Other Fires: Novel by Lenore H. Gay
Publisher: She Writes Press (October 20, 2020)
Category: Women’s Psychological Fiction, Medical Fiction
Tour Dates Oct 20-Nov 25, 2020
Available in Print and ebook,256 pages
Description Other Fires: Novel by Lenore H. GayJoss and Phil’s already rocky marriage is fragmented when Phil is injured in a devastating fire and diagnosed with Capgras delusion―a misidentification syndrome in which a person becomes convinced that a loved one has been replaced by an identical imposter. Faced with a husband who no longer recognizes her, Joss struggles to find motivation to save their marriage, even as family secrets start to emerge that challenge everything she thought she knew.
With two young daughters, a looming book deadline, and an attractive but complicated distraction named Adam complicating her situation even further, Joss has to decide what she wants for her family―and what family even means.
Pre-order Other Fires: Novel by Lenore H. GayAmazon
Barnes&Noble ~ IndeBound ~ Books-A-Million
“Once again, Lenore Gay has woven a story that captivates the reader from page one. Other Fires is a brilliant study of tragedy on multiples levels. Beginning with a dysfunctional family struggling in the aftermath of a terrible fire, she expertly peels back the layers of human behavior and motivation that unravels the lives of the guilty and innocent. Peppered with surprising twists and turns, the story will stay with you long after you close the cover.”―PAM WEBBER, author of The Wiregrass and Moon Water
“Heartwarming and dramatic, the two major intertwining stories in Other Fires reach across decades from troubled childhood to mid-life adults and reaffirm what remains human and vulnerable in all of us. The portraits of the main characters arc from hopelessness to vulnerability and a sense of recovery. Gay holds the reader’s attention from the first page.”―DIANA Y. PAUL, author of Things Unsaid
“How do people figure out their minds? This novel explores what constitutes reality, and from whose perspective. Drawing on her varied experiences in life and background in rehabilitation and mental health counseling, Lenore Gay weaves together the perspectives of compelling characters who interact in ways that keep the pages of this novel turning.”―CHRIS REID, PhD, Rehabilitation Psychology
OTHER FIRES Lenore Gay:
Adam pulled up in front of a large house for his next job. He whistled at the sight of the sprawling two-story house on a wide lot. He could never make enough money to afford anything close to this house in this neighborhood of stately houses. A silver Volvo and a black BMW were parked in the driveway; the front lawn littered with leaves and fallen branches. Why would people who could afford to live in this neighborhood have such a messy lawn?
He parked on the street and headed up the walk. Before he could ring the doorbell, a woman with long honey-colored hair opened the door. Almost his height, not thin, she had curves and a lovely mouth. He angled his head away. The contractor told him all about the damaged second floor, but nothing about this fine-looking woman.
“You’re right on time,” she smiled. “I’m Joss. Come on in. The electrical damage is on the second floor.”
“I’m Adam Werther.” He followed her upstairs, his ears felt hot. The two rooms had been recently painted white, with purple trim. The bathroom looked bare, without towels or toilet paper. With its clean, polished floors the upstairs felt empty and calm. Yet the woman’s hands trembled.
“Nice house. I suppose Fred told you the wiring might take a few days.”
“That’s fine. With extensive water and fire damage up here; the repairs have taken a while. Our guest bathroom is downstairs, in the hall by the front door if you need it.”
“I’ll have to go to the basement to check the system. Do I need a key?”
“No. The basement door’s in the kitchen. I’ll be in my room. In on the first floor at the back of the house down the main hall.”
Joss had tried to put her manuscript deadline out of her mind. With October closing in, her manuscript still unfinished. While wandering through her worries, she had an image of the electrician upstairs. She called her editor. But he was out of his office. In brief terms she explained the situation to the editor’s assistant and asked for a six-month extension. The response came as a maybe, but maybe not. The assistant would let Joss know the decision soon. Through gritted teeth, Joss explained her situation in more depth. The assistant repeated himself in a robotic voice.
