Saturday, February 29, 2020

Virtually Yummy: Recipes that Inspire

I'm excited to announce a new cookbook, brought to you by the authors of the High-Tech Crime Solvers series. Don't worry -- no need for any high-tech skills to cook these delicious recipes!!! Each one of them inspired a scene in our thrillers.

Recipes that Inspire
Kindle ★ Nook  Apple 

The recipes in this book come from different sources: some of them are treasured family recipes, some were garnered from our travels around the world, and others—inspired by the adventures of our characters and by their culinary feats.

Join us for a taste of hearty Rutabega soup, Mexican delicacies such as Mole Source, Berry Salsa and Mexican Omelet, French pastries such as Tart Tatin, and Indian deserts such as Mango Phirni. No matter where these recipes come from, we find them not only delicious but also inspiring. We hope you will too.

Our characters love eating and they love to cook. Often, they do it together. They come from our multi-author series, High-Tech Crime Solvers, centered around the fantastic new promise of high technology and the endless possibilities for crime that technology offers, in a world where getting away with murder can be not only plausible, but easy…if you just know how.

To enjoy Virtually Yummy, no high-tech skills are needed. Whip it up and be inspired!

 The High-Tech Crime Solvers series includes:

Virtually Lace by Uvi Poznansky: 
Michael Morse, an expert in VR simulation, stumbles on a dead body on the beach. A suspect himself, can Michael stay free for long enough to identify the real culprit?
Virtually Undead by Robert I. Katz: 
Neurosurgeon Michael Foreman is drawn into a twisted conspiracy when his best friend is murdered playing a new video game, Virtually Undead.
Virtually Harmless by P. D. Workman: 
Private consultant Micah Miller’s involvement in law enforcement is limited to the composite pictures that she produces with her computer and colored pencils. But everything is turned upside down when she involves herself in the case of an infant found abandoned in the Sweetgrass Hills.
Virtually Dead by Edwin Dasso: 
When multiple executives in Vancouver begin disappearing and are then found dead with no signs of trauma, private investigator and former FBI agent Wes Watley is asked by a friend of a friend to investigate.

Virtually Timeless by Casi McLean:  
Twins Sydney and Noah Monaco become involved in a conspiracy involving attempted rape, kidnapping, assault and an ancient artifact that isn’t supposed to exist.

Virtually Gone by Jacquie Biggar: 
When Detective Matthew Roy and reporter Julie Crenshaw are called on to investigate a string of sexual abuse cases, they don’t expect Julie to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.
Virtually Undetectable by Libby Fischer Hellmann: 
Fired Bank Manager Rachel Foreman and her mother, renowned investigator Ellie Foreman, track through the lawless  corners of the web to find out who is targeting the female CEO of a Fortune 500 company who is accused of murdering a disgruntled former employee.
Virtually Impossible by Barbara Ebel: 
Dr. Hook Hookie extrapolates genetic information that informs patients of their hereditary health risks. But he isn't the only one with a use for the high-tech genetic machinery—a villainess with ill purposes stalks the Medical Center.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Virtually Undead: a gripping techno thriller!

I'm thrilled to present the new multi-author series High-Tech Crime Solvers, and the new volume in it...

From USA Today Bestselling Author, Robert I. Katz, comes a gripping techno-thriller, part of a multi-author series tied together by an interlocking cast of characters, all centered around the fantastic new promise of high technology and the endless possibilities for crime that technology offers, in a world where getting away with murder can be not only plausible, but easy…if you just know how.

Michael Foreman is a neurosurgeon, hard-working, successful and highly respected. In his spare time, he plays the piano.

Ralph Guthrie is a gamer. He makes his living playing online games. He also plays the clarinet. Ralph Guthrie and Michael Foreman are old friends and play together in an amateur jazz band.

But when Ralph is invited to play and critique a new video game, Virtually Undead, and suffers a fatal heart attack, along with nine other players, it quickly becomes apparent that virtual reality has reached out of the virtual world and into the real.

Why has a gas explosion rocked the city? Why has the New York sewer system repeatedly expelled raw sewage into the city’s waterways? And why does a single traffic light downtown persistently malfunction, causing cars to repeatedly crash?

Are all these things tied together? If so, how and why?

When the NYPD and the FBI ask Michael Foreman to consult, he can’t resist the challenge, and finds himself quickly drawn into the escalating mayhem of a video game that’s becoming all too real.

(Volume II of High-Tech Crime Solvers)

Neurosurgeon Michael Foreman is drawn into a twisted conspiracy when his best friend is murdered playing a new video game, Virtually Undead.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

New Cover for Virtually Lace!

I've designed a new cover because the expanded version of Virtually Lace is now volume I of the High-Tech Crime Solvers series, written by a power team of authors!

From USA Today bestselling author, Uvi Poznansky, comes a gripping techno-thriller, part of a multi-author series tied together by an interlocking cast of characters, all centered around the fantastic new promise of high technology and the endless possibilities for crime that technology offers, in a world where getting away with murder can be not only plausible, but easy…if you just know how.

