Friday, June 19, 2015

Michael J. Bowler - Spinner - Review and Giveaway



About the Book

Fifteen-year-old Alex is a “spinner.” His friends are “dummies.” Two clandestine groups of humans want his power. And an ancient evil is stalking him. If people weren’t being murdered, Alex might laugh at how his life turned into a horror movie overnight. In a wheelchair since birth, his freakish ability has gotten him kicked out of ten foster homes since the age of four. Now saddled with a sadistic housemother who uses his spinning to heal the kids she physically abuses, Alex and his misfit group of learning disabled classmates are the only ones who can solve the mystery of his birth before more people meet a gruesome end. They need to find out who murdered their beloved teacher, and why the hot young substitute acts like she’s flirting with them. Then there’s the mysterious medallion that seems to have unleashed something malevolent, and an ancient prophecy suggesting Alex has the power to destroy humanity. The boys break into homes, dig up graves, elude kidnappers, fight for their lives against feral cats, and ultimately confront an evil as old as humankind. Friendships are tested, secrets uncovered, love spoken, and destiny revealed. The kid who’s always been a loner will finally learn the value of friends, family, and loyalty. If he survives…


My Review

Freak. Idiot. Loser.

These are just some of the hurtful names that are hurled at Alex and his Special Ed classmates. They're the misfits of Mark Twain High, the ones no one wants to be seen with. But Alex has it especially hard because he's also in a wheelchair, and the popular cheerleaders have no problem adding another insult to the list.

Cripple.

Author Michael J. Bowler admits in the foreword to SPINNER that he has a special place in his heart for those with disabilities because he, too, suffers with a hearing impairment and for years he was in charge of students just like Alex and his friends as a teacher in the public school system. He knows what makes these kids tick based on his own personal experiences, and from observing what other kids go through. He pens a full and comprehensive outlook from both sides of the issue, a feat that really brings his characters to life.

He portrays Special Ed teenagers not as victims but as heroes. They don't need anyone to fight their battles for them. They stand up for themselves. The deck is certainly stacked against them, but they prevail by working together and believing in each other. And they have a lot of issues they need to combat—limited language processing skills, attention deficit disorder, the inability to stop talking. They can't read well enough to find a name on a tombstone or look up someone's address in the phone book. They can't understand multi-syllabic words that authority figures from cops to priests use with ease. But they have the know-how to drive a truck through a high speed chase and the brute strength to climb up an apartment balcony. They learn to play to their strengths instead of focusing on their weaknesses.

And that's a good thing because in SPINNER they're embroiled in a centuries-old mystery, that nobody really understands. All they know is that Alex has been granted some kind of mystical power that allows him to heal people, and drive away negative emotions. In the book's afterword, Bowler admits that Alex is the character who's most like him because of their shared empath abilities. Alex feels what others feel, and he hates seeing people suffer. But he's able to fix everyone except himself. He gets really down about being in a wheelchair, and that's when his reckless side emerges, leading to all sorts of trouble.

Relating so easily to people isn't necessarily a bad thing. It just becomes overwhelming when Alex is unsure how to channel it. Some people want him dead. Others want to use him for what they can get out of him. Alex doesn't know where to turn, but he trusts his fellow classmates. Society dubs them as intellectually challenged, but to him they're the bravest guys he knows. They may be afraid to follow him into danger, but when they're put to the test, they come through time and time again.

Alex is proud to call them his friends, or as Bowler lovingly puts it, "losers touched by God."

***

Spinner can be pre-purchased at:
Amazon

Format/Price: $6.99 ebook
Genre: Horror, Young Adult
Pages: 463
Release: August 5, 2015
Publisher: YoungDudes Publishing
ISBN: 9780994667519
Click to add to your Goodreads list.


