L. Wilder definitely sucked me in with this new hitman romance. This fast-paced romantic suspense will keep you on the edge-of-your-seat until the very end. ~Author RB Hilliard
OMG!!!! Five stars +! What a fantastic read. Day Three is the first book in a new series and it is everything you want in a L. Wilder book. ~Brenda (Amazon reviewer)
That prologue – wow!!! If the blurb didn’t already hook you, that sure will! Or maybe it’s the sexy man on the cover???! I absolutely loved everything about this story! It’s unlike anything I have read before. ~Jessica (Goodreads reviewer)
Release Date: May 28, 2019
When her grandmother dies, Gabby discovers an old letter concealed in a secret compartment in the roll-top desk made four generations earlier. The secrets it reveals belong to an even earlier generation—the first members of Gabby’s family to cross the ocean from Britain to Australia, over 150 years ago.
In 1855 Sarah and Mary are alone on The Colchester, after their parents are both killed by the deadly disease on-board. The family left their home in Wales in an attempt to find a
better life in the colonies but with both parents dead the sisters are devastated, with no idea what to do next.
Sarah also becomes ill and, worried about passing her illness to Mary, encourages her to spend the days away from the stuffy cabin, in the fresh air on deck. Befriended by a gentleman, Mary finds herself swept up in a hopeless cycle of shame and lies, with no way out. When the girls arrive in Melbourne they have little hope of finding suitable work and make a drastic decision which could lead either to fortune or disaster.
Mary’s heart was beating so fast she thought she might have a heart attack and it was only knowing that Billy was there, that it was up to her to keep him safe, that kept her outwardly calm. “Please, mister, just take our savings and go. There’s a bunch of troopers coming along behind us.”
Another shot rang out and this time it was one of theirs; the man who hadn’t approached the cab, but was holding back, keeping watch, slumped over on his horse and the sidekick turned his horse around. One more shot and his hat flew off his head. “Let’s go!” he said.
The leader tipped his hat to Mary. “Sorry, love, we have to go now. Maybe next time.”
They disappeared as suddenly as they’d appeared and Baz pulled up beside the carriage. “All right, Mrs?”
“Yes, what about Luke and Harry?”
“Luke copped it in the arm, but he can sit up all right in the wagon, not on a horse. That whitefella though, I don’t know, he looks bad, Mrs.”
“Harry?” Sarah climbed out and ran back to the wagon, with Mary behind her.
His head was bleeding and he was barely conscious. “Can we put him on the mattress?” Sarah said, as she used her handkerchief in an attempt to stop the bleeding.
With Mary and Sarah’s help, Baz managed to drag Harry behind the seats to the mattress and lay him down there. The bleeding had almost stopped but Sarah was very worried; she couldn’t tell what the extent of the injury was. Mary was helping Luke, bandaging his arm with her scarf and he said he’d be all right, sitting in the seat beside Baz, who would drive Harry’s cart. The horses were tied to the back.
“Would you mind if I sit here with Harry, Mary?” Sarah asked. “Perhaps Luke could go with you?”
Mary nodded. She could see what it meant to her sister and she had no doubt at all now that Harry was more than a friend. Luke was happy to ride with Mary and Billy and was well enough to sing some songs to the little boy and put him to sleep. He had persuaded Mary to take Harry to Elsie and Biddy, who he said were the best hope he had of survival.
After spending most of her younger adult life as a full-time mother of five, Christine rediscovered a love for learning when her youngest son started school in 1990. By the time her son graduated from high school, Christine had earned a Diploma in Art and Design, a Diploma of Arts in Professional Writing and Editing and a Bachelor of Arts in History and Philosophy of Religion, with Honours in History.
During her Honours year she came across the tragic case of Camellia McCluskey, when researching infanticide and child murder for her thesis. She found the case especially compelling because of the quantity and quality of research material available and also because the crime actually occurred in the regional city where she herself lives.
