Published by TouchPoint Press on September 27, 2019
After suffering harassment and abuse at the hands of others, two women fight to reclaim their careers, romances, and lives.
Fragile but practical Shelby Stewart and ambitious, confident Astrid Ericcson just want to start their PR careers in 1980s Boston and maybe find a nice guy to hang out with. But long-buried memories of incest at the hands of her local hero stepfather keep interrupting Shelby’s plans, affecting her health one way after another. And when will she actually date someone her friends think is good enough for her?
Astrid thinks she wrote the book on How to Get Ahead by Flirting but is forced to re-visit her career advancement strategy when her boss Brad takes the innuendos to a whole new, scary level, threatening her job and her safety.
Suddenly, instead of taking charge of their lives, both women find themselves spinning out of control.
In this fast-paced story for the #metoo generation, the women reach new highs and lows in life, work and romance, while struggling to make sense of the abusive relationships that haunt them.
Describe Horseshoes and Hand Grenadesin a tweet.
Does “almost count” in more than horseshoes and hand grenades? Two young women learn it does in this #MeToo-themed, coming-of-age novel set in a Boston PR agency.
Can you tell us something we would be surprised to learn about your two main characters, Shelby and Astrid?
They have more in common than they think when they start out as enemies at work. Shelby is a practical, no-nonsense lover of alternative music and partying. Astrid is a confident and ambitious “ice queen”.
Also, readers might be surprised and amused or appalled by Shelby’s behavior as she struggles with her personal demons but you’ll have to read the book to learn how low she goes…
What inspired you to write Horseshoes and Hand Grenades?
Watching the news coverage of Harvey Weinstein spurred me on to write a novel that answers the annoying questions society asks of sexual abuse and harassment victims that it doesn’t ask victims of other crimes: Was it really so bad? Was it partly your fault? Why didn’t you say something sooner? Why are you speaking up now – do you have an ulterior motive?
And now some just for fun:
What are some of your favorite reads of 2019?
Immaculate Conception by I.J. Miller, a whirlwind and tragic story of two young women abused by their families and society, who fight for a better life together with their newborn child. (Similar theme to my novel but completely different characters and plot.)
Lions, Tigers and Hamsters by Mark Goldstein, who shares touching and funny tales from his days as a zoo director, animal welfare advocate and veterinarian. Mark was my boss when I worked at the zoo in Boston; some of those experiences are used in Horseshoes and Hand Grenades!
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, which I read for probably the sixth time. A dark comedy that never gets old!
If we took a peek under your bed right now what would we find?
Besides lots of dust bunnies? Maybe a lost tissue or pair of undies, and lots of dog hair.
If we had an author talent show, what would your talent be?
Playing piano and singing with my sister, who plays guitar. We were regulars in the high school talent shows. We usually took a few songs we liked and turned them into a medley. J
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