About the Author

Michael J. Bowler is an award-winning author of eight novels—A Boy and His Dragon, A Matter of Time (Silver Medalist from Reader’s Favorite), and The Knight Cycle, comprised of five books: Children of the Knight (Gold Award Winner in the Wishing Shelf Book Awards), Running Through A Dark Place (Bronze Award Winner in the Wishing Shelf Book Awards), There Is No Fear, And The Children Shall Lead, Once Upon A Time In America, and Spinner.

His horror screenplay, “Healer,” was a Semi-Finalist, and his urban fantasy script, “Like A Hero,” was a Finalist in the Shriekfest Film Festival and Screenplay Competition.

He grew up in San Rafael, California, and majored in English and Theatre at Santa Clara University. He went on to earn a master’s in film production from Loyola Marymount University, a teaching credential in English from LMU, and another master's in Special Education from Cal State University Dominguez Hills.

He partnered with two friends as producer, writer, and/or director on several ultra-low-budget horror films, including “Fatal Images,” “Club Dead,” and “Things II,” the reviews of which are much more fun than the actual movies.

He taught high school in Hawthorne, California for twenty-five years, both in general education and to students with learning disabilities, in subjects ranging from English and Strength Training to Algebra, Biology, and Yearbook. He has also been a volunteer Big Brother to eight different boys with the Catholic Big Brothers Big Sisters program and a thirty-year volunteer within the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles.

He has been honored as Probation Volunteer of the Year, YMCA Volunteer of the Year, California Big Brother of the Year, and 2000 National Big Brother of the Year. The “National” honor allowed him and three of his Little Brothers to visit the White House and meet the president in the Oval Office.

He is currently outlining a sequel to Spinner.

His goal as a YA author is for teens to experience empowerment and hope; to see themselves in his diverse characters; to read about kids who face real-life challenges; and to see how kids like them can remain decent people in an indecent world.

Links to connect with Michael:
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Blog
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Monday, June 1, 2015

Jerome Charyn - Bitter Bronx - Review and Giveaway



About the Book

Brooklyn is dead. Long live the Bronx! In Bitter Bronx, Jerome Charyn returns to his roots and leads the literary renaissance of an oft-overlooked borough in this surprising new collection.

In Bitter Bronx, one of our most gifted and original novelists depicts a world before and after modern urban renewal destroyed the gritty sanctity of a land made famous by Ruth, Gehrig, and Joltin' Joe.

Bitter Bronx is suffused with the texture and nostalgia of a lost time and place, combining a keen eye for detail with Jerome Charyn's lived experience. These stories are informed by a childhood growing up near that middle-class mecca, the Grand Concourse; falling in love with three voluptuous librarians at a public library in the Lower Depths of the South Bronx; and eating at Mafia-owned restaurants along Arthur Avenue's restaurant row, amid a "land of deprivation…where fathers trundled home…with a monumental sadness on their shoulders."

In "Lorelei," a lonely hearts grifter returns home and finds his childhood sweetheart still living in the same apartment house on the Concourse; in "Archy and Mehitabel" a high school romance blossoms around a newspaper comic strip; in "Major Leaguer" a former New York Yankee confronts both a gang of drug dealers and the wreckage that Robert Moses wrought in his old neighborhood; and in three interconnected stories—"Silk & Silk," "Little Sister," and "Marla"—Marla Silk, a successful Manhattan attorney, discovers her father's past in the Bronx and a mysterious younger sister who was hidden from her, kept in a fancy rest home near the Botanical Garden. In these stories and others, the past and present tumble together in Charyn's singular and distinctly "New York prose, street-smart, sly, and full of lurches" (John Leonard, New York Times).

Throughout it all looms the "master builder" Robert Moses, a man who believed he could "save" the Bronx by building a highway through it, dynamiting whole neighborhoods in the process. Bitter Bronx stands as both a fictional eulogy for the people and places paved over by Moses' expressway and an affirmation of Charyn's "brilliant imagination" (Elizabeth Taylor, Chicago Tribune).


My Review

The simplicity of Jerome Charyn's sentence structure carries with it so much power. You can tell he chooses the words he wants in a painstaking fashion in order to convey the emotion he's after.

