“Vicky Johnson’s killer rolled onto his right side, drew his knees up under the warm covers and cautiously peeked through the darkness at the crisp digits of the clock-radio counting his last moments on earth, death waiting patiently for him to shower and dress. The secret he thought, is not to open your eyes and let the world in.
“So begins the story of Dutch Cleland, a man with a hidden past and a future about to explode in his face. A seemingly average man whose love for two women drives him to such extremes that deception, even murder and suicide are no longer unthinkable.”
This collection of island stories carries the reader from daring adventures beneath the Caribbean Sea to tense conflict on a deserted island near the Canadian border. Love stories and private eyes, a boy living on a lonely salt cay and a girl’s dream of freedom at sea, hurricanes and heroes – all told with humor and the insight that comes from firsthand experience.
In Poison Makers, as in Things In Ditches, Jimmy Olsen once again turns the traditional mystery on its head and shakes out stories of diplomats run amuck, deadly Cuban lovers, Caribbean voodoo and New York City car chases. Not a drug dealer, terrorist or serial killer in sight, but a protagonist, Edgar Espinosa-Jones (EJ), a reader can root for. A story that can be dark, but with uncontrived thrills that provoke both laughter and apprehension. Characters appear from the depth of Haitian Vodoun and Catholic Santo Domingo, and are little different from those who live next door to us, even if some are zombies. EJ accepts an assignment from his enigmatic mentor Garrett Yancy to investigate the seemly innocent death of U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic, Adam Quist. His first job is to interview one of the Ambassador s daughters at a secret rendezvous in Port-au-Prince, Haiti where he is drawn to her by an uncanny intensity as they travel dark streets toward a forbidden voodoo ceremony. Soon after, EJ is in terror for his life, running and hiding until he can find nowhere safe and is forced to make his last stand. Live or die. Poison Makers is anything but the usual mystery. Set in the turbulent 1970s, the Caribbean seethes with political intrigue, revolutionaries, superstition, violence and EJ s own tangled love affairs. With the help of his best friend, a crooked Dominican cop, EJ s split nationality (Dominican/American) and quirky view of life combine to solve the mysteries at whatever cost.
About the Author:
Jimmy Olsen didn’t start writing fiction until he was well past 40. In the tradition of American writers like Jack London and Louis L’Amour, Olsen spent much of his life seeking adventure. He began scuba diving in 1961 at age 13 and continues today. A machine-gunner in Vietnam, after two tours he settled down awhile, married, started a family and graduated college with a BS in English. Still at college, he published his first national story in a diving magazine. A year later he moved his family to Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic where he taught at a private American school and started the Republic’s first professional diving school, Scuba Dominican, C por A. Hearing rumors of shipwrecks and gold, Olsen and a small group of adventurers discovered the site of the French Man-O-War Imperial and several other vessels. After five years in the Caribbean, Olsen completed his MA at the University of Alabama and returned to writing, taking a job with a daily newspaper in Athens, Alabama for a year before becoming an editor back home in Minnesota. This lasted four years before the thirst for adventure overtook him again and he was back in the diving business, traveling to dive destinations from the Caribbean to the South Pacific. The snorkeling scene in Thing In Ditches comes directly from the author’s own rich experiences. Jimmy Olsen has written two additional novels, Scuba, due to be released next year and YR-71, a Vietnam seafaring adventure set near Da Nang. In addition, he’s completed 20 short stories, some set in his native Minnesota and others from around the globe. Several of these have recently been sold and will soon be in print. Olsen continues to travel extensively, returning to the Dominican Republic to dive his old haunts only hours before Hurricane Georges. Equally at home at the keyboard of a computer or his ancient Royal, Olsen spends his writing days in a north woods setting without even the basic comforts such as running water or electricity and at his modern office in the city. He has three children, now grown, and lives with his wife in Minnesota.