Malicious Deception

I released Malicious Deception, an Essie Openwaters Mystery Thriller novel, in April. I had a promotion run on April 21st on Freebooksy and twenty-two hundred copies were downloaded from Amazon on the 21st and 22nd. The biggest issue is getting sufficient written reviews on Amazon and Goodreads so I republished the book last week with a request at the end for reviews and had Amazon push messages to anyone who had an ebook copy to download the update. The written reviews received to date have exceeded my expectations but more are needed.Meanwhile, I am busy incorporating developmental editor comments into Stratagem, the sequel to Malicious Deception. Some sample reviews of Malicious Deception on Amazon are pasted below.

Kristi K5.0 out of 5 stars 50 years of deception and greed net the reader a twisted path of reading enjoyment. Reviewed in the United States on May 3, 2022Verified Purchase First, I am familiar with this work in an earlier version. This iteration is tighter, more exciting and polished with deeper revelation of character through the developing story and…it is more fun to read.
W. M. Hewitt’s Malicious Deception, seamlessly weaves dangerous cold war era fears and nuclear hazards frosted with avarice with a brilliant young scientist’s personal and professional struggles as she attempts to distill and, finally, crack an orchestrated 50 years of structured manipulation of the facts and the system. The author’s background in the nuclear industry, professional work experience with the DOE and, his firsthand knowledge and experience with the bureaucracy above, coupled with his knowledge of: the Tri-City area of Washington state AND his extended living in and near Washington, DC provide him with accurate, intelligent and interesting details which help a nonscientist to easily navigate what could be, at times, technically complex “stuff”. Instead, his background provides him with more variations to the mix of colors in our palette of an even broader reading experience. The main character reveals ever increasing capacities that are revealed through exciting yet believable incidents. As the story advances, the overall pace quickens and the stakes increase as the enemy continues to blunt her attempts to use the legal system and the bureaucratic structure to “stop the madness”. Besides Dr. Essie Openwaters’ mental/scientific acumen and spiritual toughness, her opponents also discover that she possesses a large arsenal of physical skills and survival knowledge that continue to flummox them and, yes, there is blood that is spilled in the Idaho wilderness. The book is an increasingly complex thriller that is crafted to take you just to the brink of a seeming resolution until the author reveals yet another facet of the WHOLE story. It is, by way of simile, like the Long Beach Gran Prix where things advance at quick yet differing speeds, corners are turned sometimes extremely fast and sometimes very gradually yet, at all times, the “characters” are all headed toward the same finish line of the same race, however, all the drivers possess different skill sets, experiences and equipment. Hewitt puts us “in” the race…to the finish. Since he has crafted a wonderful array of supporting characters he has assured himself a deep bench for the further adventures of (spoiler alert!!!) AGENT Essie Openwaters. Yes, there is a “hook” to the final resolution which is well plotted and delivered with the author’s assurance that she will return ….a fun and quick read.

Tim Kupla.

Volkmar Weissig5.0 out of 5 stars Breath-taking technothriller Reviewed in the United States on May 2, 2022Verified Purchase The chance discovery of a 50-year-old memo hidden inside an old government surplus oak desk dramatically changed the life trajectory of Dr. Essie Openwater from wanting to become an established well-respected scientist to somebody she was never even dreaming of before. Reading this old memo put the chills down her spine realizing that the entire Pacific Northwest was on the brink of a devastating nuclear disaster. Unable to let go, obsessed by trying to avoid this catastrophic event, she put herself into the crosshair of a psychopathic murderer possessing seemingly unsurmountable powers bestowed upon him by the federal government. With every chapter the author succeeds in building up the level of suspense, with the true meaning of the books title, “Malicious Deception” only unraveling at the almost very end of this fast-paced and pulse-pounding technothriller. It feels like a big relieve to finally learn what the malicious deception was actually all about, and it was not what one would have expected when following the protagonist’s breathtaking journey through a mind-boggling web of secrecy, deceit and murder. The entire story is brilliantly written and the use of unique humorous figures of speech boost the pleasure of reading it. With Essie Openwater the author, W. Michael Hewitt has created a fascinating protagonist whose future adventures should be eagerly looked forward to.
Volkmar Weissig

Heather M. Genevieve5.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced, smart, and way too plausible for comfort Reviewed in the United States on May 3, 2022 Not my normal genre, but I was intrigued by the premise. The idea of a multi-level cover-up once seemed crazy to me, but these days…not so much. Put the right people in the right positions, “manage” those who might squeal… it’s not as far-fetched as I once imagined. The author’s familiarity with the field lends further credibility, and one is left wondering if this work of fiction may one day prove prescient.

