Blog Tour + Giveaway: Abaddon's Locusts (BJ Vinson Mystery #5) by Don Travis

Welcome author Don Travis and Other Worlds Ink on the Abaddon's Locusts (BJ Vinson Mystery #5)! Learn more about the latest in the mystery series, check out today's exclusive excerpt and enter in the $10 DSP Publications gift card giveaway!

Abaddon's Locusts - Don Travis

DSP Publications author Don Travis has a new gay mystery book out: Abaddon's Locusts.

When B. J. Vinson, confidential investigator, learns his young friend, Jazz Penrod, has disappeared and has not been heard from in a month, he discovers some ominous emails. Jazz has been corresponding with a “Juan” through a dating site, and that single clue draws BJ and his significant other, Paul Barton, into the brutal but lucrative world of human trafficking.

Their trail leads to a mysterious Albuquerquean known only as Silver Wings, who protects the Bulgarian cartel that moves people—mostly the young and vulnerable—around the state to be sold into modern-day slavery, sexual and otherwise. Can BJ and Paul locate and expose Silver Wings without putting Jazz’s life in jeopardy? Hell, can they do so without putting themselves at risk? People start dying as BJ, Paul, and Henry Secatero, Jazz's Navajo half-brother, get too close. To find the answer, bring down the ring, and save Jazz, they’ll need to locate the place where human trafficking ties into the Navajo Nation and the gay underground.

About the Series:

BJ Vinson, a gay former-Marine, ex-cop licensed private investigator tries to pick his cases carefully, but prior loyalties or his sense of justice or something always gets in his way. He finds himself traveling all over his beloved state of New Mexico with his companion Paul Barton to mend other people's problems.

DSP Publications (eBook) | DSP Publications (paperback) | Amazon | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | QueeRomance Ink | Google Play


Don and DSP Publications are giving away a $10 DSPP gift card with this tour.

For a chance to win, enter via Rafflecopter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Direct Link:


Abaddon's Locusts banner


Two men gazed down at the sleeping youth sprawled across the mattress. The older, his pleasant features blemished by a glint of cruelty in his dark eyes, smoothed silver wings of luxuriant hair at his temples before handing over a number of $100 bills to a young Hispanic almost as handsome as the boy on the bed.

Now fully clothed, Silver Wings exuded the authority of a player, of someone who counted. “Fucking beautiful. How old did you say he is?”

“Eighteen. Barely. Know that’s older’n you usually like. But he’s a rare one, no? As linda as a woman and as macho as a man. He took care of you, huh?”

Silver Wings rubbed his eyes as if remembering the last hour. “Fantastic. Must have worn himself out. Does he usually go comatose?”

“Ah, that is the drug. He claims he gets a bigger bang by charging up. But you benefit as well, no?” He eyed his companion. “He is yours for $25,000.”

Interest flickered and died. “Tempting. But my household isn’t set up for that kind of arrangement. I prefer to call when I feel the need. Even if that means sharing him.”

“You don’t take him, then we move him south.”

“South? To Mexico, you mean? Juárez?” That wouldn’t be too bad. El Paso was a short hop, and Juárez lay just across the border.

“At first, but then we gonna trade him up.”

Silver Wings understood the human trafficking language of trading up, but it was unusual to move members of the “family” out of country these days. “In Juárez? Sounds more like trading him down.”

¡Órale! There’s some big money in Juárez. But a bigwig in the Middle East went apeshitover the kid’s pics. He wants him. And for a lot more than twenty-five. I only give you that price to let you know how much we ’preciateyour help.”

“Middle East, huh?” Silver Wings licked his lips. “Put off that transfer while I see if I can work something out.”

“Two days. Then I gotta move him. You know, easier to ship him overseas from Mexico than from the States.”

Silver Wings’ voice hardened. “You can do better than that. Give me a week to reorder my life. I’d like to visit him a couple of times. Usual fee, of course. That gives you reason enough to hold him here.”

“Okay, but not no more’n a week. I got people to answer to, you know.”

“I’d like him again tomorrow night, but it will have to be late. I have a dinner meeting.”

