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The 13th Hour: Chaos by Richard Doetsch

The 13th Hour: Chaos by Richard Doetsch

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The 13th Hour: Chaos

The 13th Hour: ChaosA Mesmerizing Thriller Told in Reverse

On a warm Fourth of July in the quiet town of Byram Hills, Nick Quinn watches as his wife and daughter die in an unprecedented terrorist attack. Amid the disaster, Nick is approached by a dying friend who hands Nick an antique pocket watch.

Emotionally shattered and desperate, Nick takes the watch and is shocked to find himself propelled back in time to where he was an hour ago, before the attack on his town. Quickly stopping the course of events, his relief is shattered as life spirals in an even more tragic direction.

At the top of each hour, the watch sends Nick back two hours to live one hour again, a backwards march to relive each hour of his day. A twelve-hour journey providing precious but limited time to protect Julia and Katy and uncover the source of the ever growing threat.

But each time Nick thinks he’s solved the crime and secured the future, he uncovers new levels of deception, agony, and betrayal, ultimately revealing a far more sinister plot with unexpected players and grim, global consequences.

If Nick hasn’t set things right by the 13th hour, not only will his wife and daughter be lost forever to the chaos, but an even greater catastrophe will be unleashed upon the world.

Genre: Mystery Thriller
Published by: Permuted Press
Publication Date: May 3rd 2022
Number of Pages: 384
ISBN: 1637583060 (ISBN13: 9781637583067)
Series:A Nick Quinn Thriller; The 13th Hour Series

To purchase The 13th Hour: Chaos, click on any of the following links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books | Goodreads


Guest Post by Richard Doetsch

The Impossible

I hate that word. I don’t believe in it. Most say things are impossible because they couldn’t do it. I believe there’s always a way.

Sometimes we just have to knuckle under, work 25-hour days, push ourselves, take risks, bleed and believe to break through that impossible wall.

There are instances where we do the impossible because we didn’t realize the task was impossible, we weren’t aware of the constraints. Sometimes ignorance is bliss.

They said no one would ever break the 4-minute mile, they said we’d never go to the moon, they said the Red Sox would never win the World Series. There was that guy in high school everyone said would never get the girl, but he chased, pursued, sent flowers, listened, learned, wined and dined, never gave up, and now they are happily married for 30 years.

In my mind, impossible was just another word for challenge.

I was told I could never fly. I said I’d find a way. So, when I was 13, I started jumping off bridges, 75 feet into the reservoir. Then bungee jumping from a few hundred feet.  Sky diving from 14,000 feet came next. Huge adrenaline rush. 312 jumps. Amazing fun except when your chute doesn’t open and you only have a few seconds to figure it all out: Dump the first chute and release your reserve, hoping to prevent sudden impact death syndrome.

But all that stuff was just like Buzz Lightyear-falling with style. Not really flying.

Then I went up in the vomit comet, the plane they train the astronauts in. I went into Zero gravity. And I flew, weightless, back and forth, upside down, upside right, spinning and twirling for two hours. I flew. I did what everyone told me was impossible.

One day, I was looking for a particular book, one that encompassed everything I enjoyed, but I couldn’t find it. I realized the book I wanted to read was in my head.

Everyone talks about writing a book, lots of people try it, but never finish.

I thought writing a book would be impossible, but as mentioned, my adage was impossible is just another word for challenge.

I put my head down, shut out the noise and naysayers for a year, and did it. Took a bunch of rewrites to get it right but… I sold The Thieves of Heaven to Random House and discovered my passion.

Which brings me to The 13th Hour.

After turning in my third book, now at Simon and Shuster, I needed to find a new challenge, a writing challenge.

I had never seen a book that had gone backwards which got me thinking. My stories are usually heartfelt thrillers, wrapped in mystery, encased in fun. I had a story in mind, but I wondered if I could make it go backwards taking the readers on a unique, fun journey. And to challenge myself even more, I set the goal of writing it in 30 days.

I started at Chapter 12, 9:22 pm and dove in hard.

I was traveling in two narrative directions at the same time. I had to write about the past, which in my story’s context was the future both of which I was creating as I went.

I kept a detailed note pad of three different timelines: the book’s chapter timeline of going backwards; Nick’s journey both forward and reliving his day; and the natural timeline of the day in forward motion. Each was labeled by hour and chapter. It was so critical that everything be perfectly aligned because if one element was out of place the whole story would collapse.

It was like playing three layers of chess with one board upside down, one in a mirror, and one in reality. It was a challenge as I had to remember the past which hadn’t yet happened in my mind, yet it had informed the present, current chapter.

It sounds confusing to write, but all of that brain strain paid off in a clear, fun story line that, while being a bit mind-bending, is an easily flowing narrative.

I finished my challenge in 30 days, sold it to Simon and Schuster and New Line/Warner Brothers.

Recently, I wrote its sequel, The 13th Hour: Chaos. It took me longer. And this time the challenge was to make it more fun, thrilling, and original than the first one.

So, as I said, impossible is just another word for challenge and from challenging ourselves comes the fun and reward, be it an adrenaline rush or dreaming up and writing a new story.


Richard Doetsch —Author of The 13th Hour: Chaos

The 13th Hour: ChaosRichard Doetsch is the author of six international bestsellers published in twenty-eight countries, with several acquired for film and television.

He is an adrenaline junkie with a passion for kitesurfing, skydiving, SCUBA diving, triathlons, and defying gravity in Zero G aircraft.

He has served as CEO, president, and director in the real-estate industry, managing, creating, and preserving more than 50,000 units of affordable housing with an emphasis on social and community programs.

He is married to his childhood sweetheart, Virginia, who is the impetus and inspiration behind everything he writes.

To learn more about Richard, click on any of the following links:, Goodreads, BookBub, Instagram – @richarddoetsch, Twitter – @richarddoetschFacebook – @richarddoetsch

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The 13th Hour: Chaos

09/06 Interview @ I Read What You Write
09/07 Review @ Wall-to-wall Books
09/08 Review @ Cheryls Book Nook
09/10 Review @ The World As I See It
09/11 Review @ Book Reviews From an Avid Reader
09/13 Review @ Urban Book Reviews
09/14 Review @ read_betweenthecovers
09/15 Review @ Avonna Loves Genres
09/16 Review @ Book Corner News and Reviews
09/17 Guest post @ Nesies Place
09/19 Review @ Novels Alive
09/21 Review @ Lynchburg Reads
09/21 Showcase @ The Authors Harbor
09/22 Review @ rozierreadsandwine
09/223 Showcase @ Books, Ramblings, and Tea
09/27 Review @ I Read What You Write
09/28 Guest post @ The Mystery of Writing
09/29 Review @ Celticladys Reviews

Elena Taylor/Elena Hartwell

All We Buried, available now in print, e-book, and audio.

Silver Falchion Award Finalist, Best Investigator 2020

Foreword INDIE Award Finalist, Best Mystery 2020



The Foundation of Plot, a Wait, Wait, Don’t Query (Yet!) guidebook.

Elena Hartwell

Author and developmental editor.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Wendy B

    Great guest post!
    I’ve always wanted to try hang gliding.
    Skydiving? Possibly. Bungee jumping? Never! I think it’s the whole head first thing.

    This was a fantastic book!

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