A ringing phone at 1:17 am is never a good thing, but Homicide Detective Kate Springer doesn’t have the luxury of ignoring the call. On the other end of the line, a confessor admits to murdering her husband. Dr. Nina Grace needs help, and Kate knows it’s time to repay a debt. No matter the consequences, Kate must fight to keep the investigation from solely focusing on her friend.
Jonathan Grace controls the people in his life like he does his business—with a chokehold. His insatiable appetite for living life on the edge leads him to a club where he’s encouraged to act out his darkest desires. But what happens when one man’s fantasy becomes another’s nightmare?
Did Dr. Nina Grace kill her husband or did Jonathan’s secret life lead to his death? Detective Springer knows that no matter what her friend admitted, she couldn’t be capable of the horrific torture and murder of her husband. But will Kate’s blind loyalty be her downfall?
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
The first book in the series, “Dead Like Me,” was all about Kate. In this second book in the series, I wanted to explore Kate’s relationships with those closest to her. It was also important to me that even though this book built off the first, it’s still stands alone. As a voracious reader, I will oftentimes discover a new author mid-series. I appreciate when a book stands alone so that I can enjoy truly enjoy it without feeling as if I missed something. Then if I like the author enough, I’ll go back and read all their other books. I also like when an author hints at past story lines but doesn’t ruin them. That’s what you’ll find with my work.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
Homicide Detective Kate Springer is a flawed woman. When you first meet her, you may not like her—she seems a bit cold and bristly. It’s just her way of keeping everyone at arm’s length. She’s lived too much life in her thirty-eight years and she struggles with issues of trying to control the people and the circumstances in her life. Yet once you get deeper into the story you realize she’s trying to become a better person. She knows her faults and she wants to be a better person. But just like all of us, she makes mistakes on the path to becoming the woman she wants to be.
The evening flooded back like snapshots in a memory book. Hotel. Celebration. Drinks. Skin. Lots of skin. I grabbed my ringing phone with one hand and moved the bedside alarm clock closer with the other. The numbers burned 1:17 am, mocking my now awakened state.
After three years as a homicide detective, a call this late, or early depending on your point of view, could only mean one thing—a dead body. It was just a matter of time. Tampa hadn’t had a murder victim laid at its doorstep in four days.
A voice next to me grumbled, begging me to make the ringing noise stop.
“Detective Springer,” I croaked into the phone.
Nothing but dead air.
Great, crank call. I twisted sideways, getting ready to switch on the nearby lamp, but stopped midair when a whimper, childlike yet aged with the sound of regret, broke free from the phone’s speaker. “Kate? Kate?”
I knew that voice. But from where? The cobwebs from too much partying cluttered my mind. The crackling of bad reception filled the airways.
“Kate, I think I killed my husband.”
Dr. Nina Grace. Finally attaching a name to the confessor, I asked, “What? What do you mean—” I stopped midsentence, knowing any more words would be wasted. Our call had been disconnected.
I grabbed my clothing scattered around the room and began dressing. “Last night was wonderful,” I said, leaning over Jeffrey, “but I gotta go. Keep sleeping, I’ll call later.” He was so out of it, I doubted he’d even remember me leaving. Hell, we’d been asleep for less than two hours.
Jeffrey turned away from me, rolling over onto his side. He pulled the covers up tight underneath his chin and mumbled, “That’s okay. My wife’s not expecting me home tonight.”
What! Bastard told me he’d separated from his wife six months earlier. Said he’d filed for divorce three weeks ago. I should have known better than to trust a lawyer. Should’ve stopped by the courthouse and looked up the records myself. Unfortunately, the sort of justice he deserved called for more time than I had at the moment. And the right power tools. I had to get to Dr. Grace. She saved my life last year. Now it was time to return the favor.
Writing has always been in my blood. Since the age of thirteen when I coauthored a cheesy romance novel in a blue, spiral bound notebook, I knew I wanted to pursue writing as a career. But somewhere along the way, I lost my voice. Sure I could craft a witty email or write marketing copy for other authors, as I did in a previous job, but to write that great American novel seemed just out of reach.
As is often happens, life simply got in the way. I got married, had three children, and adopted a black Labrador. As a stay-at-home mom, I was lucky to get an hour a day to myself. And when I found those few precious minutes, they were spent reading a good book. A voracious reader, I’ve been researching the mystery and suspense genres for more than two decades.
It was in my search for my own identity after staying at home with the kids that ultimately lead me back to my love of writing. I started my journey towards publication in August 2010. The first draft only took four months to write, but was followed by an enormous amount of time rewriting, and an even longer time searching for a publisher. Determination, perseverance, and God’s blessing made my publishing dream a reality. I signed a contract with Black Rose Writing on May 18, 2012 and my first mystery novel, “Dead Like Me,” debuted in November 2012. The second installment in the Detective Kate Springer series, “Deadly Fantasies” debuted December 19, 2013. Since that time, the book’s rights have reverted back to me and I’ve gone indie!
Guess it’s time to start thinking of my next big dream. New York Times bestselling author some day? Possibly.
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