Tortured beyond Endurance…
Kelly Wachowski has no memory of her life before she was five. Despite being one of the ‘found’ children and her uncanny ability to assimilate languages, she’s managed to live a normal life for twenty years until the day she was kidnapped. Tortured beyond endurance she prayed for death while she dreamed of a boy long forgotten—Noah.
A Hero with a Secret… Samson Noah Kukailimoku is another ‘found’ child. His existence was kept secret by the Polynesian family who adopted him. Now he’s a highly decorated naval officer, and part of an elite unit whose mission is to rescue children like Kelly. The closer he gets to finding her the more he connects to her and shares the pain of her torture and the dreams of their shared past.
A Love That Is More than a Dream…
After her rescue, Kelly is convinced she’s losing her mind as she experiences Noah’s life in a waking dream. Knowing she’s in danger, Noah must save Kelly from herself and those tracking her, moving Heaven and Earth to protect her. Linked by their past, danger and deception follow them everywhere. Together they discover a love and passion surpassing all of their dreams, but before they can have a future together they have to solve the mystery of their past.
Review: I went into this book thinking that there was no way I was going to like it. I thought it was going to be just like all the others with the same type of characters, the same storyline…well, the same everything. But…WOW was I ever wrong. Once I picked this up I literally could not put it down. I enjoyed it thoroughly and the next one in the series can’t come soon enough for me.
I loved the characters which were very well thought out. Each found child matched his/her found families perfectly…okay maybe a little too perfect…Nah. Everything flowed with such ease that you could put it down for just a second come back easing right back into the story as if you never left. Sometimes with books you have to re-read just to find your train of thought process. This wasn’t like that. I fell into the story and it stayed with me. I had to finish it in one sitting. Never once was I disappointed.
The story starts with showing us a little of the darker side of life…kidnapping and torture. Kelly shows strength beyond anything I can ever imagine. If I were to face similar things I would like to think I could find the strength but I know I would break. What she went through just to find out what she knows about the ‘Found’ children.
In comes Noah…who happens to be a found himself…triggering Kelly’s memory in brief glimpses not a lot but just enough to keep you involved wanting to solve the mystery of where these children came from. The passion that was between Noah and Kelly was strong but very gentle, sweet and totally from the heart.
With each interaction between the characters whoever they were Ms. O’Leary made it easy to feel the intense emotional ties as if you the reader were right there in the room. Each child had their own unique ability yet some were tied together making their bond/connection stronger adding more depth to the story.
Ms. O’Leary has given us a story that brings the characters off the pages by breathing life into them and making them real. Stories this addictive and compelling are few and far between but it is nice to come across these as they you why you love reading so much. Find a comfy chair to settle in because you won’t want to leave till you are finished reading.
“Tell me where you came from.”
It always started this way. First the question, then the excruciating pain as the electric paddles were held against her temples. The smell of her burning flesh. Then they would take the rubber bit from her mouth and ask another question. Another question she couldn’t answer.
“How many of you are there?”
She prayed to all the saints her mother taught her that this time she would pass out. It was the only thing to ever stop the questions. Stop the pain.
“I don’t know!” she wailed, as the bit was shoved into her mouth. She squeezed her eyes so tight she saw stars before the shocking red flames took over her very being.
“Where did you come from? Where are the rest of you now?” They yanked the bit from her mouth, making her lip bleed.
“Just tell me what you want me to say…” her voice didn’t sound like her own. For hours or months, she wasn’t sure how long she begged them to tell her what they wanted her to answer. The paddles were again placed on her temples. Fire exploded behind her eyes and her teeth actually tore into the rubber bit.
She wasn’t strapped down. She stretched and it felt wonderful, until the pins and needles started. Where was she? She wanted to see if they noticed they forgot to buckle the straps. She tried to look around. She couldn’t. She was blind. They’d blinded her, the shock therapy had blinded her. Oh God. She trembled in horror for long moments before realizing it was her eyelids, they were swollen shut. She tried to touch them to make sure it was the only thing wrong but pain seared her arm.
