Human Resources - a thriller by Geoffrey Neil  


Author warning:

I know you're scared. What if you buy HR and can't finish it because it's too intense? Or maybe you discover that it stinks to high heaven? Either way you're out the cost of a latte at one of those fancy coffee shops you like, right? Relax. Scan the reviews. Use Amazon's Look Inside feature to read a fat sample. If that doesn't boost your confidence, then just go enjoy the latte. I won't be mad. I won't even know--unless we bump into each other at the supermarket and your eyes get all shifty.



Some things are worse than getting fired! Beautiful business consultant, Morana Mahker, swoops in to rescue Innovative Menu Covers, Inc. from certain financial disaster. She cancels layoffs and dazzles everyone with her killer looks and corporate savvy--everyone except Lonnie Raiford. Having worked years to establish a host of questionable perks for himself, Lonnie becomes furious when Morana tampers with his system. His concern is eclipsed when he and the other staff soon notice the over-the-top attention and affection Morana showers on Hugh Berish, Lonnie's coworker and best friend.

As curiosity mounts about Morana's intentions for Hugh, Lonnie embarks on a frantic investigation that uncovers Morana's true identity and plans that are more terrifying than anyone at the company could have imagined. In a true test of friendship, Lonnie resorts to extreme measures in a desperate attempt to save Hugh from Morana's horrific goal.


More info:

What motivated me to write Human Resources? The short answer is fear. I grew up in a rural community in upstate New York where many fine people raise or hunt their meat. I'm not against this and would embrace the lifestyle if I still lived there. When I was a boy, my father often took me to visit townsfolk who owned all sorts of farm animals. The people fed, nurtured and even assigned affectionate nicknames to the animals. While stroking feathers or fur they'd say in baby-talk, "What a love, oh yes you are, you're such a cutie!" Inevitably, "Clucky" or "Bossy" soon sat on the dinner table as a drumstick or veal chop. These same people would look at me, pinch my 5-year-old cheek and tell my dad, "Oh he is soooo cute! I want to take him home with me!" The idea of going home with them terrified me. I had nightmares. The paradox of the loving care during preparation for slaughter confused me. I didn't expect people to be cruel to an animal during its life, but why be so incredibly affectionate if...? My young brain could not reconcile the pampered journey with the harsh destination.

Fast forward to adulthood and I learned about Kobe beef and its processing. The daily massage, beer, music and other pampering given to cattle--all for an end that will be anything but luxurious for the animal. This dissonant behavior is the premise of Human Resources. The story is a glimpse into my childhood nightmare. You can thank me later.

I decided to write a book that provides a satisfying scare without gore. The story's most disturbing elements are only implied. I wanted to leverage the power of imagination to help readers freak themselves out. If I succeeded, your imagination will run with it, causing worry the way thriller readers love to worry, until the story's end.

Human Resources is not a sequel, but does feature one character, Morana Mahker, carried over from Dire Means. While her role in Human Resources is different, her character, the tools of her trade and how she uses them is consistent. The books can be read in any order.

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