Diana here: Today one award-winning author interviews another! Join me in welcoming Lena Diaz as she interviews Gil Malloy, whose newest book, Blonde Ice, is heating up bookshelves everywhere. 😉
Don’t forget to leave a comment on the KissAndThrill.com website to be entered for a free copy of Blonde Ice!
Take it away Lena Diaz!
Meet Crime Fiction Novelist R.G. Belsky
and the newest installment in the Gil Malloy series…
Son of Sam. Ted Bundy. The Boston Strangler. All of these infamous serial killers who made front page news shared a common trait—they were men who killed women for a sexual thrill.
But now Gil Malloy—ace reporter for the New York Daily News—is on the trail of a different kind of serial killer who breaks all of the rules. Dubbed “Blonde Ice” by the media, she’s a sexy blonde who picks up seemingly random men at bars and clubs, has sex with them, and then brutally murders them afterwards.
Malloy—who is already in the middle of a major political story about the election of the next New York City mayor—finds himself drawn to the case by secrets from his past. As he digs deeper, he begins to suspect that there could be some kind of link between the mayoral race and the emergence of the Blonde Ice killings.
As the body count and the political stakes continue to rise, Malloy soon realizes he’s covering what could be the biggest story of his career. All he has to do is live through it.
Does that sound like an awesome story or what? This is the third novel in the Gil Malloy series. Now meet the fabulous author, R.G. Belsky.
R.G. Belsky is an author of crime fiction and a New York City journalist. His new mystery BLONDE ICE – the latest in a series featuring newspaper reporter Gil Malloy – was published by Atria on October 18. Previous books include SHOOTING FOR THE STARS and THE KENNEDY CONNECTION. Belsky is a former managing editor of the New York Daily News; metropolitan editor of the New York Post; news editor of Star magazine; and managing editor at NBCNews.com. He recently won the Claymore award and finished as a Silver Falchion Finalist at Killer Nashville.
Lena – Welcome to Kiss and Thrill! You have a long, prestigious history as a journalist and are still an active journalist. But you also write crime novels. Did you always want to write novels? What finally made you take that leap?
R.G. – I’ve actually been writing crime novels for a long time. I started back as a young journalist when I first read Raymond Chandler, Agatha Christie and a few others – and got inspired to try my own. Most of my crime novels have been written while I was also working as a fulltime journalist at the NY Post, NY Daily News, Star magazine and NBC News. I always thought that gave me a big advantage in my fiction career because:
- Being a news person gives you great ideas for crime novels. I’ve covered most of the big crime stories over the years – Son of Sam, O.J., Jon Benet, etc – and also been involved in some of the most sensational tabloid stories like “Headless Body in Topless Bar” – the famous NY Post headline. So when people ask me where I get the ideas for my crime novels, I always say: “I just go to work in the newsroom every day:”
- There’s no place better than a New York City newsroom to find colorful characters. None of the characters in my crime novels are real, but they certainly have been inspired by many of the real life characters in my journalistic life. Much of the dialogue in my books too comes straight out of newsroom banter. I don’t think I ever could have created someone like Gil Malloy if I hadn’t been around a lot of Gil Malloys as a real life journalist.
- A journalist has to deal all the time with the facts. He or she is consumed by them – everything in a news story has to be accurate. But in fiction, I get to make stuff up! I generally start with some real life facts as in The Kennedy Connection – pegged to the JFK assassination. But then I create fictional items like a secret son of Lee Harvey Oswald to propel the plot forward. Now that kind of freedom is really fun to do for a longtime journalist like me!
Lena – When you and I last spoke, your first novel in the Gil Malloy series, The Kennedy Connection, was coming out. Since then, you’ve published the second in this series—Shooting Stars. And the third, Blonde Ice, just came out (Happy book release!) This series has received amazing critical acclaim. To what do you attribute your success? What makes your books so different? What makes Gil Malloy so compelling?
R.G. – I follow a pretty basic rule when writing my fiction. I try to make the books – especially the characters – things I would want to read about. That’s especially true with Gil Malloy. He’s flawed, immature at times, and has a lot of other issues = but he’s basically a good guy with integrity who’s also very interesting. I guess I patterned him to a degree after some of the TV characters I’ve loved over the years like Jim Rockford and Columbo. I also try to make sure the story has as many twists and surprises as possible – but the character is still the most important thing to me. One of my favorite reader reviews on Goodreads consisted of just three words: “Gil Malloy rocks!” That’s the reaction I’m going for.
Here’s what critics and fellow authors are saying about his novels…
- “Bombshell Twists” ~ Publishers Weekly
- “Sensational! R.G. Belsky dazzles with his new mystery novel…Gil Malloy shines!” ~ Killer Nashville, Book of the Day
- “Sinewy, compelling and addictive” ~ The Huffington Post
- “Excellent thriller…establishes Malloy as a formidable hard-boiled hero.” ~ Booklist
- “Malloy is a terrific character” ~ Sandra Brown
- “completely entertaining” ~ Hank Phillippi Ryan
Lena – What’s next? More Gil Malloy books or a new series? Something else?
R.G. – I recently won the Claymore award at Killer Nashville for “Forget Me Not,” the next book I’ve been working on. It’s about the long ago disappearance of a child in New York City and a woman TV reporter who becomes obsessed with finding out answers about the case. I think it’s different than the Gil Malloy books – but still captures that same New York City media world that I know so well. Of course, I also hope to do more Gil Malloy books in the future too. I like writing Gil!
As Dick Belsky…
- ONE FOR THE MONEY – Academy Chicago (1985)
- SOUTH STREET CONFIDENTIAL – St. Martin’s (1989)
- BROADCAST CLUES (Paperback version from Berkley Prime Crime of South Street Confidential) – 1993
- LIVE FROM NEW YORK – Berkley Prime Crime (1993)
- THE MOURNING SHOW –Berkley Prime Crime (1994)
- SUMMERTIME NEWS – Berkley Prime Crime (1995)
As R.G. Belsky….
- LOVERBOY – Avon 1998
- PLAYING DEAD – Avon 1999
- THE KENNEDY CONNECTION – Atria (2014)
- THE MIDNIGHT HOUR – Novella – Atria (2015)
- SHOOTING FOR THE STARS – Atria (2015)
- BLONDE ICE – Atria (2016)
R.G. is giving away a PRINT COPY OF BLONDE ICE to a random commenter (Giveaway limited to U.S. mailing addresses.)
Just answer the below question to be entered into the drawing…
Who’s the scariest serial killer you’ve ever read or seen on screen?