Book Jacket

 

rank  Editors Pick
word count 19682
date submitted 22.07.2009
date updated 01.04.2010
genres: Fiction, Thriller, Crime
classification: adult
incomplete

MUMMY'S BOY

JARED CONWAY

A dark and disturbing glimpse into the mind of a sociopath and the apparently impossible attempt by a young woman to expose his crimes.

 

Marcus was special. He'd always known it. Even at the age of six when he'd decided to kill his father. His privileged background should have produced a doctor, an academic, perhaps a diplomat. Instead, he killed people for fun.

Donna O'Prey is the most junior member of a small private security firm. A routine search for a missing teenage girl escalates into something much more serious when a ransom demand is received. Donna becomes convinced that Marcus is responsible for the abduction. Eleven years previously, while still a child, Marcus had been convicted of the brutal murder of two young children, but a Home Office review board has now sanctioned his release.

Donna needs all her battling qualities as she attempts to rescue the missing girl, but how will she cope when her own safety is threatened?

 
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tags

addiction, arson, crime, crime fiction, detective, heroin, kidnap, liverpool, murder, private eye, sociopath.

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Jared wrote 1431 days ago

Harper Collins review now in, based on the section submitted to Autonomy and amounting to only 19,000 + words – several of the reviewer’s concerns would, in my view, have been answered by reading the full manuscript. For instance, the question of motivation on the part of Marcus. I don’t accept it is necessary for a reader to understand what, if anything, made Marcus the sociopath he evidently is. His reasons for the vendetta against a particular family group are explained at the end of the book, but he’s not a misunderstood person or a child abuse victim, he’s just evil. I discussed this aspect of his character with a HC editor recently – she was unable to accept the concept of evil without the underlying causes being set out. My background has afforded me many opportunities to meet people with sociopathic natures; there’s rarely understandable justification for the way they are. Some people are hard-wired differently, they’re just evil. I have met many such people in my working life.
The question of Donna’s complex nature is also bought out more fully at a later stage, but I accept the reviewer is basing an opinion on only four chapters. As for the ‘too much happening’ reference, my concern has always been that the main thrust of the action takes place later, in particularly the end chapters, and that the early chapters would not have sufficient dramatic thrust – just shows how wrong I was! Too much, then, ah well.
I’m happy with the review in broad terms. I can’t argue that the book still needs work, I’ll never be entirely happy with it, the curse of any writer. Mummy’s Boy was my first book, written 8 years ago, and I’ve written two books since then with another at an advanced stage. I feel I’m a better writer now than I was at the time this book was written, but as my ‘firstborn’ I have a particular regard for Mummy’s Boy and will look at it again with a fresh eye.

HarperCollins Wrote
Congratulations on making it to the top of the authonomy pool. Obviously you’re succeeding at an author’s top job: grabbing the reader’s attention. Psychological thrillers are tricky – you need to balance intriguing characters with unique plot hooks and engineer both with lightning-fast pacing, but they’re also really popular. Which is good, because it means there’s a big potential audience for your writing. Unfortunately, it also means that publishers are seeing more submissions than ever. So to get publishers’ attention, you need to set yourself apart. My suggestions for your book focus on plot, character definition and perspective, three aspects of the manuscript where I feel that some careful honing of Mummy’s Boy could pay off in a big way, helping you to increase that initial pull and keep readers hooked until the final pages.

I love a manuscript that starts with a bang, but I found that I was a little overwhelmed by the number of bangs I encountered in the first pages of your manuscript. Balancing two alternating points of view is always tough in terms of maintaining balance, pacing and tension, but when you’ve combined multiple storylines within each of those two perspectives, it begins to become taxing on the reader. For example, in Marcus’s storyline, we learn that something happened with his father, that he was involved in a previous triple murder, that he’s threatened an unidentified woman with murder, that something’s happening with a young girl named Celine, that somehow her aunt is involved, that something happened to his sister and that there’s someone named Clive involved. And then, of course, there’s a quite chilling Mummy moment. With all of this in the first 20,000 words, there are too many threads for the reader to balance. I wonder if there’s a way that you could develop Marcus’s storyline in a more straightforward, action-based arc that would string out the connections gradually for the reader. It sounds counter-intuitive, but introducing these twists and turns more organically would actually help with the tension and pacing of the book – drawing it out for the reader rather than weighting it all at the beginning.

