Talking about abuse and physical violence is such a complex and painful subject for many women that one should approach it very carefully. In my new medical romance, Rx FOR TRUST, I kept the physical violence in the back story and mentioned it sparingly.
My heroine doesn’t want to remember the past, doesn’t want to talk about it and carefully hide it from her daughter and from the man she loves. As a successful psychiatrist, she treats abused patients and projects the appearance of a strong woman and dedicated doctor. Yet, because of her inner fears, she refuses to face her past experience and deal with her problem. Olivia is so terrified about the past catching up to destroy her daughter’s peace of mind, that one little lie leads to another, and another,… until the past catches up with her.
“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” Walter Scott.
Rx For Trust is the first book in the Doctor’s Order series and will be released in three days, on December 4, 2009, by The Wild Rose Press.
Contest Awards: First Place in Central Ohio Ignite the Flame; Second Place in Heart of Denver, The Molly; Third Place in FTHRW Golden Gateway.
Short Synopsis: Olivia Crane is a psychiatrist at Cincinnati University Hospital and a woman with a troubled past and secrets by the bucket-load. Dr. Luc George, the French psychiatrist, she loved ten years ago, detests secrets. All hell breaks loose when Luc strolls into her office, with a confident smile and a perceptive eye, determined to rekindle their relationship and threatening to unravel the secrets of her thorny past. Can Luc win Olivia’s trust and love before her inner fears destroy their second chance at happiness?
By the way, I should mention that far from being a dark novel, Rx FOR TRUST is a sweet and spicy story that will make you smile, laugh and cry—the story of two psychiatrists with conflicting theories on how to treat their patients and tame their own emotions.
Here is a fun excerpt from Rx FOR TRUST.
Olivia loved her mother to death, but at the moment she wanted to scream her frustration at her beaming Mama. It was obvious Marianna Crane had fallen in love with Luc the moment she’d seen him, or more precisely at the very minute he bent over and kissed the back of her hand with an “Enchanté, madame.”
“I’m delighted to meet you, Luc. Please have a seat. Where have I put my glasses? Melissa, bring the tray of hors d’oeuvres from the kitchen. Olivia, can you serve the drinks? Luc, what can I get you?”
Mama bustled with energy, the way she always did before starting a new project. Seeing her fussing around Luc, Olivia was afraid to guess the name of the new project—her mother’s ongoing goal.
But Olivia was too tired to protest or interfere. Two hours ago, when she’d voiced her panic at the possibility of losing Melissa’s love, Luc had cut short their session. He’d told her she needed to relax now that she’d exteriorized her real fear. They’d continue next week. Olivia had been so exhausted, she’d let Luc drive them in her van.
“May I help with the drinks?” Luc offered.
“Of course. Make yourself at home,” Mama purred.
Dropping onto one of the overstuffed chairs of the old-fashioned living room, Olivia rested a moment. She liked coming home to her mother’s. The warm aroma of potpourri soothed her rattled nerves. Tonight, the garlic and nutmeg smell of Mama’s masterpiece roast emanated from the kitchen. Her mother had sharpened her tools to conquer their guest.
Olivia recognized the symptoms. Good dinner, good drinks, good stories. Luc wasn’t going to leave unscathed tonight, not when her mother wanted Luc’s heart for her daughter.
Mama turned toward her. Eyes narrowed, she signaled to Olivia to follow her into the office. “I need you for a second,” Marianna ordered with a you-failed-big-time look.
Olivia braced herself for the worst.
As soon as they stepped into the office, Mama closed the glass double doors behind her, spun around to face Olivia and pointed to the door. “This Luc, is he the French boy you dated when you were in med school?”
Mama’s scowl promised her lecture was going to be worse than Olivia had expected.
“The one you never wanted to bring home to meet your mama and dad?” Marianna propped her fists on her hips.
Olivia took a deep breath and exhaled. “Yes.” It would be a long discussion, all right.
“And you sent him packing? And you let us believe he was no good? Olivia, are you crazy or what?” Marianna snatched a chocolate from a crystal bowl and popped it into her mouth.
“Mom!” Olivia scowled and took a step toward the door.
“Oh no. I have to tell you what I think. Madonna mia, you are a great doctor, but as a smart woman…phht.” Her mother cut the air with her hand. “Any uneducated Italian girl would know that when she meets such a handsome, nice, good-mannered…” Her mother paused for a second to catch her breath and launched again. “Intelligent, famous, wealthy…” She stopped, at a loss for adjectives, and glanced toward the living room for more inspiration.
“Mom, I get your point.”
“I’m not finished. He came back. Now you have a second chance. Don’t lose it, girl. For once, listen to your mother and keep him. You understand, Olivia?” Mama threw another chocolate into her mouth and chewed on it and then clucked her tongue.
“I understand, Mama. But you have it wrong. I don’t think Luc wants to get married, and I’m not ready. I need to see Melissa settled first.“
Her mother flung her hands in the air. “Santa Maria, help me. Not ready? At thirty-five? You want to wait until you’re fifty? And sixty pounds overweight like me? Since when does the daughter marry before her mother?”
“I didn’t say Melissa should marry. Just be out of college with a good degree and settled in her career.” She smiled gently at her mother, trying to pacify her. “Besides, you know my case is special.”
“Special. Why?” Mama shook her head and slapped her thigh. “Olivia Maria Crane, do you think you’re the only girl who went through a lousy experience? It happens to many girls, but they move on. My father beat my mother every time he drank. During those days in Napoli, a woman couldn’t survive without a husband. My mama stayed with him, but I left home, came to America and met your dad. He certainly didn’t want to get married after the sad accident. I was pretty at the time. I made him change his mind.” Mama reached for another chocolate.
Olivia chuckled. “You’re still pretty, Mama. If you can only stop gorging on chocolate, you’ll be healthy too. I’m afraid about Melissa learning—”
“So what if she learns her father’s a rotten ass? She’ll hate him. Big deal. She’ll love you more for protecting her.” Her mother stood on tiptoe to pat her cheek. “Bambina, it’s a great time you think about yourself for a change. Grab him without hesitation.” She tugged at Olivia’s hand and walked toward the door. “I’ll be watching you tonight. I’ll keep Melissa out of the way, and I want to see some action.”
The book is based on the true story of a friend paralyzed by fear for most of her life. To protect her child, the abused woman distorted the truth and buried it as deep as possible. With great effort, she managed to build a successful career for herself and sacrificed love and marriage to create a happy family atmosphere for her child. Life is good in spite—or maybe because—of the few lies that embellish the painful past and ugly truth.
Here is a contest.
1- Was Olivia wrong to hide the truth from the man she loved?
2- Should Olivia tell her daughter the truth about her father?
3- Do you think the abusive father has the right to be informed of his daughter’s existence?
Answer as many questions as you want in your comments for the chance to win an autographed copy of Rx FOR TRUST.
Thank you, RJ, for inviting me to present my new book Rx FOR TRUST and to expose the emotional problems created by domestic violence and their lingering effects years after the actual abuse has stopped.
Mona Risk writes romantic suspense for Cerridwen Press:
And medical romance in the genre of ER and Grey’s Anatomy for The Wild Rose Press:
BABIES IN THE BARGAIN that received a 5-ribbon review at Romance Junkies
and Rx FOR TRUST
All books are available at Amazon.com