Book Jacket

 

rank 1236
word count 116149
date submitted 12.04.2010
date updated 16.04.2014
genres: Fiction, Thriller, Crime
classification: universal
complete

Dead Reckoning

Philip John

It's for the country. You are our man, Charles. You know how these things are done. Getting rid of people, we mean.

 

Wealthy businessman Charles du Randt is persuaded by friends in very high places to rid Britain of a number of troublesome individuals, who are seemingly beyond the law. To carry out the task he recruits a former soldier, Marc Dampier, who must first 'disappear' himself, to ensure absolute secrecy. One by one the targeted individuals meet untimely deaths, apparently from heart attacks. Only one person, a former girlfriend of Marc Dampier, suspects that something untoward is going on but her efforts to get at the truth are blocked at every turn. This is hardly surprising, given who was behind the original conspiracy.

None of this could possibly happen, you tell yourself. Not in a country like Britain. Not with people in such high places. But as the story takes a totally unexpected turn, you think again. Is it really so impossible?

( Two more thrillers with the same cast of characters and dramatic twists at the end of each story have been written but will be saved for another day)

 
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tags

betrayal, corruption, crime, death, england, france, parliament, police, political intrigue, politics, revenge, scotland yard, switzerland

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121 comments

 

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carol jefferies wrote 3 days ago

Hi Philip,

Dead Reckoning

This is a return read.

The story begins with spitfire dialogue to grab the reader's attention, and together with the action it works. Charles swerving in a car at high speed inspires envy. Who hasn't ever wanted to do this?

The complex character of the protagonist, Charles du Randt, is 'shown' by his behaviour. Retired from the military tells a lot. He is also an assertive risk-taker, of regular habits, yet secretive, and amazingly wealthy. I felt a bit sorry for him for having no family. I would have liked to have known what happened to end his marriage to know more about him. Given his comfortable lifestyle I was surprised to learn that he was only 48! No wonder he is looking out for a challenge. The mention of this challenge drew me in acting as a hook and compelling me to read more. There is further intrigue when Charles uses a public telephone box rather than his own mobile phone.

The dialogue between the four friends is interesting and informative. Common-place dialogue helps portray the scene with realism. What is thrilling is that these men, discussing important national problems, wield both wealth and power. They propose to take the law into their own hands and plan to bring serious crime offenders down. Suspense is maintained increasing tension as it is not clear what their plans are. Even though Charles is dubious about 'the plan' he refuses to back out now, as it ruin his ego to do so after agreeing to it.

The writing is clear, concise and thought-provoking. So much work and energy has gone into this book and it promises to be a thrilling read.

Good luck with it.

Carol Jefferies

The Witch of Fleet Street
Chase of a Ewe-lamb

Orson Paddock wrote 24 days ago

I think you could condense the reasons these gentlemen want to take action into a few lines. As an example;

"We're not vigilantes, Charles. It's just, well...unfortunately we have a system that fails us sometimes."
"Damned ironic really, seeing we created the system, but nothing lasts forever, does it?"
"It has become increasingly clear to us, what with our own thugs becoming more aware of the Law, and these new bods coming in from Europe, we need need a back-up system."
"Something discreet but ruthlessly efficient, if you understand our drift.
"That's where we thought you might like to come in."

I am aware you have progressed onto other stories in the series but the premise here is strong and I found the paragraphs from 'They had long since...' sound like authorial justification and commentary.

IMO you don't need them.

Good luck with it.

Sheena Macleod wrote 125 days ago

Dead Reckoning by Philip John
Genre thriller/ crime
Great title and good pitches.
. I am commenting as I read.

Edit- Thank you sir(,)" the driver replied.
I visualised Charles as a James Bond like character.
An increase in crime, of a particular sort by people who could evade the system - the MR Bigs. The newspapers have named them and challenged the police to respond by arresting them. They seem untouchable.

Edit-The media had not been slow to (remove the extra not)
The Lord Chief Justice is a fool, and best avoided for appeal cases.
The work needs a careful read through for edits, otherwise this is the start of a good read. Full of intrigue, tension and action.

edit-view that something (remove simply) had to be done.

Four men decide to take action.

Edit - he thought he could cope (with ) anything that came his way.
The plan is put into action and Charles takes a lead role in ensuring that the plan is well executed.

Good luck with this.

Sheena
Carnival of Lies

DJ-Gargoyle Chronicles wrote 132 days ago

Dead Reckoning

You know, at first I wondered what the hell the first section of the prologue was for or about. I enjoyed the flow of the second section and was still wondering, but the 3rd section brought me back. Do you need that first bit? It is dramatic, but the second bit about the man is inviting. I would put the 1st bit second, but that’s just me. After I got the link I was back in. I was wondering if there was a little too much exposition on the courts, this could be handled quicker and the secret club – give us their dialogue (even if they remain faceless). Show us their anger and plotting. I loved the line ‘not here thank you’ really showed their colours brilliantly. Of course this is only my opinion, I don’t mean to sound harsh, it just needs a little tightening to get it on a roll like you did with the first three bits.

Having said all that, intriguing premise and I must read on to see what the plan is. I have to say that the second chapter was far cleaner, more structured and had a definite feel about itself (if that makes sense.) A couple of spots could have used dialogue, but you’ve built the man of mystery thing well here. I think you like your MC very much and know him well.

Deepening mystery in the third chapter, slow on the action, but that suits what you have written so far, so who am I to complain. I feel you are close to a real moment, but I’m not quite sure what that is. Augh and again you leave us hanging about the plot… now you see, this time you definitely did not need a conversation, well done. The money and the dead bit was also tantalising. I feel at this point you have really got going, but it did take a while, even for a patient man like me. Have you had other such comments? In the meantime, some thoughts for you per chapter below. It did get cleaner as I read on, but a couple of points from the first trailed throughout. Feel free to ignore any or all of this, I’m no expert.

:DJ

Chapter 1:
…more business than pleasure(,) but he enjoyed good food… - characters in ( ) are considered missing. Actually, you could lose the BUT and keep the two sentences. More concise that way and reads the same. {there are a few of these, your choice on them though, you style} Do a word count on BUT and its usage as a sentence starter. Nice for effect, but the tally is mounting
…affair(,) but… {a few of these too – no choice here I’m afraid… picky bastard, aren’t I}
…bad day now – NOW is redundant here
The media had not been not slow… - ??? One too many NOTs, or should this be – the media had been quick?
Muddle-headed
They finally agreed on the outline - Once the outline had been agreed… this is a repeat

Chapter 2:
The change of POV to Tul for one paragraph is interesting. If we had seen the conversation this would have worked better. Some don’t like quick POV changes… I’m on the fence
Mrs Tul convo needs quotation marks

Chapter 3:
X-ray
…crowd(,) which throngs…
Is district judge a title – should it be District Judge?
Again – the dialogue between Dampier and the judge should read more of a dialogue, gives the characters character, and you’ve missed a perfect opportunity with I assume an important character… You seem to do this a bit as if you are rushing through unimportant sections. If they are so unimportant, remove them. Just a thought.
What have they got you for – LOL

Darius Stransky wrote 141 days ago

Chapter five next.
On a personal note let me just say that I am a lover of a good read. Something that keeps pulling the reader along.
This piece of work is not good it is brilliant!
The whole thing reads true, in plot and character.
Although I have only read so far I know that towards the end I will get that sinking feeling in my stomach;
You know the one? When you have followed the character to the end and there are maybe twenty or so pages left and you put off reading them just so as you can spend more time with the book.
I am not a 'gushing' sort of person but credit where credit's due.
Darius
How about a 'friend' swap to get your work noticed by others when I'm online and someone checks my page out? Leave it with you.

