Dan Landis is a private investigator used to peeping in windows and taking awkward pictures to make a buck. This winter, to make a few more, he agreed to help out a local department store by taking a job in their Loss Prevention department. Boring right? Wrong.A local jewelry store gets robbed and then the bodies start piling up. Red suited, fur trimmed, white bearded bodies. And Dan's the one who keeps showing up at all the wrong places. It won't be long before Dan is spending the holiday behind bars if he can't figure this one out. *amazon.com*
What a quirky and ecentric character Mims has created in the form of Dan Landis, as if 5 dead Santas wasn't intriguiging enough (yes FIVE!). Well thought out and executed storyline, a little slow to start for me but, once Mims found his footing it was a fast ride. I thought I was at the end at one point then noticed I still had several dozen pages to go, hmmmmm... love it when a book throws a twist in there on me.
There is also an underlying story there, between Dan and Abbey, an innocent little romance blossoming. Will this little blossum be torn to shreds with the prospect of Abbey working with Dan? Will Dan be able to stop the Santa killings? You'll just have to grab your own copy and see!
My interest is piqued; I anxiously await the next installment in this gritty little crime series (The Cult of Koo Kway out September 18th). I give this one 4/5 but, that's just my two cents.
Jay Mims lives about two miles past nowhere, after you turn off the paved road. When he's not catching up on episodes of Scarecrow and Mrs. King he writes, mainly to stave off boredom. In addition to somewhat eclectic tastes in television and movies, Jay reads voraciously.
He enjoys compelling stories with strong characters, and will gladly read anything from comic books to Steam Punk, Harlequin romance to Kenneth C. Davis' fantastic history books. Jay enjoys long walks through the countryside, laughing with friends, and learning to draw something better than stick figures.
His dearest ambition is to personally thank Janet Evanovich for proving that fast talking characters can be charming and goofy simultaneously.
Now you know I had to get inside this guys head! Thanks so much to Author Jay Mims in association with Staccato Publishing for making this Blog Tour possible. Here is my Interview with Mr. Mims (contest details to follow).
*Tell me a bit about yourself.
Well, I’m a writer by night. By day Iteach Communications. I always tell my fellow writers: NEVER QUIT YOUR DAY JOB! Unless you’re making Scrooge McDuck levels of money, in which case you’ll just be spending all your leisure time swimming in your giant money bin.
*Where were you born and where do you call home?
I’m originally from Upstate SC, up near Greenville? Anytime I mention I’m from South Carolina, I just say “Yeah, it’s near Charleston.” But, it’s actually not too far from Charleston. I live in a nice hub between Charlotte, Atlanta, Charleston and Greenville. Which is to say all of South Carolina. And I hope to at some point visit South of the Border. As a Palmetto State native, I’ve never been to that particular attraction, the equivalent of NYC denizens having never visited the Statue of Liberty. If the Statue were a giant sombrero, and there were 17 million billboards advertising its wares.
*Who was your inspiration for DanLandis?
That’s a good question…The character himself was an amalgam of every detective arch type, but at the same time, I wanted to have someone you could party with. However, I think if David Tennant and Barney from “How I Met Your Mother” had a lovechild, and it was raised by Shawn from “Psych” then that would be Dan. Or a really messed up baby. Or both.
*For those who are unfamiliar with yournovel; The Five Santas, how would you introduce it?
“The Five Santas” is a happy-go-lucky mystery about a down on his luck detective who stumbles across the body of Santa. Not THE Santa, but a street corner Santa. Comedy ensues. It’s a murder mystery that is all about love, family, murder, and the importance of a thoughtful gift.
*What are the Pro's and Con's to being apublished Author?
I’d say the major Pro is that you have a creative outlet, the chance to create an entire universe, and the opportunity to be a story teller. Stories have a way of affecting people that can’t be duplicated, and a well told story can always get beneath our defenses. It’s also nice to be able to pour bits of yourself into the work, to discover things that you never realized.
Of course, the Con is that not everyone is going to like your work. It’s always important to have the healthy perspective that “Hey, I don’t like everything. Why should they be different?”Of course, it’s also important to know that not everything you do is golden. There will be some flawed elements, and even though you may find a “Coupling” reference funny, not everyone will agree.
*What was the first thing you did when you got the news you were being published?
There may have been some serious jumping up and down. I’ll take you to one better. When Heather, chief Poobah over at Staccato (my publisher) called to tell me that Barnes and Noble had picked up my book? That was the moment where I felt like a real author. That was the moment when I called everyone I knew. I still smile thinking about that moment.
*Whom in your life would you say has influenced you the most?
Everyone? Ha, no my parents have been a huge influence. I get a lot of my balance and strong personality from my Mom, but I get my storytelling and in a lot of ways my sense of humor from my Dad.
*What has been the most interesting comment (or review) about your book?
The most interesting? Probably when onereviewer called my character development “radiant”. I kind of want to put that up somewhere. Maybe not as an ego wall, but just as something I can turn to when I get to feeling frustrated.
*Who is YOUR favorite Author?
Terry Pratchett! Hands down, Sir Terry is amazing, and I love his books tremendously. He has a way of developing the characters, and telling the story in such a way that everything in the universe feels connected. Plus, he’s just really funny. And moving at the same time. I would put “THIS IS NOT MY COW!” as one of the best fighting anthems ever.
*What are you reading right now?
Two books: I’m reading “Fool Moon” by Jim Butcher, which is the second book in the Dresden Files series, and “Bourne Ultimatum” by Robert Ludlum. It just occurred to me that I’m reading the second book in two completely different series. Now I just need a double breasted suit, bowler hat, and twin henchman! Sorry, had a Batman villain moment.
*Tell us your latest news
The absolute latest? I’m continuing work on the third book in the “Oncoming Storm” quartet within this series, which is called “The Gray Ghost Inn”. It’s a traditional murder mystery set at an honest to goodness Bed and Breakfast. I feel like I’m channeling Agatha Christie, and might have Dan use his “little gray cells.”
I’m also working on the screenplay for “The Five Santas”, which I hope to have done here soon. I’m wanting to be done with as much writing as possible, because I want to write the fourth book, “Chasing The Storm” for NaNoWriMo. Because I’m nothing if not ambitious