"It was the hour of prowling bears, circling nightowls, vengeful spirits, and savage hearts. It was the hour of predators."
Two murders have shocked and divided the community of Bella Coola, a small, isolated village in a remote river valley on the coast of British Columbia. The evidence points to a teenaged Nuxalk boy, and the simmering tension between whites and tribe members heats up. To find the truth RCMP Inspector Marcus Chao must sort through misleading clues, cultural conflicts, tangled relationships, sexual scandals, and even indications that the crimes might have been committed by a sorcerer.
Marcus is a man whose life has skidded into remorse and misery. His own infidelity has ended his marriage to the woman he still loves, and now he finds himself with only two things to keep his sinking spirits afloat: the need to serve justice and his eternal fascination with solving the mystery of the crime. This latest puzzle, however, is proving to be a maze of intrigue and suspense, and his mettle as a detective as well as his principles will be tested.
Lane Stark has had three enduring passions through her life: travel, art, and the written word. She has traveled the world, lived abroad in both Europe and Asia, and experienced many cultures. She holds a B.A. and M.A. in linguistics, has studied eight languages, and recently ended a career as a graphic artist. She has now turned her creative attentions to full-time writing and leisure-time photography. Travel provides a wealth of inspiration for books, and she finds herself weaving tales around the people she meets and the places she explores. She and her husband have indulged their love of the vagabond life by moving into an RV full-time and following the roadways to new adventures. She is currently working on a second novel featuring RCMP Inspector Marcus Chao, A Premature Death.
Q. What inspires your writing?
A. I’m a traveler, by nature, so I find more than enough inspiration in the people I meet, the places I go, and the things I see. Sometimes, for example, when I’m spinning a tale in my head, a place emerges from my memories as the perfect setting. Or the reverse. When I visited Bella Coola, my first impression was that it would be the ideal setting for a mystery. grew from that.
Q. What is your favorite thing about being an author?
A. I was an only child and a bit of an introvert, so I spent a lot of time in my imagination, making up stories and people. It’s always been my first love, creating whole worlds out of nothing but my ideas.
Q. What is the toughest part of being an author?
A. Stealing time from “real life” to write. I’m hoping to sell enough books to make writing my real life.
Q. If you could not be author, what would you do/be?
A. I was, for many years, an artist. I have a natural talent for it, but not much passion. I earned a living as a graphic artist, a scientific illustrator, and a portrait artist. I suppose I could do it again, if necessary.
Q. What would the story of your life be entitled?
A. The Adventures of a Rolling Stone
Q. What is your favorite book of all time?
A. John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany. If there were ever a true Great American Novel, that is it.
Q. Which character from ANY book are you most like?
A. I always loved and identified with Helen, the wife of Thomas Lynley, in Elizabeth George’s mysteries. Stubborn, opinionated, but trying always to be loyal and kind. I mourned when George killed her off.
Q. What character from all of your book are you most like?
A. I’m currently working on a rewrite of a paranormal book I wrote several years ago when that genre consisted of Anne Rice, Stephen King, and not much else. I’ve decided to bring it to light now that such books are so popular. The heroine, Hannah, is me. She and I are easily bored by the status quo, adventurous, always seeking that unknown around the corner, and curious about everything.
Q. What is your favorite season?
A. Spring. My husband and I have been living in our RV for over a year, and our goal is to follow spring weather around the country.
Q. What inspired your book cover(s)? Or what is your favorite book cover and why?
A. The cover of The Hour of Predators is a photograph of the Coast Mountains, which surround and isolate Bella Coola and shape the culture of the place. The cover of A Toll to the Devil is a publicity photo of my father taken in Mexico City when he and his band were playing there in the thirties. It’s a bow to him. His experiences as a musician inspired the book, and he helped immensely with the details of an era I have only read about.
Q. Tell me something funny that happened while on a book tour or while promoting your book.
A. Several people have been surprised I’m a woman. Apparently Lane is also a man’s name, although I haven’t met one.
Q. Are you working on something new?
A. The aforementioned rewrite of the paranormal novel, the second Marcus Chao mystery, A Premature Death, and, on the back burner for now, a novel set in Texas, which has been my home for thirty years.
Q. Anything you want to say to followers of this blog or those that are just stopping by?
A. If you read and enjoy an Indie novel, please accept Amazon’s invitation to rate and review the book (the last page of every Kindle book) or post a review on Barnes and Noble, Goodreads, or Smashwords. Honest reader reviews help authors hone their skills and become better writers. We rely on you for feedback.