Published by St. Martin's Griffin on May 24th 2016
Genres: African American Romance, Crime Drama
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Lucy Price is living the American dream. She has been married to her successful husband and businessman, Edward Price for a year and couldn’t be happier until she learns that Eddie is a dangerously ruthless man, heavily involved in illegal activities that threaten not only her marriage, but her life. Eddie abruptly disappears, but not before warning Lucy that if she wants to keep breathing she'd better keep her mouth shut. Six months later, word of her husband surfaces when she learns that he is presumed murdered in a small Texas town, apparently killed by his “wife”, Marlowe Price.
Marlowe is no stranger to trouble. An outcast in her own community for being one of those "hoodoo women," who can curse you or cast you under her beguiling spell, Marlowe is shunned at every turn. Six months ago, a whirlwind romance in Mexico led Marlowe to marry the man she thought she’d spend the rest of her life with. For Marlowe and Eddie, there is no such thing as trouble in paradise. But late one night, when Marlowe witnesses her husband putting the body of a dead man in the trunk of his car, the illusion comes crashing down around her and she knows she has to move fast before the devil comes calling once again.
Now, Lucy and Marlowe must come together to find out where and who Eddie really is, and help each other through the threat he poses. There's nothing more dangerous than a woman scorned...except for two women scorned who are willing to put their pasts behind them and band together to take one bad man down...
This is my first JD Mason and even though this book didn’t really work for me, I’d be willing to read up on this author.
In my quest for black authors of crime fiction, I found JD Mason and decided to give this book a shot. I felt the the ramp up to the climax of the story to be a little slow and meandering. It took me about a week to get to 30% because I just couldn’t find the hook. Then in one day I read from 30% to the end. Maybe a note for future readers… hang in there.
This novel is the story of Ed Price, a criminal who, on the outside seemed a normal man, but who was a bigamist who wasn’t true to either of his wives. The book opens with Ed trying to convince Lucy not to turn him in for the suspected murder of his colleague. He abuses her and probably would have killed her, had their scuffle not been interrupted. Ed knows he’ll be arrested eventually, so he abandons Lucy and for six months, is not seen or heard.
Until a body, burnt to a crisp, shows up in a burned out vehicle not far from Marlowe Price’s home in the tiny town of Blink, Texas.
I feel as if I didn’t get to know Lucy Price very well. She seemed like the agreeable, innocent wife, abused by Ed Price and then abandoned, seeing as how he was probably going to be arrested for murder. Later, Lucy’s personality takes on some odd twists that seem incongruent with what (little) we know of her.
Marlowe, on the other hand, became the star of the show. Mysterious, sexy, enchanting Marlowe who seems to cast a spell on every man in her presence, including the massive man hunter Plato. In my mind, he’s played by Lawrence Fishburne.
Plato rides into town on the news that Marlowe has been accused of Ed Price’s murder. He’s there to do a job– find Ed if he isn’t dead (which becomes quite obvious) and recover the money that was embezzled. Plato doesn’t get very far before he falls under the spell of Marlowe, a voluptuous woman who believes in witchcraft and dark spirits, who calls him Lucifer and a devil, who reads bones and creates potions for a living.
Lucy and her Private Detective, Roman are looking for Ed, too. Until that burned out body is identified, no one knows if Ed is dead. And if Ed isn’t dead, he might come back for Lucy.
And then there is the matter of two sets of numbers. Ed’s going to need those back.
There’s a fair amount of mystery in this book but nothing really surprising, no twists or ‘oh crap’ moments, really. Some steamy sex scenes and engaging B-stories in which both Mrs. Price gets to move on with her life.
A bit of a slow start but overall an enjoyable read with a few spots of action, intrigue and sex.