While the twists and turns of a thriller are what grab attention, all of that action needs to be anchored in complicated, believable characters. There were moments for me where I felt uncertain about Donna’s character, in particular. She reminds me a little of Angie Gennaro or of Lisbeth Salander: she’s a tough female character operating on her own terms in a very male world. I find those qualities in her really appealing, but she makes decisions in the manuscript that don’t feel rooted in her character. For example, when she lashes out at Dexter, I recoiled a bit, not because I didn’t like what she was doing, but because I didn’t understand why she was doing it. Dexter is Donna’s protector – he helped her get her job and has taken her under his wing. And Donna seems to trust him, which feels like it might be a rarity for her. So why does she lash out at him? Small details like this one are what separate interesting characters from characters that really come to life on the page. Try to examine the motivations of your characters and make sure their actions reveal who they are in a way that feels natural. This isn’t to say that characters can’t surprise us – that would make for intensely boring reading! But they need to surprise in a way that feels believable. The same goes for Marcus. Because we see the story through his perspective, there’s no secret about who perpetrated the crime of Celine’s abduction, so the real mystery needs to lie in why Marcus is the way he is. Even though he’s a psychopath, he needs to be a believable psychopath with deeply rooted (if detestable) motivations.

I’d also suggest that you look carefully at the frame of each character’s perspective. Donna’s feels more natural to me than Marcus’s, but it’s key that you make decisions about how the perspectives will work and then be consistent about applying them. For example, in the opening scene you anchor us immediately in Marcus’s perspective with the line “Marcus was special. He’d always known it,” which is something I’d suggest only Marcus would know. But then you take us outside of his perspective with a line like “a wristwatch would have confirmed the accuracy of his estimate to almost the second.” It’s a very fine distinction, but one that will lead to a fuller sense of voice in the manuscript. Once you’ve decided about how limited your perspectives will be, then also take a look at the language you use in descriptive passages. If you’re going to be writing strictly within a character’s perspective, tailoring your description to match how they would see the world can be a really effective way to subtly develop a stronger sense of character.

I hope that you’ll find my comments helpful as you revise. You’ve certainly got a talent for the creepy – there were a few moments when Marcus absolutely made me shudder – and for those cliff-hanger moments, which will serve you well in this genre. Congratulations again on making the editor’s desk, and good luck with Mummy’s Boy.

Jared wrote 1434 days ago

Reviewer now left the site so comments retained as a quote.

Jared!!!! OH MY GOD! (Yes she is GUSHING)... okay that came out wrong - lol - *turns deeply pink*

I am honoured that you allowed me to read Mummy's Boy all the way through to the end. You are such a master craftsman of building tension. This literally is like a mummy. Cobweb thin layers wound tightly, one on top of the other, to create a completely mesmerising and *binding* tension, tale and dramatic climax! I got so scared at one point I had to stop reading. That's how well you caught me. And I write some pretty disturbing stuff myself - so that's really saying something about your ability to personify creepy!

This is chilling, in that is coherent, calculated, genius, and detached in execution. Marcus is the bad boy every women with blood pumping in her veins falls for. And we're all so horribly gullible aren't we? Jared, my horror! My utter horror at the nature of Marcus' relationship with his mother. I cannot imagine how she felt justified!

I was turning GREEN with nausea at the thought of it. But HOLY CRAP I was jumping out of my own skin at dripping bloody corpses with nails through their eyes in the pitch dark. When Donna is threatened by that Furry man, and then stalked, her hackles rising, I never ever guessed who the perpetrator was! I was preempting the ending. I thought I had it all figured out! OH MY GOD! The twists, the turns, they make Houdini look like a bumbling amateur! They are so fast, such a quick succession of twists at the end, I felt like I was stuck in front of an expert marksman with a Gatling gun!

*I had to remind myself to breathe* - which I thought was *automatic*- you stole my breath! Bet you've longed to hear me say that to you ? (pulls stupid face) - you take my breath away!

This is superb writing. Your metaphors had me drooling with envy at your raw talent! Your vocabulary - oh swoon! Bet you can talk anyone into doing anything! This is such a lovely showcase of excellent, truly excellent writing.

*Stands and applauds* - and LONGS for the encore!

Poppet

xxxx

Geoffrey_Mann wrote 1494 days ago

Jared,

Mummy’s Boy not only is publishable, it has strong commercial potential. I can see it on book-stands everywhere, here in the UK and elsewhere in the English-speaking world.

