, , , , , , , ,

With all the terror and tragedy lately, I’m pleased to review and discuss an engaging novel, rich with themes of hope, healing, and wholeness.

crumple-zone-200x300Crumple Zone, a thrilling novel by Edith Parzefall, subtly but fully embraces the message of Romans 8:28: And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.  

While Crumple Zone is a psychological suspense novel with some bad language and sexual scenes, great messages and complex, intriguing characters make this book a wonderful read.

After losing her job, Lara takes an impetuous trip to Chile. Rick, a questionable hitchhiker joins her in the rented X-Trail. The reader certainly isn’t left behind on this suspenseful, scenic ride across the Atacama Desert.

Truck-driver Enrique, losing his grip on reality, is on the same highway. A crash on Ruta 5 clears away a new route toward trust, healing, and an awakening to the difference between reality and illusion.

In Crumple Zone (and her other books), Author Edith Parzefall successfully brings an admirable depth to her writing. The novel beautifully reveals how a higher power leads people in the right directions, at the right times. The characters aren’t do-gooders set out to save the world; they are flawed people. Difficult situations force them to think outside of themselves and make choices that ultimately bring peace into their lives. And like in real life, characters who choose to remain in their selfish worlds, get left behind to their own devices. I totally recommend Crumple Zone.

Crumple Zone is a read that will stick with you for a long time. I wiped away tears before clicking off my Kindle. Thanks Edith!

EdithParzefall-AtacamaAuthor Edith Parzefall based Crumple Zone on a real accident. In 2008 she visited Chile, supposedly the safest country in South America. Stopped at a red light in their rented SUV, she and her partner were sandwiched between two trucks on the Pan-American highway. An unplanned excursion to the local hospital and the Carabineros de Chile allowed her insights she never meant to gain but wouldn’t want to miss. A new story idea sparked: Crumple Zone

Edith told me that the accident always felt like the hand of God gently rubbing her off errant tracks that made her unhappy and filled with more and more purposelessness. She really brings that into the novel.

Edith studied literature and linguistics in Germany and the United States, worked as an editor, technical writer, team leader and project manager. Now a full-time writer, she strives to combine her two passions: writing and traveling.

Below is a sample chapter from Crumple Zone with photos from Edith’s trip to Chile.


Lara parked at the lighthouse in La Serena. They climbed out and walked along the beach, enjoying the gentle morning sun.


The night before, Rick had made her feel like he wanted her, not just a playmate. More nights like that and she’d be doomed. Except, there was still this nagging feeling. Did he just act the Don Juan, same as he could turn into a caveman or her sex slave?

He squatted and took pictures of the waves rolling onto the sand. Lara watched the seagulls soaring out over the ocean and wished she could be a bird for a day.img_2057-small

“Less than three hundred miles to Santiago.” He lifted his head and smiled. “Why don’t you come further south with me? You still have time.”

Lara took a deep breath. “We’ll see.”

He nodded. “Okay. Let’s get going.”

Lara slipped her arm through his as they strolled back to the lighthouse. She didn’t want to let go of the new Rick.

Kids had written names in the dust covering the X-Trail. Maybe they could run it through a car wash somewhere on the way. Lara unlocked the doors with the remote, slipped into the driver’s seat, buckled up, and put on her sunglasses. Off to new adventures and just maybe real romance; an extended dopamine high wasn’t the worst kind of brain xxxx-up.

She smiled at Rick before she backed onto the street running along the beach. Ruta 5 would take them inland again, so Lara kept glancing at the sea until restaurants blocked her view. She steered the X-Trail away from the esplanade.

img_2050-small“There’s a sign for Santiago,” Rick said. “Turn right at the next light.”

Lara pulled onto the Pan-Americana and accelerated, heading south toward cooler and more fertile regions. Some high-rises still lined the highway, with hotels, a casino, cabañas.

A red light caught her off-guard. Lara braked hard and brought the X-Trail to a squealing stop. She looked at Rick. “Sorry, I thought we basically had a clear stretch ahead.”

“Yeah, me too.”

A horn blared. Her eyes flicked to the rear view mirror. A red truck growing larger—coming fast, too fast. “Shit!” She focused on the road ahead. All clear. Still the honking. A last glimpse in the mirror and she slammed down on the gas pedal. The car lunged forward.

Something big and white entered her peripheral vision from the left. Deep shit, she thought as the barrel-shape filled the windshield. No time to brake. The horn still screamed at her.

Nowhere to go.


To purchase Crumple Zone on Amazon.com

Edith’s Writer’s Page

Edith on Twitter

If you like Crumple Zone, and I’m sure you will, check out my earlier blog where Edith Parzefall shares about her book, Strays of Rio.