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Friday 29 January 2016

☀☄ Dark Money: Jack Bryant [2] - Larry D. Thompson

Thank you for joining us on the Virtual Book Tour for Dark Money, a Legal Thriller by (, Story Merchant Books, 430 pages).

This is the second book in the Jack Bryant series.

PREVIEW: Check out the book's synopsis and excerpt below.  Read the first three chapters with Amazon Look Inside.  Dark Money is FREE on Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Owner's Lending Library.

**Grab your copy for FREE until the end of TODAY, Friday 29 January 2016!**

Author Larry D. Thompson will be awarding a $15 Amazon to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

Please do take part: comment on our post and follow the tour where you will be able to read other excerpts (☀), interviews (ℚ), reviews (✍) and guest blog posts (✉).

Synopsis | Teaser | The Series | About the Author | Giveaway & Tour Stops


Jackson Bryant, the millionaire plaintiff lawyer who turned to pro bono work in Dead Peasants, is caught up in the collision of money and politics when he receives a call from his old army buddy Walt Frazier. Walt needs his assistance in evaluating security for Texas Governor Rob Lardner at a Halloween costume fundraiser thrown by one of the nation's richest Republican billionaires at his mansion in Fort Worth.

Miriam Van Zandt is the best marksman among The Alamo Defenders, an anti-government militia group in West Texas. She attends the fundraiser dressed as a cat burglar--wounds the governor and murders the host's brother, another Republican billionaire. She is shot in the leg but manages to escape.

Jack is appointed special prosecutor and must call on the Texas DPS SWAT team to track Van Zandt and attack The Alamo Defenders' compound in a lonely part of West Texas. Van Zandt's father, founder of the Defenders, is killed in the attack and Miriam is left in a coma. The authorities declare victory and close the case-but Jack knows better. The person behind the Halloween massacre has yet to be caught. When Walt and the protective detail are sued by the fundraiser host and the widow of the dead man, Jack follows the dark money of political contributions from the Cayman Islands to Washington to Eastern Europe, New York and New Orleans to track the real killer and absolve his friend and the Protective Detail of responsibility for the massacre.

Dark Money is a thriller, a mystery and an expose of the corruption of money in politics caused by the Supreme Court's decision in Citizens United.

