A few years ago I was reading some current suspense, and it started to rub me the wrong way.
I thought about the kind of suspense I really enjoy. A lot of them classics, published in the 40's and 50's. Then there's film noir, my favorite film genre. Think of Robert Mitchum in a trench coat and fedora, or Bogart with the black bird.
All these explore the territory that interests me most--dark corners of the human heart, the moral order and the search for justice in a hard world.
With plenty of suspense thrown in.
Somehow these books and movies managed to get at the human condition without the gratuitous elements we see so much of today. I sense there's a big audience out there is getting tired of that in their fiction.
They still want a good read, a thrill ride, their suspense tough and gritty with lots of twists and turns. But they don't want all the offensive elements.
That's how Try Dying was born. I've always wanted to do a suspense series that hits the mean streets, with a tough, witty hero and lots of action. And delivers a commentary on our times. That's what the best crime fiction has always done.
Growing up in Los Angeles, and living here still, I've been handed perhaps the greatest suspense landscape ever. My books will be full of the authentic detail readers of modern thriller love, with insights into police work and the criminal justice system.
I also wanted to chronicle the inner journey of a character over a number of books. The Try Dying series will let me take more time with my lead character, Ty Buchanan, as he goes from successful lawyer to hunted man to finding new reasons to carry on. The readers will get connected to him, and pull for him all the way.
In each book, Buchanan will be helped by two characters readers will fall in love with--a fallen priest and basketball playing nun who become Buchanan's closest friends in the world.
Together, they will fight, through the law -- and sometimes around the law -- to bring justice to those who deserve it.