When he did reach her, Ian realized that the situation was even more difficult to comprehend than he had first realized. Good Lord, she was bald! And a wet, stringy black lump of wig that he had always assumed was his wife's hair floated obscenely nearby. And the body. What in the bloody hell was wrong with Vanessa's body? It was smaller somehow. And...shriveled. He struggled toward the side of the tub, his arm tucked under the chin of her hairless head and around her neck. It took all the control Ian could muster to suppress the panic screaming within him, but somehow he pulled his wife to the edge of the tub and hoisted her body up onto the blue and white ceramic tiles.

Leaping from the water, Ian grabbed his Vanessa's arms and heaved until he had pulled her the rest of the way out of the water. Then, as his mind recoiled in bewilderment at his wife's emaciated, unmoving naked body, Ian lowered his face, touching his wife's lips for the first time in many weeks. In a shock of horrified revulsion, he found himself gazing at the face of an ancient hag. It was Vanessa's face, but ravaged by age. Even in his drunken terror, instinct carried Ian and, as his mind blamed Vanessa’s condition on having been submerged in the water, the English actor tried to get the inert body next to him to breathe. But it wouldn't work. What the hell was the matter?

The air was blocked. He couldn't force any air into her lungs. Emitting a tiny whimper of fear, Ian roughly grabbed at Vanessa's sunken, withered cheeks, prying her jaws apart, struggling to see inside her mouth. That's when he saw the food. The interior of Vanessa's mouth and throat cavity were completely clogged with soggy clumps of food. Meat. Half-chewed meat. Shaking with revulsion and panic, Ian dug with his finger inside Vanessa's mouth. Then, unable to dislodge the clotted mass, he shifted himself behind her and picked her body up in such a way that he could apply some manner of Heimlich Maneuver to dislodge the obstruction. But he couldn't do it. Jesus, bloody hell, he couldn't get her body to stay up. It was nothing more than sagging, wrinkled skin that hung limply on a mass of skeletal dead weight.

AUTHOR: Stephanie Lynn Ramsey
GENRE: Thriller
PUBLISHED: Feb 08, 2009

***** 5 star Amazon Reviews *****

FOUNTAIN IS A FAST-PACED, SEXY, AND SLEEK MYSTERY THAT DELVES INTO SENSUALITY AND VANITY WITH NO APOLOGIES. In FOUNTAIN, Stephanie Lynn Ramsey writes about the seedy and expensive pursuit of everlasting youth. After a beloved politician's mysterious death, the police are baffled by the politician's corpse which has aged so rapidly that he is almost unrecognizable. To make matters eerier, the word "FOUNTAIN" is found scrawled out near the body, sparking a fast-paced investigation into Reed Pharmaceuticals and its powerful female executive who promises youth and beauty from her "rejuvenation regiments." More mysterious deaths are connected to Reed Pharmaceuticals, and the company will do anything, including murder, to silence anyone who threatens to unravel its monopoly on the "fountain of youth." Ms. Ramsey delivers up one interesting character after another while interweaving their stories together in one unforgettable and literally "explosive" climax. - March 30, 2010 By m squared "Mike" (Sound Beach, NY USA)

***** Wow! You don't see this coming. You think this book will be the typical semi-mystery and Wham! It hits you when you least expect it. I enjoyed reading something different in the thriller world of books. - By Joset Du Prea "Book Lover" Often with harsh language and sometimes shocking scenes, FOUNTAIN takes an unflinchingly critical look at modern society's obsession with youth. These characters care only about themselves and looking good! They have discovered the secret to the Fountain of Youth, but at a terrible price! In this hard-hitting work of fiction,the rich and famous will do anything to stay young and beautiful. Anything! Even if their quest leads them to commit the most unspeakable acts!