Teaser: Excerpt


     The convoy of three troop trucks made its way through the northeastern part of Saudi Arabia on their way to join up with other American troops in Dhahran. Jack Bryant, a lawyer from Texas who was called up from his practice in Beaumont, was riding shotgun in the front truck. He was a sergeant and the senior NCO in the convoy. They passed through several villages deserted or nearly so out of fear of the rapidly moving Iraq army. The convoy approached another village, apparently abandoned, when Jack raised his hand.
     “Stop. I saw a glint of metal in a balcony about a hundred yards ahead on the right and then it disappeared. I’m getting out my side and will use the door as a shield. Open your door as quietly as possible. Go back to the men and tell them to maintain complete silence. I don’t even want to hear the click of a cigarette lighter until I signal.”
     The driver was a young private named Walt Frazier, also a Texan from the small town of Wharton. He nodded as he opened the driver’s door and dropped from the truck. He made his way back to the other vehicles, delivering the message. Jack propped his rifle on the open window ledge and watched the balcony, occasionally flicking his eyes around the rest of the village but seeing no movement. Walt returned and settled into his seat. “See anything, Sarge?”
     “Not yet, but I think he’s there, just waiting to ambush us when we pass. We can outwait him.”
     Seconds turned into minutes. Jack continued to focus on the balcony. After twenty minutes the driver was thinking that his sergeant must have been imagining something when a head slowly surfaced above the wall on the balcony. Jack waited until he could see the mouth and fired one round, striking the Iraq sniper directly between the eyes. The enemy soldier dropped from sight.
     Bryant climbed back into his seat and told his driver they could now move out.
     “You sure, Sarge? Could be you only wounded him.”
     “Trust me. I don’t miss from this distance. He’s dead. Let’s get going. I hope we’ll still have a little light when we get to the barracks.”
      The convoy stopped in front of an abandoned oil field warehouse close to dusk on February 25, 1991. The concrete reflected heat of 104 degrees as the American troops piled out of the trucks to assemble around their sergeant. The men were young, around twenty, many younger, a few slightly older. Most of them had joined the National Guard, expecting to spend a weekend every month with units close to their homes as a means of paying college tuition or supplementing income from their regular jobs. Very few ever expected to see combat. That was before Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait and President Bush began Operation Desert Storm.
      Sergeant Bryant waited until they quietened before he spoke. A part-time soldier himself, he was not much for military formalities. “Listen up. This warehouse has been converted to a barracks. It’s not air conditioned, but there are large fans that will cut the temperature by ten or fifteen degrees, and it’s February; so the temperature tonight ought to drop to around eighty. You’ll find cots inside and they’re setting up a chow line. Latrine is around back. Enjoy the luxury. It’ll probably be the last night you’ll have a roof over your head for a while, and it’ll damn sure be your last hot meal until we’re finished with this son of a bitch.”
      “How long is this war going to last?” one of the men asked.
      “The flyboys have been pounding the hell out of the Iraq forces. The ground war started yesterday. We’ll be heading to the front tomorrow. The word from General Schwarzkopf’s headquarters is that they can’t hold out much longer.”
      “Sarge, I hear they’re using Scuds. Is that going to be a problem?”
      The sergeant shook his head. “Shouldn’t be around here. This area is protected by Patriot missiles. They’ve been damn successful in knocking Scuds out of the air. Now, grab your gear and pick a bunk.” He glanced at his watch. “Chow line should be open in fifteen minutes. After that, clean your weapons one more time.”
      “Come on, Sarge. Mine are cleaner than a fresh washed-baby’s butt.”
      “I hear you, but one more time, just for good measure. Then, get a good night’s sleep. It may be your last for a few days.”
      By eight o’clock the chow line was closed and weapons had been cleaned. Some of the men were playing penny-ante poker, using a bunk for a table. Some were writing letters back to wives, girlfriends or moms. Others had taken off their boots and lay on top of their sleeping bags, fully clothed, packs and weapons close at hand. Six of the troops were members of the National Guard from Texas, including Sergeant Bryant, the “old man” of the outfit at thirty. He had served in the 101st Airborne after finishing college and was beginning a law practice in Beaumont when President Bush came calling. The Texans bunked close to each other. Bryant had struck up a friendship with Frazier. He was one of the guard members who planned to serve his six years, mainly on weekends, as a means of paying his tuition at the local college.
      They talked about their families, the just completed football season, and soon ran out of topics as, one by one, they closed their eyes, knowing that four o’clock the next morning would come far too soon. Walt was drifting into sleep when he heard a whistling sound and someone shouted, “Incoming!” Walt dove under his bunk, as if that would provide any protection from the missile that crashed through the metal roof and exploded, slinging fiery shrapnel from one end of the warehouse to the other.
      Next came screams of pain as smoke filled the building. Then the beams that supported the ceiling buckled and, along with the jagged, tin roof, began to fall on the troops, inflicting more injury and death. Walt crawled from under his cot and witnessed the devastation. He tried to pull another man from under a cot across the aisle by tugging on his leg. Horrified, he realized that the leg was not attached to a body. Dropping it, he looked around. Some men were lying motionless, probably dead. Others were holding gaping wounds in their abdomens. Still others were trapped under beams and pieces of the roof, begging for help.
      Through all the screams and yelling, somehow Walt heart Jack, speaking in a surprisingly low voice, “Walt, I need some help here.”
      Walt turned to find his sergeant’s leg trapped under a beam.
      “Can you get this thing off me?”
      Walt considered his options and dropped to his back on the floor. “Sarge, I’m going to try to get my feet under it and push it up with my legs. If I can get it up a few inches, you think you can scrabble out from under it?”
      Jack nodded. “Give it a try.”
      Walt positioned his feet and strained so hard that the blood vessels in his temples were bulging. The beam didn’t budge. “Let me rest just a few seconds. I’m going to move my feet down a little and try again.”
      This time when he drove his legs, the beam started to move.
      “One more inch, Walt, and I think I can get out.”
      Walt shoved the beam again and the beam moved a few more inches. Jack was having to force himself through the pain shooting throughout his leg, but he made it. Walt lowered his feet and sucked in a breath. After a few seconds, he got to his feet. “Can you walk?”
      Outside he could hear sirens. Ambulances were on the way. “Not without some help.”
      “I’m going to pull you up. Put your arm over my shoulder.”
      Jack screamed as Walt pulled. “I’m all right. Just get me out of here.”
      Walt sized up the devastation around them and started picking his way through debris and bodies. Some of the men cried to him for help, fearful that another missile might land at any minute. “I’ll be back as soon as I get Bryant out to the ambulances.”
      When he arrived at the door, someone was opening it from the outside. “Here, let me help.” They moved Jack to a blanket where they lowered him to the ground. “I’m a medic. Let me have a look at that leg.”
      The leg just above the knee and the knee itself was crushed. “Any other injuries? How about your head?”
      “No, just my leg,” Jack replied through the pain etching his face.
      “I’m going to get you something for that pain. Just lie still and an ambulance will take you to the base hospital. You’ll be on a flight to Landstuhl in the morning. They have surgeons in Germany that can deal with this.”
      “If I pass out, tell them not to cut off my leg.”
      The medic nodded. Walt was listening to the exchange. “I’m going back inside.” He turned and walked back to the door and into the building. Over the next several hours he made ten more trips, returning each time with a seriously wounded soldier. After the ones who were still alive were rescued, he was part of the team that retrieved the bodies. When daylight broke, he dropped to sit against a truck and buried his head in his arms as sobs wracked his body.