How does he conjure the horror of a homeless shelter?

"It was like living in an ocean of unwashed feet."

Not many writers are capable of doing that. It's something only the greats are known for. The first name that comes to mind is Hemingway and his no frills style. That type of writer makes writing a craft. It's just not done anymore, or done right. It's nice to see someone like Charyn take up the banner and herald it into the future.

BITTER BRONX is a compilation of short stories with a multitude of crisscrossing themes, published separately at one time or another from 2006 through 2013 in various literary periodicals. The unifying thread is the tension between men and women with the shadow of mental illness hovering over "the brick wasteland" of New York's northernmost borough.

For Charyn, love fails because the mind can't handle the full implications of it. Women are institutionalized. Men slog through life, coping with depression. Yet men and women can't seem to live without each other, despite the inevitable heartache and pain any potential union is bound to cause. Charyn gets specific when it comes to what the human heart desires. He labels the upside of love as "perfect passion" with jealousy and violence as its inevitable downside. Attraction is coupled with confusion until the dividing line between the two is no longer distinguishable.

Take for example, "the bluest eyes in all of Manhattan." They come with the warning, "Never touch the boss's daughter."

There's a push and pull throughout that makes for an bittersweet blend of longing and despair. Charyn shows how the two are linked by having fun with a kooky assortment of fiercely independent ladies and the downtrodden men who try to win them over.

At the heart of it, no one wants to be in the Bronx. It's the last outpost for many. Some never left. Others arrive because they have nowhere else to go. It's not the ideal setting for love to thrive. It's harsh, brutal, draining. Past success is quickly forgotten. Future ambitions are easily thwarted. The present is a no man's land of get what you can get, while you can get it. There are no long term commitments when surviving into the next day comes with no guarantee.

Charyn captures this sense of anxious inertia brilliantly. The Bronx wants to move ahead. It wants to rediscover itself. But it can't. And for now, the best Charyn can do is make it happen in the pages of his book.

***

Bitter Bronx can be purchased at:
Amazon, Barnes and Noble

Prices/Formats: $9.99-$12.49 ebook, $24.95 hardcover
Genre: Short Stories
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780871404893
Publisher: Liveright
Release: June 1, 2015
Click to add to your Goodreads list.


About the Author

Jerome Charyn's stories have appeared in The Atlantic, The Paris Review, The American Scholar, Epoch, Narrative, Ellery Queen, and other magazines. His most recent novel is I Am Abraham. He lived for many years in Paris and currently resides in Manhattan.

Links to connect with Jerome:
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Friday, March 20, 2015

Ellen March - Love on the Menu - Review & Giveaway



About the Book

Jago Tanner is a loner. He works up a good hunger at his outdoors pursuits centre in Wales and looks upon each female conquest as just another meal. When he’s sated, he doesn’t go back for dessert. Until Riley shows up. A Londoner hired through an agency to assist him with activities, she isn’t at all what he asked for. For starters, with the name Riley, he expected a man. But Riley is all woman—the sexiest woman Jago has ever laid eyes on. Unfortunately she dresses like a trollop and curses like a sailor. Though ignorant about most outdoors pursuits, she’s a skilled horsewoman, able to calm even his nerviest stallion. And her lively and generous nature enchants his housekeeper Emily and his ancient friend, Tom.

In short, Jago’s new employee is a bundle of contradictions. Which is why, when Jago falls for her, he doesn’t trust his feelings. Riley seems unusually accident prone, and when her brother’s shady friends menace her, she plays the innocent. But how can anyone so self-sufficient and mouthy also be so trusting and naïve? And can a man with Jago’s volatile nature endure the jealousy a woman like Riley provokes just by strolling down the street?


My Review

Cowboys in Wales?

It certainly makes for an intriguing concept.

