I've been getting some nice reviews for The Stalker on Author's Den, and the readers are pretty consistent with their comments about not being able to put the book down.
The Stalker is probably my darkest story to date, and it's definitely high on the creep factor, making everyday seem like Halloween for leading lady Rachel, and after reading this small sample you may agree. Enjoy.
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They headed out to the parking lot. After Alice drove away, Rachel turned her attention to Shane.
"So, what'd you think?"
"I like her. She's like you, in a lot of ways."
"You think so? I always thought that because we're really only half-sisters, we weren't that much alike."
"Well, in that case, you're each other's better half. Seriously, you two have a great relationship. I wish I could have been closer to my own sister, but there's such a big difference in our ages. By the time I was old enough to get to know her, she'd gone off to California for college. After that she only came home for short visits."
"It's never too late, you know," said Rachel. "Maybe you should call her sometime, just to say hello."
"Well, maybe. We'll see. Meantime, I'll walk you to your car."
Rachel was parked a few spaces away. She stepped up to the driver's side door and reached into her purse for her keys.
"Thank you again, Shane, for such as wonderful evening. I'm glad you liked my sister."
He gazed into her eyes and slowly leaned down to kiss her. It was a gentle, yet passionate kiss. When it was over, he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her in close as he kissed the top of her head. A sense of calmness came over her as she basked in the warmth of his embrace, but her mood quickly shattered as pair of glaring headlights shined in her face. A red pickup truck slowly drove past. She watched as it turned out of the parking lot and drove away.
"Are you all right?" asked Shane.
She nodded toward the street. "That truck. I've seen it a lot lately. Over the past few weeks it's been going up and down my street."
"Are you sure? There are plenty of red pickup trucks in Tucson."
"Yes, I'm sure. It's a red Dodge Ram, with California plates."
"And that's a popular model. Maybe someone from California recently moved into your neighborhood."
"Maybe," she replied, "but that particular truck has a small dent, just above the left rear wheel, and I recognized the same exact dent on the truck that just drove by."
"It's okay, Rachel. I know what you're thinking, but it's been weeks since we bumped into Craig Walker, and you've heard nothing of him since. I'm beginning to think his being at the same hotel where we had our reunion was one of those weird coincidences. In the meantime, we're only a few blocks away from your place, so it's entirely possible that someone from California has just moved into your neighborhood."
Rachel remained unconvinced, but she didn't want to start an argument. "Well, hopefully, you're right. Maybe it is just a coincidence."
She unlocked her car door and Shane gave her a final hug and another quick kiss before she slipped behind the wheel. He stood by as she fired up the engine and waved goodbye as she slowly headed out of the parking lot.
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