Category Archives: Readers’ Interests

Operation Paperback: Talk about a worthy cause for both author and reader!

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I just signed up for Operation Paperback, and I’m going to give a bunch of my books to the women and men in uniform, serving our country overseas. This is what I call pay-it-forward in a big way. Imagine being able to entertain our troops as they defend our country. Join me and give them a little R&R–away from giving their all for us–inside a good book.

Here’s their site description and a link: http://www.operationpaperback.org/

“Operation Paperback is a non-profit organization incorporated in the State of Pennsylvania that collects gently used books nationwide and sends them to American troops overseas, as well as veterans and military families here at home. Since 1999, we have shipped over 1.9 million books to locations around the globe.

“Our service members and their families make sacrifices every day for our country. It takes so little to let them know that they are appreciated.  When you donate to Operation Paperback, you will let America’s military  know that you appreciate their service and their sacrifices.”

EPublishing Radio Interview

I was just interviewed about my writing career as well as ePublishing by nationally known radio personality and voice talent, Mike Lamb. The half-hour segment will air Sunday, March 31, between 1:00 and 2pm ET on WJML radio:  http://www.WJML.com

Listen to the interview here: https://s3.amazonaws.com/moneyroom/033013-moneyroomshow-hour2.mp3

The actual interview starts at 7:10 into the audio recording.

Check it out!

But, if you don’t get a chance, you can catch it anytime afterwards on a podcast on Mike’s Internet radio website, at: www.MoneyRoom.com, and later I’ll post it right here!

E Z Knight Versus Your Favorite Fast Food Customer Service Engineer.

(With Russian beauty Zoya & E Z’s golden retriever Jazzy Brass)
Excerpt from KNIGHT’S RANSOM, near the end of Chapter 12
© 2012 by Gordon A Kessler
Available at:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007F08MU8

It was 1:00 p.m., and Zoya, Jazzy Brass and I were getting hungry. While looking for an In-N-Out Burger or maybe a Del Taco, I checked my cell phone video to see if I’d gotten anything useful from just prior to our shootout. It was nothing but blurred gun barrels — completely useless.

We couldn’t find any of the more popular fast-food chain restaurants — usually you find them everywhere you look in SoCal. Finally Zoya pulled into one I hadn’t tried before, a Burger Bender. We ordered three cheeseburgers, fries and drinks. Jazzy loved chicken nuggets, but they weren’t on the menu. She’d have to make due. I promised her next time we’d find a Wendy’s, and she could have it her way. It was hard telling when she’d get back on her normal diet of dry dog food and an occasional spoon of pumpkin or slice of apple.

I gave Zoya a twenty-dollar bill and she paid the kid at the window. He didn’t look like a high school student, had to be at least twenty, hair spiked, with body piercings and tattoos. Jada, my young friend back at the marina, has a similar look. But I soon found out that she wears it with a hell of a lot more personality.

The young man, obviously a career fast-food customer-service engineer, dumped the change into Zoya’s hands.

Don’t they teach kids to count back change anymore?

I figured by the looks of him, he’d have a heck of a time counting back more than a nickel anyway.

He gave us the drinks.

They’d overflown their lids, and soda was dripping down the sides of the cups.

We asked for napkins.

He stuck a wad of them out the window.

A minute later, he handed us the bag of food.

We had to ask for straws.

He passed us half a dozen for two drinks.

We had to ask for ketchup.

He handed us mayonnaise instead.

I told him we wanted ketchup not mayonnaise.

He gave us a fistful, without reply.

We asked if there was salt in the bag.

He said, “No.”

We waited. Ten seconds later, I asked, “Well, can we have some?”

He didn’t say anything, but grabbed a handful of the tiny salt packets and stuck them out the window. At least a half dozen fell to the driveway beside the car door.

Zoya cupped her hands to receive the rest. He’d passed us enough salt to season every potato in Idaho, let alone two orders of French fries.

At that point, I considered pulling Zoya’s Mac 10 out from under the seat, pointing it at him and informing him that I was a trained assassin and had snuffed more people than he had stainless steel rings on his face and dick — there were at least twenty on his face alone.

Instead, I swallowed the venom surging in my throat, and we thanked him.

Then…and this is the kicker — what do you think the little shit said in return?

Come on, guess?

He said, “No problem.”

I don’t know that you’ve noticed, but my day began two popcorn farts less than great, and it was turning out three root canals and a kidney stone more than terrible.

I was stressed. I’d had a bad day. My head was about to explode from the pressure building inside. My good nature was stretched across my face like a two-bit condom over a pineapple — let’s say it developed a few holes.

