Monday, March 17, 2014

The Seduction of Miriam Cross




 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Author Bio:

 
Wendy Tyson's background in law and psychology has provided inspiration for her mysteries and thrillers.  The Seduction of Miriam Cross, published by E-Lit Books in November 2013, is the first novel in the Delilah Percy Powers mystery series.  She has also authored Killer Image, published by Henery Press, the first in the Allison Campbell mystery series.  Her second Allison Campbell mystery is due out this summer.  Find Wendy at www.WATyson.com.
 
Find her at:

 www.WATyson.com and on twitter (www.twitter.com/wendytyson) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/wendytysonauthor). 
 
Buy the Book!
 
 
 
 
 
Can Delilah Percy Powers figure out who killed Miriam Cross before she becomes the killer's next target? 

Miriam Cross, author, feminist and philanthropist, disappears from her Philadelphia home. A year later, a lonely recluse named Emily Cray is brutally murdered in her bed in a small Pennsylvania town. Miriam and Emily are one and the same. As Delilah and her staff of female detectives - a militant homemaker, an ex-headmistress and a former stripper - delve into Miriam’s life, they become submerged in an underworld of unfathomable cruelty and greed with implications that go far beyond the gruesome death of one woman or the boundaries of one country. Eventually Miriam’s fight for justice becomes Delilah’s own...until Delilah’s obsession with finding the truth may prove just as deadly.
 
March 17 – Literary Chanteuse – Excerpt
 
March 18 – Sweets Books – Excerpt
 
March 20 –Mrs. Mommy Booknerd’s Book Reviews – Guest Post & Excerpt
 
March 21 – Chick Lit Plus – Review
 
March 24 – Little Miss Drama Queen – Guest Post & Q&A
 
March 26 – Nana Prah’s Blog – Excerpt
 
March 27 – The Gothic Ballerina – Review
 
April 1 – Samantha March – Q&A & Excerpt
 
April 3 – Ms Nose in a Book – Review & Excerpt
 
April 4 – Annabel & Alice – Review
 
April 7 – Keep Calm and Blog On – Review
 
April 7 – Authors and Readers Book Corner – Q&A 
 
**Everyone who leaves a comment on the tour page will be entered to win a $20 Amazon gift card! Anyone who purchases a copy of The Seduction of Miriam Cross by April 7 and sends their receipt to Samantha (at) ChickLitPlus.com will receive 10 bonus entries!**

 

PROLOGUE

 
The sound, a subtle scrape of metal against metal, drilled through her subconscious, jarring her awake.  She picked her head up off her desk, rubbed her eyes, and looked around the dim room, telling herself to focus.  Outside, the wind howled.  The branches of the big pine hit her window in a rhythmic tap, tap, tap.  She tried to listen beyond the wind, beyond the falling rain, beyond the pounding of her own heart.  She heard only silence.
Quickly, fervently, she organized the materials she’d been working on into a pile and fastened them with a binder clip.  She shoved everything into a desk drawer and locked the drawer with a small silver key.  Her computer screen was black, so she tapped the mouse and waited impatiently for the screen to come alive.  Just to be safe, she hit the save button, exited the document and shut down her computer.  All of this took her a minute, tops.  It felt like forever.
She stole a glance at the clock on her desk.  2:48.  Had she bolted the doors and windows before she’d gone into her study?  It’d been around nine, so no, probably not.  She cursed herself for falling asleep. 
 
She made her way through the study and out into the hallway that divided her one-story house.  The darkness felt thick and viscous, enveloping her in dread.  Try as she might, she still heard nothing beyond the storm.  Perhaps it had been a dream.  But her gut said that wasn’t the case–and once upon a time she’d been a woman who trusted her gut.
She didn’t dare turn on a light.  Feeling her way along the walls, she passed the open doors to her bedroom and bath, each room a dark abyss in the early morning hour.  She held her breath.  A few more feet and she would be in the living room.  Beyond that, the kitchen and the back door.  She needed to check the locks.  Then she could return to her study and finish what she’d needed to finish in the first place.
 
