Wayne Zurl grew up on Long Island and retired after twenty years with the Suffolk County Police Department, one of the largest municipal law enforcement agencies in New York and the nation. For thirteen of those years he served as a section commander supervising investigators. He is a graduate of SUNY, Empire State College and served on active duty in the US Army during the Vietnam War and later in the reserves. Zurl left New York to live in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee with his wife, Barbara.
Twenty-seven (27) of his Sam Jenkins novelette mysteries have been published as eBooks and many produced as audio books. Nine (9) of his full-length novels have been traditionally published.
Zurl has won Eric Hoffer and Indie Book Awards, and was named a finalist for a Montaigne Medal and First Horizon Book Award. He is an active member of International Thriller Writers.
For more information on Wayne’s Sam Jenkins mystery series see www.waynezurlbooks.net. You may read excerpts, reviews and endorsements, interviews, coming events, and see photos of the area where the stories take place.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
Good old-fashioned hard copies.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up on Long Island, just fifteen miles from New York City, and lived there for forty-six years. I spent twenty of those years with the Suffolk County Police Department. These factors makes me quite qualified and happy to write about the protagonist in my series of police mysteries, since he and I share many similarities in life. He's a former New York detective who is now employed as chief of police in a small city in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains of east Tennessee, coincidentally just down the road from where I now live.
Six police mysteries investigated by career cop Sam Jenkins. From an old robbery-homicide that made national news in 1968 to a grisly murder reminiscent of Alfred Hitchcock’s PSYCHO to a suspicious death in a nursing home, Jenkins and the officers of Prospect PD handle them in stride. Add to those, the murder of an aging movie star, the attempted murder of a retired detective and a bank robbery th
Sam Jenkins never thought about being a fish out of water during the twenty years he spent solving crimes in New York. But things change, and after retiring to Tennessee, he gets that feeling. In true Jenkins style, Sam turns common police practice on its ear to insure an innocent man doesn’t fall prey to an imperfect system and the guilty party receives appropriate justice.
Against his better judgment, Police Chief Sam Jenkins hires Dallas Finchum, nephew of local corrupt politicians.
Now, Finchum is accused of a rape that occurred when he attended college three years earlier.
Chief Sam Jenkins runs headlong into Tennessee’s faction of Korean organized crime when a mobster tries to shake down two former call girls attempting to establish a legitimate business. Soon, bodies begin piling up—all with a Korean connection—in Sam’s town of Prospect and nearby Knoxville.
Sam Jenkins thinks no good turn goes unpunished when the famous singer he’s assigned to protect decides it’s hate at first sight.
Famous country and western singer C.J. Profitt receives death threats from a group of rightwing zealots. Chief Sam Jenkins gets the job of keeping C.J. safe while she performs at a charity benefit.
TV reporter Rachel Williamson helps Chief Sam Jenkins with a classic fraud investigation. However, the case puts Rachel in jeopardy, and her abduction by a mentally disturbed man changes her life forever.
A stipulation of the Patriot Act gives Chief Sam Jenkins an easy job; investigate all the civilians working for the Prospect Police Department. But what looks like a routine chore to the gritty ex-New York detective, turns into a nightmare. Preliminary inquiries reveal that a middle-aged employee didn’t exist prior to 1975.