Nominated for the Anthony and Macavity Award
Evil doesn’t always live next door. Sometimes it lives right in your own home.
Eve Moran has always wanted “things,” her powers of seduction impossible to resist for those who come in contact with her toxic allure. And over the course of her life, she has proven both inventive and tenacious in getting and keeping whatever such things catch her eye, whether they are jewelry, money, or men. Eve lies, steals, cheats, swindles, and is even willing to take a life, paying little heed to the cost of her actions on those who love her and depend on her. Her daughter, Christine, compelled by love, dependency, and circumstance, is caught up in her mother’s deceptions, unwilling to accept the viciousness that runs in her family’s blood. It’s only when Christine’s three-year old brother, Ryan, begins to prove useful to her mother, and Christine sees a horrific pattern repeating itself, that she finds the courage and means to bring an end to Eve’s tyranny.
Concrete Angel centers around a family torn apart by a mother straight out of “Mommie Dearest”, and her resilient young daughter who discovers that survival can mean fighting the closest evil imaginable.
|Product dimensions:||5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Patricia Abbott is the author of more than 100 stories in print, online, and in various anthologies, including Needle Mag, The Thrilling Detective, Plots With Guns, Spinetingler, and ThugLit. In 2009 she won a Derringer Award for her story My Hero. She is the author of two ebooks of stories: Monkey Justice and Home Invasion (through Snubnose Press). She is the coeditor of Discount Noir (Unteed Reads). She makes her home in Detroit.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A story to stop your heart! This is Abbott's debut novel and it really is a punch to the chest. Read it for the story. Read it for the characters. Read it for the sheer joy of the way she puts words together. But read it.
I had to go back and look to see how long I’ve been acquainted with Patti Abbott. The date was September 2008 and it was via the Forgotten Books review club that she started. Being a newbie to the world of blogging back then, I felt privileged to be a part of something that had already been going strong. In the years since, whether it was in the comments section of various blogs or direct emails, I got to know Patti: the kind of music and movies she likes to the books she reads. And, most importantly, the types of stories she writes. She was an outlier. As ebooks and electronic publications have risen, so, too, has a certain style of writing, particularly in crime and mystery fiction. Hard-edged tales full of violence and profanity seemed to be on the upswing. Nothing wrong with those kinds of tales, but, increasingly, I found myself drawn to something different. Often, those different kinds of stories were the ones Patti told. Her tales involved the things associated with crime fiction, but with her language and style, all that stuff was muted. That’s not to say nonexistent, but subdued in such a way that let the gripping tale emerge without everything being all spelled out. A Patti Abbott short story could be hard-hitting but with a prose style that left things to the reader’s imagination. In short, an Abbott story was something to look forward to reading. Now, with Concrete Angel, we get our first Patricia Abbott novel. If you thought her gifts as a writer of short fiction were good, you’re going to think you’ve hit the jackpot with a full novel’s worth of story. The novel begins with a murder (don’t all good ones?). The twist, however, is that Eve Moran, the shooter who happened to empty all the bullets into soda-pop salesman Jerry Santini, convinces her daughter, Christine, to take the blame. No one would question a young girl who was merely defending her mother’s honor from a would-be scurrilous man. Christine, the narrator of the story, appreciates the reasoning of her mother and confesses. You might be wondering how a mother could convince her daughter to take the blame for a crime she, the daughter, did not commit. That is the true beauty of this novel. The large majority of this tale is basically Eve Moran’s story. With delicately nuanced descriptions, Christine tells her mother’s story, of how she likes things, things that typically don’t belong to her, but that Eve wants anyway. So she takes them. Over and over again. As the narration continues, Abbott unfolds Eve Moran like an onion, each layer revealing something new, each layer offering a new insight into Eve as well as Christine who can’t help but be swept up into Eve’s mindset. The definition of a page-turner typically involves lots of action, up-tempo pacing, and breathless wonder. You can’t wait to go to the next chapter—no matter that it’s past midnight on a work night—to see how the hero will get out of the new jam the author placed him in or if the killer will take out a certain supporting character. Concrete Angel is a different type of page-turner. With each chapter, Abbott draws you in and you just want to know more and more. You can’t help but keep reading. Concrete Angel is a splendid novel and well worth your time. I thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend you add it to your summer reading list.