Darius Stransky wrote 143 days ago

I must have enjoyed my first few chapters because this is my second review (the first one clattered off into the ether) - probably now residing in the trunk of Charles's Bentley!
To continue; fast-paced, great characters and I have backed it to be published now. RIGHT NOW.

If this was available then it would be on my actual bookshelf.
Best of luck
Darius

OrvisEd wrote 148 days ago

Great pitch, good structure, amazing intrigue, and a very well written plot. I cannot see any faults with your writing, although being new to the writing community. The action and adventure almost seems realistic, as well as the conspiracy written throughout. You have clearly invested an enormous amount of time and hard work into this.
It's easy to read, and that is important with complex plots, I can't wait to finish reading it! =]

High stars and backed.

OrvisEd
The Last Deity

Callin wrote 152 days ago

If this was on paper I'd buy it. Yes, I write ebooks but, I'm only complying with the market's demands, I love to write and love paper books, that's me.

I've read thousands of books, looked at thousands more and know a good story when I see one.

I've written something 'dissimilar' to the this. Professional executions made to look like accidents or illness, "Death on the NHS" in case you're interested and no, it's not about hospitals, on the contrary.

I didn't read all the chapters, I didn't need to. I like your brisk, well-paced style. You don't waste words, just like myself.I do hope this comes out on paper, even if you self-publish.

Best of luck, Philip.

Backed as promised all the stars too.

T. J. Edison.

skin wrote 163 days ago

Hi Philip
Firstly, thanks for taking the time and backing 'Prendergast'.
I have taken a look at 'Dead Reckoning'. I loved the premise, it is the kind of book I like to read. An intriguing plot which I did not quite get to grips with until chapter 3. On the nit picking front I see some of the faults I have made myself. The purists will tell you the words 'but' and 'and' are conjunctions and should be avoided to start sentences. I do not always agree but I do think you could look to eliminate some of them. I think punctuation needs work. Lots of one word , two word, short sentences when use of commas would aid flow for reader. To entice a publisher and a prospective purchaser the first chapter is critical. It has to grab you, hook you to read on. Dead Reckoning does have some subtle intrique but I wonder if it is enough.
Anyhow just my thoughts, my comments are to encourage , not discourage. I have decided to back Dead Reckoning, not because you backed Prendergast but because it is well structured, my kind of story. The punctuation does need some work to get it past a publisher.
Ian

Chris 1 wrote 252 days ago

This is an intriguing idea. A conspiracy of millionaires, all with links to 'high places', decide to take the law into their own hands and clean the world of 'undesirables'. It's fascistic in some ways and scary but provides some kind of fictitious insight into the conspiracy theories such as GB75, a similar organisation led by David Stirling, one of the founders of the SAS. Not sure whether they bumped anyone off but they were one of many 'anti-left' organisations set up in the 70s to combat the militancy of the trade unions.

I actually like the method of telling the story, it gives it a kind of documentary feel like some American noir films, similar, say, to the narration in - you may remember - the narration at certain points of that James Cagney classic 'The Roaring Twenties' or Stanley Kubrick's 'The Killing' (robbery of a racetrack) which also gave the documentary feel.

Backed

Neville wrote 306 days ago

Dead Reckoning.
By Philip John.


I liked the secrecy of the four as they meet every Thursday of the month to put the world to rights.
They have the right connections as well from what I gathered from the first chapter.
We know a little of Charles du Randt, but nothing of the other three except that they are all able to call upon influential people to further their cause.
I like the way that it’s written, you don’t hang about but get on with the story...no filler here!
An interesting read so far and I’m only just into it so I’ll return to it later.
For me it’s worthy of a high star rating...It’s got it!
I look forward to seeing the book cover!

‘Thank you, sir[]’ the driver replied. (Comma required after ‘sir’).
Tall. Slim. Fairish hair with only the... (Tall, slim, fairish hair with only the...)

Neville.

One Off, Sir!
The secrets of the Forest (Series) - Cosmos 501.
The Secrets of the Forest (Series) - The Time Zone.

