Hello lovelies! It gives me great pleasure today to host Debra Coleman Jeter and her new book, “The Ticket”! For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above.
Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $10 Amazon or Barnes & Noble Gift Card. Also, come back daily to interact with Debra and to increase your chances of winning!
by Debra Coleman Jeter
GENRE: YA Suspense
She hoped winning the lottery would solve her problems.
Her problems have just begun....
It is 1975, an ordinary year for an ordinary Southern family. TRAY DUNAWAY, like thousands of other teenagers around the country, longs to be part of the popular set at school. Tray’s mother, EVELYN, lies in bed most days with a headache, and her bipolar tendency toward extreme highs or desperate lows veers more and more often toward depression. Tray’s grandmother GINNY, who lives with the family, still grieves the loss of her husband, Brook. She believes it’s time for her to move out, if she could afford to, and find a place of her own, maybe even a new romance. This doesn’t look likely, given the state of the family’s finances.
Then something extraordinary happens. A down-and-out friend of the family, PEE WEE JOHNSON, buys an extra lottery ticket. He gives it to Tray’s dad as a thank-you for driving Pee Wee to Hazard, Illinois, where he purchased the tickets. And what do you know?
When Johnson demands his cut, Tray’s dad refuses. As Evelyn’s illness spirals toward madness, Johnson turns threatening, and Tray makes some poor decisions, what initially seems like a stroke of good fortune suddenly triggers a disturbing chain of events.
I just want to give the police my story and be done with it. But the officer insists I come to the station to make an “official statement,” whatever that is. This gives me ample opportunity to repent, to take back the words I’d forced out of my lying mouth. To admit the truth.
I squeeze my eyes shut and ask the question I’ve been dreading. “Um … can you tell me … will I need one of my parents there with me?”
There’s silence on the other end of the line. Now I’m wishing I hadn’t asked. Now I’m thinking the question makes me sound guilty. Which, of course, I am. I open my eyes slowly in wait.
“How old are you?” the voice asks.
“And you’re just coming in to tell us what you saw?”
My stomach twists in knots. “Yes, sir.”
“No. We don’t need your parents here. If you were a suspect, it’d be a different story.”
I breathe out. “No. Not me. I’m not a suspect.” Shut up, Tray. Shut. Up.
“Can you get here on your own?”
Brother. “No. There’s no way I can get down there.” A way out? Maybe.
“No problem. We’ll send a car to come get you.”
Oh, Gram, what should I do?
I can hear Gram’s answer as clearly as if she were here. “Pray about it,” Gram says.
Oh, God, should I tell the truth? Is telling the truth an “always” rule, or are there exceptions? There have to be sometimes. And is this one of those times?
I wait for God’s answer while I’m waiting for the police car. It’s a small miracle I have managed to make this call and wait this long without being busted by Lori or Julia. Perhaps that in itself is God’s answer.
I have left a brief note for them. Don’t worry. I’ll be back soon. Then I think better of the words “don’t worry.” Isn’t that a clear invitation to worry? I wad up the paper, throw it in the trash, and rewrite the note. Be back soon. Tray.
The car comes, and I hop inside, heart hammering, palms sweating. I hope no one is watching through the window, or from the neighbors’ houses, as the conspicuous-looking car pulls out of the driveway and down the street. No one except the dog who has become my friend and ally.
The two officers—both men, one tall, blond, and thin, the other balding and squatty—and I drive through town without a word between us. In the front seat, the police radio squawks a lot. I think it’s kind of cool listening to the calls going back and forth. The 10-codes, I think they’re called.
Once we arrive at the police department, the officers take me to an office past the main rooms filled with gray desks, square telephones, and stacks of files. The whole place smells of cigars and cold metal. We stop long enough for the officers to grab legal pads and paper.
“Follow us,” the tall one says, without even looking my way.
Sure, I’m invisible. I’m your star witness, but I’m invisible.
The Ticket is Debra Coleman Jeter’s first novel. It was a finalist for a Selah Award in two categories: Young Adult Fiction and First Novel. A Vanderbilt University professor, Debra Coleman Jeter has published fiction and nonfiction in popular magazines, including Working Woman, New Woman, Self, Home Life, Savvy, Christian Woman, and American Baby. Her story, “Recovery,” won first prize in a Christian Woman short story competition, and her nonfiction book “Pshaw, It’s Me Grandson”: Tales of a Young Actor was a finalist in the 2007 USA Book News Awards. She is a co-writer of the screenplay for Jess + Moss, a feature film which premiered in 2011 at the Sundance Film Festival, screened at nearly forty film festivals around the world, and captured several international awards. She lives in Clarksville, Tennessee, with her husband.
CONNECT WITH DEBRA:
Amazon Author Page:
AMAZON BUY LINK:
Debra will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.
**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase made I may receive a small commission to help support this blog. This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**
This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions. Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.