Food by the Book: “Emma in the Night” will keep you on edge of seat

“Emma in the Night” is a new psychological thriller from Wendy Wallace. She sends us her recipe for guacamole developed by her younger brother. Make this a part of your family celebrations for the upcoming cookout season.

Attorneys and police detectives often make the best crime novelists. Their experience and understanding of the human psyche give them far more insight than the average person. Enter family law attorney Wendy Walker with a new psychological thriller, “Emma in the Night,” and you have the right ingredients for a page turner.

Emma and her sister Cassandra are the teenaged daughters of a perfectly beautiful, narcissistic mother, Judy Martin. When Cass sides with her father during their parents’ divorce, her mother forces her to refer to her as Mrs. Martin afterward. Mrs. Martin plays mind games with her daughters, often pitting them against each other mercilessly. One day they both turn up missing, but from seemingly different locations with no connection and few clues.

Three years later, Cass appears at her mother’s doorstep, unable to tell anyone where she has been, but certain her sister is alive and needs to be found. Only forensic psychologist Dr. Abigail Winter seems poised to break the case. Her deep understanding of narcissism helps her see the effects Mrs. Martin’s behavior has had on the girls. This story is told from the perspective of several characters, all of whom could be unreliable narrators, including Dr. Winter. “Emma in the Night” will indeed keep you up all night reading. Wallace is a master of psychological thrillers.

No specific foods are mentioned in the novel, however, Wendy Wallace sends her recipe for guacamole developed by her younger brother. She says, “My younger brother taught me how to make this when he was living with us and ‘working’ as my ‘manny’ right after college. He is 18 years younger than I am, and my kids adored him. We became very close living under one roof and every year we have a family reunion and he makes this by the buckets!” This is truly a flavorful take on a classic recipe. Make this a part of your family celebrations for the upcoming cookout season.

Wendy’s Guacamole

4 ripe avocados - mashed (I do not use a food processor - I like them a little chunky)

1 lime - squeezed into bowl

10-12 red cherry tomatoes cut into quarters

1/4 red onion chopped finely

1 garlic clove either crushed or mashed (can also use about 1/2 teaspoon of paste)

A sprinkle of chili powder over the top

Sea salt to taste — make sure to match with the saltiness of the chips you will use. If the chips are very salty, use less. I always salt-to-taste with the chips!

Mix all together in a medium serving bowl and enjoy!

Reach Melony Carey at or (918) 683-3694.