Val Penny is an American author living in SW Scotland. She has two adult daughters of whom she is justly proud and lives with her husband and two cats. She has a Law degree from Edinburgh University and her MSc from Napier University. She has had many jobs including hairdresser, waitress, lawyer, banker, azalea farmer and lecturer. However she has not yet achieved either of her childhood dreams of being a ballerina or owning a candy store. Until those dreams come true, she has turned her hand to writing poetry, short stories and novels. Her crime novels, ‘Hunter’s Chase’ Hunter’s Revenge and Hunter’s Force are set in Edinburgh, Scotland, published by Crooked Cat Books. The fourth book in the series, Hunter’s Blood, follows shortly.
Hunter by name – Hunter by nature:
Can DI Hunter Wilson keep Edinburgh safe when he is the hunted?
DI Hunter Wilson is woken in the early hours of the morning by a call from his son, Cameron. Who has murdered the young student who shares Cameron’s flat? Why would anybody want to kill a young woman recently arrived in the city?
Now that the united police force, Police Scotland exists, Hunter must call in the new Major Incident Team (MIT) to lead the investigation. Hunter’s ability to investigate anything further is put in severe doubt when someone from his past decides to take revenge on him. He goes missing and his team have no idea where to look for him. Who would want to stop Hunter in his tracks?
Hunter’s team must work closely with MIT, with or without him, to solve the murder in this taught crime thriller.
Except from Hunters Force
Hunter was still hurting in the back of the car. His breath was gone. He tried to stay calm because he remembered that, if he didn’t struggle with it, his breath would come back. Still, he felt as if somebody was holding his head under water.
“Hunter?” John’s voice came from the front of the car.
Hunter could not reply. He had no breath, and Squires kicked him again, this time hard in the side of the head. He rolled onto his back and saw stars. His chest started hitching and his breaths finally started coming in small grateful sips. Squires kicked his head again. Hunter felt blackness seep into the edges of his vision. His eyes rolled back. His stomach clenched and he thought that he might be sick. Hunter was so confused that he actually thought the missing carpet was a good thing. The metal floor would be easier to clean if he vomited.
“How do you like my brand of punishment?” John asked. “I had to leave the force because of you, and you’re lost to the force because of me. Neat, isn’t it?”
Scuttling to the far side of the car, Hunter said, “John, this is madness! We can sort this out and nobody needs to know, I swear!”
Hunter pressed his back against the car wall. The bar with the handcuff was above his left shoulder. Squires kept staring at him. Hunter didn’t move. He was trying to buy time. Catch his breath. Think straight. His head was still sore, making everything hazy, but he found the pain was an efficient way to bring clarity back to his life: the present.
He pulled his knees to his chest. Squires never stopped looking at him. Hunter felt something small and jagged against his foot. Bare feet can be useful. He thought it was probably a shard of glass or a rough pebble, but with mounting dread he saw it was neither. It was a tooth.
His breath caught in his throat. He glanced over at Squires, who continued to stare at him. Then Hunter watched as Squires opened the box he had seen in the corner of the car. Hunter felt sick again when he realised the contents were old rusty tools. He saw a set of pliers, a hacksaw, a hammer, and then he stopped looking. He didn’t like to think about how the tooth came out or who it had belonged to.
“Are we having fun yet, Hunter?” John asked.
“We need to talk this through, John,” Hunter said. “This is crazy.”
“That is a very disappointing attitude,” John said, shaking his head.
Hunter watched Squires. The huge man remained impassive, waiting for his instructions. But now the box was open his attention was distracted from Hunter to the tools.
“Squires, cuff him now. He is getting on my nerves,” John commanded.
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