Revenge takes center stage in this story
Houstonian Jo Barrett’s second novel, “This is How it Happened,” hits bookstores just in time for Valentine’s Day. Ironically, it’s not a love story; it’s more like a chick-flick tangled inside an episode of “CSI.”
How far will one woman go for revenge? Is hiring a hit man taking things too far? Not for Madeline Piatro, who has been dumped, betrayed and pushed out of her company by her ex-fiancé. She spends the first half of the book obsessing about killing her ex and the second half having covert meetings with an actual hit man. All the while, she recalls the initial love story – thus providing the chick flick factor.
Will she conspire to kill her ex? Will she fall in love with the hit man? Will she pull the trigger? Will she actually send poisoned brownies to her former lover?
Similar situations might sound absurd; however, a brief review of local headline proves stories like Barrett’s aren’t too far from reality. Consider Clara Harris, famous for running over and killing her cheating husband in 2002. Last year, astronaut Lisa Nowak drove from Houston to Orlando, wearing a diaper, to confront her romantic adversary. Beware! Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.
While researching this book, Barrett interviewed hundreds of women with great “how I got back at my ex” stories. She does not advocate hiring a hit man: women don’t need to harm men in a physical way. They can use their minds to do much greater damage, she says.
Barrett is making the public relations circuit in New York, Los Angeles and Houston promoting her three-book contract with Harper Collins/Avon. Although small in stature, this Texan is the center of attention at most events. She’s giggly, bright and sexy, in a wholesome and appealing way. Her clean, expensive, New York style does not mask her sparkling personality. Like a gift from Tiffany’s, Barrett is the entire package: polished, dazzling and full of style. Her third book, “Inside the Loop,” is set in Houston, so be careful what you say the next time you see her at a social event.