New York Times bestselling author Laura Griffin started her career in journalism before venturing into the world of romantic suspense. Her books have won numerous awards, including a 2010 RITA (Whisper of Warning) and a 2010 Daphne du Maurier Award (Untraceable). Visit her online at her website www.lauragriffin.com or on Facebook.
The Story Behind the Story
I started my career as a newspaper reporter, so I’m a big believer in doing some legwork before sitting down to write a word. Some people call this “research” or “procrastination.” For me, it’s a little of both and an important part of my writing process.
One of the best parts of being a writer is that it gives me an excuse to do interviews. Over the years I’ve had a chance to interview all sorts of people who later became characters in my books: Navy SEALs, FBI agents, artists, crime scene techs, anthropologists. Once I actually interviewed a fingerprint expert, which would have been a fairly routine, except that the guy was standing there holding a glove made of human skin as we talked. I found this to be a bit distracting. But as with all good interviews, I learned something. (In this case, it was that once a body reaches a certain stage of decomp, the skin slips off like a glove and can be used by a skilled technician to recover prints for identification purposes.)
Not all of the research I do has such a high gross-out factor. Some of it is really fun. There was the time I jumped out of an airplane in Tennessee. This experience inspired the skydiving scene in my second book, One Wrong Step. One of my most memorable research excursions was visiting the FBI Academy at Quantico. There, I had a chance to meet dozens of interesting people who would later answer my pesky story questions. I also got to tromp around the grounds and visit Hogan’s Alley, where special agent trainees practice making arrests. The highlight of the trip was learning to shoot a Glock on the FBI firearms range.
My latest book Snapped opens with a sniper scene, so I interviewed an array of law enforcement experts before writing the story. A police sniper gave me some tips on SWAT tactics that helped me pack the opening pages with as much tension as possible. This book is a romantic suspense--a mystery intertwined with a love story. This book is especially close to my heart, and I hope readers will connect with it, too.
SOPHIE BARRETT THINKS SHE’S LUCKY TO BE ALIVE. SHE MAY BE DEAD WRONG.Title: Snapped (Tracers #4)
On a sweltering summer afternoon, Sophie Barrett walks into a nightmare. A sniper has opened fire on a college campus. When the carnage is over, three people—plus the shooter—are dead and dozens more are injured. Sophie escapes virtually unscathed. Yet as details emerge from the investigation, she becomes convinced that this wasn’t the random, senseless act it appeared to be. No one wants to believe her—not the cops, not her colleagues at the Delphi Center crime lab, and definitely not Jonah Macon, the homicide detective who’s already saved her life once.
Jonah has all kinds of reasons for hoping Sophie is mistaken. Involving himself with a key witness could derail an already messy investigation, not to mention jeopardize his career. But Sophie is as determined and fearless as she is sexy. If he can’t resist her, he can at least swear to protect her. Because if Sophie is right, she’s made herself the target of a killer without a conscience. And the real terror is only just beginning. . . .
Author: Laura Griffin
Paperback: 432 pages
Publisher: Simon &amp; Schuster, 2011
Purchase at IndieBound, Amazon, The Book Depository
Source: Pocket Books
Laura Griffin's Snapped is fast and tightly-paced, and will have you at the edge of your seat. I couldn't put it down--from the first shot to the very last page, because I just had to find out who the bad guys are and what the deal was.
I really liked Sophie--she doesn't make excuses for herself or her past, and she's not going to sit back and wait for someone else to fix the problem. She charges in with her charm and her brains, and actually manages to dig up stuff that the cops hadn't looked into. Now to get the cops to pay attention to that...
Jonah is a good guy--and true to typical romance-novel hero typecasting. He's gorgeous (of course), stubborn (*rolls eyes*), and does his utmost to keep Sophie safe--including from herself. Which means that he'll take her information and then tuck her back under lock and key until he has time to get answers. Which is so not how Sophie works.
Of course, that means that their interactions come with lots of sparks, which means this book is not only suspenseful, but fun to read as well. Fans of romantic suspense will love Snapped.
drey's rating: Excellent!
Have you read Snapped? What did you think? And if you haven't, here's your chance to win a copy!
Boy oh boy, do I have a giveaway for you to enter! Laura has very graciously offered up a $25 Amazon gift card to one lucky duck. And thanks to the publisher, I have one copy of Snapped for you, too! This one's for US residents only. To enter, fill out the form below. Good luck!