Handbags, Books...Whatever

Handbags, Books...Whatever (http://www.vickibatman.blogspot.com) is the website of Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction. Handbag lover. Avid Jazzerciser. Mahjong player. Yoga practioner. Movie fan. Book devourer. Chocaholic. Best Mom ever. And adores Handsome.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Handbag & Book: guest author Jean Rabe - I love Dogs & her #book The Bone Shroud #pugdogs #historicalrelics #weddingtrip

I love dogs. I have three … a pug, Labrador, and a Boston terrier. The pug is the oldest, and my friends know he’s my favorite. A couple of my buddies … and fellow authors … have given me pug purses—and I treasure them because they were gifts and because they feature pugs. The picture here is of one of my pug purses and a pug coin purse. I also have pug jewelry, pug t-shirts, pug sweatshirts, and I used to have plush pug bedroom slippers, but I wore them out and could not find suitable replacements. But the pug purses … I’m often getting compliments on them.
Irem Madigan’s wedding trip to Rome turns into a desperate search for historical relics, and a struggle to stay ahead of a killer.
Irem, an archivist at the Chicago Field Museum, flies to Italy to be the “best man” in her brother’s wedding. He’s marrying an archaeologist who lures Irem into a centuries-old mystery.
Unfortunately, there are other players in the game, and some of them are playing deadly. Can she survive and uncover the ancient secrets?
One, October 4
Irem Madigan’s mistake was stopping in front of a window display.
The little gift shop not far from the Termini Station flaunted bars of starfish-shaped soap and arrangements of tiny silk roses. She peered through a beveled glass pane. The labels were in Italian and English. Inviting.
A trace of vanilla slipped out the open door, adding to the allure, and she swore she could taste cinnamon. Perhaps she’d browse the aisles and find a trinket for her mother. But this was her first day in Rome, and she would have plenty of opportunities for shopping.
Irem’s fingers danced across the smooth window grilles, indecisive a moment too long. Someone yanked her clutch away, and she whirled to see him racing down the brick sidewalk.
Ladro!” Irem took off after him. “Ladro!” Irem was not well-versed in Italian, but she’d studied a guidebook, and “thief” was one of the words that had stuck. “Ladro! Ladro!
The sidewalk was choked with people in the early afternoon, chattering in Italian, French, English; many of them with maps and cell phones in hand. It was typically warm for October, in the mid-seventies, and after the morning’s downpour the sun had come out, and with it a gaggle of tourists.
Ladro!” she shouted.
“Get him!” A man encouraged, raising his fist.
Cours vite!” That sounded French. “Attrape le!”
Cosa succede?”
“Shit and back again,” Irem cursed.
There was money in that clutch, a new iPhone, her Field Museum ID, credit cards, and the wedding invitation that had tugged her here. She was angry at the thief, and at herself. She’d read up on Italy. It wasn’t supposed to be dangerous to walk alone around Termini Station and south by the Piazza Vittorio Emanuele. Rome was safe in general. Tourists rarely reported problems … other than pickpockets. A big city girl, she should have been more alert.
It was difficult to see through the press of bodies, but the thief was tall and gangly, with a short black ponytail that bobbed above the heads of the passersby. Four blocks, five blocks. She focused on the ponytail and ran, gaining despite weaving among people so oblivious they didn’t bother to get out of her way.
A shrill whistle speared through the clamor of conversations and the scattered blats of car horns. Another whistle, then a siren. Maybe someone had called the police.
Irem’s shoes had low pompadour heels, uncomfortable to run in, but she managed. Thank God she hadn’t packed stilettos for the museum soiree. She felt the right leg of her nylons run with an annoying tickle.
“Shit,” she grumbled again, somehow sprinting even faster, slipping between two middle-aged ladies with enormous shopping bags and barely dodging a stand of party dresses being wheeled onto the sidewalk.
Six blocks, seven blocks.
Everything was a blur of color—the clothes of the pedestrians, the vibrant awnings on the old buildings, the painted brick fronts of businesses. Irem felt buffeted by scents, too: warring perfumes and car exhaust. Her senses were overloaded, but she stayed focused on the ponytail.
The tall thief darted between two buildings, and—more furious than worried—she didn’t hesitate to follow. The alley was filled with trash bins and crates piled high, the clutter making it too narrow for a car to pass through.
“Stop!” she screamed. “You son of a bitch!”
He glanced over his shoulder, and in that instant he tripped. He managed to keep himself upright, but he lost seconds. Irem closed.
“I said stop, asshole!”
Irem leaped, raising her leg, twisting, and kicking him. He staggered and she followed with a second kick that dropped him to his knees. Her clutch and a man’s thick wallet fell out of his hands, and she slipped around to stand in front of him.
“Don’t move.”
He snarled and reached to his waist, and the thought flickered that he might have a weapon. She delivered an elbow strike to the side of his head, and a palm heel blow to his sternum that put him on his back and had him gasping.
“I … said … don’t … move, you son of a bitch,” she growled.
There was no risk of that any longer: she’d knocked him to the edge of consciousness, and his head lolled to the side. It looked like she might have broken his jaw.
The sirens grew louder, then quit. She heard the slap-slap-slap of shoes against the brickwork. Irem did not look up.
“You son of a bitch,” she repeated to the thief, then attempted an Italian translation: “Tu bastardo.” She’d learned those words, too. Profanity came easy to Irem. She stopped herself from kicking him again—although she really wanted to for that satisfying sense of “good measure.” She bent and picked up her clutch.
Find Bone Shroud at: Amazon
Find Jean Rabe at: Website

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Melissa Keir said...

Such a cute purse! I can see why you love them! What a great cover too! :) I wish you all the best!

Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction, blogger at Handbags, Books...Whatever said...

Thanks for visiting today, Melissa!!

Angela Adams said...

That little face is so adorable!

Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction, blogger at Handbags, Books...Whatever said...

I agree, Angela!

klahane ridge said...

This book sounds so good - I really want to check it out! When reading a mystery, I love to curl up & drink something cozy. Really good tea or hot chocolate (from scratch!) does it for me. :)

Vicki Batman, sassy writer of sexy and funny fiction, blogger at Handbags, Books...Whatever said...

So happy you are interested in Jean's book. I'm with you on reading with a nice drink (preferably diet dr pepper), on the sofa, and maybe a box of Cheezits.

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