Part noir, part odyssey, HEAT SIGNATURE mines the psychological and emotional landscape of loss as a son tries to cope with the murder of his mother.
Sam Brown sets out on a road trip from his home in a small California desert town to the cooler, greener climes of the Northwest. He tells himself he just needs a break, from his father, a dead-end relationship with a stripper, his job as a nurse, and his troubled best friend. But what he can’t escape, no matter how many miles he travels, is the memory of his mother, July, who was brutally murdered sixteen years earlier and visits him regularly in his dreams. Sam’s grief is sorely renewed when he learns July’s murderer is soon to be released from prison. Overcome by strong feelings of panic and revenge, he turns to women. He re-connects with a former patient in Los Angeles. In Santa Barbara he meets a sage/philosopher who inspires him to put order in his life. In Oregon, he falls in love with an arborist whose woodsy home provides peace and refuge—at least for a while. Simultaneous with Sam’s journey, his mother’s story unfolds, coming to a climax when the details of July’s grisly murder are revealed. Through a fast-paced, gripping narrative, Heat Signature explores the complexities of family and friendship, love and loss, race and sexuality.
“In a prose that almost glistens on the page, HEAT SIGNATURE describes parabolas of loss and recovery, both satisfying a reader’s appetite for consolation and coherence, and, curiously, whetting it anew. Teasley writes with brio, heart, and (yes) heat, too.” Gregory Maguire
“Lisa Teasley has fashioned an extraordinary literary suspense novel: crisp, brutal and concise in tone, with engaging, wholly original characters.” Joy Nicholson
“Heat Signature is a nearly feral novel… in places gleaming like fired coal.” Susan Straight
“Lisa Teasley’s Heat Signature is a five alarm fire. Sensual and dangerous, her work burns through the imagination and leaves an indelible trace.” Holiday Reinhorn