Also by this author: 1 Step Away, A Shred of Truth, Expiration Date, Dark to Mortal Eyes
Series: Aramis Black #1
Published by WaterBrook Press on September 19, 2006
Genres: Fiction, Christian, Mystery
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"Spare your soul," he ranted, "and turn your eyes from greed...."The tattoos on his arms still reading "Live by the Sword" and "Die by the Sword," Aramis Black is ready for a fresh start. Determined to set aside his violent tendencies, he opens an espresso shop in Nashville and begins to put his childhood memories behind him. The past isn't finished with him, though. One ordinary day at the shop, a man is shot before his eyes, speaking dying words to Aramis that are all too familiar.
Aramis realizes that his path to freedom will demand forgiveness-forgiveness from God and forgiveness of others. Along the way, he must uncover the conspiracy behind a centuries-old mystery and the shocking truth of his mother's death. The question remains: Will Aramis be able to conquer his past, or will evil get the best of him?
Don’t let evil get the best of you. get the best of evil by doing good. – Romans 12:21
“Live by the Sword” – “Die by the Sword” Aramis Black’s former creed is tattooed into his hefty forearms. But he’s forsaken all of that and put his violent life in Portland behind him. He’s moved to the heartland of country music – Nashville – to live with his brother Johnny Ray, who’s fighting for his shot to be a country music star.
Aramis opens a little espresso shop and begins to put his past behind him. Better a coffee junkie than the kind of junkie he once was. But on a seemingly normal day in the shop, a man is shot and killed. His last words to Aramis: “I need the whip….Spare your soul and turn your eyes from greed.” BLAM! A dead man in his coffee shop. But not just any dead man. A dead man whose last words were a direct quote of the last words Aramis heard his mother speak before she was murdered.
Way too strange to be coincidental…especially considering that a handkerchief that belonged to his mother had arrived via FedEx earlier that day. Aramis finds himself thrust into a mystery. How does all this tie back to his mother? As the plot thickens, he unravels a centuries-old conspiracy involving a hidden treasure and one of his mother’s famous ancestors, Meriwether Lewis.
But mysteries aren’t the only thing unraveling in Aramis’s world. He’s forced to confront both his father, with whom he has a troubled past, and his uncle, who he blames for his mother’s death. And what keys do they play in the mystery? But one thing is coming out of all this. In the wake of the shooting, he has found himself to drawn to one of his employees, Brianne. Sparks fly, and the two hit it off…a budding romance in the midst of so much mystery.
Aramis isn’t the only one trying to unravel that mystery. The man in his coffee shop died for a reason. Someone wants the treasure for himself. Aramis must put together the clues and solve the mystery while keeping himself and his loved ones safe from the killer. Being thrown back into the violence of his past threatens his new-found life. Can he conquer evil? Or will evil get the best of him?
Mini Q&A With Eric
Josh: The Aramis Black Mysteries are a shift from the Senses Series books in a few major ways, one being that they are written in first person. How is it different writing from what is a more personal and limited perspective and what caused you to want to write this books in the first person?
Eric: I love writing first-person. It allows me to get deeper into the character’s thoughts, and, with Aramis, it was important to let readers see his heart of gold beneath his tough exterior. First-person helped with that. Yes, it’s a limited perspective, but it forced me to stay focused on one storyline (which I don’t always do in my other books, ha!). To this day, male and female readers alike tell me they love Aramis Black.
Josh: What is up with Johnny Ray Black and his Tabasco boxers?
Eric: Oh, Johnny Ray. Well, I wanted Aramis Black’s brother to be a humorous sidekick, one who could sometimes be the voice of reason, and at other times be the goofy guy. Johnny Ray thinks he’s a real ladies’ man, a rising country music star, and a health-food nut. The Tabasco boxers were just a funny addition to that colorful persona.