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Character Interview - Joe


Today I'd like to introduce you to Joe, a recurring character in The Allison Lee Chronicles. An Afghan vet, Joe is a voice of experience and wisdom in Allison's quest to find Haji in The Blood of Faeries, available everywhere on February 1, 2023.


Where were you born?

I was born in Alabama roundabout Montgomery. I've only been back there twice since I joined the army. I was fortunate to have some leave before being deployed to Afghanistan for the first time. Had me some home cooking! Damn, was it good. Chicken fried steak and all the fixings.

I tell you what. I'm sure glad I saw my mama that last time. You see, the second time I was back in Alabama since leaving home was to attend her funeral. Her ticker gave out. She was only fifty-eight. I’m forty-seven, and I haven't always had what you’d call a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes, you know, lying in bed at night, I wonder how much time I got left on the clock.

What is your favorite color?

Favorite color? Right now, my favorite color is blue. I'm going on seven months sober, so that's the color of my AA chip. Can you believe that? I haven't had a pinch of alcohol in almost seven months. Seven months! Used to be I was lucky if I could go seven minutes without a sip of booze.

I'm looking forward to the day that my favorite color is bronze. That'll be the color of my chip when I'm sober for a year.

What is your dream job?

Favorite job? Man. That's a good one. That's a good one. Back in my army days, I’d say being an infantryman was the best job in the world. I ain't joking. I loved shooting. I loved marching. I loved hiking with my ruck strapped on my back.

Now, the getting shot at part? I didn’t love that part, no siree. Liked seeing my friends get shot and blown up even less. Hated that. Hated that something fierce. Still do. Sometimes I still see them dying.

I like my current job at the rescue mission. I enjoy providing food to those in need. I know what it's like to be desperate and need a helping hand. I know what a meal in your belly can do for you. There's something fulfilling about feeding the poor.

But you asked about my dream job. Well, I wouldn't want to be in the army again, but I'd like work where I could put some of the skills I learned to use. Don't know what that job would be. Maybe I'll find out one day.

What is your favorite food?

That be my mama’s chicken fried steak. Won't ever be eating that again. Sure, I can get it elsewhere, but it's not the same. Nope, just not the same.

Honestly, though, after all the years I lived on the street, any hot grub hits the spot. I always say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach.

How do you spend a typical Saturday night?

Hah. How do I spend Saturday night? I spend it up in my little apartment above the shelter, staying out of trouble. Got me a TV, one of those smart ones that lets me watch Netflix. You can stream all kinds of shows nowadays. All kinds.

"Fans of supernatural fiction will find this novel to be a wild, riveting ride." - Kirkus Reviews

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