Alas, there aren't any Stetsons or pickup trucks in this novel, but there are plenty of boots and saddles to go around. Wide open spaces give way to the bleakness of a rough and rugged mountain range, while the wind-swept moors stand in for the prairie heartland. Yet that fierce independent spirit of the Old West remains the same on both sides of the Atlantic.

Cowboys make good romantic heroes, whether they have a British accent or not.

Tyrian is the rustic domain of Jago Tanner. It's the name of the country estate he inherited from his uncle and turned into an outdoor pursuits centre. It's the type of place where corporate types go to bond outside the office with Jago as their naturalist guide. However, it turns out Jago's not a steer-wrestling, bronco-bucking rodeo star. In fact, he's more like a stock broker in tight fitting jeans than some cattle rustler. Jago has a shrewd hand in managing his finances, knowing how to build upon his family's wealth. While his large fortune allows him to indulge in his passion of being in the great outdoors full time, it doesn't necessarily make him happy.

And the small neighboring village is well aware of the moodiness of their most affluent resident. Jago is known for getting into fights, even though he always walks away the winner. That's because he's a big, strapping guy that no one ever gets the best of. He's brash and arrogant. The kind of man who's used to getting his way.

That's why the patrons of the local pub cheer when they see a girl like Riley Smith put him in his place. They've been waiting a long time to see Jago taken down a few pegs, and she's just the girl to do it. The old toothless sheep farmers, with bailing cord holding up their trousers and muddy wellies on their feet, enjoy watching Riley get Jago all flustered. He's usually the one leaving women speechless, including the eighty-three-year-old barkeep, until Riley takes him on.

Jago's not safe anywhere now that she's arrived. He's getting it at home, as well as in the village. His longtime cook, Emily, places herself firmly in Riley's camp. She was taken with the young lass as soon as she walked through the door, hoping her cantankerous employer finally met his match. Emily delights along with the rest of the villagers in introducing the young Londoner to some of the area's signature dishes from a made from scratch potato pie pastry to cawl, a piping hot vegetable lamb stew. Riley is someone who's used to eating frozen dinners or grabbing takeaway whenever she has spare change. So she wastes no time in scarfing down these home-cooked meals, letting them dribble down her chin, much to Jago's chagrin.

Jago always expected the woman he'd fall in love with to be dignified and ladylike. He never dreamed that he'd fall for a foul-mouthed bartender with nothing but a broken-down Volkswagen Beetle to her name. Riley only has a few quid in her pocket, yet she's willing to spend it on him, buying him a thank you gift for letting her keep her job at Tyrian as his assistant. She had no experience when he hired her, but he kept his word, giving her the chance to prove herself.

Little does Riley know that she might actually become the lady of the manor in the very near future, if Jago has any say in the ending to this rags to riches tale.

***

Love on the Menu can be purchased at:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble 
Smashwords

Prices/Formats: $4.95 ebook, $13.95 paperback
Pages: 244
Genre: Steamy Cowboy Romance
Release: February 14, 2015
Publisher: Fanny Press
ISBN: 9781603815680
Click to add to your Goodreads list.


About the Author

Ellen March and her husband live on top of a mountain in Wales, which is ideal in the summer but not so much in the winter months or when it rains. She has three grown children, one suicidal cat--it really does have nine lives--and three Alaskan Malamutes. One of her hobbies is showing and working them. Ellen's first love, however, is reading and writing. Since childhood, she has devoured every romance and fantasy she can get her hands on and enjoys acting out her own fantasies in print. Her body of work includes erotic romance, psychological thrillers, and supernatural fantasies. Fanny Press has published three of her erotic romances--Promises, His Girl Friday, and A Ghost of an Affair--and will be publishing more in 2015 and beyond.

Links to connect with Ellen:
Web Site
Facebook
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Friday, March 6, 2015

Sharon St. George - Due for Discard - Review & Giveaway



About the Book

Aimee Machado is thrilled to be starting her first job as a forensic librarian at the medical center in the town of Timbergate, north of Sacramento, California. Her ebullient mood is somewhat dampened by her recent breakup with her former live-in boyfriend, Nick Alexander. And then there's a little matter of murder: on Aimee's first day on the job, a body is found in a nearby Dumpster and soon identified as her supervisor's wife, Bonnie Beardsley.

