A Wonderful Start To 2017

It’s been a great 2017 so far. Book sales for The 9th Hour have soared thanks to a brand new cover and a FREE BookBub promotion which found well over 100,000 new readers. I want to thank those who downloaded this book and all those who were brave enough to read it!

There are certain visceral reactions when reading crime fiction, especially those in the hardboiled family. In fact, I can truly say many crime novels leave me spooked and filled with unease. Intensity by Dean Koontz is a standout within this group and regularly springs to mind. By the middle of the book I was checking the locks and by the time I finished it I couldn’t bring myself to get out from under the covers. It simply had to be consumed in a single sitting.

It’s not surprising to find Dean Koontz regularly in the #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER list under the category of Horror and Psychological Thrillers.

61niazvuszl__sy346_Past midnight, Chyna Shepard, twenty-six, gazes out a moonlit window, unable to sleep on her first night in the Napa Valley home of her best friend’s family. Instinct proves reliable. A murderous sociopath, Edgler Foreman Vess, has entered the house, intent on killing everyone inside. A self-proclaimed “homicidal adventurer,” Vess lives only to satisfy all appetites as they arise, to immerse himself in sensation, to live without fear, remorse, or limits, to live with intensity. Chyna is trapped in his deadly orbit.

Chyna is a survivor, toughened by a lifelong struggle for safety and self-respect. Now she will be tested as never before. At first her sole aim is to get out alive—until, by chance, she learns the identity of Vess’s next intended victim, a faraway innocent only she can save. Driven by a newly discovered thirst for meaning beyond mere self-preservation, Chyna musters every inner resource she has to save an endangered girl . . . as moment by moment, the terrifying threat of Edgler Foreman Vess intensifies.

Even though this book was published in 2007 by Random House it has never lost pace and mirrors Stephen King’s books to a remarkable degree. What makes Dean Koontz the author of ‘uncommonly sleek work’ (Publishers Weekly) is allowing his stories to race fast enough to give his readers whiplash. There is high tension and compelling and spirited characters to feed on. It’s a rush!

Although I can never hope to write like Mr. Koontz, I can certainly work hard to research the craft of crime writing by attending workshops, conferences, and joining a group of like-minded souls who just want to entertain their readers.

The research for The 9th Hour was inspired by a violent case involving a fugitive who exploited young female victims by impersonating an authority figure. He decapitated at least 8 women keeping the severed heads as mementos. This man, whose name has been changed for this book and whose MO was based on folklore, suffered from antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) a condition which describes many serial killers. No matter how horrific the crime, we must never forget the victims.

The second and the third books in the Detective Temeke series have been doing extremely well garnering good reviews and positive comments. Needless to say,  I’m floored!

Here are a few of the most recent reviews for The 9th Hour.


The surprise was near the end, I usually can pick the murderer but this time it took quite a while. A lot of thought in this book. Pat, January 15, 2017.

5-starsI enjoyed reading this book, it kept me continuing wanting to know what was happening. I will read more books about Detective Temeke, he fascinates me. Diane Boudreau, January 15, 2017

5-starsA very good read. Excellent characters. Will definitely read the next in the series. Can’t wait to see what else the author has available. John, January 16, 2017

Caution to readers: Since The 9th Hour is hardboiled Crime Mystery the rating would naturally be an ‘R’ due to the level of violence and the depraved nature of the killer.  Please be sure to check the genre & categories of all books on Amazon, the 15% look-inside-feature – usually the first four chapters which sets the voice and mood – and the blurb. This will help readers make the right choice when purchasing a book.

Remember, a good book is best read with a great cup of coffee!


Thank you for buying my books!

Claire M.T. Stibbe

AMAZON: Worldwide

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Letters from Elsewhere: Marc

A great post from Miriam Drori’s blog introducing author Catriona King’s main character, Marc Craig.

An' de walls came tumblin' down

Letters from Elsewhere

I’m delighted to be joined today by Maximus Decimus Meridius, a.k.a. Marc, the lead character in Catriona King’s Craig Crime Series. He’s here to tell you who he is and what he does.


My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions…and if you’ve ever watched the movie Gladiator then you’ll know the rest. That’s not really my name, obviously; it’s Marc Craig. But I am Roman, on my mother’s side, and we are both fighting a war, in my case a war against crime.

The other half of my blood is Irish, from the north, but borders are irrelevant to me when I’m hunting for a murderer, and the only blood I’m interested in is the blood left at a crime scene, and the details of its DNA.

I’m a murder detective, a Superintendent now, a promotion I only accepted because…

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What a Journey

What a journey this has been! I started research almost two years ago for a new contemporary crime series set in New Mexico, finished the first draft of The 9th Hour last spring, had a fabulous handful of authors who carefully proofread and edited it, and the book is now available online at all major bookstores (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes etc).

the-9th-hourThe 9th Hour and Night Eyes will also be available from next week in the local Albuquerque Barnes & Noble Bookstore, 3701-A Ellison Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87114 – Phone (505) 792-4234. You will find paperbacks under the Local Author Section.

