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The first summer after I came to the United States my parents sent me to spend the summer on the same farm in Bucks County, Pennsylvania where my father had spent his summers while growing up.

English: The midway at the Orange County Fair,...

At the end of haying season the farmer took us all for a day away from haying to the county fair. Like most everything those first few months away from my home in the Congo, everything was new, startling and amazing. I had never seen anything like the midway at a county fair.

One of the attractions was called, Power of Sound. I don’t remember what the banners in front of the tent said, but I remember the brilliant colors of: red, silver, gold, yellow, orange and the black of words and objects exploding. Continue reading

Body on the Church Steps – 2

From the first excerpt you remember that Radford is opening the church and looking through the front, plate-glass door of the church sees the naked body of a woman on the church steps. He decides that if she is dead there is nothing he can do for her, and if it is a publicity stunt he doesn’t want to get caught up in it.

Here is more from Body On the Church Steps; a new novel coming very soon from Second Wind Publishing.

churchstepsBODY ON THE CHURCH STEPS
By
Paul J. Stam

EXCERPT TWO

Radford walked back into the church and left by the side door. He used the back entrance to the classroom building, and after turning of the alarm walked through to the church offices. He went about emptying the wastebaskets. From time to time he would set down the plastic bag full of waste paper and walk to the window. He would part the blinds a little, and look out at her. Each time he looked out at her he became more certain that she was dead and that became increasingly more frightening. It was very unlikely that anyone would get naked to go and die on church steps of natural causes. He was certain therefore that she had been murdered and that he had made the right decision in not discovering a murder victim.

Although Radford had actually seen the body first, Pastor Bautista took credit for it. He approached from the parking lot behind the buildings. He was a short, stocky Filipino with straight, black hair and black eyes. He was wearing a Greek fisherman’s cap and an Aloha shirt of red and yellow Hibiscus flowers. He walked with a swagger as he made his way through the yard glancing to the left and the right looking for something about which he could be righteously angry. He noted that the leaves and fallen fruit had not been raked up from under the mango tree in the schoolyard. Children attending the pre-school would start arriving in half an hour, and the leaves and fruit were supposed to be cleaned up by then. Radford was supposed to rake up the fallen fruit first thing in the morning and it pleased Bautista that it had not yet been done it. It would give him something about which to scold Radford. Continue reading

Murder Sets Sail – 6

Going to look at the AHWANAH Myra has her fears affirmed when George says, “It’s a beautiful boat all right. Too bad we’ll have to sink it.” Her heart sank. What really frightened her was that he regretted having to destroy the boat, but not at all the man who owned it. And when she was no longer useful to him, he would get rid of her with no regrets either.

Murder Sets Sail is published by Second Wind Publishing.

Final MSS Cover frontMURDER SETS SAIL
by Paul J. Stam

CHAPTER FIVE

She had always thought it was her upbringing that made her discontented with her situation. There was always inside of her something that made her uncomfortable with George’s lack of morals and scruples. She wished in a way she could be as lacking in principle as George was, and yet at the same time she was glad she wasn’t like him. She didn’t owe anything to the poor slob whose boat they were going to use. What had he ever done for her? Nothing! That was just it. He had not done anything for her, but nor had he ever done anything against her. He was an innocent. He didn’t have any idea of what was happening. He was a poor fish about to bite on the lure that would raise him out of his water to his death. She had to warn him not to take the bait. If she could do that he would be saved and maybe the whole operation would fail. Then she would not be part of what she knew was going to end in at least one death, maybe more. If only George had not insisted she come along. Could she have gone on pretending she didn’t know anything? Continue reading

Love, Art and Treasures 1

Entrance

Welcome

Ka Waiwai Mohala – The Unfolding Treasures is the title of this year’s student art show at Windward Community College, University of Hawaii. It is an exhibition of work by outstanding students from the fine art studio classes. The show features the Atelier, ceramics, drawing, painting, printmaking and sculpture.

Chris Edwards is a consummate fabricator of unique art with clay. He also is endowed with a wonderful gift of perseverance. I like to call it a gift; that way I have an excuse for not sticking with things. After all, a gift is not something you can develop, but I digress…

Chris E BasketThis hanging basket is the result of several months of work and starting again when the first project went south through no fault of Chris’s. What you see here is his second attempt.

In this masterpiece there are more than a 100 triangles with a hole in each corner. These triangles were individually hand-made. In the first attempt he had them all connected with steel wire that the ceramics store owner, and the label on the package, assured him would withstand the heat of high firing. Well it didn’t. The wire melted, gluing the ceramic triangles together in weird shapes.

Well, Chris started all over again; firing each of the pieces separately for the bisque firing and then glazing for Raku firing.

Chris E pukaThe Puka Bowls (puka means holes in Hawaiian) are again individually hand-made. There is no mass punching of holes here, but each hole is individually made and different from the one next to it.

Eventually I will get around to taking about the things I have in the show, yep, I am a student; granted I take only one class each semester, and always in ceramics, but…

In the meantime you could take a look at some of the books I’ve written. My latest, Murder Sets Sail is no mystery, just a fun read.

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To learn more about my books, or read a little from them, click here.

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Final MSS Cover frontPageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00023]Murder Sets Sail is available from Second Wind Publishing and on Amazon. Kindle edition is only $4.99.