To start with, first thing this morning, I get the finger from an old woman. That alone would ruin many a man’s day. But then I discover my goddaughter has been kidnapped by people who want me dead; a boat blows up that was supposed to have been mine; I find a good friend beaten into hamburger by guys trying to kill me; I get shot at; I nearly fall off a cliff; I have to kick a big bald guy’s ass; and then, to top it off, I only get half a BJ before finding out I’m being setup to be murdered.

Okay, that was just this morning. Next, the goombas who took a pot-shot at me come back and riddle my beautiful classic muscle car full of holes. I have to leave it in a heap of smashed up, smoldering metal because the cops are coming and, if I stick around, they’ll arrest me, and I’ll go back to prison.

So far today, I’d done nothing wrong — so far.

And then the kid at the fast-food window says, “No problem,” in response to our polite “thank you” without so much as a glance at us.

*  *  *

I stretch over Jazzy and Zoya to the little convertible’s driver side, get a foothold on the center console, and then reach into the drive-thru window. Jazzy and Zoya lean out of my way.

With my fists full of the server’s uniform shirt, I pull him to me and our noses touch.

“All right, booger-eater; listen to me this one time.” I start low and slow. “Your job is to wait on us; provide us with courteous service and a quality meal,” I say, my voice coming out louder, words faster. “We; your customers — the reason you even have a job — say ‘thank you.‘ And how do you answer? With a smile and a respectful ‘you’re welcome — thank you for your business. Please come again,’ right?”

My eyes are bugging, spittle comes out unintentionally with my elevated words.

“No-o. You say,” I whine with a sneer in exaggerated imitation, “‘No problem,’ as if you feel the need to tell me it wasn’t too damn far out of your way for you to do the job you’re being paid to do —”

I take a deep breath, “— instead of what you’d be doing if we hadn’t come to your little window: sitting on your dumb ass, atop a box of frozen beef and sawdust patties, listening to gangster rap while popping pimples with one hand and rubbing your balls like they’re Aladdin’s lamp and you’re wishing you had something more than a three-inch pecker with the other.

No problem? You say no problem to your neighbor when you pull a turd out of his toilet that got stuck sideways and clogged it up. You say no problem when you stop and fix a stranger’s flat tire in the rain, even though you’re going to be late for work. You say no problem when the guy with no arms standing beside you at the urinal asks you to shake the dew off his lily and put it back in his pants for him — that’s when you say, no freaking problem!”

I’m glaring at him. He’s gaping back, as are Zoya, Jazzy, the burger joint employees and the few customers who can see me from the inside.

“No problem?” I ask quietly, but with a ragged edge. My next words come out from between my barred teeth. “Of course it was no damn problem, you little freak!”

The kid is in shock. He finally stutters, “Yu-you’re…wu-welcome — s-sir!”

“There. Was that so goddamn hard?”

I let him go, push off and slip back into my seat without looking at him. I answer, “No problem.”

Zoya, with her heavy Russian accent, says, “Have … nice … day!” and we pull away.

*  *  *

 I took a deep breath and within five minutes I was feeling pretty good.

KNIGHT’S LATE TRAIN has arrived! (and KNIGHT’S REPORTS is on it’s caboose)


KNIGHT’S LATE TRAIN—an Action/Adventure Thriller Novel

With E Z Knight, if a mountain gets in your way, you don’t go around it, you blow it up.

From flying a helicopter through a blinding mountain blizzard to running down a blazing train to Hell, E Z Knight is tested more than ever in Knight’s Late Train — and somewhere in between he discovers an easy way to join the Mile High Club.

When Doc Knight and his train go missing in a Colorado blizzard, E Z must brave the storm to find his father. In the process, he discovers Doc was involved in something more than conducting trains through the mountains. A hazardous materials train is loaded with highly toxic and explosive gas with a yield that could rival the Hiroshima A-bomb, as well as a yellowcake Betty Crocker wouldn’t even think about making. The Thundertrain is headed for Denver, and the madman at the controls is bent on derailing the hazmat freight cars where they will cause the very highest body count. Hundreds of thousands of lives are at stake.

E Z enlists the help of sexy railroad engineer Rillie Bee Wilde, and finds out she’s as feral as her name. She takes him higher than he could ever reach in their helicopter. Soon, they find out who wins when hundreds of tons of locomotive meet a fragile whirlybird and a battle against two dozen mercenaries is waged in the dangerous Slaughterhouse Train Yard.

With the Thundertrain only minutes from killing tens of thousands of innocent citizens, E Z must decide whether to save his father and children, or to try to stop a team of mercenaries from blowing the “Mile High City” to Hell.
The only way to do both is to move a mountain.

Knight’s Late Train is an episode of the standalone novels of ”The E Z Knight Reports” series; a sexy, humorous and irreverent series as well as a somewhat realistic and poignant look at the darker side of life, crime and the human condition.