Your opening is powerful, succinct and hard-hitting. We’re introduced to Marcus Green – dark, sinister, cold, ruthless, manipulative Marcus. I take issue with your describing him as a sociopath. Sociopathy is becoming commonplace in a world where people are desensitised to violence, fear and terror. It’s the reaction of humankind to a life that is increasingly without empathy, mercy, sympathy or compassion. This one feels like a psychopath to me, and a fully-fledged one at that.

Your evocative use of language and the descriptive narrative is superb. Enter Prison Officer Grimes, a seedy, sleazy, slob of a man. One can not only hear and see him in your words, one can smell him too – his “melange of rancid sweat and cheap tobacco.”

You employ dramatic tension well and the work is well-paced. We’re always left guessing, wanting to know more. Is that woman his mother? The question burns through the page.

I took it for granted that this work would be published that left me wondering about other possibilities for you. Certainly this piece has TV drama potential but I couldn’t see beyond that. I loved the wit, the ironic and deadpan humour of the Donna, Dexter and Roper trio. Do they have the strength of personality to work in your next novel? Dexter has Morse and Lewis, La Plante has Jane Tennison and Rankin has Rebus. I felt your writing was close in the same class, but I couldn’t see the potential in these characters without deepening and widening their personalities to give them stronger appeal.

Great work, Jared! I hope you make the ED this month. I’m a little surprised this work hasn’t been picked up already but I’ve read only the small sample here. Please let me know how you get on.

Wishing you every success,

Geoffrey

ExpatMaddie wrote 1504 days ago

Jared:
" Even at the age of six when he decided to kill his father..........."

This is the most effective hook I have ever seen, and it caught me! . By the time I had read the superbly written prologue to "Mummy's Boy," I was so hooked that I knew I was not going to stop reading until I ran out of text. When I had been reeled in as far as the end of the fourth chapter, all that is posted so far, I was: really disappointed there was no more, morbidly fascinated, appalled, informed, entertained, and totally creeped out ! Harper Collins, take note - this book is well-timed, a rattling great read and has the potential to fly off the bookshelves everywhere. I can easily see people in airports, train stations, and supermarkets parting with their money after reading just one page!

Experts now assess that 4% of the population are, in varying degrees, sociopaths: that is, totally self-serving people who can do absolutely anything to anyone else without feeling remorse, because they really have no conscience or real compassion. The fact that approximately 1 in every 25 people have no moral compass means that all of the rest of us stand a good chance of being lied to, bullied, cheated on, swindled, or otherwise harmed or exploited, or even killed, by one or more of these predatory and manipulative individuals.

The awful fact is - even very young kids can be sociopaths. The boys who tortured and killed defenceless toddler James Bulger, and the young brothers in foster care, who tormented, nearly bludgeoned to death, and then abandoned two of their schoolmates, are just the latest terrifying examples of this whom we have been reading about in the world's newspapers.

" Mummy's Boy" provides us with a stomach-turning, but very informative, insight into the mind of Marcus Green; an angel-faced prodigy from an educated and comfortable home, whom we see at the age of six, luring his father to his death because he can't get his own way. Unsuspected, because of his age, he literally gets away with cold-blooded murder and doesn't get caught until, aged eleven, he sets fire to his teacher's house and burns alive her two young daughters. Even once incarcerated, he is clever enough to play by the rules, manipulate the experts, and bide his time; knowing that he'll then be released and able to seek revenge against all those who, in his sick mind, have also offended him.

There is some wonderful writing in this book. The descriptions are direct, modern, evocative, and very informative. There is an exactness in the words used and an economical writing style that mirrors the character of "Mummy's Boy" himself...."Marcus liked to be precise." Scenes and characters are competently depicted with few words but highly effective word choices: The warder, Grimes, is ...."a man of no interest......his presence accompanied by " a melange of rancid sweat and cheap tobacco"; there are "leather shoes creaking on the tiled floor," in the prison; a visiting witness is .." Fragrant and light of foot. A woman. " Donna "relived the dream, like a scab she couldn't help picking.'

We move along quickly; and in between the scenes of a cunningly disguised Marcus, now at large and committing atrocities on those he despises, or proudly recounting to a trussed-up and terrified hostage, how, as an infant, he had stoned to death his helpless father instead of getting the help he expected, we meet Dexter and Donna who work for R &D Security, and who will soon be on his tail. Young Donna is no stranger to misfortune, having found her father when he committed suicide: An experience that caused her to have a mental breakdown. That more stress is coming for Donna is foreshadowed in the words, "The trouble with doors in the mind is they don't stay closed for long, always liable to swing open without warning."

