Friday, December 26, 2014

FREE Dec. 26-28th - THE SEACREST: a love story

From Aaron Lazar, a post-Christmas gift to you! Free Kindle eBook from Amazon, Friday through Sunday, 12/26 - 12/28, 2014. Pick up your copy today! 100 5 star reviews on Amazon, The Seacrest has also won some nice awards this year:

2014 Best Beach Book Festival WINNER, Romance category 2013 

ForeWord Book Awards, Romance, FINALIST 


Hope you enjoy this excerpt from chapter 4.

July 2nd, 1997

We played with the beach ball for about an hour, laughing and churning up sand three hundred yards up the beach, away from the sunbathers and family picnics. After the first few nervous minutes, the whole thing felt very natural, as if we were just kids and there were no boy-girl elements to be embarrassed about.
But there certainly were boy-girl elements.
I watched her tawny arms as they flailed and whapped the ball and marveled at her long, delicate legs when she ran back and forth along the quiet stretch of sand we’d chosen. Her eyes had a way of widening in mock horror when I tossed it too high and she missed it, quickly followed by a wide smile that dizzied me.
She had a nice figure, with slim legs, a narrow waist, and pretty shoulders. Her one-piece black suit covered areas I tried not to stare at, but couldn’t help wanting to. I wondered how it would feel to touch her. Probably softer than silk. Her hair cascaded along her back, bouncing dark against her summer brown skin.
We collapsed on the sand with the ball between us, breathing hard and laughing.
“You’re pretty good at this,” she said.
I leaned back on my arms and chuckled. “So are you. For a girl.”
She sat up and hit my arm. “What? For a girl?”
Afraid she’d storm off, I took her hand and pulled her close to me. “I’m just kidding! Really, you’re good, even for a guy.”
She smiled that lazy, sweet grin again and I felt my heart melt.
“Okay. That’s better.”
“I haven’t seen you at my school. Are you from around here?” I asked.
“I just came back for the summer.”
“Back from where?” I said. “Reform school?”
She hit me again and I knew I deserved it.
“Just for that, I’m not telling you. You’re horrible!” Her smile belied her words.
I grinned back at her. “So, what’s your name?”
“Okay.” I sat up, furrowed my brow, and placed fingertips against my temples, staring at her. “I’m getting something. It’s coming.”
She laughed and poked my chest. “Oh, really? What do you see?”
I gave it a shot. “Jennifer?”
She snorted. “No!”
I tried again. “Sarah?”
She giggled. “Heck, no.”
I tried to think of the most popular names of our generation, hoping it was one of them. “Allison?”
“Uhnt-uh.” She shook her head.
“Give me a hint.”
“Oh, come on!” I frowned. “How can I guess?”
“You have to.”
“Okay. Hannah? Jessica? Carly? Jenna? Lisa?”
“No, no, no, no, and no.”
“Hey. How ‘bout if I tell you my name?”
“What is it?”
I hesitated. “It’s a weird one.”
“Tell me.”
“Okay. It’s Finn.”
She tilted her head. “That’s not weird. I like it. Finn.” She seemed to taste the letters on her tongue, enjoying the feel of it. “It’s different. But nice.”
“Okay. Your turn.” I sat forward expectantly.
“Nope. I’m not telling. You have to keep guessing.”
I ran through all the names I could imagine, and didn’t hit on it. Frustrated now, I flopped back on the sand. “Okay. Then I’m gonna make up a name for you.”
She made a face. “Really?” Quickly, she leaned over me, her face blocking the sun.
In a sudden rush of feeling, I wanted to pull her to me, to smother her in kisses, to taste the salt on her skin.
“Okay, what’s it gonna be? What’s my new name?”
“Let me think.”
Her hair danced over my bare chest. I caught it and played with it. “You are sweet. I could call you Honey.”
“Boring,” she said.
“How about Candy?”
“Sexist,” she pouted.
“Even worse! I’m not a playboy bunny!”
“Okay, Well, you look delicious. How about Cupcake?”
She hissed. “That sounds like a chubby girl. Or a pony.”
“Okay, okay. Let me think. Maybe I need some inspiration. How about a kiss?”
At first I thought she’d reel back and hit me. But to my surprise, she lowered her lips to mine, stopping just an inch apart. “Okay. Just a little one, though.”
I reached my arms up to her neck and pulled her toward me. At the last minute, just as I felt the soft sweetness of her mouth brushing mine, she pulled back.
“Nope. Too soon.” She got up and laughed, twirling around with the ball. “Come on. What’s my nickname?”
I sat up, trying to control the heat surging beneath my bathing suit. “Okay. I’ve got it.”
“What? What is it?”
She pranced toward me. “I love that! Okay. From now on, I’m Sassy to you.”
Her father appeared out of nowhere, his face a study in disapproval. I think he hated me from the moment I’d asked her to toss the ball around. I also figured he’d probably seen us lying near each other, and got nervous.
He glared at me. “Time for lunch. Let’s go.”
There was no arguing with his stern tone. She tossed him the ball and wiggled her fingers at me. “See ya ‘round, Finn.”
I grinned like an idiot. God, she was cute. “Okay, Sassy. See ya.”
I watched her link arms with her father and sashay away from me. The sun winked on the brilliant sand, almost blinding me. As if hypnotized, I stared with slack jaw until I could barely make out her figure among the crowded, colorful throng of beach-lovers.
          Oh, Sassy. You’re the one for me. 


