The Lover’s Tango: Mark Rubinstein
A novelist creates his story using his vision of where he wants to take his characters within the pages of his book. Becoming entangled in their lives, living out his/her own dreams or fantasies along with the characters can often create conflicts as realities become fiction and fiction becomes all too real.
A West End Village party would bring two people together in a unit and powerful way. Entering the room both Nora and Bill never expected to ignite such a powerful charge. Two people whose eyes met and who no longer were in the room but alone on the dance floor creating their own story, their own lines while dancing the Tango. Filled with emotions, anger, rage, revenge, love and even hate the Tango can take dancers to places they never even imagined. Within the pages of a novel the author creates a storyline that the characters act out, as the dancers on the floor create their own.
Nora Reyes and Bill Shaw met across this crowded room and within seconds they knew they were destined for each other. But, life takes on many different twists and turns, as you will learn when reading this powerful novel. Nora and Bill became one and as they did their lives took an amazing turn. Bill, a well-known and best selling author and Nora an actor.
As you read this novel you will learn from the onset of Chapter 2 that Nora’s life ended quite suddenly and Bill was accused of causing her death. In other words Murder! As you enter the courtroom, the judge’s chambers, hear the testimony and get the know both Bill and Nora, you the reader will have to decide whether he is guilty or not!
Nora Reyes died from an overdose of Warfarin or Coumadin. One is the generic and the other the brand and both are blood thinners. But, someone injected Nora with three milligrams of Coumadin instead of two leading to her death. As a result of the preliminary investigation Bill Shaw was their prime and only suspect as he administered the drug to her on a daily basis. But, let’s backtrack for a moment and find out more about Nora and why anyone would think that Bill would want her out of the way.
Nora and Bill had their own version of a storybook marriage, as she became his muse, editor and advisor on all of his novels and projects. Bill wrote and Nora edited and together they acted out the scenes, reworked plots that did not flow and entered the world of the characters becoming one and the same with them. Not everything remains the same and after many years of writing and working together something happened to Nora that sent her on a downward spiral. Her ability to walk, swallow and act became limited. Creating the dialogue and helping him understand the way people would speak and act in real life helped Bill become successful as an author with Nora’s guidance. But, when she began to show signs of an illness and her motor skills seemed off and her appetite waned Bill thought it was all in her head. Angry at times, leaving her to her own devices Bill often went out with friends leaving Nora alone.
Listening to her friends and the witnesses on the stand as the courtroom scenes unfold you will meet Benjamin Abrams for the defense and Sean Olsen for the prosecution. Both lawyers prepared. Both well versed in the law but one just might outshine the other. A judge that takes no prisoners and will tolerate no theatrics in his courtroom as Bill sits quietly sweating, heart pounding and not knowing his final fate. On trial for murder. A jury that seems attentive yet at times expressive. But, within this complex plot there is much more as Bill was working on a novel titled “The Assassins Lullaby.” As the witnesses and experts take the stand it become evident what a great role this novel will take. Using the novel as evidence against him it is almost convicting him before he even takes the stand. Can a work of fiction really be so close and mirror his life? J.J. Marin is the judge and the jury is in place as Olson begins by defining murder, explaining what it takes to commit the crime and that Bill Shaw acted alone, unseen with motive and means to end his wife’s life. You see, Nora was diagnosed with MS and his life as a writer was over and a new one as caregiver began.
Listen to the testimony and then hear Bill’s innermost thoughts and wishes. Take a step back as he transgresses into his own thoughts, thinks about some of the witnesses that are on the stand and his feelings for other women become apparent. Constance Manning’s husband was in a nursing home. Nora was becoming an invalid and could no longer go out. An aide hired and needing to continue writing his novel, he met Constance for coffee at Starbucks. As Olson questions her it’s apparent that they are just friends but will or did it go further? Innuendos, hidden meanings and betrayals are revealed not only by the lawyers but as Bill reveals more of his innermost thoughts during the trial and while alone.
Nora became helpless, tired, and moody and he felt no longer the woman he married. Author Mark Rubenstein takes us deep inside his mind, listening to his thoughts, rationalizing his behavior as we the reading jury decides guilty or not guilty!
The research is extensive into the side effects of Coumadin and the contradictions that many might endure while taking this medicine. What happens if you overdose? The causes of bruising, black and blues and what happens when you take prednisone, Lopressor and other medications along with it. As Olson twists words, thoughts and relates what he thinks the jury needs to hear about Bill, Ben acts quickly to countermand the testimony heard. One witness just might be the one to take him down as the evidence is revealed as to what websites he visited, how it related to her death and the novel he was writing for Nora. Websites dealing with poisons, toxins, murder and how to commit the perfect one, undetected substances, tainted shellfish toxins and much more are just some of the websites Bill sought to research information for his novel. Throughout the novel the author includes brief scenes from the Assassins Lullaby making the reader think long and hard as to whether this plot did mirror the one in his life. As Mr. Chang reads off the emails he sent, the sites he visited you the reading jury will decide whether it was for the novel or for some other purpose. Listen to Ben’s questions and decide which side you are on. As a simple Physician’s Desk Reference book aids doctors and one strong witness named Pauling in defining the drugs that Nora took, the extensive side effects, the effect and result of taking too much and the end result her death.
Two lawyers doing their own special tango in the courtroom and creating tension, fear, anger and a story of their own as each one takes center stage, bears it all and only one winner will be decided. Author Mark Rubinstein includes the stages of a person’s grief, the definition of ambivalence and the true meaning of the word caregiver or caring. Did Bill resent Nora? Did it come to point that he wished she were gone? Did his innermost thoughts and desire want someone else? What is fiction? What is fact? What happens when he takes the stand? Will he survive the hot seat? Will he breakdown? When the truth is revealed and the verdict is given you the jury readers have to decide if you agree or disagree?
Bill Shaw: The author shows many different sides of this man. Was he really sad she died? Did he give her the lethal dose? Is he guilty of murder? The Lover’s Tango: If this were a contest and the final outcome would be whose dance and movements and words were the strongest: Whose Tango would you vote for? Whose dance wins? Once again author Mark Rubinstein takes readers inside the mind of his main character, leads us in many different directions hoping that we the jury reader will come to the same conclusion as the jury when they enter the courtroom and say……….! You decide!
Fran Lewis: Just reviews