There is finely drawn description of both appearance and personalities when we meet the staff of Mr Roper's security firm. Roper's personality is rather reminiscent of Higgins, in the 80's series "Magnum: " I once had a corporal in Benghazi....' . he begins as he launches into yet another boring anecdote to his long-suffering employees. Roper, '"misses nothing" trivial, but totally lacks insight into the dynamics of who holds the power in R &D Security, where ex high-ranking copper, Dexter, is the real boss.

Twenty-year old Donna and middle-aged Dexter are an interesting combination of characters. I expect the BBC could easily make a new mystery series about their adventures, after they have settled the hash of Marcus Green! I enjoyed reading the dialogue, laughed out loud at some of the humor.: "She buried her husband less than a year ago" says Dexter, appealling for Donna to cut Martha some slack, .. "Was he dead?"
comes the deadpan reply!

This is a wonderful read. Please God, don't let that woman be his mother! Tell us more! We all want more! Somebody publish it and quick!
Best wishes,
Maddie










Silver_Eyes wrote 1343 days ago

You know this already, but your writing is impeccable. Your storyline is enthralling and brings the reader in. Dark storyline and strong characters. This to me shouts New York Times Bestsellers List!!! Thank you for backing my novel, JHEVALIA, though that is not why I'm praising your work. I have only read the synopsis, but will certainly be back for more descriptive comments once I finish reading what you've posted. If you find the time, I would love some detailed comments about my book JHEVALIA, as I can see you are someone whose ink-stained prints I would love to follow in.

Thank you again for the backing and I look forward to hearing back from you.

Laura
"Jhevalia"

LeClerc wrote 1343 days ago

Hi Jared,
I'm not going to pretend that I have read, 'Mummy's Boy' because I have not. I am, however putting it on my watchlist and I will read it soon.

Read with interest HC editors advice, I know exactly how you feel about your 'first born', adverse comments are hard to take even when you know they are not malicious. Mind you, the critique is a typical bureaucratic sandwich of 'wow' - 'moan' - 'wow'. with a sprinkling of advice for good measure.
I have not been on this site long but I have learned that I must cast my net wide if I want to be published. Like you, I am now on my fourth book and I too think I have improved, I just have to get rid of the 'I know better than them' attitude I suppose.

Good fortune mon brave.

Phil.

Walden Carrington wrote 1358 days ago

Jared,
Mummy's Boy is a gripping and chilling account. Congratulations on reaching the editor's desk.

Jared wrote 1431 days ago

Harper Collins review now in, based on the section submitted to Autonomy and amounting to only 19,000 + words – several of the reviewer’s concerns would, in my view, have been answered by reading the full manuscript. For instance, the question of motivation on the part of Marcus. I don’t accept it is necessary for a reader to understand what, if anything, made Marcus the sociopath he evidently is. His reasons for the vendetta against a particular family group are explained at the end of the book, but he’s not a misunderstood person or a child abuse victim, he’s just evil. I discussed this aspect of his character with a HC editor recently – she was unable to accept the concept of evil without the underlying causes being set out. My background has afforded me many opportunities to meet people with sociopathic natures; there’s rarely understandable justification for the way they are. Some people are hard-wired differently, they’re just evil. I have met many such people in my working life.
The question of Donna’s complex nature is also bought out more fully at a later stage, but I accept the reviewer is basing an opinion on only four chapters. As for the ‘too much happening’ reference, my concern has always been that the main thrust of the action takes place later, in particularly the end chapters, and that the early chapters would not have sufficient dramatic thrust – just shows how wrong I was! Too much, then, ah well.
I’m happy with the review in broad terms. I can’t argue that the book still needs work, I’ll never be entirely happy with it, the curse of any writer. Mummy’s Boy was my first book, written 8 years ago, and I’ve written two books since then with another at an advanced stage. I feel I’m a better writer now than I was at the time this book was written, but as my ‘firstborn’ I have a particular regard for Mummy’s Boy and will look at it again with a fresh eye.

HarperCollins Wrote
Congratulations on making it to the top of the authonomy pool. Obviously you’re succeeding at an author’s top job: grabbing the reader’s attention. Psychological thrillers are tricky – you need to balance intriguing characters with unique plot hooks and engineer both with lightning-fast pacing, but they’re also really popular. Which is good, because it means there’s a big potential audience for your writing. Unfortunately, it also means that publishers are seeing more submissions than ever. So to get publishers’ attention, you need to set yourself apart. My suggestions for your book focus on plot, character definition and perspective, three aspects of the manuscript where I feel that some careful honing of Mummy’s Boy could pay off in a big way, helping you to increase that initial pull and keep readers hooked until the final pages.

