I’ve given a lot of thought to themes during the process of revising my manuscript these last several months. Every well-written story has at least one, and often more than one theme. The interesting thing about theme is that it usually doesn’t reveal itself until you’ve finished the first draft. Only in the full read-through and revision process does the author begin to see what the story’s really all about. And so it was with me.

Oh sure, I had a story concept in mind when I began: Forced by finances to work on the legal team defending an abusive ex who is charged with murdering his heiress girlfriend, a freelance paralegal sets out to win the high-profile case that will put her business on the map. But is she willing to face the truth about her past in order to win the case that can ensure her future?

When I began writing, I knew how the story would start, I had devised a deliciously twisty ending, and I even knew a couple of surprises that were going to happen in the middle.

What I didn’t know until recently was what this story is about.

Secrets and lies.

It’s about the secrets we keep and the lies we tell ourselves and others and how those secrets and lies often sabotage our best efforts, and even our own happiness.

It’s about keeping secrets to protect others … and ourselves.

It’s about lying with only the noblest of intentions … or not.

It’s about the lies we tell ourselves about why we’re keeping secrets.

And it’s about the secrets we keep in order make sure the lies are never discovered.

In the first Riley Russell mystery, family secrets threaten to unravel several of the most prominent families in Riley’s hometown. Lies between friends and lovers, sisters and brothers lead to murder and financial ruin.

I hope you’re looking forward to reading this book as much as I am looking forward to getting it into your hands. Because, as the first book ends, we learn that what Riley has uncovered is just the beginning, for she has also stumbled upon secrets concerning members of her own family. When the full truth comes out, it will change absolutely everything for her. I think you’re going to want to spend a lot of time with our girl Riley. 😉


9/11 -- When Time Stood Still
All the Cool Kids are Doing It
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