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"For someone not named Patterson, Harris or Lindsay, Sue Coletta has reinvented the serial killer genre without stepping over the tropes for which we flock to it. In "Wings of Mayhem," she gives us a "Silence of the Lambs" style yarn that takes us into not one, but two criminal minds: one a twisted psychopathic genius hell-bent on sending sickly cryptic messages through the flesh of his victims (the plot recalls the latest season of "The Following" starring Kevin Bacon, which gave new meaning to "twisted" while being something you could not look away from), the other being our protagonist, who moonlights from her day job (I won't rat that out here) as a cat-burglar who stumbles into the wrong crib, stealing the aforementioned serial killer's fetishized "precious." There is hell to pay for them both as a result.
The story spins ahead with escalating velocity and well-rendered literary layers, always leaving the reader pleading for more information while delivering just enough with exquisite timing, always nailing a clear and rationale dissection of what seemed in the moment like insanity or illogic. The craft of the writer is on display from page one, with intense pacing, deeply drawn characters and a matrix of plot elements that never lets you see the big picture as completely as you think you do, thus setting up an ending that demands you stick with it until the final, unexpected twist.
You think you get it, but you don't. And when you do, you're delighted that you didn't.
Sue Coletta is on a path. She earned her ticket into the crowded arena of dark thriller contenders with her previous novel ("Marred"), and in "Wings of Mayhem" she announces her arrival with the wail of approaching sirens and the quiet horror of a blade swinging at your throat in the dark. Don't miss this one. A star is born." ~ Critically Acclaimed author, Larry Brooks
From the Author
I write what I love to read, what fascinates me and the things I fear the most. As a reader, I love to be kept in suspense while at the same time matching wits against the main character. Fast-paced, lots of action, endearing characters, and a vicarious experience I can't find anywhere else.
As such, I offer the same thrill-ride to you. I spend countless hours of research before I write one word. Read the acknowledgements in my books and you'll see it takes a village to create a world worth spending time in. Chatting with experts and living the scenes myself in order to feel my characters' terror, sadness, pain, is one of my favorite parts of the process. Forensics, criminal investigations, witnessing what happens to the body after death, and delving into the mind of serial killers is what intrigues me most.
My focus, however, is always on you. I hope you'll enjoy reading my stories as much as I've enjoyed writing them. Because if it weren't for you, dear reader, I wouldn't get to live my dream. Thank you for your interest in my work.
All books in Mayhems Series can stand alone, but if you prefer to read in order, they're numbered this way, with the crossover novellas at the half mark:
I have to admit, I was concerned when the protagonist discovered the identity of the serial killer in the first scene. I mean, come on, the whole point of a mystery/thriller is the whodunit aspect, right?
Don't worry about being bored because you know who the killer is. That's the least of the issues facing the heroine in Sue Coletta's WINGS OF MAYHEM. This is a nonstop whirlwind of edge-of-your-seat action that will leave you breathless from page one to the very last word. I'm already waiting for the sequel.
The heroine, Shawnee, is a breath of fresh air for the reader. Not your traditional damsel in distress or even your tough-as-nails female cop. No, Shawnee has a few special traits all her own, and when juxtaposed with her so-sweet-your-teeth-hurt best friend, it's a pairing that's endearing. When she starts dating the uber-hot detective? It's a match you can't tear your eyes away from.
Throw these characters in with a sadistic serial killer whose motives are impossible for even a Fed to unravel and so much action and apprehension that your heartbeat sets a new speed record... well, what more can I say? As Shawnee's best friend would tell you, it's a frickety-fracken good book. Woot!
Seriously, the pacing is fast and the plot is solid. The characters are ones you'll love and want to revisit. This is a book I highly recommend.
If you have to eat, sleep, work, drive a car or meet a pressing deadline, then don't read Sue Coletta's "Wings of Mayhem" because once you open the book you won't want to put it down. The serial killer in this book collects certain items and goes about leaving his signature wherever a body is found. The story takes the first of many twists when a tough-talking female cat burglar enters the home of a wealthy man and corporate scoundrel, not realizing he's a serial killer. The hunter becomes the hunted, and there are plenty of twists and turns between that point and the end, including some that avid crime fiction readers might not see coming. The secondary characters in this book are also well developed, making the book an enjoyable and exciting read. David Liscio --- author of Deadly Fare.
