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Saturday, 25 July 2015

Blog Tour Excerpt & Giveaway - Death Unscripted, Trudy Genova Mysteries Book 1 by Marni Graff





Death Unscripted
Trudy Genova Mysteries Book 1
Author: Marni Graff
Publication Date: August 25th, 2015
Publisher: Bridle Path Press

Book Description:
Trudy Genova has the best nursing job, working as an onset and script medical consultant for a Manhattan movie studio. No more uniforms, night shifts, or real emergencies. That is, until a soap opera actor Trudy has a tense relationship with dies suddenly while taping a hospital scene—but not before pointing his finger accusingly at Trudy.

Detectives Ned O’Malley and Tony Borelli view Trudy as a suspect, and in an effort to prove them wrong, Trudy interferes with their investigation. Then a second actor dies, and Trudy realizes she’s put herself right into the path of a killer.







About the Author
Marni Graff had a successful career as a registered nurse who wrote on the side before writing full time. She has a degree in English Lit and studied Gothic Mystery at Oxford University in England. She also wrote articles for Mystery Review magazine, where she interviewed many of the authors whose work she admired.

Marni is the award-winning author of The Nora Tierney Mysteries, set in England. The Blue Virgin introduces Nora, an American writer living in Oxford. The Green Remains and The Scarlet Wench trace Nora’s move to the Lake District where murder follows her.  In process is The Golden Hour, set in Bath, England. Premiering in the next few months will be Graff’s new Manhattan series, Death Unscripted, featuring nurse Trudy Genova, a medical consultant for a New York movie studio. This new series is based on Marni’s favorite nursing job in real life.

Marni is also co-author of Writing in a Changing World, a primer on writing groups and critique techniques. She writes crime book reviews at Auntie M Writes and is Managing Editor of Bridle Path Press, an author’s cooperative. A member of Sisters in Crime, Marni runs the NC Writers Read program in Belhaven which allows writers experience reading their work out loud and getting immediate feedback.

Author Links:



Excerpt

Inside, the windowless room held a few tables and folding chairs. Nikki Olivier, the star who played Vikki Starr and was the big draw of Thornfield Place, was stirring a cup of tea, her wet hair wrapped in a towel. The star had the uncanny ability to ignore people she knew well if the mood struck her, but I’d learned to read her moods and stayed out of her way, so we’d always gotten along well. On the show for almost twenty years, the blonde had a shelf of Emmy statues at home and over that time had probably suffered every known ailment and accident the writers could conceive, including a split personality and demonic possession. It was amazing what viewers would tolerate if they liked the actor. Suspension of belief, and all that jazz.
 
Beside Nikki sat my nemesis, Griff Kennedy, but with Nikki present, I didn’t have to worry about him taking liberties again.
 
“C’mere gorgeous,” he stage whispered in Nikki’s ear and threw his arm over her shoulder. Griff sipped from his ever-present plastic Emmy cup, a relic from the one time he’d been a presenter. Covered with a plastic lid, its contents were usually some variation of adult beverage, a grownup’s sippy cup. The burly, hard-drinking actor had been a stage star in his younger days, a fact everyone he met was made aware of in the first three minutes. I know I should feel sorry for him, with his star over the horizon and all that. But after his third attempt to put a check mark by my name on his conquest list, there had been that knee incident and I’d been decidedly cold toward him. His hair-transplant plugs are obvious, his gut straining at his belt, and the thought of coupling with him, of anyone coupling with him, gives me the willies.
 
“Hello, Trudy.” Nikki deigned to be polite today and nudged Griff, who added his own “Hi there” without meeting my eyes.
 
I murmured my own greetings and read the yellow pages over--nothing I couldn’t handle—and flicked my eyes to take in Nikki and Griff’s cooing.
 
In real life Griff and Nikki are divorced, but rumor has it they are still lovers off and on. On the show, the number of times they’ve been married and divorced was too numerous to count. Today my job was to teach Griff how to fake a heart attack while the computer worked its magic to reflect a myocardial infarction on his hospital monitor.
 
Ron Dowling entered and arranged three folding chairs side-by-side into a makeshift bed, motioning Griff into position. The short, intense director scowls entirely too often and has a cocky attitude. I’m short—although I prefer petite—and too often we meet eye-to-eye when disagreeing. He likes to call me “Nurse Nancy.” After more than two years of working with him and other directors who are far nicer, I decided this is his attempt to keep me in my place, directly beneath his tiny, Birkenstock-shod feet. I tend to get touchy over men with attitudes, in positions of power or not, and have my own way of letting them know that.
 
A king to his subjects, Dowling pretended to look around the small room for me. “Nancy?” He beckoned me closer.
 
“Trudy,” I corrected for the umpteenth time, taking my place near Griff. I took his cup and placed it on a nearby shelf while he slid carefully down across the chairs.
 
“Whatever,” Dowling answered. “We’ve decided to go for a situation where Griff first feels his chest pain in the bed, stumbles out of it to the window as the symptoms progress, and we insert voice-overs with Nikki. Then he realizes he’s in trouble, turns back to reach for the call bell, but falls short of it to the floor. Alarm bells ring as the scene closes.”
 
They sure weren’t going for reality today. “What about his monitor?” I reminded Dowling. “You had him hooked up to a heart monitor in Friday’s scene and it has to show a change in heart rhythm.” Part of my job is to stay on top of this stuff. Viewers hate to see reality thrust at them by a loss of continuity. The phone calls and emails arrive in droves to PBJ when that happens.
 
Dowling scowled but quickly recovered. “He disconnects it when he gets out of bed.”
 
I squashed that one immediately. “The alarm would go off and staff would rush in.”
 
Dowling crossed his arms over his chest. This was going to be a battle of the wills and he was determined “Nancy” was not going to win. “The doctor comes in earlier and tells him he’s getting better and disconnects it then.”
 
Over to me; I shook my head. “If he was that much better, he wouldn’t be in ICU. He’d have been moved to a step-down unit--it’s a protocol matter.” I shrugged my shoulders.
 
Dowling crushed the pages of his notes while I watched his crooked toes curl in his sandals. I firmly believe someone with toes like that has no business wearing sandals without socks unless they’re playing a Hobbit in a Lord of the Rings movie.
 
Griff, who had started to doze on his makeshift bed, mumbled: “Move the bed closer to the window.”







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