Deep Cherry Red

BEST TO DATE

Immediately out of package, I began reading and could not stop.  This is truly A Page Turner!  Each word is set down with clear intention, nothing extraneous to get in the way. Direct and purposeful, the level of entertainment remains constant throughout, to my mind an amazing feat to pull off.  I was gripped from first page to the very end, no wonder Bickford was a Finalist for Best First Novel, International Thriller Writers Awards!

P. D. Cardoza, Discerning Reader and [as yet Unpublished] Writer.

FIG'S A DANCE

I use to read a lot... Time and life got in the way...I stepped into Caves in the Rain and never stopped until Deep Cherry Red...  (W.K.)

Another excellent outing for Nate and Annie

The author hit his stride with a perfect balance of plot and setting that showcase characters you cannot forget.
Who would expect a Japanese ghost and lost love? (J.L.)

Signs and Portents

Nate and Annie are lingering dangerously long in California. Nate has accepted a trio of bizarre cases which are treading too close to Home. Ghosts and gangsters are none too happy. In addition to sleuthing it up, Nathan knows the longer they reside in Santa Teresa, the greater the chance Annie will be recognized and he might lose her forever. Perhaps it’s time to cut bait, if only Nate can figure out his sixes from nines there might be a happy ending. (R.C.)

Hau Tree Green

...the past is closer than you think. Bickford's spin on the uncanny is precise and chilling.

                                  (Nyla Matuk, author of Stranger)

Deftly probes the seething undercurrents of gritty intrigue, desire and sweet yearning.

                                  (Joanna Kafarowski, author of

                                      The Polar Adventures of a Rich American Dame)

Stylish Noir with elements of Magical Realism 

Bickford is an imaginative writer who creates vivid scenarios...and characters with depth and complexity in a plot worthy of the best noir writers. (J.A.)

Another great read from a favorite author!

Love , magic and mystery in noir LA! Lush scenes and fascinating characters with a strange tale.
I highly recommend it. (J.V.L.)

Everything Is On The Line For Nate Crowe This Time

Nate Crowe is summoned back from Corazon Rosa by the dangerous and mysterious Fin. Time to return the favor that saved Annie's life. In order to succeed, Crowe must discover the literal "needle in the haystack," a small item of such value that lives are inconsequential. Can Nate keep his promises to his wealthy clients, his criminal friends, and beloved Annie - or will he be swept away by rising Egyptian tides? (R.C.)

I can figure out how most books are going to end but NEVER BICKFORD'S BOOKS.  NEVER! 

I love them. I hope he writes forever. (L.C.)

A Song for Chloe

Imaginative and Bold

Time is a map, and Bickford takes you across a linear line that leads to a worthy finish. Love has no barriers, but it can have obstacles of the inhuman and wicked kind. I enjoyed the journey, as well as the stirring, but perfectly perfect ending. (P.K.)

 

Someone needs a hero
If you love romance and the suspense of otherworldly spirits slipping in and out of our world with intentions ranging from uncertain to evil, this is the book for you. (C.B.)

Wonderful read

Loved it, cover to cover. (R.C.)

Read this

Okay, I'm a bona fide Bob Bickford fan and am not ashamed to admit it. Once again Bickford has managed to tell a scary story with great beauty and sensitivity. This is another of the Hollow Lake tales, this one a love story, with a terrifying hook. A fairy tale with the right number of nice folks and a few really bad bad ones.   (A.B.)

Perfect...and did I mention 'ghost'?

A reclusive man that has become his own island must remember how he got to be who he has become in order to move forward with his life. Enter Chloe, a girl he barely remembers from his youth: Old soul, shiny penny, a kaleidoscope of mystery, a touch of pink, perfect, and did I mention "ghost?" Nick sees in Chloe the novel he has been wanting to write, needing to write. Chloe promises him a story, but the desperate author and his story telling ghost each have their own agendas.   (R.C.)

another winner

I wonder often if Bickford has ever seen a ghost?  ...he's got it down pat and I hope he never changes his style.  HOWEVER, he's hard on my sleeping habits.  It will be time for this day to end so, I figure I'll finish this chapter and turn out the lights and then 2 chapters later I think that as soon as I finish this chapter.... (L.K.)

