Monday, December 8, 2014

Patchwork People by D. B. Martin Amazing Second Novel in Trilogy!

The black hole engulfed me. With no
love there could be no Kat--like there
had been no Margaret. Whatever
Margaret might have offered me, I
hadn't had the eyes to see it or the will
to accept it...

Murder, blackmail and incest -
what better way for a middle-aged
barrister to start the day?
Tipped for the top, but
anticipating the fall...

...That was the crux of it. Not blindness to potential danger, or lack of maternal concern. I was angry because of what she'd done to my childhood. She'd taken it away from me. If she'd turned into a 20th century Einstein or Florence Nightingale, my ejection would have had meaning--logic. Nurture the best at the expense of the worst. As it was it had no sense and no recompense. She was the root cause of all the troubles now sprouting like weeds around me. Bloody bitch. Bloody useless bitch! She should have never been born, never existed at all, even as an atom of a strange of chromosomes waiting to line up with their pair.
But then Danny wouldn't have existed either.
And I disgusted myself.
The brandy in the study called but I steadfastly remained where I was. Too easy to lose myself in that, and losing myself wasn't the way to find solutions, or to deal with what was. Face it. You feel nothing for her; you hate her. She was your sister, kith and kin, flesh and bone, blood and body, and you hate her. Even dead, you hate her because she has left you a lasting legacy--it not a living child, a lost past. One you can never change, never hide, never ultimately deny. You were abandoned and never reclaimed. You lived your childhood out in a children's home where your soul was abused as cruelly as your body, and that's why you can feel no remorse, no regret, no pity--nor love. It doesn't exist in you.

Patchwork People
By D. B. Martin

The second novel in Martin's Trilogy got even more exciting...and twisted! This family drama makes one of the best psychological suspense books I've read...Do read my review of the first book if you haven't already, but Martin spends a few chapters in the second book to also help bring readers up to date. But honestly, reading the first book makes a better introduction about the mire into which readers will be taken in Patchwork People. If you love this genre as much as I do, then consider this a must-read...

The newspaper had nudged
the card up against the
portrait shot of Margaret
that still adorned my desk
for appearances' sake. The
card was identical to the ones
I'd had sent out as invitations
to her funeral tomorrow. She
smile ingenuously back at me.
RIP - gone but hardly forgotten
the tricky little bitch...
I found I had great sympathy and empathy for the main character Lawrence Juste. He's a Queen Counsel of the Bar of England and has, or had, aspirations for a promotion. But that was before... Before his wife was killed in an accident. Before he was on a case for a young boy. Before he was attracted to the boy's social worker and succumbed to his desires. Before his family from whom he'd been estranged came out of the woodwork...

"Are we really in trouble?"
"It wouldn't take much. We
certainly can't have any
more unplanned expense.
Francis may be out of action
for some time so his income
stream will be nil, and he'll
need his account reserve
to cover him whilst he's not
working, but Jeremy must
have been bleeding us for
months so it's virtually
non-existent. You and I may
end up having to bankroll
him if he's off for too long.
Jeremy's broke--although
at least that may make him
stay home alone for a while,
and you are about to commit
professional suicide if you're
not bloody careful. I'm just
stuck in the middle of it all."
And then there was the fact that his legal firm was failing and he was accused of emptying the main account! By using his wife's card... Heather, one of his partners was quick to step in and call him on it, but after they had talked and he explained what was happening, she agreed to help, but not without making sure she knew exactly what was happening at all times, even trying to use her niece as one of his guards...LOL... That didn't last long, even though she had suggested if he had to, to sleep with her rather than "the little social worker..."  

