Thursday, January 7, 2016

Cary Allen Stone Spotlight - Mind Over Murder - A Jake Roberts Novel, Second in Series...

Through the panoramic plate glass windows of the new Maynard Holbrook Jackson, Jr. Terminal at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, I’m watching as the world’s largest passenger aircraft, an Airbus 380 slowly pulls up next to the extended Jetway bridge, and stops. The ground crew is waving lighted wands, and one of them drags a fat black power cord to one side of the aircraft’s nose. Another signals to the captain the power cord is alive. I crane my neck to look up through the terminal windows at the crown of the fuselage, high above the cockpit windows. Almost everything behind the airplane, a skyscraper with wings, has disappeared. The only thing I can see is the light of the rising sun breaking the eastern horizon. Laser-like beams of yellow, orange, and pink cut across the cobalt blue, sunrise sky. The beams will extend to the edge of the Milky Way. From where I’m standing, I can see a steady flow of anxious passengers deplaning between the aircraft door, and the Jetway bridge. 
My focus, though, is on the snapshot images of her. The ones I believed were locked away. The memories slice down and re-open the wound. She will walk off the plane in seconds. I thought I could handle this. I have to force the memories back into my mind vault. The Interpol photos they sent, documented that she is as beautiful, as the day she ran away. 

What I have come to learn in this life is––
 beauty is often the beast.

I spend the time since it happened, immersing myself in my work as a homicide detective. Pursuing murderers is a weird way to try to forget how sick this world really is. Business is up–– murder rates are on the rise, more killing every day. There are more angry folks on the streets than when I was a kid. No one takes responsibility for their actions anymore, at least since Nixon was pardoned. They feel deserving, or battered by life. Respect for everything is gone. There’s just cold-blooded, bizarre behavior now. Life has become a dismal reality show. “Compassion” is just a word floated at us by the Dali Lama. Someday, I swear I’m going to walk away from all of this, and spend the rest of my life just forgetting.

Mind Over Murder:
A Jake Roberts Novel

By Cary Allen Stone

Lori Powers had escaped from the United States after her final kill--that was when she had written "JAKE" over the body. Many thought that she planned to kill Jake next, but decided to leave the country at that time. Now, she had been found and was being brought back to America. The two lead investigators were there to meet her at the airport. Not surprisingly, Lori had captivated both of her guards and they were now quite willing to keep her and return back home. Lori was beautiful...Jake had just been thinking what he'd learn from meeting Lori:
"What I have come to learn in this life is--beauty is often the beast...

Lori had stopped killing, perhaps from knowing Jake? Loving him? What she did know was that she would be spending the rest of her life in jail for what she had done...

Mika and Jake met her, but Mika knew it was difficult for Jake. Mika had been his first love but now they were more like brother and sister, still loving each other and covering each other's back.

Mika was my first love. A lot has changed since Lori became so much a part of our lives. Mika and I were lovers once. We’re more like brother and sister now, confidants. How we arrived here, and what we endured, has left both of us damaged inside. I doubt either of us will ever be able to fall in love again. There’s a tight knot in the back of my neck. I try to massage it away. My head is crying out for Excedrin. My stomach is crying out for a Zantac. My heart is just crying. 
“How are you doing, Jake?”
 “So far––” 
It amazes me how long we can bury, conceal, and ignore the things in life that have hurt us deeply. How that seething pain, without warning, returns in full force at inopportune times. We think of ourselves as great, majestic mountains, sturdy and strong, unconquerable, but even mountains erode into deserts over time. After a while, we begin to realize how puny we are in the universe, and how little we control in our lives. All we really have inside, is what we believe to be true–– what we can live with...

Stone has shared the interior thoughts and dialogue of a man who faces danger every day to keep our country safe. The empathy that he's shown for our police officers is great. I, for one, had already wondered how they do what they are called upon to do. The outstanding effort of the author has put into words what readers will know must be true--they bury and ignore those feelings. But how long can they endure doing this? This is the second in the series and already we are worried about Jake and whether he can handle everything...