Absolutely a terrorising thriller, some horror, some sex,burglary, and feline friends. Great characters you will love. Non-stop thrills and what a book. I wish I could give it more then five stars. I will be waiting for the next one to come. I hope it will be quick. I'm so excited about this new series. If you love everything in a thriller then this is what you have been waiting for and it does not disappoint.
Wings of Mayhem (SPOILER ALERT): I told you before that Sue Phillips Coletta is a writer to watch, and Wings of Mayhem (Book One of the Mayhem Series,Crossroad Press, June 2016,), Sue Phillips Coletta’s second published novel, proves my point.
Coletta’s writing has matured, especially when she writes from the first-person female protagonist’s POV. Coletta’s language is as uniquely beautiful, as full and rich and supremely confident, as her characters, primarily when she writes about what she knows best: women and crime. Her prose seems to lack that same confidence, however, when she describes men, especially gay men. Maybe that’s only because she’s not as comfortable writing third-person narration as she is writing first person.
Shawnee Daniels, Shawn to her friend Nadine, is a cat-burglar. Shawnee’s day job is the chief cyber-crime consultant for the local police department. At night, Shawnee still burgles. But now she burgles only rich bastards who steal from the poor to teach them a lesson. Shawnee, like a female Robin Hood, steals back from those bastards and donates the proceeds, less her small commission, to the helpless victims of white collar crimes. It’s become Shawnee’s mission in life and her way of making up for her past misdeeds.
When Shawnee sneaks into Jack Delsin’s up-scale house in Bear-Clave Estates to steal $30,000 in cash and jewelry, she discovers Delsin is more than a simple retirement fund embezzler. Delsin is actually the brutal serial killer known as “The Creator” who butchers women and stretches their rib cages to look like angels’ wings. Because Shawnee finds this evidence, plus an antique wooden puzzle box, during a breaking and entering (B & E) escapade, she doesn’t dare tell police. Instead, she confides in BFF Nadine.
If anyone deserves to die, it’s Nadine. People that stupid and self-centered don’t deserve to live. Nadine may mean well, but she’s a disaster waiting to happen. Unfortunately, Nadine and Shawnee have been best-female friends since childhood. Shawnee’s long-term emotional commitment to Nadine turns Nadine into a target. Delsin strikes at Shawnee through Nadine. He slits Nadine’s throat, but Shawnees finds her in time and Nadine survives.
For one street-savvy chick, Shawnee lets her emotions too often get in the way of her better judgment. Instead of striking back hard at Delsin after Delsin kills one of Shawnee’s beloved cats, Shawnee acts like a nervous wreck. She’s conflicted about her relationship with homicide cop Levaughn Samuels. If Shawnee’s honest with Levaughn, he’ll have to arrest her for burglary. If she remains silent, Levaughn could become Delsin’s next victim. What’s a girl to do? Shawnee makes a whole bunch of bad decisions that place her and her closest friends in harm’s way.
There are times while reading you’ll wonder if Shawnee is also too stupid to live. That’s what Coletta wants you to think. She wants readers to feel the fear as Shawnee’s life becomes even more complicated with every twist and turn. She turns up the heat and readers sweat right along with the characters in this fast-paced novel.
There are still a few loose ends that Coletta leaves hanging at the end of the novel, but I expect she’ll answer all our questions in future books of The Mayhem Series. I look forward to learning more about Shawnee Daniels and her family and friends in Book Two.
Say... CRIME? The name is COLETTA, SUE. A well developed story, credible characters, tri-dimensional. Cat burglar, Shawnee Daniels, reality check in the story. Steal memories could be DEADLY!!!
Run, if you want to follow the story not a moment to loose. Not a fan of spoilers, need to read a real deal Mayhem... Crime is the trade of Lady Coletta's. A writer to follow, if you like good books!!!
Great premise for a book: a cat burglar by night, a cybercrimes specialist by day. Kind of like Dexter meets The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Fast-paced with lots of twists and turns. Sometimes light (the scenes with Shawnee and her best friend), sometimes dark (the scenes with the serial killer), Wings of Mayhem will keep you turning the pages until the end.