Author: Charlie Cochet
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 60 Pages
At a Glance: A bittersweet tale from a favorite author that has all the elements I love about her writing: mystery, romance, style, history and above all, true love.
Reviewed By: Sadonna
Blurb: For the last six months, Detective James Ralston has worked the nightshift as security for the Pacific Blue Hotel, and every night at 2 a.m. his rounds lead him to the radio room where the handsome and mysterious Franklin Fairchild sits listening to waltzes as old as the hotel itself. James is drawn to Franklin, but Franklin is a man at the end of his rope, and James has no intention of getting caught up in whatever trouble Franklin is in. A heated encounter late one night sends James down a disturbing path and has him questioning everything around him, including his very sanity.
Review: Oh my! This is a delicious little nugget from Charlie Cochet that is full of surprises.
James Ralston is a former soldier and a former detective who is now in private security at a hotel in New York City that is long past its prime. The Pacific Blue no longer shines, but evidence of her former glory can still be glimpsed among the faded paint and moldings and furniture from days gone by. James patrols the hotel at night under the less than watchful eye of the manager – son of the original manager. Every night he stops in the radio room where the handsome but melancholy Franklin Fairchild listens to old music from the heyday of the Pacific Blue. James doesn’t want to offend the man, but he’s also worried that he’ll get drawn into something he doesn’t want to be if he engages with him.
Until the night that Franklin is NOT in the radio room. James gets worried and goes to look for Franklin – much against his better judgement. Once he finds Franklin, he discovers that he is more drawn to him than he ever thought. He also finds some things about Franklin quite disturbing – like the obvious abuse he has suffered at some point, which has left visible reminders. He tries to find out more about what he has uncovered of Franklin’s past, and why he’s resigned to his fate – only, he’s actually more confused by what is revealed. James is then convinced that he is losing his mind, and the more he tries to figure out what’s going on, the more baffled he becomes. He knows Franklin is the key, but he’s not sure how to resolve his questions.
I realize this review is a bit cryptic, but truly I can’t reveal any of the surprises, or it will ruin the story. Just suffice to say that nothing is what it seems and that there are reasons for what happens that are not at all apparent to James until the very end of the story.
Charlie Cochet adds some beautiful touches of old New York style and the beauty that once was the Pacific Blue, as well as her signature romantic style. Above all, this is a love story that will hopefully leave each reader with a little sad smile in the end.
You can buy Between the Devil and the Pacific Blue here: