Today marks the first of what I hope will be many features of new crime fiction from Oak Tree Press. This small publishing house was formerly based in Taylorville, Illinois-- a small town just a few miles from where I was born and raised. I've since become acquainted with some of Oak Tree Press's very busy people behind the scenes as well as a few of their authors, and I'm looking forward to shining a spotlight on their books.
Join me today in welcoming author John M. Wills as he tells us about his latest book, The Year Without Christmas!
Eventually, Officer Doyle finds himself on the streets of Chicago during a brutal winter without a cent to his name. His family is unaware of his whereabouts. They can only hope that he is simply missing, not dead. As they try to maintain some sense of normalcy during Eric’s absence a series of events threaten to cause their world to collapse around them.
An element of mystery also surrounds this story, one that involves a Catholic priest. Although this man of the cloth is persistent in his pursuit of Eric, the former cop sinks deeper into depression and pushes the priest further away. The problem is that no one else has ever seen or heard of Father Callahan.
Will the officer recover and return home? And what’s to become of him on the mean streets of Chicago? The tale covers such contemporary issues as PTSD, alcoholism, childhood illness and homelessness. It’s a story that will have you reaching for tissues at several points throughout the journey.
With thirty-three years in law enforcement as a Chicago police officer and FBI agent, John M. Wills writes with the gritty realism of someone who has worked the streets and dealt with criminals all over the world.
Although the book has a happy ending, after all, it is a Christmas novel, the story itself pulls no punches as it strikes at the very heart of what it’s like trying to survive on the street. The unsavory characters, crime, the daily search for food and sanitation needs, are all part of this true-to-life tale of a man losing his desire to live.
What role will Father Callahan play in this drama? Pick up a copy of The Year Without Christmas to find out!
|John M. Wills|
John M. Wills is a former Chicago police officer and retired FBI agent. He is a freelance writer and award-winning author in a variety of genres, including novels, short stories and poetry. He has published eight books and written more than 150 articles relating to officer training, street survival, fitness and ethics.
John also writes book reviews for the New York Journal of Books and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. His book, Women Warriors, is available online and at the National Law Enforcement Memorial Gift Shop in Washington, D.C. John’s October 2013 release is The Year Without Christmas: A Novel. Visit John at: www.johnmwills.com.