A dark thriller, this book is not a light read. Filled with edge-of-your-seat suspense, this intense story commands the reader's attention as it drives towards the explosive ending. Alace Sweets is a vigilante serial killer, with everything that implies and is sure to trip all your triggers. Be ready.
At seventeen, Alace Sweets turned a corner in her life, taking the wrong shortcut home from school.
Resisting the harsh knowledge her attackers will never be made to pay for their actions, Alace takes a stand. Justice must be served, and if fate’s scales are out of balance, she’s determined to set things right as best she can.
When the laws of men fail, the rules of Alace prevail.
What Others are Saying
"This book sucked me in and kept me reading straight through to the end." - Manda Mellett, Goodreads review
" WOW, I loved this book. So much. So buy it, read it. Seriously, go right now." - Jesse Roth, Goodreads review
"I loved reading Alace’s story. It’s heartbreaking, brutal but sweet and loving all rolled into one tiny body." - Raychel, United Indie Book Blog
"A very intense story with lots of twist and turns and shocking details. A must read for all those dark, gritty romance fans out there." - Paula, Sweet & Spicy Reads
From Chapter Two
“Is everything okay?” She crossed the distance between them and leaned in so Nate could kiss her forehead, something she’d noted he liked doing. She let him wrap an arm around her shoulders, drawing her close to his side before he turned so they faced Ike.
“Nothing to worry about, baby girl.” Nate’s voice dropped into the lower registers, and she shivered at a sudden memory. That was how he’d sounded just before he buried his face between her legs last night, finding that delicate balance of aggressive licking and kissing, and a fragile tenderness that had been missing from her life for a long time. I’ll miss you, big guy.
“Hey, Ike.” She offered a little wave with the hand not currently tucked into Nate’s back pocket. From the outside, it probably looked like they were a longtime couple, only Nate would know that before last night all he’d gotten access to were her forehead and fingers. She’d gently rebuffed all his overtures while keeping the door open for use when it mattered most. Like last night, she thought, keeping the smile on her face small. “What’s up?”
“Hey, Pauline. Sorry to bother you and Nate.” Ike gestured towards the front room, and Nate led her towards the couch there. “I got some bad news, honey.” Tipping her head to one side, she settled next to Nate, letting him hold her close. She rested one palm on his thick thigh, allowing her fingers to curve possessively around it. “Alan Trueward, how well did…do you know him?”
Well, hell. They found him already.
She carefully didn’t let any of her thoughts show on her face. Stoicism was something she had long practiced, really since her first breath, if she were honest. All through her youth growing up in that tiny town, she’d had to hide everything inside her. All the pain and anger, the fear and loss. Getting out of bed in the morning meant sliding that particular mask into place, and she was so good at it now it was first nature, bypassing that second nature bullshit normal people lived with.
“Decent guy, he takes care of the girls.” She purposely let her smile broaden slightly. “He and April—” Alace tipped her head so she was grinning up at Nate. “—are quite the item.” Fraternization between employees at the club was frowned on, but Nate hadn’t told them to stop, which meant he probably didn’t know the reason behind it in the first place. Alace did. Alan was the entire reason she was in town, after all. Regg had sussed him out nearly two years ago, and she’d started laying plans. It’s what she did these days.
“Did you see Alan last night?”
Boy did I ever! I saw him on his knees calling out to a god who didn’t give one shit that the man was about to die. Just like Alan didn’t give one shit about those little girls he liked to rub off on when he was a teacher. Just like that judge didn’t give a shit about those little girls, giving Alan a commuted sentence because he “had such future contributions to give to society” and ignored his existing contributions to eleven little girls’ nightmares. Eleven future husbands who would have their hands full considering the woman made for them had been so abused. Alace firmly believed that every person had their one true love, and she just as firmly believed that Alan Trueward did not exist in that column for any woman, or man. God couldn’t be that cruel.
Yeah, I saw him. Saw him kneel. Saw him fall. Kicked dirt over his blood and shoveled it into the well after him. Saw the blade rise and fall, a glittering promise in every stroke seeing that taking Alan’s life was actually giving him peace, too. I promised him he’d never feel those urges again. His voice begging, pleading loudly, “I’m sick. I know. It’s a sickness.” He was sick, all right. Sick to death.
Raised in the south, MariaLisa learned about the magic of books at an early age. Every summer, she would spend hours in the local library, devouring books of every genre. Self-described as a book-a-holic, she says “I’ve always loved to read, but then I discovered writing, and found I adored that, too. For reading … if nothing else is available, I’ve been known to read the back of the cereal box.”
A hockey fan, hiker, gamer, and single mom of a special needs son, she embraces her inner geek and has been working in the tech field for a publishing company for a couple decades.
Music is a driving passion, and she says, “I love music of nearly any genre — jazz, country, rock, alt rock, metal, classical, bluegrass, rap, hip hop … you name it, I listen to it. I can often be seen dancing through the house in the early mornings. But I really, REALLY love live music. My favorite thing with music is seeing bands in small, dive bars [read: small, intimate venues]. If said bar [venue] has a good selection of premium tequila, then that’s a plus!”