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A pulse-pounding mystery from the author of The Gates of Evangeline featuring Charlotte “Charlie” Cates, an unforgettable heroine whose dark visions bring to light secrets that will save or destroy those around her . . .
When soon-to-be mother Charlotte “Charlie” Cates begins to have recurring dreams about harm coming to her unborn daughter, she knows these are not the nightmares of an anxious mom-to-be. They are the result of her mysterious gift. But before she can decipher what these dreams might mean, Charlie learns that the mother who abandoned her when she was a toddler is the victim of a double murder in Arizona. The other victim—Jasmine, a half-sister Charlie never knew she had—has left behind a child, a little girl who speaks to Charlie in her dreams and was present on the night of the murders. Convinced that she must help her orphaned niece, Charlie travels to Tucson, Arizona, where she must confront her painful ties to her mother and delve into her sister’s shadowy past.
To untangle the web of secrets that will reveal the truth of her nightmares, Charlie can no longer avoid her family’s checkered history. Who is in the racy photos that turned up in Jasmine’s apartment? Where is her niece’s father, whom Jasmine was rumored to have been seeing again on the sly? Was her mother’s charity work in Mexico really as selfless as it seemed? And most important of all, what did her niece really witness on the night of the murders?
The search for answers leads Charlie across the Mexican border, from the resort town of Rocky Point to the border town of Nogales, and elucidates the meaning of her dreams in most unexpected ways. Ultimately, to protect her niece and her unborn child, Charlie must battle not just evil but the forces of nature, in one final terrifying encounter in the Tucson desert.
A thrilling mystery that combines literary suspense and romance with a mystical twist that is unputdownable. If you love Kate Atkinson and Alice Sebold, you should not miss Hester Young.
About the Author
Hester Young holds a master’s degree in English with a creative writing concentration from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, and her work has been published in literary magazines such as The Hawai‘i Review. Before turning to writing full-time, she worked as a teacher in Arizona and New Hampshire. Young lives with her husband and two children in New Jersey.
“Whip-smart, adrenaline-fueled….Young deftly uses Charlie’s supernatural gift to create tension and dread without relying too heavily on it to advance the plot. And a story line involving Donna’s employer—a nonprofit that helps women living in Mexican border towns—both champions charity and gives poverty a human face.” –Publishers Weekly
“Hester Young can tell a ghost story in the blistering daylight and still raise the hair on the back of your neck, and that's what she's done with The Shimmering Road....Young has done much like what John Connolly has done with his Charie Parker series, and made the supernatural something much more tangible to the reader, much more believable to the skeptic, and most importantly, she's made the real world all that more beautiful for it.” --Brian Panowich, author of Bull Mountain
“Well crafted and captivating.” --Booklist (starred review)
“A beautifully crafted mystery combining literary suspense, romance, and a mystical element that lends a unique twist.” –Huffington Post
“Young incorporates a chillingly complex plot, evocative sense of place and mystically engaging characters to lure her audience into this captivating thriller steeped in spine-tingling action.” –Shelf Awareness
Praise for The Gates of Evangeline
“Haunting, heartbreaking, yet ultimately hopeful . . . Young handles the spectral elements with restraint as her tremendously sympathetic heroine seeks to build a new life after death.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“In this spooky thriller, everyone’s a suspect, and the plot twists will keep you guessing.” —People
“The hothouse atmosphere of Evangeline and the tortuous and tangled motives of its denizens make for an enjoyable puzzle box of a mystery. An eerie but inviting debut.” —Kirkus Reviews
“In Hester Young’s haunted Louisiana, the ghostly labyrinth of the past opens its great doors to deliver up a lush gothic thriller. The Gates of Evangeline is a darkly marvelous debut, a classic whodunit stitched with otherworldly chills.” —Jedediah Berry, author of the Hammett Prize–winning The Manual of Detection
“What a delicious book! Gripping and atmospheric—with a heart-stopping twist—The Gates of Evangeline is an imaginative blend of southern gothic, family epic, and spooky whodunit. Trust me: you won’t just read Hester Young’s debut, you will absorb this gorgeous novel using all ‘six’ senses.” —Jillian Medoff, author of I Couldn't Love You More and Hunger Point
“Not just a riveting story about the search for a long-missing child. It’s also a powerful and haunting examination of a mother’s grief and her long road to recovery. Hester Young’s protagonist, Charlotte ‘Charlie’ Cates, is tough and vulnerable, wounded and fearless, and I simply could not stop reading this thrilling, beautifully written southern gothic mystery. I can’t wait for the next entry in this captivating new series.” —David Bell, author of Cemetery Girl and Somebody I Used to Know
“A stunning debut novel. A lyrical, haunting, heart-wrenching work of suspense with echoes of du Maurier, Hitchcock, and King.” —Reed Farrel Coleman, author of Robert B. Parker’s The Devil
“Step through The Gates of Evangeline with Charlotte Cates, a grief-stricken northerner tasked with uncovering a southern dynasty’s dark secrets. Hair-raising and heart-rending, Hester Young’s first novel is one of buried shame, of children taken too soon, and, ultimately, of immense true love that binds across the mortal divide.” —Miranda Beverly-Whittemore, author of Bittersweet