Books by multi-award winning author, Aaron Lazar: 


UNDER THE ICE (coming soon)



DEVIL’S CREEK (coming soon)

WRITE LIKE THE WIND, volumes 1, 2, 3

Aaron Paul Lazar writes to soothe his soul. An award-winning, bestselling Kindle author of three addictive mystery series, writing books, and a new love story, Aaron enjoys the Genesee Valley countryside in upstate New York, where his characters embrace life, play with their dogs and grandkids, grow sumptuous gardens, and chase bad guys. Visit his website at and watch for his upcoming releases, UNDER THE ICE(2015) and DEVIL’S CREEK(2015). Contact him at aaron dot lazar at yahoo dot com.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Have a Wonderful Holiday!

From all of us at MB4, may your holidays be filled with joy and peace, and may the New Year bring you and your loved ones health, love and happiness.



Friday, December 19, 2014

This is not your father's Sherlock Stephanie Osborn

Hello, folks!

Please help me welcome my good friend and outstanding author, Stephanie Osborn, to MB4 today. I adore her Sherlock Holmes books (there are four in the series) and highly recommend them to all mystery and science lovers. Give them a try!

Aaron Lazar
copyright 2014, Stephanie Osborn

This is not your father's Sherlock Holmes...

The Case of the Displaced Detective: The Arrival is a science fiction mystery in which brilliant hyperspatial physicist, Dr. Skye Chadwick, discovers there are alternate realities, often populated by those we consider only literary characters. Her pet research, Project: Tesseract, hidden deep under Schriever AFB, finds Continuum 114, where Sherlock Holmes was to have died along with Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. In a Knee-jerk reaction, Skye rescues Holmes, who inadvertently flies through the wormhole to our universe, while his enemy plunges to his death. Unable to go back without causing devastating continuum collapse, Holmes must stay in our world and adapt. Meanwhile, the Schriever AFB Dept of Security discovers a spy ring working to dig out the details of - and possibly sabotage - Project: Tesseract. Can Chadwick help Holmes come up to speed in modern investigative techniques in time to stop the spies? Will Holmes be able to thrive in our modern world? Is Chadwick now Holmes' new "Watson" - or more? And what happens next?


"...This is a really bad time for me to leave console at the moment, hon.”

Caitlin shot her a hard, annoyed look.

“You can’t be considering it,” she said flatly. “All hell is breaking loose here. I don’t care if the President needed you five minutes ago! You have to stay here!”

“Chill, Cait,” Skye tossed an aside to her friend, phone held absently to the side of her face with her shoulder as she tried to read the scribbled note Timelines handed her, around annotating her clipboard. “I’ve got more to do than I can shake a stick at now. I’m…what?” she said, staring at the note. “Software! Check the focus subroutine! Make sure it’s initiating at the correct point in the program! The last thing we need now is a software glitch causing a delay in timing. If that’s happening, no wonder the induction element’s hosed! Hardware, make sure the circuit’s clear! Holmes, I’m sorry, I can’t make it right now. I don’t have time to catch my breath down here.”

* * *

Holmes listened closely, not only to Skye’s direct comments, but also to her asides and commands, and to what he could hear of the remarks made to her. He covered the mouthpiece with his hand and informed Jones and Smith.

“It appears matters are not going well in the Chamber.” He punched the speaker button on the phone so the other men could hear. Then he returned his attention to the sounds coming from the phone. “Skye, what is happening?”

