“First The Amendment Killer, next The Puppet Master, and now Payback,
whenever Barak brings it, it’s tense, timely, and terrific!”

Lee Child, #1 New York Times Bestselling author of the Jack Reacher novels

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Ron Barak’s The Amendment Killer might well serve as a primer for the commercial legal thriller. The concept is high, the pacing supersonic, the characters well-drawn and sympathetic. The novel should come with a warning: addictive reading ahead. It’s as good a legal thriller as I’ve read this year.”

John Lescroart, author of a dozen New York Times bestselling novels

“With an unparalleled sense of terror forewarned on the opening page, Ron Barak’s The Amendment Killer is a high-speed, tense political thriller about one of today’s most fundamental issues, the integrity of our Supreme Court.”

Andrew Gross, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The One Man

The Amendment Killer is a high concept, hybrid blend of a political, psychological and action thriller all rolled into a smooth, savory, and suspenseful mix. Ron Barak manages to channel the best of John Grisham, David Baldacci and even Steve Berry in this amazingly timely tale cast with a Supreme Court backdrop. As prescient as it is thought-provoking and as much fun as it is factual, this is reading entertainment of the highest order. I’d be shocked if this book doesn’t become a bestseller.”

Jon Land, USA Today bestselling author of Strong Light of Day

The Amendment Killer is a fast-moving, tense, power-charged thriller where the life of a young girl with diabetes and the foundations of American democracy are both at stake. Combining contemporary, timely themes with a classic moral dilemma, this novel entertains and educates.”

K.J. Howe, author of The Freedom Broker

“Blurring moral and legal lines while gripping every parent by the throat who journeys into The Amendment Killer, Ron Barak delivers a captivating, chilling and clever read.”

Sandra Brannan, award-winning author of the Liv Bergen Mystery Series

“From its electrifying opening line to its powerful conclusion, The Amendment Killer is a ripped-from-tomorrow’s headlines story of law and politics set against the backdrop of the Supreme Court. But more so, it’s a story about the lengths we will go for the ones we love. Timely, fast-paced, and heartfelt, you’ll mourn the turning of the last page. Ron Barak is a writer to watch.”

Anthony Franze, author of The Outsider

Ron Barak has the mind of a legal scholar, the fight of a bareknuckle litigator, and the determination of the former Olympic athlete that he is. Add to those distinctions now the imagination of a natural born storyteller.

David Corbett, award-winning author of The Art of Character and The Mercy of The Night

Ron is always willing to do what he can to make the world a better place. He and his wife, Barbie, have been very generous in their support of my efforts to raise money for diabetes research.

New York Times Bestselling Author Brenda Novak

From the vantage point of one who has spent many years in Washington, D.C., I recently had the pleasure of reading an advance copy of Ronald S. Barak’s latest political and legal thriller, The Amendment Killer, a terrific, timely and remarkably accurate portrayal of modern day political dysfunction centered in our capital. Blurring contemporary reality with his own brand of fiction, Barak cleverly intertwines the kidnapping of the 11-year-old diabetic granddaughter of a Supreme Court justice to control the outcome of Congress’ attempt to persuade the Court to invalidate a constitutional amendment criminalizing political abuse and corruption. I have read many of John Grisham’s bestselling novels. Barak matches Grisham step for step. He had me turning the pages of The Amendment Killer from the first page to the last. I thoroughly enjoyed the ride.

Dennis  DeConcini, United States Senator, Ret

In The Amendment Killer, Ron Barak has crafted an entertaining and engaging novel that captures and reflects the current American political landscape.

Ron Galperin, Los Angeles City Controller

The Amendment Killer is a brilliant and timely novel about a Supreme Court challenge to a constitutional amendment enacted by ‘we the people’ to end corruption on the part of their political representatives, and demonstrate that their government is meant to serve rather than be served. More than just a page turning political and legal thriller, Barak demonstrates an impressive and thought provoking command of real world politics, constitutional law reduced to its basics, and the ins and outs of lawyering at its best.

Donald Earl Childress III, Associate Professor of Law, Pepperdine University School of Law

In The Amendment Killer, an engaging and entertaining suspense thriller about an enchanting 11-year-old type 1 diabetic youngster kidnapped by those who would control the swing vote of her Supreme Court justice grandfather in a pending case of immense Constitutional importance to the future of our country, Ron Barak has merged the worlds of political and legal intrigue and diabetes reality with the same precision, skill, sensitivity, and enthusiasm he demonstrates every day in managing his own real world diabetes, and his efforts to support diabetes research.

Anne Peters, M.D., internationally recognized diabetologist and author of Conquering Diabetes

“One of the year’s best thrillers!”

