by Erica Kiefer
I came across Lingering Echoes via NetGalley, a wonderful site for authors to get their books to people who love to read and review books. You can download your own FREE copy of Lingering Echoes from NetGalley. Write a review of your own and enter the author's giveaway for a chance to win a Kindle Fire.
Also available: Rumors (A Lingering Echoes Novella).
She's broken with guilt. He harbors a chilling past. It's safer if they keep their distance ... But, the echoes that linger connect them.
Returning to Hidden Pines is the last thing Allie Collins wants to do during her final summer before college. For her, the family cabin she spent her youthful summers in, now holds a dark memory that has haunted her every day for the last year.
While struggling to forget her past, Allie runs into Damien, a local rebel with secrets of his own. He's dark, dangerous and he keeps showing up when Allie least expects him to. She has every reason not to trust him. So why does she find herself opening up to him in a way she hasn't been able to with anyone?
As pieces of Damien's identity emerge, answers to a rumored mystery begin to unfold. By the time Allie unearths the secrets of Damien's past, she realizes just how intricately they are connected. Now she is caught in a dangerous battle that threatens her life and those she loves.
A gunshot echoed through the cabin.
“No!” I screamed. I threw my hands over my mouth, but it was too late. I could hear footsteps hurrying to the stairwell door.
I bolted across the room, stepping inside a small bedroom. Cardboard boxes were scattered throughout the room, disheveled and disorganized.
There was nowhere to go. I tripped my way to the corner of the room, stubbing my toe and ignoring the throbbing pain.
I could hear the heavy footsteps descending the stairs. Falling against the corner wall, I buried my head behind a large, unopened box. I crouched low, too afraid to even peek around the corner.
A set of footsteps entered the room, pausing by the entryway.
My hand clamped back over my mouth, muffling my breaths and the scream that threatened to escape. I wished I could quiet the pounding in my chest that was sure to give me away.
“We know you’re here. Come on out now, and maybe we won’t kill you.”
I didn’t move an inch, despite the painful cramping in my thighs. I closed my eyes, leaning my sweaty forehead against the cardboard.
A swift click flooded the room with light.
“There you are!”
I tumbled backwards, jumping against the wall as a very large man stalked towards me. At the sight of me, he lowered his gun, smiling in amusement.
“Stay away from me!” I managed to squeeze out from my dry throat. My voice sounded weak and small. I barricaded myself in the corner, my eyes jumping from side to side, searching in vain for an exit.
There was nowhere to go.
"I let out a long sigh and glanced upwards, allowing drizzling rain to kiss my face. A silent flash of light lit up the darkened sky, followed by a mumble of thunder. As the sky shed its heavy tears, I remained huddled on the muddy soil. staring up into the grayness."
"Darkness folded around us, all except for the west sky before us. The sky was a watercolor wash of pinks and deep hues of orange, bleeding together. The sun blazed gingery red, its light painting the mountains into a darkened silhouette. The moon glowed awake with each passing minute, iridescent as it replaced the sun."
"The river played gentle melody, popping against the rock and trickling its soprano voice."
"The one-haunting laughter was gone, no longer echoing off the trees - no longer taunting me with painful memories and guilty emotions."
By Lynda Dickson
Allie is spending the summer at Hidden Pines with her dad, his new wife Clara, and her stepbrother Nick, along with her new friend Brooke and Nick's college buddy Aaron. Her family hopes to help Allie overcome her feelings of guilt over an incident that happened the previous summer. But how far will they go? Who can Allie trust? And why is she so afraid of the water?
When Allie is rescued from a fall by the mysterious Damien, she discovers that they have more in common that she originally thought. Damien tries to help Allie overcome her fears, but he is also haunted by his past. Can people change? Will Damien ever be able to escape his past, or will his past come back to haunt him?
The story moves along at a steady pace and has a nice mix of mystery, romance, and suspense. I especially like the chapter that tells Damien's story about his past. While there are some minor editing errors, including word misuse, there are also some lovely descriptive passages.
I look forward to reading more by this talented new writer.
About the Author
Erica Kiefer was born on Christmas Eve in Southern California to an American father whose ancestors arrived from Europe during colonial times and a Thai mother who moved to the US during high school. Adding to her rich and varied heritage, Erica grew up living abroad in Asia, including Taiwan, Fiji, Thailand and Indonesia. She gained a great respect for the beautiful mosaic of cultures found in various parts of the world. After graduating from International School Bangkok, she attended Brigham Young University in Utah, where she earned a degree in Recreation Therapy. Her career as a Recreation Therapist has allowed her to work with at-risk youth since 2007.
Erica made the best decision of her life by marrying her husband in 2005 and is currently a mother of three, one of whom awaits her in heaven. Erica also loves singing, reading, writing, and satisfying her sweet-tooth with chocolate-chip cookies. Playing collegiate rugby was one of the most memorable experiences of her life, thus far.
Erica's first book, Lingering Echoes, was signed by Clean Teen Publishing and released in early November 2013.