A Tantalizing Ego Swirl

One-Man Publishing
Not For The Faint of Heart

-Memoir-

A Tantalizing Ego-Swirl

By BR Chitwood

As best as it can the mind opens a menu of items that an individual can consider as an occupation, hobby, a regimen that might fit nicely with the mental and the organic nature of her/his life.

It was my notion that Writing might well be the best place to settle in and do what many teachers and close friends told me I excelled .  As a kid, I loved to put words together and form rhyming schemes. My mind was crowded with daydreams of being an actor, singer, author.

After some years of sales, marketing, and business ownership, I began writing a blog: 350+posts, flash fiction, and short stories.  I also wrote 20 books in many genres (most were books in the Mystery, Suspense, Romance – generally, fictional narratives inspired by real crimes that would receive 5-Star Amazon Reviews…

The ‘monkey on my back’ would turn out to be an inept sales and marketing system, or, lack thereof, relying, as it were, on the social media and book support groups. I was a one-man publishing company who put most of his time into writing, doing his own editing without the professional input from pros, falling far short in the fields where I had made my living for so many years…marketing.

Still, when I released each book there was not the huge launching splash, lined-up book reviewers, the costly (and, needed!) help from the pros. I loved writing and it would become my wont to go from a finished book directly into the next project.

I suppose it was an unbridled RUSH to leave a legacy of   sorts because much of my adult life had been spent in the ‘neon playgrounds’ searching for love in attempts to negate my negative Appalachian roots of poverty, abuse, emotional chaos, and always a sense of longing for the missing links of love and picket fence happiness.

After a US Naval tour of duty and graduation from a small Pennsylvania college, leaving out some drudgery, I headed West to California and found gold – okay, by and large, fool’s gold. The neon glitter got to me, a country yokel blessed with fair looks, a soft, smooth southern charm, an easy prey to lovely women and the ugly taste of alcohol.

It was a great spread of time when I somehow became a partially noticed actor – did many TV commercials, stage play, and film projects. There were some very good times, and, of course, that other kind…

I would finally end up in Phoenix, Arizona, would try marriage a few times and was blessed with beautiful children, built a big house on a hill close to Tombstone (that town in Southeast Arizona ‘too tough to die’) and my serious writing began.  

‘The Bailey Crane Mystery Series’ – Books 1-6, was my first writing project, building my main character mostly around myself, parts true, parts untrue. Bailey Crane tells his own ‘mystery stories’, most of which are taken from true crimes, the narratives invented by me. Of course, Bailey Crane is one of my favorite novel characters because I get to weave in some of my own life experiences through him. He is a crime fighter who is serious and tedious in his detective work and his personal life experiences (guess you could call him my personal Psychiatrist because he and his ‘alter ego buddy’ do a good job in defining me.

The first book in the ‘Bailey Crane Series’ has the title, “An Arizona Tragedy – A Bailey Crane Mystery #1” and this book has a personal side for me. The young actress brutally murdered in this ‘true crime’ fiction was a friend of mine and shared living quarters with my wife before our marriage. The crime is still a ‘cold case’ for the Phoenix Police Department. Anyone who might read this book and has information about this case, PLEASE contact the Phoenix PD Cold Case Division.

The other books in the Bailey Crane Series are also taken from actual crimes… Each book stands alone. Anyone interested in this series can find them, along with my other books from many genres, on Amazon.com and/or my personal Website – https://www.brchitwood.com .

I have written twenty books in the Mystery, Suspense, Thriller, Romance, Science Fiction, Memoir genres. All my books, with synopses, are listed on my Website.

With the books I’ve written, there have been no set and professional marketing agenda – my ‘Bad’, I suppose, but I wanted to work through all the processes, a true ‘do it yourself’ approach…through the drafts, the editing, the book covers, et al. My college degree major was English and I have taught ‘Advanced Writing’ classes.

So, I am comfortable in my efforts, and I know that, of those twenty books I have written, there are some real winners… Read this thriller…  “Mama’s Madness” – Read this one… “Stranger Abduction” – Or, read “Dominique” – or, “Phoenix Fire” – or. “Daddy, No!” – or, “Hammer’s Holy Grail” – or, “The Cracked Mirror…” Aw, read them all!

