Detective Jared McNeil talks about his role in Nancy C. Weeks’s romantic suspense, IN THE SHADOW OF EVIL from Crimson Romance:

M. J: [I wish I had a photo of Jared McNeil I could share, but he’s camera shy. Here is a brief description for you to envision as you read his interview.
Lieutenant Jared McNeil carries himself like a soldier, stands proud with muscular shoulders, chest, and a lean waist. He is a good six foot two inches tall and has the most gorgeous, piercing cobalt blue eyes and short, wavy brown hair. Today, he’s wearing a dark, navy blue sports coat with a pair of black denim jeans. He’s the kind of man that doesn’t like to draw attention to himself. Who can’t check this guy out?]

M. J.: Thank you for being here on my blog today, Detective McNeil. You don’t look very comfortable. Is there anything I can do to make this easier on you? 

Jared: Please call me Jared. [He runs a hand through his hair then wipes his palm on his slacks.] I’m not comfortable talking about myself or the job. But, Nancy and Jennie asked me to be here so here I am.

M.J.: I promise to make this as painless as possible. If you don’t feel comfortable with a question, just let me know and I’ll move on. [He nods but I can tell he doesn’t believe me.] So, in In the Shadow of Evil, you play the hero, right?

Jared: Yes, but if there is a hero to this story it’s Jennie, not me. 

M.J.: Would you like to explain that statement? I know who Jennie is but our readers may not. Who is Jennie to you?

Jared: Jennie McKenzie McNeil is the bravest woman I have ever known. She is my hero― my everything. You might refer to her as my love interest. I can tell you right now, that label doesn’t even come close to doing Jennie justice.

M.J.: I agree with you, Jared. Jennie McKenzie is an amazing woman. But before we get to her, can you tell us a little about yourself.

Jared: I’m thirty-one years old and a detective with the Maryland’s Special Crime Unit.

M.J.: (Smiling) And…

Jared: What do you want to know about me?

M.J.: Why don’t you tell us about your family?

Jared: [A low groan escapes from the back of his throat] 

I’m the oldest son of a large family. My father is Thomas McNeil and he’s a retired police detective. My mom, Mary, is a surgeon, but these days, she only works part-time. I have a twin brother named Noah. Most people can’t tell us apart and we have spent a lifetime making use of that little advantage. Mac, or Luke McNeil is the next sibling and he lives in Austin, Texas. Mac is a special agent for the FBI as is my youngest brother, Jason. Jason’s wife, Sarah now teaches physics at the University of Texas when she is not working as a consultant to the FBI. She’s kind of this math genius. My sister, Emma is Jason’s twin. She is married to Jason’s childhood best friend, Aiden and has two six year old twin boys, David and Ethan.

M.J.: I have heard how similar you and Noah are to each other. Has Jennie ever had trouble telling you apart? Has she ever kissed the wrong brother?

Jared: HELL NO! [He squirms a little in his seat] Sorry. Jennie can tell me apart from Noah. In fact, she doesn’t think Noah and I look anything alike.

M.J: So lets talk about Jennie. How did you two meet?

Jared: [His eyes darken from a deep blue to almost black and he tenses up.] 

I met Jennie while on my first undercover assignment. I was working my way up the chain in Elías Mendoza’s organization. She was only sixteen at the time. Her foster brother, Nick and her were living with Mendoza.

M.J: How in the world did Jennie come to live with a man like Mendoza?

Jared: I really can’t go into that. Nancy asked me not to give out any spoilers from In the Shadow of Evil. Your readers will have to read that part of the story which I think is in chapter one. What I can tell you is that it was my job to not only gather information about Mendoza, but to protect Jennie and Nick. I failed miserably and will never forgive myself for underestimating Mendoza.

M.J: You’re being too hard on yourself, Jared. I know what incident you are not talking about and that was not your fault. [I raise my hand to keep him from arguing with me] Can you talk about Mendoza?

Jared: The only thing I’m willing to say about that basta … Elías Mendoza is that I hate him with every fiber of my being. He will never come near Jennie again. 

M.J: I think we need to return this interview to something a little more pleasant. Tell us how you see Jennie.

Jared: [His eyes lit up and his tense features relax instantly] What do your readers want to know about my wife? She told me not to hold back. 