With a modern-day, ramped up “The Rockford Files”/”Magnum PI” feel, a Jack Bauer-capable hero and a “24” pace, this series consists of standalone, page-thrumming novels.

“The E Z Knight Reports” has a special section on the author’s website and blog (gordonkessler.com) with info on each of the books, E Z Knight, Jazzy Brass and the “Knight Girls”. You’ll also find information about the author and his other novels and works.

If you enjoy best-selling action/adventure thriller authors like Don Winslow and Clive Cussler, as well as some of the best thrillers in eBooks by indie authors like John Locke and JA Konrath, you’ll love Knight’s Big Easy!

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KNIGHT’S REPORTS — Box Set, Your Three Favorite E Z Knight Books Bundled (The E Z Knight Reporst)

Dog Park for Toddlers? How about crossing the track during the Indie 500?

It happened again today. A small child was hurt.

There are a lot of really great young parents out there. They love their children dearly and only want what’s the very best for them. Sometimes they don’t think things through before they do them, deciding, “Oh, how much fun it would be to take Junior to …” Some folks who haven’t been to a dog park have no idea what goes on there.

Well, here’s your warning, good-intentioned but inexperienced parents: what goes on at a dog park is utter chaos!

What? Chaos at a dog park? Someone should do something! Someone should enforce order so that all dogs walk, not run; lick, not play bite; romp and play like kiddies and not run amok and wrestle like … well, like — dogs!

If you’ve been to a dog park, you know that most of the animals are out there just having a great time. Even my sweet Jazzy Brass, one of the most pleasant dogs you’ll ever meet, gets a little nuts. It’s the dogs’ place to be dogs, to do what dogs do. They want to chase each other, play bite and wrestle. There are small dogs, and huge dogs, and as long as the “alpha” male or female doesn’t come out in them, the time spent in the park can be a blast for both dogs and their caregivers.

But, if you’ve visited one of these fun places more than a couple of times, you’ve most likely seen some little accidents, sometimes not so little. Adults have even been known to get mowed down by dogs being dogs. These dogs don’t watch where they’re running, they’re just enjoying the chaos at the time. A person can easily get hurt, if they’re not keeping an eye out. The canines are excited, they’re letting off steam. You’re the cheerleader when you’re at the park, and your beloved companion is the player. If you’re a smart cheerleader, you don’t go onto the playing field in the middle of a game without being sure you won’t get trampled.

As soon as I saw it, I knew there would be trouble. A young mother with two small dogs and a medium-size one on leashes had entered the park’s main gate with a toddler in her arms. Hmmm. Obviously, she was thinking of how much fun was about to be had, but not considering she was leading three primed and ready rugby players onto the field of a very active game in progress. Within five seconds, she was down on the large concrete entryway, and she had dropped her little girl face first onto the hard surface, as well.

What could I do except run to her and try to keep the excited pack of dogs that quickly gathered away from mother and screaming child while they attempted to recover and find their legs?

Damn it! What a shame for the little girl who ended up with a bloody chin and a huge knot on her forehead. Accidents happen. This young mother certainly would have never risked her child’s wellbeing had she actually considered the danger.

It’s one of my pet peeves and this is a warning to others, old and young, short and tall. Dog parks are for dogs to play and have fun — to be dogs. It’s not a place for an overly aggressive dog. It’s not a place for elderly who can’t move out of the way of a large pack running at full speed. It’s not a place for a toddler even with close supervision or in a stroller. Sure, it’d be fun to see Junior reacting to all the nice little puppies. How about keeping Junior outside the fence? Here’s an idea; what about taking Junior to a pet store (the puppy mills that supply them are a whole other story)? Even better, take Junior to see all the really cute doggies and kitties at the local animal shelter!

Please stop and think. Don’t bring your small child inside the gate of any dog park. And, when you go with your best friend and constant companion, keep on your toes and be ready for a great time!

KNIGHT’S LATE TRAIN Book Cover Contest!

KNIGHT’S LATE TRAIN

Time for another:

BOOK COVER CONTEST!

If you pick the most popular book cover from the selection below, you’ll be entered to win a box of Christopher Elbow Artisan Chocolates.

And the winner is?
And the winner is?

So which eBook cover for my next men’s action/adventure thriller novel best draws you in and makes you want to read the story? To be eligible to win, make your selection and post it in a comment at the bottom of this page (or by email) by July 13, 2012. The winner will be announced on this website on Saturday, July 14.

Click on the images below to see larger, more detailed slides:

What do you think?

Is #1 too hokey looking?

Is #2 too overdone with the fire?

Is #3 unrealistic and way over the top with the cherry-red-hot snowblower stuck on the front end?

Please give me your selection, thoughts and comments by July 13, 2012 in order to be eligible to win a box of some really delicious Christopher Elbow Artisan Chocolates!

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