Friday, May 12, 2017

**GIVEAWAY** Interview with Pamela Wechsler - The Graves

Today I'm interviewing new to me author Pam Wechsler about her new release, The Graves. 
Be sure and enter to win a copy for your library, details below

Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Series: Abby Endicott #2
Release Date: 05-02-2017
Buy It: Amazon/B&N/Kobo/IndieBound/Audible

Abby Endicott, the chief of the District Attorney’s homicide unit in Boston, returns in the heart-racing follow-up to Mission Hill. Things are looking good for Abby: she’s top pick to be the next District Attorney, and her musician boyfriend Ty has moved in, despite her upper crust family’s objections. But a serial killer is on the loose, and with two college-aged girls dead and another missing, time is running out. When the sons of a prominent government official are linked to the murders, Abby pushes back, stopping at nothing to find justice for the girls. This time, the killer could be right under her nose, and she may be the next victim.
In The Graves, former prosecutor turned television writer Pamela Wechsler delivers a tense and enthralling Boston-set thriller about the intersection of power, privilege, and justice.

Giveaway is for one print copy US ONLY of
The Graves by Pamela Wechsler
Please use Rafflecopter form below to enter
Good Luck!

Excerpt courtesy St. Martin's Press:

Chapter One

Ten years in the district attorney’s office has taught me to never let down my guard, even here on Beacon Hill. Walking on West Cedar Street, I detect the first signs of danger—footsteps and cigarette smoke. No one from this neighborhood smokes anymore, at least not in public. It could be a stray tourist, checking out the gas lanterns and cobblestone streets, but I reach in my tote and search for my canister of pepper spray—just in case. A gloved hand covers my mouth. I start to pivot around but someone yanks my shoulder and pulls me in.
“Give it up,” he says.
I’m relieved. It’s just a mugging. The man doesn’t even seem to be armed. I palm the pepper spray and surrender my tote, which he passes to a second man, who rifles through it and tosses the contents. The key to my Prius lands under an iron boot scraper. A bottle of Chanel No. 5 shatters and splatters on the brick sidewalk.
The second man opens my wallet and pulls out the bills.
“Twenty-five bucks? You gotta have more than that,” he says.
“Take the bag, it’s Prada,” I say.
“It’s probably fake.”
“It’s real, worth over a thousand dollars. I have a Rolex, too.”
The first man takes the bait. As soon as he loosens his grip on my body and twists my wrist to inspect my watch, I aim the pepper spray at his eyes and press down hard on the nozzle. Nothing happens. The can is empty, something neither of us expected.
I run into the street but only make it a few steps before my heel catches on a jagged brick. I fall forward, directly into the path of an oncoming bike messenger, and we both go down hard. The cyclist looks at me and adjusts his helmet. He hesitates, shrugs, and climbs back on his bike. I watch him speed away.
I look up, see my attacker’s face for the first time, and he sees mine. I don’t know who’s more surprised.
I’m furious. “Freddie, what the hell are you doing?”
He’s mortified. “Ms. Endicott? Oh, man, it’s not what you think.”
Although I haven’t prosecuted Freddie Craven before, many of my colleagues have. He’s a midlevel drug dealer who moonlights as an informant. He was a witness for me last year, in one of my murder cases. Freddie is not the most upstanding citizen, but prosecutors don’t get to choose our witnesses. In most cases, we’re lucky if we have witnesses at all.
“Freddie, we talked about this,” I say.
“I didn’t know it was you,” he says.
“That’s not the point.”
He puts his arm under my elbow and helps me to my feet. There are specks of blood on the hemline of my slate-gray skirt, my stockings are shredded, and pieces of gravel are embedded in my knees.
Freddie activates the flashlight on his phone, and we search for my belongings. My prescription for Ativan blew into a planter full of purple pansies. My gold badge landed on a sewer grate.
“You have to stop mugging people,” I say, “at least until our case has gone through the appeals process.”
“I wasn’t. I won’t. I swear,” he says.
The second man pipes up. “Hey, I know you. You’re that lady district attorney.”
“You remember my cousin Martin.” Freddie introduces us as though we’re colleagues at a cocktail party. “You met him that time you came by my mother’s house in Dorchester.”
“Martin, you’re on probation,” I say. “You still have two years hanging over your head.”
“You gonna lock us up?” Martin says.
“She can’t,” Freddie says. “She’s not Five-O. She’s a lawyer.”
“I should report you both, but I’m not going to let you screw up my murder case, or my evening.”
“Sorry about all this.” Freddie takes my tote from Martin and hands it back to me. “It was just like a misunderstanding. You know what I’m saying?”
“Go home,” I say. “A detective will be by in an hour to check on you. Be there.”
“Sure, it’s all good.”
Freddie and Martin shuffle toward the Park Street subway station. I brush myself off, apply a fresh coat of lipstick, and continue toward the Liberty Hotel, where my boyfriend, Ty, and a glass of Malbec await.

Copyright © 2017 by Pamela Wechsler

Hi Pamela and welcome to The Reading Frenzy. Please tell my readers and me a bit about The Graves.
The Graves is a legal thriller about Boston homicide prosecutor Abby Endicott. Abby is smart, competitive, and adrenalin-addicted. She’s also a Boston Brahmin, with a disapproving family, and a complicated relationship. Some of the characters and story lines in The Graves are drawn from my own experiences as a homicide prosecutor in the Boston district attorney’s office.