Stay tuned and, as always, stay safe.

Malicious Deception

MALICIOUS DECEPTION, a techno thriller novel featuring Dr. Essie Openwaters, is now available on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Malicious-Deception-stop-billionaire-psychopath-ebook/dp/B09XLW9ML6/ref=sr_1_3?crid=93FYENKK6QYG&keywords=w+michael+hewitt&qid=1649701658&sprefix=%2Caps%2C87&sr=8-3). Dr. Essie Openwaters, a twenty-one-year-old Native American, starts her new dream job as a research scientist at Washington National Research Laboratory only to find the inner demons planted during her childhood prevent her from being a team player, a requirement to remain at the laboratory. When she finds a fifty-year-old memo in a surplus Atomic Energy Commission desk, life turns into a nightmare as she struggles to prevent a nuclear time bomb from devastating the Pacific Northwest while dodging assassins dispatched by Ty Rettig, a psychopathic billionaire who must stop Essie from uncovering the secrets the memo could lead to.

Malicious Deception is a major rewrite of a previous novel, Nuclear Time Bomb.

MALICIOUS DECEPTION NOW AVAILABLE

MALICIOUS DECEPTION, a techno thriller novel featuring Dr. Essie Openwaters, is now available on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Malicious-Deception-stop-billionaire-psychopath-ebook/dp/B09XLW9ML6/ref=sr_1_3?crid=93FYENKK6QYG&keywords=w+michael+hewitt&qid=1649701658&sprefix=%2Caps%2C87&sr=8-3). Dr. Essie Openwaters, a twenty-one-year-old Native American, starts her new dream job as a research scientist at Washington National Research Laboratory only to find the inner demons planted during her childhood prevent her from being a team player, a requirement to remain at the laboratory. When she finds a fifty-year-old memo in a surplus Atomic Energy Commission desk, life turns into a nightmare as she struggles to prevent a nuclear time bomb from devastating the Pacific Northwest while dodging assassins dispatched by Ty Rettig, a psychopathic billionaire who must stop Essie from uncovering the secrets the memo could lead to.

Malicious Deception is a major rewrite of a previous novel, Nuclear Time Bomb.

Malicious Deception

MALICIOUS DECEPTION is essentially complete. It goes to the copy editor on February 25th, to the proofreader the first week of April, and to Amazon for publishing on June 1st. It is a total remake of NUCLEAR TIME BOMB that moves faster, is more engaging, has less technogobble, and enhances Dr. Essie Openwaters’ challenges and personality.

Twenty-one-year-old Essie Openwaters armed with two PhDs from Stanford (chemical engineering and earth sciences) starts her dream job as a research scientist at a national laboratory only to find her childhood demons keep her from being a team player and threaten her job. When she finds a fifty-year-old memo carefully hidden in a surplus US Atomic Energy Commission desk she was refinishing, her attempt to validate it lead her into dark world of Ty Rettig, a psychopathic billionaire with secrets to protect.

Back At It

I took some time off to contemplate comments received from my editor on STRATAGEM. Interestingly enough, they inspired me to rewrite NUCLEAR TIME BOMB and republish it as MALICIOUS DECEPTION. I built a fish pond in the backyard which gave me lots of time to contemplate (and hand place six tons of rocks). Now I’m starting back on MALICIOUS DECEPTION which I plan to have ready for beta reads around Christmas.

Rethinking

NUCLEAR TIME BOMB, published on Amazon June 2021, is my first novel and I worked on it several years as I worked on technique, paid for numerous editors, and read multiple books about writing fiction. Despite thousands of dollars on editors, readers have found mistakes. Consequently, I am going back through it, literally word by word out loud, checking for missing words, unnecessary punctuation, opportunities to improve showing rather than telling, and tightening up the story. BTW, the readers liked the story and reviews were good.