Don’t know if I accomplished anything with this post except a few tears shed…just trying to sell some books I believe to be worthy of reading.

Enough, already! Onward and upward!

BR Chitwood – October 30, 2020

A Tantalizing Ego-Swirl

By BR Chitwood

As best as it can the mind opens a menu of items that an individual can consider as an occupation, hobby, a regimen that might fit nicely with the mental and the organic nature of her/his life.

It was my notion that Writing might well be the best place to settle in and do what many teachers and close friends told me I excelled .  As a kid, I loved to put words together and form rhyming schemes. My mind was crowded with daydreams of being an actor, singer, author.

After some years of sales, marketing, and business ownership, I began writing a blog: 350+posts, flash fiction, and short stories.  I also wrote 20 books in many genres (most were books in the Mystery, Suspense, Romance – generally, fictional narratives inspired by real crimes that would receive 5-Star Amazon Reviews…

The ‘monkey on my back’ would turn out to be an inept sales and marketing system, or, lack thereof, relying, as it were, on the social media and book support groups. I was a one-man publishing company who put most of his time into writing, doing his own editing without the professional input from pros, falling far short in the fields where I had made my living for so many years…marketing.

Still, when I released each book there was not the huge launching splash, lined-up book reviewers, the costly (and, needed!) help from the pros. I loved writing and it would become my wont to go from a finished book directly into the next project.

I suppose it was an unbridled RUSH to leave a legacy of   sorts because much of my adult life had been spent in the ‘neon playgrounds’ searching for love in attempts to negate my negative Appalachian roots of poverty, abuse, emotional chaos, and always a sense of longing for the missing links of love and picket fence happiness.

After a US Naval tour of duty and graduation from a small Pennsylvania college, leaving out some drudgery, I headed West to California and found gold – okay, by and large, fool’s gold. The neon glitter got to me, a country yokel blessed with fair looks, a soft, smooth southern charm, an easy prey to lovely women and the ugly taste of alcohol.

It was a great spread of time when I somehow became a partially noticed actor – did many TV commercials, stage play, and film projects. There were some very good times, and, of course, that other kind…

I would finally end up in Phoenix, Arizona, would try marriage a few times and was blessed with beautiful children, built a big house on a hill close to Tombstone (that town in Southeast Arizona ‘too tough to die’) and my serious writing began.  

‘The Bailey Crane Mystery Series’ – Books 1-6, was my first writing project, building my main character mostly around myself, parts true, parts untrue. Bailey Crane tells his own ‘mystery stories’, most of which are taken from true crimes, the narratives invented by me. Of course, Bailey Crane is one of my favorite novel characters because I get to weave in some of my own life experiences through him. He is a crime fighter who is serious and tedious in his detective work and his personal life experiences (guess you could call him my personal Psychiatrist because he and his ‘alter ego buddy’ do a good job in defining me.

The first book in the ‘Bailey Crane Series’ has the title, “An Arizona Tragedy – A Bailey Crane Mystery #1” and this book has a personal side for me. The young actress brutally murdered in this ‘true crime’ fiction was a friend of mine and shared living quarters with my wife before our marriage. The crime is still a ‘cold case’ for the Phoenix Police Department. Anyone who might read this book and has information about this case, PLEASE contact the Phoenix PD Cold Case Division.

The other books in the Bailey Crane Series are also taken from actual crimes… Each book stands alone. Anyone interested in this series can find them, along with my other books from many genres, on Amazon.com and/or my personal Website – https://www.brchitwood.com .

I have written twenty books in the Mystery, Suspense, Thriller, Romance, Science Fiction, Memoir genres. All my books, with synopses, are listed on my Website.

With the books I’ve written, there have been no set and professional marketing agenda – my ‘Bad’, I suppose, but I wanted to work through all the processes, a true ‘do it yourself’ approach…through the drafts, the editing, the book covers, et al. My college degree major was English and I have taught ‘Advanced Writing’ classes.

So, I am comfortable in my efforts, and I know that, of those twenty books I have written, there are some real winners… Read this thriller…  “Mama’s Madness” – Read this one… “Stranger Abduction” – Or, read “Dominique” – or, “Phoenix Fire” – or. “Daddy, No!” – or, “Hammer’s Holy Grail” – or, “The Cracked Mirror…” Aw, read them all!

