Happy Friday! Today we welcome Michael P. King and his noir crime thriller, The Traveling Man. With an excellent Kirkus Review, this is the first of three books in the series so far – more to read!
“Husband and wife con artists must get back on their feet after a scheme goes spectacularly wrong in this criminally good debut by King…. Surrounding them is a cast of superbly sketched characters whose competing motives constantly trip up their plans…. With a story every bit as intricate and entertaining as the personalities who fill it, King’s uncommonly solid debut is a must-read.” —Kirkus Reviews
Deception. Betrayal. Retribution. Married con artists, using the aliases Tom and Patty Brown, arrive in the small city of Seanboro masquerading as land speculators. Their plan is to sell a contaminated tract of lakefront property to a local gangster who is involved in real estate development. But as the double-crosses pile up, they find themselves pursued by an ex-partner seeking revenge and by an old enemy plotting their murder.
The Traveling Man is a noir crime thriller that will take you for a roller coaster ride. If you like fast-paced action, unexpected plot twists, and criminal intrigue, then you’ll love the first installment of Michael P. King’s Travelers series.
What’s the first story you ever wrote?
That would have been in grade school, so I don’t remember anything about it, really. The first story I had published, Marilyn, was a surreal story about a failed marriage told as a series of dreams. Very different from the crime thrillers I write now.
Which fictional character would you most like to meet and have a drink with?
Right this minute? Today? Parker from the Richard Stark novels. He is both an enigma and a classic career criminal; an anti-hero whose simple code of never cheating a partner and always getting even creates complex ripples. It would be fun to hear him talk about his exploits, if he would talk at all.
In the spirit of Halloween, what scares you?
Really scares me? Being on an icy road in bad traffic immediately behind someone who appears to be texting while driving. Are they going to kill themselves, kill me and themselves, or just kill me?
Favorite hero and villain in a book/movie?
Lots of favorites. Hamlet and his uncle/stepfather Claudius in Shakespeare’s play Hamlet Prince of Denmark are definitely two of them. Their conflict leads to surprising plot twists, complex misunderstandings between the characters, and an astounding amount of unintended carnage before the play reaches its climax. I always like to see a new version.
What do you consider the hardest part of writing?
The hardest part of being a writer is book promotion. Connecting with readers who enjoy crime thrillers is my number one priority. But I’m a writer, not a marketing guru. Using social media, learning about marketing, and creating ads to find those readers requires a lot of time and effort.
What are you working on now?
Right now I’m working on the fourth Travelers novel, The Freeport Robbery, where the theft of an art object from a freeport goes terribly wrong.
Michael P. King is the Kirkus Reviews critically acclaimed author of the Travelers noir crime thrillers, which feature a husband and wife team of con artists. The Traveling Man, The Computer Heist, and The Blackmail Photos are the first three books of the series. “Sometimes people make decisions that have unintended consequences when they’re trying to take what they think is the easy way out or a shortcut to wealth or fame. I’m fascinated by this tendency, and it’s the jumping off place for my fiction.”