PERSONAL: Born in NY; married; wife’s name Jodi; children: Melanie, Matthew, Anthony, Isabella. Education: Graduate of Weber State University. Hobbies and other interests: Swimming, scuba diving, travel, movies, reading, family.
Comes a Horseman (novel), WestBow Press (Nashville, TN), 2005.
Germ (novel), WestBow Press (Nashville, TN), 2006.
Deadfall (novel), WestBow Press (Nashville, TN), 2007.
Contributor to books, including Thriller, Mira Books (Ontario, Canada), 2006. Contributor to periodicals, including Travel & Leisure, Consumer’s Digest, Reader’s Digest, Modern Bride, Chief Executive, and the Arizona Daily Star; celebrity interviewer and author of screenplays. New Man magazine, contributing editor.
ADAPTATIONS: Movie rights to Comes a Horseman were purchased by Mace Neufeld. Movie and video game rights to Germ were purchased by Red Eagle Entertainment.
SIDELIGHTS: Early in his career, Robert Liparulo wrote screenplays and reviewed celebrities, including rock-and-roll stars like Bruce Springsteen. He then began writing action-adventure thrillers. Responding to a question regarding his faith and how it affects his writing posed by an interviewer for Christian Fandom online, he responded: “Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. Without Him, we’d all be on a hell-bound train. My gifts and skills as a writer come from Him. They are not for me or my own benefit, but given to me to bless others. I want to honor Him by doing the best job I can do. I trust that He is in everything I do, even if I’m not conscious about ‘putting’ Him there.” Liparulo doesn’t shy away from the darker side of mankind, however. In an interview with Robin Parrish of Infuze online, he said: “I don’t mind depicting sin in fiction, because as long as it’s depicted as a problem, as long as that sin does what sin does. As long as it brings you down or attracts more sin. Paint it for what it is; don’t glorify it. But I don’t mind seeing real sin depicted in fiction.”
Liparulo’s Comes a Horseman, was described by Christianity Today reviewer Cindy Crosby, as being a “chilling debut,” part The DaVinci Code, part “Left Behind,” and part Tom Clancy thriller. Luco Scaramuzzi supposes himself to be the long-promised antichrist and will be supported by the Watchers, who have been awaiting his arrival, if he can prove that he is. Federal agent Brady Moore is recovering from the death of his wife, and agent Alicia Wagner, who has feelings for him, wisely lets him heal. They are investigating a series of beheadings of people who seem to have no connection with each other. In reviewing the novel for Bookreporter.com, Joe Hartlaub wrote: “Liparulo puts the reader right in the room during the investigation of one of these murders, and it’s not a pretty sight..... His characters, particularly Moore, are unforgettable, and his villains are everything that bad guys should, and shouldn’t, be.”
Germ is a thriller in which an Ebola virus has been programmed to seek out and destroy specific targets by identifying their DNA. The story opens with Despesorio Vero, lab assistant to scientist Karl Litt, watching a patient die as his organs liquefy. Time passes and Despesorio and agent Goodwin Donnelly are killed by assassin Atropos, who is eliminating everyone connected to the investigation. Before thousands are killed, special agent Julia Matheson must find the source of the virus, with the help of a memory chip and clue left behind by Goodwin, who was her partner. The creator of the virus is revealed, as well as the origins of the research begun in Germany during World War II.
A Publishers Weekly contributor wrote: “Plenty of technical details ... help differentiate this story from the run-of-the-mill thriller.” W. Terry Whalin reviewed Germ for FaithfulReader.com, concluding that “Liparulo has crafted a multi-strand page turner and a highly recommended thriller.”
Liparulo told CA: “I started writing poems when I was about eight. I went door to door selling the poems for pennies. My neighbors were very kind. I started a novel when I was thirteen and published my first article in a newspaper when I was fourteen. I started writing short stories for magazines, and when that market dried up, switched to nonfiction articles— celebrity profiles, movie and book reviews, investigative pieces. Right after college, I edited an entertainment magazine in Colorado, so I got a chance to hang out backstage and interview a lot of rock’n’roll greats: Bruce Springsteen, The Who, Chicago, etc. I wrote several screenplays, about half of which sold, but never got off the ground.
“I lean toward horror, psychological suspense, and action, so I think the authors who really shaped the way I approach writing and my writing style are: Richard Matheson—his I Am Legend shocked me, in a good way, when I read it at age eleven. It showed me how powerful stories can be. Stephen King’s The Stand and Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings showed me that there are no limits to the size and scope and majesty of novels, and Peter Straub’s Ghost Story proved that ‘little’ stories can be ‘big.’ Thomas Perry’s The Butcher’s Boy helped me fine-tune what I liked about thrillers and taught me about irony. David Morrell’s Testament introduced me to the horror that can spin off of real life. James Dickey’s Deliverance is about as perfect a novel as can be written. I loved the literary classics, as well:The Turn of the Screw, The House of the Seven Gables, Moby Dick, and The Last of the Mohicans. As diverse as this list seems, really they primarily fall into two genres: action or suspense, and that’s what I write.
“My advice to writers: 1. To paraphrase Winston Churchill: ‘Never, never, never give up.’ 2. Develop your own style. Don’t try to mimic someone else’s and don’t let an editor mess with it. At the end of the day, style is really all you bring to the table. Stories and plots are a dime a dozen. Style is what makes you different from all the other writers out there. 3. Understand that the craft of writing is only half of what it takes to be a published author. The other half is working with editors, meeting deadlines, marketing your books and yourself, and all that other stuff that feels like garbage because it’s not writing.”
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES
Christianity Today, November, 2005, Cindy Crosby, review of Comes a Horseman, p. 100.
Gazette Telegraph, December 9, 2006, Paul Asay, “Label Breaker.”
Publishers Weekly, September 5, 2005, review of Comes a Horseman, p. 35; September 25, 2006, review of Germ, p. 47.
Bookreporter.com, http://www.bookreporter.com/ (December 16, 2006), Joe Hartlaub, review of Comes a Horseman.
Christian Fandom, http://www.swcp.com/christianfandom/oli-rl.html/ (December 17, 2006), “Interview: Robert Liparulo.”
Comes a Horseman Web site, http://www.comesahorsemanbook.com (December 17, 2006).
FaithfulReader.com, http://www.faithfulreader.com/ (December 17, 2006), W. Terry Whalin, review of Germ.
Infuze, http://www.infuzemagazine.com/ (December 17, 2006), Robin Parrish, author interview.
Robert Liparulo Home Page, http://www.robertliparulo.com (December 17, 2006).
Who Dunnit, http://www.who-dunnit.com/ (December 17, 2006), Alan Paul Curtis, review of Comes a Horseman.