A Historical Retrospective of The Bridge of Deaths

TBOD-eventbanner

Today, we’ll take a look back at the history behind M.C.V. Egan’s The Bridge of Deaths.

HISTORICAL RETROSPECTIVE

September 5, 1939: United States proclaims its neutrality; German troops cross the Vistula River in Poland.

The war has hit Poland, with the 10th and 14th German armies crossing the Vistula River, eventually breaking through the Polish lines. As they advance, German troops encounter hundreds of massacred German residents of Polish cities, atrocities which were committed by the fleeing Polish troops. German troops continue to advance and, upon entering Piotrkow, set fire to the Jewish district.

Despite what appears to be a rapidly-escalating conflict, President Roosevelt steadfastly maintains the United States’ neutrality.

TBOD-frontcoverA link to The Bridge of Deaths: The vast majority of Americans did not want anything to do with the European conflict. There were, however, propaganda movements to encourage Americans to think differently, the most powerful of which is found at the British Security Coordination (BSC). The BSC, interestingly, was housed in 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, the same building as Standard Oil, the company where G-AESY victims Samuel Simonton and C.A. Castillo (the author’s grandfather), worked. Among the spies coming out of the BSC were people who left great names in other fields after the war, amongst them authors Roald Dahl and Ian Fleming. (Source) In The Bridge of Deaths, the protagonists explore how, in 1939, individuals with an ability to travel were recruited as spies for the British government.

ABOUT THE BRIDGE OF DEATHS

“M.C.V. Egan twists truth and fiction until you question your perceptions…it is a story of real love, triumph and search for self.” - Beckah Boyd @ The Truthful Tarot

5 out of 5 stars:  “An unusual yet much recommended read.” - Midwest Book Review

On August 15th, 1939, an English passenger plane from British Airways Ltd. crashed in Danish waters between the towns of Nykøbing Falster and Vordingborg. There were five casualties reported and one survivor. Just two weeks before, Hitler invaded Poland.

With the world at the brink of war, the manner in which this incident was investigated left much open to doubt. The jurisdiction battle between the two towns and the newly formed Danish secret police created an atmosphere of intrigue and distrust.

The Bridge of Deaths is a love story and a mystery. Fictional characters travel through the world of past life regressions and information acquired from psychics as well as archives and historical sources to solve “one of those mysteries that never get solved.” Based on true events and real people, The Bridge of Deaths is the culmination of 18 years of sifting through conventional and unconventional sources in Denmark, England, Mexico and the United States. The story finds a way to help the reader feel that s/he is also sifting through data and forming their own conclusions.

Cross The Bridge of Deaths into 1939, and dive into cold Danish waters to uncover the secrets of the G-AESY.

Get the revised 75th anniversary of The Bridge of Deaths on Amazon in eBook and paperback.

Don’t forget to stop back again on Thursday to check out my review of The Bridge of Deaths. Until then, click here to enter to win a $75 Amazon Gift Card!

Posted in Promote an Author | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Author Interview: M.C.V. Egan

TBOD-eventbanner

I have a thing about history. And I’ve read a lot of information about World War II, mainly because of the personal connection I feel to that time. It’s really hard not to feel a connection when three members of your family get the dreaded telegram saying “We regret to inform you…”

When the opportunity arose to be a part of The Bridge of Deaths event that aligns with the 75th anniversary of World War II, I jumped at the chance. Throughout the week, I’ll be posting additional insights into this wonderful book, starting with my interview with M.C.V. Egan herself:

MCVEgan-authorphotoIs The Bridge of Deaths really a culmination of 2 decades of research? Why are you so interested in WW II History?

Yes, at least a good eighteen years of research. I was so clueless when I began to dig around the plane crash that killed my grandfather in 1939 so I guess someone with a better historical background would have never taken that long.

I am embarrassed to admit that I had to look up almost every incident I came across even something as common knowledge as The Munich Pact.

I know I had to have studied it at some point in school or university but to be honest I know I did fail history at least once.

Why are you releasing a revised edition and what is different from the original?

When I released the original in 2011 I was so afraid that people would dispute some of the files I used that I carefully and meticulously added footnotes for EVERYTHING, over 200.

To my surprise some people loved that, mainly lawyers! But it felt like awkward reading for some, and it was understandable, especially in the e-book format as the footnotes can be distracting. In the revised version I added the necessary footnotes to the narrative and got rid of all of them. I also summarized two parts that were loaded with information and detail and added them to the back as appendices for the more curious readers.

The book is formatted in a very user friendly way so the reader can go from one chapter to the other or to the appendices.

