Monday, April 5, 2010

Today's Special Guest, Romance Author Lorrie Unites-Struiff

Please welcome my very special guest today, romance author Lorrie Unites-Struiff.

 Hello Tabs,

Thank you for having me here today. I’m honored to appear on such a talented author’s site.

I’m basically a short story writer. Gypsy Crystal is the first long work I have ventured into but it will not be the last. Since writing Gypsy was so much fun, I have a ton of ideas floating around in my brain cells.

How about a woman sheriff who has to deal with androids and find her uncle’s killer?

How about Winnie Krapski, an over middle-age woman who receives the gift of spook-speaking that she doesn’t want, a Call on the Dead (COD) anthology of her funny misadventures?

When I wrote Gypsy Crystal, I wanted a fast moving thriller with a touch of all the right ingredients. I stirred in a bit of gypsy custom and lore, added a dash of romance with a yummy hunk, and then spiced it up with a little paranormal twist.

Let me offer a blurb,

Rita Moldova’s best-kept secret, a crystal amulet that shows her the last image a victim had seen when they died and has helped propel her career as a homicide detective – until prostitutes start dropping.

A ritual killer dubbed the Ripper by the media is terrorizing her town and it’s Rita’s job to help end his killing spree. The problem – Rita’s mystical amulet, passed down through her Roma bloodline, has failed for the first time in memory to do its job – and it’s making it a real bitch for Rita to do hers.

To make matters worse, the FBI has sent in hunky agent, Matt Boulet, to lead the case – and Rita finds herself attracted to him.

When Rita visits her mother – a gifted seer in her own right – and her uncle to glean what she can about the history of the amulet and the lore of their clan, she learns much more than she bargained for, and the truth is too much for her to swallow.

As the investigation continues, Rita learns she can’t deny the lore of the ancients, or her growing feelings for Matt Boulet.


Reading is my hobby, writing is my passion.

When my husband and I stroll in the mall and pass a book store, he gives me the evil eye and says, “I’ll give you ten minutes in there.”

What is ten minutes in a candy store? I mean, really?

An hour later, when I emerge, I usually have to hunt the mall for him. I don’t understand why, I was only in the book store for ten minutes, or so it seemed. Time does have a habit of getting away from me when surrounded by the thought that I would like to purchase one of every book I see. Oh, if only the pocketbook could afford it. If I worked in a bookstore, I’d be a threat. I would never bring home a paycheck.

Writing, on the other hand, does keep my visits to the bookstore to a less often occurrence, which my husband is profoundly grateful. He never uses a computer so doesn’t have a clue about online ordering. Shhh! Let’s not tell him. Or about pdf downloads. We’ll keep it our secret while my “To Be Read” pile keeps growing.

Here is an excerpt from Gypsy Crystal I hope you will enjoy.

A piercing scream echoed from the alley between Red’s Bar and The Totem Pole. Adrenaline shot through her veins. Jesus, it’s the Ripper!

Rita yelled for Sully, folded her fingers around the Glock in her purse, and headed toward the mouth of the dark alleyway. She bent low near the entrance, then eased around the corner. A cat yowled, then leaped to the ledge above her head. Rita jerked and flattened her back against the cold bricks of the building. Tiny feet scurried across her shoe. She gasped and kicked out her foot. The glare of headlights behind her swept the overflowing garbage cans, creating a macabre dance of shadow and light against the walls. Brakes squealed. A car door opened. She didn’t turn to look, instead she hugged the rough bricks and slid further into the alley’s depth hoping to spot the Ripper. Quickly, she hunkered down behind a trashcan, the rancid smell of old grease turned her stomach.

“I’m here,” Sully said, crouching behind his open door, the car’s headlights left on. “Wait, Rita. Boulet told us not to go it alone.” Sully tipped a flashlight beam around his door to sweep over the trashcans, the brick walls, and then his light flashed on the green dumpster twenty feet ahead on the left. He lowered the beam to the cement. A woman’s bare legs protruded from behind the large green bin.