Don’t know if I accomplished anything with this post except a few tears shed…just trying to sell some books I believe to be worthy of reading.

Enough, already! Onward and upward!

BR Chitwood – October 30, 2020

https://www.brchitwood.com

Wordsmith Extraordinaire: John Dolan

From My Archives

An Interview With John Dolan – Author of:

FUN WITH DICK

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-NEW for 2020-

SYNOPSIS:

Twenty-five-year-old Richard Blackheart – geek, wage slave and Superman wannabe – seems destined for a life of dull obscurity.
Then one day he hits upon an idea for the ultimate non-self-help book, ‘How to Die Alone, Smelly and Unloved’, and things start to change …

‘Fun with Dick’ is a heart-wrenching, hilarious and harrowing tale of one man’s struggle against gravity and cats. It is not recommended for people who are easily triggered. If you do read it, keep your shrink’s phone number handy.

-Now Available on Amazon-

BUY SITES:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Fun-Dick-John-Dolan-ebook/dp/B083RW93CV/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=fun+with+dick&qid=1583519142&s=books&sr=1-2

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Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fun-Dick-John-Dolan/dp/1912361078/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=fun+with+dick&qid=1583519691&s=books&sr=1-2

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Amazon Canada: https://www.amazon.ca/Fun-Dick-John-Dolan-ebook/dp/B083RW93CV/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=fun+with+dick&qid=1583519839&s=books&sr=1-2

Check these books out as well:

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JUST CLICK ON ANY COVER FOR THE BUY SITES

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AN UPDATE

NEW!

 

A Disclaimer ‘Preface’

Perhaps I’m over-stepping the ‘surly bonds’ of respectability with this archive rendering, but, nearly a decade ago, a jolly fellow from my beloved ancestral England caught my attention with his wordsmith brilliance and his hilariously creative way of interviewing fellow authors, myself included. I’m proud to say that I, in turn, escaping his threats, innuendoes, infringements and lawsuits with promises to glorify him daily with tweets, loving words, and phrases, was permitted to interview the author in question by using the same technique… Without my stale humor attempts, the author being interviewed did indeed make author interviews not only informative but so much fun to read, not to mention the good information delivered.

I’ve gone to the archives and retrieved that ‘Interview’ of some years ago, and I thank him for being here today – at least with his words of years ago – although he appears, as he did then, a bit angry by his mode of transportation.

John Dolan is the author’s name, and I’ve just read his latest ‘jewel fonts’ found in, “Fun With Dick.” In fact, I’ve read all his books – you will see some of them below. This old country-boy is an ‘easy sale’, can be sold just about any item, tech goodies, automobiles with wooden tires, and ice cream on a frigid day, but, when it comes to writing, holding readers captive for hundreds of pages, not wanting an ending, I cannot be fooled…at least, that’s what my good wife tells me.

So, while JD’s check is not in the amount agreed upon, I truly do love his writing. (John, please, don’t go nutsy on me…you’re going to break the orange crate…) I’m just kidding about the check…this time, I shall truly stop with the banal humor.

Here is my long-ago interview of John Dolan, the idea for which came after reading many of his author interviews of the same technique…indeed, HIS very own ‘intellectual property’. For me, those unique ‘John Dolan Interviews’ were ‘golden nuggets’ to treasure…okay, sorry for the trite, sophomoric bromide.  If you’ve never read them, go to John Dolan’s archives. It will be worth your trip. They were truly humorous and informative BLASTS.

Just a final few words about John Dolan’s NEW 2020 novel“Fun With Dick.” This is a book I highly recommend you read. It has elements from several genres, and, I promise, you will not be sorry you read it.