She wrote a non-fiction version of the story, ‘Not Guilty’, but she became frustrated at the missing elements of Camellia’s personal history. She decided to create a story, based on her knowledge of the period and research, in an effort to reveal her humanity. By the time the reader learns how the murders unfold, they have an appreciative insight into Camellia the person, without having had the opportunity to have met her. As a fiction writer Christine enjoyed writing ‘Her Flesh and Blood’ more than ‘Not Guilty’, but the non-fiction version has proven more popular with readers.
She has several books on Amazon and has also had short stories published on radio and in journals. ‘The Letter’ was inspired by her love of history in general and also family history.
A Coalcliff Stud novel—His beloved home is under threat, and with it the beautiful, haunted woman he’s never been able to forget …
X-Treme TV sports star Reid Stratton has everything—until his best friend falls to his death on a climb while shooting their show. In the fierce media fallout, Reid begins to question everything about himself. Crippled by a new fear of climbing, Reid returns to CoalCliff Stud, his family’s horse farm, to recover.
Single mother Natalia Robinson is determined to start afresh, away from the shadow of her past. A job at CoalCliff Stud where she lived as a child is the perfect opportunity to live the quiet life she always wanted. But she is unprepared to see Reid, and is even more unprepared for the passion that still burns between them.
But after a series of menacing events threaten the new home she is trying to build, Nat realises that Reid is the only person she can rely on to keep her and her daughter safe. Together, Reid and Nat must face the pasts that haunt them if they are to survive the present and forge a future of hope.
‘Right. Here goes nothing.’ Or something. Reid really hoped it was something.
He dipped his hands into his chalk bag, wiping the chalk over them, shaking off the excess then stepped up to the rock face and took a deep breath. His lungs filled with the scent of dirt and lichen and the sharp scents of the eucalypts that gave the Blue Mountains their moniker. In the distance a bird cawed, the sound echoing and lonely. He couldn’t take any notice, must concentrate on the wall of rock before him.
Heart pounding, he rolled his shoulders and tried to ignore the perspiration trickling down his forehead, his back. His palms itched. This was the moment of truth. His moment of truth.
He should probably have got Steve and the production crew involved in this climb, to capture his big comeback for posterity—and the ratings it would undoubtedly bring—but he’d wanted to do this in private. It seemed right somehow that his first climb after the accident wasn’t in front of the cameras. The first time ever he hadn’t wanted to show off for the world. He could just imagine what Luke would have said about that.
But then, Luke couldn’t say anything. He was dead.
He shuddered, a cold sweat prickling his skin. Don’t think of that. Think of the climb. Only the climb.
Only the climb. It had been their mantra and had served him well through championships and their TV show, but now the words hung empty.
Race you to the top. The echo of Luke’s voice rang in his ears. He shook his head and looked up at the wall of rock in front of him. He’d done this climb at Echo Point many times before, the view from the top of the famous sandstone plateau one you could breathe into your soul and keep with you forever.
The line he’d chosen wasn’t a difficult climb—bloody easy compared to what he’d done before—but a good solid one to cut his teeth on. What he and Luke had become famous for. And if he was to get their TV show up and going again, do the charity climb in Luke’s name that he and Steve planned on the soaring pristine lines of the Gorge at Mt Buffalo—Luke’s favourite place to climb and the first place they’d ever filmed themselves climbing to post online—he needed to do this.
‘Right.’ He clapped his hands together, chalk blooming up, making his nose twitch. ‘One grip at a time.’ He stepped to the rock face, reached, took the first hold, fingers gripping over the small ridge of rock and pulled up. He settled his feet into grooves in the striations of the sandstone—only five reach holds, none of them difficult, before he would position the first cam to clip the lead rope to. He would normally free climb this section, but nerves had him needing to anchor the rope. It was a bit of a stupid thing to do without a partner, but given what happened the last time he climbed with one …
He swallowed hard. He’d checked his rope, the cams and carabiners a hundred times before getting here and again once here. They were safe. Nothing would break. He was good. He needed this. He reached for the next hold, gripped, found a foot hold, pushed up grabbed the next grip. Easy. There was no reason for his heart to be a thunder of hooves in his chest. For his breath to be coming in short-sharp gasps, razoring his throat, as if he’d just run the London Marathon. No reason for sweat to be dripping off him. Or for the ghost pain to be driving through his shoulder like an ice spike. His shoulder was healed and aside from the pull of the scar tissue, it shouldn’t be hurting. It was strong. He’d worked hard to make it strong again. Why else had he done that if not to get back to this?