Haunted by discovering the body of a beautiful dancer, Michael recreates the murder scene in a virtual reality simulation. Can he solve the mystery, before the man who killed Lace turns on the woman he loves?
Suffering some memory loss due to a violent incident in her own past, Ash is unable to identify her attacker. Despite the persistent fear,  she puts her life in danger to draw out the man she suspects of killing Lace, so as to avenge her murder. 
Meanwhile, the cops treat Michael as their prime suspect. The only reason they haven’t arrested him yet is an urgent rescue mission, as Laguna Beach is engulfed in flames. Will Michael manage to slip away from them and save his sweetheart before it’s too late? Will he catch the murderer?

★★★★★ "I started reading the book and couldn't put it down, so I finished it in one day."

Virtually Lace

(Volume I of High-Tech Crime Solvers)

Paperback  Hardcover


Sunday, February 16, 2020

A thoroughly enjoyable tale

Dan Strawn took up creative writing after a long career in business and education. In addition to Dan's longer works, his stories and essays have been published in a number of editions of Idaho Magazine and Trail Blazer Magazine. I am delighted to find his review for my thriller, Overdose:

Reviewed in the United States on February 14, 2020
Overdose is Book 3 in the Ash Suspense thrillers with a Dash of Romance.

As with all Poznansky’s stories, I found it a thoroughly enjoyable tale that kept me turning the pages. Her first-person, present-tense narrative drops Overdose readers into the story on page one and doesn’t let them relax until the last word of the last scene.

Reminiscent of James Stewart and Grace Kelley in Hitchcock’s fifties classic, Rear Window, Michael and protagonist Ash parley a dose of romantic tension with devil-may-care risk taking. Dr. Patel is a first class, easy to dislike villain. Ash’s mom and dad play topsy-turvy supporting roles. Karishma, whether she’s in India or California, becomes a frequent and often unwilling prop in moving the story forward.And Susan … Poor Susan.

Then, there’s Poznansky’s tiny, tongue-in-cheek vignettes: “…I blush. Then I blush even deeper, annoyed for allowing myself to blush in the first place ….”

As usual, Poznansky’s writing in Overdose entertains, which, after all, is the primary purpose of any story in every genre.

A must read, I'm obliged now to read books 1 and 2 of the series.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Cover reveal: Overkill

Ta-Dah! Here is the cover of my upcoming thriller!

My cover is inspired by the moment Ash finds an access to a hidden room:

An hour later, the installer comes out again. “Miss?” 
And I say, “What now?” 
“I found a space.”
“What? Excuse me?”
“Well, while nailing a new tackless strip in the closet, I took a back swing with the hammer and—quite by accident—hit the wall behind me. I expected to feel brickwork. Instead, I felt plasterboard, which cracked against my blow. I was pissed at myself—oh, forgive me! I should be more careful with my language around you, Miss.”
“No matter, just go on.”
“Like I’ve said, I was angry with myself for the extra work I created. Then I noticed something behind the hole. So I knocked through and found a passageway to a spiral flight of stairs.”
I follow him into the closet, which is now full of swirling dust, and lean in through the hole, thinking this hidden space should have been obvious to me right from the start. After all, I could see a little window up there from the outside, but thought nothing of it.
There is a chalky taste in my throat, and the dust is clogging up my airways as I climb. The rises are high, and the industrial pole that holds the treads seems a bit unstable. Each one of them in turn clangs as I step up, higher and higher, but the sound soon dies away below me. The walls close in on me as it this is a trap. There is barely enough headroom and practically no light except at the top of the staircase. 
By the time I reach it, my trepidation grows. Here is a narrow, barely lit room, with a tiny window looking out across the backyard. It has a distant view of Clearwater High School. I recognize it by the slightly curved facade of that building, although the slogan etched on it is too far to read, even if I squint. But I do know it. Home of the Tornadoes. 
For a brief moment I consider turning this space into a new office. Finding it should feel great, should feel like adventure. Except for one thing.
The dread.

 Love Suspense? Prepare to be thrilled 

Monday, February 3, 2020

A scene inspired by soup? Yes! It's an Overkill

My upcoming thriller is Overkill. I won't tell you what it's about -- not yet -- but I would like to share with you how I use cooking in my books. When I write romance, a scene where the lovers cook together greatly enhances that warmth and the feeling of being home. When I write a thriller, a cooking scene helps to soften the rough edges, so you relax for a moment and prepare yourself for the next edge-of-your-seat twist.

