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Avanti (Joelene Stonehouse Thriller, #1)
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BOTM Past to Present > March 2019 BOTM: Avanti by Adam James

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message 1: by Adam (last edited Mar 01, 2019 11:06AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments AVANTI—ADAM JAMES

Thank you, Ruth, for featuring AVANTI: Joelene Stonehouse Thriller #1 as this month’s BOTM.

Joelene Stonehouse spent twenty-five years of her life flying Army attack helicopters in pretty much every American war zone. Joining up right after high school in 1990, she was just in time to fly a Blackhawk in the first Iraq invasion of 1991. After that, she mostly flew the Kiowa, her favorite, in operations in Kuwait, Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen and other locations through 2015, when she retired.

Her call-sign, AVANTI, means forward in Italian. After finding civilian life as a retiree a bit tame and boring for an “old gunfighter” — as she calls herself — her sister sets her up as a kind of independent courier / transporter, where she drives cargo all over the U.S., Mexico and Canada for an alliance of East Coast import / export operators.

Of course she realizes that her cargo is mostly drugs and drug money, but she also knows not to ask. Her timelines are tight and her journeys contain enough danger to keep her alert and always packing heat. Other than being hit on by numerous individuals she encounters along the way, the job is a piece of cake . . . right up to the beginning of our story, which opens on a lonely New Mexico highway in the middle of the night and the wailing of a police siren.

Joelene Stonehouse is a warrior who has faced life and conflict on her own terms over her entire life. After her parents were killed she and her younger sister were passed from cousin to aunt to friends of friends. Eventually, the two sisters completed their education in a state institution.

Joelene is not intended as a “representative” of any particular individual typology or social group. However, she certainly is a “loner” and mostly goes, does and says whatever she wants, while allowing the chips fall where they may.

It is my hope that you will find Joelene and her journey interesting at the very least.

Cheers and Happy Reading!
JIM in MT


Adam James | 36 comments Ruth wrote: "Oh Joelene! That opening scene, where she daredevils to outrun the police, had me on edge. The police car crashes, then she goes back to pull him out to safety.
That scene was so compelling!"


Now that opening scene is available for everyone to read FREE, along with the color graphics and a lively tune featuring sirens wailing away in the night. It's supposed to be the "hook." Whereupon you read it and then absolutely, positively gotta, gotta pony up the 99 cents to see what happens next.

Here's the link to the sample: http://adamjames.blackdogebooks.com/?...


Adam James | 36 comments Sorry to take so long making my appearance for this "lively" discussion here. To confess, I was sleeping. ZZZZZZZZZZ. While the rest of you bask in the warmth of Springtime, up here in Montana, we are in the grasp of winter's cold and blowing snow. No need worrying about the snow pack this year.

So yesterday I spent most of the day outside with my snowblower and trust shovels. I allowed my lower deck to freeze over to the point where there was at least three inches of ice covered by a foot of snow. Had to get out the trust pickaxe (also called a "Polaski" by the really old oldtimers). Now everything is clear. Well, except for the path to the composter and my Astronomical Observations Deck. I'll be out there again today.

But I will be checking in on this discussion to hear what you think of Joelene Stonehouse and her adventures.


Adam James | 36 comments The BOTM website is up and running now with links and a bunch of ancillary books for you to consider.

This month is WOMEN AT WAR MONTH! And I have added photos and stories about our warriors in action to the BOTM site. Check it out here: http://botm.blackdogebooks.com/


message 5: by Adam (last edited Mar 01, 2019 12:30PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments I just looked up Mule on Amazon. The dvd comes out on April 2 (my birthday). Sounds pretty interesting.
https://www.amazon.com/Mule-Dave-Bern...

Speaking of drugs and working for the Mob, the Netflix series Ozark is excellent. Here an entire family starts a money-laundering operation that seems to go from bad to worse. Here's a link to Ozark:
https://www.google.com/search?source=...

The third and last book in Don Winslow's trilogy has just been released. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07...


message 6: by Adam (last edited Mar 01, 2019 12:38PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Vets returning is really something. Back in 1969 I couldn't get a job washing used cars in the lot, supposedly because I had a moustache. Back then the common theme was "Psycho-Vets." Many writers "played" with that one to make a buck. I did find employment with the San Francisco Post Office delivering mail in Hunter's Point neighborhood. There I met many other returning vets who were hanging out with no jobs and spending their time playing chess.