I love a manuscript that starts with a bang, but I found that I was a little overwhelmed by the number of bangs I encountered in the first pages of your manuscript. Balancing two alternating points of view is always tough in terms of maintaining balance, pacing and tension, but when you’ve combined multiple storylines within each of those two perspectives, it begins to become taxing on the reader. For example, in Marcus’s storyline, we learn that something happened with his father, that he was involved in a previous triple murder, that he’s threatened an unidentified woman with murder, that something’s happening with a young girl named Celine, that somehow her aunt is involved, that something happened to his sister and that there’s someone named Clive involved. And then, of course, there’s a quite chilling Mummy moment. With all of this in the first 20,000 words, there are too many threads for the reader to balance. I wonder if there’s a way that you could develop Marcus’s storyline in a more straightforward, action-based arc that would string out the connections gradually for the reader. It sounds counter-intuitive, but introducing these twists and turns more organically would actually help with the tension and pacing of the book – drawing it out for the reader rather than weighting it all at the beginning.

While the twists and turns of a thriller are what grab attention, all of that action needs to be anchored in complicated, believable characters. There were moments for me where I felt uncertain about Donna’s character, in particular. She reminds me a little of Angie Gennaro or of Lisbeth Salander: she’s a tough female character operating on her own terms in a very male world. I find those qualities in her really appealing, but she makes decisions in the manuscript that don’t feel rooted in her character. For example, when she lashes out at Dexter, I recoiled a bit, not because I didn’t like what she was doing, but because I didn’t understand why she was doing it. Dexter is Donna’s protector – he helped her get her job and has taken her under his wing. And Donna seems to trust him, which feels like it might be a rarity for her. So why does she lash out at him? Small details like this one are what separate interesting characters from characters that really come to life on the page. Try to examine the motivations of your characters and make sure their actions reveal who they are in a way that feels natural. This isn’t to say that characters can’t surprise us – that would make for intensely boring reading! But they need to surprise in a way that feels believable. The same goes for Marcus. Because we see the story through his perspective, there’s no secret about who perpetrated the crime of Celine’s abduction, so the real mystery needs to lie in why Marcus is the way he is. Even though he’s a psychopath, he needs to be a believable psychopath with deeply rooted (if detestable) motivations.

I’d also suggest that you look carefully at the frame of each character’s perspective. Donna’s feels more natural to me than Marcus’s, but it’s key that you make decisions about how the perspectives will work and then be consistent about applying them. For example, in the opening scene you anchor us immediately in Marcus’s perspective with the line “Marcus was special. He’d always known it,” which is something I’d suggest only Marcus would know. But then you take us outside of his perspective with a line like “a wristwatch would have confirmed the accuracy of his estimate to almost the second.” It’s a very fine distinction, but one that will lead to a fuller sense of voice in the manuscript. Once you’ve decided about how limited your perspectives will be, then also take a look at the language you use in descriptive passages. If you’re going to be writing strictly within a character’s perspective, tailoring your description to match how they would see the world can be a really effective way to subtly develop a stronger sense of character.

I hope that you’ll find my comments helpful as you revise. You’ve certainly got a talent for the creepy – there were a few moments when Marcus absolutely made me shudder – and for those cliff-hanger moments, which will serve you well in this genre. Congratulations again on making the editor’s desk, and good luck with Mummy’s Boy.

donnaburgess wrote 1433 days ago

Wonderful sense of tension right from the beginning. Happily backed!

Donna Burgess
(Darklands)

Jared wrote 1434 days ago

Reviewer now left the site so comments retained as a quote.

Jared!!!! OH MY GOD! (Yes she is GUSHING)... okay that came out wrong - lol - *turns deeply pink*

I am honoured that you allowed me to read Mummy's Boy all the way through to the end. You are such a master craftsman of building tension. This literally is like a mummy. Cobweb thin layers wound tightly, one on top of the other, to create a completely mesmerising and *binding* tension, tale and dramatic climax! I got so scared at one point I had to stop reading. That's how well you caught me. And I write some pretty disturbing stuff myself - so that's really saying something about your ability to personify creepy!

This is chilling, in that is coherent, calculated, genius, and detached in execution. Marcus is the bad boy every women with blood pumping in her veins falls for. And we're all so horribly gullible aren't we? Jared, my horror! My utter horror at the nature of Marcus' relationship with his mother. I cannot imagine how she felt justified!

