by Juanita Kees
In Book 1 of the Tag Raiders Series, Under the Hood, teenage gang leader, Tiny Watts can’t afford to be caught telling his story in graffiti on walls—drug ring leaders Gino Bennetti and Nic Albero will kill him. Instead, Tiny keeps a diary filled with graffiti sketches that contain clues to the drops, ringleaders and their crimes. In book 2, Under Cover of Dark, deciphering his diary becomes a job for the sexy Detective Mark Johnson when Tiny is murdered and the case becomes a whole lot more complicated.
Whatever it is your hero or heroine want to hide, here are 5 ways to disguise their saucy secret:
Homer Simpson fans might recall the episode where Homer gets a job breaking up couples, and Lisa becomes an expert crossword puzzle solver, but Homer bets against her in a competition and she ‘divorces’ him as her father. Homer commissions Merl Reagle and Will Shortz to create a special puzzle for the New York Times, with his apology to Lisa hidden in the clues and solution.
I love cryptology! Plain text is transformed to a code that needs a special key to decipher it—a bit like the dots and dashes of Morse code. My favourite code is the Idiot code (I know, right?), similar to hand signals used by armies in the field.
In Book 3, Under his Protection (my current WIP), our fourth Tag Raiders member, Connor, receives a coded message from another gang member—Lurk’s come a gutser. Yobbo’s been on the turps and carked it. No hope man. We’re toast. Plain Text: the deal is off. Gino Bennetti is dead and we’re next.
Here’s a way to get tongues twisting! Quite simply words that are spelled or sound the same, only backwards, example ‘cheat’ and ‘teach’ or ‘kiss’ and ‘sick’.
Cheat em sick … Mmmm, okay then.
Whip out the old CB Radio and take to the airwaves. Breaker! Breaker! No-one did it better than Chuck Norris (!) although just recently Formula One Racing banned teams from sending their drivers coded messages through the use of radio communications at the Singapore Grand Prix.
This is my favourite art form and a great way to disguise a saucy message (not that I can draw at all!) Thanks to technology, I designed this banner for the release of Under Cover of Dark. Those who have read The Tag Raiders series might recognize some of the clues hidden in the picture.
When Mark Johnson delves deeper into his investigation into the murder of Tiny Watts, and the involvement of a teenage gang with sleazy lawyer Gino Bennetti and his drug world ties, the last thing he expects is to be interviewing Gino’s widow, a woman in a world of trouble.
When her husband is shot and killed, it is both a relief and a disaster. Lily has her son to protect and secrets that run deeper than the scars she bears. Mark Johnson is the last person she wants uncovering those secrets, especially the truth about her son Luke’s involvement in Tiny Watts’s murder.
As the investigation continues and Lily’s wounds begin to heal, she finds the detective easy to trust and the friendship between them blossoms into more. But the secret Lily holds places everyone in very real danger. When it is finally revealed, Lily will lose everything: her son, the man she’s grown to love, her freedom and her life.