Joss slammed down the phone. What a bastard. He probably had no money worries and a wife at home taking care of his kids.
She stared at the phone. Okay, if the number on the caller ID didn’t show the hospital’s number, or Terpe’s school or Geline’s daycare, she wouldn’t answer. She had to get the writing done.
Recently, she regularly spent less than half an hour visiting Phil. Let the physical therapists do what they were trained to do. When he first arrived at the rehab center, she occasionally fed him lunch. She found herself so irritated with his slow helplessness she wanted to cram the spoon down his throat. Her irritation stoked her guilt for lack of compassion. Yet he treated her like a nurse’s aide. Mostly he ignored her. When he fastened his eyes on her, he cocked his head like a bird studying another bird. Listening to her voice, trying to place it in memory? The doctors had not lied. He truly thought of her as an imposter.
An hour into writing a soft knock at her open door startled her. She glanced over her shoulder at the electrician. She stopped typing. “How’s it going?”
“Pretty good. I’ll be using the bathroom.”
“Oh, fine. That’s fine.”
“You writing a book?”
“Right,” she sighed, hoping he hadn’t heard her sigh. Annoying, yet he looked nice, quite good-looking.
“I don’t discuss my writing until I’ve finished the original draft.” Why would an electrician care?
“I don’t know any writers. Maybe I’m being too curious?”
“It’s okay, people ask.” She turned back to her computer and said over her shoulder, “It’s about mythology.”
“Books take a long time to write.”
“Obviously.” She bit her lip.
“Mythology? Like those monsters that were alive, but aren’t anymore?”
“Creatures of mythology weren’t ever alive. The Greeks made them up, invented monsters to challenge their heroes’ strength and courage. Sorry, I have to write.”
“I’m starting community college soon,” Adam said to the back of her head. “I graduated high school and began learning how to be an electrician in shop class. I apprenticed. Now I have my own business.”
Joss didn’t say anything.
“Well, you’re busy.” Adam backed out of the room.
Without any rugs upstairs, Adam’s footsteps echoed back and forth through the empty rooms.
Her phone rang, she read the number on the caller ID, and read it again. The anonymous caller? She picked up the cell and said hello. Someone breathed close to the phone. She repeated the hello and the person hung up. Almost one o’clock on a Tuesday. She pulled a piece of paper with the phone number out of her pocket. She wrote down the identical phone number again, noting the time.
She wandered into the kitchen and fixed lunch. She didn’t hear footsteps, maybe the electrician had left.
Adam strolled into the kitchen.
“I ate lunch in my truck, enjoying your tall trees and shaded front yard. I’m a city boy who lives in a second-floor apartment. Trees outside my place are stunted and I got these bars across the living room windows messing up my view. But I got big trees out my bedroom window.”
She took a bite of a roast beef sandwich. Keep your sentences short.
“My mother is missing,” he said.
“What? She’s what?” She put down her sandwich and took a sip of water.
“Two weeks ago, I went over for our regular dinner, but she wasn’t home.”
About Lenore H. Gay(c) Sasha Gay-Overstreet
Lenore Gay is a retired Licensed Professional Counselor with a master’s in sociology and rehabilitation counseling. She was an adjunct faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Rehabilitation Counseling Department for thirty years. She has worked in several agencies and psychiatric hospitals, and for ten years worked at her private counseling practice before becoming Coordinator of VCU’s Rehabilitation Counseling Department internship program.
Her debut novel, Shelter of Leaves, was a finalist for the Foreword Book of the Year award and a finalist for an INDEFAB award. For three years, Lenore has served on the Steering Committee of the RVALitCrawl, which has been featured in RVAMag, Richmond Family Magazine, and Richmond Magazine. She is an active member of James River Writers. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.
Website ~ Facebook ~Twitter ~
Giveaway Other Fires:
Novel by Lenore H. GayThis giveaway is for 1 copy each for 3 winners and is open to the U.S. only.
This giveaway ends November 26, 2020,midnight pacific time. Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.