Tag Archives: Manhattan KS


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Publicity Contact: Ian Crutcher // ian.crutcher@harpercollins.com



LS Hawker
May 3, 2016
Witness Impulse
Fiction / Thrillers / Suspense
$2.99 USD, $2.99 CAD, £2.99 GBP, €2.72 EUR

Perfect for fans of hard-hitting, fast-paced thrillers, BODY AND BONE continues what LS Hawker does best: creating atmospheric, twisting narratives with strong female heroines that you can’t help but root for

by LS Hawker

LS Hawker’s debut novel, The Drowning Game, was recently nominated for Best Debut Thriller by the International Thriller Writers organization.  She continues her signature atmospheric, twisty suspenseful writing with BODY AND BONE (Witness Impulse; On-sale 5/3/16; e-ISBN 9780062435224; $2.99) which questions the nature of identity and how far a young mother is willing to go to run from the mistakes of her past.


He wants to destroy her reputation.
He wants to destroy her life.
He wants to destroy…her.


Nessa Donati used to be a happily married mother with a successful music blog and satellite radio show. But that was before her husband John relapsed on drugs and went missing. That was before he was presumed dead. And before she was framed for his murder.

When a commenter on Nessa’s blog starts harassing her online, Nessa shrugs it off. Trolls are a part of internet life. But eventually the troll begins threatening her safety and releasing personal details… details only her husband would know.

As Nessa’s life is dismantled piece by piece, her only option is to find John and put a stop to the lies. But when their son becomes a pawn in his twisted game, she must face a disturbing truth: Maybe John isn’t tormenting her, after all. But if he’s not…who is? And how far will this monster go to exact revenge?

BODY AND BONE takes online harassment to whole new extremes in this dangerously entertaining thriller that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.

The Power of the Purse

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An interviewer recently posed this question to me: Do you have a signature accessory, color, fragrance, phrase, or meal?

Which caused my inner twelve-year-old boy to roll his eyes (What kinda girlie question is that?) and decide that the question required an asshole answer, like

If you consider bourbon-water-rocks a meal, then YES, I DO.

But upon further review, I realized I do kind of have a signature thang, or used to, anyway. (So I tied the little monster up and banished him to the basement so I could tell you about it.)

As it turns out, I’ve always carried kind of…weird purses. Maybe this is because the adolescent male who runs my brain part-time hates carrying a purse and therefore has the final word on handbag styles.

In high school, I had a clutch that resembled a rolled-up magazine (Playgirl, that bizarre ’70s answer to Playboy Magazine) with a half-nekkid man and blissful-looking woman lying next to him on the cover. You can imagine the kind of attention my clutch attracted, which came to an end when it began to disintegrate at the end of junior year, being constructed partially from an actual paper magazine cover. The Playgirl purse passed into history, much like articles with titles like CIRCUMCISION FOR WOMEN: The Kindest Cut of All, which was one of the WTF headlines on the cover of that particular issue. I mean, were they actually advocating genital mutilation?

In college I went through a gigantic-purse phase so I could carry around all the accoutrements of a pre-hipster writer wannabe: a miniature tape recorder, a notebook and assortment of pens, a pack or two of cigarettes, a lighter. My favorite enormous one was black, big enough to fit a ten-gallon aquarium in it, made of sturdy strips of cloth in different textures sewn into an Escheresque pattern.

One weekend I traveled from Lawrence to Manhattan to visit my K-State friend Marianne. We went to our favorite club, the Avalon Ballroom, to hear Glow, one of our favorite Kansas City-based bands. After much dancing and imbibing, I took a dance break and happily swayed to Glow’s note-perfect rendition of “Let Me Roll it” by Paul McCartney and Wings, drink in hand, smoking a Marlboro Light 100. Out of nowhere, this guy runs up, wrestles my purse away from me, drops it to the ground, and empties ​my bourbon and water on it. As you can imagine, I was not happy. I started to scream at him when he held my purse up and showed me the smoking, smoldering hole the size of a tambourine in it. So I bought him a drink, because he saved me from not-so-spontaneous combustion. I wore a lot of hairspray in those days.

Years later, as a subversive suburban mom, I carried a purse constructed from a Colorado license plate (not mine). The ends were made from metal center hubcaps, the strap was tire rubber, and a bottle cap made up the hasp. It was always a great conversation starter, but I had to stop carrying it when my daughters reached a certain age. Along about the time they turned three, they were at the perfect height to experience the over-the-shoulder battering-ram effect. When one of them walked at my side, that purse would smash into the back of her head and knock her to the ground.

The metallic tube turned out to be an effective assault deterrent. Once potential assailants witnessed the Power of the Purse, and heard the solid, substantial-sounding thunk of it bashing into my kids’ skulls, they ran the other way. Don’t worry—there were no concussions, but it was painful nonetheless. For me, I mean, having to give up that purse for a period of time.

Finally, there are my electric guitar purses. The smaller one depicts Elvis in his heyday before the peanut-butter-and-bacon sandwiches kicked in that I purchased in Vegas. The larger came from Walt Disney World and is emblazoned with the Aerosmith Rock ’n Roller Coaster logo.

These days, I carry the smallest possible purse with just enough room for credit cards and my driver’s license. My former self would be bitterly disappointed, but the junior-high-school basement-monster boy in me is overjoyed.

Used Soap

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After college, I lived in Manhattan, Kansas, and worked at radio station KQLA-FM. During that time, I was so poor that at one point all I had to eat for six weeks was frozen English muffins. I was so poor I qualified for government cheese, but I didn’t know where to get it. I was so poor that whenever I (or anyone else) stubbed out a cigarette, I would carefully roll out whatever was left in the butt, save it in a bag, and roll my own from this righteous blend of fine tobaccos. I was so poor, my sister likes to say, that I had to buy used soap.

I was so poor…I actually sold some of my vinyl.

That’s how desperate for cash I was. It was a dark, dark day. I agonized over what I could possibly live without and finally settled on ten record albums from my beloved stacks. These I wrapped up in a garbage bag and set out for the used-record store.

Since it only got 8 miles to the gallon, my 1976 Lincoln Town Car was out of commission, so I had to walk the mile and a half with my bag o’ music in tow. This is about a six-pound bundle of unwieldiness, so I tried to hold it like a baby, but it was slippery and awkward and I couldn’t keep it up. So I stacked the albums on my head.

Now, this is not the weirdest thing I’ve ever done, not by a long shot. But from the outraged stares up and down Poyntz Avenue, you’d have thought I was dragging a burning puppy behind me. People shouted at me to cut it out and knock it off, and who did I think I was and what did I think I was doing.

Before all the stares and jeers, I’d been about to take them off my head because it wasn’t as easy as it looked in National Geographic. But once the cacophony of indignation started up, I stubbornly left the stack on my head. My neck hurt. Sweat poured down my face. My hands swelled. But I would not give these yahoos the satisfaction of acquiescing to their goofy demands.

One guy in a pickup truck took it upon himself to make me take them off my head. He drove around the block a couple of times, and then with each successive pass, he revved his engine and gunned it toward me, screeching his brakes just before hitting the curb. I must confess, it almost worked, especially that first time when I wasn’t expecting it.

I finally made it to the record store, sweaty, exhausted, sore, yet triumphant.

Then this weird thing happened. I got all shaky and hyperventilatey. I couldn’t do it. I could only make myself sell two of the ten.

After all, how many copies of The Wall does one actually need?

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