–Best Thriller Magazine

Great news for readers who love smart writing, realistic plots, and timely topics. U.S. District Court Judge Cyrus Brooks and homicide detective Frank Lotello are back in action! We first met the pair in The Amendment Killer, Ron Barak’s sizzling 2017 novel. Barak, a master of the hybrid legal/political thriller, always seems to be a step ahead of the headlines. He finished The Puppet Master well before the wave of pipe bombs were delivered to prominent political personalities. So we should have no trouble buying into the new novel’s inciting incident: the assassination of three Washington politicians in three days. Were the politicians corrupt? Has someone been framed for the killings? Will justice be done? Barak’s finely honed storytelling technique is on brightly lit display. In brief, brisk, suspenseful chapters with plot twists aplenty, Barak takes the reader on a roller coaster ride through the marble corridors and wood paneled offices and courtrooms of Washington, D.C. Best keep your seatbelt buckled! The Puppet Master is a helluva ride.”

Paul Levine, bestselling author of Bum Deal

The Puppet Master is a political thriller extraordinaire, chock full of headline-grabbing ingredients spiced with scarily prescient speculation about the political state of our country today. Ron Barak chooses from a menu mastered by the likes of David Baldacci and Brad Meltzer in crafting a tale as compelling as it is ominous. Riveting, relentless, a story as well plotted as it is crafted.”

Jon Land, USA Today bestselling author of both the Murder, She Wrote series and the Caitlin Strong novels

“Ron Barak’s The Puppet Master moves through D.C. politics with the wicked swiftness of an assassin’s bullet. Lean, mean, and razor sharp.

Barry Lancet, award-winning author of Japantown and The Spy Across the Table

“Barak shakes Washington D.C. to the core with an all-too-real political and legal blockbuster. In this masterfully plotted whodunnit, The Puppet Master, clues are peppered throughout the text in such a subtle and clever manner, the ending is both surprising and inevitable. Brilliant and believable.

K.J. Howe, bestselling author of The Freedom Broker and Skyjack

The Puppet Master is a deft legal and political thriller that taps into growing public dissatisfaction with those who govern us. Ronald S Barak uses his two engaging leads, Trial Court Judge Cyrus Brooks and Homicide Detective Frank Lotello, to explore complex host of moral and political issues. An accomplished, tense thriller, The Puppet Master offers real depth that keeps one thinking long after finishing the final gripping page.

Adam Hamdy, author of the internationally acclaimed Pendulum trilogy

The Puppet Master is absolutely riveting! With a story easily pulled from tomorrow’s headlines, before they’re even written, Ron Barak unravels this whodunnit political thriller with the skill of a seasoned veteran.”

J.D. Barker, International Bestselling Author of The Fourth Monkey

“Politics. Sex. Power. Betrayal. Intrigue. Conspiracy. Murder.  The strings of suspense Ronald S. Barak expertly pulls in his newest whodunnit mystery thriller, The Puppet Master.”

Sandra Brannan, award-winning author of the Liv Bergen Mystery Series

“A high concept  thriller that pulls you in from the very first page. Washington power players, back door deals, and richly layered characters. Ron Barak’s The Puppet Master is a story that will stay with you long after you’ve read the last word.”

Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

The Puppet Master moves at the speed of a bullet, deliciously skewering power Washington along the way. You’ll hope for a delayed flight, a snow storm, or a long wait at the doctor’s office to finish this one! Another killer thriller from Ron Barak’s Brooks/Lotello series.”

Anthony Franze, author of The Outsider

“Ronald S. Barak’s The Puppet Master is a masterfully plotted whodunnit. Savvy D.C. trial court judge Cyrus Brooks and crafty D.C. homicide detective Frank Lotello—powerful and appealing characters with whom you’d love to spend an evening–each smart, humorous, and possessing a strong sense of honesty and morality—team up to lead the reader into the corrupt world of politics in order to solve a series of murders committed by a presumably warped and broken adversary. Barak gives us a terrific suspenseful thriller novel laden with character, pizzazz, and a lot of heart.”

Yigal Zur, Israeli international bestselling author of Death in Shangri-La

“Ernest Hemingway once wrote, ‘All good books have one thing in common – they are truer than if they had really happened.’  He must’ve had Ron Barak’s latest novel, The Puppet Master, in mind.  With the eye of a lawyer and the touch of an artist, Barak masterfully paints a picture in words that keep his readers captivated until the very last page.  The writing is crisp and compelling, the story line is a true page turner, and the result is as satisfying as Hemingway had in mind.  The Puppet Master sets the stage brilliantly as a prequel to Barak’s first novel, The Amendment Killer.   Over my almost forty-year career as an historian I have come to revere the written word Ron Barak’s works yet again show me why.  I eagerly await the next volume in Barak’s Brooks/Lotello thriller series, for one thing is certain:  Ron Barak does not disappoint!”

Jason H. Silverman, Ellison Capers Palmer Jr. Professor of History Emeritus, Author of Lincoln and the Immigrant and the forthcoming historical novel, Lincoln’s Magician

Payback, timely, poignant and terrifying. Every writer’s nightmare, or fantasy.”

Robert Dugoni, #1 international bestselling author of the Tracy Crosswhite novels

“A deftly plotted, highly entertaining island murder mystery, page-turning Payback breaks new ground in the political and legal thriller genre and is sure to broaden author Ronald S. Barak’s burgeoning fan base.”