I was turning GREEN with nausea at the thought of it. But HOLY CRAP I was jumping out of my own skin at dripping bloody corpses with nails through their eyes in the pitch dark. When Donna is threatened by that Furry man, and then stalked, her hackles rising, I never ever guessed who the perpetrator was! I was preempting the ending. I thought I had it all figured out! OH MY GOD! The twists, the turns, they make Houdini look like a bumbling amateur! They are so fast, such a quick succession of twists at the end, I felt like I was stuck in front of an expert marksman with a Gatling gun!

*I had to remind myself to breathe* - which I thought was *automatic*- you stole my breath! Bet you've longed to hear me say that to you ? (pulls stupid face) - you take my breath away!

This is superb writing. Your metaphors had me drooling with envy at your raw talent! Your vocabulary - oh swoon! Bet you can talk anyone into doing anything! This is such a lovely showcase of excellent, truly excellent writing.

*Stands and applauds* - and LONGS for the encore!

Poppet

xxxx

dalar1 wrote 1444 days ago

A haunting and gritty piece of writing. Deliberately raw, yet eloquently spoken. This shows tremendous talent and a disturbing understanding of the criminal mind. Wonderful job. Good luck with this work.

D.E. LaRiviere (AKA Milo Saint) Six of One

theweed wrote 1454 days ago

Great opening and characterization. The lack of dialog and personal interaction puts the reader into the isolated mind of Marcus. When the victim looks through the window, the description is "...camera-obscured faces shown on television...", which seems a little clumsy. The swirls and bobbles in the glass is sufficient description.

The startling Chapter 1 end is very clever. I must wonder, though, if the rest of the book is going to be filled with more of the same. I realize that the storyline is about a killer, but, for myself, it is possible to have too much of a good thing. After reading about so much gore, I would think the reader would tire of it. Hopefully, you will include frequent respites from this, and more about what is going on around Marcus, instead of just in his head.

Good read.

theweed - "Where's The Ivy"

wespollet wrote 1455 days ago

Hi Jared, Your writing hooked when at the closing of the 1st chapter sadi, "Hello Mummey...I'm home" I'm looking forward to seeing this in publication soon. I back it and wish you well. Harold Alvin (ICON)Wesley

D. L. Stroupe wrote 1455 days ago

When I am at a bookstore and looking for something worth taking home with me, the first page is always the most important. If I can't get into a story, and quickly, I know I'll pass it up for something else. This is one I'd take home with me because you build, so quickly, not only a picture of Marcus, but of the people around him.

captin wow wrote 1456 days ago

yuppers.....this one makes me think....atleast...i think it does...okay im lost here...well guess i should read more then one page...but truely i did enjoy that first page!!!!!! or second page all i know was it was a good page!

stoatsnest wrote 1462 days ago

A page-turner

michi2 wrote 1462 days ago

This story is so eerie and fascinating in the way you describe his insanity. I am captivated and want to keep reading. The description of each of the characters with their eerie defects just adds dimension to the mood.
michelle
dummies for dating

michi2 wrote 1462 days ago

This story is so eerie and fascinating in the way you describe his insanity. I am captivated and want to keep reading. The description of each of the characters with their eerie defects just adds dimension to the mood.
michelle
dummies for dating

Kristen Stone wrote 1468 days ago

Well written but not my type of story. Too gruesome. Do we really need stories about such horrible people?

Stewed Rhubarb wrote 1475 days ago

You are a master of suspense. It is very filmic - I can see the rain falling on the leaves, Marcus lurking in the darkened doorway. I wish I could write like that. I'll be looking for this one in WHSmiths....

Well done.

Stewed Rhubarb

SusieGulick wrote 1477 days ago

Dear Jared, I love the intrigue you have created in your fiction thriller story. :) I like that you have a prologue to set the stage for what you are going to say in your story. It is a good read because you create interest by having short paragraphs (you may want to cut the longer ones in 2, though) & lots of dialogue, which makes me want to keep reading to find out what's going to happen next. I'm backing/commenting on your book to help it advance. Could you please return the favor by taking a moment to back/comment on my TWO books, "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not" & the unedited version? "Tell Me True Love Stories." Thanks, Susie :)

Oliver7942 wrote 1478 days ago

Congratulations Jared. Your accolades are well deserved.

Oliver/The Last Day of the Last Spring

Antiapollyon wrote 1478 days ago

I generally avoid this genre because of the profanity which I find absolutely unnecessary and do not enjoy, but I backed the book because the story is well-written and developed.