 Here is the 5-Star Review I gave “Fun With Dick” on Amazon:

Billy Ray Chitwood

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5.0 out of 5 stars – The Author-Wizardry of John Dolan: FUN WITH DICK – 5 Huge Stars

Billy Ray Chitwood

Reviewed in the United States on February 17, 2020

Format: Kindle Edition – Verified Purchase

AND, Now, 8-years old, but still relevant:

An Interview:  John Dolan – Author Extraordibnaire

This is a ‘Do Not Miss’ combo for you: an interview with a quality author and a partial review of his 5-Star book, “Everyone Burns.” If you have not the pleasure of reading John Dolan you’ve missed a ‘Wordsmith Extraordinaire’ creating his magic. JD is truly a quintessential author for his times. He is also the man who introduced me and countless others to the word, ‘Galericulate’ — that was once the name of his website/blog. (See end of interview and summary.) He’s the man hidden under the hat and he’s roaming around some continent or another. At last report, he was in Amsterdam…

OOPS – UPDATE: that was 2012…he was just recently released from Foxes and Hounds Tranquility Center! He’s much better now, I’m told! I do so hope my information is accurate…

JUST KIDDING. JD IS JUST FINE – ORNERY, BUT, FINE!

But, be gone, my foolishness! Here’s a re-blog of my 2012 interview with this important literary figure and an update on his writing and ‘book cover’ changes…

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BUY SITES FOR “Everyone Burns”:

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Everyone-Burns-Time-Blood-Karma-ebook/dp/B008I6GXM2/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=everyone+burns&qid=1583442961&s=books&sr=1-1

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Everyone-Burns-Time-Blood-Karma-ebook/dp/B008I6GXM2/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=everyone+burns&qid=1583443269&s=books&sr=1-1

Amazon Canada: https://www.amazon.ca/Everyone-Burns-Time-Blood-Karma-ebook/dp/B008I6GXM2/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=everyone+burns&qid=1583443464&s=books&sr=1-1

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NOW – THE 2012 AUTHOR INTERVIEW

‘Burning’ John Dolan, Writer Extraordinaire – An Interview (Sort of!)”

(BR Chitwood=BR)…(John Dolan= JD)

*

BR: Okay, Filbert, take off Mr. Dolan’s  blindfold…

JDHey, not so rough! You just don’t take ‘no’ for an answer, do you?

BR: Why should I? You can leave us now, Filbert, and take Salomé with you.

JD: You kidding me? ‘Salomé!’ ‘Filbert!’ They’re ‘junkies…’

BR: Had no money…they grabbed you for the ‘grass.’

JD: Are you mocking me? Are you stealing my interview ideas?

BR: Show me a legal document!

JD: At least my interview chair is comfortable, and my straps are pure leather, not this cord crap!

BR: You left me no choice, JD, you broke your promise to take my books viral and…

JD: Correction! I said your books were vile and pretentious…

BR: Okay, okay, I understand you’re a bit angry…just some tit for tat, that’s all. I really like your book, “Everyone Burns,” and I’m thinking ‘movie,’ ‘TV series,’ something really big. Can we just relax and talk about the book?

JD: Can you at least put a cushion on this orange crate? You’re not helping my hemmies.

BR: How’s that? Better? Good…Now tell me about “Everyone Burns” and how you came to write it.

JD: Guess I got no choice, but you gotta promise me you’re not going to make a habit of this kind of interview. This is my idea, not yours. Do we have a deal?

BR: Yes, we have a deal…Hell, I thought you would be pleased!

JD: Well, I am, sort of, but this is intellectual property, not something you mess with…plus, I only get one original idea per decade.

BR: Okay, no more kidnaps for interviews! Got it! Can we proceed?

JD: The events in “Everyone Burns” take place over seventeen days while Thailand is still numb from the giant tsunami of December 2004. Like everyone of sane mind this great catastrophe made my emotions run wild, made me think of life like I had never really thought about it. “Everyone Burns” gave me some escape from the reality all around me.

BR: Really?

JD: No, not really. I wrote it for the money and the groupies.

BR: And how’s that working out?

JD: Probably about as well as it’s working out for you, I’d guess. Well … looking at you, probably slightly better with the groupies.

BR: Here’s a quote from “Everyone Burns,” just after a bar fracas scene:

To summarise, my life is one of split personality. I am in two minds about it myself.

 Nevertheless, down these narrow streets a man must walk, even if it is in flip-flops.

But I am no Philip Marlowe, and Koh Samui is not film-noir USA. There is nothing

of Hollywood’s black and white morality on this most colourful of Thailand’s

Islands. And long overcoats just make you sweat in the sun. Here The Postman

Never Rings Twice, simply because he never rings at all. He has better things to do. Lamai’s and Chaweng’s adventurers generally pack a condom, not a gun.”

