Often I’ve found that grandmothers have lived long enough, and through enough difficulty they have more forgiving attitude toward mere mortals and their issues, even when there are deep, dark secrets, most carefully hidden. These seasoned ladies have survived quite a bit of stuff, some of it was between a rock and a hard place.
PERILOUS SHADOWS, set in the late 1940s, features Kiera Devane, a pioneer newspaper woman struggling to make it in a man’s world. Grandma and great-grandma recall how hard it was for career women back then. It was a glamorous era, but not all of the men were as gentlemanly as we might like to think. In fact, Kiera’s had it with men. She’s created a tough exterior and has just about given up on the opposite sex. She plans to spend her life alone with only the companionship of her Boxer Aggie.
When a cooed is found dead at the local radio station, Kiera scoops ace radio broadcaster Argus Nye, writing a newspaper story about a new lead in the case before his scheduled broadcast. Everyone warns Argus away from the ‘ice queen,’ but the two decide to team up and hunt the killer.
Mystery readers will love this story as a Valentine’s read. Argus is finally able to gain Kiera’s trust and takes her for a glamorous dinner at the fabled Garden City Hotel, where presidents, politicians, and Hollywood stars have dined. This classic whodunit has no end to twists and turns, and also possesses an unfolding love story.
From Chapter 3
Argus walked Kiera out of the diner and took her elbow as her heels tapped down the cement steps. Her suit was austere, yet somehow she made it sizzle. He shifted his eyes away so as not to be caught staring, but not before taking a second look. “I’ll walk you to your car.”
“No, that’s quite all right. I’ve been taking care of myself for a long time.”
“Still, lass, I don’t feel quite right.”
“This is the Tastee Diner parking lot. It’s well lit. What could happen?”
Argus rubbed his chin. “Oh all right, if you insist. I’ll say good night here.” He’d tried to be the gentleman, but she was skittish as a young filly.
“Trust me. I’m a big girl. I can take care of myself.”
Fighting against an uneasy feeling in his gut, Argus walked to his car on the other side of the lot. Since Ada’s death, he’d become overprotective toward women. Fishing in his pocket for his keys, he heard raised voices. One of them, Kiera’s.
“Leave me alone. You cheated on me.”
Argus dashed for Kiera’s car, thinking he recognized the male voice, yet he couldn’t quite place it.
“Give me another chance. You misunderstood. It meant nothing.” Paul Gregorski, sportscaster at the station, had a hold of Kiera’s arm.
A jolt like an electrical charge shot through Argus. “Let go of her if you know what’s good for you.”
Paul dropped the arm and turned to face Argus. “So, you bumped my show for your special report, and now you want my girl.”
“My relationship with Miss Devane is purely professional.” He would not allow the slightest insinuation.
Kiera squared her shoulders. “Look, Paul, I wish you well, but let’s let bygones be bygones.”
The sportscaster slanted his head toward Argus. “I don’t want to discuss this in front of him.”
“I’m not going anywhere unless Miss Devane asks me to leave.”
Kiera pivoted away from them and pulled her car keys out of her purse. “I don’t give a hoot what either of you do. I’m going home.” She slid behind the wheel of the Pontiac, backed out of her spot, and gunned it out of the lot.
Argus watched her signal light flash a right. She made the turn and her taillights disappeared into the twilight. He laughed aloud.
Paul growled. “What’s so funny?”
Argus shook his head and walked to his DeSoto, got in, and put the key in the ignition, but didn’t turn it on. She’d never be mistaken for a Carmelite nun. Not in a million years. Blunt, not soft and feminine like his Ada had been. And where’d Kiera get that short Betty Boop hair-do? Not his style at all. No Sir. Where Ada was a sensitive and godly woman, this one was so hardboiled he couldn’t imagine her on her knees praying. So, why was she so captivating?
Barnes and Noble/Nook. http://bit.ly/1euVanJ
Like so many writers, Nike Chillemi started writing at a very young age. She still has the Crayola, fully illustrated book she penned (colored might be more accurate) as a little girl about her then off-the-chart love of horses. Today, you might call her a crime fictionista. Her passion is crime fiction. She likes her bad guys really bad and her good guys smarter and better.
Nike is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and is its Chairman, a reader’s choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She writes book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. She was an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category and a judge in the 2011 and 2012 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories. Her four novel Sanctuary Point series, set in the mid-1940s has won awards and garnered critical acclaim. Her new contemporary novel, HARMFUL INTENT, is scheduled to release in the spring of 2014.
She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers (Ning). https://nikechillemi.wordpress.com/