Beth Venable has seen too much. Witness to a major mob hit, she's placed in protective custody until the trial. But after her third safe house is riddled with bullets, she goes off-grid to save herself. What the FBI can't do, her kinfolk will.
The beautiful but forbidding Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky welcome Beth back, dirt roads and rustic shacks a world apart from L.A. But her homecoming, even her blissful reuion with strong, silent Ryal Walker is made bittersweet by the fight she's brought to the clan's doorstep. Hidden in a remote cabin with the man she's always wanted, Beth begins to dreaam of a new life: her old one. But after so long, with such dangers stalking her, is it impossible.
But love can distill life down to its essence: an elixir of pure hope, nerve and the will to survive.
Beth Venable, 27, is staying overnight in the apartment of her good friend Sarah Steinman as there had been a gas leak in Beth’s Los Angeles apartment and everyone was being evacuated for a 24-hour period. That one evening spent at a friend’s home was about to change Beth’s life forever! Spying a telescope in the corner of the living room, Beth innocently peered through the lens at the stars in the sky then began scanning around looking at other things. The scope lands on the apartment across the way from Sarah’s and the window is wide open and lit up, not darkened like hers. From the expression on their faces it looked as though the couple in that apartment were having an argument and before Beth had the chance to feel guilty and look away for spying the action went from arguing to violence in a heartbeat. The man abruptly shoved the woman against the back of the couch and she reacted with a hard slap to his jaw. Beth saw instant rage fly across the man’s face and then all of a sudden there was a knife in his hand. He slit the woman’s throat from ear to ear so fast, had it not been for “..the arterial blood spray that splashed across the windows, Beth would have thought she’d imagined it.” Beth started jumping up and down and screaming: “Oh my God, Oh my God, Sarah, help, help! He killed her!” Just as Beth was explaining to Sarah what happened, the man turned toward the window almost as if he could see Beth. Although her apartment was shrouded in darkness, she ducked out of the way anyway. Sarah called 911 for her and they waited for the police to arrive.
After going to the station and giving a statement to the police about the circumstances surrounding that entire evening, including why Beth was at Sarah’s apartment in the first place and not at her own, she was dropped back off at Sarah’s apartment. Once Beth was inside she noticed Sarah’s bedroom door had been left a bit ajar and walked in slowly calling out: “Sarah? “Sar-ah?” She could hear the t.v. in Sarah’s bedroom and as she pushed open the door all the way she found her best friend sitting up in bed with a bullet hole through her forehead!! Obviously the killer had come back and mistakenly thought it was Sarah who had witnessed the murder and killed her in error.The policeman who had walked Beth to the door heard her scream and was back inside the apartment within a matter of minutes. Beth was scared to death thinking the killer may still be inside the apartment.
The FBI gets involved and has to move Beth to THREE different locations because the killer kept finding her. After the third move, Sarah ran away and decided to take matters into her own hands and contacted some of her family members whom she hadn’t seen in years. What follows is an unbelievable display of what it means to have “family” in the true sense of the word where it doesn’t matter what has happened in the past or is currently happening, if a family member is in trouble then everyone rallies around and does what they can to help.
The best part for Beth is once again seeing Ryal Walker, her first and only love whom she last saw when she was 17-years-old. He is 8 years older than Beth but with the two of them, age seems to have no limits.
This book was 330 pages long and I literally sat and read it in one sitting . It was so well written and so powerful that I just couldn’t tear myself away from the book at all. This is one book that you simply cannot miss!!