While on this blog, reading through posts, I saw the “Stay Strong Boston” post, of course, which lifted my spirits. It’s been such a rollercoaster week for the United States. As I watch from overseas, it’s just stunning how many murders, attempted murders, and explosions have occurred. I’m always grateful for the real life, everyday heroes on the front lines of these situations, and that’s why I write books about them. The book I’m on tour for right now is Nobody’s Damsel, which is narrated by Chloe Winters, a forensic scientist who works for the Albuquerque Police Department. She was also the victim of a homicide attempt when she was eleven years old, and survived it very much against the odds. The plot follows a case of a ten year old girl’s abduction.
Chloe, to me, represents reality. What is hard and fast, sure and undeniable, measurable and quantifiable. She’s all about control, diligence, and documentation. It’s her job to discover what happened at a crime scene, and be able to back up her determination with cold, hard facts.
Her husband, incidentally, is a Hollywood A-lister, so famous that he can’t cross the street without attracting a crowd. While it might seem like someone like Chloe would be intimidated by someone like her husband, Jason, that has never been the case. She’s not one to get star struck, and acting, if you really think about it, is a pretty strange job. That’s what she thinks, at least.
Jason is of the same mind, and that’s a constant source of discontent for him. He finds it hard to endure all the screaming fans and media scrutiny for his time on the big screen, running around shirtless with silly props and improbable fight scenarios. He thinks there’s something wrong with a world that will show up in droves to a movie premier, but switch the channel when there’s breaking news of a homicide or kidnapping. Every day he watches a real life hero at work, and wonders what the purpose is of his existence.
To me, Jason represents dreams and imagination. His life is all about what could be and what might be, and for what it’s worth, I don’t agree with his assessment of his profession. People dismiss dreams and imagination too easily, but where would we be without them? Stuck in reality 24/7/365, and don’t get me wrong. I like reality. I’d like to think I have a very healthy relationship with it, but it isn’t somewhere I can live full time. I’d argue that it isn’t somewhere anyone could live full time, which is why we spend the obscene amounts of money that we do as a society on entertainment. It isn’t frivolous or wasteful, it’s essential.
I originally wrote about Chloe and Jason in Someone Else’s Fairytale, which follows their courtship, but once that book was done, I couldn’t let them go. They’ve just got too much else to say, so I wrote Nobody’s Damsel, and will keep writing books about them for as long as people want to read them (and likely longer). In Nobody’s Damsel, we meet the demons from Chloe’s past, and she must decide if she can endure them day in and day out for the rest of her career. “Nobody’s Damsel” might imply a strong woman who needs a rescue, but consider what it would actually be like to be nobody’s damsel, to know that no one can save you if you fall.
EXCERPT from NOBODY'S DAMSEL
My mother paused for dramatic effect, then said, “I’ve read over twenty articles that say Jason’s back together with Vicki Hanson.”
I could just picture my mother on the couch of her run down little apartment in Fargo, North Dakota, with some tabloid or other in her lap. She was probably in her bathrobe with little foam dividers between her freshly manicured toes, her blond hair piled on top of her head in its usual French twist. “What do you mean back?” I said.
“That’s who he was dating when he met you.”
To my knowledge, Jason hadn’t been dating anyone when we met. That was why he’d pursued me. Vicki had been his costar on his hit Disney show back when he was a teenager, so they were probably good friends, but I’d never met her, which just went to show how much I still didn’t know about my husband. She was also his costar in this upcoming film shoot.
“I just saw Jason, Mom. He’s not with anyone else.”
“Saw on Skype?”
“No. He’s here for the evening. Back at Jen’s house.”
“Where are you, then?”
“I’ve got a crime scene to investigate.”
“And he’s okay with that? He flies out to see you-”
“Mom, he’s the one who insisted I go. He’s very supportive of my career.”
“That’s a warning sign.”
“What, being supportive?”
“Wanting you at work, out of the way, busy with other concerns. That gives him more breathing room to do what he wants.”
“Then why would he fly all the way back to Albuquerque for the night?”
“To keep up appearances with his family.”
“Exactly how much thought have you given this, Mom?”
“I can’t help it. I don’t want to see you get hurt.”
“Yeah, well telling me my marriage is falling apart-”
“Would you prefer not to know?”
E.M. Tippetts grew up in New Mexico and now lives in London, where she raises two boisterous toddlers, designs jewelry, and writes novels. A former attorney, she used to specialize in real estate and estate planning, specifically literary estate planning. She currently has five novels out, Time & Eternity, Paint Me True, Someone Else's Fairytale, Castles on the Sand, and Nobody's Damsel (Fairytale 2).
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Barnes and Noble:
April 29 – The YA Bookshelf – Review & Excerpt
April 30 – For the Love of Film and Novels – Review & Excerpt
May 1 – Well Shut the Front Door – Guest Post & Q&A
May 2 – Laura’s Review Bookshelf – Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
May 3 – The Book Bag – Review & Excerpt
May 3 – Well Shut the Front Door – Review & Excerpt
May 7 – The Book Fetish Blog – Review
May 8 – A Blue Million Books – Guest Post, Q&A & Excerpt
May 10 – Storm Goddess Book Reviews – Review & Excerpt
May 13 – Change the Word – Review & Excerpt
May 14 – Change the Word – Q&A
May 15 – Samantha March – Q&A & Excerpt
May 17 – Michelle’s Book Nook – Review
May 20 – Jersey Girl Book Reviews – Review, Guest Post & Excerpt
**Everyone who leaves a comment on E.M.’s tour page will be entered to win a $20 Amazon gift card! Anyone who purchases their copy of Nobody's Damsel before May 20 and sends their receipt to Samantha (at) ChickLitPlus (dot) com, will get five bonus entries.**