Aimee's heartbreaker of a brother and best friend, Harry, just happens to be one of the last people to see Bonnie alive, but he is hardly the only suspect. Bonnie was notorious for her wild partying and man-stealing ways, and she has left a trail of broken hearts and bitterness. Aimee is determined to get her brother off the suspect list.

Aimee's snooping quickly makes her a target. Isolated on her grandparents' llama farm where she fled post-breakup, she realizes exactly how vulnerable she is. Three men have pledged to protect her: her brother Harry, her ex, Nick, and the dashing hospital administrator with a reputation for womanizing, Jared Quinn. But they can't be on the alert every minute, not when Aimee is so bent on cracking the case with or without their help.

Book 1 in a new mystery series featuring amateur sleuth Aimee Machado.


My Review

Race is a complex issue. Yet in fiction when it's dealt with subtly, it can make such a strong impact. A competent writer can take readers inside the skin of a character and have them feel what it's like to go through life as a person of color, or an ethnicity different from their own. Understated prejudices run just as deep as any verbal slur or uttered epithet. Oftentimes, daily interactions are tinged with an undercurrent of mistrust backed by false assumptions. The individual isn't seen, only the stereotype.

In the opening of DUE FOR DISCARD, Aimee Machado is confronted with the question, "You're not from around here are you?" Even though she's the new research librarian at Timbergate Medical Center. Even though she just received her master's degree from Southern Connecticut State University. She's no dummy, yet the security guard views her with suspicion because she's half Portuguese, half Chinese. She doesn't look like everyone else so for him it automatically throws up a red flag. She's targeted solely for her skin color, and this ignorant authority figure makes her feel the sting.

It's not the first time that Aimee's stood out in her hometown, a rural section of Northern California that's predominantly white. In fact, it's the reason why growing up she learned how to defend herself by studying martial arts at the local dojo. One particular childhood incident really left its mark on her. She still harbors painful memories of the day she laid into a bully on the school bus, breaking his finger in the process. It was the only time she ever resorted to violence, yet to this day she continues to carry with her a reluctance to hurt anyone. Afraid of her own strength, so to speak.

However, when her brother, Harry, is viewed as a suspect in the murder of Bonnie Beardsley, the wife of a prominent plastic surgeon, Aimee's fears are quick to resurface. Harry is a fit, good-looking guy who's known around town as the successful architect who just landed the new mall project. However, he was seen coming out of his abode with the beautiful, blonde Mrs. Beardsley hours before her disappearance. It doesn't take long for the police to point the finger at Harry, especially when the evidence indicates there may have been a sexual component to the crime, as well.

But the suggestion is preposterous since Harry recently saved Aimee from being raped by the brother of a police officer. When Aimee pulled over to check out a flat tire, she was jumped from behind and nearly assaulted before Harry showed up. Harry was charged with using excessive physical force to protect his sister, and the assailant was sent to prison. Yet the pall cast on his brother's law enforcement career continued to fester, accounting for the eagerness of the police department to pin Mrs. Beardsley's murder on Harry. But the corruption doesn't stop there, because it turns out this particular officer is also bedding the female DA.

It's no wonder that Aimee says that her twin blisters are jealousy and insecurity. The Machados have worked hard to maintain their exceptional reputation in the community, and now it looks like it'll all be for nothing. After their father retired, the family business was left to Harry, and he thought he was on the right track until his fiancée left him because her parents didn't want their grandchildren to look foreign. That's when Harry started shacking up with random women. In the book, he never admits to sleeping with Bonnie Beardsley at any time before her death, but he does claim that she tried to get him in a lip lock when he walked her to her car, insisting that he thwarted her advances and pushed her away.

