Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Vanishing Wife NBtM

How far will a man go when his family is threatened?  Mason Seaforth is about to find out. He is a mild mannered accountant living a quiet, idyllic life in the quiet community of Gulfport, Florida with his wife, Samantha.  At least, it’s quiet and idyllic until Sami, as she’s known to her friends, vanishes the night of their 20th anniversary.

Mason is thrown into a life that is meant for other people as he and their brash friend, Marcie Kane, try everything to find out what has happened to Sami.  A search of Sami’s computer uncovers notes describing a past that Sami has buried for more than 20 years.  Then come the threatening phone calls: to Sami, to their daughter Jennifer at university in Miami, and to Mason.

Mason and Marcie are thrust into a race against a sadistic killer to discover what has happened to Mason’s wife. He reluctantly exchanges his spreadsheets for a Glock 17 and he and Marcie follow a trail left behind by Sami which leads them to a potential confrontation with some very dangerous men in Canada.  Mason is required to make decisions that he could never imagine himself making and each one has deadlier consequences than the last. The wrong one could result in the death of his entire family.  

Mason Seaforth was waiting.

It was 6 o’clock in the morning and the darkness in the suburbs had begun to ease. The sun would soon make its appearance for another day, causing the shadows to beat a hasty retreat. Mason was now restlessly sitting on the couch in the sunroom that belonged to him and his wife Samantha, or Sami as she was known to her friends. He was staring at the walls and thinking that if he smoked, now would be a good time to light one up.

He hated waiting. Mason was a very punctual man and had always had the attitude that everyone’s time is precious. He never wanted to give the impression that his time was more valuable than anyone else’s. His wife was no different. She had always had the same attitude as he did, and together they’d earned the reputation of being the “Early Seaforths.” That’s what made this so unusual and frightening at the same time.

Mason was waiting for Sami.

Barry, thanks so much for stopping by. So, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself?
Thanks for having me. I live in Ottawa, Canada with my wife, Evelyn. We have two sons and three grandchildren. I have been retired from the Canadian federal government for awhile now after a number of roles in the finance area. In 2009, I climbed Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro with one of our sons and we have been raising money for the children of Tanzania ever since. My wife and I went back in 2011 to see the projects and the gratitude they exhibited was amazing. I was fortunate enough to receive the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal in 2013 for my philanthropic work in Tanzania but that was really a bonus for me. The real satisfaction is the look on the kids’ faces, knowing that they have access to clean water and an opportunity to be educated.  

How did you get started writing?
I wrote financial policy in the federal government for about ten years so that’s where I honed my skills. The climb of Kilimanjaro led to my first book, Kilimanjaro and Beyond: A Life-Changing Journey. It was written with input from my son who climbed with me. I didn’t climb with the intention of writing a book. I realized after that it was something I wanted (or maybe needed) to do.

What was the inspiration for your book?
I did a number of presentations after the climb and realized our story was inspirational to people. I climbed at age 60 and after a sedentary career it took some preparation to do. Our story about getting off the couch and doing something for ourselves and others was really a book waiting to be written. There is nothing more satisfying than reaching a goal and helping others reach theirs and to be able to write about just made it that much better.    

What’s the one genre you haven’t written in yet that you’d like to?
I would like to try writing a children’s book sometime. With three young grandchildren who have no inhibitions about saying the first thing that pops into their heads, I have the perfect critics.

Are there any genres you won’t read or write in? Why?
The obvious one that I won’t be writing is erotica. I have nothing against the genre and I have reviewed some great erotica books, but I am quite sure I would not be good at it.

So, what are you working on right now? Got any releases planned, or still writing?
Right now I’m in the promotion stage for my latest release, The Vanishing Wife. I’m starting to think about a storyline for my next book, which just may involve some of the same characters as the last one, but I’m in no hurry to get started on it. Once I start, it should move pretty quickly…at least, that’s been the history.

Alright, now for some totally random, fun questions. Favorite color?
I have always been partial to blue.

Favorite movie?
I like action movies but they don’t really stick with me. This may come as a surprise to some but the one movie that I really enjoyed and can watch over again is Pretty Woman. I think Richard Gere and Julia Roberts are fantastic in that movie and I just like the storyline.

Book that inspired you to become an author?
I can’t think of one book that inspired me to be an author. I’m always intrigued by books that grab your attention at the beginning and hold it throughout.

Alright, you have one superpower. What is it?
That’s easy. I dislike flying more and more so I would like to be able to transport myself from one place to another. Of course, somehow my golf clubs would have to be able to come with me. I hope someone is working on that.

You can have dinner with any 3 people, dead, alive, fictitious, etc. Who are they?
I would like to be able to know my parents better so they would be two. I grew up on a farm so my dad worked all the time. I feel I didn’t know him that well. I would have a tough time whittling down to a third because there are so many. I think it would have to be a great leader, like Nelson Mandela.

Last question: Which of your characters are you most like and how/why?
Mason Seaforth, the mild-mannered accountant in The Vanishing Wife, is modeled somewhat after me. I wanted him to be as realistic as possible as he faced an extremely difficult situation. I didn’t want him turning into a superhero. He would be my choice.  

December 11: Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews
December 18: Long and Short Reviews
January 1: Deal Sharing Aunt
January 8: It's Raining Books
January 15: Straight from the Library
January 22: FictionZeal REVIEW ONLY
January 29: Sharing Links and Wisdom
February 5: Booklover Sue
February 12: Room With Books
February 19: Undercover Book Reviews REVIEW ONLY
February 26: Bunny's ReviewREVIEW

Author Bio and Links:
In 2009, Barry Finlay went up a mountain as an accountant and came down as a philanthropist. After over thirty years in various financial roles with the Canadian federal government, he took his life in a different direction and climbed Africa’s Mount Kilimanjaro at age sixty with his son Chris. The climb and their fundraising efforts to help kids in Tanzania led to the award-winning book, Kilimanjaro and Beyond: A Life-Changing Journey. He followed that up with the hilarious travel memoir, I Guess We Missed The Boat, which was named Best Travel Book of 2013 by Reader Views. Now, he has completed his debut fiction book, The Vanishing Wife. Barry was named to the Authors Show’s list of “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading” in 2012. In 2013, he received the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medal for his philanthropic work in Africa. He lives in Ottawa, Canada with his wife Evelyn.

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  1. Thanks for the interview! I had a great time doing it.

  2. I have enjoyed learning about the book. Thanks for sharing it.

  3. Barry Finlay is a very determined man. Impressive !