Push through, Stratton. Eye on the prize. Think of the climb. We can do this.
He blinked the sweat out of his eyes, rubbing his face against his shoulder before he pushed up for the next grip. Two more and he’d reach the fissure he could push the cam into and create his anchor.
He settled his toes firmly in the thin ridge of rock, feeling the dig of the sharp stone through his thin, flexible rock climbing shoes, before reaching up again. His fingers found purchase on a little jut of weathered stone. He pulled up.
Rock crumbled through his fingers. He began to slip. He made a desperate grab for a nearby small ridge in the rock, but his foot slipped. For a moment, he hung, scrabbling at the rock, trying to find the holds he’d found before, but it was as if the rock face had become a sheet of marble, slippery and smooth. He could find nothing. Nothing. His shoulder was screaming, the pain spiking through him. His fingers were slipping. He couldn’t hold on. He was going to fall. Going to fall.
Leisl is a tall red head with an overly large imagination. As a child, she identified strongly with Anne of Green Gables. A voracious reader and a born performer, it came as no surprise to anyone when she did a double major in English Literature and Drama for her BA, then went on to a career as an actor, singer and dancer, as well as script writer, stage manager and musical director for cabaret and theatre restaurants (one of which she co-owned and ran for six years).
After starting a family Leisl stopped performing and instead, began writing the stories that had been plaguing her dreams. Leisl’s stories have won and placed in many competitions in Australia and the US, including the STALI, Golden Opportunities, Heart of the West, Linda Howard Award of Excellence, Touch of Magic and many others.
Leisl lives in the leafy suburbs of Melbourne with her two beautiful boys, lovely hubby, overly spunky dogs, Buffy and Skye, and likes to spend time with family and friends. She is addicted to the Syfy channel, and her shelves are full of fantasy and paranormal books and scifi DVDs. She sometimes sings in a choir, has worked as a swim teacher, loves to ski, can talk the hind leg off a donkey and has been President of Romance Writers of Australia from 2014-2017.
Other Books by this Author
My paranormal romance Pack Bound series – Pack Bound, Moon Bound, Shifter Bound and Wolf Bound are available to order on Amazon Here, iBooks Here, Google Play Here, Kobo Here and at all other good ebook sellers.
My romantic rural suspense, Dangerous Echoes, Book 1 in the Echo Springs Series is available as an ebook at: iBooks, Google Play, Kobo, Amazon AU. Or you can buy the four book series, Echo Springs in paperback at Big W, Kmart and online at Angus&Robertson, Booktopia, The Nile, Boomerang Books, Dymocks
Nova had always seen sounds, represented in shapes and colors in the air. That’s what synesthesia was. The doctors had explained it as a type of cross-wiring somewhere in her brain, allowing diﬀerent senses to overlap or change roles. They’d made it sound like no big deal, but she didn’t have to go to school with the doctors. She did have to go to school with kids who had no idea what she meant when she told them their voice looked sharp or purple. She’d made the mistake of thinking she was normal. That she belonged. She’d made the mistake of letting people know who and what she was.
The darkness shifted to reveal a man’s face inside a black hood. His eyes glittered. Menace radiated from them. The shadow shifted again, and a fold rose, a pale arm sheathed inside. The lamp light reﬂected along the surface of something gripped in a tight fist. Nova’s scream erupted from deep in her chest, sending shards of red, yellow, and white in every direction. They crashed against the walls like waves.