Another of Paul’s books, The Telephone Killer published by 2nd Wind Publishing is available on Amazon and from the publisher. Kindle and Nook versions just $4.99.

To watch The Telephone Killer video click here.

The Telephone Killer is now also available as an audiobook.

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R&R cover thumbC and G cov 1a smallTwo historical novels about colonial Congo where I was born and grew up are: Of Rulers and Ruled and Of Chiefs and Giants. The period covered is from 1885 when Leopold II of the Belgians claimed more than 900,000 million square miles of Central Africa as his private domain until independence in 1965. These books are available from Amazon. The Kindle  and Nook versions are only $5.99.

DES VOY cvrAnother recent novel of mine, Desperate Voyage, is a World War II story of courage, love, murder and an enemy attack on a British freighter. It is available from Amazon and the Kindle edition is only $5.99,

Witness coverStam_PaulTwo Christian novels; The Final Witness and A questions of Reputation are also available at Amazon.

Since everything is copyrighted please feel free to re blog any of my posts but please repost in its entirety and giving appropriate credit.

 

 

Telephone Killer – 30

Well now, that really was a bold move on the part of the Telephone Killer to just ride into ceremonies of the opening of the park and shoot the Lieutenant governor. But then he always has been daring. Poor Williams he’s about at his wits end with this case.

THE TELEPHONE KILLER
by Paul J. StamPageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00023]

CHAPTER THIRTY

Williams sat at his desk chastising himself for having been taken in with all the talk about the airport. If all the manpower had not been concentrated out there they might have caught the assassin. The latest reports were that the Lieutenant Governor was alive but in critical condition. Two vertebrae had been shattered and if he lived, he would never walk again. Little by little, the information was coming in. Ballistics had confirmed the gun was a 9-millimeter, the same gun that killed Officer Remke and John Crawford.

He had a copy of what Ginger took showing the rider approaching, shooting and getting away until he disappeared around the back of the children’s park. They had a witness who was with her three-year-old son in the children’s park who saw the rider go down into the gully and up the other side. He disappeared behind the arrangement of large, artificial stones that had been intended for children to climb and play on. There was no eyewitness who could place where he went from there, but they found the motorcycle behind the maintenance shed in the middle at the back of the enlarged park. Behind and on two sides of the shed lilac bush grew thick and tall. There was a space about four feet between where the lilacs were planted and the walls of the shed. The lilacs spread out as they grew up so at the top they were touching the eves of the roof. It was a dusty place where wild chickens liked to nest on hot days. Continue reading

Murder Sets Sail – 5

Myra can’t get out of it now. She is involved in a plan to murder someone and the is no way she can get out of it, or can she? Doesn’t look like it, but she’s a smart girl and really down deep is  good person, but is that enough?

 Murder Sets Sail is published by Second Wind Publishing.

Final MSS Cover frontMURDER SETS SAIL
by Paul J. Stam

CHAPTER FIVE

 The afternoon flight was right on time. In a window seat in the first class section, Myra Jenkins looked out of the window at her first view of green mountain islands with ribbons of white sand beaches. Looking down she was able to forget temporarily her fears of the past week.

That morning a limousine from a service, rather than one of the company limousines, took the three of them to the airport. They used their new passports, already stamped with Tahiti visas, for identification. George had been a little nervous with all the security checks that someone might recognize him before he got away. Even boarding the plane he paused for a moment to look around the first class compartment to see if there was anyone on board who might know him before going ahead of her to their seats. It was not till they were off the ground that he relaxed.

Now with the runway passing beneath her window Myra could feel his reserve and caution returning. They stayed in their seats after the plane stopped in order to be the last ones off the plane. In the terminal he gave Steve the ticket stubs instructing him to call on the cell phone when the luggage was in the taxi. George had decided to take his chances with a taxi rather than reserving a limousine in advance as Steve had suggested. “Less conspicuous,” he had said. Continue reading

Outrageous! Terrible! Scandalous!

This is terrible! It has to be murder. I mean, she didn’t die of a heart attack or something like that. No one gets undressed and then has a heart attack on the church steps. Some one had to kill her and then put her body there. But who? Surely not one of the pastors. Somebody must have done it to embarrass the church for some reason. These were some of the things people were thinking when they learned that a naked body had been found on the church steps of the First Aloha Tabernacle of Honolulu.

Here is a little from Body On the Church Steps; a new novel coming very soon from Second Wind Publishing.

churchstepsBODY ON THE CHURCH STEPS
By
Paul J. Stam

EXCERPT ONE

She was young, exceptionally beautiful, and except for her sheer lace panties, completely naked and very dead. She lay at the top of the steps that led up to the front of the church. If you stood in just the right place you could see two of her, her real self and her reflection in the large, plate-glass, front doors to the church. Her head was turned to hang over the top step with her long, blond hair cascading down over the next two steps. Her right arm lay stretched out on the second step and her left arm was thrown back over her head. She looked as though she had been arranged to have a picture taken for an art calendar or some magazine. It was hard to believe that someone so young and beautiful was dead. But then it was also hard to imagine anyone alive would be lying naked on the church steps.

In the early morning light it was too perfect a picture to contain death. Her open eyes looked up to the clear blue of the Hawaiian sky, which matched the color of her eyes. The white, billowing clouds drifted over the tops of the Ko`olau range just as they were supposed to. Hawaiian tradition said that if ever there were no clouds over those mountains the island would sink into the sea. Continue reading