Adam James | 36 comments My friend was a SEAL and had difficulties adjusting. There were no programs back than at all. You just sucked it up and kept going. Fortunately, his old commander encouraged him to get a degree in mathematics and database design. He relied on continual phone conversations with his old Team Six members.


Adam James | 36 comments When I see the old fellows with their Vet Caps I always stop and thank them and then ask if they were up in Chu Lai.


Adam James | 36 comments I think you get a real good look at Joelene's character when she returns to the scene of the crash to rescue the patrolman from his burning squad car. From there she continues to wear her singed and blackened "red" leather jacket. The thing probably stinks, but we can ignore that.


message 10: by Jim (last edited Mar 01, 2019 01:34PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Well, I am glad that first scene came off. And I am sure that Adam is pleased, too.

A few months back, I took a screenwriting class. I decided to adapt the first two chapters of AVANTI. This was quite an undertaking. However, it came off quite well. The instructor brought in three actors to do a reading. They knocked it outta the park. What a thrill to see these characters come to life like that. The guy who did Rollo, Vinny's uncle and Mob boss, was sensational picking up the dialogue. The woman who read Joelene was perfect. And she was probably close to 47, too.


message 11: by Anne (w/ an E) (last edited Mar 01, 2019 07:18PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Anne (w/ an E) (mzcatnthehat) | 96 comments I was going to finish my current book first but I am only halfway through it so I will finish it some other time and start reading this. It will have to be tomorrow because I want to get to bed early so I can get up early and shovel out the car. We are supposed to get around 5 inches total but it is supposed to snow until noon-ish. We are also supposed to get more snow Saturday and Sunday nights. Maybe I will get snowed in so I can get some reading done!


message 12: by Jim (last edited Mar 04, 2019 01:23PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments The "book" is a novella length. You could read it all on a long bus ride or short plane flight.

FREE CHAP ONE PREVIEW: http://adamjames.blackdogebooks.com/?...


Anne (w/ an E) (mzcatnthehat) | 96 comments Jim wrote: "The "book" is a novella length. You could read it all on a long bus ride or short plane flight.

FREE CHAP ONE PREVIEW: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Xn6I..."


Too bad I don't have anywhere to go on a bus or a plane... ;D


message 14: by Adam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Was kind of a joke, as I can't remember my last bus or plane ride. If You're into snow and dogsled rides, Montana is paradise, but you still gotta shovel the snow.


Anne (w/ an E) (mzcatnthehat) | 96 comments Yeah, I can't remember my last bus or plane ride, either. I'm not into snow too much but the dogsled ride sounds great. I will have plenty of snow to shovel here in RI, by tomorrow afternoon. I just think of it as good exercise. LOL


message 16: by Joseph (new)

Joseph DiFrancesco | 77 comments Yes, I think it’s fair to say that we don’t do enough to reintegrate our warriors back into day to day life.

During The Vietnam War, I remember stories of soldiers literally being yanked from the bush and brought back to their home town with muddy combat fatigues still on.

It’s no wonder PTSD has such a hold on these men and women. Maybe we need to look at the whole process in newly developed stages.


message 17: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Joseph wrote: "It’s no wonder PTSD has such a hold on these men and women. Maybe we need to look at the whole process in newly developed stages."

What continues to blow my mind is that some 45 years following Nam, PTSD still has a stigma attached to it. There are programs out there for Vets. One friend went to a private program in Napa, and they seem to have helped him. Still, if the country acknowledged this serious problem and kicked up the money and the experts, we would all be astounded at what it takes. Even so, I don't think it ever really goes away.


message 18: by Joseph (new)

Joseph DiFrancesco | 77 comments Agreed.


message 19: by Vickie (new)

Vickie Sarmina (iwrite0530) | 295 comments Jim - that is so true!! PTSD still holds such a label to it - and if these Vets were treated better and with respect - they might be more willing to seek the help they need!! There should be some serious monies allocated for our Vets for these services among other services!!


message 20: by Vickie (new)

Vickie Sarmina (iwrite0530) | 295 comments Hi Joe - just received my book in the mail today!! Thanks so much!! I love it!! 😁


message 21: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Over on the BOTM site it's Women At War Month. I've included some interesting articles and books for you to check out over there.
http://botm.blackdogebooks.com/


message 22: by Joseph (new)

Joseph DiFrancesco | 77 comments You bet, Vicki!


message 23: by Adam (last edited Mar 04, 2019 01:22PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Happy Sunday and congrats to the arrival of the new Space X vehicle (carrying a stuffed dummy) at the ISS!

