Bestselling author Kathy Bennett served twenty-nine years with the Los Angeles Police Department – eight as a civilian employee and twenty-one years as a sworn police officer. While most of her career was spent in a patrol car, she’s also been a Firearms Instructor at the LAPD Academy, a crime analyst in the “War Room,” a Field Training Officer, a Senior Lead Officer, and worked undercover in various assignments. Kathy was honored to be named Officer of the Year in 1997. Law enforcement personnel laud Kathy's authentic stories of crime and suspense for 'getting it right.' Learn more about Kathy and her books at her website.
You'd think with it being Halloween that I'd have some amazing craft item or horror story to share. But the truth of the matter is that while I love to do crafts, I haven't had time to do many projects in recent years—unless you want to count my books. My books aren't horror stories, but some of the situations the characters find themselves in certainly make their lives miserable.
Many of the characters I've created in my books are awfully crafty, but not in the paper mâché, or quilting kind of way. You might think of criminals as being crafty to get away with their crimes, but what about their victims, the good guys and gals? Can they be crafty, too?
They certainly can – especially if the circumstances are right. For example, in A Deadly Blessing, the first book in my Detective Maddie Divine suspense series, brainiac teenager Tiffany Truesdale, the daughter of the governor of California, wants to live the unmonitored and carefree life of her friends. Tiffany crafts a plan to have her attractive friends enlist the help of her bodyguards to find a fictitious dropped diamond ring. The ruse works; Tiffany is able to slip away from the bodyguards who constantly hover over her. Rejoining her friends at a wild party, Tiffany is kidnapped by a gangster pimp who turns young girls out to be prostitutes. Fortunately, her captor, Drejohn, doesn't follow politics and therefore doesn't realize he's got the 'first daughter' of California in his clutches.
Tiffany knows it's only a matter of time before she's made to have sex for money. She begins formulating a plan to get away. Her first big goal…find a phone. When she's left alone in a pool changing room, she goes through clothing, looking for a phone. She's discovered by Tank, one of Drejohn's most deadly cohorts. Tank is like an animal going after Tiffany who locks herself in a bathroom. By the end of the incident, thanks to some convincing self-inflicted injuries and a carefully crafted story made up by Tiffany, Drejohn is looking at his pal Tank as a possible traitor.
Later in the story, Tiffany needs to save one of her fellow abductees from being forced to put on a live sex show. With the clock ticking down, Tiffany makes her way secretly through the house, gathering items that she thinks might come in handy in a rescue mission of her friend. She later uses nail polish remover and discarded tabloid magazines to start a fire that not only gets her friend temporarily off the hook, but affords relief to some of the other captive girls as well.
When Tiffany realizes her kidnapping is breaking news in the media, she has to devise a way to disable the televisions in the compound. She doesn't want Drejohn to know he's holding the daughter of the governor. Enlisting the aid of her friend, the young helper is almost hanged while kicking over the compound's satellite dish, but the mission is accomplished. The small victory doesn't matter because the two girls are hustled into a car to go 'work' in Los Angeles. Luckily, the cops have a crafty plan of their own to rescue the girls.
Obviously, I don't want to give away how the story turns out, but you can see that being clever isn't limited to crooks. Victims and cops can also be crafty—when they have to be.
I didn't intend this blog post to be a Halloween horror story, but if you're the parent of a young daughter, beware…after peeking into Tiffany's adventure, you may have a nightmare or two tonight.
A Deadly Denial
Someone is killing cops in Los Angeles. Detective Maddie Divine is assigned to the elite Robbery Homicide Division to join the hunt for the cop killer. With officers being murdered every few days, the suspect list grows longer as secrets, deceit, and denials are uncovered.
Maddie Divine – Maddie's keeping a secret and if her co-workers knew, they'd put her in a padded cell and give her a rubber gun. Meanwhile, her former partner, Cash McCool, has some explaining to do. But will she accept his justification for his actions?
Cash McCool – He and Maddie were on the brink of a relationship. What drove him away, and how does he react when he and Maddie are assigned to track the cop killer together?
Rex Rango – Why can't this newlywed cop say no to a female deputy chief and stay out of her bed? He thinks he's gotten away with his betrayal, but he's wrong.
Jill Rango – Two months after her wedding, personal and professional scandals have Jill fighting to hang on to her husband and her badge. When one of her secrets is exposed, she's suddenly on the short-list for a murder rap.
Holly Banks – Married to an older man, Holly has manipulated men all her life. As her list of lies increase, the LAPD's suspicions grow that Holly is involved in something a lot more serious than artful string-pulling. Holly says she's innocent…but is she telling the truth?
Edison Watts – The early-morning radio 'shock-jock' fans the flames of alleged police corruption, while protecting his reputation, king-sized ego, and secrets of his own. Will his whole empire be lost as a result of one drunken mistake?
Jacqueline Girrard – After turning in a key piece of incriminating evidence in a murder investigation, the statuesque stunner sets her sights on Maddie's partner. Will the easy-going detective jeopardize the investigation by falling victim to Jacqueline's charms?