I’m honored to have bestselling author, Maris Soule, here today! In ECHOES of TERROR, winner of the Florida Writers’ Associations’ Royal Palm Literary Award in the Mystery/Thriller category, Officer Katherine Ward is assigned the case of a kidnapped teenager, never expecting it to parallel her own kidnapping experience seventeen years before. The usual crimes faced by the Skagway, Alaska police department’s small force are DUIs and missing bikes. They’re not prepared for the kidnapping of a billionaire’s daughter.
Misty Morgan thought running off with a college boy would get her father’s attention. Now she and another teenager are praying for their lives, especially when the kidnapper puts a time limit on their rescue.
Stuck in China, Misty’s father sends long time friend and former fellow-Marine, Vince Nanini, to Alaska to stop Misty. Problem is Vince arrives too late to stop the kidnapping, and the police aren’t eager to let him help. But when Katherine realizes the same man who kidnapped and raped her years ago is the one holding Misty and the other teenager, Vince convinces her they must work together if they’re going to figure out where the kidnapper has taken two teenagers.
Echoes of Terror by Maris Soule (a FiveStar/Cengage mystery)
“He’s here,” Alice said, her voice barely above a whisper. “And wait ’til you see him.” She fanned herself, and grinned. “He wants to talk to the officer in charge. At the moment, that’s you.”
Katherine supposed with Gordon out of the building that was true. She also assumed this smoking hot “he” was the guy Crystal Morgan’s husband had sent.
She took a moment to straighten her uniform, then followed Alice back to the office area. Her first impression was that Crystal had been right; Vince Nanini did look like he could be a bodyguard. He certainly didn’t fit the computer geek stereotype. He had the bald head and swarthy complexion like Vin Diesel, but he was bigger than the actor. Not just in height, but in the width of his shoulders and the size of his biceps.
His white T-shirt stretched over a solid chest and flat abdomen, then disappeared beneath the waistline of a pair of tan khakis. Nikes covered his feet. He wore no jewelry, no heavy chains, rings, or earrings. Nothing custom made or terribly expensive, except, perhaps, for the watch on his right wrist. Katherine had a feeling it cost a small fortune. Definitely more than her trusty Timex.
“Mr. Nanini?” she said, holding out her hand.
He didn’t offer his.
“You’re the officer in charge?” The scowl he gave her was accompanied by a quick up-and-down look.
From behind the counter, Alice answered for her. “This is Officer Katherine Ward. Our chief is in the hospital, and Sergeant Landros is out of the office at the moment.”
“I am the officer handling this case,” Katherine added, letting her hand drop back to her side. She knew some men still held chauvinistic views about women police officers. She’d learned the best way to correct that was to take control. “May I see some identification?”
He pulled out a passport and a business card and handed her the two. “My partner and I specialize in computer security,” he said. “Tomoro Industries is one of our clients. Thomas Morgan, the president and owner of that business, is also a personal friend, which is why I’m here. It appears Mr. Morgan’s teenage daughter has run off with a guy she met through the Internet.”
“So I’ve heard.” Katherine looked at his business card—which identified him as Vincent Nanini, President of VR Protection Services—and then at his passport. Actually, his full name was Vincent Dominic Nanini, age thirty-eight, height six feet two and weight one-ninety. Those pounds were all muscle, from what she could see. His address was in Seattle, Washington.
She handed back his passport but kept the business card. “Crystal said you worked for the FBI. May I also see your badge?”
“I’m not an agent,” he said. “I did work for the bureau for a while as a consultant.”
“Are you presently with any law enforcement agency?”
She waved off his explanation. “Then I’ll be asking the questions.”
Let me introduce this talented writer!
Maris Soule has had 5 mysteries and 25 category romance and romantic suspense books published. She is a two time RITA finalist, as well as a winner and finalist in many other contests. Born and raised in California, she was working on a master’s degree in art history at U.C. Santa Barbara when she was swept off her feet by a red-head with blue eyes. She taught art for 8 years before retiring to raise a family, but soon discovered she not only loved teaching, painting, and reading books, she wanted to write. The Soules now live in Michigan in the summer and Florida in the winter, but they love to travel—by plane, train, car, cruise ship… or on the sailboat they own.