Gaijin Cowgirl, my debut novel, is available on Amazon in print or Kindle format. The publisher is Crime Wave Press.
Working Tokyo nightclubs is easy money for beautiful and troubled American Val Benson – until a wealthy client with a dark past and sinister hobbies reluctantly gives up a map to one of the greatest treasures lost in World War II. With yakuza, motorcycle gangs, rogue CIA, treasure hunters, pimps, Thai boxers and her Congressman father snapping at her high heels, Val burns a trail of destruction across Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand and the Burmese borderlands to get the loot before someone less deserving does.
“Gaijin Cowgirl is an absolute typhoon of a book. It slammed into me and left me going, ‘Wow, where did that come from – is there any more?'”
––Stuart Beaton, professor of literature, Tianjin University
“The latest blood and guts novel from ‘quality pulp’ publisher Crime Wave Press, Gaijin Cowgirl is a gripping and escalating read.”
––Chiang Mai City News
What the reviewers on Amazon say:
“Gaijin Cowgirl is a high-octane chase thriller”.
“Someone call the Coen brothers and get this made into a movie please!”
“A fast thrilling action adventure.”
Eclectic blogger Voicu Mihnea Simandan, a Thai-based Romanian archer, asks me about future projects on his eponymous blog. Dated May 12, 2014.
Chiang Mai City News ran an interview with me on January 10, 2014 about Gaijin Cowgirl and recent travels, in which I reveal strange accounters while wearing a sarong…
Listen to me being interviewed by Stuart Beaton, professor of literature at Tianjin University, on Gaijin Cowgirl and writing. Professor Beaton produces a series of podcasts featuring writers. Dated October 8, 2013.
The following are excerpts with links of interviews from a virtual book tour for Gaijin Cowgirl.
From “A Book Lover’s Library”
Q: Where did the title of your book come from?
JD: The protagonist, Val Benson, is the Gaijin Cowgirl, although she is never referred to as such in the novel. Gaijin is the Japanese word for ‘foreigner’, and Val works as a hostess at a Tokyo club called Cowboy. As I was writing the novel, I resisted this title because I thought a foreign word would be a problem. But attempts at alternatives only showed how good a title Gaijin Cowgirl is. (Read the entire interview here.)
From “Books, Books, and More Books”
Q: How do you make your work unique from other authors in the same genre?
JD: Gaijin Cowgirl is fiction but it’s based squarely in this world. It unearths a lot of forgotten history – or history that certain groups would prefer we forget. This includes how the Japanese enslaved ‘comfort women’ and links that to modern-day human trafficking; the worst aspects of the US involvement in the Vietnam war; and the realities of life in the underbelly of cities like Tokyo and Bangkok. But while those themes are present, they exist to serve the story. Gaijin Cowgirl is above all a crisply paced form of entertainment. (Read the entire interview here.)
From “DWED Blog”
Q: Who is your favorite character in Gaijin Cowgirl and why?
JD: The lead character, Val Benson, is a classic anti-hero, or anti-heroine, if you prefer. She’s a selfish, superficial, manipulative piece of work. She’s also super hot. I guess she’s the kind of woman that a lot of men desire but few possess – and she wouldn’t be worth the trouble if you did. But the story is how she ends up having to survive by digging for an inner intelligence and courage. I think this makes her interesting. She was also difficult to write; I never knew what the hell she’d do next. (Read the entire interview here.)
From “Books & Tales”
Q: Are you a morning person or a night owl?
JD: For what, exactly?
Q: What have you learned about writing and publishing since you first started?
JD: A good editor matters. Someone investing money in your work, even modestly, still matters. Self-published is not “published”; sorry. But the internet has blurred the marketing aspects between published and self-published. (Read the entire interview here.)
From “Romance & Inspiration”
Q: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
JD: Fun question. The protagonist is Val Benson, a beautiful honey-haired, brown-eyed American twenty-something. I did have a movie star in mind when I created this character: Sharon Stone, circa her “Basic Instinct” days. I’m dating myself, and Ms. Stone, but not any blonde bombshell could play Val. She has to have a toughness to her. Val’s best friend is Suki, a Japanese hostess. There are many beautiful Japanese actresses but in looks they often tend toward either the cutie-pie or the porn star, and Suki is neither. Google “Mirei Kiritani” or “Rosa Kano” for looks that work for Suki. (See photos of the ‘cast’ of Gaijin Cowgirl and read the full interview here.)