Dark Money
FREE on Fri 29 Jan 2016!

UK: purchase from US: purchase from purchase from Barnes & Noble find on Goodreads

The Series: Jack Bryant

The Jack Bryant series is FREE on Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Owner's Lending Library.

Click on the book cover to Look Inside the book on Amazon and read an excerpt.

Dead Peasants [1]

Veteran trial lawyer Larry D. Thompson has decades of courtroom experience in his home state of Texas on controversial and important trials. Now, in Dead Peasants, Thompson has delivered a fast-moving and suspenseful legal thriller featuring a retired lawyer whose life gets turned upside down when a stranger asks for help.

Jack Bryant, exhausted after a high-profile career as a lawyer, takes an early retirement in Fort Worth, Texas, where he plans to kick back, relax, and watch his son play football at TCU. But then an elderly widow shows up with a check for life insurance benefits and that is suspiciously made payable to her dead husband’s employer, Jack can’t turn down her pleas for help and files a civil suit to collect the benefits rightfully due the widow. A chain of events that can’t be stopped thrusts Jack into a vortex of killings, and he and his new love interest find themselves targets of a murderer.

Gripping, engaging, and written with the authority that only a seasoned lawyer could possess, Dead Peasants is a legal thriller that will stun and surprise you.

[First Published 2 October 2012; this edition 2 January 2013, 303 pages]

About the Author

Larry D. Thompson is a veteran trial lawyer and has drawn on decades of experience in the courtroom to produce riveting legal thrillers.

After graduating from the University of Texas School of Law, Thompson founded the Houston trial firm where he still serves as managing partner.

The proud father of three grown children, he lives and works in Texas but spends his summers in Colorado, where he crafts his novels and hikes the mountains surrounding Vail. His greatest inspiration came from Thomas Thompson, his brother, who wrote many best-selling true-crime books and novels.

Follow Larry D. Thompson:

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Giveaway and Tour Stops

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25 Jan just reviews
26 Jan Brooke Blogs
26 Jan Writers and Authors
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27 Jan The Book Diva's Reads
29 Jan BooksChatter
31 Jan Mythical Books ℚ☀
3 Feb Romance Under Fire
3 Feb Kim's Bookish Place
4 Feb 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & sissy, Too!
8 Feb FictionZeal ☀
13 Feb Hott Books ℚ
29 Feb Jersey Girl Books ✉ ✍


Unknown said...

Wow, thanks for the post! There is so much information here.
Looks like a great book!

Gina @ Hott Books said...

What a beautiful post! Thanks for introducing us!!