Yet it seems like the Machado siblings don't have much luck when it comes to love. One of Aimee's hard-and-fast rules is to never date a cheater, and when she thinks she catches her boyfriend, Nick, with another woman, she cuts off all ties with him. Her heart aches because it was the first time she ever considered herself to be truly in love, yet she stubbornly guards her heart, refusing to believe that he might actually be telling the truth when he said nothing happened between him and his ex-girlfriend.

Nick knows how rare a woman like Aimee is. Nothing about her smacks of manipulation or pretense and he claims that he'd never do anything to jeopardize losing her. However, Nick doesn't give up on Aimee. He's determined to help her prove Harry's innocence, no matter how much she keeps pushing him away.

And Aimee needs that kind of loyalty when Bonnie Beardsley's husband makes a play for her. The philandering doctor doesn't waste any time pursuing Aimee after his wife's tragic death. Aimee knows that he has a penchant for exotic-looking women and every time he looks at her she feels like he's envisioning her in a kimono. He's enthralled by her chameleon-like tendency to transform from Mulan to Pocahontas, but his interest in her just plays into all of the insecurities she has about herself. She feels that when a man like him looks at her eyes and cheekbones, all he thinks is concubine and the only time he thinks wife is when he comes across a blue-eyed blonde like Bonnie.

The author, Sharon St. George, nails the tone of what she's trying to express through the character of Aimee with the clever title, DUE FOR DISCARD. It's a librarian's term for the stamp placed on outdated books and periodicals. Aimee knows that that stamp was already placed on Bonnie Beardsley when her body was found in a Dumpster outside the hospital, and she has no intention of the same thing happening to her, or her brother. No amount of racial profiling is going to pin the buxom blonde's murder on them, not if Aimee has anything to say about it.

***

Due for Discard can be purchased at:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
Smashwords

Prices/Formats: $4.95 ebook, $15.95 paperback
Pages: 340
Genre: Detective Murder Mystery
Release: March 1, 2015
Publisher: Camel Press
ISBN: 9781603812238
Click to add to your Goodreads list.


About the Author

Sharon St. George had the good fortune to spend an idyllic childhood in a small northern California town, riding horseback and camping with her family in the nearby mountains. One of her favorite pastimes was reading fiction, and a trip to the library was always an occasion of great joy. She’s traded horses for llamas, but she still treks to the high mountain lakes near her home—always with a mystery novel in her backpack. Sharon’s writing credits include three plays, several years writing advertising copy, a book on NASA’s space food project, and feature stories too numerous to count. She holds dual degrees in English and Theatre Arts, and occasionally acts in, or directs, one of her local community theater productions. Sharon is a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America, and she serves as program director for Writers Forum, a nonprofit organization for writers in northern California.

Links to connect with Sharon:
Web Site
Goodreads
Blog Tour Site


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Friday, December 12, 2014

Cristelle Comby - Danse Macabre - Review & Giveaway



About the Book

Private investigators Alexandra Neve and Ashford Egan are hired to succeed where the police have failed, to safely return home a missing ballerina. With no lead to pursue and no idea who could be behind the young woman’s kidnapping, they soon find themselves at a loss as to what to do.

To make matters worse, the heart of England seems to be caught in the middle of a little Ice Age. With snow endlessly falling and Tube lines either too cramped up to use or out of service, it is a pain to do any legwork in the huge metropolis.

Oh, and because trouble never comes alone, there may also be a serial killer on the loose in the streets of East London...


My Review

"I will always come and find you."

That's Alexandra Neve's promise—to her blind investigating partner whenever he gets in trouble, to the kidnapped women she hopes to rescue, to the serial killer she has in her crosshairs. Yet, her doggedness turns her into a magnet for danger. Her life is threatened on more than one occasion, but she channels her fear, using it to fuel her passion for her life's work because once she's involved in a case, she can't stop until she solves it. It drives her, consumes her. She views her job like a chess game, making strategic moves against an invisible opponent, one who's determined to win at all costs.