You open the book with a broken cue stick inflicting injury to your protagonist and it’s like the excitement and action  never lets up after that. I picked this quote because it’s one of my favorites but also because it gives the reader a sample of your splendid writing…

Do you have any disagreement with my assessment here, JD?

JD: Take these cords off and I’ll kiss you. The passage is also a favorite of mine. Aside from the style thing in my writing, it is just basically who I am. But I’m NOT David Braddock, by the way. I want to make that clear in case my wife Fiona is reading this! A book of this genre for me has to move at a rapid pace, the action mostly non-stop. A lot of what I write about in “Everyone Burns” has some factual similarities, the people, the places, the time certainly. And, of course, you know my English is rather precise, proper, as it was intended to be! WHY are you smiling and shaking your head?

BR: Never mind, just me being me! I just like the ‘snap to’ words you love coming off your lips. It’s a great book, JD. Wish we had more time because I’d like to mention “People With Real Lives Don’t Need Landscapes,” a book of poetry you wrote in 2003. You certainly have a way with words, JD, and I happen to love poetry. As Amazon puts it, “This big bouncy collection of contemporary poetry draws on both popular and high culture. The poems have energy, imagination, humor, and lively speech rhythms. They are light, weighty, topical, intellectual, gory, sad, wild, and tender all at once… Why are you vigorously shaking your head, JD?”

JD: I didn’t write that.

BR: What?

JD: I didn’t write that collection of poetry. That was a different John Dolan.

BR: Are you sure?

 JD: What do you mean, “Am I sure”? I’m not likely to forget a thing like that, am I?Sheesh! It’s scary how your brain can live in such a small space.

BR: That hurts, JD. To think, a while ago you were going to ‘kiss me’… Oh, well, regardless, I loved your book “Everyone Burns” and can’t wait for the sequel. [That would be “Hungry Ghosts.”] People should really take a long look at you, my friend…

JD: ‘My friend!’ My butt is sore here, BR!

BR: Filbert and Salome are ‘napping’ right now. I’ll untie you, but, please, no fracas here. Tit for tat, remember? Be gentle.

End of Interview… [JD: Please, no retaliation!]

 *

 Browse all books by John Dolan: Sign up for his Newsletter, news, articles: johndolanauthor.com

Follow JD on Twitter: twitter.com/johndolanauthor

Visit JD’s Author Website: johndolanauthor.com – you will find information about this unique and wonderful literary genius, his books, his life and times…

You want good reading? Check out the books above, and, more…you will not be disappointed. John Dolan is destined for literary greatness! YOU HEARD IT HERE!

 (Really, follow him AND read him. He’s ugly mean: it took two junkies and me to get him here for this ‘Orange Crate’ interview!)

 

 

 

 

 

The Bailey Crane Mystery Series

  The Bailey Crane Mysteries 1-6

Meet Bailey Crane, a sleuth who wears his emotions in easy view of whomever he comes in contact. His musing is part of his charm and wit. He muses about old love affairs, friendships, anger, con artists, people of unusual character and wisdom. The case he’s working at the time does not suffer with his musing but gives more than flesh and bone dimensions to the characters. Below, mystery lovers may enjoy a 6-book series featuring a protagonist whose DNA is not only in solving crimes but in matters of the heart and soul. Bailey and the characters come alive within the pages.

Five of the six ‘Bailey Crane Mysteries’ are inspired by real crimes. Book 3 stands on only the author’s fictional narrative and character dialogue and development. The first book in the series is special because the young actress brutally murdered many years ago was a friend of the author and his wife. It is a case still unsolved to this day – a ‘cold case’ for the Phoenix Police Department.

These books are ‘stand alone’ reads but do have some obvious connectors – aging and life changes of the central character and his partners in crime solving. Here are the books in order, with a quick preview, and BUY sites.

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An Arizona Tragedy (1)

Editorial Reviews

Review

5.0 out of 5 starsA Thoroughly Enjoyable Must-Read!

