Title: Heart of Light
Author: T.K. Leigh
Release Date: August 25, 2014
Genre: Romantic Suspense
RECOMMENDED FOR AGES EIGHTEEN AND UP DUE TO EXPLICIT SEXUAL SITUATIONS, STRONG LANGUAGE, AND GRAPHIC VIOLENCE.Twelve years ago, Jolene’s adoptive mother died. Twelve years ago, a man showed up at Jolene’s door and promised to take care of her. Twelve years ago, Jolene was happy.
Then it all changed…
Jolene Bergio has spent the last twelve years of her life asking one question… Why? Why was she left in the custody of a man who would sell her each and every night to the highest bidder? After a few years, she shut off, giving up hope that anyone would ever find her. Until her luck changed one night and she escaped. Twelve years later, she finally feels something she hasn’t felt in a long time… Free.
Scared that her past will find her unexpectedly, she hides away in a rented beach house, trying to distance herself from everyone… Until Dr. Cameron Bowen enters her world and slowly tears down the walls that she has built up over the past twelve years of her captivity. Jolene begins to learn to love again.
And trust again. But when a man from Jolene’s past emerges, will she be able to keep her identity hidden? When lies are told and hearts are broken, will the truth surface in time to bring Jolene back from the shadows that threaten to expose who she really is?
Heart of Light is a captivating story of love, strength, and survival.
Review by Karen Lee
Jolene is finally free. After 10 years of living in hell, she has escaped. She is walking to a beach house on Amelia Island to start over, to escape the horrors of the past. The feeling of the sun on her face and the smell of the ocean are enough to lift the darkness that has surrounded her for the last decade. For the first time in years, she will not have to be the blond haired, blue eyed woman, sold to the winner of high stakes poker game, for them to use at their will.
When Cameron realizes someone is renting his beach house, he is livid. No one should be in that house if she isn’t going to be there. Olivia chose Alex, and with that decision broke his heart and his spirit. When he arrived to meet the tenant, from a distance, she looked just like Olivia. She has brown wavy hair and a gorgeous figure but the closer he got to her, the less she looked like Olivia. This woman has the bluest eyes and is exhibiting a feisty personality so unlike Olivia. She was also was very frightened of someone or something. Too nervous to give her real name, Jolene began using the alias Tomorrow with her new landlord and her other new friends at a bar she got a job at.
Cameron is intrigued by the beautiful, young woman with the mysterious past. With Cam’s professional experience with abused women in his psychiatric practice, he see the signs of someone who has probably been physically, emotionally or sexually abused. She tenses when someone touches her, even in the most innocent of ways and will have a full blown panic attack when a sight or sound triggers a memory of the horrors she has lived. With Cam’s patience and growing affection, Jolene reveals her true identity and parts of her past to the first man to not hurt her in years. But the past sometimes does find you, and the evil man who held her prisoner is frantic to find her. Will he find her and drag her back to that life? Will Cam with the help of some friends be able to save her, both her body and soul?
OMG Cam is back! If you read the Beautiful Mess series then you met Cam and the very yummy Alex Burnham, who also makes an appearance. However, this is a standalone book. Great book about a heartbreaking reality for thousands of women right here in the US. You do get a HEA but there are some tears along the way.***** 5 stars
“Why don’t you like being touched?” he asked quietly in a bold move.
Jolene stopped dead in her tracks, glaring at him. “I just don’t, alright?” she hissed, her voice raised. “And it’s none of your fucking business why I act the way I do. I see what you’re trying to do, Doctor.” She spun around and stormed back toward the house, wanting to get far away from his prying, yet consoling, eyes.
“What, Jolene? What am I doing? I just want to get to know you. I want to spend time with you, and I need to know why certain things set you off so that I don’t do them!” He ran along the shore, catching up to her, stopping short when he almost reached out and grabbed her arm to force her to talk to him.
Feeling him approach behind her, she reeled around. The expression on her face was fierce. “You’ve been a therapist for far too long. You need to get it out of your head that you can help me.” The ocean wind whipped her hair in front of her face and her voice rose in anger. “You can’t! No one can! So just stop! Stop taking an interest in me! Stop with the whole nice guy act because, based on my experience, that’s all it is!” she cried through her tears, her voice becoming barely audible. “A fucking act.”
She closed her eyes and inhaled deeply before opening them, the pain of what she had experienced the past decade of her life visible in the look of unease on her face. She took a step closer, her eyes remaining glued to Cam’s.
“You show up on my doorstep acting like my savior when the world has gone to shit. You tell me how you’ll look after me and protect me. And you know what those are?” She could see the hurt that her words were causing him, but she didn’t care.
“Lies, Cam,” she said quietly. “Just lies. You say you’ll help me and watch over me, but you’ll turn. I can’t… I can’t go through that again. Please. I beg you. Just stay away from me.” She spun around and began walking briskly away from him.
“You don’t have to do this, Jolene!” he shouted, running to catch up with her. “You don’t have to choose fear.”
“Yes, I do,” she insisted, turning to face him once more. “It’s the only way that he won’t…”
“You can choose me instead,” he interrupted.
Her breath caught at his unexpected reply. “Cam, I…” She trailed off, hiding her tear-filled eyes.
“Don’t let your fear control you, Jolene,” he implored, his voice soft. He brought his body close to hers. “Please, choose me, not fear.”
About the Author
When she’s not planted in front of her computer, writing away, she can be found running and training for her next marathon (of which she has run over fifteen fulls and far too many halfs to recall). Unlike Olivia, the main character in her Beautiful Mess series, she has yet to qualify for the Boston Marathon.
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$100 Amazon Gift Card, (10) Signed Paperback of Heart of Light