Tanya2 wrote 314 days ago

This is a really good story, well written and with great characters. I've read three chapters so far, and I shall come back for more. I notice that this has just been re-submitted and I've seen some of the previous comments suggesting improvements. So far I have to say I'm impressed with what I've read. I think it's a possible winner!

Juliet B Madison wrote 318 days ago

Great start, I am keen to find out what happens next. Charles appears to be a complex character with an air of mystery and that looks good for this genre. I am getting back to grips with autho but I will read more soon but think you have a winner here.

Juliet B Madison wrote 318 days ago

Great start, I am keen to find out what happens next. Charles appears to be a complex character with an air of mystery and tha looks good for this genre. I am getting back to grips with autho but I will read more soon but think you have a winner here.

Seringapatam wrote 490 days ago

I like the sharpness in this. So sharp but flowing well. Thats a talent in my eyes. One thing I would say and its only me being selfish. when you have finished writing a chapter go back over it but take your writing head off and put your reader head on...You may change a few tiny bits. I love it though and I think this is a hidden gem. Well done.
Sean

Cathy Hardy wrote 504 days ago

Very crisp, neat and easy to follow. Love Charles, almost fancy him myself from the description :) Also love the pitch. You are on my watch list and I look forward to reading. Very intriguing!

Cathy

Etienne Hanratty wrote 526 days ago

I really enjoyed the first chapter. I don't like du Randt as a man, but I can't deny he's a good character. Can see this doing quite well. Will be sure to read more.

Starchaser3000 wrote 560 days ago

This is more serious stuff. I am impressed that you are proficient in writing both comedy and action thriller. I like the funny story about the Russians better, but this is also well written as well. I can tell you put a lot of thought into this one for sure.

Alegria101 wrote 561 days ago

Dear Philip,
I read chapter one,which offers a good insight into your excellent writing skills. Your characters and believable (if a bit mysterious) and your plot seems to have a good base, i can't wait to see it unfold.
One tiny observation i'd love to share with you, but please feel free to toss it if you don't agree.
When Charlie gets Mark out of jail and listens to him relate past adventures, i found myself wanting to know what those adventures were. This is also an excellent spot and opportunity to insert some dialogue to break up the monotone of the narrative. Perhaps we will come to learn about their life in later chapters, but i think the reader could use some distraction as early as the first chapter. I hope this is of some help, or maybe not. In either case, Dead Reckoning is starred and shelved, with pleasure.

Abby Vandiver wrote 582 days ago

This is a good story. It starts out slow and not such a page turner but does hold your interest in spite of the use of much narrative. Your dialogue makes it exciting though. Good job.

