New For 2014: From the Horse’s Mouth Collection


The Collection

2014 sees the publication of Carla’s subversive, daring From the Horse’s Mouth Collection. Number 1 in the series, the self-titled From the Horse’s Mouth is the first of several short stories, set for release between September 2014 and New Year 2015. Each story boasts interconnecting themes and secrets. Those that do not deserve power have it, there is widespread corruption and deceit and the least expected outcomes happen, often at the hands of the least expected people. As with every short story in Carla’s new collection, a crime is committed – but these are no ordinary whodunits. There is no clear-cut answer. It’s up to the reader to solve the mystery of who they think the real perpetrator is….

From the Horse’s Mouth #1 Taster Blurb

View book on Amazon

View book on Amazon

Imagine another person controlling everything you do. Imagine wasting away in a job you hate with no chance of promotion. Imagine feeling like no one in the world respects you. Now imagine you could change all that in an instant, but it meant risk. Would you have the guts to do it?

Gottfried Baumauer, Ridley Obelmäker and Dimitri Pissec are three men in exactly that position – stuck in a dead-end job they secretly loathe, but need. When sexy new recruit, Caitlyn Brichacek, arrives their working world is tipped slowly upside-down. Bravery, lies and decency are the first threads that begin to unravel. After that, it’s anyone’s game.

“Witty, wild and relentlessly noir.”
“Elegant but brutal.”
“Almost every character is sickeningly hateful, cowardly and ultra-manipulative.”

 Sleeping With the Sun (From the Horse’s Mouth #2)

View at Amazon

View at Amazon

Set against a backdrop of 1930’s rural Suffolk during the depression era, Sleeping with the Sun is a powerfully compelling snapshot of a young girl’s life. Separated from the rest of the community by her isolated, domineering father, Katie begins to feel more and more alone. Her only friend appears to be her gentle mother, Bea – a woman who’s also under husband Nader’s selfish control.

A change occurs within the family that no one predicts. The illusion of who is mad and who is sane and what lies between threatens to shape Katie’s new reality, until she realises that the concept of reality only works when everyone sees the world exactly the same. In a dark cloud of grief, urged on by an inner strength she has yet to fully understand, the young girl takes her mother’s pencils and draws a boy. When there’s no one else to talk to, she talks to him – and it’s then that Katie’s secret is born.

Author Carla H. Krueger hits another high note with this beautifully dark tale, inviting the reader to put themselves in unexpected shoes and to question more deeply the difference between wrong and right – a difference that might be far more subtle than many of us are willing to believe. Strong themes of emotional control, the power of lies, manipulation and surprising role reversals work together to give us an uneasy atmosphere, a sinister pseudo-reality that’s becoming a mainstay of this author’s fiction. Through each character, the author explores her own struggle to unmask the artist within, to fight external controls, and to embrace, as an adult, those precious roots of discovery, rebellion and risk.

 The Social Worker (From the Horse’s Mouth #3)

Find at Amazon

See book at Amazon

His words made everything else mean nothing…. “She’s in there. My little girl.”

A house fire rages behind closed doors. A man lies beaten and semi-conscious in the subdued council estate street. Desperate for help, he calls out. His prayer is answered. New area social worker, Geoff Tallow, appears.

Vulnerable, homeless and at the mercy of a corrupt state system, down and out ex-addict, Fog, is tantalisingly close to ending an intense personal battle to get clean. He’s almost beaten the inner demons that have haunted and intoxicated him for decades when Geoff Tallow arrives, offering to support and protect his new client.

Jackie, a woman who’s as hard as the walls of the nearest prison, a club bouncer trying to protect and provide for her disabled child, starts to feel the balance of control within slipping again. Little time passes before Geoff Tallow arrives on her doorstep, ready to advise.

Three vulnerable people, each struggling to navigate the labyrinth of existence. Only their social worker, Geoff Tallow, understands the secret that links them to one another. And only Tallow has the authority and capacity to reignite their lost passion for life.

Find out more (captivating characters & killer quotes) by visiting the official From the Horse’s Mouth Collection website.

All Carla’s books are available from Amazon US, Amazon UK and Kobo.

Meet Carla

Avatar 2Carla H. Krueger writes psychological thrillers as herself and dark crime comedies as Erika Blake. She is sometimes referred to as simply ‘Krueger’.

“Freedom is probably my favourite element of being a writer. I’ve worked at jobs where I haven’t felt free – and that can have a deep impact on the soul. Knowing that I choose what I do and that I can design, develop and describe anything I want, when I want and how I want, makes me feel truly alive. It’s like I’ve got this incredible, workable tapestry in my mind – and I hold the tools to shape it.”