But she has one weakness—the well being of her fellow investigator, Ashford Egan. He knew he was going to lose his sight before it happened, but he still wasn't prepared for how alone it would make him feel. His mother was more concerned about finding an impossible cure than in helping him adjust to his condition. His father retreated into his work and virtually turned his back on him, so Ashford was left with no one, until Alexandra entered his life, changing it forever. She was his student at University College London and together they left academia and embarked on this new endeavor together, opening their own private eye agency.

Now they're hunting a murderer who turns his victims into puppets made of flesh and bone, the horrid tableaus at the crime scenes eliciting nothing but wretched disgust in those unfortunate to witness them. Young girls are being mutilated for no reason—talented girls who excel in the performing arts from choir soloists and concert pianists to prima ballerinas and reality show singers. The killer's after something in particular, Alexandra and Ashford just aren't sure what.

But there's one thing standing in their way—"the curse of the uniform." Detective Matthew Stenson of London's Metropolitan Police Force is more than a little interested in Alexandra. He helps them with the case, putting his job in jeopardy as he becomes more and more disillusioned with the blatant corruption in his department. Ashford doesn't get in the way of their burgeoning relationship, but it's worth noting that Alexandra spends the majority of her time with her partner and not with her copper boyfriend. She teases Ashford about being 'Mr. No Social Life' but she's just as guilty when it comes to not making room in her life for romance. She'd rather work a case with Ashford than risk being stood up on dates that Stenson keeps canceling.

While it's hard to schedule alone time with Stenson, Alexandra has no problem getting through to Ashford. She's able to look past his anger, hurt and pain and really listen to him, knowing that what he's really trying to say is, "Don't leave me." Ashford doesn't want Alexandra to "mother-hen him," viewing him as a child in constant need of her help and attention, yet somehow she always seems to know exactly what he needs from her, clearly making him her number one priority.

Their friendship is heartfelt, yet humorous. When they climb down a ladder and into the tube system, she tells him to stop looking at her bum, even though he certainly can't see it. When she guides him through tight quarters placing his hands on her hips, the moment is likened to their dancing in a conga line. She helps him unzip his coat and he ribs her about always wanting to undress him. She gets back at him by encouraging him to order a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey in Braille, even though he has no clue what the book's about. They ease the high stakes tension by joking around with each other, but there's more to it than that. When they're interrogating a witness and Ashford clenches his fist, he relaxes only at Alexandra's touch. After his apartment is burglarized and he's alone and bleeding, the first person he calls is Alexandra, and she drops everything to come to his aid.

Clearly, they're two parts of the same whole, but sometimes Alexandra questions if their laid back approach is getting in the way of the job. She kicks herself when they miss the killer by mere minutes and instead discover the body of yet another victim. She regrets taking so many breaks, feeling like they're not taking the case seriously enough, thinking they're capable of doing more. But when Ashford's eyes glaze over and become as dead as those of the victim they were too late to save, she knows something's wrong, and that she needs to slow down, pull back and be there for him. They're both dealing with a lot, but Alexandra knows that Ashford comes first, and always will, because that's what she promised him, and she never goes back on her promises.

***

Danse Macabre can be purchased at:
Amazon

Prices/Formats: $2.99 ebook, $11.99 paperback
Pages: 254
Genre: New Adult, Detective Mystery
Release: October 2014
Publisher: self-published
ISBN: 9781502723772
Click to add to your Goodreads list.


About the Author

Cristelle Comby was born and raised in the French-speaking area of Switzerland, in Greater Geneva, where she still resides.

Thanks to her insatiable thirst for American and British action films and television dramas, her English is fluent.

She attributes to her origins her ever-peaceful nature and her undying love for chocolate. She has a passion for art, which also includes an interest in drawing and acting.

Danse Macabre is her third new-adult novel, and she’s hard at work on the next titles in the Neve & Egan series.

Links to connect with Cristelle:
Web Site
Twitter
Goodreads
Instagram
Blog Tour Site


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