Hello and welcome to my blog for another round of Meet the Characters! Today I am featuring a guest blogger who has graciously agreed to let me do a character interview, which is my favorite kind of interview. Join me in welcoming author, Vanessa Kier, and her characters from War: Disruption. It’s a fantastic romantic thriller with wonderful characters so without further ado here is the interview with Max, Emily and Kristoff.
What are your favorite scenes in your book: the action, the dialog or the romance?
MAX LANSING: (Scowls) The romance. Because as much as I like action scenes, I wasn’t at peak fitness and—
KRISTOFF WREN: (Butts in) What my best friend means is that he was tortured and almost died.
MAX: Who asked you here? Get lost. It all worked out, didn’t it?
KRIS: If you hadn’t been determined to play Lone Ranger then you would have had backup and—
MAX: Oh, stuff it, already. I freaking apologized. And I was trying to keep you and the others safe.
KRIS: Blah, blah, blah. Heard this all before. Not—
EMILY IWASAKI: Boys! Can you please let it go already? Kris, Max is sorry he cut you and the rest of the team out of his life. Max, Kris is your best friend. He loves you like a brother—
WIL LANSING: Who Max also shut out of his life, by the way.
MAX: What the—?! Was everyone in the damn book invited to this interview?
KRIS: Nah. We pretty much just decided to crash it.
WIL: To make certain you didn’t gloss over the important parts.
KRIS: What he said. Rene was going to come, but he had to rush off to treat a patient.
KRIS: C’mon, admit it. You know you missed being part of the team.
MAX: (Grumbles) Maybe. (Puts his hand over his mouth to hide his reluctant smile.) Next question!
What do you do for a living?
EMILY: I was a principal ballet dancer. Now… Well, we’re still working through the details.
MAX: I’m a—
WIL and KRIS speak in unison: Rogue black-ops agent!
MAX: (Scowls at them.) Not any more. But if the two of you don’t lay off me, then I’ve got no problem going back out on my own.
KRIS: Max, what happened to your sense of humor?
WIL: (Mutters.) Max always takes things too seriously.
MAX: Ha! Neither of you workaholics should talk. I bet—
EMILY: (Lets out a shrill whistle) Wil. Kris. Time for you to say good-bye. Max needs to finish this interview. Alone.
KRIS: Aw, Emily. You’re no fun.
EMILY: Kristoff, behave!
KRIS: (Laughing) All right. Message received. Over and out.
WIL: Later, bro.
EMILY: Sorry folks. Max, carry on.
MAX: Ah. Next question?
What word makes you the happiest?
MAX: (Curses.) What kind of question is that?
EMILY: Max, we’re trying to show people more about you. Just answer the question, please.
MAX: (Thinks a moment) Emily.
MAX: The word that makes me happiest is Emily. Now you answer.
EMILY: (Blushes. Then leans in and whispers in Max’s ear.)
MAX: (Clears his throat.) Is this interview over yet?
EMILY: Not quite. There’s one more question.
What’s your favorite animal?
MAX: You’ve got to be kidding me.
MAX: (Huffs out a breath.) Fine. Whatever. Elephant.
EMILY: Really? Why?
MAX: (Stares at her in exasperation.) No. Of course not really. I just said the first thing that came into my head because… (He finishes the rest of the sentence for Emily’s ears only.)
EMILY: Oh! (Ducks her head.) Okay, folks. Interview’s over.
He’s been trained for war. No one prepared him for love.
Black ops agent Max Lansing believes a powerful official within the United States military is protecting international arms dealer Heinrich Dietrich. Determined to make Dietrich pay for the attack that injured his younger brother, Max vows to hunt Dietrich down, even if it means going rogue.
Adrift after an attack destroyed her career and her self-confidence, former principal ballerina Emily Iwasaki has come to West Africa as part of a dance tour to raise money for war orphans. The tour is her best chance at regaining a sense of purpose.
With only twelve days to stop Dietrich from recovering a missing weapon of mass destruction and selling it to a vicious group of West African rebels, Max doesn’t have time to play babysitter. Yet when rebels attack Emily’s tour group, he steps in and saves her. As the days tick down to the arms deal, and all of Max’s attempts to get Emily to safety fail, they end up racing through the jungle steps ahead of the rebels.