To give it a more up to date touch, as the book takes place in 2010. I added an epilogue in the summer of 2012.

The new cover has the image of my grandfather’s watch which is part of the story.

What new information have you come across since the first edition was released in 2011?

I actually found and connected with Mr. Simonton’s daughter, here in south Florida. I also found that Anthony Crossley was very linked to the famous spy Anthony Blunt which opens a whole other can of worms! I have also found more data on Mr.  Wicks which makes him seem like privy to information that perhaps saved his life because other who did far less than he were hung for treason.

What is so important about the blue dye?

To answer this I am going to borrow what a young British engineer used to explain it to me. A tea drinker with a favorite mug would have a mug with inside stains from the tea after using it many times and just rinsing it with water; (I guess he likes his tea with no sugar or lemon) , the more tea the darker the stain.

Aircraft fuel even to this day is categorized with a special dye in the 1930s it was a blue dye, it may or may not be the case today.

The argument that the fire started from constant seeping of fuel cannot be accurate (even if it did become part of official findings) because there was no blue stain, there is no way sea water especially for such a short time, less than 24 hours would have removed the stain accumulated after presumably several years of seepage.

Mr. Willans – those in positions of power worked very hard to discredit him. Why? Is it because they knew he was on the right track, and they didn’t want the truth to come out? Which smacks of serious collusion between several major and minor people involved in this investigation.

YES! I am obsessed with Mr. Willans on two notes, one because years ago one of the people who held the watch said to me “there is a man named Williams, he knows the story, find him before he dies.”  And because of the documented data that just scrams he was on the right track and was not acknowledged.

I am by nature very skeptical and not keen on conspiracies but I feel that yes this was very conspiratorial and that it was not limited to one power.

I did find a trail for Willans I will find it for you scan and have Anne send it to you.

What made you decide to look into the plane crash to begin with? Did someone in the family think there was something suspicious about the crash?

We were told it was sabotage. Especially by my step-grandfather who was living in London at the time and also working for Standard Oil of New Jersey. When I came in contact with Anthon y Crossley’s grand-daughter she too had been raised with the story as sabotage.

The letter which is an image in the book, although poor quality from my grandfather’s boos in 1939 just a few days later calling it “One of those mysteries that will never be solved” is also the type of thing that make you question WHY?

You stated in a previous interview that the Danish government does not intend to release the information when the time limit expires. Why?

When I was finally officially allowed to sit in a Police station and work with files I was not allowed to photocopy. The head of the department who had a background in law and had worked for the equivalent of the FBI or CIA I think in Denmark they are one and the same told me, you will never see that file. He was very nice and not threatening he was simply stating a fact as he knew it to be.

Do you feel there is a cover-up going on?

I am certain there was a cover up, there are too many discrepancies I do not want to give in full detail for spoilers, but the corpses, the plane and the discrepancies in the archival materials. Also a huge thing is that not just Willans but others requested an addendum to the report stating they DID NOT agree with the findings.

Over 200 footnotes? So this is not a novel, or is it?

Oh yes it is a novel. It has fictional elements so it must be categorized as such. The characters that sift through the data are fictional even if two are strongly based on real people; one of whom is me!

I also used very “unorthodox” ways to research such as psychics and past life regressions; not my own, and that to many is fiction.

How did you use psychics and past lives?

I have two watches, one that was my grandfather’s and another sent to us by British Airways LTD. The use of psychometry is not that scoffed at, I mean the FBI has used it, so I thought, Why not? It was just amazing, with no photos or previous knowledge a psychic started describing the bridge and another the lettering on the wing of the plane.

The most shocking was that all described to a T another of the men who died for the second watch, no spoiler! I won’t tell you which but it was uncanny. There were five people gifted in psychometry who did this for me.

The individual who had the long past life regressions, five in total has asked to remain anonymous, but I was allowed to sit in and take notes, they were also recorded but the quality is horrible which is a shame because just like Maggie in the book, I did ‘go under’ and slept through one of them.

Stop back tomorrow to learn more about the history surrounding The Bridge of Deaths. While you’re waiting, click here to enter to win a $75 Amazon Gift Card!

Posted in Promote an Author | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Promote an Author Tuesday – Annie Knox

I’ve decided to start a new feature for the blog, where I introduce you to an author that I think you will like or has been recommended to me. Please be patient, as this is a work in progress. If there is something else that you want to see in this feature, please let me know!