Sure I recognize that this is fiction and is purposely made dramatic to hold our attention and emotions, but I can't help but think that just one traumatic experience for some of our officers could be the breaking point beyond which they cannot recover. Indeed readers will continue to learn of this emotional stress as the series moves forward. This is not a series I can proclaim "magnificent," even though it is intriguingly unique in a number of ways. What I can say is that I've learned a much more healthy respect for the fear and raw nerves that each must have, given the continued lawlessness and lack of gun control that continues unchecked... May others find the very real message that underlies the thrilling stories that keep us riveted and work to effect change in whatever way possible.

But this is not a continuation of the Lori Powers case except in another unique twist again engineered by Jake... 

Meet Jared Hamilton, the latest serial killer who had decided to kill five people...

Jared Hamilton was born with an off-the-scale I.Q. He wore the standard Coke-bottle glasses. He walked the uncomfortable-in-his-shoes, insecure gait. He had a self-conscious, awkward demeanor. The fifth grade was the last one he was forced to complete in a formal learning institution. Inside his mind, was a whirlwind of thoughts and ideas. He saw numbers and days as colors. He watched equations fly past at the speed of light. He could solve them all without breaking a sweat. His extraordinary intellect was his strongest asset, that he couldn’t relate to anyone in the world was his major flaw...
Jared decided he was only going to murder five individuals, unlike the more prolific serial killers who had gone before him. It was a number that he had calculated in some skewed equation. He reasoned if he kept the numbers down, and used his superior intellect, powerful analytical logic, and his self-control, he had a better chance of eluding capture. Mind over murder. The equation said if he did more than five, like a gambler, it would all turn against him over time. He also had no plans to become a sick-fuck, murdering addict like all the others. He just wanted to enjoy the experience. He just wanted to be a player. He would be the best slayer-player ever. He decided that his top five killing techniques would not be as impersonal as a drive-by. He needed to do them all on a timeline. He was a genius, smarter than everyone, so he wasn’t going to make mistakes, he would beat the system. If he followed his equation, Jared believed he could satisfy his taste for blood, and then disappear off the radar, exist in complete isolation, until the heat died down. Once the trail was cold, he would reemerge as a respectable member of society, with a respectable career in industry, on Wall Street, or in politics.

And he was successful in every way, from the murder of his parents, on to the next one chosen, and the next...with everybody including Jake, totally clueless as to how to grab hold of this case...

Only one obsession developed by Jared became his  Achilles' heel...

One subplot that I especially enjoyed was Jake's strolling into the local crime boss' place and beginning a relationship with the individual, invariably turning out to having made a friend! This one had even killed Harmon, Jake's beloved partner... Still he went to visit him when he was on Death Row...
He’s barefoot. His prison pants are rolled up the one knee and he explains to me the absurdity that there are no Wall Street people in here, no bankers, no Federal Reserve Chairman, no Senators, or Congressmen, there are no one-percent, free market businessman types. The incarcerated and condemned are instead, poor, significantly uneducated, or at best blue collars who still believe, crazy or not, that the capitalistic system is the best because they could still be millionaires someday. 
In Death Row, there is just cold, harsh reality, and not too much intellectualizing. Someday is a special word to them. Every day they have is one. They really are the ones that couldn’t adjust, couldn’t deal with the rules and the man, prime examples of the dumbing down of America–– know those sports statistics, forget about the Constitution, fight our wars, but don’t come back all fucked up and do wrong here. It just occurred to me that all of my friends are murderers. Mika and I are the only ones that killed to protect, but we still killed. If I hadn’t sworn an oath, and wasn’t wearing a badge, I could be in one of these cells. I reach down and get a firm handshake from Chipper...

“I told him, man. I told Harmon, don’t fuck with me, man. HE WOULDN’T BACK AWAY.”
“Well, that was Harmon. You could have backed way.” 
The stabbing glare came back in my direction then his massive head turns away and looks at the guard. The guard took a tighter grip on his weapon. Chipper had something else to say to me. “You loved Harmon, didn’t you?”
 “Yes, I did.”
“I wish somebody had loved me like that, you know, real-like, like you and him, real.” He contemplates then rotates his broad shoulders toward the cell bars...

