I'm pleased to welcome Valerie Laws to my blog today, to talk about her new release, The Operator.
Now, this WILL hurt...’ In the second Erica Bruce and Will Bennett mystery, a sadistic orthopaedic surgeon is bizarrely killed. Soon it appears someone’s giving doctors a taste of their own medicine - murdering surgeons and mutilating the bodies to mimic the operations they perform. The media dub the killer ‘The Operator’. This action-packed thriller reunites Erica Bruce, small but fierce alternative health therapist and journalist, with tall, dark, athletic Detective Inspector Will Bennett, full-on sceptic. With its medical theme it is a shade darker than THE ROTTING SPOT, but with lots of witty Tyneside banter. The setting is the North East coast of England where the mighty, hostile North Sea tests Erica to the limit.
‘Erica Bruce rang the doorbell again. She was expected. Surely he’d not have gone out. She shifted her feet, jogging up and down on her toes as she looked at the expensively landscaped and tended front garden, the well-clipped constrained conifers and the ornamental pond. Too clean for frogs or newts to live in, she noted with disapproval, but with a few polished-looking koi sluggishly rotating in it.
Was Kingston never going to let her in? Perhaps some kind of alpha male power-play? Keep her standing out here, so she’d know her place. Perhaps he had forgotten their appointment. Though she’d emailed him a confirmation just last night, belting and bracing as usual. He must be in there.
A man, on an operating table. His eyes were open, looking at the ceiling with an opaque stare. The thick thatch of black hair on the back of his head was glued to the examination table by a puddle of dark thick blood. Right between his eyes on the midline between them but centred on his brow, where the third eye is said to be, a shiny metal spike protruded like a big bright new six-inch nail. It was blunt-topped with no head, strong but slender, slightly aslant from the vertical. Another such spike stuck out centrally above each strongly-marked dark eyebrow. In the shallow bowl of each temple, another nail, at about 45 degrees to the horizontal, and another just above each ear, more or less parallel to the surface of the table. Seven symmetrically placed, clean and gleaming, like a crown of spikes, though there were none at the back. Small dribbles of blood had leaked out of the wounds and dried to streaks on the pale skin, trickling obedient to gravity...’
This sounds an intriguing story, Valerie.
Kindle UK: THE OPERATOR
Kindle US: THE OPERATOR & all Amazon platforms
Valerie is an award-winning crime and comedy novelist and a prize-winning poet, playwright and sci-art installation specialist with twelve books published; four of them are also available on Kindle including her two crime novels THE ROTTING SPOT (‘a darkly intriguing debut’ Val McDermid) and new release THE OPERATOR (‘gripping from the very first scene’ Ann Cleeves). She lives on the North East Coast of England, and is world-infamous for ‘Quantum Sheep’, spray-painting poetry onto live sheep to celebrate quantum theory. Her recent work has included Writer in Residence posts with pathologists, neuroscientists, human specimens and dissections. She performs her poetry and fiction worldwide, live and in the media.
It sounds fascinating!
I asked Valerie to tell us a bit about herself:
How did you get started writing?
I’ve always written, from childhood. I started submitting work and getting published about twenty years ago (good grief! Is it that long?) and have been a full-time professional writer for about twelve years.
Can you tell us a fun fact about yourself?
I’m Writer in Residence at a Pathology Museum and a Brain Institute and have worked as a writer with dead bodies, dissections, human specimens, and deep frozen human brains!
What’s your top writing tip for new writers?
Write something you feel needs to be said - a story that needs telling, a poem which makes people see something in a new way.
Pinterest (for book location photos and more)
Thanks for dropping by, Valerie. :)