Debby Rice is a writer from Chicago. She has spent time in Mexico City, San Miguel Allende, New Orleans and San Francisco, and her experiences in those cities color her work. Chihuahua Karma is her first novel. The story was inspired by a very tiny dog that lives at her neighborhood dry cleaners. Rice blurs the distinctions between fantasy and reality and immerses her readers in a vividly imagined new world.
Chihuahua Karma chronicles the horrendous consequences of Cherry Paget’s bad choices. Cherry trades love for a Black American Express card. She dumps veterinarian, Richard Preston, to marry gangster, Larry Finkelstein. And, when a smudge of magenta lipstick confirms that Larry is cheating, she washes down a fist-full of Vicoden with a bottle of wine for breakfast. That mistake is the beginning of her problems.
In an inebriated attempt at tanning, Cherry plunges from the terrace of her penthouse to the street below. She escapes extinction only to encounter a more complicated fate. Cherry regains consciousness to find herself trapped inside the body of a Chihuahua.
Cherry’s tiny prison is a mini Chi named Sugar, the product of urban American’s fascination with smaller and smaller dogs. The Lucky Dream Dry Cleaners is her dismal new home. With the unwitting assistance of her former housekeeper, Cherry escapes the dirty clothes and cotton dust. Once again ensconced in Larry’s luxurious penthouse, she becomes his girlfriend’s prized purse-buddy.
In her diminished state, Cherry finds new perspective. She yearns for Richard. And she forms an unlikely alliance with Don Paco Fernandez, a temperamental ghost with a taste for tequila and pretty ladies. Through Don Paco, Cherry discovers that only she can save an orphaned child from her impending adoption by a sinister couple. The cast of off-beat characters collides, and Cherry meets her destiny, at a casino night Christmas party.
Chihuahua Karma could easily share a shelf with humorous fiction like the Devil Wears Prada and the Nanny Diaries. Sugars fans will include women who love to dress small dogs in outrageous fashions and any reader who enjoys unraveling an unusual plot to its surprising conclusion.