Monday, February 19, 2018

Tom Nixon’s THE LONG LOST Virtual Book Tour


THE LONG LOST by Tom Nixon, Suspense, 418 pp., $9.99
(Kindle edition) $14.95 (paperback)





Title: THE LONG LOST

Author: Tom Nixon

Publisher: CreateSpace

Pages: 418

Genre: Suspense


The sudden and strange disappearance of Joel Thomas brings together his
ex-wife and best friend in a search for answers. As Mary and Jason seek
out the truth, their quest consistently turns up more questions than
clues. In another time, the story of a long-time group of college
friends plays out across 30 years of history, revealing the highs and
lows of a group that vowed to maintain their friendship until death. Is
the answer to Joel’s mysterious departure found in a simple note sent to
Mary, or is it locked somewhere back in time? Told in alternating
voices and timelines, Nixon’s The Long Lost tells a story of both
intrigue and suspense — along with sentimentality and introspection — as
he examines the painful discoveries realized when childhood friends
grow up…and grow apart.


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EVERYBODY knows someone like Joel Thomas.
I once heard someone describe him
as the man who was friendly with everyone...but friends with no one. Which
isn’t exactly true. It’s not that he was particularly at odds with any one
person, or even that he was standoffish. It’s just that, when it came to having
meaningful, deep friendships or relationships, there was nobody you could point
to and say, “Those two are very close.”
But yet, there he was. Joel was at
every party...every night out...every group outing. He seemed to like sports,
the arts, movies, TV, pop culture. He knew a little bit about everything, so he
always seemed to fit in, no matter what the occasion. But you were hard-pressed
to say why, if asked.
Joel was married for a little more than 16 years to Mary, a
woman he met in college during his study abroad program. They never had kids,
but they did acquire the obligatory dog and 2,500-square-foot ranch in the
suburbs. It was a normal life, if unspectacular. But that was Joel. Normal,
sure. But unspectacular. A man that was seemingly liked by all...but loved by
nobody in particular.
It would be a shock, then, when
Joel suddenly disappeared.
I got the call around 7:30 that night. Mary seemed put off, but not
frantic. I can’t tell you why I remember her demeanor in that way, only that it
seemed significant at the time. Was I expecting the reaction an actress might
have on a bad primetime cop show? I don’t know. Then again, Mary was Joel’s
mirror image in some ways, so a subdued (though, certainly distraught) state of
mind wasn’t entirely out of character. Still, it just seemed...different. Different
than what I’d suspect, but I wasn’t sure if it was meaningfully different, or
just different.
And I can’t claim to have been in
the proper state of mind to be a judge of such things. Not that night. It’s a
strange thing when you get “the call.” Or, in the movies, it’s the knock on the
door. If you’ve never been so unfortunate, you’ll know when it happens. I’ll
never forget watching my dad get the call when grandpa died. I’d never seen my
old man cry before. It was jarring. It was a shock, to be sure...but grandpa
was 84, and with a history of heart problems.
There’s a part of you that expects
it...one that has been waiting for such a call. There’s another part of you in
paralyzing shock. And there’s this weird part of you that starts immediately
and reflexively having the sort of reaction others might expect you to have.
Like you’re the one on the TV show. Call it, macabre exhilaration? This
is happening. It’s horrible. But it’s excitement, in a sick sort of way.
All
of those parts of you begin an instant quarrel inside of you for supremacy, and
it’s not until several hours, days or weeks later that reality sets in, and you
hate yourself for feeling anything other than grief.
“Jason? Hi, it’s Mary. Sorry for
calling so late.” A long, pregnant pause. “It’s Joel.”
Shit. Those words rang out like a
shotgun in the open prairie air. It’s Joel. Whatever came next, I knew it
wasn’t good. I immediately hunched down into a chair at the kitchen table. I’m
not sure if I said anything, let out a self-defeated groan, or just waited in
stunned silence for Mary to continue.
“It’s Joel. He’s not answering.”
“Not answering what?” I asked, now
grasping to a lifeline of hope. Maybe I got ahead of myself with needless
worry.
“Anything,” Mary responded,
immediately sucking the wind out of my hopeful sails. “The phone, texts, the
door. Normally I wouldn’t worry. We sometimes go weeks — maybe months — without
talking. In fact, we usually do.”
“So what’s the worry?”
Mary paused. I could tell there was
a “next part” that she didn’t want to get to. But she gave in. “It’s not
normal.”
“What’s not?” I pressed.
“To get something in the mail.”
“What something? Something in the
mail? From who? What was it?”
Another long pause.
“From Joel.”
“Mary, what are you saying? What
the hell happened? Spit it out.”
Mary started slowly and softly,
building both pace and volume as she continued. “I’ve been trying to get ahold
of Joel for a few days. We got a strange tax thing in the mail, and it didn’t
seem to make any sense, so I scanned it over to Joel last week. Followed up
with a phone call. No answer. Then the texts. Nothing.”
“Yeah…” I needed her to get to the
point.
“So I stopped by a couple days ago.
No answer at his place. His car was there, though. I kinda poked around a bit,
peeked in some windows...nothing. So I called the office. They said he’s on
vacation. So I started to calm down...didn’t think much of it.”
“There ya go,” I reassured her.
“He’s probably just out of the country or something. No cell service, ignoring
emails and stuff.”
“That’s what I thought,” she
continued. “Then I got this in the mail.”
“What?”
“A note. In a box. Like a cardboard
shipping box. It looked more like a parcel at first, with no return address.
But it was light...like a letter, you know? I opened the box, and there was
just this note in there.”
“Yeah?”
“Jason. It was Joel’s handwriting.”
“So? What did it say?”
And now, the longest, most silent,
pause.
“Mary, what did the letter say? Read
it to me.”
“Read it to you?”
“Yes! Read it to me!”
“No need to read it...I have it
memorized...it was only two words.”
“Mary, what the hell did the letter
say?”
A shorter pause. A softer voice. A
slower pace. Finally, Mary got to the point.
“Tell Jason.”






