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THE DEAD KEY: A Mystery & Thriller Award Winner ~D.M. Pulley

Monday, March 30th, 2015

“ ‘The board of the bank is made up of every old money man in town.  No project gets built in Cleveland without someone from the bank being involved.  Every project that lost money had a board member of First Bank of Cleveland at the helm, but the feds can’t put a case together.  City council won’t provide corroborating witnesses.  Judges won’t grant search warrants.”  He shook his head, exasperated.” (Loc 4599 of 6682)

2014 WINNER – Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award – Grand Prize and Mystery & Thriller Fiction Winner.

The DEAD KEY was not a high-speed page-turner, rather the story built upon the measuring tape and efforts of a very young recent engineering graduate and her new job, documenting a very old bank, which had been locked and abandoned in 1978 – December 1978.  The 15 story huge building had captured the interest of some developer and they needed architectural plans for the new designs and expectations.  Iris the recent graduate of Case Western Reserve University is hired to complete the survey and get the plans processed, and then translated to the computer as fast as she is able in the summer of 1998.

I went to High School in Cleveland, moving there from a State of 3 million people to a City of 3 million people when I was 16.  I found the city grey and ugly and so dirty.  My Father was constantly explaining it was Industrial and depressed; the flowers and trees seemed to be depressed and the snow grey and dirty.  I loved sitting in on lectures at Case Western Reserve University and on Saturdays spent the day in the Hough Area working in the Homework club with new readers and later in the day with seniors that needed housekeeping or shopping completed for them.  I learned that the vegetables in the Hough area were not fresh nor- the same price as out in the suburbs. I won a Microwave oven from the Cleveland Illuminating Company with a whole package of new innovations for the kitchen after taking their class.  I gave the package to the Hough Area schools because my high school thought it was demeaning to want to know about these kinds of products.

Why does my story make any difference, because Iris, our main gal in the story is sullen, and bored and trapped in her situation and feels the same as I found people in the late 60s.  Iris is definitely depressed until she starts to use her mind and is scared by the strange things and sounds going on in that old and dark, dank, hidden bank.  Iris feels she is being followed and talked too though the duct work and as though messages are being left for her from Beatrice Baker, a very young secretary in the Audit division of the Bank.  The story begins to build on Beatrice in 1978 and Iris in 1998.  The tension builds with flies and spiders and tunnels and noises and strange and cryptic writing.  I don’t want to leave out the dirty old men and their born to wealth children, the snobbery and the power / control issues all experienced from the secretarial pool and the people working on survival mode.  Lots of womanizing and Mad mannish drinking and roughing /threatening folks who are doing the work.

Cleveland crashed because of the dirty old wealthy men in 1978

I was excited that there was a bit of discussion about Mayor Dennis Kucinich and Nixon’s laws for the white and wealthy, but very little and that made me sad.  Iris and the author keep those discussions small and focus on how they might be reflected on the building and the outcomes for the future.

As Ohio is on the royalty list for voter suppression and economic inequality – especially for women and ethnic groups there is quite an exciting opportunity for more books from this State of Being and such a depressed environment.

About the Author (from the cover)

“D.M. Pulley’s first novel, THE DEAD KEY, was inspired by her work as a structural engineer in Cleveland, Ohio.  During a survey of an abandoned building, she discovered a basement vault full of unclaimed safe-deposit boxes.  The mystery behind the vault haunted her for years, until she put down her calculator and started writing.  THE DEAD KEY as the 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Grand Prize Winner.  Pulley continues to work as a private consultant and forensic engineer, investigating building failures and designing renovations.  She lives in Northeast Ohio with her husband and two children and is currently at work on her second novel.  Visit her website at www.dmpulley.com

TLC Book Tours  sent me an un-proofed/uncorrected digital copy for review.  Digital copies are being offered for free on Amazon on the first few days of the book tour.

Related:
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The Fixer
Duke City Hit 

THE LANDGRAMM AFFAIR: A Novel of Politics, Crime, Literature and a Taste of Romance ~Wendy Marech

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

While reading THE LANDGRAMM AFFAIR, I was constantly reminded of Rupert Murdoch, the Koch Brothers and Michael Powell.  Those were all big names of wealthy folks trying to control media around the world and of course, Powell was the FCC commissioner working to deregulate the rules of the commission. All people hungry for control and power.


Landgramm is a large fictional German Corporation which is now controlled by one man, who had a huge hold on the world of Plastics.  The sole owner of the corporation could see that plastics were doomed and began seeing that the power was shifting to media and controlling information, so he began purchasing into these areas, while inflating the markets so that they could get top dollar when they sold the plastics businesses.  The primary character Mia James is an editor in a small publishing house which has just been purchased by the Landgramm Group.  Her whole world is turned around and instead of good writing and story; they are now into celebrity, tell all books, and big selling properties.

THE LANDGRAMM AFFAIR is much more interesting than living through the events of the parallel figures in this story.  Money is still the most important factor and keeping the public uninformed and out of the loop so that the most control can be achieved.  The strategies; cover ups, and the misinformation creates a very stimulating read.  The reader is constantly wondering how they might have been duped by these words and the media that they count on for understanding.   And then the murders begin!