"That bully is related to a judge who
provided me with the money to study
for the bar in the first place--as long as
I don't discredit him in any way. If I do,
the terms of his will enforce repayment
with compound interest over thirty years.
Move over Jeremy--I'll be bankrupt too."
I didn't tell Heather the reason he'd
provided me with it--she might be hard-
nosed and pointy-toed in her Manolo
Blahniks, but she was also squeamish -
and a homophobe. "But John Wemmick
isn't owning up to the connection.
Now, I could make it public, but then
I would be forcing his hand without
knowing why he's keeping it secret,
and that may open up another can of
worms, with me potentially one of
"Wriggling like bait on a hook."
It was Danny who was the only one who seemed "regular" people. You know what I mean... he said what he wanted to say and didn't hold back, unless he was afraid... He had, strangely, wound up in Lawrence's heart and Danny was soon the primary issue as he was trying to wade through all that was happening...

Especially, when Danny's mother was murdered. in Lawrence's house! Danny's mother? Lawrence's sister! The one he hated. 
I picked the phone up and put it straight back down. My stomach churned when I started to put together the words
and sentiments to walk the fine line I was going to have to
balance on with Kat. I already had one set of secrets
hidden from her - the possibility of being Danny's father.
I didn't add incestuously - but there it was, eating away a
home in my brain for my integrity to fall through. Now I
would also have to somehow keep from her the fact that she would be a secret herself. After our conversation at the
hospital when we first found out about Danny's
haemophilia, it had been clear she might want more than
a brief affair - a lot more. And so she should.
Because she had been picked to stay with the family, while Lawrence went into a home where everything terrible that could happen...did...

To make things even worse, he was now routinely receiving incriminating notes, warning him that it was coming soon...

The rat has had its day in court, but now the piper wants to be paid - like with all good business transactions. Honour amongst thieves, Lawrence. I'll be in touch soon. J

A spooky thing about these notes were that they were written on the funeral cards that he'd used for his wife's funeral notification! Immediately he decided that J was for his long-term enemy from school years who, wanted the money back that his father had once given to Lawrence...

But before long, there was a fire in his home, arson, and Lawrence was confused since he now had no way to even consider giving any portion of that money back. Still somebody was blackmailing him and there were certainly a few things in his past that, if they came out, could ruin his future...

And then there is Win, his oldest brother, who had been one of the boys who had started everything when he was young, had a working connection with Jiggers but who also seemed to be trying to bring the family back together, even though Lawrence couldn't really trust him.

"So who was the real murderer?'
"I dunno, but I can guess. Ask Molly - Margaret, whatever you want to call her."
"I can't, she'd dead."
"Yeah, and probably best left that way. No-one else gets hurt then."
It was inappropriate anywhere now she was dead, but infinitely so on the scene of a murder case over ten years old. But there it was - and that made Margaret a candidate for murderer too. I pulled the photo from the run of papers and forced myself to study it properly despite the mental recoil from what it represented. I needed to get used to facing unpleasant facts without repulsion if I was going to get to the truth--a truth which, no doubt was going to be far from pleasant however it panned out...

Lawrence Juste, a man who changed his name to rid himself of any connection to his former family and his tormented past, is now being forced to not only face his past but see's his present life unfolding patch by patch as pieces are torn a piece at a time from his mind. Will he be able to become the professional he has been trained to be, exclude his emotional upheavals that are hitting one right after the other, to save himself, his firm, his career--and maybe heal some of the wounds with the family members who seem to be willing to accept him back into their lives? What I can tell you is that it can only get worse before it gets better--if it does, that is... 

Kat has now proven to be patched in to the police, having turned over evidence she had promised him to keep... His older sister has died and it was only by accident that he chose to visit her that day...and received the box she had left for him, only to have it burned in his house fire...

Deeper and Deeper and Deeper. The whole book is a tantalizing tease for readers to pick apart, one patch, one color at a time. Will anybody remain once too many patches have been removed. Let me put it this way...Here's one reader who can't wait to see how this Trilogy finishes! Brilliant illustration of the psychology of people and how our minds can both conceal, reveal...and hide, even from ourselves... Amazing Novel!


D. B. Martin - Author

A Note from BRH...The copy I received was the UK version. As soon as I saw it, I thought of the beauty of body painting. So even though the US version was changed, I decided to use what I had picked out...Hope you enjoy since they complement the patchwork effect of all of us, don't you think?

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