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Every day, I wake up certain of only three things: I am responsible for my mother’s death. My father has vanished. Someone wants me dead. I’m on the run. It’s me against the world. I cannot let it break me.
When sixteen-year-old Olivia Jacobs and her celebrity chef father are brutally attacked after his French Quarter restaurant opening, the shell-shocked Olivia finds herself on the run on the streets of New Orleans. Who wants her dead? And why?
Read an excerpt...
The dark thoughts were back. Real and chilling. Like a bony finger tapping her on the shoulder.
Kate shivered. In one swift movement, she shrugged out of her soaked jacket, scattering an arc of raindrops on the floor like the outline of a crescent moon.
Instead of kneeling to wipe up the moisture, Kate turned and pressed both palms on the side table in front of the mirror. She gazed at her pale reflection. Deep brown eyes stared back, the flecks of gold dim from lack of rest and too much worry. It had been a hell of a week.
As a clinical psychologist, Kate fought for innocent victims. She delegated, advocated, and managed, helping each to regain their lives after violent trauma. She’d taken the helm at the crisis center only a year ago, and the demand hadn’t slowed for their services. New patients overflowed the clinic, with counselors working overtime. The court docket was jammed and their safe house was nearly full.
This afternoon, Kate was moments away from leaving the office when the new client, shell-shocked and tear-streaked, walked in. Every single counselor was busy. Theo would have to forgive her. Kate dropped her purse and wrap, grabbed an intake form, and brought the shaking girl a bent Styrofoam cup of lukewarm coffee before trying to coax out her story.
They spoke, in halting, awkward conversation about the damp weather and Mardi Gras, school exams at the girl’s Catholic high school. She was 16. And despite her torn uniform and scuffed leather shoes, the girl’s family was well off. But Kate knew better than anyone socioeconomic class didn’t segregate these victims. Rape was about opportunity, power, and control.
This is the story of a young girl who has lost her mother to illness and has a good but very busy dad. Olivia falls into depression and while trying very hard to come back to everyday life, is still haunted by the loss of her mother. When her father, Theo, is finally able to open the restaurant that was the dream of he and Olivia’s mother, things begin to break loose. It seems as if everyone can be untrue. Who do you trust when so many want something everywhere you look? And even worse…what do they want?
I really had a hard time figuring out who was who at the beginning of this story and I thought it was going to move slowly. Let me tell you, it most certainly did not. It got moving along within a couple of chapters and I had a very hard time taking a break for those chores and things you are supposed to do, right til the end. Once I had the characters figured out as I mentioned, I began to really see their unique personalities. You can’t “see” this or feel it for that matter unless the author has done a good job of giving you the tools to do so. Tools such as excellent descriptions, emotions as well as their surroundings. Lauren Clark had no trouble providing this in her writing.
Lauren Clark has several stand-alone novels. All rated very high.
***This book was provided to me free of charge in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are definitely my own.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Lauren Clark is the author of several award-winning novels, including Dancing Naked in Dixie, Stardust Summer, and Stay Tuned. She also writes suspense under the name Laura McNeill. Center of Gravity and Sister Dear have been published by HarperCollins.
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