Pioneer newspaperwoman Kiera Devane is on a mission to prove a woman can do a man's job, as she hunts a young coed's killer? Ace radio broadcaster Argus Nye lost one love to a murderous fiend and his pulse races as he tries to protect Kiera from herself as much as from this killer.)
Kiera was doted upon by loving parent, but they were killed when she was a girl and she was shipped off to live with a socialite aunt who had little time for her. In her aunt's house, she learned life could be cold and cruel. As a result, she grew up to be an independent and demanding professional woman.
Argus Nye, still bereft from the loss of his first love, can't understand why this female reporter is mesmerizing him. As she takes chances with her life trying to catch a killer, he's determined to protect her.
Christine: When edgy Christian fiction is mentioned, your name often comes up. What is edgy about this novel and what does "edgy" mean to you in terms of Christian fiction?
Nike: The heroine and hero in this novel aren't officers of the law. Kiera Devane and Argus Nye are news professionals hunting a killer. Since my novels are character driven, this one doesn't have the feel of a police procedural. It's more of a psychological thriller. That said, it does get into some sophisticated subthemes, which are presented tastefully. As to what "edgy" means in Christian fiction…well it's a whole lot less "edgy" than what you'd find in the general market. The romantic temperature of this novel is that of a sweet romance with warm intimacy. Yet, as Kiera and Argus chase this killer, they uncover a few unsavory scenarios which they discuss in dialog and think about internally. All this against the backdrop that love triumphs, especially God's love in us.
Christine: You started building an author platform as a "crime fictionista" long before you signed with Desert Breeze Publishing. Is there any advice you would like to give aspiring authors about marketing and promotion?
Nike: Yes. It's never too early to start building a platform. Today publishers don't have the money that was once available to merchandise novels. All authors, even the biggies out there, have to merchandise their books. The advice I'd give is take a good hard look at yourself. What you do love to write? Here's a clue: what do you love to read? For me that was crime fiction, particularly thrillers and police procedurals. I realized nobody was using the phrase "crime fictionista." So, I took it for myself and started talking online about what I love to read and write: crime fiction. And so I began establishing a brand for myself.
EXCERPT FROM PERILOUS SHADOWS
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?
Nike Chillemi has been called a crime fictionista due to her passion for crime fiction. 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. She is the founding board member of the Grace Awards and its Chairman, a reader's choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She writes book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. BURNING HEARTS is the first book in the crime wave that is sweeping the south shore of Long Island in The Sanctuary Point series, published by Desert Breeze. GOODBYE NOEL, the second book in the series released in December, 2011 won the Grace Award 2011 in the Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Thriller category. PERILOUS SHADOWS, the third in the series released in July, 2012. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers (Ning).
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