These People Are Not Normal…
So, you know that moment when you’re watching a movie and you suddenly realize you’re rooting for the one person who, in any other situation, would normally be viewed as the bad guy? For some reason or another, you either identify with his struggle or the director did such an amazing job of casting him in the role of reluctant hero, you completely accept that he’s trampling straight over the line of what is considered “acceptable behavior” to achieve his goal?
Well, when I first got the idea to write a romantic suspense featuring the revenge-for-hire business of Dirty Deeds, I knew a very good chance existed I would be flirting with that same line, especially as it related to the heroine, Eden Smith, and the subsequent characters in the following two books in the series.
On the one hand, this didn’t bother me too much. I thought…oh, come on. We’ve all been treated unfairly at some point or another. Who wouldn’t identify with hiring a team of revenge specialists to get even after they’ve been dealt a raw deal? And, on the other, I also knew I’d have to develop the characters enough, readers would love them despite their willingness to break the rules. That I would need to relate their life-defining moments in way that would make doling out a little well-deserved revenge not only acceptable, but justifiable to the reader. Get them right on board with all the trouble these people dish out. (Think the movie Hitch with a good dose of Robin Hood thrown in.)
After starting the project, I wasn’t the least bit surprised to find the characters weren’t normal. Heck, with all they’ve been through, turns out, most of them would probably be better off heavily medicated. Or, wait. *shifty eyed blink* Maybe that’s me. *shakes head* Regardless, I’ll be the first to admit these people are definitely off. But, holy crud… Did that ever make writing them a blast. I swear, I chuckled with evil glee from behind my laptop throughout every moment of dark humor they fed me.
What I didn’t expect was for them to also be so…geez, I don’t know…heroic? So brave and determined to stand up for the little guy? Or how they would go out of their way to get the job done, even if that meant risking their personal safety? *I can literally hear Eden laughing in the background.* Yeah, in typical Dirty Deeds fashion, I see now she decided not to tell me that little factoid until it was too late.
Not that it matters. Just like in the scenario above, I still love every goofy, screwball, backward way the Dirty Deeds team views the world. In fact, I’ll even go so far as to say I wish these people were real—so I could call in with the password, and hire Eden and her team to exact a little revenge on my behalf.
No, the characters in Dirty Deeds are not normal, and they honestly couldn’t give two hoots if everyone thinks that they are. But this doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want them as friends. And it doesn’t mean, if Eden asked, I wouldn’t hide one of her disguises in my bedroom closet.
I’d do it in a heartbeat. Because, normal or not…man, these people are cool.
An Eye for an Eye
As owner of Dirty Deeds, a tech-savvy company specializing in the age-old art of revenge, Eden Smith knows first-hand that secrecy is critical. But when a dead body washes up on the shores of Lake Michigan clutching her business card, Eden’s well-constructed world begins to fall apart. Apparently, she’s not the only one with a passion for payback, and staying alive to outsmart a killer has become her most important job of all.
A Game for a Game
Hardened homicide detective Kelly Riordan is convinced Eden Smith is hiding more than she’s willing to admit. Years on the force have taught him that nothing is what it seems, and that couldn’t be truer than when it comes to investigating the alluring owner of a revenge-for-hire business. But revealing her past could put everything Eden has worked for in jeopardy. And trusting a man like Riordan goes against the very instincts that have kept her alive this long.
“Nuest’s sassy, edgy, contemporary storytelling will take readers along a modern-day, high-stakes adventure. Strong tension, sizzling romance, and well-crafted suspense makes this story one that readers will not be able to put down.”
—RT Book Reviews, 4 Stars, on Dirty Little Secrets