A young woman longs for freedom; it comes at a price.
“Riley is a work of art in many ways, not the least of which is Paul Martin Midden’s ability to get under the skin of surface connections and patterns to probe not just Riley’s characters and writing, but how it mirrors her own relationship with her estranged husband Cameron and the undercurrents of her life . . . Midden excels at crafting a story that carefully juxtaposes fantasy and reality.”
--Midwest Book Review
“Midden’s subtle, complex characterizations result in a cast of well-rounded, believable characters . . . the exploration of the psychological factors surrounding [Edward’s] obsession with Riley is outstanding . . . this is a nuanced portrait of pain, rage, and slow progress toward inner peace. Takeaway: This nuanced exploration of troubled relationships and the pain of rejection will appeal to readers who want to dig deeply into characters’ minds.”
“. . . a perspicacious character study . . . An insightful examination of relationships, both loving and potentially volatile . . . ”
When Riley Cotswald, a writer at work on her second novel, finally leaves her husband, she gets way more than she bargained for. Her characters’ lives echo her own dilemmas, and she feels a kinship to them as they come alive on her desktop. Her best friend Jennifer does not understand this but loves Riley. Maybe too much.
After a particularly infuriating conversation with her husband Cameron, Riley impulsively gets involved with Edward, a socially-challenged man who had asked her out once, only to be rejected. When Riley runs into him again, she takes out her rage and frustration in a way that delights and intoxicates Edward but was a one-time event for Riley. Edward looks for ways to pursue the relationship but is frustrated at every turn. He begins to stalk Riley and then resorts to the Dark Web to find ways to retaliate against her. What follows is complicated, intense, and completely unforeseen.