* * *

Skye watched as her teammates fought with the recalcitrant apparatus. One of the Hardware console members, Chad Swann by name and a longstanding friend of Skye’s, moved into the center of the room to check the circuitry of the monoliths. Skye grabbed her clipboard, flipping to the malfunction shutdown checklist, where she scanned the list, trying to determine the seriousness of their

Vaguely she heard Holmes’ query, but didn’t have time to devote to it. Still, she managed to find two spare brain cells to rub together, and replied abstractedly, “We’re having a malfunction in the induction element system. We can’t keep it focused…”

“Skye, we need you to make a call! Shut down, or put it in a holding pattern and troubleshoot?” Caitlin interrupted. Skye juggled phone and clipboard, trying to assess the checklist for priority red malfunction modes.

“Holmes, I’ve gotta go,” she said into the phone. “I need to figure out how serious this is—”

“DR. CHADWICK! We’ve got a GRAVITON SPIKE!” Sequencing shouted.

* * *

Smith and Jones watched as Holmes’ expression grew more and more grave as he listened to the sounds on the other end of the line. They heard Skye’s attempt to break the conversation, and Holmes was about to answer in the affirmative when they overheard the exclamation from Sequencing.

Holmes paled as they heard Skye shout, “Chad!! Get out of there! NO! EMERGENCY SHUTDO—”

The line went dead.

Instantly the entire building shuddered hard enough to knock books off shelves and send Skye’s chalk tumbling from its rack on the blackboard, smashing into dusty white shards on the tile. The three men grabbed for heavy furniture to avoid being flung to the floor.

* * *

When the quake subsided, the three men sat staring at each other, shaken. Holmes felt almost lightheaded, his grey eyes wide.

“What happened?” Jones demanded. “Did that earthquake have anything to do with Project: Tesser—”

“Emergency shutdown,” Holmes snapped out, leaping to his feet. “Graviton spike.” He didn’t fully understand the significance of the graviton spike, but from his reading of Skye’s quantum mechanics text, which perforce contained a significant amount of particle physics, he knew what a graviton was, and strongly suspected it was connected to the quake. “I am going down to the Chamber,” he declared in a tone brooking no argument. “The two of you may come, or stay.”

* * *

“Is your authorization in?” Jones turned to Smith.

“Your duty officer entered it into the system when I arrived this morning,” Smith observed.

“Good. We’re coming, Holmes,” Jones declared.

But Holmes was already out the door and down the hall, headed for the elevators at a dead run.

Jones and Smith sprinted behind.


The Case of the Displaced Detective: The Arrival is available in print and ebook (all formats), and the first four books of the series have been released in a collected ebook edition, The Case of the Displaced Detective Omnibus. Book 5, A Case of Spontaneous Combustion, is a 2014 new release. All of them are suitable for gift-giving!

-Stephanie Osborn

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Merry Christmas from South Lake

It's been a long time since I wrote any new Shannon and Dwayne stories. Get ready my murderers, there are NEW TALES COMING!!!

Merry Christmas from South Lake is just a snippet of a tale that I dreamed up this morning. I hope you will make plans to get the reissue of the first Shannon Wallace Mystery re-titled Deadly Array coming in 2015.

And Merry Christmas to you and yours this holiday season. I hope it is a good one


Merry Christmas from South Lake by Kim Smith

"What is that on your head?" I asked. A gust of wind from the front door disturbed papers on the front desk.

"It's a hat, Wall-ass," Dwayne answered, tapping the black monstrosity. It sat on his head like it would fall if he did anything close to a tilt of his neck. "I found it."

"Well, you better take it back to whatever homeless shelter you found it at."

He took it off and brushed at the brim. "It's made of silk, I think. Probably really expensive. I found it just sitting in the middle of the path around the lake at the park. It needed me to pick it up. It kinda called to me."

I shook my head. "And you had to answer? Ugh."

"I get that you don't like it. But I do. It's Christmas, and my head is cold. I need this hat." And he plopped it back onto his head and turned into his office.

I followed him, not really wanting to continue this tirade but curious over his choice of park in the early morning. "What were you doing at South Lake Park so early?"

He shrugged. "Getting some fitness in. You'd do well to do that too, Ms. I-eat-at-buffets."

I sniffed. "I am not getting fat, Dee. I have to jog after you. Let me see that hat."

He handed it to me, and I looked at it closely. It was a stovepipe style, like Abe Lincoln wore. It had the remains of a red feather in the hatband. "Not bad." I handed it back to him. "But don't wear it indoors. It's bad manners."

