After the first black supervisor in a Texas oil refinery is murdered, there’s a damning confession—but the witness will never testify. A tale of murder, sex, racial conflict, and labor strife on the Texas Gulf Coast in 1980.
What Seems True was inspired by a true crime that took place in Port Arthur, Texas, in 1979, a crime for which the shooter has never been convicted or even tried. I was there when a real-life Texas Ranger came to a Texaco oil refinery’s asphalt plant to investigate the murder of the plant’s first African-American supervisor. While this outcome seems an injustice that cannot be corrected, what continues to intrigue the author is the psychological aspects of the case: the motives of the people involved and the nature of their relationships. What Seems True uses a similar fictional murder and situation to examine those relationships and motives—which may not be as clear cut as they seem at first blush. The novel is also a story about the fraught relationships of workers—white and black, male and female—in a gritty industrial setting on the Texas Gulf Coast in 1980, a time and place where the 1964 Civils Rights Act still provided minorities and women only a glimmer of hope for workplace equality.
The Safecracker, a legal thriller, now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble
New lawyer Patricia Egan has a safecracker client she doesn’t want and a housemate she doesn’t like, but all three face a common enemy when they separately stumble onto a plot to defraud a group of Carolina cities developing a visionary alternative energy project—and end up in the crosshairs of the conspirators.
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Sergeant Johnson shoved the door open. Tepid air redolent of fish sauce and incense washed out over them. Staring into the gloom, all Bell could make out was a dark corridor lit by a single naked bulb in a distant stairwell.
“Move, move,” ran through his mind, but “ah, fuck!” short-circuited the signal. Johnson was almost to the stairs before the message reached his feet. His first day on patrol and here he was following some Black Panther who probably despised his newbie white ass into a dark building looking for a fucking fugitive or something.
—From QL 4. Click here to read more.