Tom Nixon is an
author and entrepreneur with writing credits to his name that span artistic
genres. He has written multiple novels, two screenplays, several short stories,
a children’s story, and has five music albums in his catalogue, for which he
wrote both music and lyrics. He discovered his passion for writing and reading
at an early age, going on to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the
University of Michigan. He resides in Michigan with his wife and children, along with
a couple of the canine variety.

His latest book
is the suspense novel, The
Long Lost
.

WEBSITE & SOCIAL LINKS:

WEBSITE
| TWITTER | FACEBOOK



Interview with Tom Nixon

How did you come up with name of this book? The Long Lost refers to a few different concepts at play in the novel. The most obvious is that one of the main characters disappears almost immediately, and is “lost” for a “long” time throughout practically the entire novel. The other reference is to the separate timeline in the book, which starts 30 years ago and makes it way towards the present, until it catches up with the present timeline at the end of the book. This alternate timeline follows the lives of a group of college friends who grow old and grow apart, eventually and regrettably becoming “long lost” best friends from another time in their lives. And lastly, the title is a reference to a character who laments the “long lost” love of his life, with whom he hopes to reunite.

Do you read yourself and if so what is your favorite genre? I was in English Major in college, so I grew up reading the classics. I moved on to a few more “modern classics” after college, such as John Irving’s work. These days, I like page-turners — books that keep you guessing until the very end. I’ve enjoyed several of Harlan Coben’s books, Dan Brown’s work, and the “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” series. Readers of The Long Lost might even recognize shades of two other books I liked, Gone Girl and The Time Traveler’s Wife.

Do you prefer to write in silence or with noise? Why? I prefer silence, but not complete science. Something in the background is beneficial...say, jazz music or an ocean’s wave lapping up on the shore...but nothing too distracting. Complete silence to me is as much of a distraction to me as a jack hammer outside my window.

What do you feel you can accomplish with this book? There were two objectives (call them “fears!”) that I had when I started writing the book. One, could I tell a story that would keep the reader guessing, even up to the very last page? And two, could I tell a page-turner suspense novel that actually had some depth and sentimentality to it? I tried to accomplish all of the above, and so far, reader response has been encouraging. But the main thing I hope to accomplish is to inspire others to attack big projects, complete New Year’s resolutions, and check off bucket-list items with gusto. Attack each day with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind!

What is your next project? I’m tempted to dust off my musical past to write and record another CD. But writing another novel doesn’t so daunting anymore either!









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