Hi Everyone, Cheryl here. Below is a guest post from my friend and fellow author, Joel D Canfield. I’m honored to be part of his blog tour for his latest novel’s release. Enjoy!
A Still, Small Voice (Is Better Than a Big Loud One)
Being the shy, sensitive type, I try to avoid shocks. Don’t like loud bangs. Bright lights are painful. Quick movements trigger my duck-and-dodge reflex. Gore and other explicit stuff in my entertainment turns me off.
As a result, the pool of introspective noir I can enjoy is limited. Elvis Cole and Harry Bosch are near the edge of my realm. Kinsey Millhone hasn’t scared me yet. Sam Spade and Philip Marlowe are fine. Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin make the grade.
They say you should write the book you want to read.
I’ve done that at least five times now, written introspective noir that’s safe for the most delicate constitutions. My latest, A Still, Small Voice is my 15th book, but only my 5th mystery. It’s the second featuring Phil Brennan, who, yes, is named after Mr. Marlowe, the hero in all the books written by the greatest mystery writer ever, Raymond Chandler.
Phil Brennan is a loner. Was, I guess. He’s getting to know the folks in his neighborhood. Some of them are great.
Some are real stinkers.
Our man Brennan, of course, judges everything by his childhood and his failures, which means sometimes he misreads people and situations.
Just like the rest of us.
Truth be told, my books barely qualify as mysteries. There’s always something unknown and someone trying to uncover it, but that’s never the core of the story. These stories are about morally rigid people jammed into morally ambiguous situations, forced to make the best bad choice.
Readers tell me the books help them confront their own personal moral dilemmas. That’s good, because that’s why I write them: to remind myself what I believe. [Cheryl butting in… Quick fact. Joel’s first Phil Brennan book, I didn’t have a lot of time to read it at first when it came out. But once I got about half way into the story, I emailed Joel with some early feedback: “HOLYCRAPTHISISLIKECRACK!” and then devoured the rest of the book in short order.]
No, you won’t find any overt preaching about right and wrong. You’re a grown up. You already know.
What you will find is the vicarious experience of a good guy struggling through bad times and coming out okay in the end, even if he is a little ragged and rumpled by the process.
At the moment, anyone who signs up for my newsletter gets A Still, Small Voice free. Download it instantly. [!!!!!!!]
You’ll also get my 4 previous novels. All 5 of them. Free. You probably want to do that before I freak out and change my mind. [I’ve read all 5. You want to get them!]
Who are your favorite mystery writers? I love finding new authors to stalk. It’s how I discovered that there’s actually a mystery sub-sub-sub-genre for Wisconsin coffee shop cozies. And they’re good. (Though I live in southern Arizona now, Wisconsin is my home state, and no, we didn’t leave because of the weather. I miss the snow and I hate the heat. [See why I like Joel so much? I left the deep south for Maine to gain the snow and skedaddle out of the heat. Kindred spirits we are!] Watch for how that affects my next book.)
What was the question again? Oh, yes. Your favorite mystery author everyone should know about. Fire away.