The blurb says this is a follow up to your first novel staring Abby Endicott. 1)- Do fans need to read Mission Hill before tackling The Graves?
The Graves is the second in a series but I don’t think you have to read Mission Hill to enjoy it. Both books involve murder cases, but these cases are not related. Also, both books follow Abby’s personal life—her relationship with her boyfriend and her family—and The Graves has references to some of the earlier events, but you don’t have to read Mission Hill first to follow Abby’s personal arc.

Is this a two and done series or are there more cases for Abby to solve in the future?
There’s more to come! I just submitted a first draft of the third book to my publisher. The book involves another murder case and picks up Abby’s personal life where it left off in the Graves. It’s scheduled to come out in the spring of 2018.

Pamela they say write what you know and you certainly did yourself being a prosecutor turned TV writer. Your resume for TV writing is quite impressive and you in fact presently write for CBS’s new blockbuster, Bull.
How does screenwriting differ from novel writing?
Writing a novel is a solitary pursuit—for me, that’s the biggest difference. Novelists spend their days alone with their thoughts. Television writing is a collaborative effort; a group of writers work together in a writers’ room, breaking stories, developing plot lines, and creating character arcs. TV writers also interact with actors, producers, directors, and crew members.

So your plate must be pretty full with your day job. When do you find time to write your novels?
I can usually find the time. A lot of days, I drag myself out of bed at 4 or 5 a.m. and write for a couple of hours before heading to the office . When we’re filming an episode of Bull, I’m often getting ready to leave my hotel before the sun is up, so I bring my laptop with me and squeeze in some writing between takes. When I’m actually writing a script, however, it can be more of a challenge. I find it disorienting
to move back and forth, from writing a scene about Bull and then one about Abby, in the same day.

Pamela will you share with us your journey to authordom. Was it a conscious decision, are you an accidental author or something totally different?
About six years ago, I took a break from television writing and moved back to Boston. I was working in a DA’s Office when I was contacted by producers for The Judge, a movie that was being filmed in the area; they hired me to be their legal advisor. While working on the movie, I became friendly with Billy Bob Thornton, who played the role of the prosecutor—he also happens to be an Academy Award winning writer. We spent a lot of time talking about what it’s like to be a prosecutor and he suggested that I write a novel. So, I joined a novel writing workshop, studied the craft, and wrote Mission Hill.

I know other lawyers who have successful second careers as authors the one that comes to mind first is Linda Fairstein and I have gobbled up her Alex Cooper series.
Why do you think lawyers make good authors?
Trial attorneys are natural story tellers. They take a set of complicated facts and characters, and come up with a simple but compelling story. Opening statements and closing arguments are carefully crafted pieces of writing, designed to grab the jury’s interest and keep them entertained. The biggest difference between lawyers and authors is that authors get to make stuff up.

Pamela you have many great critical reviews by peers and I even see one from fellow Bostonian and my friend Hank Phillipi Ryan.
Do you like to read your reviews whether editorial or reader or do you steer clear of them?
I have to admit that I read the reviews. I’m always looking to improve my craft and I think it’s important to know what people respond to. Plus, I can’t help it—I want to know what people think.

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to answer my questions. Good Luck with The Graves.
Do you attend any signings/author events where fans can meet you?
Thanks so much for having me. I’m gearing up for the second season of Bull so I don’t have any events planned in the immediate future. I’ll post any upcoming readings or signings on my website
Abby Endicott #1

Connect with Pamela - Website - Facebook - Twitter
Meet Pamela:
PAMELA WECHSLER grew up in the Boston area and is a graduate of Tufts University and Boston University School of Law. After spending seventeen years as a criminal prosecutor at the local, state and federal levels, she moved to Los Angeles to work as a legal consultant, writer, and producer for network television shows. Her credits include: Law and Order; Law and Order: Criminal Intent; Law and Order: Trial by Jury; Conviction; Canterbury's Law; Doubt; and Bull. She is now the author of Mission Hill and The Graves.

Today's Gonereading item is:
A Sherlock Holmes Doll
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  1. Thanks for this compelling novel which I would enjoy greatly.

  2. This is new to me but it looks really good and I love your interview. Happy Friday Debbie and thanks for sharing this and have a good weekend!

  3. Really fascinating interview Debbie and well I am tempted to at least put it into my wish list for reading!

  4. This sounds like a John Grisham legal thriller with a twist. I love it and it's also great that the books can stand alone. Thanks for the feature, I always discover new books and authors here :)

    Happy Mother's Day!

    1. You're welcome Braine. Glad to see you back around!! :)

  5. Neat learning how Pamela came to writing her legal thrillers. Wow, busy life writing for TV and novels. The books sound great.

    Thanks for the interview and excerpt and of course, the giveaway opportunity.

    1. You're welcome Sophia Rose, when I saw she wrote for Bull I had to interview her.

  6. Thanks for the chance, I'd love this.

  7. This sounds like such a great book!!

  8. This thriller reads like it would be right up my alley; especially legal thrillers. Every page is a turner in which something new is learned.

  9. Sounds like a really good murder mystery thriller. I love these types of books.