In the third Mind for Murder Mystery, HEX ON THE EX, the past comes back to haunt psychologist Liz Cooper in a bitter clash with a former rival whose murder casts a shadow on Liz as suspect #1. She enlists her family, friends, and a colorful defense attorney to clear to her name, but only Liz’s boyfriend—occult professor Nick Garfield—has the key to decipher the cryptic, devilish clue the murderer left behind.
Liz’s publicity seeking ex-husband Jarret—also a suspect and no help in proving his ex-wife’s innocence—agreed to chat with Liz about the new book.
Jarret: Dinner with me tonight?
Liz: We’re here to discuss HEX ON THE EX, Jarret. Behave yourself, will you?
Jarret (checks himself out in a mirror then clears his throat): I’ll try, but we spent our best times mis-behaving. Right, Liz-Bear?
Liz: I asked you not to call me that anymore.
Jarret: Listen, Liz, I’ve done a ton of interviews. Let me set the stage. It’s a bright, sunny day here in Los Angeles, perfect weather for—
Liz: We’re doing a blog chat, not announcing a baseball game. If you intend to make this a play-by-play of our former marriage, then call the weather stormy.
Liz: That would describe your extramarital sex life.
Jarret: We’ve been divorced for four years. You still can’t forgive my few minor indiscretions from the past? I told you, nothing counted when I was on the road.
Liz: You call an affair with the next-door neighbor a road trip?
Jarret: Are we going to reheat old arguments? I thought you wanted to focus on HEX ON THE EX. Tell me—is the title a jab at me?
Liz: Maybe, though at times I swore the hex was on me, especially when you let the police accuse me of murder.
Jarret: Hey, plenty of exes played a role. My ex-pitching coach, our ex-neighbors, your ex-townhouse.
Liz: Your ex-lovers, Nick’s ex-fiancé—
Jarret: Nick? Your ex-boyfriend, the professor?
Liz: (laughing): You wish that Nick were my ex. Wrong. Nick and I grow closer every day.
Jarret: Closer to what? You dumping him to come back to me?
Liz: Wake up, Jarret, you’re dreaming.
Jarret: You were crazy about me once.
Liz: Crazy being the operating term for staying married to you for fifteen years. Look how happy we’ve been since the divorce—now we BOTH can date other people.
Jarret: If you had moved back in with me instead of clearing out the rest of your belongings, none of this would have happened. You triggered the hex when you picked up the boxes you left in my garage four years ago.
Liz: I don’t believe in hexes, but sure, blame the whole mess on me. I know a homicide detective who would happily agree. HEX ON THE EX could also refer to the silly baseball superstition you broke at Dodger Stadium. When are you going to stop letting old wives’ tales run your life?
Jarret: My rituals and superstitions help center me before I pitch. I’ll give them up when you learn to cook.
Liz: (blushing): Touché.
Jarret: I suppose your voodoo boy got a laugh out of my stress at the game. If you think superstitions are silly, why do you hang around with a guy who practices them as a profession?
Liz: Nick doesn’t practice the occult—he studies it. Huge intellectual difference.
Jarret: Is that what you two talk about under the sheets? Your intellectual differences?
Liz: None of your business. You should be grateful for Nick’s expertise. His help in finding the murderer saved your life and mine. Are there any other past lovers camping out on your doorstep?
Jarret: It’s not like I keep tabs on all of them.
Liz: All? You’re incorrigible.
Jarret: Want to screen my new girlfriends for me? I met a sexy doctor at the Encino Medical Center. I’m thinking about asking her to dinner.
Liz: I’m not going to screen your dates in advance. But give her my card. I have a few mornings open in my psychology practice. I’ll book a therapy session for her after you break her heart.
Liz: No. I’m rooting for you to fall in love with a woman who will take your breath and your wandering instinct away.
Jarret: You care!
Liz: From a lengthy distance. (She checks her watch.) Pity, we’re out of time. Thanks for the chat. Rehashing the past strengthened my appreciation for the present. I hope everyone enjoys reading HEX ON THE EX.
Jarret: I know the title refers to me. I mean, who else?
Rochelle is giving away one (1) autographed copy of HEX ON THE EX. Contest open to everyone and ends May 31. Leave a comment to be included in the giveaway. Book will be shipped directly from the author.
Meet the author
Rochelle Staab blends her fascination with the supernatural and a love for mystery in the bestselling Mind for Murder Mystery series featuring psychologist Liz Cooper and occult professor Nick Garfield. The first novel in the series, WHO DO, VOODOO? earned Agatha, Anthony, and Eureka! Best First Mystery nominations in 2012, followed by 2013 Watson Award winner, BRUJA BROUHAHA. The third Mind for Murder Mystery HEX ON THE EX was released on May 7 and is available at all retail and online booksellers.