Caves in the Rain

 Girls in Pink

Deadly Kiss 

 

 Best-seller Contender

A magnificent book, full of lush prose, memorable characters, fascinating insights into what makes people's lives go awry and what rights them again. Deadly Kiss is one of those books that leaves you full as you turn the last page, but knowing you'll think about the story long into the future. Bickford is a major talent. I'll be reading his books as fast as he can deliver them. (S.R.)

My new favorite author

One of those books you can read again and again just for the atmosphere...highly recommended. (E.S.)

Beautifully written, engaging and timeless  

 I would love to see students comparing/contrasting this with "To Kill a Mockingbird."

(P.N.)

Great book!

I was so pleased to see the characters and setting from Bickford's first book, Caves in the Rain, back again. The story though, was totally different but equally gripping right from the riveting opening that echoed the tragedies that helped spark the civil rights struggles of the last century. The tale is effectively told through present action and flashbacks. favourite character? Eli.   (W.)

Five Stars

A page turner that kept me up late every time I picked it up and a surprise ending! (DS)

Intriguing and insightful ...

  … If you can get past the disturbing events that connect the lives of this book’s main characters, you are in for a treat. A well-written and intriguing story that touches the soul. Love, hate, trust and deception all intertwine as the protagonist tries to make sense of his father’s life and death. Characters he meets along the way offer some wise comments on human nature, showing the author’s insightfulness and making me want to read more of his works. (J.)

Great read

The story flashes back between modern times and mid century Southern USA. The switches are smooth and not confusing and tie together an interesting mystery. In the flash backs, I am reminded somewhat of books such as To Kill a Mockingbird and Time to Kill that deal with the severe racial prejudice and lack of justice in the legal system of the era. The modern times segments are an engrossing mystery with interesting characters. There are some paranormal elements but they are not distracting to someone like me who doesn't usually like paranormal stories. (MSK)

Compelling and Suspenseful

This story drew me in immediately. I felt like I was there in that hot Georgia Summer day where it all begins. It tells the story of how one seemingly innocuous event can alter people's lives forever and even the generation after. It delves into the ugly side of American history (racism) and how hatred of that nature spawned an unfortunate series of events for all who were involved, directly and indirectly. Deadly Kiss is fiction, but it could so easily have happened in the Jim Crow South and that makes it all the more palpable and shocking. Bob Bickford's style of writing is so beautifully detailed and has a way of actually making you feel like you are part of the scene - like a quiet observer in a corner of the room. I highly recommend this book if you enjoy page turners. It is well worth your time. The only problem is you will be hooked and it will leave you wanting more of this author's collection. :-)  (M.L.)

 

Unforgettable re-interpretation

An eponymous event of the Civil Rights struggles of mid 20th Century, the lynching death and open-casket funeral of 14-year-old Emmett Till is the inspiration for this sad and terrifying tale. Love, regret and revenge over 60 years of people who refuse to be forgotten, by history, or by you. Ugly story, beautifully told. (C.B.)

 

Part mystery, part romance

Bob Bickford is a fresh voice with a great command of prose who sends us on a journey inside a family history tangled in a tragic event where the paranormal gives clues. It's a faced-paced and thought-provoking story showing how reaching into the past can heal the present. Set in Canada and the U.S., Bickford does a wonderful job of setting atmosphere in time and space for his characters to inhabit.  (D.A.)

Sleepless in Toronto...

Deadly Kiss by Bob Bickford.... Well it's been a long while since a man has kept me up most of the night... Couldn't put this down and now I'm just sad it's finished. One of the best books I ever read.... Well done Mr Bickford!   (S.B.)

Add this new Author to your list of "must follow."

This authors ability to paint a vivid picture with simple words will grab your attention right from the first page. In 5 short paragraphs, a short story in it's own right, he gives us a full description of a child's love and trust of his father. We slide back to hot, humid Georgia of the 60's and a child's prank, a kiss. Then forward, on the wind of social upheaval and change, to present day in a small cabin on a cool Canadian island. With a ghost to guide him, Mike Latta tries to solve the mystery of his father's secret. He finds himself in the process. Author Bob Bickford tells a good story in Deadly Kiss. Can't wait for his next story.   (E.K.)

A fantastic, can't-put-it-down book.

