I may have had a little too much fun with this one, gang. But allow me to be serious for a moment. I've read a lot of books and know firsthand, there's a lot of talent in this biz. As for Operation Sheba, the author did her homework and honed her craft. I couldn't put this book down. Please welcome Author Misty Evans.
I recently completed Operation Sheba, and as I reached the last page, something the author said in the prologue made sense. The hook that led to chapter one summed up the way I was feeling. "Something's off."
Exactly. I wasn't buying it. Not the book -- the author's claim of being a happily married mother of twins, with a degree in marketing, who just happens to write suspense.
And I'm a size 2.
I knew who she was -- a highly trained operative who said she wrote this book by doing research. Step into my interrogation room while we have a little chat with Ms. Misty Evans and I do my best to break her.
D.B. Good morning, Misty. Thanks for coming down. Are you comfortable? Can I get you a cup of coffee?
M.E. I'd love a cup, black, please. Would you like me to check your coffee maker for bugs while I'm here?
D.B. Are you insinuating I might have bugged the coffee pot? A little paranoid, aren't you? This is a friendly chat, Ms. Evans. Besides it's also a blog and the coffee's a figment of our imagination. So, Misty, if that's really your name, when did you leave the CIA?
M.E. I don't know what you're talking about.
D.B. Don't you? I read the book. You talk about GPS chips, a shadow CIA, infared laser trip wires. You talk about glamorous international places and revolve it around a sexy and riveting plot. So let's cut to the chase. This book's in code; the question is who are you trying to market it to?
M.E. Who else? To people who love to read action/adventure, intrigue and suspense.
D.B. Not North Korea?
M.E. Er...exactly how much coffee did you drink this morning?
D.B. The coffee's imaginary. Stay with me. So you claim you did research. What else?
M.E. I'm not sure what you mean.
D.B. You didn't consult experts?
M.E. Well, I did use a few sources.
D.B. Aha! Did any of them start with double 00--?
M.E. No. But I have watched a few of his movies.
D.B. [Interrogator stares off dreamily] That new James Bond does have an amazing body.
M.E. Personally, I prefer his gadgets.
D.B. Exactly! You use so many in Operation Sheba. For instance, the lady bug mike. That was only one of the things that tipped me off. Knowing precisely what the device would and wouldn't stick to. How could you possibly know this?
M.E. My ten-year-old son bought one at Target.
D.B. Recruiting your own son?!!
M.E. Best to start em young, mold their minds, brainwash them so they fold their own socks.
D.B. This is getting us nowhere; let's talk about the Farm. You depict the training of CIA operatives so well, I felt like I was crawling beside them. You talk about the weapons they use, the chain of command, the intricacies of the Agency. How would a normal civilian know anything about this?
M.E. By Farm, are you referring to the CIA's training camp?
D.B. You tell me.
M.E. I told you. I did a ton of research. Besides although the training camp used to be quite secretive, it isn't any longer. It's located near Williamsburg, Virginia.
D.B. You drove right to it?
M.E. Actually, I used Google satellite maps.
D.B. You expect me to believe you used Google to write this edge-of-your-seat suspense?
M.E. No. Basically I read everything the CIA unclassified for the past 15 to 20 years. Anything they blacked out, I simply substituted with my imagination.
D.B. [Interrogator scribbles in notebook...she's almost convincing.] Let's talk about your characters, Julia, aka Abigail Quinn, Conrad and Michael. These characters are so well drawn, such risk-takers and downright heroic. You expect me to believe they're not real? Incidentally, how could you do that to Michael? I was dying when Julia told him Con was alive.
M.E. I am well versed in torture.
D.B. [Interrogator's eyes narrow.]
M.E. Kidding!! Don't worry. Michael will be rewarded with his own story. Writing these characters was great fun for me. That's why I'm turning their story into a series. My editor describes Operation Sheba as Alias meets 24. I hope to keep that kind of action and suspense in all my novels, while still creating characters with emotional depth and integrity.
D.B. You still deny you're a CIA operative and expect me to believe you're merely a fabulous writer?
M.E. You still claim you don't have bugs in your coffee pot?
D.B. Absolutely not! I clean it with vinegar. Fine, Misty, you can go. But I'll be watching you, and I know others will as well. Tell us where we can get Operation Sheba and what we can expect next.
M.E. Operation Sheba is currently available in ebook format from Samhain Publishing http://samhainpublishing.com/romance/operation-sheba. The print book will be released in July 2009.
In honor of Julia's heroics, I'm running a contest for readers. One lucky person will win an IPod. For details, visit my website www.readmistyevans.com.
Along with Operation Sheba, I have a paranormal comedy, Witches Anonymous, coming out in February 2009. And, no, Donnell, I'm not a witch. I just did really good research and sold my soul to a certain devil who also has cool gadgets.
D.B. I'll be the judge of that, Misty. Alias meets 24. I think we need to do a background check on your editor. That's pretty clever.
M.E. Thank you so much for having me on Five Scribes today! I know who to call for my next interrogation.