You and No Other: Vous Et Nul Autre (Italics)
Dr. Raven Chinjacook, M.D. gynecologist and Native American, owns and operates the Woman''s Wellness Center in downtown Miami. As the story opens, Cbrystal Baylor is undergoing a pre-op exam. She is despondent, but not about the pending surgery. She suspects her lover is cheating on her and she threatens to kill them both as soon as she is able to confirm her suspicions. Raven listens, but gets lost in her own reverie of Willow Starfire who''d left her after a seven-year relationship with nothing but unresolved anger and a scribbled Post-it note taped to the kitchen table. Petrona Marley, a Bahamian born nurse practitioner, is the comic relief and Dr. C''s right hand. They close the office; Petrona leaves for a date with Chantal Jones and Dr. C. for the Miami Art Museum where she is cruised by a thirty-something lithesome beauty .Raven is not amused. She feels unattractive and undesirable-panics, and runs out of the museum. Dr. Koralee Fisher, the Center''s chief pediatrician and Dr. C.''s closest friend and confidant browbeats her into attending an AIDS benefit, the Black & White Ball at the Villa Viscaya. At the dance, the lovely woman from the museum approaches Dr. C. and they strike up a great deal more than a conversation. Raven finds that after five years of celibacy she is very attracted to Miss Clare Odette Duleaux, a French sculptor of international merit. As the plot progresses, Chrystal calls Dr. C. threatening to commit suicide. This time her lover has said goodbye for good. Because the Center does not have a psychiatrist, Dr. C. runs to Chrystal''s apartment hoping to stop her from doing anything foolish. Instead of an overdosed patient, Dr. C. finds a framed picture of Clare Odette Duleaux on Chrystal''s bedside table. Odette easily explains the photograph. It is one used for all of her art shows and Odette produces the flyers to prove it. She describes Chrystal as nothing more than an obsessive fan--but the plot continues to thicken. Love letters are discovered along with an engraved locket Chrystal swears Odette gave to her. Raven receives the identical locket from Odette and another confrontation occurs. Who is telling the truth? Is Odette a player with a shadowy past or is Cbrystal an obsessive stalker in need of intensive therapy? Odette denies any form of a relationship with Chrystal except for ordering flowers for her mother''s birthday party from Chrystal''s flower shop. Chrystal insists that she and Odette have been lovers for over two years and that the affair began months before Devon Caufield''s death. She also states that Devon did not die of natural causes and that Raven, herself, may be in grave danger. Chrystal believes that Dr. C. has stolen Odette away from her and threatens to report her to the AMA after creating an embarrassing scene by slapping her face in public. Odette has fame and power and dares to take chances. Chrystal just wants to be acknowledged. She also needs validation. She refuses to give up Odette, but she needs Raven to believe that she is not the one who is lying. Through many twists and turns, haunting discoveries and surprisingly plausible explanations from Odette, Dr. C. is pushed along an extremely rocky path until Chrystal goes one step too far and Odette is forced to take out a restraining order to hold her at bay. The shocking conclusion will hit you right between the eyes. The reader must wait until the final chapter to learn who is lying and who is telling the truth. Are Chrystal and Odette lovers? Were Cbrystal and Odette lovers? Is Cbrystal a severely disturbed young woman suffering from Erotomania? Or is Odette the feminine equivalent of a cad? During a holiday weekend in Key West a life is snuffed out and the truth is finally revealed.
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