Book / Mystery and Crime
Maurice Hardy was born at Wynyard, Tasmania in 1953. He grew up on a dairy farm in Tasmania’s fertile North West region. From an early age Maurice developed a deep love for music, especially country music, and in his mid teens purchased his first guitar. This proved to be the beginning of a journey consisting of performing, traveling, meeting people and establishing himself in the industry. Hardy played in various bands and also became a prolific songwriter; winning many awards for his songs and vocal abilities. He was an invited guest to many country music events and a regular visitor to the Tamworth Festival.
Beginning his working life as a junior clerk at a fuel terminal, he advanced to become Terminal Manager. After twenty five years in the oil industry, Hardy was forced to change employment when a nation- wide merger meant all the dual facilities were either amalgamated or closed. During this period he had a range of differing, part time jobs until securing a position with a national wholesale distribution company.
However, after becoming the victim of sustained bullying and physiological abuse by a corrupt and manipulative overseer, Hardy decided to try music as a full time career.
Relocating to SE Queensland, and with the unyielding support of Vandra (his wife), he began to achieve acceptance in the highly competitive Queensland music scene. By now Hardy had recorded over twenty albums, and together with sales and live gigs, all the hard work and risk taking appeared to be paying off. Fate, however had a few more cards to deal and within twelve months of each other – (Vandra- Hodgkinson’s Lymphoma; Maurice- aggressive prostate cancer), realised the biggest battles were still to come.It was during these long sessions of treatment and recovery, Hardy’s other passion for reading novels come to the fore. Then, without really planning to do so, he sat at his laptop and began to write a story. 95 000 words later and after many months of editing; ‘Shadows of Perfection’ was born. Maurice has currently five completed novels.
TITLE 1......SHADOWS OF PREFECTION
The daughter of a wealthy farmer and a beautiful actress/ model, Sandra grew up on a vast cattle and cropping property called ‘Lenavale’.
A strong willed although naïve teenager, she embarks on a roller- coaster journey from her insular childhood to an elite city boarding college. It is here she experiences some of the good and the ugly sides of society. However, after meeting a gifted and ambitious athlete, Sandra becomes hooked on middle distance running, leading her to the very highest level of track and field athletics.
Her performances and incredible mental toughness are noticed by Dr. Ian Anderson, a brilliant but eccentric geneticist. Recognised and revered world wide as a genius, Anderson is attributed with some incredible breakthroughs in science and medicine. Now he is determined to discover the role genetics and heredity traits play giving people, like Sandra that elusive x factor.
However, during one of his bizarre experiments, Anderson unwittingly releases an indescribable evil. This terrifying and powerful force has the potential to infiltrate every layer of society and wreak havoc and chaos on an unsuspecting public.
With Anderson’s activities protected by red tape and corrupt bureaucrats, Sandra and her friends are left with no option; they must confront his hellish and deadly creation.
In the desperate final battle; love, loyalty and friendships become blurred and confused, as they enter the realm of their darkest nightmares; a place from which there is no escape.
TITLE 2……BEYOND THE COMFORT ZONE( SEQUEL TO SHADOWS OF PERFRCTION).
Australian adventurer Leonie Pirelli and her partner, British film maker Julian Welsh had achieved international recognition and critical acclaim for their innovative and entertaining wildlife studies - however when tragedy strikes, Leonie turns to her three closest friends for comfort and support.
When the opportunity arises for them to join the back-up crew of a scientific expedition, they consider it an excellent chance to combine adventure, a holiday and a bonding session; and be paid handsomely for the privilege.
The voyage to a remote part of the South Pacific is shrouded in secrecy. Including the four girls, a team of eleven sets off aboard the luxury yacht Albatross Queen, owned by a beautiful but mysterious English woman called Lisa Darby. But as the journey progresses; the mistrust, deceit and secret agendas among the crew members leads to escalating conflict and threatens to jeopardise the entire project.
The origin concept of an enjoyable time shared between friends rapidly degenerates into a dangerous nightmare and a fight for survival. However they were to discover the true horror was not on board the Albatross Queen but lurking in the gloomy depths, beneath the waves.
TITLE 3......JUST LIKE ANIMALS
Charismatic animal rights crusader Pamela Bree was much loved and admired around the world for her high profile and courageous exposure of the plight of many exotic and endangered wild animals. With best friend veterinarian Sally Keller, she travelled to some of the most dangerous areas of Africa and SE Asia, often foiling the activities of criminals and poachers.
