Monday, November 3, 2008

"The Devil Can Wait" Released Today!

© Marta Stephens 2008 all rights reserved

Thumb through the pages of your favorite book. Now, look close between the lines. That’s where the author bled onto the pages and wove together a mystic world of fiction fed by life experiences. Every line of narrative and section of dialogue holds a thimbleful of truth. The second book in the Sam Harper Crime Mystery series is no exception. THE DEVIL CAN WAIT was forged from the memory of an unholy event as frightening as it was intriguing. It’s a tale about belief, unholy forces, and one man’s determination to stop an obsessed killer.

The story behind the story involved a quarrel and a cursed black pearl ring that nearly killed the object of a jilted young man’s affection. Filled with resentment, he begged her to take the ring as a parting gesture. Within days of accepting his gift, the young woman fell victim to a number of life-threatening accidents that came in quick succession. She survived each incident, but evil remained a constant threat to her life. It was only after she destroyed the black pearl ring that all appeared to return to normal.

Such was the spark behind THE DEVIL CAN WAIT; fiction with a taste of the unexplained. I was an impressionable eight-year-old, unable to distinguish fact from fiction, yet that event seared itself into my mind and eventually gave birth to THE DEVIL CAN WAIT. Can inanimate objects receive and transmit energies through a single touch? Is the good or evil nature of a person a predictor of luck or misfortune?

Years later, I can neither prove nor disprove that curses exist, yet I’m left to wonder what truths have slipped between the pages of this Sam Harper mystery that kept critical e-mails from reaching my editor? What power made manuscript files disappear and Internet connections break off for days at a time without rhyme or reason? Coincidence? I thought it was, until the literary contract sent to my publisher at the same street address I’ve used for several years found its way back into my mailbox three months later marked, “Insufficient address.” Subsequent mailing attempts met the same fate, yet my greeting card arrived at her office without a hitch. I can’t explain these things nor is it clear why the first three artists who were eager to work on the book cover had to stop soon after starting due to … pressing events that forced them to quit.

In THE DEVIL CAN WAIT, the city of Chandler, Massachusetts is plunged into terror when the bodies of three local teenagers wash ashore. While homicide detective Sam Harper hunts down the guilty, a sinister plot emerges overseas. From the Vatican to the jungles of South America, a cursed black pearl ring, the demonic prophecy it represents, and the men who pursue its powers find their unfortunate way into Harper’s turf.

Enthralled by the ring’s story and a front-page spread, newspaper reporter Jennifer Blake agrees to pick up the ring at a local pawnshop for her former college professor. When she does, unforeseen events shoot Blake to the top of Harper's prime suspect lists. Soon, the seemingly unrelated cases converge and the heat is on for Harper to expose the truth behind a Vatican secret and stop the self-righteous man who does the unthinkable in the name of God.

Did the sound of keystrokes tapping life into THE DEVIL CAN WAIT wake a slumbering presence from the depth of obscurity where holiness clashes against the dark and profane? I’ll let you, the reader, be the judge. The only certainty is that THE DEVIL CAN WAIT can wait no more. It’s here, so light a candle, take a sip of your favorite brew, ease into that over-stuffed chair, and immerse yourself in the pages of THE DEVIL CAN WAIT—if you dare.
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Marta Stephens writes crime mystery/suspense. THE DEVIL CAN WAIT and SILENCED CRY are available online at familiar shops such as all the Amazons, Barnes & Noble, Borders, Books-a-Million, and Powells. Other locations include, but are not limited to those listed on her website at Excerpts from the Sam Harper Crime Mysteries and reviews are also available on the author’s website.

THE DEVIL CAN WAIT (November 3, 2008)
© Marta Stephens 2008
ISBN: 978-1-905202-86-7
316 Pages

SILENCED CRY (April 2007)
© Marta Stephens 2007
ISBN: 978-1-905202-72-0
279 Pages
Honorable Mention, 2008 New York Book FestivalTop Ten, 2007 Preditors and Editors Reader Poll (mystery)

Published internationally by BeWrite Books, UK, 32 Bryn Road South, Wigan, Lancashire, WN4 8QR.



Congratulations Marta! A really great book, well done. And no, I'm not biased at all, how can I be when all the reviews coming in agree with me :)

Marta Stephens said...

Thank you, Cait. You know better than most all the work that went into this book and the number of people who graciously gave of their time to ensure its success. My deepest appreciation to all--you're at the top of my list. I couldn't have done this without you!

Kim Smith said...

I second Cait's views, Marta. Much deserved praise for one helluva book.
hugs! k

Jodi Lee (Morrighan) said...

Congrats, Marta!

s.w. vaughn said...


(Hey, my comment disappeared...)

Gotta go change a tire - but I shall be back to WOO HOO some more!


Anonymous said...

The inspiration from your impressionable childhood memory/story and curious "events" delaying publication are just as intriguing as the novel!

Write on!

Lynn Pritchett
Contributing Writer, Suite 101

Marta Stephens said...

Hi Lynn! Thanks so much for joining me here at MB4 on my special day. Yes, the whole thing started creeping everyone out. LOL These were just the tip of the iceberg. Several other "delays" happened after I wrote this piece. You'll be able to read about them in the days/weeks to come!

Many thanks for your kind words and good wishes.

Marta Stephens said...

Hi Lynn! Thanks so much for joining me here at MB4 on my special day. Yes, the whole thing started creeping everyone out. LOL These were just the tip of the iceberg. Several other "delays" happened after I wrote this piece. You'll be able to read about them in the days/weeks to come!

Many thanks for your kind words and good wishes.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I'm so thrilled for you, Marta. How exciting. Devil Can't Wait is going to be even bigger than Silenced Cry. You are on your way! Enjoy.

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Big congratulations, Marta! The story sounds great.

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

I know how hard you've worked on this book, Marta, it was non-stop for what seems like forever. It's a fitting sequel to Silenced Cry, and I, for one, can't wait for Sam Harper's third adventure! I'm going to post my review on my "day" here on MB4, Sunday. ;o)

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Marta! I can't wait for your vbt to begin...better get those assignments to you, huh???!!!!

Marta Stephens said...

Joylene, that's so sweet of you. Tell Ralphie Sam's back! ;)

Marilyn, I'm so glad you stopped by. Thank you!

Aaron,forever is right! You were sucha hugh help. Thank you!

Boomer! Yes by golly, send them on! I'm pumped and ready to go.

Thank you all for your good wishes. :)

Anonymous said...

What a day! The anticipation of a release day just builds and builds, and now your achievement is here for all to see! I know how you must feel and am so excited for you. I'll be even more excited when I feature your book cover next week! I'm so glad the timing worked out so I can give you a slot so close to the release date.

I hope your book finds its way into the hands of countless readers who will love it!

Erin Aislinn

Marta Stephens said...

Erin! Hi and yes!!! What GREAT timing on the cover!! It seems (knock on wood) the curse has been lifted at last by all the good wishes today.

Thanks so much for stopping by.