Hispano lowered his head. “As you wish. All you gotta do is call me.”

Silver Wings left the motel reluctantly. What would take place in that room now that they were alone? Just thinking about it raised a bead of sweat on his upper lip.

His mind returned to the offer he had received. The boy was expensive, and the economy was still struggling to recover from the Great Recession of 2008… but it was only money.

Chapter 1

Monday, August 9, 2010, Albuquerque, New Mexico

I parked the Impala in front of my detached single-car garage and sat for a moment trying to figure out the cacophony on the radio. I’d failed to reset the station after Paul and I went for a rare game of weekend golf at the North Valley Country Club. Paul Barton was the sun in my sky, but I still struggled to understand my companion’s taste in music. Now something called “Alejandro” by a gal proclaiming herself to be Lady Gaga committed assault on my classical-music-loving ears. As I switched off the noise and stepped from the car, a high, uncertain voice snagged my attention.

“Yoo-hoo, Mr. Vinson. BJ!”

Mrs. Gertrude Wardlow, the late-afternoon sun catching in wayward strands of her white hair, waved at me from the foot of her driveway. She had lived in the white brick across the street for as long as I could remember. Mrs. W. and her husband, Herb, had been with the Drug Enforcement Administration from the time it was formed in 1973 until their retirement. Some ten years ago, Herb passed on to his reward—an urn on his widow’s mantelpiece. I walked out to meet her in the middle of Post Oak Drive.

“I’m so glad I caught you.” She fiddled with frilly lace at the neck of her lavender blouse. “A man on a Harley has been driving up and down the street. He stopped at your place twice. Rang the bell and then rode off.”

No doubt she was recalling the time when two thugs on another motorcycle attempted to gun me down. When she’d yelled to distract their murderous attention, they shot up the front of her house, scattering her husband all over the carpet.

I touched her shoulder. “Don’t worry, I’m not involved in any gang disputes at the moment. Not that I know of, anyway.”

Her smile turned impish. “That was an interesting day, wasn’t it? I just thought you should be aware someone was trying to contact you.”

“Thank you, Mrs. W. I’ll be on the lookout.”

After exchanging pleasantries, we parted. I mounted the steps to my front porch and paused to enjoy the welcoming aroma of tea roses my late mother planted. No evidence of a note on the door or in the mailbox. That meant the mysterious biker would probably return. I went inside and forgot the matter as I removed one of Paul’s casseroles from the fridge and got out a pan of rolls. I enjoyed their yeasty aroma almost as much as I liked their yeasty taste. Our household mantra was Paul Barton, freelance journalist, whips up gourmet meals; B. J. Vinson, former Marine and ex-cop turned confidential investigator, burns toast.

We planned to stay home tonight and watch an episode of a new gumshoe program on the tube called The Glades. Matt Passmore, the guy who played the detective, was a way-cool customer who Paul claimed should be my role model. I’d no sooner set the dishes to heating than a rumble on the street caught my attention. A moment later the doorbell rang.

Exclusive Excerpt

The fifth novel in Don Travis’s BJ Vinson Mystery Series was released by DSP Publications on January 22. Abaddon’s Locusts sheds light on a largely underreported problem with human sex trafficking.

Henry couldn’t quite hide his discomfort at shaking hand with a policeman—even a friendly one—the next morning when the two of us met Gene in the downtown stationhouse. I could see that my ex-partner was aware of the Navajo’s attitude and no doubt he would run Henry’s ID through the system the moment we left. I was wrong; he’d already done it.

“You always get in fights when you go to the Blue Spruce?” Gene asked.


“It’s a good place to find them. Bad place for staying out of them.”

“You got that right.”

The Blue Spruce was an Indian bar out on East Central near the fairgrounds. The place was notorious for its police calls. On the other side of the coin, it was a good spot for cops short on traffic tickets to make quota. 

“Your brother like to fight too? Or is he all sizzle and no steak?”

Henry’s face clouded for a moment. “He’s better at starting them and standing around watching everbody scrap, but he’s good backup when it’s needed.”

