom Dean has a seething hatred for the father who considers him a lost cause. He’s now extended his malice to the woman who has purchased the only home he’s ever known. She thinks he’ll be gone in three days, but Tom has the perfect plan for this single mother and her daughter.
Before the weekend is over, somebody is going to get exactly what they deserve.
Kaira and I discuss where she gets her novel premises, her process for bringing her everyday characters to life, how young adults become disenfranchised from the rest of the world and cajoled into domestic terrorism, and why it’s important to lift the curtain on the dark side of our everyday lives.
November 2, 2021
In Yasmin Angoe contemporary debut thriller, HER NAME IS KNIGHT, an elite assassin heroine on a mission to topple a human trafficking ring and avenge her family.
Stolen from her Ghanaian village as a child, Nena Knight has plenty of motives to kill. Now an elite assassin for a powerful business syndicate called the Tribe, she gets plenty of chances.
But while on assignment in Miami, Nena ends up saving a life, not taking one. She emerges from the experience a changed woman, finally hopeful for a life beyond rage and revenge. Tasked with killing a man she’s come to respect, Nena struggles to reconcile her loyalty to the Tribe with her new purpose.
Meanwhile, she learns a new Tribe council member is the same man who razed her village, murdered her family, and sold her into captivity. Nena can’t resist the temptation of vengeance—and she doesn’t want to. Before she can reclaim her life, she must leverage everything she was and everything she is to take him down and end the cycle of bloodshed for good.
Yasmin and I discuss how and when the premise came to her; how family is embedded deeply in the story—both in its plot and as inspiration for the concept—and why women as assassin protagonists are finally enjoying acceptance: from publishing editors and readers.
October 26, 2021
In GATED PREY, prolific thriller writer and television producer Lee Goldberg’s third novel in the Eve Ronin crime fiction novel series, her supposedly simple 24-7 sting operation takes a violent and unexpected turn, leaving three intruders dead, and a body count that nearly includes Los Angeles Sheriff's Detective Eve and her soon-to-be retired partner ,Duncan. Eve’s bosses are eager to declare the case closed, but there are too many unanswered questions for her to let go. Was the trap actually for Eve as bloody payback for her very public takedown of a clique of corrupt deputies? Or is there an even deadlier secret lurking behind those opulent gates?
Eve’s refusal to back down and her relentless quest for the truth make her both the hunter…and the prey.
Lee and I discuss his research for the book; the toll of Eve’s physical and emotional grief on her psyche, and her strength; why it’s easy to make Duncan so lovable; and—LISTEN UP!—some very interesting projects he has on the horizon.
June 29, 2021
In the novel, CHOOSE ME, prolific authors Tess Gerritsen and Gary Braver have collaborated on a thriller that introduces Frankie Loomis, a tough-as-nails police detective whose investigation of a college student’s fatal plunge from a balcony is so finely layered with possible suspects that it will keep you guessing until the end if it was suicide or a murder.
Tess and Gary discuss why they enjoyed the collaboration; why it was great to see how each approached dialogue—both the men’s and women’s—from each other’s points of view; and why they chose to make Frankie a woman of a certain age.
We also discuss two very important issues specific to authors: when using a pen name works well; and why the laws that protect Intellectual Property need to be strengthened, especially in circumstances when novels are adapted to movies or television.
February 12, 2021
In Black Coral, master magician and prolific novelist Andrew Mayne’s second thriller of his Sloan McPherson series—Mayne’s take-no-prisoners detective, a diver with her police force’s newly formed Underwater Investigation Unit—stumbles across a submerged car in an alligator-infested canal.
It turns out that the bodies inside belong four to missing persons—teenagers presumed runaways. This decades-long cold case is just one piece in a string of similar vanishings—and if Sloan’s team is correct, the work of a serial killer hiding in plain sight.
But Sloan will do anything to catch him—even if it means being his perfect victim.
Andrew and I discuss how Sloan’s unorthodox past makes her an unlikely albeit a successful detective; and how he channels his Florida childhood to create stories about the secrets that lie beneath the water’s edge. We also talk about his own ties to law enforcement; and how his profession as a master illusionist has helped form his approach for writing tight, taut suspenseful novels.
February 1, 2021
In prolific screenwriter Daniel Pyne’s latest thriller, WATER MEMORY—Black Ops specialist Aubrey Sentro may be one concussion away from death. But when pirates seize the cargo ship she’s on, she must decide whether to risk her life to save her fellow passengers.
As she plays their deadly game of cat and mouse, she pushes herself to survive by focusing on thoughts of her children. She’s never told them what she really does for a living, and now she might not get the chance.
While her memories make her vulnerable, motherhood makes her dangerous.
Daniel and I also discuss his process for writing the novel his first series, and the similarities and differences between writing for film and television as opposed to novels.
January 11, 2021
There are tiger moms. And then there is Rachel Marin, Jason Pinter’s protagonist in the thriller series that bears her name. Pinter has given Rachel a very unique skill set: she has an uncanny ability to see clues that crime scene investigators may miss.
She is also a lethal killer.
In A STRANGER AT THE DOOR—the second book of series—when danger lands on Rachel’s doorstep with the threat of harming her young family, she has a vested interest in solving the heinous murder of a local high school teacher.
Jason and I discussed the twists and turns of this suspense-filled thriller. We also talk small towns and the evil that may lurk behind those perfect white picket fences.
January 3, 2021
In BONE CANYON—prolific author and television producer-writer Lee Goldberg’s second book in his Eve Ronin series—charred bones found in the aftermath of a devastating Santa Monica Mountains fire embroils his protagonist in a conspiracy that puts her hard-fought position on the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department in jeopardy—not to mention her life.
Lee and I discuss how he approaches the research for his books, why he believes that making life for Eve, a rookie cop, complicated and messy, both in her personal and her professional relationships makes her a more satisfying heroine, and the most important thing he feels every author should do to be successful in their careers.
September 1, 2020
Josie and her guest, Robert Dugoni, discuss his latest thriller, The Last Agent—the second book in his Charles Jenkins series.
The novel’s non-stop fast-paced plot revolves around the ultimate heist: the exfiltration of the undercover Russian Operative who once saved Jenkins’s life. Every step of the way—from Moscow to Scandinavia to the open ocean—Jenkins is hunted by a brutal Russian agent on a killer quest of his own.
You can order Robert Dugoni’s novel, The Last Agent, right now, through Amazon.
You can read an article including this interview in THE BIG THRILL: http://bit.ly/BigThrillLastAgent
January 28, 2020
In New York Times bestselling author Robert Dugoni’s latest thriller, A COLD TRAIL, Seattle homicide detective Tracy Crosswhite returns home to Cedar Grove, where a brutal murder and her haunted past come to a crossroads.
There her husband, lawyer Dan O’Leary, is drawn into representing a local merchant whose business is jeopardized by the town’s revitalization. At the same time, Tracy is urged by the local Police Department to put her own skills to work on a new case: the brutal murder of the new police chief’s wife who was also local reporter investigating a cold-case slaying of a young woman.
As Tracy’s and Dan’s cases crisscross, Tracy may have put everyone she loves at risk.
Josie and Robert talk about the genesis for the book's plot, a family recipe for great spaghetti sauce (hint: a family recipe) and the REAL Tracy Crosswhite.
August 13, 2018
If you’re a novelist, the best way to make lemonade from a lemon of a non-fiction book deal gone awry is to repurpose it into a thriller that garners numerous enthusiastic reviews and a slot several best-sellers’ lists.
With her latest stand-alone novel, TRUST ME, Five-time Agatha award-winner Hank Phillippi Ryan has done exactly that. I talked to her about this latest thriller as well as how she varies her process when writing a stand-alone novel as opposed to her Jane Ryland series.
Click here to read the accompanying feature article with Hank in TheBigThrill.org