The 9th Hour is occasionally discounted online for a short time only (eBook 99c and $13 for a paperback). So keep your eyes peeled for special prices. Feel free to sign up here for my occasional newsletter for first hand news and updates.

We also had a very successful Goodreads Giveaway this month. Thank you to all those who entered. Out of over 1,000 entrants, three winners received a personally signed first edition paperback.

A Gift for the Launch of Night Eyes

As a thank you for all your help with the launch of Night Eyes, I have just finished signing bookmarks and three paperbacks of the second in the Detective Temeke Series published in March 2016. For those who would like to enter to receive a copy, feel free to sign up for our occasional newsletter. CLICK HERE. The winners will be picked at random and notified by email.

nighteyesingramSigned Books

I’ve had several requests for signed books. For those of you who purchased a book online or at any local bookstore, I will be sending out invitations for my next book signing/bookseller’s event and I will be happy to sign it for you there. The best way to keep updated with author events is to visit the following websites:


Blog Twitter

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Don’t have your copy yet? CLICK HERE to start reading now!

Book Updates

67,000 words into the third book in the series. Still throwing around titles but we think we’ve settled on Past Rites.  Just turning the corner and sliding slowly on the downward slope. Tying up the plot and closing arguments before the finale. Still a little behind schedule since the passing of my wonderful Mum last weekend. I am so grateful for the safe and loving home she gave us, and a father who gave me his love of language and books.

Reviews (Please!)

After you read The 9th Hour, Night Eyes and Past Rites (coming soon!) please take a moment to post your honest review on Amazon and Goodreads. One or two sentences would be wonderful and a star rating. Your review is a great gift and means so much. Thank you for coming on this newest adventure with me.

These stories are for you.

Claire Stibbe

Review Puppy

Do I Know What I’m Doing?

News from Author, Jane Bwye. A sequel to Breath of Africa is in the making. GRASS SHOOTS is being finalized and submitted to publishers very soon. We are all excited over here in New Mexico to see this new book. Congratulations, Jane! High Fives in abundance!

Jane Bwye

Ol Donyo L'Engai 1966

The sequel is finished. A burden has lifted from my shoulders. Only some editing remains after feedback from friendly readers, and then I can submit GRASS SHOOTS to my publishers.

I am tired. I don’t want to write another novel – for a long time, anyway.

Why don’t I just sit back and relax?

I did – for a week or so.

But nearly two years ago I embarked on a public speaking course with Toastmasters International, because I had started giving talks related to my writings, and I wanted to learn how to do it properly. By the time I’d completed the first hurdle I had a varied selection of entertaining and inspiring talks under my belt, and was ready for more. But I also needed a break from the Club.

So I start thinking forwards. Clubs and Societies are always looking for speakers, I’m told. But I’ve…

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Keep Calm & Write A Book


Writers see the world differently. Every voice we hear, every face we see, every hand we touch could become story fabric. – Buffy Andrews

Ever wondered what makes authors so unique? I have.   

If you know an author, you probably know they see the world through a different lens. Authors have stamina and an ability to adapt to several habitats. They tend to be introverts and at times, socially inept. Their brains tend to fire on several cylinders simultaneously, working on two projects at once, or at the very least, writing two books in tandem. They have markings which help them blend into any given environment and can follow someone without being arrested for stalking. Here’s a brief outline of what makes them so special.

Authors are closely related to psychologists. They study human behavior, dissect mental processes and select reactions to suit any given scenario. They are storytellers who can spin a yarn without drawing breath. Worldwide, there are many subspecies that have flooded the market, causing the most skilled of authors to become endangered. But there are several things that separate excellent authors from their subspecies.



  1. Study: Authors don’t simply watch people. They study them. This is an art form that requires sitting in public places for several hours, observing a target and tuning into his/her conversation. In extreme cases, an author might appear as a disinterested third party with the ultimate aim of picking up dialogue with or without the use of a tape recorder.
  2. Strengths: Authors narrow down behavior patterns and tap into moods. It’s an ability to see and connect the dots, an ability to get into someone else’s head, an ability to fine tune a profile to suit a certain character.
  3. Emotion. Authors empathize, fantasize and scrutinize in a world where most people stagger through each day in a blank haze. They are intuitive, able to soar to euphoric heights one minute and plunge into despair the next. All for the purpose of making their characters convincing.
  4. The Thrill of the Quill. Authors love to take chances and start new projects. It’s the rush of the challenge because their imagination is fueled by raw curiosity. Given the right environment ― a study sealed off from the rest of the house, a coffee shop, a restaurant, a library ― they will excel.
  5. Determination: Authors will edit their work until it’s perfect. They will design, format and learn new tricks without tiring. They will continue writing until they croak. There is no ‘off’ switch for an author. They never shut down.

If any of the above applies, then there’s definitely a story in you. So keep calm and write a book.

All Books

For any of the above books, please find the author links below:

Claire Stibbe

Jean Gill

B.A. Morton

Karen Charlton

Elizabeth Horton-Newton