Today I've added two more chapters to the FREE sample read of AVANTI.

Now the FIRST THREE CHAPTERS are in there. More to come! Check it out. Read it FREE online! Here's the link to the sample read: http://adamjames.blackdogebooks.com/?...


message 24: by Joseph (new)

Joseph DiFrancesco | 77 comments “Women at War Month.” Very cool. I’m liking the whole vibe. And congratulations, Adam, on nailing BOTM on GR!!


Jimmie | 194 comments Ruth wrote: "This coincides with the movie concept in Mule with Clint Eastwood. I thought about it while reading. He was forced to become a drug runner, unknowingly, but he did this out of desperation. Jolene d..."

Ruth, Mule was absolutely an amazing movie. I had no idea how deep the movie was going to be. It was so much more than just drug smuggling.

Jim, I look forward to reading your book. I will start reading the book next week.


message 26: by Adam (last edited Mar 06, 2019 07:52AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Thanks to Michele Rigby Assad, I just found out about a WWII spy named Virginia Hall--also know as the "Limping Lady." This American spy with one leg was at the top of the Nazi kill list.

I just added a bunch of links about her at the end of the Women At War section of this month's BOTM. Check it out: http://botm.blackdogebooks.com/


message 27: by Anne (w/ an E) (last edited Mar 06, 2019 10:46PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Anne (w/ an E) (mzcatnthehat) | 96 comments Ruth wrote: "I’m in Texas. I haven’t seen snow in three years. I miss it. But not to your extent."

We actually got a foot of snow, and most of it is still piled up on the side of the roads and parking lots. I got lots of "exercise" digging out the elderly neighbors' SUV! (:


message 28: by Adam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Well, Joelene always thought she had her eyes open . . . up until she sees Vinny big as life sitting in the coffee shop window seat. This is what happens. Two years sitting around painting pictures of farm animals in the civilian world and the awareness and attention get rusty. So this moment in the coffee shop is a real eye-opener for her.

For those who haven't read the FREEEE preview on the BOTM site, Joelene had already put Vinny on a plane back to NJ after rescuing him in the Montana snowstorm. Well, we know how that played out with his Uncle Rollo once Vinny swaggered into the room back home all full of himself.

Outta spite, Joelene pops a tire on Vinny's NJ Caddie, once she's free and clear and outside in the parking lot. At this point, she's back on full alert and ready for everything to go South (no offense to y'all down thar) in a hurry. Which, of course, it does!

I'll be posting a couple more FREEEE chapters on the BOTM as soon as I finish my late lunch, after shoveling us out once again!!

Cheers!


Jimmie | 194 comments I'm half way through Avani. I was hooked right from the start. This book is so visually appealing. The diner scene with the interesting waitress was really good. She seems like someone that could really tell some stories.


message 30: by Adam (new) - rated it 5 stars

Adam James | 36 comments Jimmie wrote: "I'm half way through Avani. I was hooked right from the start. This book is so visually appealing. The diner scene with the interesting waitress was really good. She seems like someone that could r..."

Woo-Hoo! Gotcha!


Jimmie | 194 comments I finished Avanit and posted my review on Goodreads. If you have not read this book yet, you are missing out on a great treat. Jim, you really did a great job with Avanti. I enjoyed the additions of pictures in the book. That helped to paint the scenes.

My favorite character in the book was the waitress. She was a really interesting character and I felt she was the glue that kept the story going.


message 32: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Oh my, the poor waitress!


message 33: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Okay, Pi Day is only three days away. Where will you get your Pi? I'll be eating my Pi @ Bernice's Bakery right here in MSLA! 3.14 Don't miss it!😃


Anne (w/ an E) (mzcatnthehat) | 96 comments I am planning to make my own Pi on Wednesday, the day before.


message 35: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments She'll have her Pi and eat it, too. Take a pix of your Pi and email it to adamjameswriter1@gmail.com and we'll post 'em!😉


Jimmie | 194 comments I will have my Pi in the Pi, the Philippines. Happy Pi day adventures to all of my Goodreads buddies.


message 37: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Send in a pix of your Pi and we'll post 'em on the Thursday Pi Post on the BOTM. SEND UR PI PIX TO: adamjameswriter1@gmail.com


message 38: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments Woo-Hoo! There's Pi pix om the BOTM! www.botm.blackdogebooks.com


message 39: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim Crocker | 295 comments You red leather jacket needs fringe along the backs of the arms. 😀


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