Abby

Maevesleibhin wrote 629 days ago

Philip,
A group of elders get together and conclude that the criminal justice system is not doing its job, so they decide to take matters into their own hands. The ring leader elects a lieutenant who goes around offing unsavory individuals.
I have read to chapter 18.
This book does not work for me, I am afraid. Although it is sometimes exciting, and although I will admit that the format does provide a certain satisfaction in the wish fulfillment department, it does not hold together for me.
I have two basic issues.
The first one is stylistic. There is a lot of summarizing in the book. It starts at the very first chapter "Charles du Randt was a creature of habit." and "In many ways the group which had met for lunch that day was no different from any other dark suited group of men in their forties and fifties." And goes on. From chapter 2 "His army background served him in very good stead. As well as offering several useful contacts and sources for what he needed, he knew that he could draw on his years of experience, to rework his plans again and again." From Chapter 8 "Nottingham Prison, like most English jails, is not the kind of place you would choose to spend time in." From chapter 12 "The organisation was already large but was still growing as the government gave it more and more responsibilities." It goes on.
In part, this has to do with your choice of storytelling. As you have to present one baddie after another, you are forced to introduce them somehow. So you have to summarize a background story for each. But you do this for your hero as well, so it is more of a style than anything else.
I think that it would be a very big challenge to do this story without summarizing backgrounds, but I think the book would be much better if you did. You would either have to conduct the assassinations without really letting us know what the victims had done in quite so much detail, or you would have to put the information in dialogue. Another, longer option, is to follow these baddies around for enough time for us to become acquainted with them directly, rather than through summary.
My second issue has to do with the plot mechanism. It places all the fault of the country's demise on the shoulder's of the judiciary, which you demonize, and then creates a wish fulfillment mechanism where the bad guys are offed one after the other. As a plot mechanism, it leaves me wanting. By the time I stopped at chapter 18, I felt that the book was going to be a series of episodes where a bad guy is presented, we get a bio on his background, and then he is offed in a creative way. Next. There is no promise of a plot arch here.
As I said before, there is something entertaining and satisfying about it, in a Law & Order kind of way. However, after one or two incidences of this, the thrill wears off.
This second issue is much harder to correct, because it is the whole basis of the novel, unless you somehow manage to create an overriding plot. You hint at something like this with the suspicious ex-girlfriend police woman, and with the meetings of what I am calling the "elders". It seems evident that at one point things will go terribly badly and they will put Charles out to dry. Maybe if you brought in the lady detective sooner, this would give me the arch I am looking for (having written this I suddenly get the feeling that this is precisely what would happen if I read on)
If this is the case, bringing in her character earlier would help keep me focused.
As with all negative crits, this is just my opinion. You know what you are doing, so stick to it. In any case, I wish you best of luck with it.
Maeve

arne wrote 649 days ago

Just finished the first chapter and am interested in where this is going. I like these kind of stories whith tough guy characters and will read in buddy.
Arne
Pimps, Beggars, and Bones

yahweh wrote 656 days ago

I was reading steadily right up to the section when the people of high influence have their meeting and the narrative goes off on the subject of their discussions, then i lost a bit of interest. My advice here would be weave the subjects of their discussions into the narrative about the current meeting their having, but in short, snappy pieces.

Would you, or anyone reading this, be kind enough to have a read of the novel I’m currently writing, and uploading to authonomy, called ‘A Very English Affair’ and leave a comment, back it, add to a watchlist or whatever you feel. Thanks.

Rob Lawrence wrote 698 days ago

Hi Phil,
I was looking forward to rereading your book but nothing seemed to have moved on in respect of improving puctuation, sentence structure etc., which is a great shame. The premise of the story really is great and it is a shame its telling is marred by technicalities. I would really encourage you to iron these out so that the story can come to the fore.
Rob Lawrence. 'To Set a Mouse Running'

Kenneth Edward Lim wrote 698 days ago

Philip,
What a premise to work on, a millionaire drawn to the lure of action reminiscent of old army days.. He gets friends together as part of his scheme, all his preparations making for captivating read. Your narrative comes in a successiuon of detailed paragraphs full of backstory needed to add impetus toi the action. Your dialoge is energetic and concise. Thanbk you so much for the delightful read.

Kenneth Edward Lim
The North Korean.

M.T.H wrote 698 days ago

Just finished Chapter One. This is a very polished piece of work, you have clearly been working on it for a long time.
I'll continue to read more as I'm interested in where you're taking us.

Malcolm

Dianna Lanser wrote 700 days ago

Hi Philip,

I love a fast-paced, Bourne Supremacy type story and I got that sense right at the very beginning with the ditch ‘em scenario and with the telephone box scene. You did well to start your story with some action.

I also liked that you “showed” Charles du Randt’s character and I loved reading about his wealth and his exclusive set of friends. The premise of this group’s purpose is clearly understood. In fact, as I read, I felt it was a little drawn out. By the end of chapter one I was more than ready for some edge-of-the-seat action.

But that doesn’t mean that you do not have a wonderful way with words. No. You are a very talented writer - able to clearly create an imaginable scene and evoke emotion and interest within your reader. Your characters are well-defined and understood. Perhaps it was the knowledge of your ability that I wanted to get into the deed of rescuing the English society more quickly.