History, Ghosts, Murder, Romance and different Geographical locations all rolled into one, darn good, don't want it to end, but can't stop reading it type of book. The many very insightful, and thought provoking scenarios, allows the reader to feel the pain, the sorrow,the hatred and guilt that makes up these very memorable characters. I very much enjoyed this wonderful book and will eagerly await his next book. Thank you Bob Bickford for an amazing Novel, and please hurry with your next one.

Five Stars

Bob Bickford has become a new favorite...looking forward to more...Looking for a good read ...this is it.   (M.J.)

 

Thank you for such a lovely book 

I often read too fast but this was such a beautifully written book I found myself slowing down and savoring every page. The characters felt so real and nothing about the book was frightening - far more emotional. I cannot wait for more from Bickford.  (S.L.)

A Kiss for the Ages

Love lasts as memories and ghosts move in and out of our brief time here. A surprise ending and a new life.  (Y.M.)

A must-read from a great new writer 

Touching, exciting, and mysterious by turns, this is a splendid read by an exciting new voice. Bickford's writing is atmospheric and lyrical, and he tells a compelling story. (M.F.)

 

 

Gorgeous writing 

How can I say that when this book describes the horrors of "southern justice" and how secrets can wreck lives? Well, Bickford does it beautifully--another contradiction in terms. But his characters grab you, wrap themselves around you, and make you forget that they are fictional. I hope to meet Mike Latta again, and some of the other denizens of Hollow Lake.  (A.B.)

Remarkably beautiful and unforgettable 

Deadly Kiss is a gem of a novel. Bob Bickford combines brilliant descriptive powers and skilful mastery of atmosphere with first-rate storytelling. He is blessed with the rare ability to engage us in the pleasures of immersive, stay-up-all-night reading. (A.L.B.)

The past is never dead. It's not even past 

 “Deadly Kiss” propelled me the way a good novel does, with a plot that kept me wondering what was going to happen next and characters who made me care about the answer. A hard book to classify: It’s not really a murder mystery, though there are several violent deaths and a number of mysteries surrounding them, including one that is answered only in the closing minutes. There’s even a colorful detective. It’s not really a ghost story, though ghosts do keep turning up, sometimes to the benefit of the nonghosts and sometimes not. They have their own agenda. In the end it’s really a love story about a couple of not-always-easy people carrying some baggage. You’ll find yourself rooting for them. Also you’ll learn something about pie, always a worthwhile subject.  (W.W.)

Riveting

A fabulous debut novel that kept me hooked from beginning to end. The author has carefully crafted a riveting story, rich in detail and historical ambiance, intertwined with never ending suspense and ghostly events. Couldn't put it down. (R.M.)

Your newest favorite author 

Great read! How often do you find a book with an exciting plot, great dialogue, engaging characters and vivid descriptions!?
This is such a well crafted novel! A great read. Highly recommended! (J.L)

Pleasure to Read

This novel is based on a real and tragic event in the recent history of America, and the author is a born story-teller with a gift for description and narration. I anticipate a second and a third novel soon to come. (A.R.)

Delicious, suspenseful, thought provoking 

I am always searching for an author who measures up. Bob Bickford's words are elegant, his story telling is lovely. Deadly Kiss is one of those novels that you will want to savor--don't rush through this! My interest was caught in the first few sentences, and I did not want to put this down. I cannot wait until his next effort!  (W.R.)

A Gripping Tale of Death and Discovery 

Ghosts, people who can see and interact with ghosts, and the intricate web across time of mystery and intrigue as the protagonist struggles with the discovery of past events and present conflicts with family and loved ones. Bob Bickford tells the tale through a clever use of flashbacks and ghost visitations and immerses us in a world of nature and culture on both sides of the border, from the deep south of the USA to the northern Canadian land of lakes and cottages. I cared deeply for the central characters whose lives were changed forever by one kiss. We question our own judgment and moral landscape as we flip through the pages to discover the truth. I have not finished a book so quickly in years. The beauty of "Deadly Kiss" is that you want to read it again, even though the secret has been revealed by the end of the story. Immerse yourself in the world of Bob Bickford's mesmerizing tale, "Deadly Kiss". (C.G.)

Five Stars

Fantastic read. Couldn't put it down once I started. For all unaware of Bob Bickford and looking for an unforgettable read. This story is inspired by a real-life Civil Rights era event: the lynching and subsequent open-casket funeral of 14-year-old Emmett Till. But it is far more than that: a suspenseful ghost story you won't want to put down, but so beautifully written you want to slow it down and savour every syllable. This is the first, of what's sure to be many. (C.R.)