Keeping Emily safe messes with Max’s timeline…and his revenge. But when it comes down to saving the day or saving his girl, there’s really only one choice.
The first book in the new action-packed romantic thriller series WAR
Peering beneath his blindfold, Max Lansing saw Ansgar Ziegler’s hand moving toward him holding a long, thin needle. Max braced himself against the wooden chair and tried once again to break his rawhide bonds. But he was trussed too tightly.
Sweat trickled down his spine as the needle touched the skin at the base of his neck. Max clenched his teeth and vowed not to scream this time, no matter how much pain the acupuncture needle inflicted as it triggered his nerves. He—
The door slammed open. Ziegler dropped his hand and spun toward the sound.
“Herr Ziegler, the scout reports that the boss’s helicopter is fast approaching,” one of the guards said in African accented English.
Ziegler cursed in German. “Rest up, Max,” he muttered. “We shall finish this later.”
“Can’t…wait,” Max said.
“Remove him,” Ziegler ordered as he braced his case of needles with his deformed, scarred left hand and zipped it closed with his undamaged right hand.
Max felt a spurt of satisfaction knowing Ziegler had received those burns in a fight against him and his team. Of course, if Ziegler hadn’t been injured, he wouldn’t be torturing Max out of revenge. Instead, Max would have been turned over to Ziegler’s boss, Dietrich, who had his own axe to grind with Max.
One of the guards untied Max from the chair, then two sets of hands captured his arms and dragged him into the hallway. A moment later they threw him into the tiny room that served as his cell. Pain rocketed through him as he hit the packed dirt floor and he almost blacked out. In addition to using needles, Ziegler had viciously kicked Max’s torso and legs with the steel-reinforced toes on his loafers, damaging one of Max’s ribs and leaving his whole body aching.
By the time Max’s senses stopped swimming, the guards had tied his feet to a stake in the ground and left.
Max spat a hunk of his long blond hair out of his mouth and took a shallow breath, trying not to jar his ribs. Then he waited for the sound of footsteps in the hallway to disappear. This was the first moment in two…three… Hell, he’d lost track. The first time since he’d been captured that he didn’t feel groggy from drugs.
He had to escape. Now.
He rubbed his cheek on the small piece of wood sticking up out of the dirt floor until his blindfold slid down his face. Not that he could see much more without the filthy rag covering his eyes. A trickle of light slipped through a crack up by the ceiling to reveal a room approximately six feet by six feet. The walls were standard for this part of West Africa, plastered concrete with a corrugated metal roof.
The most important detail? He was alone.
He exhaled in relief.
His hands were bound behind him, but not staked. He raised them to his waist and fumbled with his belt until he was able to slip the buckle around to the back. Then he pressed the mechanism to release the spring-activated knife. Sloppy of Ziegler’s men not to do a thorough body search. Just because Max had quit Unit 3 and gone off on his own didn’t mean that he hadn’t brought some of the team’s toys with him to Africa.
The blade sprung free. He rubbed his bindings across the blade’s edge, keeping an ear out for approaching footsteps.
But all he heard was the approach of a helicopter.
Good. It would keep Ziegler and company distracted.
Buy the Book:
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Vanessa Kier spends way too much time thinking up ways she can torture her characters. A worst-case scenario thinker, she’s been creating stories in her head since childhood. Now she’s found her niche in writing romantic thrillers that combine intense emotion with action-packed plots. The author of six books in The Surgical Strike Unit series about a privately run special operations group, she has set her new series WAR in West Africa, where she lived for a time.
When she’s not writing, listening to music, or playing puzzle games on her mobile device, Vanessa writes the occasional Tech Talk column for her local RWA chapter’s newsletter and takes long hikes in the nearby hills.
Connect with Vanessa:
Newsletter signup (receive exclusive content): http://eepurl.com/ssAbv
Thank you for joining us today! I hope you enjoyed this round of Meet the Characters and will join us again next week!