Chapter two adds some interest and by chapter three I’m hooked with acquisition of Marc Dampier. Good job. I know I only read the tip of the ice berg, but none-the-less, I’m impressed that you have completed your novel. That in itself speaks of tenacity and giftedness. Six stars!

Dianna Lanser
Nothing But The Blood

I hope you don’t mind me pointing out a couple easy fixes I found in chapter one.

You do a little head hopping in the telephone box scene. First in the driver’s thoughts and then in Mr. Charles‘

“Aim not just (at) the man in the street, who knew only too well…”

Camac wrote 719 days ago

Hi Philip,

I write as someone who reads Crime and Thriller novels for pleasure. I've read guidebooks on how to write for these genres. My comments are based on a read of your first three chapters.

I think you have put a lot of work into the opening chapters and you have the bones of an excellent thriller. One of the first questions those who judge fiction (agents and editors) ask themselves is whether the story starts in the right place. With thrillers you have to hit the ground running and for me your story starts at Chapter 3 at the courthouse. (Others may disagree, of course). I believe we see too much of du Randt early on, learn too much about a wealthy man's lifestyle and servant. This slows the forward momentum, and can go in later as backstory. Conflict gets the reader's interest and it is lacking in these chapters. Why not have du Randt and Marc disagree strongly over something (conflict) so that there is doubt in the readers mind and they want to read on to see how it is resolved. Similarly with the gang of four: I would have one disagree with the others (conflict) and want to withdraw from the group. But he knows too much ... and so he becomes the killer's first victim. And it's important to show serious differences - not just mention them in passing.

I hope something here will be of use to you. I plan to return to read more.

Camac Johnson
Untouchable

Jehmka wrote 723 days ago

I’m slow at reviews, slow at picking out problems with structure. I’m quick however when it comes to nitpicking details. So, that’s what I’m doing here… nitpicking.

The opening scene (losing the trailing car) reads every bit like a prologue. But I like that you didn’t call it that. I think a lot of readers (myself included) are put off immediately by the word ‘prologue.’ Better to sneak it in in the guise of the chapter opening, as you’ve done.

Now some nitpicking…
“Any other day(comma - no and) he would probably…”
“He made a point of lunching…” This paragraph contains a lot of short phrases (fragments) that could be combined into real sentences. This may be intentional, but it will have some readers stopping and taking note of it. If you intend this as a point of style, I think (my big fat-headed opinion, in other words) it’s better to work it in more gradually – let the reader first get caught up in the story.
“…if his business (was) to flourish(comma) as it invariably did.”
“Work over, he then relaxed (em-dash) usually in the comfort…” The em-dash – is a great tool for joining loose, related fragments to a sentence when a comma doesn’t quite cut it. “Usually in the comfort of his own home.” just plain does not hold up on its own.

“One ex(hyphen)wife, who collected her (alimony, I think, is the actual legal term) and gave him no trouble.”

“At forty(hyphen)eight(comma) Charles was fit…”

“No(no hyphen here) one knew just how rich…”

See what I mean? I’m a nitpicker above all else… and proud of it.  Useful or not (perhaps annoying), my intention is to be helpful.

Good luck with Dead Reckoning.

Rob Lawrence wrote 728 days ago

Phil,
I believe in honest crits; not fluffy one designed to get reciprical platitudes. The story is good and I enjoyed it. I think there are problems with things like sentence structure, punctuation which mar the flow of the story. In one or two instances the odd word seemed to jar.
I think the story is strong enough and good enough to deserve these purely technical wrinkles to be ironed out.
As I said, a good read; well done. And apologies for the delay in getting the read done.

Karamak wrote 730 days ago

You have nailed it ! Excellent read
Karamak Faking it in France

philip john wrote 748 days ago

Dear Fran,

Very many thanks for these comments, which are very helpful. I take your criticisms very much to heart. I tried to bring out, amongst other things, some of the contradictions and hypocrisy which go to make up modern political life but might not have got it quite right. As well as writing a common or garden thriller along the way, of course. Thank you anyway for giving the book a try.