EXCELLENT 

Well... the worst has happened. I finished DEADLY KISS. I didn't intend to do that... I wanted to drag it out for weeks. I wept at the end, partly because of how the story closed and partly because I had no more pages to turn. What strikes me most about DEADLY KISS -- apart from the outstanding character development, plot lines, moving seamlessly in and out of different times -- are the love and compassion with which the ghosts are created and defined. I was a little afraid that I'd be a little afraid but, instead, the writing made me want to interact with several people I know who have passed on. I'm hoping to read more of this author, and soon! (C.C.)

Timely and engaging

Loved this novel. I was drawn to it because of the topic and the connection to the Emmett Till story, and it proved well worth the effort. Engaging, and an emotionally intense and believable story by an exciting new literary voice. (N.M.)

Fabulous 

 purchased this debut novel directly from the publisher when it was first released. It's so well written, descriptive, full of suspense and unexpected twists. It's definitely worth the read. Perfect timing for adding it to a gift list for the upcoming holiday season. (R.M)

Absorbing, moving and intelligent 

Deadly Kiss is a gem of a novel. Bob Bickford combines brilliant descriptive powers and skilful mastery of atmosphere with first-rate storytelling. He is blessed with the rare ability to engage us in the pleasures of immersive, stay-up-all-night reading. (A.L.B.)

Excellent and engaging story

I loved this book, and I found it engaging and thought provoking. I am teaching a class this term in university that deals with the real world events of Emmett Till, and so Bickford's topic caught my attention. Intense storytelling and a feel for the period made this a novel worth reading. (N.M.)

Page turner

This book is eloquently written, infused with history and full of suspense -- I couldn't put it down! (J.D.)

Great use of an historic event

...to create a suspenseful modern novel.

Excellent story-telling based on an actual historic event. All of the elements needed for a good, suspenseful read. I can't think of a single emotion not elicited by this book at some point. (C.B.)

As much fun as a drive in a convertible down the California coast

      ...in a near post-coital-esque glow, from the simple beauty of the writing. A gripping page-turner in high gear, with delicious descriptive downshifts into sights and scents, up and down like the wildfires and ocean surf.

“Everything perfect begins with an ending”.  (C.R.)

  transports us to 1940s Santa Teresa, California.  

  We follow gumshoe Nate Crowe along dark streets and into late night greasy spoons, where he seems most comfortable. His brave and relentless pursuit of justice will have you trailing him with trepidation into dangerous sketchy places like the Star-lite Lounge when common sense says "no." His illusive neighbor, Annie Kahlo, is so beautifully nuanced, that it is no wonder she leaves Nate wanting for more to the point of tempting fate and willfully putting his own life in jeopardy. Bickford's writing beautifully captures the timeless story of what makes the journey worthwhile; truth, justice and ultimately love. (M.L.R.)

Echoes of Chandler

...a refreshing flash out of the past with echoes of Chandler, Hammett, and a bit of Ross MacDonald on the side... a fun read with a few surprises along the way. Bickford is a gifted writer and one I look forward to reading in the future. (J.A.)

Loving this author

Another winner for Bob Bickford. Mysterious lady, great atmosphere, well drawn bad guys. 40's noir. Great description. If you haven't read Mr. Bickford yet, you're in for a unique treat. (P.M.)

This book is everything you want

...and more, if you are tempted by a suspenseful, noir, ghost story. You won't want to put it down until you are finished. (P.N.)

Refined and intriguing

One of Bickford's many talents is to take you places, and periods in time, with the full sensation of the sights and sounds. I felt the 40's in California while reading this book. It was a lovely experience. The two main characters border on being magnetized opposites. One complex, one straight forward, but like most people, there is more than what you see on the surface. For me, this book was a fine cocktail mixed with fate, justice, romance, and in true Bickford style, ghosts. Loved it and look forward to more Nate and Annie. (P.K.)

This is what a detective story should be!

If you like noir fiction and film noir you will love this book. The main character is truly a hero trapped in a web of lies and deceit with a serial killer lurking nearby. (C.B.)

