Meet Luke Murphy

Why did I write DEAD MAN’S HAND?

I’ve always had a passion for books, which stems from a family of avid readers.

My father and sisters read everything from novels to biographies and, although my mother died when I was young (cancer), my memories of her include a stack of Danielle Steele novels on her bedside table.
There is not a single moment when the idea for DEAD MAN’S HAND came to life, but circumstances over the years that led to this story: trips to Vegas, hockey injuries, love of football and gambling. Everything I’ve done in my life, every job I’ve held, every book I’ve read somehow contributed to my novel.

I’ve been fortunate to have obtained a number of jobs in different fields: professional hockey player, sports columnist, radio journalist—all have played a part in the conception of DEAD MAN’S HAND.

I’ve been a fan of thrillers since I was a kid…back to the Hardy Boys. I’ve been reading this genre for decades, so it only made sense that I write what I love.

I love Las Vegas! But for the glitz and glamour that is Vegas, I wanted to explore the underworld, of that with which people aren’t aware. My frequent visits proved that Vegas has a mystique with unlimited potential—the perfect backdrop for my story.

My protagonist, Calvin Watters, is not a ‘stereotypical’ good guy—a sadistically violent African-American debt-collector who was once a rising football star.
With the sports connection similar to my own, I could relate to Calvin’s attitude on overcoming setbacks after serious injury.

DEAD MAN’S HAND became real from mixing the events of my life, taking advantage of experts in their field and adding my wild imagination.

DEAD MAN’S HAND, although it has an autobiographical element, suggests how far (to Las Vegas’ underworld) the imagination can take readers and a novelist. My goal was to please anyone who loves thrillers, sports, or a walk on the wilder side of Vegas.