By SUSAN H. MCINTYRE

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

I was glued to this story all the way to the end.. I want to avoid any spoilers, so I won’t reveal the plot. the description, however, does not begin to show how well-written this mystery novel is. The plot has twists and turns, with a few red herrings that kept me from predicting the end. I loved that! In addition, the main character, Bailey Crane, is well-developed. I feel as if I know this guy. He philosophizes, loves, has friends, and yet stays on track of the case. This book was a delight, and I plan to read more by this author!

From the Author

From the Author

Many years ago, a lovely actress friend of mine was brutally murdered in the desert northeast of Phoenix, Arizona. She was a young mother of two children, a legal secretary for two of my attorney buddies, and she was responsible for my acting avocation — we had the same great agent in Scottsdale, Bobby Ball.

My friend’s murder has never been solved, and this fictional novel was inspired by her death. The book was originally published years ago under the title, “Probable Cause,” by a small publisher. I’ve dusted it off, edited it, rewrote some sections, and it is now, “An Arizona Tragedy – A Bailey Crane Mystery.” It is my way of remembering her. She had her life in front of her with all the dreams most of our young generation had at the time, but her biggest dream was to have someone to love and a home for her family. 

You are never far from our thoughts, dear lady. 

BUY SITES:
Amazon US:  https://goo.gl/NQrJqF
Amazon UK:  https://goo.gl/Rxb528
**

Satan’s Song (2)

A young lady in Phoenix, Arizona is decapitated while riding her bike in a municipal park…(inspired by a true Phoenix crime). The Phoenix PD has the case but the girl’s mother comes to Bailey Crane and asks for his personal help in finding the maniacal killer. Another young lady is murdered in San Diego, yet another in Texas, and Bailey finds common connections. The final disposition of the case will come in a small ski community in Colorado. Bailey finds his killer and also a new beginning for his life. 

NOTE: This crime was unsolved for many years. Within the past few years, the Phoenix PD found their killer.

BUY SITES:

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/2dQcte

Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/NvBD72

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The Brutus Gate (3)

A warehouse fire nearly consumes Bailey Crane in this fiery opening, but our intrepid sleuth lives to add more battle scars to his job description. One of the thugs arrested at the warehouse is heard to mutter a cryptic phrase, “Beware the Brutus Gate.” Bailey and his buddies in blue have a hearty laugh at the pithy utterance and try to figure out what it means.

This is a proverbial roller coaster ride for Bailey, the department, and the Fibbies as they anticipate drug shipments coming in from Mexico. In this large caper there’s a bunch of crimes taking place – drugs, murder, rape, political corruption. Bailey has all he can handle plus another ‘turning point’ in his life. 

BUY SITES:

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/psF7CD

Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/c7wqrD

****

Murder in Pueblo del Mar (4)

5.0 out of 5 stars Murder in Pueblo del Mar by Billy Ray Chitwood
Recently finished “Murder in Pueblo del Mar” and found it very entertaining! It’s one of those “hard to put down” kind of mysteries! Will be looking for more books by Billy Ray Chitwood!
Review Published 15 days ago on amazon.com by Mary A. Smith
5.0 out of 5 starsAnother Mexico Murder Story

By Mike D. Landfair on August 18, 2014

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

I liked the story, and the introspection. The dropping of “I” as the subject in his sentences, while annoying, wasn’t enough to reduce the novel to four stars.

From the Author

“Murder In Pueblo Del Mar – A Bailey Crane Mystery” is Book 4 of 6 in the ‘Bailey Crane Series.’

Some years ago a mother was savagely murdered while on holiday in Mexico. The case had many interesting elements, from cock fights and sex tapes to transsexual lover. This true event inspired me to write book 4 of The Bailey Crane mysteries. This author also had a dear friend whose wife was fighting her battles with alcoholism and there was an inherent need to combine this element in the story. It is my feeling that including issues with which many people can identify, along with the criminal case under study can only bring heightened awareness and some measure of compatibility with the plot line. It is also true that my father-in-law did in fact live around the ‘bend of the caliche road’, and my wife and I were frequent visitors.

The friends are now gone and sorely missed…friends in the book: father-in-law and my wife’s step-mother in truth.

BUY SITES:

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/bNfefn

Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/KzKS5L

*****

A Soul Defiled (5)Editorial Reviews

From the Author

“A Soul Defiled – A Bailey Crane Mystery” is Book 5 of six books in the ‘Bailey Crane Mystery Series’.