Pamela was based in the small Australian rural community of Mount Avon where she, Sally and troubled granddaughter Charlotte ran a wildlife rehabilitation centre.
However when it became known their most famous resident was diagnosed with a terminal disease, the whole community rallied to organise a fund raising event. All the proceeds would go to Pamela for medical expenses and the daily operation of her complex. The event called ‘Back to Mount Avon’ would be run over a weekend and a committee was formed to oversee the planning.
Local electrician and lovable larrikin Robbie Strang, had the task of contacting previous residents and celebrities who at some time had an association with the region. Robbie stunned the organisers when he was able to lure a Hollywood megastar to attend the festival, attracting national and world-wide focus on the tiny township.
Visitors and celebrities flocked to Mount Avon, but at the height of celebrations Mother Nature intervened. Torrential rain brought major flooding, completely isolating the town To compound the situation an outbreak of a deadly, highly contagious virus was detected,forcing authorities to place the entire community under strict quarantine and establish an exclusion zone around the town perimeter. Tough military man Major-General Edward Plunkett was appointed to lead the task force. Given emergency powers, Plunkett quickly imposed martial law and curfews to contain the virus and discover its origin.
Now trapped, the mood among the overcrowded, panic-stricken people rapidly changed from celebratory to anger and defiance as they tried to avoid the virus and escape the nightmare. Investigations inadvertently uncovered a network of criminal activity adding a dangerous twist to the already grave situation.
Now locked in a desperate fight for survival, mob mentality took over ...and normally civilised human beings started behaving just like animals.
TITLE 4......FORKS IN THE ROAD
Teenager Cathy Kirby grew up in a rough suburb where drug abuse, violence and street gangs were the norm. Striving for a better life, she takes an extreme and dangerous course to achieve her dreams. However when the ill fated plan fails, her world collapses around her, eventually leading to a period behind the walls of a women’s correctional facility. Here at the mercy of callous guards and hardened criminals Cathy fortunately, is befriended by a strong ally who protects her from the more unsavoury elements prevalent among the inmates. It is here she also meets a scary, unstable psychopath. Know as ‘Ghost Girl’ this woman is responsible for multiple horrific murders and is feared by both the residents and staff of the prison. When her friend is released, Cathy, fearing for her life, successfully attempts a daring escape. Now on the run she travels to some of the harshest and most remote regions of Australia.
Jarrod Donaldson, an ambitious, hardworking young man had generated a successful carpentry/ house renovation business only to lose everything as a result of a bitter custody/settlement Court order instigated by his manipulative and greedy ex partner. Disillusioned and shattered, Jarrod seeks a new start in remote Western Australia. It is here Jarrod and Cathy meet and the chemistry is immediately obvious as they become an inseparable team. But Jarrod too, has skeletons in the cupboard and with Cathy’s past threatening to catch up with them; theirs is a precarious day by day existence. Adding to their fears, they hear of a series of murders where the victims are linked to them, plus the mysterious ‘Ghost Girl’ escaped custody of may be searching for Cathy.
An incredible combination of coincidence and decisions had led them to this point, now the future would be determined by which forks in the road they chose.
TITLE 5......QUEEN MALLAGAENIA (AND THEVALLEY OF THE DEMON).
Legend, myths and folklore referred to is as ‘The Valley Of The Demon’. Ancient Roman, Greek and Egyptian texts described the existence of a large fertile valley totally surrounded by cliffs and mountains. Being virtually inaccessible, it was dismissed by the great powers as irrelevant. Legend tells of an orderly civilisation evolving in the sanctuary of this fortress-like valley, under the rule of a powerful and mysterious Queen named Mallagaenia.
However in 34BC, a massive earthquake erupted burying the entire valley under millions of tonnes of rocks and debris.
Convinced of it’s authenticity, renowned archaeologist Dr Frank Tyrell mounted an extensive search and after fifteen year of secretive and meticulous excavation, uncovered the lost city.
Armed with irrefutable evidence, Tyrell prepared to announce one of the greatest finds of all time to the world. However during the highly orchestrated event, history was repeated. Another earthquake chose that precise moment to strike.
In the ensuing chaos and mayhem, only a hand full of people was able to scramble into the subterranean tunnels to survive the disaster.
Now trapped in these ancient passageways and chambers, the survivors soon discovered they had entered a strange, dark world. A timeless place filled with riches and life-like statues; a place where the rules of nature and logical understanding no longer existed; a dangerous and terrifying world...Mallagaenia’s world.
All titles are available through Amazon (paperbacks) and Kindle (ebooks)
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