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“A Little Gumbo in Her Face” delivers a compelling story of passion, danger and the search for one’s identity set against the back drop of the steamy vibrant city of New Orleans. From the first page the author introduces us to Manon Benoit, a strong and confident psychiatrist whose expertise in treating PTSD patients leads her on a life changing experience when she meets a handsome Creole FBI agent, Andy St. Julien, tango dancing. Their loves does not go smoothly as they have scars from past relationships. An oil rig explosion and subsequent investigation into possible domestic terrorism also puts Manon and Andy at odds because of their conflicting professional responsibilities. The book is filled with colorful, likeable characters whose lives are woven into the fabric of New Orleans. Through Ms. Faustina’s vivid descriptions, I felt I was introduced and immersed in New Orleans culture and traditions. The author’s medical background also gave me a better understanding of PTSD and other mental health disorders. It was a real treat to find such an interesting yet intelligent read. There are some books you don’t want to end and this is one of them! When I finished this book I wanted to fly to New Orleans, take tango lessons and hopefully read a new Arleen Cerbone Faustina book. Hard to believe this was her debut novel, the first, I hope, of many to come.
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