This short ‘Bailey Crane’ book will be the fifth in the series and likely one of my personal favorites. Why? Don’t really know, except the environment for writing the book was so very pleasant — stopping occasionally during the laptop pecks and looking out across that beautiful sea was so exhilirating. In fact, watching from my deck, a hawker walking on the beach peddling his serapes gave me the very first glimpse into this ‘Bailey Crane’ novel. Unfortunately, the poor hawker in the book was to have a very short appearance in the prologue of “A Soul Defiled.” 

Note: Each ‘Bailey Crane’ Book can be read independently of the other. 

From the Back Cover

Bailey Crane and wife, Wendy, are just settling into their new condo unit on the Sea of Cortez when a call from an old friend begins a dangerous ride through another mystery maze. They’re all here, the scammers, contract killers, good guys, bad guys. Bailey has come to the sea for some retirement fun and sun. Instead, he gets kidnapped twice, battered and bruised twice, meets a man of intrigue, and, finally finds that friendship and life can come to surprising ends. 

With compelling characters and a beautiful backdrop of sea and desert elegance, this is a tale with surprising climactic moments, not to be missed.

BUY SITES:

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/ojyTgk

Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/P0cwuT

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A Common Evil (6)

Editorial Reviews

Review

5.0 out of 5 stars – Sin and sand

By CA reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

A COMMON EVIL is the 6th and final novel in his Bailey Crane mystery series and takes us to a seaside resort along Mexico’s Sea of Cortez. Bailey is a retired Arizona cop who, with his wife Wendy, has settled into the condo resort in Mexico and is now the homeowner’s association head honcho. But along with sun and luxe, the Cranes also find danger and duplicity.

The cornerstone of the story is a scenario in which the largest cartel in Mexico, with a jefe who is not too objectionable, promises to clean up the violence and strike a deal with the Mexican government. Part of the clean-up action (read: getting rid of his rivals in order to run a drug monopoly with Mexico City’s approval) spills over onto Bailey’s turf. There’s a shootout on the resort property, Wendy is kidnapped because of a letter Bailey wrote protesting the dubious dealings of an American in with the cartels, and Bailey’s survival instincts surge to the fore, although not always with the results he intends.

This isn’t the usual whodunit but a look at Mexico’s drug war through an expatriate’s eye. The charm of the novel–and the series–is driven by Bailey’s unmissable musings on life and love. His voice is a gutsier, spicier, and more raw version of Alexander McCall Smith’s point of view in the latter’s Isabel Dalhousie series but his subject matter is both more intense and immediate. Recommended.

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5.0 out of 5 starsChitwood adds wonderful finale to Bailey Crane Mystery Series

By Timothy M. Tays 

Format: Paperback

Billy Ray Chitwood channels his alter ego, Bailey Crane, for another suspenseful tale. In this final book in the Bailey Crane Mystery Series, Bailey wants nothing more than to enjoy a relaxing retirement in his penthouse in a Mexican beach resort with his beloved wife, Wendy. But once again, trouble finds him–and by association, Wendy–this time in the form of a vicious Mexican drug cartel and the nefarious characters who populate it. Bailey is sucked into violence when the cartel blames him for a government crackdown. When Wendy is targeted as a way to punish Bailey, he must suspend his gentle southern ways and become as vicious as the cartel thugs to save her. What follows is intrigue and moral dilemmas as Bailey fights forces too large for him to defeat.
With a final unexpected twist at the end, this is a gritty tale of evil that will always exists as long as people give in to their darker side–which, of course, they will. Somehow Bailey survives and still finds love and hope among the systemic evil and moral compromises. A must-read mystery novel!
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5.0 out of 5 starsA Common Evil is basic in all of us
By eden
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

A Common Evil addresses something basic in all of us–the need to preserve the things we love, whether they are people, a place to live, or a certain way of life.

This is the sixth and final book in the Bailey Crane Mystery Series, which started with An Arizona Tragedy – A Bailey Crane Mystery (Bailey Crane Mystery Series Book 1), and it more than stands on its own as an engaging story.

The setting is the Sea of Cortez, also known by other names–Gulf of California or Gulf of Mexico, a large inlet along the northwestern coast of Mexico. Already, the story attracted me due to its location – exotic, hot, sand, beach, and home to Corona beer.