Regards,

Gene Wilenius - Solitude

Melanie Higgins Zysk wrote 1478 days ago

Great book and good luck. Melanie

Sandra Hamer wrote 1479 days ago

Congratulations on making the editor's desk!!!

Ruby Jo wrote 1479 days ago

I have read the first couple of chapters and it is very easy to read but it makes me feel too uncomfortable. I am needing a bit more assurance that someone's going to get this b*****d.

WG71 wrote 1479 days ago

This would be a movie I would close my eyes through the whole way through. It's intense and makes you want to stay up for days straight to get to the end.

Geoffrey_Mann wrote 1480 days ago

Jared

Very well done! There were moments…I’m sure you felt those too. Phew!

You had said that you were leaving Authonomy in March or that March would be your last time here, I hope that you stay around long enough to tell us what happens next. Whatever, I look forward to hearing your news as you make deserved progress towards publication. There seems to be scant information about those here whose books have sat on the Editor’s Desk in the past. Are you required to sign something akin to the Freemasons Oath? Do we need Dan Brown to explain? *laughing*

I’m delighted for you. Wishing you every success,

Geoffrey

AVRAHAMANOUCHI wrote 1480 days ago

Jared

Congratulations.

I am pleased that I helped elevating your book to stardom.

Maybe you could help my book.

Avraham Anouchi
The Hidden Scroll

Rhiannon65 wrote 1480 days ago

Congrats on your star Jared.

LRM wrote 1480 days ago

Yippee! Congratulations, Jared! I'm so excited for you!
~Linnette

Eileen Schuh wrote 1480 days ago

You did it! Way to go, Jared. All the best on the Editor's Desk.

Eileen Schuh Canadian Author FIREWALLS

nakiacap wrote 1480 days ago

I hope they pick this book up, well written

Brian Railsback wrote 1480 days ago

Scary, mesmerizing. We need to keep this one on the desk. Backed!

Diane60 wrote 1481 days ago

Jared,
Hmm don't kow what to say really. There are bits of other stories all the way through these 4 chapters. So far the narrative is very confusing. Could be a style thing or to do with the rest of the story. Your first chapter is the strongest of the 4 posted.
Not inviting me to want more...sorry

Diane

christie.landon wrote 1481 days ago

Mummy's Boy - Jared Conway

Conway is a writer! Mummy's Boy lays out the bread crumbs along a path you have no choice but to follow. This is a story so intriguing you must turn the page but written so convincingly that you almost dare not.

The stunning imagery of his technique places the reader alongside the characters to the extent that you are certain you smell the guard and feel the cold rain as it chills your bones.

Thumbs way up while checking the dark corners and looking over my shoulder!

drachat wrote 1481 days ago

Jared,

Wow, very powerful beginning; kind of grossed out at the end of the first chapter. I don't have much time to read much more and, quite honestly, don't need any more time. This is a great book, well-written and interesting.

I'm almost afraid to know if Mummy is actually Mummy and then I don't know if I'd be able to continue, the visual would be too disturbing.

I hope you get picked up!

Good Luck
Denise

Give me a day or so to add to the backed list, most of mine are newly added

Kidd1 wrote 1481 days ago

YOU deserve to have this published. It is one of the best reads I have experienced on this thread. Hope you get up to numbert one, and the Eds take notice. BACKED

Hope you will read, and comment on mine, and if you like it as well as I liked yours, back it.
Best of luck,
Robert
Golden Conspiracy

lizjrnm wrote 1481 days ago

Im backing you again today because you deserve to stay in top five!! BACKED with pleasure - good luck!

Liz
The Cheech Room

DMC wrote 1481 days ago

Jared

I thought I'd reshelve to try to keep this fine book on the Ed.

Good Luck!
David
Green Ore

Owen Quinn wrote 1481 days ago

Marcus has serious issues. he reminds me of ted Bundy with all his privelges and the King of the prom background. This makes him even more chilling. Instaed of a tortured soul, he is someone that has been born with evil inside him. His description of a blank wall was good. Noone takes notice of a wall until it falls down on them. Vivid imagery with natural flowing dialogue amid a well constructured story. Very Silence of the lambs in spirit, not in story, captivating.

TobyC wrote 1482 days ago

This is, indeed, a dark and disturbing glimpse into the mind of a psychopath. Grizzly. Stark. Cold. Sinister.