Why didn’t Chipper kill me. After I get back to my apartment, while taking off my bloodied clothes, in my shirt pocket I find a handwritten note, scribbled on a napkin from the prison:
I feel like I’m back in the womb, in the darkness, an unborn child, in a black universe. How long? What is this place? I hear cries. They are mine. I’m alone, afraid. –– Chipper 
Even serial killers, have a piece of humanity left inside of them. No one is completely evil.

And while Jake is hurting from the pain and loss of loved ones, he turns around and there she is...

We should walk to Hard Rock. We can have lunch and a few drinks, and then come back to run through the fountains hammered,” she says.
“Sounds like a plan. What do you want to do after that?”
 “Anything you want, name it,” she says. I’m as agreeable as I have ever been in my life. If she said get on all fours and demonstrate the pound puppy hump, I would.

One of the key reasons for becoming a serious fan of Cary Allen Stone is his overall story line plus subplots that have been used to further develop the type of man Jake Roberts is. In doing that, I saw my thoughts and feelings were quite similar to those of the main character. Were these also those owned by the author? Could be... But the more important thing to me is that he included important issues in these books and takes a stand. Not everything is black and white. Not every criminal becomes a killer. Not everybody that kills have no feelings of loss, sadness, and dismay at the life they've led... 

Stone's books are thought-provoking, memorable, as well as seriously engaging page-turners... A master at character creation that forces avid readers to take a personal interest, even in those committing the crimes. You don't hate Stone's bad guys, you see a depth of their character and past--the cause for their crimes. These are not the men out for power, for bottom-line money--they have a personality that is carefully explained and developed. And, somehow you don't exactly hate them, you feel sorry for them... I found this difference a welcome diversion from the more routine "total sympathy for victim and hate for the criminal." And a much more fascinating overall reading...Third book coming...


I was born in 1953 and received a Bachelor of Arts in 1976. In 1972, I started private pilot flying lessons and progressed to Airline Transport Pilot certification in 1978. I taught new students, flew twin-engine charters, corporate jets, and finally airliners like the B727, DC-9, B737, A300, and L1011. I was hired for my first airline job in 1982. I have flown throughout the United States and to foreign countries. One country wanted me to stay longer and kept my crew hostage inside my B727 until the State Department got us released. I currently fly for Southwest Airlines based in Phoenix, Arizona.

Growing up in South Florida, and aviation, has given me a very unique perspective of this planet we live on. Flying had a lot to do with getting me started with my writing. I was asked one day to fly a Citation jet for a famous film director who was scouting locations in the Caribbean. I spent ten days with Sir Ridley Scott. It was a turning point for me. I had just started to put words to paper. The trip gave me an opportunity to discuss my writing with him. He encouraged me to write and after the trip even reviewed some of my work.

Around 2005, while flying to Orlando, I met a famous movie star onboard and we talked about writing. He and I became collaborators. I wrote a few screenplays. That took me into the Hollywood environment for several years where I learned more about the perspective and technical aspects of the film industry. I had a lot of fun, met a great many celebrities, and even appeared as an extra in “The Dukes” although the final edit only showed the back of my head…twice.

Since then, I have continued to fly and write. I self-publish my books through Amazon and have a great time doing so under my Fine Line Books. I’ve written short stories and have authored a true crime case study of “filicide” titled Through a Mother’s Eyes. And I have written four fictional crime stories. My Jake Roberts series includes: After the Evil, Mind Over Murder, and After the Goode. I also have a cybercrime thriller titled Stealing Atlanta. I am currently writing my next Jake Roberts novel, After the Kill.

In the past, I have also done voice-over commercials, performed a non-speaking role in an AAA travel commercial, and performed stand-up on open mike nights at Bonkerz in Orlando, Punchline and Funny Farm in Atlanta. I once represented the United States with comedy/magic at the Night of Magic in Bogota, Colombia.

My significant other has believed in me through all these years and I couldn’t have done any of it without her. She is still at my side every moment.

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