Groomed Cover(1)Annie Knox is releasing her second book in her Pet Boutique series, Groomed for Murder, today. Based on this description, I can’t wait to start reading:

Love is in the air in Merryville, MN, where Izzy McHale is busy planning a wedding for her friend and mentor Ingrid as well a doggie wedding for two of Trendy Tails’s most devoted customers. But Izzy’s second floor neighbor crashes Ingrid’s wedding, stone cold dead, and Izzy’s beloved Aunt Dolly is caught holding the smoking gun. Now the Trendy Tails crew has to figure out what their mysterious neighbor was doing in Merryville and who would want him dead.

I read the first one; it was GREAT! I will post a review of it the new one as soon as I finish reading it! She also writes as a romantic mystery series set in  late Georgian England as Wendy Lyn Watson, so more books for you to read!

Amazon: Groomed for Murder

Barnes & Noble: Groomed for Murder 

Here is her website for her Pet Boutique series: Annie Knox

You can check out the romantic mysteries at her website: Wendy Lyn Watson

Follow her on Facebook: Wendy Lyn Watson and Annie Knox 

I always enjoy talking to her; she is a wonderful lady! So what are you waiting for? Go…GO NOW! There are mysteries to solve!

Posted in Promote an Author | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Ask the Author

questionsAfter the release of Who Killed the Ghost in the Library? questions started coming in from my readers. I love to engage with my readers, so I opened my Facebook page up for questions.  You asked; I answered:

SPOILER ALERT: This Q&A contains plot information for my books. If you haven’t read them all, I recommend coming back once you’re done! 

Do you like blowing things up in your books because it’s illegal in real life?

You can blame my son for that. When I did NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in November 2010, he kept asking me to blow things up, ram a truck into a house (he wanted the truck to go all the way THROUGH the house; we compromised and only went as far as the kitchen), and he wanted a car chase. This is the story Good Night, Sleep Tight, Don’t Let the Stalkers Bite.

I’d like to know where Randy’s (The Ghost Writer story) money comes from.

So would I! I need a loan to pay some bills! Seriously, I don’t know. But I’m sure we’ll find out in the next book, Who Killed the Ghost Writer?

Was Agatha so enamored with Stanley that she was willing to live with a dead man than to live her own life, or was she just stuck in the past?

I believe you hit the nail on the head, so to speak. She and Stanley had been together before he got married, and they stayed together for a few years even after that. I mean, Stanley IV and Cecilia were the children of their affair. Agatha gave him the children Amelia couldn’t, and she felt that entitled her to be the mistress of the manor, not Amelia. But Stanley truly loved his wife, and he was not about to walk away from his family to be with Agatha, and I think that drove her over the edge. He dies, Amelia signs the house over to Agatha and leaves town, and suddenly, Agatha has everything that she ever wanted.

What were her reasons for staying there?

She had what she wanted; she became mistress of the manor, and she had Stanley, even if he was a ghost. He couldn’t leave, and why would she leave? She had money, a huge house, and the man she loved. In her warped way, she had everything she ever wanted.

She had money to live her life. Did she think Amelia would stop the money? Or was she afraid that Amelia would come back and take over the house again?

As previously stated, she had everything she wanted. And with the story that Stanley IV was the one that killed her husband, there was no way that Amelia would risk her son’s future, so she did the only thing she could do. She allowed herself to be blackmailed by her husband’s mistress. Agatha knew that Amelia would keep paying in order to protect the family secret.

I want a sneak peek into Lizzie’s love life. Who will she choose?

This is something she is going to struggle with over the next couple of books, I think. She feels betrayed by T.J. because he used her to capture her crazy serial killer aunt, Debra Cosgrove. After what happened with Jake in college, it took her a while to open her heart again. T.J. stomped all over it. She still cares about him, but she’s not sure she wants to get involved with him again because she doesn’t know if she can trust him. As for Jake, he hasn’t really changed since their college days. He’s still trying to control things, and she knows it. She’s been making her own decisions and living her own life, and to give that up would be like cutting a piece of herself off. She knows Jake has ulterior motives, so she’s keeping him at arms’ length and watching him closely.

If Lizzie could do anything, and didn’t always find herself fighting crime, what would she do?

Despite her grumblings, I think she enjoys working at the newspaper. She’s starting to get the hang of it, and she’s surprised by how much she looks forward to going to work. Now if she could just get rid of Jake…

I love your Lizzie books. When is the next one coming out?

Soon! I’m writing a stand-alone Lizzie story for an anthology called Unlucky 7 (that’s what the anthology is called, not the Lizzie story). My contribution is Death Takes the Blue Ribbon. I will just say there is a pie-eating contest, and a death of someone we all know. I’m also hoping to get a second Lizzie story out before Christmas, Death Shoots the Sheriff (and no, it’s not Owen!).