Read this

Just about the best ghost story I have ever read. On a par with Deadly Kiss. Both books have blown me away. Although the story is terrific, it's the writing that has me riveted. Bickford's sensibilities are second to none. Hope the next book comes out soon. (A.B.)

Everything to see here, folks

Green tangerines, dark magic, girls in pink, loyalty, betrayal, and love. A true detective noir!​  (R.C.)

A fascinating story of mystery, magic and love

The author wraps an intriguing story with interesting and unpredictable characters, vivid descriptions and unexpected plot twist.
This is a book I'll keep to enjoy again and again.   (J.L.)

Great Read

If you like Philip Marlowe you'll love this author. Fast pace, filled with intrigue and twists to keep you turning the pages.    (E.)

Wow!

'Girls in Pink' was a doozie!   (L.K.)

Atmospheric and engrossing

If a humbler Stephen King and a kinder Hemingway spent a year in Canadian cottage country, this is the book they would write.  (E.O.)

Taut, tight superlative story-telling.

One of those books you really don't want to end. Curious character portraits, where the interiors are far more intricately wrought than the exteriors, with the landscape itself a potent, memorable figure.  (K)

Grab a cup of comforting tea when you sit down 

... with Caves in the Rain. I was hooked with the first page and the twists and turns continue to the end. I could picture the island though I have never been there. Redemption for a tragedy, final justice, and the dog - well just read it. (Y.M.)

Bickford's writing is a special form of magic

This was my first Bob Bickford book and I'm sold. There are so many layers in this story, and in his writing, it's hard to write a review to give it justice. A story that pulls at your heart in every way, good and bad. A tragedy mixed with ghosts from the past who still remain in the present and can't let go. The characters are beautiful in their individual ways. A little bit of everything, which is a rare treat.  (P.K.)

A Mind-bending Thriller

 Mike Latta is hiding from the pain of his past. With the intent of exiling himself from the world, he sets out to live on an isolated, Canadian, island for a year. Bizarre encounters lead to dangerous secrets, mysteries, and brushes with death—leaving the reader glued to the page and hungry for answers. I recommend carving out some time and reading Caves in the Rain immediately. (KK)

Five stars

Great author, great book! (J)

Spooky, Eerie, Terrifying!

If you like like a book that keeps you up all night, has characters you can't wait to see again, and scares the heck out of you at times, this book is for you! I am eagerly awaiting a return to the lake. (C.B.)

Great Book

It's always fun finding a new to you author but it's even better when that author turns out to be really good. Do yourself a favor and read this book and then read more of the same writer. Great atmosphere characters and story. (W)

LOVE Caves in the Rain

...Bickford's ability to pack a sentence with brevity, power, subtlety, emotion, and clarity is wonderful... (R.R.)

Beautiful contrasts

Bob Bickford's characters have bones and flesh and souls. Bickford's writing style is beautifully descriptive, with delicious contrasts of dark and light. He paints his personalities with rosy grays and dark indigo blues. This book kept me interested from the first page until the last! (W.R.)

Another Bickford Masterpiece

I was privileged to get an advanced copy of this book. I'd already read Girls in Pink and Deadly Kiss, and expected more of Bickford's gorgeous writing. I wasn't disappointed. This is a prequel to Deadly Kiss. I won't spoil it by telling you too much, but I was happy to see Mike Latta and the other denizens of Hollow Lake involved in another intrigue with a few spirits mixed in. I hope Bickford makes this a series. Hankie rating: 2     (A.B.)

 

Fascinating Journey Into the World Between Worlds

Michael has had a profound loss and Echo Island is the lifeline he has been given to put his life back together. Though not many year round residents, those he does meet are warm and friendly and before long Michael feels a sense of family and community and perhaps more-- but even as a second chance for happiness seems a possibility, restless spirits reach out to Michael for closure (something he has denied himself). How can Michael hope to set free these ghosts of Echo Island's past, when he has yet to forgive and free himself?   (R.C.)

Enjoyable fiction / suspense  

I don't often write book reviews, ...but vacation on the lake where the story takes place and was curious...decided to take a chance... I'm glad I did. It was good enough that I stayed up late to finish it - something this middle aged body seldom does. The book is difficult to categorize: it's part general fiction, part romance, part mystery/suspense with a little paranormal thrown in. I find myself rooting for the main characters and plan to buy again from this author. (A.)

 

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© 2016 by Bob Bickford