Monday, September 9, 2013

Blog Tour: In the Shadow of Revenge by Patricia Hale

In the Shadow of Revenge

by Patricia Hale

on Tour September 1-30, 2013

Book Details:

Genre: Mystery/Suspense
Published by: Carina Press
Publication Date: July 15, 2013
Number of Pages: 280 ISBN: 978-14268-9584-5
Purchase Links: 


Everybody thought brilliant Cecily would leave dead-end Miller's Falls for something better. But a two-decades-old tragedy locks her in place. Few understand the fierce bond that Cecily and Amelia share with Hilary, who was assaulted one summer as the two other girls watched helplessly. It's a bond of love and guilt…and a desire for vengeance that cuts clear to the bone. So Assistant DA Cecily Minos waits, eager to see the guy in her courtroom. When Amelia meets a man who has the tattoo the girls remember seeing that day, they think they've finally caught a break. But the police refuse to reopen the case, and it's up to Cecily and Amelia to pursue their suspect. Their investigation soon uncovers secrets best left buried. But the law is slow, and they've waited long enough for revenge…

Read an excerpt:

My lungs were tight as fists and the voice inside my head said run, but my legs couldn’t be trusted. Standing up wouldn’t have gotten me out of there, it would only have drawn attention to the pee that was warm in my shorts and it might have gotten Hilary killed if he was serious about running that blade across her neck. All of a sudden the man stood and keeping his back to us, lowered the kerchief and put a cigarette in his mouth. Hilary never moved though I saw her blink. She was looking at something far away like she was somewhere else entirely and I hoped that that was true so she wouldn’t have to know what happened. He pulled his baseball hat low over his face the same way it’d been when we first climbed into the railcar and without ever looking at us he jumped to the ground and walked away. “Stay here,” I’d told Amelia, though I knew she wasn’t going anywhere. And I ran. I ran faster than I’d ever run not even caring about the pee burning the inside of my legs. I’d taken the woods instead of the path, running in the opposite direction from the way he’d gone. My legs were scraped and bleeding by the time I’d reached the road and the stitch in my side had made it almost impossible to breath, but I just kept thinking of Hilary laying there and I couldn’t stop until I was pulling open my own back door. I ran into the kitchen and through the house until I found my mother kneeling beside her bed, rosary beads draped around her prayerful hands like a spider web. I stood in the doorway and looked at her, imagined wrapping my arms around her neck and her drawing me in, holding me. I imagined feeling safe. She glanced at me standing there then dismissed me with a nod of her head, knee deep in Jesus. I turned and ran for the telephone.

Author Bio:

Patricia Hale is a graduate of the MFA program at Goddard College in Vermont. She is a member of Sister’s in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, NH Writer’s Project and Maine Writer’s and Publisher’s Alliance. Her essays and articles have appeared in New England literary magazines and the anthology, My Heart’s First Steps. When not writing, she enjoys hiking with her dogs and kayaking on the lakes near her home. Patricia lives in New Hampshire with her husband and two German shepherds.

Catch Up With the Author:

Consider me impressed with author Patrica Hale's debut novel, In The Shadow of Revenge. This story centers around three childhood friends, Cecily, Hilary and Amelia, and a tragic event involving the trio. The stunted versions of lives they now lead as adults turns mysterious when someone from their past shows up ensnaring them in a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse. I can't reveal much about this tale but I read it through in one sitting, not wanting to leave this small town mystery.

Cecily is the narrator and with her strong, determined voice we experience second-hand what she's been dealing with. Living with the ghost of tragedy has affected the the lives of herself and her two friends. As nine-year-old girls, they were forced to grow up suddenly, unprotected by the adults in their lives. In their small Maine town, we see Cecily's life with a overtly religious mother and an absentee father who abandoned their family. Her older brother Jarod is horrible and abusive so she spends time with Hilary, who has a less than stellar family as well. Amelia rounds out their group. Parts of their childhood are revealed as we see them as the damaged adults they became. The past haunts the present. Cecily is a lawyer living with Ben, a man she's not sure she can commit to since she's frequently busy taking care of Hilary, a recovering alcoholic, and watching out for Amelia and her one night stands. Each woman handles the trauma in their own way and they vowed as kids to never break apart their friendship.

There's a paranormal thread weaved throughout the book concerning Cecily and her grandmother's "gift" which gave the story a cool vibe. I loved the way Cecily described things and people in her life. She had some great lines and her outlook made the story visually stimulating. Her observations about her childhood and about her mother are so well stated they are the lines readers like to stop reading in order to reread again. Rich. Poignant. Heartbreaking at times. The mystery had me going for a while, trying to figure out what exactly was going on. The friendships between the three stood out, enriching the story. I did feel Hilary and Amelia could have been fleshed out a bit more. As for the secondary characters, I liked police officer Marquette from his first scene and Ben was a nice guy. The antagonist was just that-really bad and realistically so. The pacing was consistent and there were some tense scenes which kept me riveted.

I don't read many mysteries so when I do I want to get sucked into them. In The Shadow of Revenge intrigued me from its first pages and kept me enthused with its rich descriptions, brutally honest depictions of realistic characters, small town life, and how evil can penetrate the fabric of anyone's life--even a child--and yet, time, good friends and selfless love can help one persevere. Sometimes, through revenge, wrongs can be righted enabling those who've suffered to get on with their lives. A gripping read.

Rating: 4

Cover comment:
Upon first inspection, it is easy to dismiss this cover as boring. The train tracks are symbolic and play an important role in the story so I like the cover.

Book source:
I received a promotional copy in return for my honest review during a blog tour.

Tour Participants:


  1. Thanks so much for reviewing my book In the Shadow of Revenge. Glad you liked the characters. I'm working on the next in the series!

  2. I would love to win and read this book. It has a great storyline.

    cenya2 at Hotmail dot com