Moving slowly to restore some circulation to her limbs, she realized she was lying on something soft. Rolling just a little so she wasn’t lying on her arm, she fell on to a hard cement floor. It hurt, it was cold, but at least she could move. Trying to stand up, she used the cot as leverage, but her legs wouldn’t support her.
She crawled and bumped her head against a wall. Using it as a guide she followed it around the small room with cement walls, basically a cell. Mostly empty except for the cot and the toilet, there was a tray with something that felt and smelled like bread and cheese. She wolfed down some of the food, but there wasn’t anything to drink. Crawling over to the toilet she flushed it, then greedily drank handfuls of water.
“Good to see you’re back with us Kelly.” She hadn’t heard any door open or anything else to indicate she wasn’t alone.
“Who are you? What do you want from me?” Cringing at the desperate edge in her voice, she clamped her lips tight. God, how she wanted to beg for water that didn’t come from a toilet, for food, or a blanket, or to go home.
“Who are we? You don’t get to ask the questions, we do. We want to know who all of you are. We know about you and the four others. You all showed up twenty years ago. Why did you come here? Where did you come from?” The woman’s voice was calm and soothing. It was like they were having a polite conversation, but Kelly knew the horror awaiting her at the woman’s command.
“I told you, I don’t remember anything before waking up in Dad’s police car.” Kelly’s voice was raspy from all the screams, but at least it was even.
“But Kelly, Mike Wachowski isn’t really your father now is he?” Again the woman’s speech was calm and soothing. “You appeared out of thin air twenty years ago and were adopted into his family, isn’t that right?”
It wasn’t a question, and Kelly didn’t reply, but suddenly realized what was coming next. She’d forgotten. This wasn’t the first time she’d woken up in this room and drank from the toilet bowl. Doubted it was even the tenth time. It had to be the shock treatments. They were messing with her memory. She didn’t remember when she’d been kidnapped, but it had to have been well over a month, oh God, could it have been a year?
She sat there, turning her head away from the direction of the voice. She waited, and then heard more people entering the cell, knowing what came next. Holding up her arms she didn’t have long to wait, they were there, grabbing and dragging her out.
I was born in Seattle Washington, but soon moved to a small town North of there, which is where I grew up. I’m the oldest of five children, so it was a lively household, and reading became my way to block out the noise. I am an avid reader. I love every genre, but romance and happily ever afters have always been my favorite books. I remember in middle school my biology teacher taking a Rosemary Rogers book away from me; I didn’t understand why—she was certainly teaching me aspects of biology!
As I grew up, I would write stories to entertain myself and my younger siblings. I often wrote their book reports for them. My brothers were only one year apart in age. I wrote a report for the oldest his senior year, he turned it in and got a B+. The next year John turned in the same report to the same teacher and got an A-, the year after that the youngest turned it in to the same teacher and got an A. The teacher liked it better each time he read it!
I’ve worked in corporate America for most of my life, where a lot of creative writing takes place (and if you don’t believe me, you really don’t know corporate America). I blogged to all my employees when I spent six weeks in India—they considered me quite the smartass. My corporate life has allowed me to live in Washington, Texas, Belgium and California.
I have been with the same man for seventeen years. He was born and raised in Texas, and twelve years ago I whisked him, kicking and screaming, to Southern California. Luckily he loves me and wants to be where I am, but he’s still a Texan at heart (although he doesn’t miss Texas summers). I’m a very lucky woman who enjoys swimming, traveling, babysitting her nieces and nephews and doing lots of “research” with her husband for upcoming books.
After being such a fan of romance all my life, I was reading Sophie Oak’s Bliss and Siren in the City series last year, and they weren’t coming out fast enough. I started thinking about a place up in the Northwest, and characters started spinning in my head. Then came Chance. Once he was there, he demanded to be put down on paper. I don’t really write the stories. For real, the stories just come out of my fingers onto the computer screen. Half the time I’m surprised by what ends up being typed!