KAREN’S KILLER BOOK BENCH: Welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench where readers can discover talented new authors and take a peek inside their wonderful books. This is not an age-filtered site so all book peeks are PG-13 or better. Come back and visit often. Happy reading!
USAF Pilot Elliot Knight’s days of jumping without a safety net are firmly in the past. There’s nothing and no one that would ever convince him to dust off his time travel gear and take the ultimate leap.
That was before Samantha Billings showed up on his radar with her foundation built on saving lives. Before her sister showed up on his couch half-dead.
Hope Alive Operative Samantha Billings’ life has been limited by a past she can’t change and an ex-husband who won’t let her go. An ex-husband who is convinced her sister is responsible for a recent attempt on Sam’s life.
As a former Foreign Correspondent, Haley Billings has been around the globe sharing stories of both extreme heroism and violent tragedy, including that of her own dark hour. The one that sent her into the clutches of severe alcoholism interrupted only by implicating memories and a host of secrets she can never share. Not even with her sister, Sam—the only person who hasn’t given up on her.
Captain Simon Riley would love nothing better than to put Haley Billings behind bars where she can’t hurt anyone ever again with her exaggerated articles. Where her stories are only just that. But he’s already been down this road. One that resulted in two unnecessary deaths. A preventable suicide. A missing girl.
When a woman who was brutally murdered six months earlier reappears, Haley knows her secrets can’t be hidden any longer—even the ones lost in the abyss of her mind. And Simon knows none of them are safe. Because whatever Haley has done—or not done—is coming for her. Coming for Sam. Coming for Elliot.
Enticing them across the threshold. Right into the hands of danger.
© 2018 Rachel Trautmiller
RICKY HAD ONE shot at saving the girl.
An hour. Less.
In that time, one shot at convincing Samantha Billings she was the only person who could help him accomplish the impossible.
Her and Smell-iot Knight. The idiot.
Not that he was the only one in this particular case. There were tons of unwilling adults centering around this problem. One Ricky had been working on for months, all the details caught up in his mind.
Like the one where he’d prayed Miss Lucinda didn’t call the cops as she threatened every time he entered the office. As if he’d come in and stolen the office valuables and had the nerve to come back for more.
Not that she’d ever come out and admit she was waiting for it. The truth was clear in the way her hazel eyes never left him whenever he was inside Hope Alive. The way her mouth always formed a firm line and her posture got stiff as a board.
Ricky put his skateboard—the one he’d mowed lawns an entire summer to earn—onto the marble flooring in Hope Alive’s waiting room.
He rolled around the room, past the expensive decorations Miss Lucinda insisted they have when Sam and the Colonel had set up shop several years ago. The breakable stuff she obsessed over people destroying.
He finished the circle—could hear the murmur of Miss Lucinda and Sam’s voices as he came to a stop in front of a table filled with pamphlets for support groups, detailed information about Hope Alive’s specific resources, freshly brewed coffee, and a plateful of today’s special treats.
Ricky flipped up his board and grabbed a snickerdoodle cookie, then shoved it in his mouth. An explosion of vanilla and cinnamon on his tongue made him wonder how everyone in the office wasn’t on a constant sugar high.
If he could, he’d stuff the pockets of his cargo shorts with the remaining cookies on the tray. Take them home and demolish them in one sitting.
But he wouldn’t because his mom would have his hide for being rude and ruining his lunch. Or something along those lines. And Lucinda would likely grab him by the ear and toss him out on his rear end. Never let him back in again.
An echo of footsteps grew louder, a slight shift in one step that most people wouldn’t notice.
His stomach soured.
It was because of their close call last year.
Sam’s small sigh filled the space. Not the annoyed kind. The kind that came from frustration. From being the only person in her small circle that could see the bigger picture.
Ricky wished he could change that.
Right now he had to focus on the girl. On getting in and getting out and sticking to the truth. Maybe someday he’d get the chance to focus on Samantha Billings.
If Smell-iot didn’t mess it up. If Ricky didn’t fail right here and now. The thought left a bad taste in his mouth that even a cookie couldn’t rectify. Took every carefree cell inside his body and dried it up.
He swiped two cookies from the plate. Took a breath. There was only one shot. Failure was not an option. He couldn’t quit. Quitting meant death. “Sam, you gotta try these things.” He tossed his board to the marble floor, hopped on and was at her side in a blink. Less than that really. Her gray eyes tracked the burst of time travel like nothing he’d ever seen.
Did she even realize she could see it? That she was likely one of very few who could?
He’d noticed it the very first time he’d ever slung to this point in time. She’d been talking with a man when Ricky had shown up. The man had been taller than her, dressed in a suit, and looked unhappy. She’d paused mid-sentence and watched Ricky move from one time to that moment as if she could see both ends of the slingshot.
He’d frozen, an eerie buzz floating around him. She still hadn’t resumed talking. He hadn’t known if he should run, disappear, or introduce himself. The phenomenon had never happened before. He’d never had anyone track his movements or see him the second he’d absorbed or slingshot.
The man she was with started to turn toward Ricky and he’d known the last bit wasn’t an option. There was annoyance written all over the stranger’s body language. An interruption would be the last thing either of them wanted. Ricky had taken a step toward them anyway, hadn’t gotten farther than that before he was thrown back in time the way he’d come.
Sam’s doing, not his.
He’d been coming back ever since.
Rachel writes novels filled with murder, mayhem, and romance that leave her readers wanting more incredible twists and turns.
SIDE NOTE: A night-light may be required. Some bleary-eyed mornings have been known to occur. Coffee is recommended.
Rachel began weaving tales well before she could actually write. Those early stories included danger and mystery, Barbies and G.I. Joes, a few sensational heroes and their villainous counterparts. Sometimes the hero had to time warp through a hole in her backyard to save the damsel in distress and sometimes he only had to outwit the aforementioned villain.
Nowadays, she leaves the Barbies to her extremely cute daughter (who loves to create her own stories). When she’s not riveting readers with the chaotic and sizzling mess of her character’s lives, she can be found poolside with her husband, daughter, and two super snuggly dogs. She enjoys football, reading, spending time with her daughter, discussing the NFL draft with her husband, and spending time with friends and family. She also loves anything to do with the FBI, law enforcement, and the military. Although she’s extremely knowledgeable about time travel, she has never admitted she’s used this technique herself…
Links to Rachel’s website, blog, books, etc.
DISCONNECT (Echoes Of The Past Book 2):
AFTERMATH (Echoes Of The Past Book 3):
OBSESSION (Echoes Of The Past (Novella) Book 4):
KNIGHT REVIVAL (ECHOES OF THE PAST Book 5):
Threshold of Danger (A Guardian Time Travel Novel Book 1):
You can also stay up to date with what my characters are doing via:
Sign up for my mailing list here:
Thanks, Rachel, for sharing your book with us!
Don’t miss the chance to read this book!