I loved answering your questions! We’ll have to do this again soon!  If you have questions you’d like to see answered, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter!

Posted in Writing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Friday’s Miscellaneous This and That

What a week it has been! Who Killed the Ghost in the Library? is really starting to take off. At the time of this post, it’s currently ranked #52 under Mystery, Thriller, Suspense/Crime Fiction/Murder! And it has eight 5-star reviews! I’m shocked, surprised and pleased beyond words. I put a lot of heart and soul into this book, and to have people embracing it like they are is just thrilling. One person told me that Cam is “a modern day, young Jessica Fletcher”, which is a wonderful compliment, because I grew up watching “Murder, She Wrote” with my mother. Someone else told me that the book was just as good as a Janet Evanovich book, also a compliment because I love Stephanie Plum! Cam did an interview this week on Christina Freeburn’s blog. You can read the interview here (and check out Christina’s mystery series while you’re there): Cam’s Interview

In case you think I’ve forgotten about Lizzie, I haven’t! I am currently working on a Lizzie story for a box set called Unlucky 7. The title of my story is Death Takes the Blue Ribbon. There are six other authors who will be joining me in this collection: Jamie Lee Scott, Scott Silverii, Fiona Quinn, Diane Capri , Hildie McQueen, and Vivi Anna. We are looking at a November publication date. I will let you know more as information becomes available. Death Takes the Blue Ribbon will be a stand alone book, so don’t worry about missing out on anything in the story line! But wait…that’s not the only Lizzie book coming out! I am also hoping to publish Death Shoots the Sheriff by Christmas! This one WILL continue the storyline, and will pick up a short time after the end of Death Catches a Killer. So if you haven’t read that one yet, you have plenty of time to get it!

On a more somber note: I would be remiss if I did not say something about the passing of Robin Williams. I first watched him on “Mork and Mindy”, and thought he was a wonderful comedian. I watched his show “A Night at the Met”, and I was amazed at how funny he was about his addiction, and life in general. I’ve seen many of his movies and his one-man shows on DVD, and I have shared the laughter that he brought me with my son. I guess I could relate to him because I make fun of the things that happen in my life. It’s a way to cope and deal with them. Laughter is the best medicine, but sometimes in the midst of the laughter, we can forget what causes the pain in the first place. Those that bring us the laughter often have the deepest pain. If you know someone who is going through a rough time, reach out to them, even if it’s just to say hello. Sometimes just listening to them talk about their hard day can help more than you know.

That’s it from me for today. Who knows what I’ll talk about next week! You’ll have to come back and find out!

Posted in Mystery, Writing | Leave a comment

A Sneak Peak of Who Killed the Ghost in the Library?

I thought I would give you all an update on how things are going with my newest story (and series), Who Killed the Ghost in the Library? This will be my first full-length novel (currently 315 pages!), and I’m terribly nervous and excited about it.

8_days_logoI finished entering all the editing notes my beta readers/editors gave me, as well as my own notes, last night, and sent it off for the final read through. It looks like everything is still on track for an August 5th release date. That’s next Tuesday, folks!

It was suggested to me that I should share an excerpt from the story. This was followed by a discussion about what scene I should share with you. I hope you enjoy the part we picked out!

The advantage of riding in a patrol car with lights and sirens is that you get to your destination a lot faster without the fear of getting a ticket. We stopped in front of the nursing home twelve minutes later. There were three other patrol cars there, along with a couple of county sheriff’s cars. An ambulance was parked behind one of the county cars. Ignoring the wave of nausea that swept over me, I ran after Mike and Steve as they ran through the front door.

Nursing homes are like mazes, in my opinion, meant to confuse the mice so they can’t find their way to the cheese. Or in this case, to make sure that the people who lived there couldn’t find their way to the front door. We made a couple of wrong turns before we found the outdoor garden, which is in the center of the complex.

Grandma Alma was sitting in her wheelchair, being checked out by one paramedic while his partner checked out Walt, who was down on the ground. “Grandpa!” Mike said, rushing to his side.

“I’m alright,” Walt said.

He didn’t look alright. There was a bruise on his cheek, a gash on his forehead, and he looked pale. The paramedic treating him looked up at Mike. “I think he might have broken a hip.”

“What about her?” Mike said, pointing at Grandma Alma.

“Sprained wrist, nothing serious.”

