Four years after the tragic loss of her family, newspaper reporter C.G. Harrellson is still a splintered soul. Blaming herself, she denies herself any opinions save the syndicated opinion column she anonymously writes as a release valve: Cinnamon Girl Explains It All.
Even though Detective Wolf Hunter is in the midst of trying to track down a serial killer, he can’t help being intrigued by the strange, little reporter who has been assigned to meet with him weekly to write a crime report. Despite C.G.’s initial fear of the brown eyes that remind her of her late husband and the tender touches that make her feel not just new love but old pain, Wolf patiently pulls her out of her numb, emotionless existence to start again.
Meanwhile, Wolf’s partner notices similarities between the Cinnamon Girl column and the murder scenes, sending Wolf in search of the elusive Cinnamon Girl, herself. Little does he realize, she’s as close as a kiss.
A detective, a reporter, her best friend, a cheating husband, a serial killer, Bingo…
Cinnamon Girl Explains It All
“This was a FANTASTIC romantic suspense! The characterizations were outstanding, bringing true depth to some very complex people. I cared very much what happened to them. Good pacing kept me reading way past bedtime because I couldn’t put it down.”
“Talk about a who-done-it!!! I KNEW who did it…until I didn’t! Great read….romance wrapped in a murder mystery with a perp who was totally unexpected!”
“This mystery draws you in and keeps you guessing. The serial killer could be ANYONE. The relationships among and between the characters are realistic and riveting. And the ending is action packed and surprising. I can’t wait to read it again!”
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CIR: Where did you get the idea for this mystery?
BOWERSOX: Weirdly, it was the columns in the book, and not the mystery that set me to writing Cinnamon Girl. I’m actually a pretty opinionated chick, and I had these essays I had written on various topics. What on earth to do with them? I didn’t have enough to fill up a whole book. What if I wrote a story about a columnist? And what if this column was the only place she let herself have opinions because…. because of some tragedy she blamed herself for? And then what if these columns were a key somehow to a bigger story…. a murder… a SERIES of murders? And what if there were this handsome detective…?
CIR: Did you have to do any research for the split personality and/or crime investigation elements?
BOWERSOX: You will notice that I never actually claim that C.G. has a split personality. It’s always termed a POSSIBLE split personality–nothing completely definitive. I leave it open to the idea that she just could be playing a kind of game within herself. We all at times pull a different character out of ourselves when it’s needed. And it could be that this is what C.G. does–just in a borderline personality disorder compounded by depression sort of way. But to answer the question about research, I had an interest in the topic a million years ago in high school when I read Sybil and other books on the subject. As for detective stuff, I mostly had to learn about what kinds of guns to include, as I know nothing at all about guns. And my gun enthusiast brother told me WAY MORE than I ever wanted to know. I also had a friend who worked for the Department of Homeland Security. She helped me with the airport TSA protocol.
CIR: Tell us about the differences between C.G. and Cinnamon Girl.
BOWERSOX: I tried to think of them as the two extremes of the same person. Because of the tragedy in C.G.’s life, she has basically blanked herself out. Feeling hurts, so feeling has to go. She really can’t have opinions without feelings, so they have to go, also, leaving her with a pretty flat personality. Cinnamon Girl gets to have all the opinions– all the feelings– so she loves immediately and deeply. She has sparkle and energy. She has things to say and places to go, and handsome men to try and seduce. The real C.G.–the pre-tragedy C.G.– is somewhere in between these two.
CIR: Why a romantic side to the mystery?
BOWERSOX: Every novel I write is a romance. But as far as suspense goes, I really didn’t make a conscious decision from the start to write a suspense; that’s just the story that came to me. My first novel, Interiors By Design, gets suspenseful toward the end. It was fun to write and well received by reviewers. I’m more about writing for the sake of writing than trying to guess what the reader trends are. I tend to write what I like to read, and since I love a good suspense, I’m sure I’ll come back to that genre at some point.
Learn more about Jodi Bowersox and her writing at www.jodibowersox.com