Romantic Suspense and Thriller

An Inner Fire By Jacki Delecki

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Why an animal acupuncturist as an ass-kicking heroine? I’ve asked myself that question many times as I wrote my novel An Inner Fire. How did healing animals prepare Grayce Walters with the skills to solve crimes and protect a macho, hunky fire investigator?

Maybe I’ve been watching too many super heroine movies but I wanted to show my heroine’s strength coming from her inner force. There are many different kinds of power and I wanted to emphasize the feminine side. The part of the human brain labelled as feminine because it relies on intuition.

Grayce uses her intuitive ability to heal animals. Is there any more beautiful or potent force? Not so easy to write a strength that we can recognize but when written can easily become clichéd.

I always planned to write the book as romantic suspense because I love suspense and a crime to be solved. But how to link Grayce to a crime and then how to have her actively involved in solving the mystery? The answer is obvious--through a dog, a very special dog. Mitzi, is a standard French poodle who just happens to belong to the logical fire investigator.

Grayce and Mitzi bond with a common goal: protect Davis who is oblivious to the danger and can’t imagine protection from a 90 pound woman and 100 pound dog.

Here is part of the first scene of the book where Grayce leaves her calm world of animal healing and enters the murky world of arson and crime on Seattle’s Fisherman’s Terminal.

AN INNER FIRE
Grayce Walters’ left hand twitched. Her universe spun on an altered axis. Her instincts swirled. Her intuition flared.

Earlier today, a cranky feline had gouged her, a sneaky dog had nipped her, and now, late for dinner with friends, the parking gods were messing with her. Something was coming. Something strange.

Her headlights probed the mist, dissolving in the murk of Puget Sound fog. Her intuition acted like an inner GPS, directing her to the far side of Seattle’s Fisherman’s Terminal. The beams shone on a yellow heap between stacks of crab traps. A dog lay on its side, barely visible in the shadow of a fishing shed.

Stepping out of her car, she inhaled the musky smell of salt water. A horn blared from the Ballard Bridge. Grayce jumped at the sudden sound. She grabbed a flashlight and moved into the mist toward the large canine.

She knelt on the damp cement next to the Golden Retriever. Relieved to observe the dog’s shallow respirations, she released a slow breath Baxter was written in bold script on the dog’s red leather collar.

She gently ran her hand along Baxter’s inert body. Her cold fingers probed the crown of his head, locating an egg-sized lump on the back of his skull.

“Your head hurting, Baxter?”

The large retriever wagged his tail ever so slightly and then stilled.

Grayce scanned the cluster of corrugated fishing sheds. A deep foreboding flooded her senses. “Baxter, I need to get us away from here.”

She searched the waterfront, looking for the perpetrator of Baxter’s injury. The overhead lights on the docks cast an eerie halo on the boats bobbing in the black water.

Screeching hinges broke the silence. The sound raked her skin like dogs’ nails skittering across the metal exam tables in vet school. Her nervous system ratcheted into high alert.

I will be giving ebook of AN INNER FIRE