Friday, September 13, 2013

THE LINEN GOD - James O'Shea - One Free Book

Another author new to my blog. Welcome, James. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.
I try not to, but it’s difficult when the characters are male as I tend to seep into them. It’s much easier to see myself in the manuscript during edits than it is when I’m writing, and I usually just leave it in.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?
I’ve never much cared for the beaten path, but I’d say retiring from a successful career in hi-tech to get into creative writing might top it all.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?
When I first stuck my toe in the water several years ago, my wife was very encouraging. She loved what I wrote and is the main reason why I stuck with it. But it wasn’t until and agent and then a publisher thought my writing was worth investing in that I started to think I might a writer. When I saw my first book in print and read all the glowing reviews of my work, I finally started to believe it.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
I’ve always been interested in the religion/science dynamic, so writers like Dan Brown and Michael Crichton intrigue me. But, bottom line, I enjoy any writer that makes it difficult to put a book down and go to bed at night. The aim with my books is to be that writer.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?
I find my faith and prayer life keeps me grounded and helps me establish healthy priorities and boundaries. It’s too easy to get caught up in activities that seem important today, but are meaningless tomorrow. Staying focused and finding quality time for God is the key. Having a supportive spouse is a close second.

How do you choose your characters’ names?
Occasionally the character name needs to fit a certain profile or clue, but usually I tend to use friends and family names at random.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
Raising two amazing children, then meeting my soul mate after 18 years of being a divorced dad would have to top my list. Now I’m able to help raise a third child who seems on the same track so far, but he has some tough acts to follow!  J

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?
Probably a dog because I’m loyal, playful, and always tend to run out to the end of my leash.

What is your favorite food?

What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
From a writing standpoint, I had a tendency to spend too much time describing people, places, things, emotions, etc. My publisher’s editor helped me minimize this, which improved pace and allowed the reader to use their own imagination to fill in the blanks. It turned out to be a real win/win and the story flowed better.

Tell us about the featured book.
The Linen God is a thriller based on the legendary Shroud of Turin, alleged to be the burial cloth that wrapped Christ’s body after His death. Despite 150,000 hours of scientific study, the source of the image is still a mystery. Following is the back cover of the book:

The Shroud of Turin is the most studied and controversial religious relic in human history. The ancient linen cloth bears the image of a man, alleged to be that of Jesus of Nazareth. What if it were real? What if it contained a secret powerful enough to alter the course of human history? And what if it fell into the wrong hands?

Manny Lusum is convinced the Shroud is the genuine article and obsessed with proving it scientifically. Grace Barden is not only Manny's best friend, but she's also secretly in love with the physics student and soon-to-be Catholic priest.

Across the globe, three grisly murders and the theft of a secret manuscript thrust Grace and Manny into a generations-old conspiracy of biblical proportions. From New York to Rome to the inner sanctum of the Vatican, they struggle to untangle a bizarre mystery surrounding the controversial artifact. In a dramatic confrontation between faith and the ultimate evil on the world stage, Grace and Manny are pushed to the edge of an abyss, balanced on the brink between heaven and hell.

Please give us the first page of the book.
The gaping wound in her side made every movement, every breath, more painful than the last. Crimson stained her bare feet, and the remnants of her screams echoed, but no lights beckoned from the shuttered buildings she passed. Not a single soul responded to her pleas for help. Rain beat a tattoo on rooftops and into puddles, drowning out all other sounds, so that only she and the feral-scented pursuer seemed to exist this night. Someplace behind her, his heavy boots slapped the cobblestones.

From a dark street, she slipped into an even darker alleyway and behind trash bins. The rain intensified, pounding the metal cans and pouring from the downspout by her feet. A red neon sign overhead made the discharge look like a river of blood.

She crouched down, wiped her face with her sleeve, and tried to still a shiver, but it wasn’t the bitter night that iced her bones. It was as if the cold were a living thing, seeping in through her thick, black tunic.

“The Lord is my rock and salvation,” she whispered, her shallow breaths hanging in the rancid air. “In whom should I fear?”

Her whole body jerked at the sound of clinking glass and slurred voices rising above the rain’s steady drum. The silhouette of two young men swayed down the alleyway, no more than fifty meters away. Hoping to get their attention and beg for help, she slid out from behind the metal bins, stopped by something both sinister and familiar that passed through the darkness between them.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
The Amazon link for “The Linen God” has sample chapters and many reviews:
And/or you can “Like” my Facebook page at:

Thank you, James, for sharing this new book with us.

Readers, leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Google +, Feedblitz, Facebook, Linkedin, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.



Melanie Backus said...

Thank you for a very interesting interview with James O'Shea. The Linen God has sure peaked my curiosity--a most fascinating subject. I would love to be a winner with this one. Thank you!

Melanie Backus, TX

Britney Adams said...

Always a pleasure to meet new authors! Thank you for the introduction to James O'Shea!

Britney Adams, TX

Mary Preston said...

A very dramatic first page. THE LINEN GOD does sound very interesting.

Mary P


Katie said...

Sounds great! Please enter me. I'm from NC.

Katie G.

Sharon Richmond Bryant said...

Enter me!!
Sharon Richmond Bryant

Unknown said...

James, your books sounds very different, but ver interesting!
Tonja (VA)

Shopgirl said...

This sounds so suspenseful! I'm in MN.

bonton said...

Hi, James!

Interesting interview!

Have always been interested in the Shroud of Turin - would love to read this book. Thanks for the chance to win a copy!


bonton said...

Forgot to leave my address:



Kristie said...

This book sounds AWESOME!!!! It reminds me of the "Da Vinci Code" by Dan Brown but WAY BETTER because it has religion thrown in. My husband would also be interested in this one too. As a librarian it's great to get to know new authors. Kristie from Ohio. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

Jean said...

Sounds like a super read! Thanks for the opportunity.

Jean K
West Palm Beach, FL