–Best Thriller Magazine

“In Payback, Barak’s intriguing third Brooks/Lotello mystery thriller featuring retired federal judge Cyrus Brooks and homicide investigator Frank Lotello (after 2017’s The Amendment Killer and 2019’s The Puppet Master), Cyrus’s wife, Eloise, hopes to dampen her husband’s passion for engaging in hazardous investigations with Frank by encouraging his interest in novel writing instead. Eloise gets him to agree to attend Thriller Jubilee, a weeklong writers’ conference being held on an island off the coast of Spain, hosted by The International Thrillers Organization. Eloise, Frank, and Frank’s wife accompany Cyrus to the event. Chapters told from the perspective of an unidentified person, whose first shared thoughts are homicidal, raise the tension. Those intentions appear to have implications after several people slated to speak at Thriller Jubilee disappear. Adding depth are the debates among TITO’s leaders about the ethical obligation to warn the conference attendees about a potential killer in their midst. Fans of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None may appreciate this suspenseful homage.”

–Publishers Weekly Best Books

“This time, in Payback, Barak takes on the writing world in this entertaining and brilliant blockbuster.

K.J. Howe, bestselling author of The Freedom Broker and Skyjack

“Taken from today’s news, Payback is compelling and captivating. A must for readers and writers alike.”

Jon Land, USA Today bestselling author of the Jessica Fletcher Murder, She Wrote novels

“Ronald S. Barak’s latest Brooks/Lotello thriller, Payback, is a whodunit that takes place at the Thriller Jubilee, a mystery writers’ conference on a Spanish island. The central mystery keeps the audience guessing thanks to a solid cast of potential killers. When the killer is finally revealed, it is a pleasant and satisfying shock. Despite a deus ex machina moment with a kidnapped person’s escape, the conclusion is neat and nice, leaving the good guys standing tall. Payback is an excellent murder mystery made colorful by its publishing industry insider cast.”

–Foreward Magazine

Ron Barak knows so much about writers and serial killers, it’s downright scary. Warning: Replace the batteries in your smoke detector before reading. Payback will have you turning the pages so fast, the book will catch fire!”

Paul Levine, #1 Amazon bestselling author of the Jake Lassiter series

“The Brooks/Lotello stories are immediately likable and pack a bone-jarring punch. In Payback, Barak swings for the fences and knocks it out of the park.

Barry Lancet, award-winning author of The Spy Across the Table

Payback conjures the mastery of Agatha Christie when attendees of a remote writers retreat begin to mysteriously disappear. Ronald S. Barak’s seemingly amateur sleuth, looking only to hone his writing skills, finds himself in the midst of murder rather than the middle of a manuscript—all of which gives a new meaning to the maxim: ‘publish or perish.’”

Rick Pullen, bestselling author of Naked Ambition and Naked Truth

Payback scoops you up in the first paragraph with snappy, witty internal dialogue from an intriguing character and holds you through a plot that will thoroughly entertain any writer or reader of thriller fiction. Barak has a superb way of grabbing the reader with interesting characters, snappy dialogue, and a plot that anyone, but especially thriller writers, will love. Great idea for a novel. I loved it.”

John F. Dobbyn, bestselling author of High Stakes

“Brooks and Lotello are back with a vengeance, in another killer thriller from suspense master Ron Barak. After this one, Payback, I’ll never attend another writer’s conference without looking over my shoulder . . . ”

Anthony Franze, author of The Outsider

Payback offers another suspenseful ride with Brooks and Lotello at the helm. This time the murders occur at a place where everyone is a suspect—a secluded international resort hosting a thriller writers conference. Ronald S. Barak once again combines his legal knowledge with his talent for writing thrillers in a one-of-a-kind story that readers will not forget.”

T.F. Allen, author of The Keeper and The Night Janitor

“Fasten your seatbelt, Barak has done it again! A breakneck thrill ride with an unforgettable antagonist. This one will keep you up way past your bedtime.”

Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

Payback is a rare pleasure that combines the world of thrillers and mysteries and murders and investigations with a unique insight into the underpinnings of the literary world and writers. Ronald S. Barak constructs a winding and devious plot with a masterful hand. Colorful storytelling at its best.”

Yigal Zur, Israeli international bestselling author of Death in Shangri-La

Payback is a cleverly plotted, tightly wound whodunit that keeps you on the edge of your seat ‘til the very end!”

Charles Rosenberg, author of Death on High Floor

“In Payback, the third in the acclaimed Brooks/Lotello thriller series, author Ronald S. Barak takes his two protagonists out of their D.C. element (and jurisdiction) to attend a writers conference on an island resort off the coast of Spain where they embark upon a ‘deep dive’ into the world of famous mystery and crime wordsmiths. But Barak takes his meta whodunit a step further, bringing the well-known storytellers themselves into the fray, not only as characters … but also as victims! Barak delivers an astute commentary on his own world of craft in this cleverly plotted adventure full of masterful twists and turns, leaving it to his readers to separate reality from fiction in this innovative and exciting novel.”

BookTrib, the leading source for book news and reviews

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