As I went through it, I was struck by several reviewer comments along the line of “this isn’t typically the type of book I read but I enjoyed the story, the twists and turns, and it kept me turning pages.”

I asked myself it wasn’t the type of book they would normally read and concluded two things. First, nuclear isn’t such a hot topic these days. Second, the cover is too busy.

So, I am contemplating changing the title to something more mainstream and changing the cover to something that captures the essence of the story. After playing with a number of possible titles and covers I am testing this. MALICIOUS DECEPTION.

Let me know what you think. Stay tuned and, as always, stay safe.

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Like to Read a Good Thriller?

Twenty-one-year-old Dr. ESSIE OPENWATERS is brilliant, beautiful and a loner. Raised by her Kootenai Indian father in an abandoned wooden shack, Essie grew up friendless, motherless, and poor. She was stronger, faster, and more intelligent than her classmates. A year after her father was killed, she received an early scholarship to college. Five years later she earned her second PhD at Stanford University and began her dream job as a research scientist in a national laboratory. While struggling to adapt to meet the laboratory’s teamwork expectations, Essie’s life flips upside down when her discovery pits her against a psychopathic billionaire who perceives Essie’s death as the only way to protect deep secrets that could destroy him.

Read NUCLEAR TIME BOMB

https://www.amazon.com/Nuclear-Time-Bomb-Openwaters-Techno-Thriller-ebook/dp/B097Z4LLGY/ref=sr_1_1?crid=X7L5SQR7GJQG&dchild=1&keywords=w+michael+hewitt&qid=1626270751&sprefix=w+michael+h%2Caps%2C197&sr=8-1

STRATAGEM

I’ve been busy updating STRATAGEM in between packing boxes and signing papers (we move next week. It’s incredible how much stuff two people can accumulate). The story is written and it flows well. I’ve been trying to cut below 90,000 words. It was at 118,000 and is currently at 92,500. I’ve also been tuning the key turning points. It heads for the developmental editor in less than 3 weeks and I want to get as much bang for the buck as I can for a three grand edit.

NUCLEAR TIME BOMB

I published NUCLEAR TIME BOMB on Amazon on June 25, 2021. It is available in Kindle and paperback form.

Nuclear Time Bomb is a 96,000-word thriller that pits 21-year-old Dr. Essie Openwaters, a recent Stanford graduate with dual PhDs, against Ty Rettig, a billionaire psychopathic killer whose secrets Essie is inadvertently uncovering.

Raised by her Kootenai Indian father to distrust others in a town bigoted against her, Essie struggles to succeed at her new research scientist job where teamwork is prerequisite. She discovers a 50-year-old memo written on Atomic Energy Commission stationary hidden in a surplus AEC desk. Her inquiries into the memo are reported to Ty Rettig, Undersecretary of Homeland Security, who thought he destroyed the only copy of the memo decades before.

Convinced of the memo’s veracity, Essie ignores a series of threats and soon finds herself the target of multiple assassination attempts. Her life changes when her boss introduces her to an old classmate, currently serving as the National Security Advisor, which leads to Essie supporting the Secretary of Energy in a secret campaign to stop the bomb from devastating part of the Pacific Northwest.

Essie battles government bureaucracy, corrupt government officials, and Rettig’s agents in a race against time.

Nuclear Time Bomb is a story of love, hate, survival, and Essie discovering who she is. Nuclear Time Bomb is the first in a series of Essie Openwaters techno-thriller novels. The second in the series, Stratagem, is under beta review and will be published in 2022.

Check me out on FaceBook as well. As always, stay tuned and stay safe.

https://www.facebook.com/essieopenwaters

and

https://www.facebook.com/wmichaelhewitt

.

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NUCLEAR TIME BOMB

I’ve gone through the editor’s comments and updated NUCLEAR TIME BOMB. Kathy is giving it a final read through before I format it for publication on Amazon in electronic and paperback formats.

Better wear a seat belt because there are a lot of twists and turns in this thriller novel. NUCLEAR TIME BOMB remains on target for publication in early February.