Starting on 11/28 WWK presents original short stories by some of our authors. Here's our lineup:

11/28 Debra H. Goldstein, "Thanksgiving in Moderation"

12/5 Annette Dashofy, "Las Posadas--A New Mexico Christmas"

12/12 Warren Bull, "The Thanksgiving War"

12/19 KM Rockwood, "The Gift of Peace"

12/26 Paula Gail Benson, "The Lost Week of the Year"

If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at

November Interviews
11/6 Barbara Ross, Nogged Off
11/13 Lena Gregory, Scone Cold Killer
11/20 Lois Winston, Handmade Ho-Ho Homicide
11/27 V. M Burns, Bookmarked For Murder

Saturday Guest Bloggers:
11/2 V. M. Burns
11/9 Heather Redmond
11/16 Arlene Kay

WWK Bloggers: 11/23 Kait Carson


Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Paula Gail Benson's story "Wisest, Swiftest, Kindest" appears in Love in the Lowcountry an anthology by the Lowcountry Romance Writers available 11/5 in e-book and print format on Amazon. The anthology includes fourteen stories all based in Charleston, South Carolina.

Lyrical Press will publish Kaye George's Vintage Sweets mystery series. The first book, Revenge Is Sweet, will be released in March. Look for the interview here on 3/11.

Shari Randall will be writing again for St. Martin's, perhaps under a pseudonym. We look forward to reading Shari's Ice Cream Shop Mystery series debuting next year. Congratulations, Shari!

Susan Van Kirk's A Death At Tippett Pond was released on June 15th. Read E. B. Davis's interview with Susan.

KM Rockwood's "Frozen Daiquiris" appears in The Best Laid Plans: 21 Stories of Mystery & Suspense, edited by Judy Penz Sheluk. The anthology was released on June 18th.

Fishy Business anthology authors include KM Rockwood, Debra Goldstein, and James M. Jackson. This volume was edited by Linda Rodriguez.

Please read Margaret S. Hamilton and Debra Goldstein's short stories (don't ask about their modus operandi) in a new anthology, Cooked To Death Vol. IV: Cold Cut Files.

Warren Bull's Abraham Lincoln: Seldom Told Stories was released. It is available at: GoRead: or at Amazon:

Grace Topping's mystery, Staging is Murder was released April 30. It is now also available in audio.


Friday, October 19, 2018

Breakout by Richard Stark, A Review by Warren Bull

Breakout by Richard Stark, A Review by Warren Bull

Image by Carles Rabada at Upsplash

Like most people, I suppose, I have wondered what it would be like to have a secret identity. Batman poses as millionaire, Bruce Wayne, and Superman, pretends to be reporter Clark Kent.  Richard Stark is, of course, the pen name of Donald Westlake. Westlake wrote some of the funniest crime novels in existence. His characters show how uncommon common sense is with an amazing level of ineptitude. 
Richard Stark’s character, Parker, is the exact opposite. Parker is a master criminal with a steady girlfriend, Claire, but without any other ties in the world. He will work with a crew as long as he needs a crew and no longer. He is a professional at crime, unemotional, relentless, zeroed in on whatever needs to get done and God help you if you betray him.
Stark writes about Parker with an economy of language that echoes the intensity of the character. He starts many, if not all, of the Parker novels with “when,” and drops the reader into the midst of the action. Breakout starts with – When the alarm went off…  It is a botched warehouse robbery. The local getaway driver decided to break into an office in the warehouse, contrary to the carefully conceived plan. That set off an alarm, which alerted the police. The driver took off in the only vehicle so the rest of the crew had to run. Parker was spotted and ended up in jail.
For a master criminal, who stays anonymous and under the radar, this is a major problem. His fingerprints show up from an earlier time when he was incarcerated and had to kill a guard to escape. 
For Parker, the only solution is to break out of jail. The rest of the novel is a "how done it" Parker has to find men in jail who can help him escape, to find people outside who can help him flee the scene and to find a way to get back to where he started from. For added interest, Parker as part of recruiting a crew agreed to go on a local heist, which involves breaking into and then back out of a heavily guarded location.
Stark’s sparsely elegant prose is a joy to read. If I had a desire to get into the criminal world, Parker’s travails would convince me to stay out of it.
I give this book my highest recommendation.


Margaret Turkevich said...

on my list, Warren. Thanks for the fine recommendation.

Kait said...

Interesting - writing with economy of language is so difficult. Sounds like it will be a joy to read.

Gloria Alden said...

Warren, I'm looking forward to reading this, too.

KM Rockwood said...

Don Westlake is one of my favorite authors. I haven't been as fond of the Richard Stark novels but have read some of them.