The Lizard’s Tale
by Kurt Kamm
GENRE: Mystery/Crime Thriller
Kurt Kamm has written a novel that's a literary crime novel, with a strong thread of non-fiction running through it. The Lizard's Tale is a tale of crime—with an a wide-ranging cast of characters.
When the DEA goes up against the Sinaloa Cartel, an orphan and an endangered lizard are caught in the conflict. The action moves from Guatemala to Mexico to Catalina Island off the coast of California.
Alejandro, a middle class Guatemalan, wants his share, and makes a deal with the cartel. Now he’s risking his life to deliver the goods.
El Dedo, a brilliant financier, is the Sinaloa Cartel’s banker. He worries about what to do with the billions of dollars collecting dust in his underground vault.
Ryan, a DEA Special Agent, needs to make a high profile case to get a promotion. Is the big yacht headed for California carrying a Mexican drug shipment?
Kate, a wildlife officer on Catalina Island, smells smoke. When she heads out in the middle of the night to investigate a fire, she makes an astonishing discovery.
Jorge, an orphan from the streets of Mexico, is abandoned in the United States. Will he find his way back home and track down his mother’s killer?
The General’s tank was near empty. Alejandro stopped and took down one of the red plastic gas containers. After he filled the tank, he extracted the second of the three bottles of beer from his cooler. “Bienvenido a Mexico,” he said aloud and held the bottle up in an imaginary toast. The beer was warm, but he enjoyed it anyway. He had overcome the harsh Guatemalan roads and crossed the border safely with his cargo. Now all he had to do was survive the trip through Mexico.
Ahead of him lay 2,500-kilometers on Mexico Highway 200, the main road along the Pacific Coast. The trip north would take Alejandro past Acapulco, Puerto Vallarta, and Mazatlan before reaching Culiacán. The condition of the road itself had been the challenge in Guatemala, but that was not the big risk on the journey ahead. Highway 200 was a winding, two-lane paved road. The real danger was what Alejandro might encounter. He had been warned not to travel at night. Drunk drivers, livestock, pedestrians, and unlighted farm equipment were some of the lesser hazards. The real threat, day or night however, was robbery and hijacking, and he had read several reports of travelers coming upon roadblocks set by bandits armed with machetes and machine guns, decked out in bulletproof vests draped with hand grenades. Alejandro planned to keep moving and cover about 800 kilometers. By evening, he hoped to reach Acapulco.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Malibu, California resident Kurt Kamm has written a series of firefighter mystery novels, which have won several literary awards. His newest novel, The Lizard’s Tale, provides a unique look inside the activities of the Mexican drug cartels and the men dedicated to stopping them.
Kurt has used his contact with CalFire, Los Angeles County and Ventura County Fire Departments, as well as the ATF and DEA to write fact-based (“faction”) novels. He has attended classes at El Camino Fire Academy and trained in wildland firefighting, arson investigation and hazardous materials response. He has also attended the ATF and DEA Citizen’s Academies. After graduating from the DEA Citizen’s Academy in 2014, he began work on The Lizard’s Tale.
Kurt has built an avid fan base among first responders and other readers. A graduate of Brown University and Columbia Law School, Kurt was previously a financial executive and semi-professional bicycle racer. He was also Chairman of the UCLA/Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center Foundation for several years.
Visit his author website at www.kurtkamm.com
Kurt Kamm LITERARY AWARDS
TUNNEL VISIONS (MCM Publishing 2014)
2014 USA Best Book Award -Fiction: General – Finalist
HAZARDOUS MATERIAL (MCM Publishing 2013)
Best Novel 2013 – Public Safety Writers Association
Winner of the 2012 Hackney Literary Award for best novel of the year ($5,000 PRIZE)
Reader's Favorite 2013 – Finalist – Urban Fiction
The 2012 Dana Award – Finalist
Eric Hoffer Award - Finalist (2014)
Excerpt published in Birmingham Arts Journal http://www.birminghamartsjournal.com/pdf/baj10-2.pdf
ONE FOOT IN THE BLACK (MCM Publishing 2012)
The 2012 USA Best Book Awards – Fiction: General – Finalist
The 2013 Beverly Hills Book Awards – Fiction: General – Finalist
Excerpt published in Felons, Flames and Ambulance Rides: Stories About America's Public Safety Heroes
CODE BLOOD (MCM Publishing 2011)
Writer’s Type - First Chapter Competition. January 2011- First Place
2012 International Book Awards - Fiction: Cross Genre Category – First Place
National Indie Excellence Book Awards – Faction (fiction based on fact) - Winner of the 2012 Award
The 2012 USA Best Book Awards - Fiction: Horror - Winner
LuckyCinda Publishing Contest 2013 First Place – Thriller
Reader's Favorite 2013– Finalist – Horror Fiction
Knoxville Writer’s Guild - 2011 Novella or Novel Excerpt – 2nd Place
RED FLAG WARNING Aberdeen Bay 2010
The Infinite Writer– Mystery 2010 – First Place
The Written Art Awards - Mystery/Thriller 2010 – First Place
Royal Dragonfly – Mystery Category 2011 – First Place
INTERVIEW with Kurt Kamm
What are four things you can’t live without?
In order of importance, 1) my wife, 2) my bicycles, 3) my pets, 4) popcorn.
What is your favorite television show?
There is certainly nothing on network television worth watching. I watch the Bloomberg financial programs and like many of the BBC series, including Poldark and Downton. Ray Donovan and Homeland are also favorites. Now for a confession. If I am working out in my gym and need a distraction, I turn on Game of Thrones. What a crazy show. I have no idea what the plot is, but I can watch 15 - 20 minutes of any episode from any year and be entertained. None of it makes any sense, but there is always a great sword fight, a poisoning, people speaking strange languages, or a horde of warriors riding horses. Brainless entertainment, but entertainment for sure.
If you could be any character, from any literary work, who would you choose to be? Why?
All the great literary characters suffer through pain, misery, separation, ill health, poverty, torture, or mental illness. Do I want any of that? Certainly not. I am happy with my own life. Very lucky, healthy, reasonably happy, and solvent. Why would I trade that? I could end up in an 18th Century prison.
What have you got coming soon for us to look out for?
I like to develop characters with unusual mental or physical characteristics. In Hazardous Material, I had a firefighter who had a preternatural sense of smell. Right now, I am thinking about a novel with a first-person POV about a boy with synesthesia. This is a rare and fascinating physical characteristic, which affects less than one person in 100,000. It varies with the individual, but it is a mixing of the senses. I am oversimplifying it, but this these people can hear or even taste colors, or see complex numbers. Many of the great mathematicians were synesthetes, and think of Beethoven—he was deaf but composed music because he could see it. Nabokov was a synesthete as well. Stay tuned.
What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?
When I am working on a book, I find that my writing style can be influenced and changed by whatever I am reading at the moment. As a result, I have to be very careful to read something totally unrelated. Some of my favorite authors are James Salter, F. Scott, Ian McEwan, and John Le Carre. I know that's quite a cross-section, but I like writers whose work features characters driving the plot, instead of the opposite.
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
One randomly chosen winner via rafflecopter will win a $50 Amazon/BN.com gift card.