12.22.2006

HH Com 324

Reporter Lisa Mae Sullivan is busy recovering from steamy visits to the local jail. In “The Hit Man’s Lover,” she’s been interviewing Joaquin, a smiling, forthcoming young man who happens to have committed murder for the Border Brothers gang. After months alone together in attorney-room meetings as Joaquin awaits trial, she just ends up, well, doing him. She swears you would, too, if you ever laid eyes on the man.

Despite her intense attraction, Lisa is terrified she’s ruined what’s left of her so-called integrity—she’s practically a damn Quaker, falling for a murderer? Their affair settles into a rocky visiting-room friendship after he’s sentenced to life and Lisa wrestles with the notion of whether a killer can ever find redemption. And worse, after loving him, whether she can.

Lisa brushes such uncomfortable thoughts aside and gets back to reporting. With Joaquin’s help, she traces a thread of FBI corruption in his case that leads all the way to Washington. It isn’t long before one powerful man concocts a plan to throw her in prison, too, under the good old USA Patriot Act.

But in what may be her final days of freedom, what terrifies Lisa most is her inner journey. Because in coming to care for the young hit man, she’s staggered into that hollow place inside her, the reason she spent her career obsessed with violent men.

“The Hit Man’s Lover” is a quirky, literary novel based on a true story—my own.


These are the ones that just kill me.
There's almost enough info to make you think it's got all the right ingredients.
There's a compelling quirky voice.

It's based on a true story is always a downside these days of course, but that's another problem for another day.

But...Im getting the "I was abused as a kid" bell going off in my head and that's so overdone these days I just flat out refuse to read it anymore.

15 comments:

cm allison said...

pardon me if I do not have my facts straight, but this glared at me: I know attorney-client talks are private, but only sound, correct? Isn't there always someone watching to make sure nothing contriband is passed, or client or attorney don't kill each other? So how does she "do the deed" with a witness? I couldn't get over this one problem in my head right from the start.

Anonymous said...

It happens more than you think, trust me... especially in small counties

puzzlehouse said...

Even though it's based on a true story, I suspect this would be a much stronger book if it was presented as fiction.

I'll bet that bell wouldn't have gone off in Miss Snark's head if this had been presented as straight fiction. Even though it's based on a true story, I'd also bet it will be a stronger book if the author keeps that information to herself. She describes it as a literary NOVEL, after all, which is fiction.

Anonymous said...

As a "damn Quaker" myself... Quakers are not any more puritanical than, sya, Lutherans or Catholics. Some would say Quakers are less puritanical...

You might want to consider a different analogy. Maybe, "she's practically a damn Puritan" is more what you're looking for.

Anonymous said...

wow, I know I would read this. Something about it pulls me in...
Writer, don't give up.

Anonymous said...

Why should I read a book about a woman who doesn't respect herself? This is not a heroine with a tragic flaw; she's foolish.

dana p said...

I think you missed the mark with the "damn Quaker" remark. Given that Quakers believe there is "that of God" in everyone -- including criminals, murderers, "sinners" of all types -- they're hardly the group to be associated with intolerance. Quite the opposite, in fact.

Anonymous said...

Darn, it wasn't the 'abused as a kid' ending at all -- she was kidnapped and raped as an adult. But maybe that's the same thing?

Oh, and the Quaker part was referrring to their commitment to nonviolence, not puritanism. I was raised by Quakers.

ANyway, thanks to all for your comments, I won't mention the 'true story' stuff anymore.

Fuchsia Groan said...

I'm confused. If she's a reporter, not a lawyer, why is she having attorney-client talks with him? I know reporters do get access to prisoners sometimes, but is it unsupervised?

That said, this could be, well... steamy. It reminds me of the movie Captives with Julia Ormond as a prison dentist and Tim Roth as the con. The fascination-with-violent-men angle kind of came out of nowhere at the end. It's interesting, but maybe it could be worked in earlier?

Back in the day, before they became liberal like Unitarians, Quakers were associated with prudishness, because of their plain attire. It's an old-fashioned expression but could be appropriate if that's the character's voice...

aries said...

Anonymous #4 hit the nail on the head, the woman is just foolish. And adding that "it's based on a true story - my own" only makes me laugh even harder. What is the attraction here? Why is Lisa willing to risk her career and her "final days of freedom" (huh?) for a convict? Getting to the heart of the conflict 'might' fix this hook.

Virginia Miss said...

Author, you had bits I really liked in your hook, interspersed with some I didn't. I offer you a suggested revision:

Reporter Lisa Mae Sullivan’s interviews with the murderer Joaquin in the local jail have turned steamy. So steamy that she ends up, well, doing him in the attorney meeting room. She swears you would, too, if you ever laid eyes on the man. How could she, so committed to non-violence she’s practically a damn Quaker, fall for a murderer? Not to mention compromising her journalistic integrity in the process.

After he’s sentenced to life, she traces a thread of FBI corruption in his case that leads all the way to Washington. It isn’t long before one powerful man concocts a plan to throw her in prison, too, under the good old USA Patriot Act.

In what may be her final days of freedom, WHILE DOING OR DECIDING WHATEVER SHE NEEDS TO, Lisa wrestles with the notion of whether a killer can ever find redemption. And, even worse, whether after loving one, she can.

Anonymous said...

She loves him, that's why she's risking her career. Has hope for his redemption. And she wants to expose the FBI corruption thing, which is very nasty.

Guess I really need to work on that part!

"Final days of freedom" refers to the fact that the powerful man plans to send her to prison.

She is mixed up, so I do hope you laugh!

I'm not going to get into details explaining how they did it in the jail -- you'll have to buy the book for that LOL. I know, in my dreams...

Thanks again for reading and taking the time to give advice and ask questions.

Anonymous said...

Virginia Miss, that was beautiful!!! Thank you!!!!!!!!

Can you please write all my pitches forever??

Wow... that was very much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

If the Quaker reference is to non-violence, I think you have to make it more explicit. It seemed to me to be referring to the affair. virginia miss's rewrite makes it clearer for me...

And even then, given the Quaker beliefs, I'm not sure the analogy works. A Quaker could totally fall for a murderer, if she/he thought the murderer was reformed... er, had seen the light, if you will. It's not a slam dunk, for sure. I know at least one Quaker who did fall for a prisoner... although I don't think she actually had an affair.

-anonymous 2

Virginia Miss said...

Dear author,

You're very welcome.

Too bad I can't write one for myself! :)

Happy Holidays.