After that, Gene settled down and guided Henry through filling out a request to search for his brother’s car. There hadn’t been any results overnight, but none were expected, unless Jazz was moving around. Or someone was using his Jeep. There were a couple of Juan Gonzaleses in the system, but when I hauled out the photo of Jazz’s email contact, none of them matched.

Henry tapped his finger on the photograph. “Don’t you guys have some kinda gizmo where you can compare photos and make an ID?”

“A facial recognition program you mean?” Gene asked. “Scuttlebutt says it’s on its way, but we don’t have a system yet. The state boys have something, but I’d have to have probable cause for an arrest before I could even ask them to run a search.”

“My brother’s missing and he was talking to this guy, ain’t that enough?”

“No evidence this guy’s the cause of your brother’s disappearance. Hell, for all we know, he and his new friend are just out having a good time. But I think BJ’s right on this, Mr. Secatero. Your brother’s caught in the sex trade racket.

“Call me Henry, and just because my brother’s gay don’t mean he goes around selling his body. Never has. Never will.”

“Look, fella—” Gene pointed a stubby finger at Henry and nodded at me. “—don’t get your back up. I rode with this guy for three years, and we never had trouble over him being gay. But the human trafficking racket is getting to be big business. Some people figure there are more people in slavery today than before the Civil War. And I made some calls this morning and found out more kids than we’d like to admit disappear from Indian reservations. I grant you it’s mostly women and girls that get caught up in the sex part of it, but some boys and men do too.”

“Jazz wouldn’t stand still for that. He’d just walk out the door and go home.”

“Unless they’re holding something over him,” Gene said. “I’ll admit he doesn’t fit the pattern. He’s older than the norm and he’s male. Most are female somewhere around the ages of thirteen to fifteen or sixteen. Usually, the traffickers claim a debt’s gotta be paid, or threaten somebody—maybe a family member—with bodily harm or death. They’ve got lotsa ways of making victims toe the line.”

“Not Jazz. He’d go postal.”

“Some of them do, but they’re overpowered or done away with. So maybe he did fight them.”

Either the implications of that remark went over Henry’s head or he chose to ignore them. “I can’t think of a damned thing they could threaten my brother with. He knows his dad and me can take care of ourselves. His Uncle Riley will make sure his mother’s okay. There ain’t nobody else.”

Gene held up the photo of Juan I’d given him. I hadn’t shared the naked ones. “What about this guy. Maybe they’re threatening to take him out.”

“Jazz doesn’t even know him. Not really. Few months on the Internet is all. Why would he prostitute hisself for a stranger?”

“I can think of one scenario,” I said. “Drugs.”

Henry came out of his chair with a face like thunder. I tensed. “My brother don’t do drugs. Never has. Got in fights as a kid because he wouldn’t even try weed with some guys.”

Author Bio

Don Travis, a transplanted Okie living in Albuquerque, New Mexico, today finds his life pretty much dominated by writing. His social activities are devoted to teaching a free writing class at the North Domingo Multicultural Center, attendance at SouthWest Writers meetings, participation in a critique group, and lunches with fellow authors. In his spare time, he pens novels such as the Zozobra Incident, The Bisti Business, The City of Rocks, The Lovely Pines, and, of course, Abaddon’s Locusts. He considers his adopted state of New Mexico to be a protagonist in all his novels.

Personal links:


Author Bio

Don Travis is an Okie turned New Mexican. Each of his B. J. Vinson mystery novels features some region of his beautiful adopted state as prominently as it does his protagonist, a gay former Marine, ex-cop turned confidential investigator. Don never made it to the Marines (three years in the Army instead) and certainly didn’t join the Albuquerque Police Department.

He thought he was a paint artist for a while but ditched that for writing a few years back. A loner, he fulfills his social needs by attending SouthWest Writers meetings and teaching a free weekly writing class called Wordwrights at the North Domingo Multigenerational Center, an Albuquerque community center.

Author Website:
Author Facebook (Personal):
Author Twitter:

LOGO - Other Worlds Ink

No comments:

Post a Comment