In my debut novel, “An Empty Seat,” I tell the story of Madison Mitchell, a strong, empowered woman who is starting her business day as usual. That is, until she discovers a huge amount of money is missing from the account of one of her most dangerous clients. The only person she can think of who would have had access to do such a thing is her business partner, Frank Jensen. But when she goes to confront him at his apartment, she encounters an unexpected situation.
To complicate matters, the great love of Madison’s life, Ben Shepherd, is back in town. Though she’s determined to stay away from him, Madison can’t help but be drawn in by Ben’s easy charm and good looks, flashing back to the spark and surprisingly chivalrous demeanor that initially attracted her to him.
Everything hangs in the balance for Madison, her business, her relationship and if she doesn’t come up with that money, her life. If you’re looking for a page turning thriller with a woman’s touch, you’ve come to the right place.
An Excerpt from My Novel
Having poured herself a cup of coffee, she walked into her office to start work like any other day. Without warning, however, today would be a very different kind of day, a life-changing day. She sat at her desk, drinking her coffee, and reading her emails when the phone rang. “Bay Realty and Management Company, Madison speaking.”
A familiar Russian accent greeted her in his usual abrupt manner. “Listen up, Nikolai here.”
Madison sarcastically responded to the caller and said, “Good morning to you too.” Ignoring his request to listen, she continued talking, “I was just thinking about you. I got an email from Andersen Plumbing regarding a bill. It was very reasonable and under the amount you’ve authorized me to spend on repairs, so I paid it.”
“That’s what I pay you for. Now be quiet. Connie called me this morning. She’s sending over a purchase agreement for the office complex on Oakwood. It’s an all-cash deal, and I’ll be closing in a month.”
Madison refused to lower herself to his level and cheerfully said, “That’s fabulous. I know you’ve had that property on the market a long time.”
The caller completely ignored Madison’s comment and continued with his train of thought. “I’m going to use Bernie Sharp to do the closing, a Jew, but he’s the best in the business. I’ll call you next week with the details. You need to have your bank prepared to give my buyer a cashier’s check for the two hundred and fifty thousand dollars in security deposits. I don’t want any problems closing the deal at the last minute. Got that?”
Madison quickly answered him just to shut him up and avoid the usual aggravation. “No problem, and congratulations. I’ll wait to hear from you.”
Responding back in his standard rough manner, he said, “Enough now” and hung up the phone before Madison could get her goodbye in. Madison muttered out loud, “Goodbye to you too, Nikolai,” but the sound of the dial tone drowned out her words. “And good riddance,” she added, glad to be off the phone with him.