A table lamp in the living room cast shadows across the small, carpeted space.  Her gaze flew from one end of the room to the other, pausing in the darkened corners.  Nothing looked disturbed.  Relieved, she crept to the front door and fastened the bolts, stopping only to take a deep breath in a failed attempt to calm her jittery nerves.  A year of running had made her paranoid.  A year of relative anonymity had, perhaps, made her careless.
 
Paranoia was fine.  But she could ill afford to be careless.
She turned, pulling her cardigan closer against a sudden chill.  For the briefest of moments, her mind flitted to another time, to feelings of warmth and contentment.  But some things were bigger than one person’s feelings and she forced herself back to the present.  To her own safety.  To the safety of others.
 
The kitchen was dark.
Her pulse raced.  She could have sworn she’d put the light on over the stove.  Yes, she was certain.  She’d retired to her study after a dinner of bread and soup and had left the dishes out to be cleaned later.  The light had been her reminder.
But the light was off.
That meant . . .
“Hello, Emily.”
She jumped. While her eyes scanned the darkened kitchen for the person associated with the disembodied voice, her mind spun with more practical matters.  What had she left out?  What would they find? 
 
He said, “This place is very . . . quaint.”
She spotted him in the shadows.  He sat sprawled on a chair by the back door, his legs out in front of him, something long and metal on the table by his side.  In the dark, his face was hidden.  But she recognized the voice.
“How did you find me?”
“Does it matter?”
She ironed the shakiness from her voice.  “It does to me.”
“We have our sources.”
“We,” she repeated.
“Does that bother you, Emily?”
 
She remained silent, her eyes on the back door, which, she noticed now, stood slightly ajar.  How long would it take her to reach it–could she get there before he did?  Even if she did, what then?  A run to the neighbor’s house?  To what end?  So that she could knock loudly on the locked door and wait until the frightened woman finally agreed to open up?  By then he’d have caught her.  Perhaps her bolted front door?  But her car keys were in her purse . . . and what if he wasn’t alone?
“What do you want?” she said.
“You know what we want.”
“No.”
 
He smiled.  It was a shark’s grin, full of cold-blooded malice, a reminder of who he was and all that he stood for.  She knew then that she could tell herself whatever lies gave her momentary comfort, but the truth was, she was going to die in this house, far from everything she held so dear.
Oddly, this sudden understanding gave her strength.  She forced herself to meet his gaze.  She smiled.  “Killing me will do you absolutely no good.”
 
He raised his arm.  In his hand was a needle.  Another icy smile.  “I beg to differ.”
She shook her head, thankful for her forethought.  He–they, she reminded herself–could take what they could from her.  But it wouldn’t be everything.
 
He rose and took two steps in her direction.  She saw now that the glistening metal object on the table was a knife.  An impossibly long knife.  She swallowed, again measuring the distance between her and a door. 
 
In a burst of desperation, she stepped toward the back door, then quickly turned and ran toward the living room.  She fumbled with the bolts, forcing jittery hands to steady as she jammed the locks away from their resting places.
 
The last bolt in her hand, she felt him behind her.  Strong fingers clasped over her mouth, hot breath on her neck.  She struggled against him, but it was no use.  He was too big, too powerful.  Her only weapon was retreat.
“Oh, Emily,” he said.  A hand slipped down her side, cupped her breast, continued down to her waist.  There it stopped.  “What were you thinking?”
 
She remained quiet and closed her eyes.  He tugged at her sweater, pulling it off.  Her bare arms prickled in the chilly air.  He grabbed her forearm.  She felt the sting of the needle and waited for the haze that would no doubt descend.  He picked her up, carried her to the back of the house.  Toward her study.
 
She knew what he wanted.  What they wanted.
She wouldn’t give it to him.  That much she could do.
 

3 comments:

  1. Wow! If that doesn't make you want to pick up the book, I don't know what will!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for hosting THE SEDUCTION OF MIRIAM CROSS on your blog. Thrilled to be here!

    ReplyDelete