Best wishes

Philip

Dear Philip

As I have been reading this, I have been hardly aware that it was uploaded here. Feels like a book. Not my usual read. But I am thoroughly enjoying it. Four chapters in, I am interested in what is happening and looking forward to more. I like the set up: the characters feel real and very well portrayed. The scenes are well drawn and the pace is good. There are enough questions in my mind, so that I am happy to keep reading.

The action and dialogue feel much tighter and more convincing than the theorising. The fourth section of chapter 1, where the old boy net is discussing law and order, feels a bit heavy and there seems to be a central contradiction. If the Chief Justice so keen on "soft" option like community service, why does there also seem to be a policy of exemplary sentencing which is filling up lots of newly built prisons? Perhaps it is your intention to set up a contradiction which exposes your private club as a bunch of extremists. Even so, it might be more convincing to suggest that current judicial policy is soft, that lots of prisons are emptying because the new politicos believe in leniency....I have a feeling these paragraphs could be made leaner.

That said, this is a refreshingly good read, full of interest and straightforward, lively writing. I am enjoying it very much.

All the best

Fran Macilvey, "Trapped" :-))

FRAN MACILVEY wrote 748 days ago

Dear Philip

As I have been reading this, I have been hardly aware that it was uploaded here. Feels like a book. Not my usual read. But I am thoroughly enjoying it. Four chapters in, I am interested in what is happening and looking forward to more. I like the set up: the characters feel real and very well portrayed. The scenes are well drawn and the pace is good. There are enough questions in my mind, so that I am happy to keep reading.

The action and dialogue feel much tighter and more convincing than the theorising. The fourth section of chapter 1, where the old boy net is discussing law and order, feels a bit heavy and there seems to be a central contradiction. If the Chief Justice so keen on "soft" option like community service, why does there also seem to be a policy of exemplary sentencing which is filling up lots of newly built prisons? Perhaps it is your intention to set up a contradiction which exposes your private club as a bunch of extremists. Even so, it might be more convincing to suggest that current judicial policy is soft, that lots of prisons are emptying because the new politicos believe in leniency....I have a feeling these paragraphs could be made leaner.

That said, this is a refreshingly good read, full of interest and straightforward, lively writing. I am enjoying it very much.

All the best

Fran Macilvey, "Trapped" :-))

philip john wrote 758 days ago

Dear Philip,
Really? This is a book that I would by and recommend to anyone! Such true feelings that I feel about my government! And The most amazing way is that your words tell the story! Highly rated and a place on my shelf as soon as I can! Excelllent and yeah am reading more despite wanting to read other. WEll done
Josphine
Notime goes bye



Dear Josphine,

Many thanks for these very generous remarks. I have taken a quick peek at Notime goes bye and logged it for future reading. I can see straight away that it is beautifully written.

Best wishes

Philip John

Atieno wrote 758 days ago

Dear Philip,
Really? This is a book that I would by and recommend to anyone! Such true feelings that I feel about my government! And The most amazing way is that your words tell the story! Highly rated and a place on my shelf as soon as I can! Excelllent and yeah am reading more despite wanting to read other. WEll done
Josphine
Notime goes bye

jack hudson wrote 762 days ago

Will comment more later. Still reading and enjoying, especially your character development. For your information, "Warm-Up Kills" is now complete on the site.

jack hudson wrote 763 days ago

Arresting first chapter. I will read on. What is their plan? I'm intrigued.

Nick Cullen wrote 774 days ago

P.S I've just noticed a red arrow beside the book. Clearly the website is broken. Mods get the techies on the case quick as something is clearly wrong.

