What do you do when a minor character is so much fun you can’t let her go? You plot a novel just for her. That story became The Arranger, a futuristic thriller involving two wildly different concepts: a software technician who devolves into a killer and a national endurance competition called the Gauntlet. This unusual story developed from several ideas that came together for me: a character I couldn’t get out of my mind, a vivid opening scene I had to use, and a growing concern about the effect of long-term unemployment on our country.

The ArrangerThe protagonist is Lara Evans, one of the taskforce investigators from my Detective Jackson series. In the fifth book, Dying for Justice, Evans had a major role, and I had such a good time developing her character and writing from her perspective that I knew she needed her own novel. After five Jackson titles, I was ready to take a break and stretch my creative side.

Here’s the short blurb. In 2023, ex-detective Lara Evans just wants to win the Gauntlet, a national endurance competition, but a mysterious assailant wants her dead. Can she stop the killer and survive long enough to claim the victory? Click the cover image for more detail.

The e-book is only $2.99 at Amazon and B&N. Congratulations to Shirley Nienkark, who won a print copy!

Readers: Are you willing to follow a character (or author) into a different genre?
Writers: Have you tried taking a character into a different genre or time period?


  1. Neener neener! I got to read this one already. You won’t regret buying it. Just far enough in the future you can read the tea leaves. Gotta go get my review written so it’ll be ready to post with 5 stars.

    Marva Dasef
    Author of “Missing, Assumed Dead” from MuseItUp Publishing
    plus a bunch of other stuff

  2. What fun it is when secondary characters demand their hour in the sun.
    That can be fun to write and to read.

  3. I can’t wait to get my hands on this one! I read the excerpt you had out and even though it wasn’t a book I’d pick up, sounded good! And, since everything you have written has been great so far! Can’t wait! Thanks! and, keep on writing!

  4. I would probably follow a character I love almost anywhere.

    boots9k at wowway dot com

  5. I read the first In Death book. I took it on a trip, figuring I’d leave it in the seat pocked of the plane. Not only did I bring it home with me, I hit the bookstore (pre-ebook days) and bought the next 14 in the series, which was all there were at that time. Characters, characters, characters.

    And yes, I’ve written follow up books because I couldn’t leave the characters behind.

    I’ve got this one on my NOOK and am looking forward to diving in.

    Terry’s Place
    Romance with a Twist–of Mystery

  6. The book sounds great, LJ, and one I’d love to read. I look forward to featuring you next week at Mysterious Writers.

  7. Absolutely is the answer. If I love an author’s work, I definitely would follow them.

    Can’t wait to read this one!

    emilyking630 at yahoo dot com

  8. Hey, LJ, looks great, and I love a free book as much as the next person! LOL So here I am, fingers crossed, hoping to win.
    Very best,
    Donna Carrick

  9. I really like Lara Evans and this book sounds fantastic. 5 stars, at the very least

  10. Still in the same genre, still following my main character…

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