M.J: That was very kind of her. [Ladies and gents, the tough Jared McNeil is actually blushing] 

Jared: Jennie is my life, my heart. I’m nothing without her. [His focus is on the wall above me] 
Jennie isn’t like anyone I have ever met. She is more than just beautiful and sexy as hell. Her strength comes from a spiritual source deep within her. She is an amazing teacher too. I’ve seen her in action and her fifth grade students are just damn lucky to have her. I guess you just have to meet her for yourself to know what I’m talking about.

M.J.: You and Jennie really had a hard time finding your way to each other. Why?

Jared: I’m just stupid like that. I was waiting for everything to be just right. I almost lost her. 

M.J: You had a very unusual wedding? Would you tell us about it?

Jared: Nancy would kill me if I told you about our wedding. But what I can tell you is that it was an experience I will never forget. The evening Jennie and I married changed how I look at the world and how I see myself. There are no words to explain what happen, but the man I was when I walked into St. Luke’s wasn’t the man who walked out.

M.J: Can you elaborate a little on what changed you so dramatically?

Jared: When you are on the job, you see the worst mankind has to offer. Your days are surrounded by men and women like Mendoza and it affects you, warps your soul until you can see only the evil that exist. That all changed the evening I married Jennie McKenzie. [His gaze drops to his feet. He is silent for a long time before he faces me again.] There are mysteries in life that can’t be explained. What happened in the church… all I can say is that my life has been altered for the better because I was smart enough to fall madly in love with Jennifer Marie McKenzie. 

M.J: I understand that Jennie is also the youth choir director for St. Luke’s Catholic Church. She’s a busy woman. How do you two find time together with such demanding jobs?

Jared: Now M.J., you should know from reading In the Shadow of Evil that nothing gets in my way when I want to be with Jennie. 

M.J: [Ladies and gents, there is no way I can describe the hungry look in Jared’s eyes, but I almost swallowed my tongue. LOL] 
How do you like having a priest as Jennie’s best friend? Do you find yourself watching what you say in front of Father Anthony? 

Jared: Father Anthony is a great guy. As for watching what I say in front of him, it just isn’t necessary. The man was a Special Forces soldier for years before entering the priesthood. There isn’t anything he hasn’t said, done or heard before.

M.J.: Would you mind telling us a little about him? Father Anthony sounds like a fascinating person.

Jared: I think if you want to know Father Anthony’s story, you are going to have to invite him on your blog. His story is his to tell.

M.J.: I guess that’s fair. I see you glancing at your watch. I know we are running out of time so just one more question.

Jared: Ask away.

M.J.: You and Jennie are now married, living your happy-ever-after. What’s next for the two of you?

Jared: According to Jennie’s dear friend and landlord, Mrs. Cunningham, we can expect babies, lots of babies. And before you ask, I can’t wait to hold the children Jennie gives me in my arms. [He stands and holds out his hand.] M.J., it was a pleasure to meet you. Thanks for having me here today. I have left a short excerpt for your readers to enjoy. I hope they enjoy our story.


Elías Mendoza’s personal vendetta against the McKenzie family rests on Jennie’s shoulders. As she cradles the bullet ridden body of her ten-year old student, she knows Mendoza is responsible. Quinton’s death is a message. Jennie’s life belongs to only Mendoza. But she has her own message. No one else dies. Her life means nothing as long as Mendoza is free.

Jared McNeil has spent ten years with Maryland’s Special Crime Unit and very little rattles him. When the haunted teenager he once tried to protect walks into his precinct now a beautiful woman, he wants nothing more than to wrap her in his arms and never let her go. But he soon realizes she is there only to settle her debts before she goes after his nemesis, Mendoza. Jared’s vow to stay away from Jennie until the task force destroys Mendoza now means nothing.
What Jared and Jennie don't understand is there are forces at play greater than the evil shadowing them, but time is running out. United, they can do anything. Alone, they will fail.

An excerpt from IN THE SHADOW OF EVIL that Jared brought with him. Enjoy!

“The shooter just left Jennie . . .” 

Jared raised his hand. He didn’t need Noah’s words for his mind to conjured the image of a man lying on top of her with a knife, carving thin slices across her beautiful throat like it was butter. The fury grew until his breathing came in short, uneven breaths. 

He felt Noah’s hand resting on his shoulder and he could hear Jennie speaking softly to Emma behind the curtain. Her voice calmed him. Turning, he shoved the camera into Noah’s hands and yanked up a corner of the curtain. He had to see her, touch her, feel her. Before Emma could protest, he drew Jennie half dressed into his arms, plastering her body up against his. 

