I’m delighted to welcome back my guest today – Gary Corbin, author of Lying in Vengeance, the follow-up to the award-winning courtroom thriller, Lying in Judgment. You can read my recent interview with Gary about the book here. However, I’m pleased to say that today I have an extract from Lying in Vengeance to bring you.
About the Book
Peter Robertson, 33, once fought a man on a remote forested road and left him to die. Six months later, he served on the jury that freed a wrongfully accused man—and let his own secret slip to a beautiful but manipulative fellow juror, Christine Nielsen. Two months later, Christine wakes him in the middle of the night with a threat: kill Kyle, the man who stalks and abuses her, or have his own murderous past exposed. Peter pretends to go along as he seeks another, less violent solution, and his best friend Frankie threatens to expose the conspiracy to the police. But Kyle makes his move, breaking into her house in the middle of the night and then later kidnapping her at gunpoint. Peter’s daring rescue gives him the opportunity to fulfil her request—and he walks away, consequences be damned. The next morning, Kyle turns up dead, and the police arrest Frankie, of all people. Peter knows he’s innocent, but can he prove it without directing the finger of blame at himself—for both murders?
Format: eBook (281 pp.), paperback (306 pp.) Publisher: Double Diamond Publishing Published: 13th September 2017 Genre: Thriller
Extract: Lying in Vengeance by Gary Corbin
Peter Robertson bolted upright in his darkened bedroom, awakened by Santana blasting “Black Magic Woman” on scratchy, poorly-amplified speakers. Why, he wondered in his melatonin-aided stupor, would an aging seventies band break into his ninety-year-old Portland bungalow and wake him at this hour? And why on such awful sound equipment?
Something lit his bedside table with a flickering glare. His stupid cell phone. That meant bad news. He rolled across the queen-size mattress, found the phone, and held it to his ear. “Christine?” he said. It kept playing music. Dammit! He pushed the answer button, and the music stopped.
“Well, good morning, Sunshine,” she said, all chipper and happy. She sounded like she’d been up for hours, probably drinking double espressos and scheduling Twitter messages to promote her various clients’ brands. “Have you missed me?”
“Do you know what time it is?” He propped two pillows up against the headboard and sagged into them. Closing his eyes didn’t help. He only imagined every detail of her pretty face in front of him, from the thin, black eyebrows and long lashes to her brilliant smile, bright red lipstick and perfect sun-bronzed skin. He opened his eyes again and stared into the blackness. A faint glow seeped in through the edges of blackout curtains covering the window across the room. Beautiful or not, he did not welcome this call from her, regardless of the hour.
“It’s breakfast time in New York,” she said. “Which means it’s mid-morning for you. About nine-fifteen, right?”
“Try three-fifteen.” Peter rubbed his temples with his free hand. “You got the time change backwards.”
“Oh, silly me,” she said. “I’m sorry.” She didn’t sound the slightest bit sorry. He even thought he heard her laugh. Typical Christine. She loved making his life miserable, in so many ways. Like making sleep next to impossible. She managed that even without three a.m. phone calls.
“Well, now that you’re up, let’s get that dinner planned that we talked about—what was it, a month ago now?”
“You’re so right. Time does fly when we’re busy, doesn’t it?”
Peter scowled and turned onto his side. Monday morning was earning its awful reputation. “Christine, what do you want?”
“I just told you. I want you to buy me dinner.”
“I’ll mail you a gift certificate to Arby’s tomorrow. Good night.”
“Don’t you dare hang up on me!”
Peter’s finger paused an inch above the end call button. Even with the phone held a foot in front of his face, he heard her throaty warning with perfect, chilling clarity. He sighed and returned the phone to his ear. “I’m still here.”
“Good.” Amazing how her voice could transform from dark and dangerous to soft and sexy without missing a beat. “I thought we could go back to Pazzo’s, for old times’ sake. Remember our first date there? You were so nervous.”
“It wasn’t a date. We had lunch. And it wasn’t our first anything. We’d had lunch together before.” He adjusted the pillows behind him. Suddenly he couldn’t get comfortable.
“Yes, but at Pazzo’s, you paid, like a gentleman, courting the object of his desire.”
“I was not—” He stopped himself. To be honest, he had been courting her—at the time. And he had to admit, he’d enjoyed her company. Maybe he was judging her too quickly. Maybe she really did want to date him after all. “How about someplace new?”
After a beat, she countered, “A place we’ve never been…? Say, perhaps, Florentino’s?”
His blood froze in his veins. He’d known, deep down, as soon as he gave her the opening, she’d remind him of the restaurant where, eight months before, he’d followed Marcia, now his ex-wife, and her lover. That foolish decision triggered events that changed—ruined!—his whole life. The scene of, if not the crime per se, at least where it all had been set in motion. The fancy restaurant where the victim of the crime worked, a man named Alvin Dark—a man whom Peter had never met before that terrible night. The victim whom Peter had later mistaken for his wife’s secret lover. The man he’d confronted, beaten, and—
“S’matter? Cat got your tongue?”
He shook himself out of the foul memory. “No. Not there. Not Florentino’s.” His hoarse voice took him aback, increasing the chill spreading across his naked body despite the summer heat. “I’m never going back there.”
“Fine. I tell you what. Surprise me. I’ll be back in town later this week. Pick me up at my office Thursday at six.”
“Thursday I have plans.”
Her voice grew hard. “Make new plans.”
She hung up without saying goodbye.
Intrigued? You’ll have to buy the book to find out what happens next…
About the Author
Gary Corbin is a writer, actor, and playwright in Camas, WA, a suburb of Portland, OR. Lying in Vengeance continues the story begun in his debut novel, Lying in Judgment, released in March, 2016. Lying in Judgment, a courtroom thriller about a man who serves on the jury of a murder trial for the crime he committed, was selected as Bookworks.com “Book of the Week” for July 11-18, 2016, and was the feature novel on Literary Lightbox’s “Indie Spotlight” in February 2017. Gary’s second novel, The Mountain Man’s Dog, came out in June 2016. The sequel, The Mountain Man’s Bride, was released in February 2017.
An award-winning playwright, several of his plays have been produced in the Portland, OR area, some of them multiple times. In addition to his own scripts, Gary writes, ghost-writes, and edits scripts. He specializes in tight, realistic dialogue involving sharply drawn, interesting characters in complex relationships. As well as writing and editing for private sector, government, individuals, and not-for-profit clients, his creative and journalistic work has been published in BrainstormNW, the Portland Tribune, The Oregonian, and Global Envision, among others.
A home brewer as well as a maker of wine, mead, cider, and soft drinks, Gary is a member of the Oregon Brew Crew and a BJCP National Beer Judge. He loves to ski, cook, and garden, and hopes someday to train his dogs to obey.
Connect with Gary