Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Virtual Book Tour & Giveaway: Objects of Desire (Rita Mars Thriller, #2) by Valerie Webster

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Objects of Desire

by Valerie Webster

March 11-22, 2024 Virtual Book Tour


Objects of Desire by Valerie Webster

It’s August in Baltimore City. Nothing’s hotter - until Rita Mars gets a shocking visit from the police. Her ex-partner is missing and police are relentless in trying to pin her to the disappearance. One cop in particular has made her his crusade to indict. In the meantime, Rita accepts a client who suspects someone is out to destroy the charitable foundation she works for. Rita hires a hacker named Roswell and a cyber game of cat and mouse commences. This is a high-speed chase of a read that will leave you wondering – could it happen here?

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller
Published by: Ignited Ink
Publication Date: November 19, 2023
Number of Pages: 372
ISBN: 9781952347085 (ISBN10: 1952347084)
Series: A Rita Mars Thriller, 2
Book Links: Amazon | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:


“I ain’t here to clean the house.” The person on the porch blocked the usually sunny opened doorway.

“I’m sorry?” The woman inside the house stood waiting for an answer. She was a tiny person, slim, noticeably agitated by the unexpected break in her routine.

“I brought you something.”

“I have a meeting this morning. I’m afraid I have to get ready. Maybe later.” The woman inside started to close the door, but a booted foot wedged in the frame to stop progress.

A broad hand with thick stubby fingers rested against the door. “Just take a minute.”

The woman inside hesitated, irritated, undecided.

“Promise. A minute.” The boot in the door sill stayed in place.

“Uh, ok. “The woman ran a hand through her hair. “But I really need to finish dressing for my meeting.”

“No problem.” The beefy palm touched the door but did not push. The woman inside opened her house.

The figure outside stepped in, overshadowing the home owner by almost a foot. “Nice house. I always wondered what it was like in here.”

“You have something for me?” asked the woman.

“I do.” The visitor took time surveying the foyer and living room as the two stood by the still open door.

“Can we hurry this up, I need to leave.” A trickle of sweat beaded at her temple. She glanced toward the kitchen where her cell phone lay on the counter.

“Ok, so let’s get you ready to go.” The figure’s paw snagged the woman’s arm and clutched it so that the woman’s sleeve crushed with the pressure.

“Hey, let go.” The woman pulled against the grip but she was no match. “Stop.” She dug her nails into the grasping arm.

“Let’s go upstairs.” The woman was half dragged, half lifted toward her stairwell.

“What is the matter with you? I’m going to call the police.” The woman threw all her weight away from her trapped arm trying to loosen it. “Stop,” she cried. She began to flail with every ounce of strength.

The intruder shook her head. “Now you know you don’t want to do that. We need to get you packed up and ready.”

The woman now grabbed the banister as the intruder strong-armed her up the steps. She could not hold against the brute strength of her attacker who easily drew her upward.

“Gotta suitcase?” The attacker maintained the commanding grip.

The attacker held fast while she went through the woman’s chest of drawers, her closet and bathroom, throwing clothes and toiletries into a small roll-aboard that had been in the bedroom closet. All the while, the impinged victim wrestled, clawed and dug her teeth into the arm that tightened around hers.

The woman screamed again, but the free meaty hand covered her mouth. The attacker drew out a roll of duct tape and secured the woman to a vanity chair. She then took a pillow case and made a gag.

“Get you all set up here,” said the attacker. “You’ll need stuff. Now I know this is a little bit of a surprise for you. But don’t worry, I will take care of you.”

The woman in the vanity chair bowed her head as tears streamed down her face.

“Ok, so we’ve got everything, I think.” The attacker shut and snapped the suitcase closed. “I wanna take that pillow case off your mouth but you need not to scream. You gonna be good?”

The woman nodded and her intruder unknotted the pillowcase.

“Uh, I think I should leave a note,” said the woman.

“I don’t think so.” The intruder had removed the gag, but made no move to release the woman from the vanity chair.

The woman’s eyes roved quickly back and forth as she scoured her brain for an escape plan. “People will wonder where I am and we don’t want them to know, do we?”

“That’s my girl,” said the attacker. “Good idea.”


Excerpt from Objects of Desire by Valerie Webster. Copyright 2024 by Valerie Webster. Reproduced with permission from Valerie Webster. All rights reserved.




5 stars!

Rita tackles two intriguing but very different cases.

Objects of Desire is the second book in the engaging Rita Mars Thriller series by Valerie Webster. Still, readers can comfortably and confidently step into the action here without reading book one first. (However, if you haven’t, be forewarned, you won’t want to miss it!) 

Rita is probably one of my favorite new sleuths to have come across in a while. She’s tough, sassy, and smart. She had to be to survive growing up with her father and his issues. In this book, Rita is the main suspect in the disappearance of her former partner/lover, and with the lead detective on the case having already zeroed in on her as the perpetrator, it’s up to Rita to discover what has really happened. In addition, she is looking into possible financial shenanigans at a local charitable foundation for an acquaintance and, thankfully, is not alone in tackling these two diverse investigations. She is supported in her operations by some very capable staff members and useful, friendly contacts. 

Along for the ride is Rita’s mother, Annie, who is staying with her while her regular caregiver, Sarah, Rita’s younger sister, takes a much-deserved break from Mom. Annie is slowly showing more and more signs of early dementia or Alzheimer’s, and the portrayal of her symptoms is authentic. 

The author’s writing style immediately drew me in with its fun dialogue and created the feeling that I was watching the story unfold firsthand. Descriptions of Baltimore were vivid and made it easy for me to visualize the settings. Not that it’s a goal of the book, but it sure made me want to visit the city, especially the Inner Harbor. But maybe not settle for eating Chick-fil-A while there. 

I recommend OBJECTS OF DESIRE to traditional mystery and thriller readers, especially those who enjoy a strong female protagonist.

Author Bio:

Valerie Webster

Valerie Webster is a crime fiction author whose 30+ year career was focused on developing and implementing technology applications for the purpose of criminal surveillance and tracking, information security, crime deterrence and homeland security. She interlaces her work on real cases and policing applications throughout her writing and her storytelling leads you through the shadow worlds of the criminal as well as the crime fighters. She has written two books in the Rita Mars Series: DRIVEN: A RITA MARS THRILLER is her debut novel in the series. Her second book is OBJECTS OF DESIRE: A RITA MARS THRILLER. Valerie makes her home near Boulder, CO. Learn more about Valerie and her work at valeriewebster.com

Catch Up With Valerie Webster:
BookBub - @vwebster
Instagram - @rmarsauthor
Facebook - @RMars4Hire



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1 comment:

Wall-to-wall books said...

Thanks for the great review! I also loved Rita!