The setting compliments Marcus through its simplicity, the cold metal furniture, and white walls. Like Marcus, it's a confined space without appeal or worth. A psychopath, he's void of feelings and takes great pleasure in the mental process of the kill as much as the physical thrill. Although you haven't shown that yet, it's masterfully implied by the way he talks about playing games to be released and the statements he makes about his victims' suffering.

Here's a description of a psychopath:
***Imagine - if you can - not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken.

And pretend that the concept of responsibility is unknown to you, except as a burden others seem to accept without question, like gullible fools.

Now add to this strange fantasy the ability to conceal from other people that your psychological makeup is radically different from theirs. Since everyone simply assumes that conscience is universal among human beings, hiding the fact that you are conscience-free is nearly effortless.***

The description of Grimes is superb. He doesn't seem to have a redeemable quality until his assessment of Marcus makes it clear the man sees beyond the facade. That depth makes him brighter than his obese, clumsy oaf exterior suggests.

This, like Silence of the Lambs, is one that's too much for my reading pleasure, but there's a large population that will be thrilled to accept the challenge.

If I were heading to the Ed's desk, there's one thing that I'd consider fixing. When the people start to enter and leave his cell, it gets murky. Who enters? Who leaves? Why did some of these extra characters make an appearance? The extra guards seem pointless. If it were my story, I'd ax them and leave the three key players at the beginning.

I'll look forward to reading HCs thoughts about this story. Enjoy your success!

Toby

Giulietta Maria wrote 1482 days ago

This is chilling. An empty-hearted killer with the face of a young angel. Descriptions and characters are strong. Backed

Eileen Schuh wrote 1482 days ago

I am totally intrigued by the psychopath, the men and women without souls who live among us. How does society deal with them? Medicine treat them? The church view them? Inhuman. Untreatable. Unrepentant.

Great writing, Jared. Congrats on your ranking with MUMMY'S BOY. Good luck on the editor's desk!

Eileen Schuh Canadian Author FIREWALLS

Urbangal wrote 1482 days ago

Jared, I like what I see so far. I do not enjoy reading books online, BUT I am looking forward to reading the hard copy soon.

I was weaned on Stephen King and loved the Thomas Harris books (Silence of the Lambs, Hannibal, etc.) and yours looks, so far, to be on their level.

Good luck - although I'm not sure you need it.

Urbangal wrote 1482 days ago

Looks really interesting. I do love the creepy, crawly, sociopath genre of fiction.

Eveleen wrote 1482 days ago

Backed with pleasure.

moldywarp wrote 1482 days ago

Well, Jared, I am glad I kept reading. The prologue and chapter 1 made an intriguing start, but then you began to find your own voice.
Feisty female characters can be irritating, but Donna is saved by possessing a sense of humour, and being allowed to make mistakes. My God, she's almost human!
And it is the black comedy that marks out this book, along with an increasingly assured control of style.
Congratulations - keep writing.

Rosemary

Phyllis Burton wrote 1482 days ago

Hello Jared, I am not sure whether I have backed you before, and if I haven't, I cannot think how I could have missed this marvelously written story. It is powerful, unique and completely compelling and I can quite see how it is in the position it is in. Your writing and descriptive narrative is superb and brings the reader right into the horrifying action. This is very good and I have no hesitation in backing this and I hope that you remain in the top five. This is eminently publishable. SHELVED with pleasure. Good luck.

Phyllis
A Passing Storm (Would be grateful if you would look at this for me please)

lookinup wrote 1482 days ago

Mummy's boy is so life-like that it could be a true story. I think I liked that it gave me a look into the head of someone like this. Everything has a hook, from the pitch, to the 1st and 2nd chapters. Backed.

Catherine (The Golden Thread)

Sean Lamb wrote 1482 days ago

The opening chapter was chilling. It draws the reader in. Good luck with it.

Sean

gotiko wrote 1482 days ago

Jared,

The pitch clearly predicts excitement in the story. Your portayer of Marcus in chapter one shows his cold blooded nature. Backed. Good luck.

Gabriel

plip wrote 1482 days ago

Thought I had backed this a while ago, but perhaps not, so on my Shelf. The only negative thing about this work, apart from the M.C. is the fact that it has a prologue at all. Prologues seem to be something that makes it easier on writers, but which editors don't like. personal opinion only, of course.
phil

LRM wrote 1482 days ago

Jared, I rebacked your book hoping it will help you reach the editors desk again. Not sure how you got knocked out when you were holding steady for so long. I'll be watching to see what happens.
~LRM