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|"He[the officer] ignored her and instead leaned down |
resting his elbows on her windowsill.
'I said, I don’t think I seen you around here before!'
His smile did nothing to put her at ease."
By Linda Nance
Even from the grave, love comes to make sure the Journey Home is safe and fulfilling—excellent suspense keeps pages turning ‘til the end! Lara's Uncle Charley had just died. And she was still surprised at what she had learned from her uncle's attorney. Lara had already been upset by the way a police officer had acted offensively toward her as she had driven to her uncle's home, especially after having been greeted so warmly in town when she'd arrived.
Now she was learning that Allen Coleman was not only in the will, but her Uncle had placed stipulations on both of them!
It was strange to be in her aunt and uncle's home without their being there. Especially when she began to feel like she was being watched. Of course, she had been, with Fred having come to visit and breaking a potted plant. Though she was forgiving of the dog, she wasn't quite so sure when his owner, Mr. Coleman himself, also appeared. From that first meeting she had been both attracted and angered by how close Allen had gotten to her uncle. Was it guilt because she had not visited very often?
But nothing prepared her for the first visit from another neighbor, Paul Winters, who immediately had moved to come into the house "to visit" and get to know each other. Fortunately, Allen had come right at that time. But it was not the last time she would see Paul. Sometimes he would be standing in the woods just at their property line; other times he would yell from there, or come to visit again, always carrying his gun.
Her uncle's stipulation that she stay and live in the house for at least nine months was going to be hard. As a writer, she would be able to work anywhere, but things were getting strange. Could the tobacco she kept smelling mean that Uncle Charley was still in the house, or was somebody purposely playing tricks on her. Then she learned that her agent and best friend's office had been broken into and Marla felt Lara should not live alone for such a long time.
Fortunately, she was getting along with Allen and he introduced her to other neighbors, Donald and Katelyn who also were neighbors who lived fairly close. She was at least feeling more at home and beginning to have friends and somewhat of a social life. Even Fred had fallen for her and spent much of his time visiting, so that she wasn't alone.
And her house had been broken into, sloppily so that she would know somebody had been there. Soon, Allen, Donald and Katelyn became more than friends; they were also providing protection!
Nance's second novel keeps you guessing, and some of the bad guys won't surprise you, but the final ending was totally unexpected and greatly added to the tension of this great drama. But no matter how quickly the author forced us to turn the pages, in the end Nance presented a totally heartwarming love story filled with friends who quickly came to be closer than family!
I loved this one and hope Linda is already imagining where her next novel will take us!
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