Jennie just clung to him saying, “I’m okay, Jared,” over and over again. 

No one was ever going to hurt her again. “Please give us a minute,” he said to Emma without looking up at her. He lifted Jennie then eased down on the bed, drawing her into his lap. Jennie’s arms circled his shoulders and pulled him tight against her. 

“Jared, what’s wrong? What did Noah say to you?”

A hurt like he never experienced clogged his throat as a tear slid down his face. He drew her to him, cradling her head against his chest. She was now safe, but it didn’t ease the guilt that churned in the pit of his stomach. He raised his head and ran his finger over the bandage. “I should have stopped that bastard. He never should have had a chance to go after you.” 

“Jared, don’t,” Jennie said as she wiped the tear with her thumb. Her hand went to his cheek. “Please don’t do this to yourself.”

Resting his head on her forehead, he took in a deep, shaky breath. “God, Jennie, why don’t you hate me?” 

“I could never hate you.”

It took a long time for him to form the words. “You better be ready for me in your life, Jennie because I’m not leaving you alone until this nightmare is over—maybe never again.”
The corners of her mouth curled up in a smile as she traced her finger along his hairline. “Now why doesn’t that sound like a threat?” 

“I’m serious, Jennie.”

Her eyes bore into him. “Bring it, big guy. I’m damn tired of being alone.” 


Nancy C. Weeks has loved happy-ever-after romances since she was in her early teens. While still in college, she met and married her hero and spent the next several years honeymooning and working overseas. Today, she lives in suburban Maryland with her husband of more than thirty years. Her two children are in college and she spends her days out on her deck writing as the local bird population keeps her company. She loves to hear from her readers.

Link where you can find out more about Nancy C. Weeks:





AMAZON: http://amzn.to/1fgBXl7

BARNES AND NOBLE: http://bit.ly/17hjfco

CRIMSON ROMANCE: http://www.crimsonromance.com/


AMAZON: http://amzn.to/16ZTUl3

BARNES AND NOBLE: http://bit.ly/16GHb6I

iTUNES: http://bit.ly/17JKTvi

CRIMSON ROMANCE:: http://www.crimsonromance.com/


  1. Good morning, Jared and Nancy! Thank you for joining us today.

  2. Good morning, Jared and Nancy! Thank you for joining us today.

  3. Hi M.J.
    Good morning! It is wonderful to be here with you on your amazing blog. I just love the spotlights. This is the first time I ever invited one of my characters along for an interview. Jared wanted me to thank for making this easy on him. He was a little nervous, but I think he did a great job. He really appears a little unyielding on the surface, but he's the sweetest man. You should see him with Jennie. Talk about swallowing your tongue...those two are seriously hot for each other. If any of your readers have any questions for him, I'm sure I can get him to check back in. In the meantime, you can ask me anything. Thanks for having us!
    Nancy C. Weeks

  4. Hi there MJ and Nancy. I just want to vouch for Nancy's book, In The Shadow of Greed - she's a fabulous writer and spins a fantastic story. Looking forward to reading In The Shadow of Evil too.

    1. Thanks for stopping in, Rowena! It's good to hear from you!

    2. Hi Rowena!
      That is the sweetest thing to say. Thanks so much.

  5. I love the McNeil brothers! This series is fabulous! Love the suspense and the paranormal aspects to each book.

    Jared, is Noah single? How does he feel about a slightly older woman:).

    1. Robyn, you crack me up! There's something so wonderful about a family with a slew of cute men!

    2. Robyn,
      Noah loves all women! The problem will be making him choose just one. But my brother isn't a complete idiot. There is someone fairly close to him that just might make his head spin. If she doesn't, her kids sure will. Stay tune ... Nancy has only began to work on Noah.

  6. I can't wait to read the second book in this series. I loved the heroine in the first novel, Dr. Sarah Tu, and I look forward to knowing more about Jennie and Jared. Much continued success, Nancy!

    1. Thanks for coming over to join us, Deborah! Yes, if only we had more time to read. I should sharpen my editing tools and become an editor. That way I'd get paid to read a bunch of great writers! Have a good rest of your evening and Finally Friday!

    2. Hi Deborah!
      Thanks so much for dropping by to meet Jared. He and Jennie are really special to me.


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