Nick Cullen wrote 774 days ago

I like to leave the editing to the editors. So, from a reader's perspective....clearly you're joking putting this up? Come on, own up! This has been published and is on many 'actual' shelves in bookshops right? You're taunting us aren't you? If the answers to my questions are incredulously 'NO' then you've either kept this excellent piece of work locked away, hidden from view or...or I'm gonna hang up my boots now because this is as good as it gets and is a couple of leagues above lots of things I've read. Your style is fantastic and the storyline is great. I'm hooked. I can't wait til the trouble maker appears. In fact, this is going straight onto my shelf.
Seriously, seriously good work here. It's when you read something like this you think "Damn, I really have to start writing better!"

Nick Cullen
Ghost Estate.

Fabrice Stuyvesant wrote 1267 days ago

Great prose, lucid and fast moving. I like the efficient use of words. I'd say strenghten the cliff hangers at end of chapters though. Best of luck with this! Fabrice, Club Wars

child wrote 1271 days ago

Dead Reckoning - This is a thriller with a great deal of class.
The writing is crisp, almost brusque, but with a hint of old world charm and good manners thrown in. Charles du Randt has the tiniest flicker of the unsavoury about him and Marc Dampier, a man unable to function properly without a cause to stimulate an adrenalin rush, carries more than a latent air of violence. Both characters are well drawn and believable as is the dialogue between them. The pace is not fast but somehow the author kept me reading far further than I had intended, in fact through five chapters. The sixth, I believe is where the action really gets going. I shall come back to read further wanting to know what the unexpected turn in the plot promised in the pitch is. A blooming good read.

Child - Atramentus Speaks

Colin Normanshaw wrote 1272 days ago

Nicely written. A good pace to start this book, with plenty of hooks to keep the reader interested. Dialogue is sharp, and we are neatly drawn into Charles du Randt's life without really knowing its hidden secrets. Backed with pleasure. Colin

Richard J. Dean Jr. wrote 1276 days ago

Thank you for your support for Twin Fates! I came by to check out your novel and found it to be quite enjoyable. Well-written, with clear, realistic dialogue. I can see this as a movie one day. Great setting.
~Richard
Twin Fates

marywood18 wrote 1276 days ago

Intrigue and suspense and a promise of a lot more to come. Well done. You have such a fantastic premise here and one that promises a cracking read. I would agree with Cheryl Kaye Tardiff, let your characters tell the story rather that yourself. By you telling it, you head hop, giving the thoughts of Charles and then the driver and then the men in the group. Better that we know this through charles's point of view. Using third person you can have other characters take the point of view as long as you have a break in between each change so the reader expects it. This is not a criticism, just advice as this work so deserves showcasing at its best, the material is fresh and the story line is gripping, promises of a best seller. There are some tips on my blog, the address is on my profile, but there are also a lot of 'how to' books out there which could help you with this. Good luck. Thank you for backing mine and yours is going right now to my bookshelf, which often leads to more backing from my friends on here as we tend to review what the others have done. Not by any arrangement between us, but it is something I have noticed in my news feeds, and know I often pick my next lot of books from what they have read. Hope this happens for you. love Mary

SRFire wrote 1281 days ago

This is intriguing. We have plenty to hook us from chapter 1 to 2. Backed with pleasure, Sana

Bocri wrote 1289 days ago

Instant immersion. The first line of Dead Reckoning pulls the reader in and makes him part of the action right from the start. The writing is crisp, almost curt but certainly business-like in a literary sense for this genre; unembellished, economic, not quite laconic and to the point. It does what it says on the tin and does not disappoint. No glitches. BACKED. Robert Davidson. The Tuzla Run

Cheryl Kaye Tardif wrote 1293 days ago

This story has a lot of potential, which is why I'm going to offer some advice.

It started off good, with action, dialogue and intrigue. After the first scene, though, you slipped into too much tell and not enough show. This makes a reader want to scroll down for a break of whitespace. Try adding more dialogue (internal or actual) to break up the narrative, especially when in Charles's POV. Let HIM tell the story. :-)

Cheryl Kaye Tardif,
bestselling suspense author
http://www.cherylktardif.com
All the best

Gingernut wrote 1298 days ago

one of the best things ive read for a long time

Gingernut

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