The Lonely Mile by Allan Leverone
Join Allan Leverone , author of the thriller novel, The Lonely Mile (Stone House Ink), as he virtually tours the blogosphere September 5 – October 28 2011 on his second virtual book tour with Pump Up Your Book!
About Allan Leverone
Allan Leverone is a three-time Derringer Award finalist as well as a 2011 Pushcart Prize nominee for his short fiction. The Lonely Mile, released by StoneHouse Ink in July, is Allan’s second thriller, following Final Vector from Medallion Books in February. He has been hailed as “the successor to Michael Crichton” by bestselling author Vincent Zandri, and bestselling author Scott Nicholson calls The Lonely Mile “a taut crime drama full of twists and conspiracy.”
Learn more about Allan at his website at www.allanleverone.com.
Visit his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/allan.leverone.
About The Lonely Mile
When struggling hardware store owner Bill Ferguson stumbles upon a kidnapping in progress, he does what we all like to believe we would do – he steps in and breaks up the crime, saving a young girl from a horrific fate.
The perpetrator, a serial kidnapper/murderer known as the I-90 Killer, escapes and vows revenge, focusing his twisted obsession on Ferguson’s family. When Bill’s daughter disappears soon after, the frantic father forms an uneasy alliance with a beautiful FBI investigator leading the search for the I-90 Killer.
But there are forces at play which go much deeper than Ferguson realizes, and the danger may go far beyond one kidnapped girl. Bill Ferguson knows he must risk everything to save his child – the question is, will he be too late?
Here’s what critics are saying about The Lonely Mile!
“Allan Leverone delivers a taut crime drama full of twists and conspiracy. A serial-killer thriller with a heart.”
– Scott Nicholson, bestselling author of Liquid Fear and Disintegration
“Thriller fans will enjoy Allan Leverone’s new book, The Lonely Mile, which will carry readers along as a daughter is stolen by a vengeful serial killer and we follow her father’s determined efforts to rescue her at all costs.”
– Dave Zeltserman, author of Pariah and Blood Crimes
He was sure Martin Krall was home, since there was a car parked in front of the garage. Maybe he was right on the other side of the door, six feet away, gloating about his successful kidnapping of Carli Ferguson and how he put one over on, not just the FBI and the New York and Massachusetts State Police, but on Bill Ferguson himself.
Bill flicked the safety off the Browning and grasped the tarnished brass doorknob with his right hand. He was sweating like he had just done fifty pushups. Another crash of thunder sounded outside, and the resulting flash of brilliant lightning illuminated the garage like Fenway Park during a night game. He turned the knob, opened the door, and cautiously peered inside, then walked through the door into an empty kitchen.
Dirty dishes littered a single-basin sink as well as the kitchen table, which was located next to the garage entrance. The dingy green and white tiles of the linoleum floor were way overdue for a good mopping. But the thing that drew Bill Ferguson’s attention immediately upon entering the kitchen, as soon as he had determined no one was present and about to shoot him, was the terrifyingly large bloodstain splattered all over the floor and halfway up the wall of a hallway running adjacent to the kitchen. It looked as though someone had died a violent death here. Recently.
A surge of fear and anguish coursed through his body. A mental picture of Carli lying on the floor mortally wounded, leaking blood from a serious wound while the I-90 Killer watched in amusement, sprang unbidden into Bill’s mind. He set out to check out the rest of the house, hurrying, moving as fast as he could without alerting Krall to his presence.
The remainder of the home’s first floor was just as deserted as the kitchen, although signs of habitation were everywhere. A dirty pair of white gym socks had been tossed haphazardly onto the living room floor next to a sagging green couch in front of the television. An opened newspaper covered the messy coffee table. Dirty drinking glasses were scattered around the room, some still half-filled with liquid.
But there were no people, injured or otherwise.
Bill bolted up the stairs and quickly searched the second floor, once again finding plenty of evidence that Krall lived here, but nothing whatsoever to indicate the presence of Carli or any other kidnap victims.
Bill realized that, if she was here at all, Carli must be in the basement. He hoped the I-90 Killer hadn’t created his own private little dungeon there, like the portable one in the back of his truck, or worse. Bill raced down the carpeted stairway to the first floor and into the kitchen.
Adjacent to the entryway was a wooden door, identical to the one from the garage, located to its right as he faced it. This had to be the doorway that would lead to the basement and, hopefully, to Carli.
Bill allowed himself a pleasant, momentary vision of Krall off somewhere else, like he had thought before, at a job or shopping or even searching for another victim. In this scenario, Bill would waltz down the stairs, find his little girl safe and sound, untie her, and bring her home. He would be more than happy to let Special Agent Angela Canfield handle the job of hunting down and arresting Martin Krall.
It was a nice dream. But Bill knew it was an unrealistic one as well.
He repeated his exercise of a few minutes ago, leaning up against the door and pressing his ear against it, straining to hear voices or footsteps or any other sound that would give him some indication of whether anyone was there or not, and if they were, what they might be up to.
He could hear nothing but the relentless pounding of the wind and rain against the house and the occasional terrifying crash of thunder and lightning. Once more, he grasped a brass doorknob with a sweaty hand and eased the door open, praying to God that his luck would hold.