It is very hard to tell who the good guys are and who is law enforcement and who is actually pulling the strings and making all these different facets emerge as a powerful whole?   The story would be much easier to understand if you started at the end and unraveled, instead the reader must knit it together from the casting on of the first character.  Great plot twists!

I so enjoyed Mia’s book group meetings interpreting their group reads and their quotes, discoveries, and findings added dimensions of knowledge for Mia to interpret into her new life.   Actually, there were so many characters in this book, I started to keep a note card to keep them straight and free up the minor players from the read.  Yet again, some of those bit players were very helpful to keep the story moving forward and the reader wondering.

Mia James is a quick and smart problem-solver; I think you will enjoy her character very much.

The writer kept everything moving and emotionally energy high, I liked that THE LANDGRAMM AFFAIR was about the world of publishing and media; it was a great study of all that has been happening in our rapidly changing world and a warning about the undercurrents of politics working only for the corporations.  The manipulation and the lies, of course, added a steamy quality.  The little romance made it nearly the perfect read.   What distracts you?

Chuck Loesner of Marloe Press sent me a copy of the book for review.  It was a great read – THE LANDGRAMM AFFAIR

Wendy Marech Online

“I started out in Hollywood, which is a good place to learn a thing or two about storytelling. When I realized I couldn’t live without snow, I moved back to New York, where I worked on books for HarperCollins and Penguin Press. Somewhere in there I also wrote a nationally syndicated newspaper column and a handful of freelance articles. In my free time, which is limited, I like to walk around Prospect Park and daydream.”

Related:
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The Condor Song
The Hourglass

Mail Got YOU?

Monday, October 10th, 2011
Chase Mail 1 day

Chase Mail 1 day

Mail, specifically catalogs, are not welcome in my mailbox.  Then again neither are glossy slick ads and junk mail of any kind.  I also do not want tracks and pamphlets filling up the space either.

I subscribe to a service which lets companies know that their mail is not welcome in my mail box. They do a very good job.  If I order a product from one of those services, I must remind the company not to send me ads through the mail.    I do have an email address where I love to get newsletters and catalogues from my favorite companies and not destroy trees.  I do not want trees destroyed so that I can be subjected to mail.

I would rather have clean air.

Mail that is of the personal letter kind, well I just love to get that and I do get quite a bit on my email and in my well-grounded mailbox.

I also am very careful who is on my payroll; where I spend my money.  When during the main thrust of the recent financial crisis my commercial bank was taken over by a huge bank – I withdrew my funds and found another.  The Human Rights Violations committed by the huge bank were #2 in the world.   I did not want to support them in any way.

For the last 4 years I have been getting mail, ADS, from the huge bank in massive quantities.  I have written, I have phoned, I called my mail sorters, I have protested to the Post Office and I have mailed their ads back to them.  But this huge bank does not mind spending the people’s money on ads- next to the profits they are making and the more they can disrupt and control the flow of funds the better, or so it seems.

I decided to draw attention to Chase Bank on my blog.  I am hoping a few people will move their money and not contribute to this Bank and their regime of pain.  So I started by counting the number of letters and ads I received in the Month of September 2011.   I received 42 Ads from this Bank during the month.  My interest was compounded because 2 other adults receive mail at this address and they also received 42 Ads in the month of September.  I believe that is 126 pieces of mail, printing, and postage.

The envelopes are plastic coated paper – so they are not conducive to our recycling program.  They also are made of that toxic plastic, which is also on cash register receipts and gets all over our hands and into women’s breast tissue and milk.  Pretty scary stuff right in one’s own mailbox.

Yesterday, I received 3 enveloped Ads and one 5×7 shiny envelope – all addressed to me.  This past weekend I received a 5×7 plastic coated box with a Styrofoam toxic filler, a small shiny booklet, a return envelope and a 1 page letter about their newest banking program.    They mailed me Styrofoam!!!

The letter carrier said it was a heavy day of delivery because of the boxes and nearly everyone on his route received one.

Chase ads with styrofoam

Chase ads with styrofoam

I saw the same Ad about their new program on the Daily Show and 3 news programs I visited.  They are hustling and hassling.

Since this is breast cancer awareness month – I thought I could contribute to the caution by sharing the information that much of the mail these days not only costs us trees and pollutes, but that we need to get it out of our mail system. I wanted to share that much of our mail is TOXIC and makes women and children ill.

But what does Chase Bank care?  About as much as Bank of America cares – the # 1 Human Rights Violator Bank that I am aware of.

I have gotten B. of A. off my payroll and out of my mailbox.  I am determined to get Chase Bank out of my mailbox too.
In the USA, we are allowed to bring anything we want into our homes.  And folks who send out Ads are aware of this fact.  How do you handle Toxic and Prolific mail?

Looking forward to your much appreciated comments and more suggestions for relief

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Trees Which Become Catalogues
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Move Your Money and Build Your Community