Carla has always been rebellious, daring and fiercely independent, even as a child. With a passion for ‘playing out’ and a strong desire to explore places adults warned her against, in all their unpredictable glory, she was a miniature force to be reckoned with. That fearless, risk-taking streak continues untamed, leading her into the lives of some fascinating people, many of whom influence her incredibly varied, entertaining fiction. Each story Carla creates is an adventure of the mind. Each is rich with atmosphere, intrigue and suspense. There are complex, believable characters, a dark, gritty undertone and, of course, Carla’s trademark, no-holds-barred humour.

“Writing intelligently is definitely not about adhering to convention. It’s not always best to follow rules. It’s about getting closer to the edge of the cliff and leaning out, just to see how laughing at safety feels. I want readers to explore new places with my writing, to experience hidden depths within themselves and to consider challenging norms others find difficult to shift. I want to be that voice inside your head that says, “Try it, no matter what” – because that’s what I say to myself before I start any new piece of writing.”

Carla is currently seeking professional representation for her novels, but she will self-publish a selection of short stories in 2014 for readers to enjoy in the meantime. Follow this blog or her twitter account @carlahkrueger for regular updates.

What Makes Carla’s Books Special?

IMG_1687Secret Is Not A Dirty Word

For Carla, writing great fiction is all about keeping secrets. Hardly anyone she knows is aware of what she does. It’s more fun that way. It’s like putting a protective coating on a piece of art – and the artwork always turns out richer and more vibrant.

“I love that feeling I get when I’m sat on a packed train scribbling notes about a new character I want to create or an interesting person I met that day or a strange conversation I overheard – and no one knows what I’m doing. It’s childish, but then being a writer is all about learning how to play and invent all over again.”

Surprise Yourself

Picking up one of Carla’s books is like dipping into a cave of wonders. Her stories are so varied, they could have been written by different people – hence her use of a small selection of pen names. She often refers to the different titles like the split sides of a personality: she has her “light stories”, full of humour and wit, and her “darker books”, woven together like detailed, sombre tapestries.

Intensely Rich

Carla’s passion for understanding people translates into her writing. Her characters are like great coffee – so rich, there are times when you think you might have met them.

Continue reading

Be A Thrill Seeker

Book update for Slaughterhouse fans!

The book is now available in a new-look, matt-finish paperback or e-book at both Amazon and Kobo. If you’re brave enough to have the book on your Goodreads shelf, why not update to the new cover?

Visit the official Slaughterhouse Thriller website to Dare Before You Die or Meet Previous Slaughterhouse Survivors.

If you haven’t already been introduced to Slaughterhouse, here’s a little taste:

A dark, brooding, psychological thriller set in Fort Worth, Texas featuring cool, collected Kris Kartofski, a man who takes a risk any of us could take – meeting a quiet girl for a first date – with devastating consequences.

“The storm batters the roof. Unfazed, Dawn says a rambling prayer about appreciating all the food God gives us every day of our lives and Janis hands me a heavy carving knife for the pig. ‘You’re man of the house now,’ she says softly. I stand up, take the knife from her and nod: the ritual is about to begin.”

Slaughterhouse featured in Crime Fiction Lover’s ‘New Talent November’ series in 2012 and has been nominated for a major 2013 international thriller award.

What’s Being A Writer Really Like?

Brilliant on the good days. Tough on the rest. But, even on the tough days, I feel like I’m doing a great thing. I feel privileged.

I’m fiercely protective of my skill; it’s like a precious metal deep inside a piece of rock and only a few of my closest friends are allowed to attack that rock with a chisel!

When I write fiction, I not only interpret the world in a way others might not, I actually access a different part of my brain when I’m doing it – there is no doubt about this – and I strongly believe the bit I access is also the one I used much more when I was a child. Most adults learn to suppress it, but I didn’t let myself learn that suppression too fast. Moving from adult-think into child-think is an automatic transformation for me; it’s part skill, part lucky charm. It’s ALL the power of the subconscious.

Continue reading

“Fiction Isn’t Safe”

IMG_1435Writing is funny, frightening, flexible, fierce and fun all rolled into one. It’s life, not just a ‘job’. It’s lying to communicate the truth, it’s speaking while being quiet, it’s winning and losing at the same time.

Imagination is key, but so is discipline. Being an artist is not all Dali-esque stuff – being this wild, unhinged, crazy, unscrupulous person going slowly mad in front of the typewriter, as so often portrayed. Many of us are hardworking, self-depreciating perfectionists, focussed on delivering quality products just like any manufacturer. Little machines, working away …

Continue reading