Romana weaves a convoluted tale comprised of multiple threads including, friendship, deep personal issues seated in a less than happy teen aged violation, cult mentality, and even romance, in addition to the major theme of the corporate chicanery, espionage and greed within the pharmaceutical industry
Maria Romana’s Little Miss Straight Lace set in North Carolina introduces readers to biostatistician Josie Natale and the world of pharmaceutical data research and pharmaceuticals created for introduction to the public.
Fortunes can be made or lost all at the results of the research data and the honesty of those who are checking and depending upon those results.
Set in the Research Triangle Park area of North Carolina Little Miss Straight Lace opens as Shawn McKenna, Dr McKenna that is, scientist, Hormonal Product Division, eyes the Warriors of God in Christ email. Wasn’t the first one. All carry a threat.
Independent contractor Josie Natale, is a no nonsense, dedicated scientist who will search out and report any and all aberrant research data, she owes allegiance to the public who will ultimately be the recipients of the medications being tested, to herself and to no company. This dedication while causing her to be highly respected by most and widely sought after by many, has not made her too popular with those who attempt to seek a shortened path to FDA approval.
Josie, her best friend Maggie McKenna and Shawn have known and respected one another’s work for years. Shawn knows something has happened between Gary Goldman of Goldman pharmaceuticals and Josie, but he does not know exactly what it is. That it likely centers on Josie, her unswerving dedication to her research and her honesty Shawn is pretty certain.
When Progestilone data begins to show a sudden side affect increase from computers housed in a wide variety of offices and locations Josie smells a rat.
Unmarried Josie tries to balance her work, the good hearted meddling of Maggie, and others including Dr Toral and his wife who are producing some of the research data trials through their women’s clinic, as they strive to introduce Josie to marriageable males, and, her current boy friend Henry Clarkston, a slight fellow whom Maggie detests.
The sudden attack upon Dianna McKenna O’Shea working alone, after hours at Triangle Women’s Medical Center where Progestilone tests are being conducted raises Josie’s suspicions even more.
The story heats up when RTT contracts with Chilean computer security expert Nicolas Remedian, in an effort to locate the suspected virus or whatever it is that is affecting the company computers and is causing the Progestilone data to show such strange results.
Nic quickly becomes acquainted with, and then, very friendly with the McKenna’s and Josie herself as the search into the source of the data problem continues.
Psychologist Robert Prescott, specializing in cults and other anomalous groups, the Latta Lakes Country Club, a shadowy cult in the mountains of Virginia, a desire for revenge, a man with a spider tattoo, and a sweetheart who may not be all as appears are all part of the tale.
On the pages of Little Miss Straight Lace, Maria Romana has adroitly crafted a saga filled with more than enough deception, maneuver and stratagem to hook readers into the tale and keep them turning the pages from the first lines right down to the last paragraphs.
While Romana weaves a convoluted tale comprised of multiple threads including, friendship, deep personal issues seated in a less than happy teen aged violation, cult mentality, and even romance, in addition to the major theme of the corporate chicanery, espionage and greed within the pharmaceutical industry; the various twists and turns are handled with skill, are easily followed, and add depth and dimension often lacking in many works provided by newer writers.
Romana’s characters are portrayed with skill, each is a credible person filled with the foibles, warts and gaffs as are live flesh and blood humans. Settings are detailed, overflowing with features, elements and specificity meant to create an aura in which the reader feels what the characters feel, see what the characters see and understand the ambiance as the characters understand the ambiance.
Maria Romana’s Little Miss Straight Lace is a fast paced, keep ‘em guessing and turning the page type read sure to intrigue readers who enjoy good writing, a bit of romance, a lot of action and a downright good read for these long hot summer afternoons when sitting on the porch, sipping tea and reading, is a most enjoyable activity.
Happy to recommend Maria Romana’s Little Miss Straight Lace. 4/5 stars
Note: Not for everyone, some reference to sexual activity, and some profanity may startle the more knot in the knickers group, all others will see that the writer uses no titillation or langue that is not germane to the situation portrayed.
Reviewed by Molly’s Reviews
Title Little Miss Straight Lace
Author Maria Romana
Genre romantic thriller
ISBN 13 9781452385259
Available AuthorsDen, Amazon, Smashwords
About the author: Maria Romana began her writing career in the third grade, when a thoughtful teacher sent home a note on the back of her report card suggesting that she should pursue fiction writing, because her imaginative stories and skill in expressing them made it the only logical choice.
Romana took the teacher's words to heart and kept the dream alive, even while pursuing a B.S. in mathematics and an MBA, which led to twenty years of writing as a research statistician in academia, medicine, and consumer marketing--not exactly what her teacher had in mind perhaps, but often every bit as imaginative.
At the age of 40, Romana has published her first novel, Little Miss Straight Lace. She currently resides just outside the RTP area with her husband and two children.