Wednesday, September 4, 2013

VBT - Speakeasy by A.M Dunnewin

Historical Fiction / Thriller
Date Published: December 26, 2011

The novella is centered on Eddie Durante, owner of a speakeasy that's supported by Eddie's mobster uncle, the boss of the Durante family. The back story is that Eddie is a young widower after his family's rival, the Caprice family, murdered his wife over a territory dispute. After devising a plan that retaliated against four of the rivaling capos, Eddie is left with the daunting task to try and move on, until a family member notifies him that the Caprices have put a hit man in the speakeasy - and Eddie's name is on the list. But things take an unexpected turn when Eddie and his close friends start to find the dead bodies of Eddie’s relatives, the ones who had helped in the retaliation.
     Behind the backdrop of the jazz music and glistening flappers, murder after murder begins to unravel as revenge takes center stage, and Eddie soon learns that some secrets can’t be taken to the grave.


Marcus and Anthony’s voices trailed into Eddie’s ears, but he tried to ignore their chatter by looking the other way. He scanned the area to the left of him where booths hugged the far wall, wrapped in shadows so private parties or couples could enjoy the speakeasy without being noticed. He squinted a bit, and saw from the way the dark silhouettes were positioned that people were enjoying the seclusion right then, mainly gangsters, he could only assume. 
Assume. Eddie tried not to laugh. He knew gangsters were over there, plotting things he had no interest in. He stared at one of the booths where bellowing cigar smoke escaladed from the shadows, revealing that more than one person was seated there.
That’s when he caught sight of the single trail of smoke coming from the corner. It was a faint trail of grayish white, protruding from the darkness in a slow, rolling manner. Eddie squinted a bit to see if he could make out a shadow or silhouette like he had already done, but was suddenly jolted from his activity when he felt a hand pat against his shoulder.

A. M. Dunnewin inherited her love for mysteries and thrillers from her family, which helped her pursue a BA in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice. Although her stories cover a wide range of genres, she primarily writes historical fiction and thrillers. An avid reader at heart, she's also a passionate collector of both antique books and graphic novels. She lives in Sacramento, California.


1)      First, tell us about yourself – where you live, your family, and those sorts of details.

I was born and raised in Sacramento, California. I graduated from California State University Sacramento with a BA in Psychology and a minor in Criminal Justice. I grew up watching and reading mysteries and thrillers, which is why my stories usually possess those two elements. 

2)      How long have you been writing?

I've been writing ever since I started learning to write, though I wasn't serious about it until after high school. I had written a couple full stories in college, but I was always stuck in the editing phases so they never felt done to me. It wasn't until I wrote Speakeasy that I finally finished one.

3)      Do you have a favorite place to write?

Usually in my room. I can write pretty much anywhere, but my best ideas usually take place at night.

4)      Why did you decide to write Speakeasy?

I had decided to write Speakeasy mainly because I'd always wanted to write a story based on one night in a speakeasy during Prohibition. It had always been a theme floating in the back of my mind, and then one day the characters showed up, and it was smooth sailing after that.

5)      Who is your favorite character in your book and why?

I'd have to say Anthony, because he's so charismatic as a character and hilarious. He was a lot of fun to write about. I would want to say Eddie, but I knew about his fate from the beginning and didn't want to get too attached.

6)      How about your least favorite character?  What makes them less appealing to you?

I actually couldn't stand Joe. He was a great idea in the beginning, but then by the end of the scene with him being awkward and creepy, I felt the same way the gangsters did. Joe had to go.

7)      Do you proofread/edit your own books or do you get someone to do that for you?

I proofread and edit my own books, but I always get other opinions. I mainly turn to my best friend/fellow writer Gina Scott, whose honesty I've come to rely on. And, of course, my mother. Whenever she proofread my papers in school I'd always get A's, so I figure that's good enough for my novels (plus she's going to read them regardless).

8)      What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Catch up on my stacks of books and graphic novels, listen to music, or watch movies.  

9)      Do you read much and if so who are your favorite authors?

I love reading, and I especially love classic literature. My go to books are usually by Edgar Allen Poe, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and Alexandre Dumas. With graphic novels, anything that has Dick Grayson or Starfire in it. I'm really enjoying the New 52 Nightwing, and Red Hood and the Outlaws.

10)   What question do you wish that someone would ask about your book, but nobody has? Write it out here, then answer it.

A question I haven't been asked is, "Would you write a sequel to Speakeasy: A Novella?"

My answer would be that it's currently in the works. I have two different story lines in mind where some of the characters who made it out of the speakeasy alive make future appearances.

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