Proud to be a “Paperback Writer”
By Marilyn Baron
When I heard on the radio that Sunday, February 9 marked the fiftieth anniversary of the Beatles appearance on The Ed Sullivan show, I couldn’t believe it. Or I should say, I can’t believe how old I am. I remember watching that show as a teenager and loving the Fab Four. The Beatles have made an indelible mark on our culture. We can’t all hope to achieve that level of success in our lifetimes. But each, in our own way, can achieve our dreams.
In 2013, I was fortunate to have seven books published! This doesn’t merit Beatles’ fame, but it’s an accomplishment of which I’m very proud. And I’m proud to be a “Paperback Writer.”
I’d like to tell you about my eighth paperback, just published by The Wild Rose Press January 27, 2014. It’s called Homecoming Homicides, a dark romantic suspense with a humorous twist, sort of a Psycho Meets Miss Congeniality.
Here’s the Blurb:
Professional crisis manager Philippa Tannenbaum is spokesperson for the law enforcement task force charged with solving a high-profile case. She never dreams her position as Homecoming Pageant Director and her second-place finish in the previous year’s competition has placed her on a serial killer’s hit list. Always a runner-up in life, she wants to finally come in first at finding the killer targeting the current crop of beauties.
Her friend Luke Slaughter, a Graysville city cop, shows up at Philippa’s office, assigned to partner with her in solving the case and to protect her 24/7 for the duration. Unfortunately, he’s also the man she hooked up with for a one-night stand when she broke up with her fiancé. Working with her is going to be less than easy, for a number of reasons…
Don’t let the cover fool you. This book, although dark, is also humorous. Here are two excerpts that communicate the dark and light side of the novel.
Rodney Willis inhaled the aroma of fresh blood. In his opinion, nothing else even came close to the scent of suffering. The blood was slick and sticky and velvety, and he was practically swimming in it. He’d nearly slipped on the floor this morning while he was in full clean-up mode, getting ready for the new contestant. He needed to buy some combat boots.
The candidate on the table had been a real trooper. He had to give her credit. She’d performed superbly, even exceeded his expectations, although she was rather noisy. He’d had to muffle her screams. The bitch had bitten him, had probably given him rabies, if that was possible. He’d have to research that on the Internet. Not exactly a candidate for Miss Congeniality. He was finally forced to drug the little vixen, and after that it wasn’t nearly as much fun.
“Flippy, I mean Philippa, uh, Miss Tannenbaum, there’s an Officer Luke Slaughter from the Graysville Police Department here to see you.”
Despite her practiced calm, carefully cultivated from her beauty queen days, Flippy’s stomach shuddered as a tremor rumbled through her body. The seismic shift seized her fragile heart. She had never expected to see Luke Slaughter again, much less this soon, fully clothed, and certainly not under these circumstances.
“Send him in, Misty.”
Had she managed to keep the vibrating waves of tension from her voice? Just barely. She squeezed her eyes shut, remembering the last time she’d seen Luke Slaughter, bare and naked, sleeping beside her in her dump of an apartment. Actually, he’d had her in an unconscious octopus hold, hands everywhere, possessively clutching her body like so many tentacles, cutting off her circulation so she could barely breathe. At least it felt like she was suffocating. Had it only been a week ago? Could she face him here after what they’d done (what hadn’t they done?), and after how shabbily she’d treated him when the night was over? Despite the nauseated feeling in her stomach, the answer was “yes,” but it wouldn’t be fun.
Her big opportunity was about to walk through the door, and she didn’t intend to blow it. No matter how much it cost her personally. She’d just have to suck it up and remember who she was now—a professional, with her own office and her own receptionist.
She’d hired Misty Waters away from DaVinci’s, the local pizza hangout next door to the nondescript, but affordable, campus police department annex. Hired her for her personality and her multitasking ability. She’d seen the girl juggle six tables of rowdy college kids without breaking a sweat or dropping a plate. She certainly hadn’t hired her for her fashion sense, which seemed to be based on the concept that “less is more.”
Flippy’s next order of business would be to persuade the ex-pizza tosser to upgrade her wardrobe and perhaps put on something more respectable and less receptive. True, Misty might be a little rough around the edges, but Flippy could spot potential, and the girl had it with a capital “P.”
Misty would be okay as long as she focused on answering the phone and not giving visitors “The Works”—a bird’s-eye view of her considerable toppings. Either way, she sincerely hoped hiring Misty Waters turned out to be a smart decision, because this case of murder and mayhem seemed to be spiraling out of control, and Flippy’s phone wouldn’t stop ringing.
As she looked up, Luke Slaughter backed into her office, magnificent butt first—his muscles straining under the weight of a large cardboard box. He turned to face her, while craning his neck back shamelessly in Misty’s direction. There was something vaguely familiar about the shape of the man’s butt. Or maybe it was that Dirty Harry-sized piece bulging out of his hip holster. Flippy tried to block out all thoughts about the night she’d just spent with Luke Slaughter. It wasn’t difficult to do, since she had been so hammered and intent on revenge against her serial cheating ex-fiancé, Jack Armstrong.
No doubt about it, the man looked good in a uniform. And out of it. And he was a warm body. Sufficient qualifications at the time for a revenge fuck. Flippy suppressed rogue thoughts of that night. A night that refused to stop flashing before her eyes. The only thing clear about that night was that it had been a big mistake. A mistake she’d never make again.
Homecoming Homicides is the sequel to Sixth Sense, Book One of my Psychic Crystal Mystery series but you don’t have to read the first one to enjoy the second. The main characters in Sixth Sense also appear in Homecoming Homicides but there is a separate love story for two new characters and many of these characters will also appear in Book Three of the series.
Buy Homecoming Homicides
After the book’s exclusive Kindle release, the worldwide release date (including paperback format) will be May 9, 2014.
If you’re interested in buying Sixth Sense, it is available in Kindle or Paperback at:
Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00ES5XUIM Amazon.comhttp://amzn.com/B00ES5XUIM
Marilyn is a public relations consultant in Atlanta. She writes humorous women’s fiction, romantic thrillers/suspense, historicals and paranormal. She has won writing awards in Single Title, Suspense Romance and Paranormal/Fantasy Romance. Marilyn blogs at Petit Fours and Hot Tamales at http://www.petitfoursandhottamales.com/. She and her sister, Sharon Goldman, just released a play about Alzheimer’s called Memory Lane. You can find out more about Marilyn’s books and short stories and listen to a medley of the music from Memory Lane on her Web site at www.marilynbaron.com or view it on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hgi_mIdt5MA.