Thursday, 10 October 2013

The Themes of The Manhattan Puzzle


I'm delighted to present a guest post about author Laurence O'Bryan, who writes modern day mystery-thrillers with a twist or three. First there was The Istanbul Puzzle, which necessitated six visits to Istanbul for research (now that's commitment!). Then came The Jerusalem Puzzle, which continued the story and features the same characters. And now, there's the third book in the series, The Manhattan Puzzle, which launches October 10, 2013.


Interesting facts about Laurence in his own words (with additional comments from me in italics).

I was first published by a school newspaper when I was ten. (Start young if you can.)
The Istanbul Puzzle was shortlisted for the Irish Crime Novel of the Year Award 2012. (Get your work out there.)
My roots go back to a small estate deep in the Mountains of Mourne, near the Silent Valley, in County Down, Northern Ireland. (Recognise your own history and heritage.)
I went to school in Dublin, drank way too much, studied English and history, then business, then IT at Oxford University. While a student, I worked as a kitchen porter in a club near the Bank of England. (Live a full life and incorporate it into your writing along the way.)
I have also published a guide to social media called, Social Media is Dynamite. (Diversify!)

Laurence's top tip for writers

"Don't expect easy success, it's an illusion, and don't expect to find a short cut, there's only the long way, but do expect to become a writer through the torment and toil that will make you one."

The Themes of The Manhattan Puzzle
By Laurence O’Bryan

What has been hidden in Manhattan by the most powerful people on earth?
What would you do to a Manhattan banker who treated ordinary people like slaves?
What magic is buried under Manhattan that allows it to rise again from anything the world throws at it?
The BXH Bank Building NYC
BXH Bank building, Manhattan, vehicle entrance visible under the arch.
Image © LP O’Bryan

These are the themes of The Manhattan Puzzle. The story sees Sean and Isabel (my characters from The Istanbul Puzzle and The Jerusalem Puzzle) reunited in Manhattan at the headquarters of one of the world’s largest banks, BXH. There’s been some grisly murders, and now the plot takes a new twist. The contents of the book they found in Istanbul are revealed.
My personal journey with this story grew out of my disgust at the financial crisis that has brought many so low. I am interested in the myths and the beliefs of those who value money above everything.
But The Manhattan Puzzle is about other things too. For instance, what would you do if your partner didn’t come home one night? And what would you think if the police turned up at your door the next day looking for him?
Relationships are under stress everywhere, because of the demands placed on us by our jobs, but few of us will face what Isabel has to face when Sean goes missing. 
There is violence from the start in The Manhattan Puzzle too, but the opening has a woman inflicting it on a man. I am tired of reading about men inflicting sexual violence on women. I think it’s time for the handcuffs to swop wrists. And they certainly do in The Manhattan Puzzle. You can download the first chapter here as a pdf.  
But don’t get me wrong. I love Manhattan. It’s a city in a snow globe of dollar bills. So look in your bookstore and on your E-readers and order it too, if you want. 
To order The Manhattan Puzzle click here.
Or to visit my website click here.
And thanks for reading this and for buying The Manhattan Puzzle, if you do. I hope you find it entertaining and the themes interesting.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like an excellent book. Great to meet you, Laurence. And I'm always glad to meet another person who studied a bunch of different things before finding a path, I studied everything under the sun and still couldn't figure out what I wanted to do with my life. Think I finally have it now.
    Great tip too!

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