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By: Paul Martin Midden
Publisher: Wittman Blair Publishing
Publication Date: October 2019
ISBN: 978-0-9859223-8-2
Reviewed by: Diane Lunsford
Review Date: March 12, 2020

Paul Martin Midden takes stalking to the next level in his latest body of work, Riley.

Riley Cotswald is ready for change. She finally leaves her husband and is anxious to embrace her new life. She’s working on her second novel and the words are flowing like a river. The irony to her latest project is it would seem the characters are mirroring her own life. Like most writers, she can relate and the more she connects with her fictitious characters, the more she fosters a relationship that blurs the lines at times between fiction and reality. After the most recent argument with her soon to be ex-husband Cameron, Riley throws caution to the wind and connects with Edward. Little did she know this one-time fling would deliver consequences beyond her imagination.

After the one-time dalliance between Riley and Edward, she happens to run into him some days later. While the encounter they had was somewhat memorable, the memory of Edward wasn’t so much for Riley. When Edward takes a bold step and shows up on Riley’s doorstep, not only is she appalled, but she makes it clear that what happened between them would remain forever in her rear-view mirror, it was a one-time thing and the notion of anything remotely related to a future between the two was never going to happen. Big mistake on Riley’s part. The attraction Edward has for Riley brings fatal to a whole new level.

There is a subtle nuance to Mr. Midden’s writing style that I liken to the suspense of a Stephen King novel. You know something is about to happen. You think you know what it is and wham! All bets are off and the thrill of what happens gives way to goosebumps and the immediate desire to continue forward because this just keeps getting better and better. Midden has written a book within a book given main character, Riley, is a writer and working on her next great American body of work. Midden, with precision craft, pens a stylistic back and forth between the book he has written, and the book character Riley is writing and together, the stories intertwine to make one great read. The characters are richly developed, and the dialogue is absolutely credible. The anticipation in scene set-up is superb and beckon the reader to hold on because this next turn is a doosey. This was a most enjoyable read and I look forward to Mr. Midden’s next book. Indeed, I am a fan.

Quill says: Riley is the epitome of the saying, "be careful what you wish for because you just may get it!"

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