Saturday, June 28, 2014

Introducing Tom in Within the Law - Weekend Writing Warriors / #8sunday / 06/29/14

Hi! Welcome to another Weekend Writing Warrior round. Every week writers post 8 sentences on their blogs from a published or unpublished book. Then we "hop" around and leave comments on each other's snippets. Whether our work is already published or in progress, the helpful comments help us become stronger writers on our next WIP. We welcome EVERYONE's comments.

  
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Welcome to a snippet from Within the Law. The protagonist, Tom Hughes, was created in His Lucky Charm (formerly called Forgotten). Tom is cousin to the female main character in HLC. I fell in love with Tom, I think he might be my favorite hero from all of my books. His character and his history was so compelling that I HAD to write his story, one in which he has his own HEA.

The following scene is from the prologue - I didn't even need to use any creative punctuation.

He put his hand on the bartender’s wrist as she moved the open bottle towards his glass to refill.
“That’s going to be it for me, I’ve got an early morning.” He removed his hand from her wrist and watched as she pulled her slender hand away, noting the bright red of her nails. He remembered seeing red nails like that before. It was the same red as the cherry that topped the ice cream sundae you took your girl out for on a hot summer night. It was the same red as the Ruby stone that sat in a high school ring.

It had been more than eight years since he had seen that high school ring. She had been wearing it on a gold chain around her neck as she kissed him and told him she’d see him later.

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Tom gave up on ever falling in love again the day that he buried his high school sweetheart and fiancé. He started a career in law enforcement just so that he could find her murderer and rapist. Just when he is about to see justice done, he meets Alli Davis-the defense attorney for the murdering rapist who took his love from him.

an Amazon review:
Eight years after the abduction and murder of his fiancé, Tom Hughes throws back his last drink pondering the next day's hearing. Her killer had been found. Consumed with rage and wanting to confront the man who took his future away, Tom leaves the bar and stumbles upon an attractive well dressed woman named Alli whose badly bloodied her knee after twisting her ankle. Uncertain why such a woman would be found so late in a rather dangerous part of town, Tom comes to her aid. Though cautious of a complete stranger wanting to help her, Tom insists ensuring that Alli does not suffer the safe fate as his fiancé years before.

At the hearing, Tom begins to think perhaps his life can finally move on with the killer to be tried and a new woman in his life. His dreams quickly unravel when he learns that Alli is the killer's attorney. Taunted by the man as they leave the courtroom, Tom beats him so badly the killer is hospitalized and later found murdered. With his life turned upside down, Tom is now accused of murder and Alli must prove his innocence.

Chelle Cordero begins Within The Law with a great setup of murder, betrayal, and plot twists that engage the reader immediately. As I read the opening chapters, I was reminded somewhat of Scott Turow's Presumed Innocent. Cordero then takes a turn I didn't expect, and the opening story arc closes. In Ken Follet style, the novel subsequently explores the tragic sequence of events keeping Tom and Alli from being together. The novel is, therefore, less courtroom murder mystery and more star-crossed love story.

Cordero's writing and plot is engaging and entertaining. One is drawn to Tom and Alli and their story just as they are drawn to one another. The dialogue is real and crisp and the novel moves quickly. Within the Law makes a great summer beach read.

13 comments:

thepaperbutterfly said...

If she has been wearing that highschool ring for 8 years I'm guessing it evokes some fond memories. Did he remember that her birthstone was rubies, or is that something he just noticed now? It sounds kind of like he remembered it for all of these years. If so, that's cute :3 Tom seems like a nice guy from this snippet, which is my favorite kind of guy, lol. My husband is a nice guy, well, most of the time XD I like how you tied in the red color of her nails to his experiences. It really feels like you got inside of his head.

This part sounded a bit redundant, "He remembered seeing red nails like that before. It was the same red as the cherry that topped the ice cream sundae you took your girl out for on a hot summer night. It was the same red as the Ruby stone that sat in a high school ring."

I don't know if you were using redundancy for effect, or it's just redundant. If you want it to be less redundant, I might reword it like, "Her red nails brought to mind a maraschino cherry, the kind used to top an ice cream sundae, shared between lovers at the end of a hot summer night. It also reminded him of rubies, like the one in her high school ring."

You don't need to say that the red nails are the same red as a maraschino cherry (or ruby) because that is already implied. You can just say that the red nails are the same color as a . . . Well, that's just my opinion, so take it for what it's worth :$

Chelle Cordero said...

Thanks ThePaperButterfly, Tom is dwelling on his memories (the reason will come out in a future snippet) and I think I was using that redundancy to show how absorbed; but thank you, this is good to have pointed out as I don't want to lose readers. Thank you.

Teresa Cypher said...

Chelle, I really like this story premise! Wonderful!

I was tripped up at the same place that Paper Butterfly was. You could even simplify the change to read smoother by doing this: "It was the same red as the cherry that topped the ice cream sundae you took your girl out for on a hot summer night, the same red as the Ruby stone that sat in a high school ring." Just dropping the "it was" in the second reference would do it, I think. :-)

Millie Burns said...

I liked this...and I like the premise for the story. Poor broken-hearted guy.

Veronica Scott said...

I loved the imagery of the bright red, very effective, I thought! Excellent excerpt and I feel sorry for your hero too.

homecomingbook said...

The blurb suggests that his high school sweetheart was killed, rather than left him. Puts a different spin on the association with red.

Chelle Cordero said...

homecoming book, you've definitely caught the idea. Red can represent so many things.

Karen Michelle Nutt said...

I liked the snippet and got that he was lost in the moment as if the color 'red' had triggered a painful memory had taken over.

Karen Michelle Nutt said...

I liked the snippet and got that he was lost in the moment as if the color 'red' had triggered a painful memory had taken over.

caitlinsternwrites said...

I like the chain of memories, very much like what your brain does when something reminds you of something else.

Though the summary gives the answer, the question raised by those last lines intrigued me--Why does he never see her again?

Botanist said...

It's strange how some tiny detail can conjure up such deep memories. I'm guessing from the ominous tone that there never was a "later".

Charmaine Gordon said...

Don't change a word. I love the way you tell a story and this snippet is especially poignant. Red is the color of so many memories, Christmas included and blood.

Marcia said...

Evocative details, Chelle, you did a great job here. Love how the excerpt ends right at that critical spot! When I got to the end, all I could think was "awwwww, poor guy! What happened to his girlfriend??"