Title: Watching Jenny
Author: Mary Martinez
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Known as Blade with wild pink hair, tattoos and piercings, Jenny McGregor works to keep her life private. But her self-constructed barriers are breached after she receives flowers and threatening notes signed by ‘Runner’.
Desperate to stop the threat before she goes on tour, Jenny hires hunky Detective Dan Janson for protection. Unable to catch the stalker before the tour bus leaves, Dan is forced to stifle his attraction to Jenny. They’re carried along on a dangerous game of cat and mouse from San Diego to Memphis the city of Elvis and the blues. Each day the two draw closer together. When ‘Runner’ lures Jenny away from the tour, Dan’s forced to acknowledge he’s fallen in love with the feisty singer.
Hot on Jenny’s trail, Dan soon learns ‘Runner’ is not one of the usual suspects.
Finally sitting in front of her mirror after her shower, with her hair drying in curly wisps around her face, she noticed the beautiful arrangement of exotic flowers. Frowning, she wondered who could have sent them. She reached out to touch the card, only to pull her hand back. She didn’t want to admit it, but she was frightened it might be from the same nutcase who had been sending her notes all week. She hadn’t told anyone about them, for then she would have to take it seriously, and she really wanted the problem to go away.
“Come on, Jenny girl, show some guts. You have to read the damn thing sooner or later.” She had hoped the short pep talk out loud would calm her. After a long moment of indecision, she reached out with determination, grasped the envelope firmly, and pulled it from the ribbon around the vase. Lifting the flap, she closed her eyes and pulled the card out. She didn’t realize that she was holding her breath until she read the message and let out a soft gasp.
Peek-a-boo, I see you.
You know, Blade, or should I say Jenny,
after all, we are friends; I really don’t think you should walk
in front of your bedroom window, naked, the way you do.
Although you are lovely to look at.
I’m looking forward to your next little show.
Enjoy the flowers.
This was getting out of hand. She had received a note almost every day. Someone must be stalking her. They only do that in the movies, don’t they? She would ask Rich if he had seen who had sent the flowers. She walked to the door, paused as her hand touched the knob, then sighed, returned to her chair, and plopped down onto the seat. She might be in danger. Might be? Who are you kidding, Jenny, you are in danger. That left only one person to go to so her friends wouldn’t be in danger.
Taking a deep breath, she came to a decision. She would call Collette, her mother, in the morning and ask for her help. Collette’s latest squeeze just happened to be the mayor. Jenny was sure that he could pull some strings to keep this situation with the notes out of the press. Blade—although the fans referred to Jenny as Blade, it was actually the name of the band—didn’t need the publicity before going on tour.
Sighing, she gathered her things, stood, and walked to the door. Pausing for the second time, she looked at the flowers. Then she hurried back, picked them up, and, in a snit, dumped them in the garbage with such force the can fell over, spilling flowers and water over the floor. Normally Jenny wouldn’t leave such a mess for the cleaning people, but she was too upset to pick them up. After her little tantrum, she felt better. Picking up the note that had surprisingly escaped unscathed, she finally left the room. The others were waiting patiently for her when she reached the hall so they could walk out as a group to their cars.
“See you guys in the morning.” Jenny gave Rich a kiss on the cheek, then climbed into her car. She nodded farewell to everyone after locking her door. She’d tried a service before, but she liked the independence of driving herself. As she backed out, she saw Rich reflected in the lights as he watched her drive away.
She spent the thirty-minute drive home trying to stay alert. She kept her eyes on the road with only glances to her rearview mirror to make sure she wasn’t followed. That someone might be watching her was really creeping her out. She parked as close to the elevator as she could, and looked around as she got out of the car. She held her keys between her fingers so she could jab with her fist and stick her key in someone’s eye if she was accosted in the parking garage. She hoped all those self-defense lessons would kick in if she needed them.
The walk to her condo from the elevator seemed like one of those movies where the hall kept getting longer instead of shorter. By the time she reached her door, she thought she was going to scream from the tension she was creating in her own mind. She unlocked the three locks, two of them new since the notes had started. She made sure they were all locked again after shutting her door. She dropped her bag on the table by the couch then did a quick walk through each room turning lights on, taking a minute to look in the closets. Only when she was sure she was alone and safe did she relax. Then she felt silly as she realized that, to get in her condo, someone would need her pass card. And her home being on the fifteenth floor ruled out even the most adventuresome cat burglar.
She remembered the note and went to her bedroom. Looking out her window, she surveyed the scene over the bay. It was a clear night, and she could see the lights from Seaport Village twinkling on the water. That was the reason the blinds were open—the view was spectacular. She tried to see where someone could see in. Sighing, she closed her blinds for the first time since she had moved there.
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Why is your featured book a must-read?
I love music, and this is about an artist. She is the total opposite of how she appears on the stage. I listened to Gwen Stefani in No Doubt and Alanis Morissette the entire time I wrote it, to keep me in the mood.
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Mary lives in Magna, a little town west of Salt Lake City, Utah. Together with her husband, she has six grown children, and six wonderful grandsons and five beautiful granddaughters. She loves to spend time with family and friends--she includes good books as friends!
Mary and her husband love to travel, especially to the Caribbean for relaxing, and Italy for the wine. And most recently she discovered she was Irish and Scottish, of course they had to visit Ireland and Scotland. Mary fell in love with both, but the green hills of Ireland felt like home. With the experience from the exotic places she has visited, she is able to fill her books with colorful descriptions of cities, painting a colorful backdrop for her characters. One of her favorite US destinations is New York/Brooklyn, where her beloved Beckett's live. When she visits, she can wander their neighborhoods, favorite parks, and visit their favorite pub, Putnum's.
They are avid concert ‘Ho’s’! Yes, they pretty much want to do them all. They love outdoor amphitheaters the best and attend as many during the warmer months as possible.
Mary writes mostly romantic suspense, romance, women's fiction, and she has just begun to dabble in young adult mystery. During her writing career she has been a conference coordinator, workshop presenter, and chapter president for the Utah Chapter of RWA. In 2007 she was presented with the Utah RWA service award in acknowledgment and appreciation for outstanding service. Mary has also participated in numerous library panels on writing and co-presented a workshop on writing a series at the League of Utah Writers conference.
Mary also writes as ML Foxx. This is her first jaunt into Fantasy and Sci-Fi, she loves it. It gives her freedom of choice. In her ML persona she also loves to go to the movies and you got it… Watch the Avengers, Dead Pool, among others. Something her hubby doesn't really enjoy but humors her fantasy side. You’ll see more books soon…
Mary and her husband are also enthusiastic college football fans. They have season tickets to the UTES, University of Utah Football and they tailgate every game. They love tailgating so much, that they were married at a tailgating in 1999.
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Twitter: https://twitter.com/marylmartinez @marylmartinez
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