Good Monday Morning, reader friends!
Today, we’re featuring Tyora Moody’s book Relentless Heart.
Read our interview with this amazing author below.
Interview with Tyora Moody about her book, Relentless Heart:
Alexis: What inspired you to write this book?
Tyora: When I started to outline the Reed Family Series a few years ago, I felt led with this series to start with the middle sister, Jo, in the first book, Broken Heart and then the youngest sister, Toni, in Troubled Heart.
In Relentless Heart, readers meet Asia Reed, the oldest sibling. The story revolves around her desire to find her ex-boyfriend’s murderer.
Alexis: Tell us about your story’s heroine Asia Reed. What is her motivation, passion, and mission in life?
Tyora: All three sisters have pretty strong personalities, but Asia is probably the most opinionated and loves her role as the oldest sister. She also is the most complex sister.
Asia has a passion to win, which she does in the courtroom as a prosecutor. She does have lingering doubts about her ambitions now that she’s drawing closer to forty and her desire to be married and have children consume her.
Alexis: Why is Asia relentless about not losing a case? What drives her to excel?
Tyora: Asia is definitely the classic overachiever. She grew up in a family where her father put away the bad guys as a cop and later as the police chief. It’s ingrained in her to fight for justice for victims.
Alexis: Why is Asia fighting a losing battle in the faith department?
Tyora: Asia has been bent on winning but in Relentless Heart, she runs into a wall with an investigation. The death of a young man at the hands of a police officer really hits home to her. She is also starting to experience signs of weariness at the constant revolving door of prosecuting criminals.
Asia’s mother, Vanessa, is constantly encouraging Asia to make sure she’s not running on empty by leaving God out of her life. Asia is definitely one to work weekends and let cases consume her life, which has also resulted in the burnout.
Alexis: Asia is turning 40 years old, never married and has not had children. How is this situation affecting her career and outlook on life?
Tyora: Asia’s biological clock has been ticking in her ears for a while, but she’s also been pretty busy with her career. Something about turning 40 is making her wonder if all of her “wins” in the courtroom have been really worth it. During this time her younger sister Jo is having her second child and her youngest sister Toni is engaged to be married. These changing dynamics in her close-knit family are also making Asia take a second look at her life.
Alexis: What is the name of Asia’s former boyfriend, a prominent defense attorney who was gunned down in his office? Describe the connection he had with Asia. Did they have a good relationship? How did Asia cope with his death?
Tyora: Adam Locklear is a prominent defense attorney in Charlotte. Asia really wasn’t interested in having a relationship, but she found out that she and Adam had a lot in common. Their relationship started out being a really good fit until Asia caught Adam cheating on her.
She’s never really recovered from the relationship and has enjoyed her revenge in the courtroom. Adam has never been able to win a case against her.
Asia’s lingering feelings for Adam along with her doubts about her life’s direction cause her to take Adam’s death hard. It also didn’t help that she was on her way to see Adam and she comes across the horrific crime scene.
Alexis: What is it about her ex-boyfriend’s death that jolts Asia into action, determined to hunt down his killer and fight for justice?
Tyora: Adam was a “bad boy,” but Asia knew he had a good side. She realized in the last conversation with him that he may have had something to share with her…this information may have resulted in his death.
Alexis: Who is Adam Locklear and what role does he play in this story?
Tyora: If you have the money and you’re in trouble, Adam Locklear is the defense attorney in Charlotte to hire. His clientele consists of criminals and some very shady people with loads of money. Adam’s conscience causes him to reach out to Asia. If Adam suddenly gains a conscience, then Asia knows what he has to tell her is serious.
Alexis: Describe your story’s hero Isaac Coleman. What’s he like?
Tyora: Detective Isaac Coleman is new to homicide. He recently was promoted to detective. He’s a single father raising a teenage daughter. He’s a “cool cucumber,” taking his new role in stride despite some obstacles with his new partner. Being new, he has attention for details. He also has his eyes on Asia!
Alexis: How do Isaac and Asia cross paths and how do they help each other?
Tyora: Isaac is assigned to investigate Adam Locklear’s murder. He takes Asia’s statement. He knows who she is and is kind of in awe of her. The Reed Family is well-known in law enforcement. Asia is a prosecutor, but she’s determined to stick her nose in Isaac’s investigation. He understands her need to know what happened. Both of them start becoming drawn to each for reasons beyond the investigation.
Alexis: Is there hope for a happily ever after for Asia or will she stay a single lady forever?
Tyora: Nothing is impossible with God! That’s advice I share with my real-life single family members and friends. Hopefully, when readers check out Relentless Heart, they will be enamored with Asia’s interest in Detective Coleman.
Alexis: What will it take for a man to woo and win Asia’s heart?
Tyora: Asia needs to trust the man in her life. Adam broke that trust and Asia never really recovered. She’s a strong, independent professional and being disappointed by a man only led her to be more consumed with her independence. She needs a man who respects who she is and has her back especially during the really difficult cases.
Alexis: If you could step into your story as a professional counselor, what advice would you give to Asia? Why?
Tyora: I would tell Asia that work should not be her life. She really has a counselor in her mom, but most people are stubborn about listening to mom’s advice. I would encourage her to take on other interests outside the courtroom that allow her to relax and leave her cases behind.
Alexis: Would you like to see CBA publish more stories featuring main characters of color like Asia who are strong and passionate about career and life? Why or why not?
Tyora: It would be great to see the CBA publish more stories featuring main characters of color. If CBA ever wanted to really get into the business of publishing books with main characters of color, they need to understand the various cultures that read the books. African American readers don’t mind switching to secular to Christian on their reading list. Some edginess to Christian Fiction is accepted.
I had the opportunity to be published traditionally with Urban Christian for four books. The advance was great for marketing funds and it was definitely great to work with multiple editors. I’m a graphic designer so I always didn’t necessarily care for my covers. I don’t miss the tight deadlines.
In all honesty, since independent publishing has matured it will be hard to really convince some authors to give up some of the control they have with their own work. The Holy Spirit remains my main editor and my readers accept my books regardless of the publisher.
Alexis: Thanks for the interview, Tyora! Do you have closing comments?
Tyora: Thank you for having me. I appreciate the opportunity to introduce your readers to Relentless Heart and the Reed Family series. I hope to return the series in the future and write the brothers’ stories.
*Interview conducted by Alexis A. Goring, contributor.
About the Book:
Assistant District Attorney Asia Reed is relentless about not losing a case. But she’s fighting a losing battle in the faith department. Now approaching forty, never married and with no children, a growing sense of unease has made her weary about her career and life.
When a former boyfriend and prominent defense attorney is gunned down in his office, Asia is jolted into action, determined to find out who’s responsible. Only hours before his death, Adam Locklear insists they meet about information she needs to know. Did Locklear’s death have anything to do with what he wanted share?
Detective Isaac Coleman seems to think so. Will Asia’s persistence put her in the path of a killer?
About the Author:
Tyora Moody is the author of Soul-Searching Suspense books which include the Reed Family Series, Eugeena Patterson Mysteries, Serena Manchester Series, and the Victory Gospel Series. She is also the author of The Literary Entrepreneur Series, editor for the Stepping Into Victory Compilations and Aspiring Love Short Stories Compilations under her company, Tymm Publishing LLC.
As a literary-focused entrepreneur, she has assisted countless authors with developing an online presence via her design and marketing company, Tywebbin Creations LLC. Popular services include book covers, book formatting, and book trailers.
To contact Tyora about book club discussions or for book marketing workshops, visit her online at TyoraMoody.com.