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bang-148261_960_720In my blog last Thursday, you’ll recall (you will recall, won’t you?) that I said if you want to write, you have to read. A lot.

So, I want to give you a great read in point, a terrific example.

The book is titled THE FREEDOM BROKER. It’s by K.J. Howe. A “Thea Paris Novel,” the first in a series of Thea Paris novels to come (she’s writing the second as we speak). Thea is the “protagonist” in this series, a hero’s hero.

THE FREEDOM BROKER is not due out in bricks and mortar or online book stores until February, 2017, but I’ve had the privilege of reading an “advance reader copy” (I want to write so I have to read, right?) and I can tell you that it’s worth the wait. THE FREEDOM BROKER is the consummate thriller novel, an explosive read.

But if you’re like me, you’d never remember to be on the watch for the book come next spring. Ah, but there is a solution. You can go to your favorite book store, Amazon for example, and pre-order it. That way, they’ll send it to you when it’s released. And they don’t even charge your card until they deliver it.

Let me tell you just a little about Thea Paris to see if she’s someone you might want to meet, at least if you’re not a kidnapper, or some other bad guy. Thea’s father is loaded, and well known, a big deal international oil baron. Twenty years ago, when Thea was only nine, her twelve-year-old brother was kidnapped. Thea witnessed the kidnapping, but, frozen in fear, she was unable to help her brother escape his kidnappers. She’s lived with that guilt ever since. And perhaps spent her life trying to compensate for all that guilt.

Fast forward to the present. Thea is now a hostage negotiator, working for a firm of international hostage negotiators. In the real world today, hostage negotiators are a cottage industry, but, as you might suspect, in this troubled world in which we live (not to be confused with a famous James Bond theme song by Paul McCartney, “Live and Let Die,” with the line “in which we live in”—not sure how much reading and writing of literature McCartney does, but he sure knows how write, play and sell music–and I digress!), an industry with serious growth potential. And, alas, history repeats itself: Thea’s billionaire father is . . . kidnapped!

I’m not going to tell you what Thea discovers in her quest to save her father as time runs out. You really should be hooked by now.

What I want to leave you with is not only is THE FREEDOM BROKER a book you want to read, and Thea Paris a character you want to know (unless you’re a kidnapper), and K.J. Howe an author whose growing catalogue of works someone you want to watch for, read, and follow, but Ms. Howe really proves my point: If you want to write, you have to read. To craft THE FREEDOM BROKER, Ms. Howe had to first do a lot of reading. Lee Child’s Jack Reacher series comes to mind. So do the many authors of the Jason Bourne series, beginning with Robert Ludlum. I even see a bit of Thomas Harris’ Hannibal Lecter in THE FREEDOM BROKER. Then you might also think of Tom Clancy’s HUNT FOR THE RED OCTOBER. Why? Because Ms. Howe gives Mr. Clancy a run for his money in making all of the technology Thea comes across very realistic and engaging, incredibly realistic, guns, bombs, helicopters, airplanes, diabetes, hostage negotiations 101, and more. Just imagine how much reading, and research, Ms. Howe had to do to acquire all of the knowledge she displays in THE FREEDOM BROKER.

One more point comes to mind. What do Child, Ludlum, Harris, and Clancy all have in common? They became number one bestsellers and their books became blockbuster movies. You’ll want to read THE FREEDOM BROKER before Ms. Howe lands her first movie deal so the movie won’t spoil a really fun read!

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