Bad Ice by Sandra "Chumplet" Cormier
What kind of person writes "romance with a dash of suspense"? Apparently you have to be Canadian, with roots that go all the way back to 1644 when Canada was French and beavers ruled the land. Being also of Acadian, Mik'Maq and Basque descent doesn't hurt either. Except for that unibrow thing - but Sandra swears it's under control.
You must also at times imagine you're a hobbit and wander around in the woods for no apparent reason other than to pretend you're a hobbit and in need of all those maps of Middle Earth you've collected.
And it helps to surround yourself with a husband and teenagers of the geek variety, along with a dog and cat - both too pretty to be boys - while hoping to someday grow up just so you can keep a pony in your backyard.
Somehow this background gives you an astonishing ability to plop readers right into your story and make them feel like part of the action. Seriously. That's the quality about Sandra's writing the reviewers point to consistently.
In Bad Ice, Christina Mackey is thrust into the testosterone-powered world of hockey when she inadvertently prevents the murder of her idol, Jason Petersen. But as Jason's feelings for the widow who saved him grow, his past threatens not only their happiness, but the life of Christina's innocent young daughter as well.
Sandra will be posting in the comments as her alter-ego Chumplet.
For a chance to win a copy of Sandra's e-book, read the excerpt below, then answer the questions.
Jason returned his attention to the monitor. He felt a rush of relief when he learned the woman, a single mother, was only slightly wounded in the fracas and was expected to make a full recovery.
After several replays, the network returned to the live scene. The announcer stood on the steps above the players' bench. Officials still worked behind him, and a few fans remained.
“The alleged gunman was not so lucky. When arena security opened fire, he was critically wounded, then pronounced dead upon arrival at St. Michael's Hospital. Names have not been released, but it’s been reported he may have been an employee of this building. Police Services will be investigating the incident.”
Jason raised his eyebrows and glanced up at Bertie. “That’s how he got the gun in, I guess.” He shook the sweat from his hair. “Man! What a close one, huh? Who would think somebody could go postal in a hockey arena?” He finally began to unlace his skates.
“What?” Jason looked up again at Bertie’s face. His friend’s eyes focused on a point just above Jason’s head.
“Take a closer look at your lid, man.”
Jason stood and took his helmet from the shelf. A narrow groove traced along the left side of the helmet, about a half-centimeter deep and a few centimeters long, just above the gap where his ear would have protruded.
If he had been looking to the left or downward, the bullet would have penetrated his head or the back of his neck. Even if the glass slowed it down, Jason knew any impact in the temple area or the base of the skull could be fatal—or worse, career ending—whether by elbow, stick, puck, or bullet.
Jason shivered and sank back to the bench, staring with round eyes at the helmet.
“Holy shit.” He felt a ghostly tingle and rubbed the back of his head. “I could be dead right now. Shit.”
1) Which hockey team does Sandra like best?
2) What color is Jason's helmet (and why)?
3) Write a 4-line poem titled "Ode to a Hockey Puck." Please do not rhyme puck with f*** (even though we know that's all you can think to rhyme it with now).