My dear friend and USA Today bestselling author Aaron Paul Lazar, who is a great nature photographer and cook, shared this great recipe with me:

  • 2-3 leeks, rinsed and sliced
  • 4-6 large potatoes, cut into cubes
  • 1 huge or two small rutabegas, cubed
  • 6 quarts chicken stock
  • ½ cup cream or evaporated milk (I actually use the whole can)
  • Lots of Butter for sauteeing leeks and making croutons LOL.
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • Fresh dill, ½ cup, finely chopped
  • 4 egg yolks, beaten
  • Salt, Pepper, to taste

  • In large stock pot, sauté leeks in butter until golden
  • While above is cooking, peel and cut potatoes and parsnips. Place in bowl of water to keep fresh.
  • Drain and discard water, add potatoes and rutabegas. Mix with leeks, cook on medium heat, covered, for about 12 minutes
  • Sprinkle flour over veggies and mix.
  • Cook 1 minute.
  • Add chicken stock and cook until vegetables are tender.
  • Either with a blender or food processor, grind up the soup, but leave some large chunks for texture.
  • Add dill, salt, pepper.
  • Mix cream with egg yolks in a small bowl. Add a ladle or two of the hot soup mixture to the bowl, mix together, then add to the soup in a steady stream.
  • Serve with homemade croutons. (Cut up bread and fry in butter with Italian herbs, garlic powder, onion powder. Bake on a cookie sheet for about 30 minutes at 350 or until crunchy.)
Here is the passage inspired by this dish:

Seated on the couch next to his mother, the child is staring listlessly into thin air. Perhaps the horrific scene plays over and over again in his memory, from the moment the monarch butterfly flitted past his nose to that other moment, when his father was carried away under a blank sheet, and all that was left was a pool of dark blood being dragged into elongated smears by the wheels of the gurney. 
“Mike,” I say, trying to shake him out of his state of shock.
He nods, but says not a word. 
Perhaps the shots that killed his father are still echoing in his mind time and time again. 
“Mike,” I say. “Help me. I need you.”
He lifts his eyes to me. “You do?”
I lean over to his ear and whisper, “We should prepare some food. None of us has eaten anything all day.”
He hangs his head down between his fragile shoulders. “Not hungry.” 
“I understand, Mike, I really do.” I bend over and kiss the top of his head even as he turns it away. “But now, look at your Mom. She looks as if she’s about to faint. Help me take care of her.”
He slips out of the squashy cushion and we go to the kitchen together. “I don’t think she’s ready for a big meal. It’ll get stuck in her throat. I know it. I feel the same.”
“How about soup?”
“Yeah,” he says. “Soup.”
I open the refrigerator. In addition to some leftover clear broth, there are plenty of vegetables in the drawer. I take them out, rinse them, and set them next to the cutting board. Then I put a knife in his hand. 
“Go ahead,” I say. “Slice away.”
At first he chops the leeks with bursts of anger, to the point that I begin to doubt myself, doubt the wisdom of entrusting him with a sharp tool. 
But then—once I sauté them in butter in a large stock pot, once they become golden and the kitchen fills with their aroma—his mood seems to soften. By the time he gets to the last leek, his moves are more controlled, which results in precise cubing.
I cut yellow-fleshed rutabega by myself, because this root is too hard for him, and peel a few potatoes and parsnips. These go into a bowl of water, so they don’t brown by the time he’s ready to cut them.
“Here you go,” he says, as he adds them to the pot. 
I set the cover on top of the pot and cook the vegetables for a few minutes, before sprinkling a dash of salt and bit of flower to thicken the mix. Then I add chicken stock and a bit of fresh dill. He takes a curious peek into the pot and sniffs the piping steam. His eyes begin to regain their shine when I ask him to fill the pepper mill.
Mike makes the peppercorns bounce, most of them into the mill, some all over the kitchen counter. “I didn’t think I was hungry,” he says. “But now I am.”
“Well,” I say, while grinding the soup in the blender. “You’ll have to wait a bit longer, it’s not ready yet.”
Mike watches impatiently as I blend cream with egg yolks in a small bowl, ladle some hot soup mixture into the mix, then add it back to the soup in a steady stream.
“Is it ready now?” he asks.
“Almost,” I say. “How about some croutons?”
“Mommy is the best at making them.” 
Mike runs to Tracy, who is still on the couch, still cupping her face in her hands. He touches the tips of her fingers ever so softly, till she removes them from her puffy eyes. 
“I need your help, Mommy.”
“You do?”
“Yes,” he says. “Croutons.”
Tracy rises up and drags her feet into the kitchen, her face awfully pale. Somehow her hands know what to do, even if she seems absentminded. She cuts up bread and fries it in butter with Italian herbs, garlic powder, and onion powder. Then she spreads the croutons over a cooking sheet. Meanwhile, Mike unpacks his backpack in the living room. He bites the apple she tucked inside this morning. Boy, he must be hungry.
“I don’t know why I’m taking all this so hard,” she says to me, under her breath. 
I take the cooking sheet from her hands and set it in the heated oven. “You loved him.”
She looks out the kitchen window at the TV crews, then turns her back on them. “I did, but then I stopped trusting him. He had an affair and wouldn’t admit to it.”
She waves her hand, tries for a smile. “Ed and I separated two years ago. The divorce took effect last Valentine’s Day, at which time I turned our wedding picture to the wall and thought it was over. I was done with him. Why am I so brokenhearted? Why am I missing him so?”

Picture by Aaron Paul Lazar