The China Dogs
by Sam Master
Publish Date: August 19, 2014
Publisher: Witness Impulse an imprint of HarperCollins
~ Synopsis ~
Man’s best friend is about to become America’s worst enemy…
When a sudden rash of deadly canine attacks hits the greater Miami area, Lieutenant “Ghost” Walton, Special Ops, takes little notice. Blame it on the heat, a rare disease, or the fact that people just don’t know how to take care of their pets.
But when the body count rises, and the perimeter of blood and carnage spreads wider and wider, into the farthest reaches of Miami-Dade county, Ghost has no choice but to pay attention. Doggedly, he tries to uncover the link between these lethal incidents, but he doesn’t count on falling for a sassy out-of-towner with a dark past, nor does he expect to stumble onto a plot that threatens national security.
Where to Purchase
Gobi Desert, Northeastern China
The silver buses drive across the land of endless sand. Onboard are prisoners from China’s notorious Death Row. Rapists, serial murderers, and child abusers.
Twenty men about to be given an extraordinary chance to live.
To wipe the slate clean.
The long vehicles that carry them are equipped with lethal electrocution equipment, state-of-the-art technology designed to deliver on-the-spot executions. The inmates can choose to stay on board and be quickly put to death; their organs harvested there and then and sold to those needing donations.
Or—when the doors swing open—they can run for their lives. Run into one of the largest deserts in the world and take their chances with what lies out there.
Air brakes hiss, sand sprays, and the five buses come to a syn- chronized stop in the blistering heat.
Three army copters hover in the sweltering air. Military bosses watch like circling vultures.
On cue, automated locks clunk and the big doors of the ve- hicles slide open.
Clouds of hot sand rise as the bare feet of desperate men jump and run from the vehicles.
No one remains.
Six miles away—six miles north, south, east, and west—the doors of four armored personnel carriers also open .
General Fu Zhang peers down like God. Watches life and death play out. People reduced to black dots, scattered like dung beetles. He can’t help but think it would be better for the men if they’d stayed on the buses.
Their deaths would be less painful.
The leader of China’s armed forces follows each and every fa- tality on his video monitor.
Nonchalantly, he waves a hand to the pilot to return to base.
He is pleased.
Seldom has he seen such efficient slaughter. Such economic carnage.
Project Nian is nearing completion.
Just for the Thrill of It
I was in New York on business when my agent called me and told me that I had my first publishing deal. I didn’t let out the childish shriek of joy that was inside me, nor did I give in to the urge to do a lengthy knee-slide on the nearest strip of grass and shout “Yes! Yes! Yes!’
I just stayed calm.
I asked all the grown up questions about royalties, advances, foreign options etc. and said a big thanks to him for landing the deal and most of all for believing in me.
The truth was, I didn’t give a damn about the financials.
Like many people, I just ached to write a book that was deemed good enough to be published. And I couldn’t believe that such an immense honour was really going to be afforded to me.
I was going to be a writer. An author. And be well paid for it.
My book had just been sold in England, Italy and Germany and the advances were racing toward half-a-million pounds.
Seven more novels followed, with varying degrees of success. Some bombing and some selling in more than forty countries.
But here’s the rub.
The ones I tried hardest on – the ones I really poured my heart and soul into – they didn’t make as much money as the ones that were done quickly and left me feeling least satisfied.
And somewhere down the lines (those hundreds of thousands of lines) I lost the plot for a while. I got so hung up on sales, reviews, marketing and revenue that I completely forgot the feelings of exhilaration that came with the first book.
First off, there’s a joy to writing. It is thrilling, cathartic, creative, rewarding and fulfilling in ways that non-writers don’t understand (much in the way non-runners don’t equate with the buzz that comes from pounding out a quick mile or skin-stripping, bone-bashing marathon).
Secondly, it makes me a better person. It makes me more observant, more sensitive, more understanding. It fuels my creativity and keeps my imagination sharp and agile.
Finally, it’s what I am. It’s me as a full-blown sunflower the size of a dinner plate.
Occasionally, I have to remind myself of all the above and it’s something I’m also keen to share with people who are about to write their first book. Don’t think of the deals, the possible money, the reviews or the possible fame. They don’t matter. Do it for yourself. When you run your first marathon, you don’t think you’re about to clock up the fastest twenty-six miles ever run, you just want to finish. You want to say, ‘Damn, I did that. All the way!’ It doesn’t matter in what style you did it, how flash or raggedy some people you looked. You did it.
So go write. Write for you. For the sheer fun of it. For how good it will make you feel. And if people love your story then congratulations – and if they hate it, then it’s their loss. You did something they’ll never do, you completed your own writing marathon and in that makes you a lifetime winner.
About the Author
SAM MASTERS is a pseudonym for an author who has written seven books, including a bestseller that has sold in more than 30 countries. This is his first novel for Witness.
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