Bill exerted a steady upward pressure on the knob, hoping the added tension would prevent the door’s hinges from squeaking excessively and alerting Krall, if he was there, to his presence. The door slipped open, revealing a wooden stairway disappearing into the gloomy semi-darkness of the basement.
These stairs, like everything else in the home, appeared badly in need of repair. One tread, about halfway down the stairs, had come loose and been thrown haphazardly onto the riser. He’d have to be careful not to trip on that or some other loose tread on his way down.
He took one step, then two, then a third, and slowly descended into the stifling humidity of the cellar. Shadows moved below, and Bill knew he had been right. Whatever was happening in this house was happening down here.
One more step, and Bill’s eye level was finally below the first floor joists, allowing him a view of the entire basement. He stopped in his tracks, horrified. Chained to a bed, lying on a ratty, filthy mattress, was his little girl. Dried blood crusted one side of her head, running from her scalp, creating a mass of hopelessly clumped and knotted hair, down her face and onto her Avril Lavigne t-shirt. Her jeans were a filthy mess, stained with dried blood and urine. But all he cared about at this moment was that she was alive! She’s alive! Carli’s alive!
A man—undoubtedly Martin Krall, although his back was to Bill, so he could not say for certain—approached Carli from the left of the stairs. His right arm was swathed in bandages and Bill flashed on all of the blood he had seen on the kitchen floor. Was it possible Carli had inflicted that injury on Krall? His heart swelled with pride for his gutsy child.
Krall knelt next to the cot as Carli cringed back against the grungy black iron bars of the headboard. Her eyes were screwed shut and her mouth drawn down in a grimace of fear and disgust. The man fumbled with her belt buckle and unsnapped her jeans, mumbling to her in a low voice. Bill could just make the sound out over the noise of the storm, although he couldn’t tell what the man was saying.
Every fiber of his body was screaming at him, Shoot! Shoot him! Do it now before he turns and sees you! Before he does any more damage to your little girl! Bill raised the Browning Hi-Power and sighted down the barrel, then shook his head in mute frustration. Krall’s body was positioned directly in front of Carli. If he took the shot and Krall moved at the last second, or if Bill missed—his hands were shaking badly, it was a definite possibility—or if he hit Krall, but the round went through his body, it would strike Carli. There was no question about it.
Bill wanted to scream, and would have, if there was any way to do it without alerting Krall to his presence and giving up the advantage of surprise. He moved down another step and then another, somehow remembering in the tension and fear to step over the faulty stair tread. In a few seconds, he had reached the bottom of the stairway. Krall still hadn’t heard a sound.
He took two steps and reached a position immediately behind Krall as the man was unzipping his little girl’s jeans. Bill lifted his gun to blow Martin Krall to Hell and—
The Lonely Mile Book Publicity Tour Schedule
Book spotlighted at Virginia Beach Publishing Examiner
Tuesday, September 6
Guest blogging at The Book Faerie Reviews
“When I decided to follow my dream of writing—and selling—fiction, I was just (barely) smart enough to realize I was totally ignorant. I was brand-new to the writing thing and I figured, what could be so hard? You write entertaining stuff and then you sell it. Simple.”
Wednesday, September 7
Guest blogging at Literarily Speaking
“That vision, of an evil person using highway rest areas as a staging point for creating mayhem, must have been an especially unsettling one for me, because it stuck with me for the next thirty years. When I began writing seriously as I approached fifty years of age, one of the first thriller scenarios I envisioned was of a sociopathic kidnapper using highway rest areas to steal young women, and Martin Krall from THE LONELY MILE was born.”
Thursday, September 8
Book reviewed at Cafe of Dreams
“Absolutely amazing and brilliant! Those are the first words that pop into mind when describing The Lonely Mile. Allan Leverone gives readers a compelling, engrossing and impossible-to-put-down scream-ride from beginning to end.”
Friday, September 9
Guest blogging at The Book Bin
“In place of “How to get published,” a more timely question might become, “How do I know when my book is ready to be published?””
Monday, September 12
Interviewed at Blogcritics
Tuesday, September 13
Interviewed at The Writer’s Life
“On my end, in addition to undertaking a blog tour in support of my book, I’ve worked very hard at seeking out book reviews. I believe one of the best ways to get my book in front of potential readers is through reviews, and I’m confident enough in the quality of my work to believe most of the reviews will be positive. So far, that’s been the case.”
Wednesday, September 14
Book reviewed at Ashley’s Bookshelf
Thursday, September 15
Book spotlighted at The Plot
Friday, September 16
Guest blogging at The Plot
Monday, September 19
Book reviewed at WV Stitcher
Tuesday, September 20
Book reviewed at Martha’s Bookshelf
Wednesday, September 21
Book reviewed at Book Reviews by Molly
Thursday, September 22
Book reviewed at Life in Review
Friday, September 23
Interviewed at Book Marketing Buzz
Monday, September 26
Book reviewed at Book Reviews by Elizabeth White
Tuesday, September 27
Guest blogging at Jersey Girl Book Reviews
Wednesday, September 28
Book reviewed at Donna’s Blog Home
Thursday, September 29
Book reviewed at Celtic Lady’s Reviews
Friday, September 30
Chat with Allan at Pump Up Your Book Live! September Chat/Book Giveaway (link coming soon)