Bailey Crane, a retired detective is minding his own business, living in a luxury beach resort with his wife, Wendy, when he is drawn into the shifty underworld. The start of the book pulls you in immediately with raucous gunfire. It offers a look of what it’s like to live among drug cartels that are at odds with one another. The paradox of paradise is that life is expendable when profit and greed motivate those in power.

Against the backdrop of the fascinating world of living in Mexico as an American, Mr. Chitwood treats us to moments of self-reflection with strong hints of his Southern upbringing. These moments were for me, some of the most satisfying passages in the book. They offered a deeper look into the inner workings of his protagonist.

Bailey Crane is not afraid to be brutish to protect what he wants. While he may wrestle with inner demons, he can steep himself firmly in the task at hand and reflect on his own morality later. In other words, he gets the job done.

Through his two main characters, the author offers us a glimpse of a couple who have been through a lot. Bailey Crane and Wendy have a very strong relationship, one with a love that runs deep and is deeply personal. Within that love, words are not always required to express how they feel for each other. At times, the book reads as an ode from Bailey to Wendy, and I found this particularly endearing.

As with all good mystery/thrillers, there are twists and turns and a surprise ending that made for a wonderful read. For lovers of the mystery genre, whether you slant toward action, cozy, or literary–A Common Evil will not disappoint.

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5.0 out of 5 stars
Fun and Games South of the Border
By Diogenes 
Format: Kindle Edition
‘A Common Evil’ is the sixth book in Billy Ray Chitwood’s mystery series. It is also the first of the series I have read – but I WILL be back for more.
Chitwood’s detective, Bailey Crane, has moved to Mexico with his wife, Wendy, hoping for a quiet retirement by the Sea of Cortez. But fate intervenes and Crane finds himself caught up in a shootout with members of a Mexican drugs cartel. So much for a quiet life. From then on, things go from bad to worse for the ex-detective…

One of the things I enjoy about Chitwood’s books – apart from the absorbing passages of reflection on life and purpose – is that his characters possess a moral ambivalence. Tales about two-dimensional ‘good’ and ‘bad’ guys bore me to tears. Not only does this approach strike me as lazy writing, but it also patronises the reader. Chitwood’s protagonists, on the other hand, face tough choices and the decisions they make are not always good ones.
Not just a crime/adventure tale, this novel is a treatise on what it means to grow old, to have secrets and to recognize the things that bind us and the things that fulfill us.

‘A Common Evil’ is a quick read, but a satisfying one. Now I need to go back and start the series at book one to see what I’ve missed.
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5.0 out of 5 stars… I read mysteries for the sleuth more than the sleuthing and that’s why I enjoyed A Common Evil so much
ByAmazon Customeron July 29, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I read mysteries for the sleuth more than the sleuthing and that’s why I enjoyed A Common Evil so much. Bailey Crane is a bible-belt gumshoe living la vida loca on the Sea of Cortez. It’s a retirement fantasy life that he and his wife – also an ex-cop – have cultivated as a reward for years of catching bad guys. But when a drug cartel muscles into his beach and barbecue lifestyle, the dream of a peaceful march into old age evaporates and Bailey is thrust back into the world of cops and robbers he and his wife had left behind. A fun, suspenseful mystery filled with the musings of a protagonist with plenty of regrets, A Common Evil makes for terrific beach reading (that’s where I read my copy).

Buy Sites:

Amazon US: https://goo.gl/57ExVZ

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One final word from me, the author…
It is my fault alone that these most readable mysteries have languished on the blogosphere shelfs for too long without better marketing – make that, little or no marketing! These books deserve more than what I’ve given them in terms of book marketing. So, you know what’s coming…please do yourself a favor and read one, several, or, all of these books. It’s my belief you will have satisfying reads.
Of the sixteen books I’ve written, these were my first six, and I’m sad that they are not getting the attention I believe they deserve. Five of the six are inspired by true criminal cases.
So, give Bailey Crane a chance to win you over! It is not lost on me that there are those ’31 flavors’ out there and these might not be your reading choices. 
These six books are good…hope you give them a read! 
-Billy Ray Chitwood – Author – July 30, 2018
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