Rita’s eyes darted from side to side, watching for any slight movement in the shadows. Nothing. Every nerve in her body strung tight, she bent low to approach the dumpster.

Tires skidded behind Sully’s car. A door opened, and running footsteps approached her. A firm hand folded over her pistol while the other held her arm in a vice-like grip. She yanked away, spun, and looked up into heated eyes. “Don’t ever hold onto my gun arm like that again.”

“Then next time follow orders,” said Matt.


I live in West Mifflin, Pennsylvania. Many of the locations I wrote about in Gypsy are copied from the areas around me. I used false names of course, but if anyone from my county reads the book, I’m sure they’ll recognize a few spots.

The quaint old century mall I used is now torn down to the foundation. The river road is real and just as scary as in the book. Not for the faint of heart.

Gypsy Crystal is available at Amazon, Fictionwise and Eternal Press for kindle and e-book readers. Print copies should be available any day now.

All the reviews I have received so far are winners. Check out the reviews and buy sites on my website.


Maggie Dove said...

Great excerpt, Lorie. Your book sounds like a must read!!!!


Marva said...

I'll testify to Gypsy Crystal's and Lorrie's coolness.

I got to read the book while it was WIP. Lorrie didn't tell me to go away, so I hope I helped some toward its success!

Congrats, Lorrie!

lizB said...

Hi Lorrie,
Great excerpt. Thanks for sharing. I saw you made the top ten on Eternal, also. Congratulations!


maria said...

Gypsy Crystal is definitely a must read. This is the first time I've read anything in the paranormal field. Romance isn't even my thing (at least, in book form). But I was hooked from the beginning.

And I really like all the Gypsy customs that are sprinkled through the book.

Lorrie Unites-Struiff has a winner here. And a committed fan. I want to see more of Gypsy.

Love your description of the lure of bookstores, Lorrie. Too funny.

Saludos, Maria

Dave Cushing said...

Gypsy Crystal is a great read for both male and female readers. It has a little bit of everything tossed with enough spice to satisfy anyone's appetite. Lorrie was kind enough to let me read her tale of family, supernatural, and romance. I really enjoyed it and recommend it highly to anyone who loves to read a good story.

Lorrie said...

Thank you all for your wonderful comments. You're making me blush here. See my red face?

I am thrilled you enjoyed the story. It was a fun, wild ride writing it as many of you know.

So nice of all of you to stop by.

Anonymous said...

Gypsy Crystal is a book everyone has to read. It's got everything, romance, mystery, horror and a serial killer.

Congrats again, Lorrie on a job well done.


Darla said...

Hey Lorrie,

Great excerpt! Oooh, lots of tension.
Loved the Roma lure, mystery, romance, suspense...yep, this one has it all!
I'm still anxiously awaiting the release of the paperback.

Hey, anytime you want to go to the bookstore, give me a call. You'll never hear me say, "You've got 10 minutes." Though, you may have to search the bookstore for me. :)

Congrats on making the top 10 on Eternal Press!


turdpolisher said...

Rita rocks.

Margaret West said...

I like the Gypsy lure premise of your book Lorrie.

Great interview.

Cate Masters said...

Congrats on the release of Gypsy Crystal! Sounds like a great read. Love that cover too.
I have the same weakness for bookstores, and online ordering... if only I had a clone to read so I could keep writing!
Wishing you much success.

Darla said...

Oooh, a clone. Great idea, Cate. If you ever figure that one out, let me know. There aren't enough hours in the day for me to get half the stuff I want done.

I made a fubar, it's lore not lure.
Where's Spellcheck whan I need it? Can I spell stoopid? lol

Again, great job, Lorrie!

Kelly A. Harmon said...

Loved the excerpt. Consider Gypsy Crystal on my TBR pile! Kelly

Lorrie said...

Thank you all for dropping by. I hope to see you again on my next guest blog spot.

Thank you so much for hosting me, Tab's.

I have to say, Tab's, your novels are super. Love the voices and the humor. Kudos.

Anonymous said...