Confessions of a Deathmaiden by Ruth Francisco

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In the heart of modern-day Los Angeles, Frances Oliver practices the arts and skills of the deathmaiden. Four years of intensive training at the Institute for Eternal Living and membership in the Society of Deathmaidens have well prepared her for the role. But the woman who knows so much about helping the dying cross over is about to discover just how little she knows about life . . . when someone uses her—and all she stands for—to commit cold-blooded murder.

He’s is only a little boy, a Mexican child by the name of Tomás Gomez. Left in a persistent vegetative state by massive head trauma, he has been sent home from the hospital to die. Yet from the moment she touches him, Frances senses that Tomás is not brain-dead at all, but only too frightened of something or someone to wake up.

Elated at the possibility of bringing him out of his coma, she briefly leaves his bedside. It is a lapse in judgment that will haunt her for the rest of her life. For when Frances returns, she bears witness to Tomás’s final breath. And then, bursting in on her, a frantic doctor and his medics descend upon Tomás’s small body and spirit it away.

As a deathmaiden, Frances saw into the boy’s future. She knew that it wasn’t his time to die. Who would kill an innocent child and why? Filled with rage and aching regret, Frances vows to uncover the truth. It will be a shattering journey fraught with danger and betrayal that will take her from the sterile corridors of a state-of-the-art biogenetics lab to the dense jungles of Mexico and back. There she will learn what they never taught her in school: Instincts can fail you, passions can blind you, and evil can wear the most noble face . . .

“Prepare to be totally taken in by this book . . .a beautifully written and constructed story. It is as original as it is absorbing.” —Michael Connelly

“Captivating . . . Francisco writes with an attractive combination of matter-of-fact authority and real lyricism . . . A highly original and compassionate heroine. —Publishers Weekly

“Vivid . . .compelling . . .original.” —South Florida Sun-Sentinel

“Riveting, challenging and utterly original . . .This mystery novel reads like no other, and it’s striking for both its emotional and its intellectual weight.” —Killer Books, Independent Mystery Booksellers Association

“Fascinating . . .plenty of suspense.” —Booklist

About Ruth Francisco

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Ruth Francisco is the author of the critically acclaimed literary mysteries "Confessions of a Deathmaiden" and "Good Morning, Darkness. "She currently lives in Los Angeles.
Published July 5, 2010 by Mysterious Press. 352 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Horror, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Confessions of a Deathmaiden

Publishers Weekly

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Frances Oliver, the "deathmaiden" of Francisco's captivating if flawed first novel, helps ease the passage of the corporeal body to the other world, but only when the spirit is ready to make the journey.

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Reviewing the Evidence

That I was willing to buy into the whole (pardon me) touchy-feely aspect of this character's fictitious job, that she managed, mostly, to avoid long boring explanations of the nature of the work of the "deathmaiden" (are there no men who can do this job?) (I know, they haven't changed "midwife" e...

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