He snatched it from me and growled. I turned and walked out. My buddy, Dwayne Brown, the hat aficionado. Who woulda thunk it?

We worked at Video Angels, a video production company that had been Dwayne's brainchild. In the last few months we'd kept ourselves alive by shooting plays, but with summer coming, I longed to do a wedding. I booted up my laptop and scoured sites where other people had their webpages filled with wedding images.

Dwayne interrupted my drooling. He stood in my doorway, his silly hat in hand. "Hey, I'm going downtown to get something to eat. You wanna come with?"

My stomach growled. The oatmeal I'd consumed was long gone. "Do I have to sit with you wearing that hat?"

He stuck it on his head and grinned.

I sighed. "Fine. But if anyone calls you Frosty the Snowman, I'm going to laugh."

I pulled on my hooded coat. He wrapped a Christmas red scarf around his neck. If he'd stuck a pipe in his mouth, he really would look like a black version of the jolly snowman.

He held the door open for me as we left. "Ho, ho, ho. Merry Christmas."

I grinned. "That's what I love about you Dee, you say the sweetest things."

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Divide By Zero, by Sheila Deeth

Hello, MB4 fans and friends!

Please help me welcome my friend and author Sheila Deeth to Murderby4 today. I read her book, Divide by Zero, and truly enjoyed the tapestry of characters and scenes she so expertly wove together. Give it a try!

Aaron Lazar

copyright 2014, Sheila Deeth
In a recent post on this site, Aaron Paul Lazar asked about “writing the tough stuff, or killing the one you love.” I thought straight away of a scene where someone dies in my newly re-released novel, DIVIDE BY ZERO. But I can’t give you the scene. I can’t even tell you who dies because... well, then I might have to kill you, or something.
There are lots of characters threading through the tapestry of DIVIDE BY ZERO. Even if you know someone’s going to die, I’d rather you didn’t warn them when you first see them smile. So meet Troy, the garage mechanic; he’s falling in love with a rich man’s daughter—a match made on the ice cream aisle of the local supermarket perhaps; and both their families will be drawn into revealing disparate opinions. Of course, Lydia’s little sister Sylvia doesn’t have much of an opinion; she just wishes her big sister wouldn’t head off to university, because who will she talk to when she’s gone? Big brother Jason just wants a job.
Then there’s young Steve being drawn into love and bridge on the quiet street where Troy and Lydia will come to live. He meets a cat and... well, the cat’s really important. It’s fluffy and white, has a rhinestone collar with a garnet glowing in the center like a mystical eye; and it keeps watch as if it knows more about the world than anyone else. The cat is there while the world goes by, and there to help when everything falls apart.
Rumor has it a predator (human, not feline) lurks under the trees of Paradise Park. But, other than that, Paradise seems a pleasant little suburb of a pleasant little town, until someone dies. The question, I suppose, is did I kill someone I loved. And the answer? I sort of loved the whole tapestry of characters. After all, there’s that other question that people always ask authors—“How much of yourself is hidden in the people you write?” There are bits of me scattered all through DIVIDE BY ZERO (ah, what a fractured personality I must be), so killing someone off is like, well... definitely worse than cutting toenails.
Of course, the other phrase authors often hear is the advice to “Kill off your darlings.” But they don’t mean characters when they say this; they mean beloved scenes that don’t advance the plot; intricate details that hang like pearls from a piglet; or glorious triumphs set at inglorious tangents to everything else. My editor helped me kill those darlings very kindly and effectively, but the blame for killing characters is all my own, unless I choose to blame that one who set this whole sorry sequence of events in motion. But instead I feel sorry for him—the most evil character I’ve ever written, and here I am trying to redeem him! He had his hurts—don’t we all?—and in the end forgiveness might be a gift my characters can only receive, not theirs to give.  You might have to read the book to see what you think.
So, perhaps I wrote my villain’s crime in hopes of placing my own unseen transgressions on the same collection plate. We all have our hurts, like him, and all of us need forgiveness, one way or another, sometime or another (or all the time). If pain should become our “singular point,” dividing us by zero, perhaps forgiveness is the number (numerator) that we divide, a gift that saves us from being torn apart. And perhaps that’s the message I’m hiding in my book, as I kill the ones I love, even when they stay living, demanding sequels, in my head.


Author: Sheila Deeth
Divide by Zero is available from the publisher at:!product/prd15/2955791331/divide-by-zero