Frank Westworth – Six Strings: a new quick-thriller from my guest author today
I have Frank Westworth as my Guest Author today.
Let’s find out more about him and his latest short story:
Six Strings: a new quick thriller
Gritty Britcrime author Frank Westworth stops by to chat about his new quick-thriller, Six Strings, which features his complicated contract killer, JJ Stoner. When Stoner isn’t wreaking havoc with a very large hammer, he plays electric guitar at a blue bar. And he also has a secret lair, as Frank explains…
Have you ever taken much notice of where action heroes live?
The fictional ones, not those in real life.
I read a lot, and am endlessly entertained by the way in which the most fascinating fictional characters appear to drift into a few main categories when it comes to their domestic arrangements.
Detectives, almost inevitably tortured souls with bleak pasts and desperate presents, somehow maintain something identifiable as a conventional nuclear family, inhabiting a mysteriously conventional family home. How squalid or how grand depends on many other things, of course – as in real life.
Other action types appear to live nowhere… or instead they live lives of improbable grandeur, passing through a privileged existence which is often less comprehensible than their various skills, intuitions, physical perfections, weapons prowess and often inexplicable psychotic genius.
I could list a few of the more remarkable homes … but when I started writing the odd adventures of JJ Stoner, one-time soldier, occasional musician and contracted strong arm of a mysterious man from an unidentified ministry, I thought long and hard about how he would live. Not where, exactly, not at first, but how he would live. What does a guy who maims and murders by day – when ordered to do so, as are soldiers everywhere – what does he do for a little R&R?
Just like Batman needs his batcave and Supermen his fortress of solitude, so I felt that my man needed his man cave.
So I gave him one…
Stoner’s hideaway is revealed in Six Strings – and here’s a taste of what else to expect:-
‘You want me to kill someone.’
Stoner plainly had a grasp of both the gravity and the subtlety of the situation. ‘There’s no need to rattle on so much. Killing people is what I do.’
‘But only if he orders me to…’
Life is usually fairly straightforward for former Sergeant Stoner. He plays electric guitar in a blues bar, and discreetly (deniably) resolves sticky situations for the British authorities.
When the Drug Squad can’t convict a particularly unpleasant pusher, Stoner is tasked with permanently solving the problem. But before he can deploy his very particular skill set to lethal effect, an old acquaintance steps out of the shadows and delivers disconcerting intelligence.
The job just got a lot more complicated.
‘Amateurs,’ Stoner muttered, mostly to himself, walking towards a pair of vehicles parked at right angles to each other, sidelights combining to provide a puddle of dim light which somehow deepened the surrounding darkness.
A man walked into that light, stopped, stood relaxed and plainly comfortable with his situation, armed – in some cinematic macho way – with a tyre iron, swinging gently. A distraction, maybe.
Stoner, undistracted, walked steadily to the edge of the dim pool and paced to a halt. He swung the holdall from his shoulder and lowered it to the ground, allowing the strap to fall across it. Then he spread his feet apart and lifted his arms to shoulder height. One invisible man patted him down from behind, removing a cell phone from a pocket; a second invisible man held the gun on him.
There was always a gun.
Here’s what people are saying:
‘It’s not every day you discover a short story with action, tension, and characters who draw you in. But Westworth’s JJ Stoner short story, Six Strings, offers all that plus dangerous locations and precision plotting wrapped in a ribbon of sharp noir dialogue. Brisk, tight, and worth the read… keep your eye on Stoner. And Westworth too.’
Rich Leder, novelist / screenwriter
‘In Six Strings, Frank Westworth delivers another JJ Stoner tale, providing the reader with all the trouble, action, and hard, fast-talking characters they can handle. A fun, rip-roaring read.’
David Oppegaard , author of The Town Built on Sorrow
Six Strings is a quick thriller, an hour’s intrigue and entertainment. It features characters from the JJ Stoner / Killing Sisters series. You don’t need to have read any of the other stories in the series: you can start right here if you like.
Six Strings is available at Amazon for 99p:
Amazon US: www.amazon.com/dp/B079FWDPS8
Amazon UK: www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B079FWDPS8
Author Facebook page: www.facebook.com/killingsisters
Author website: www.murdermayhemandmore.net
Author Amazon page: www.amazon.co.uk/Frank-Westworth/e/B001K89ITA/
Author Goodreads page:
About JJ Stoner
In a former life, JJ Stoner was a hard-faced military man. Now, discreetly and deniably, he resolves sticky situations for the British authorities. So when the Drug Squad can’t convict a particularly unpleasant pusher, Stoner is tasked with permanently solving the problem.
But before he can deploy his very particular skill set, an old acquaintance steps out of the shadows and delivers disconcerting intelligence…
As well as a complete, stand-alone short story, Six Strings includes an excerpt from The Corruption Of Chastity.
There’s also a behind-the-scenes blog from author Frank Westworth, who shares some of the secrets of Stoner’s shady existence.
Please note that Six Strings is intended for an adult audience and contains explicit violence.
Six Strings was published on 22 February 2018 at 99p/99c
Thanks so much for telling us about your latest quick-thriller Frank, and best wishes for your success. I hope readers will let us know what they think….