Kissing Asphalt (Jinx Ballou Bounty Hunter #0.5), by Dharma Kelleher

Eight stars

In this short piece, Dharma Kelleher treats her loyal fans to a brief story about how Jinx Ballou decided to start up her own bail enforcement company. A strong bounty hunter in her own right, Jinx is set to work alongside a team to capture a meth maker whose as dangerous as he is big. However, she cannot help but remember the night of passion that she shared with her boss, Conor Doyle. Her head is split between the work and her amorous endorphins, which is never good when violent offenders are on the loose. When they arrive, the capture goes awry and one of the team is shot, clinging to life. Jinx wonders if she could have been more on the game and ensured her colleague was not in this predicament. When sent out to finish the capture, Jinx realises that she needs to make some major changes to ensure her life is safe and she can stay with the man for whom she has come to develop strong feelings. A great piece and puts some things into perspective for series fans. Recommended to those who enjoy Dharma Kelleher’s work, particularly this newer Jinx Ballou series.

This short piece actually fell into my lap when I finished the second book in the Jinx Ballou series, and I could not be happier to have read it over my morning cup of coffee. While the piece raced along, I was able to learn a little more about Jinx’s backstory and how she came to decide it was time to go out on her own. The reader also gets a little hint of the early Jinx-Conor storyline, which progresses nicely throughout the series. Much like the other Kelleher short pieces I have read, this story has momentum from the outset and keeps building throughout. I can only hope that others will find it and latch on to what has been a great series, tackling issues in the “transgender-queer” realm (Kelleher’s words) and laying them out for the reader who may be interested but unsure how to ask without seeming daft. I have the third novel in this series waiting as an ARC, so off I go there, sure to be impressed again.

Kudos, Madam Kelleher, for a great piece that took only a few minutes. I am so pleased to have discovered your work!

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: