“There was a scraping noise behind me. She had rappelled down to my ledge. She was talking, but I was a deer in headlights. I still couldn’t understand anything. She edged closer and laid her hand on my shoulder. I couldn’t move. I feared for my life.
Thinking her hand on my shoulder might cause me to lose my balance and tumble into the abyss, I emitted a warning shriek. That is, I attempted a shriek. Only a hoarse croak made it past my lips.
I knew I was about to die. I didn’t want to die, but I’d accepted that it was inevitable. Before I went, I needed to tell her.”
Excerpt from “Cutie”, Peter Stein’s debut book, released for the English-speaking audience in the fall of 2017.
Jari Styrman’s life and career are failing. As a young man, he invested everything to achieve a dream: take on the world and succeed as a computer consultant in the United States. The first years were amazing, the red carpet was constantly rolling out and the invoices he sent out were the same size as those of a rock star.
Now, a few years later, Jari is burned out. There are fewer assignments, and they are not as well-paid. The money he previously wasted on helicopter flights in Monaco is barely enough to keep his head above water.
Jari is forced to accept assignments he would earlier have rejected. The absolute low point is reached when he accepts an assignment from a sex company selling films of young girls on the internet.
After an incident at the sex company leaves him horrified, Jari abandons the assignment and goes on holiday to Italy to rest. After a couple of days he meets an amazing woman whom he falls head over heels for. The woman behaves somewhat strangely but there is nothing that particularly worries him. Instead, he is swept up in the heat of the holiday romance and feels she’s almost too good to be true.
Perhaps she is?