Mike turned to the deputy that was standing nearby. “What happened here?”

“We got a call about an assault in progress. By the time we got here, your men were already searching for the suspect.”

His radio crackled. “Suspect in custody.”

“Have them bring him to us.”

The deputy nodded and relayed the message. “What happened, Ms. Alma?” Mike asked.

“I went back to my room to get my binoculars. Walt thought he spotted a bird’s nest in that tree over there,” she said, pointing to a nearby tree. “When I came back out, someone dressed in black was beating up your grandfather. He fell to the ground, and the person pulled out a knife and stood over him, ready to stab him. I rolled up behind him and started yelling and beating him with my cane.” She held up her cane, which was bent in half. “I might have gotten a bit carried away. Whoever it was gave up and ran off.”

“What were you thinking, Grandma?” I chided her. “You could have been killed.”

“I wasn’t about to sit by and be a helpless victim, young lady,” she said sternly. “You know me better than that!”

“She was great,” Walt said, smiling with pride.

My head started spinning again, and I sat down on the bench next to Grandma Alma’s wheelchair. “You smell like smoke,” she said, getting a good whiff of me.

“Sorry about that,” I said. “Someone tried to blow us up.”

I hope that’s grabbed your attention! You’ll just have to wait until Tuesday, August 5th to read the rest of Who Killed the Ghost in the Library?

Posted in Mystery, Writing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Announcing My First Full-Length Novel!

Wow, it really has been a long time since I’ve posted! I am so sorry! I should be grounded and sent to my room; my son says that’s not really punishment, though. I have a TV, DVD player, and plenty of movies in there, and I can always sneak the WiiU in there to keep myself entertained!

Actually, things have been a little crazy in my house for the last eight, nine months. My only child moved to Missouri in November, taking a big piece of my heart with him. I’ve had a rough time of it, as I’m sure all parents who are suddenly empty nesters will understand (granted, I still have the other child, aka my husband, but it’s not the same thing!). I did a little writing, but the motivation just wasn’t there because my son was gone.

However, thanks to Bente Gallagher, who graciously shared one of her story ideas with me, Jamie Livingston-Dierks, Stacy Jeziorowski, Kristi Spinks, my parents and my son, I finally started working on a brand new story. It’s in the final editing stages as I type this (speed it up, Stacy!), and we are planning to release the story August 5th.

Introducing My First Full-Length Novel!

So, what kind of story is it? For starters, it’s what you’ve all been asking for: it’s a full-length novel! No, really! As of right now, it’s 313 pages, almost 90,000 words. I’m just as surprised and thrilled as you are! I didn’t think I had it in me, but once I got into the story, it just flowed.

GhostInTheLibrary1It’s not a Lizzie story, however. Like I said, this is a brand new series, and the first book is Who Killed the Ghost in the Library? It stars a ghost writer named Cam Shaw, who ghost writes stories for other people (sorry, due to those pesky confidential and non-disclosure agreements, we’re not allowed to tell you who she’s worked with). However, her newest client believes she actually helps ghosts write their stories, because, well…he’s a ghost. Stanley Ashton III was murdered in the mid-1940s in his own house, and he’s been stuck there ever since. After seeing Cam’s ad in the newspaper, he hires her to find out who killed him. But someone doesn’t want the story to come out. Bodies start dropping like flies, someone tries to kill a former police chief, who is the grandfather of the current police chief, Mike Penhall. Mike thinks that Cam needs to butt out of his investigation, until he meets Stanley. So who killed the ghost, and who doesn’t want the truth to come out?

I promise there are plenty of explosions, excitement, shootouts, and chemistry, especially between Cam and Mike. Keep checking here and my author page on Facebook for excerpts and more details as it gets closer to the release date. I’m very excited about this book, and I know you all are going to LOVE it!

It’s Going to be a Busy Year!

Yes, there will be a second book! Who Killed the Ghost Writer? Cam is contacted by the ghost of a fellow ghost writer, who was killed because of a book they were writing. But Cam doesn’t know who her friend’s client is, because the manuscript has disappeared!

I’m sure you are wondering about poor Lizzie. Don’t worry! I haven’t forgotten about her. I have a couple of plot ideas I’m bouncing around for her: Death Drives a Zamboni and Death Shoots the Sheriff. I’m not sure which one is going to be first, but I’m hoping to have a new Lizzie story by the end of the year. Catch up on all of the Lizzie’s adventures in the meantime!

Thank you all for being so patient! I promise it was all worth it! The new story is fantastic! Stay tuned!

Posted in Mystery, Writing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment