Monday, November 19, 2018

Secrets in Oak Creek by B.K. Stubblefield

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About the book 
A small town with a dark secret. A new arrival in grave danger. Can she solve the mystery before she ends up the next victim?The best part of Emily's childhood may have been the time she spent with her quirky aunt. So when her favorite relative passes away, she drops everything to attend the funeral in the small town of Oak Creek. But she never expected to inherit her aunt's entire estate, including her massive black dog Bentley. Just as she starts to get the hang of small-town life, an unknown driver runs her off the road and sends her to the hospital.
As doctors tend to her and she makes a connection with a charming Oak Creek resident named Ryan, Emily racks her brain to figure out who would want her dead. When sparks start to fly between her and the Good Samaritan that sat by her bedside, they team up to solve the mystery. Digging into the crime starts to reveal a dark side to Oak Creek and long-held secrets nobody wants revealed. Emily and Ryan must uncover the truth before her assailant comes back to finish the job.

And I thought
Not what I expected.   I expected some suspense.  Maybe a little romance.  And just a good read.  A page-turner.  

Secrets in Oak Creek comes in as my favorite romantic suspense of the year!
this year

What I got was way more.  Secrets in Oak Creek was more than a page turner.  I was turning the pages in the beginning.  And then 
half-way through I was on the edge of my seat.  

The main characters Emily and Ryan meet when Emily is injured in a car accident.  Which turned out to be no accident at all.  And Ryan and his friend saw the whole thing.  As they rush to help Ryan is begged by Emily to look after her dog.  And so a friendship that turns romantic begins. 

And then Emily finds that her aunt had been doing some sleuthing and collecting some information about illegal activities by some important towns people shortly before her death. 

I was surprised with the subject matter of the illegal activities which included dog fighting.  As Emily and Ryan dig they make it their 
mission to help the police to catch the criminals and put them out of business.  

Secrets in Oak Creek was a fast paced read.  There were not alot of characters to keep up with making it an easy read.  

Interesting I felt like Emily and Ryan hijacked the story. (the author discusses this topic in an interview over at Silver Daggers. Click here to read the interview) Not in a bad way.  In a way that they just made me want to finish the story to see what happens.  

I didn't get a feeling that Secrets in Oak Creek part of a series but I would like to see more.  I enjoyed the characters.  I enjoyed the 
story/plot.   

There was a little language Ryan tended to spout a bit when he was surprised about something.   There bedroom scenes are very brief and subtle.  

My MaMa would probably really enjoy this once too!

If your looking for a good suspense with some romance check it out!

I received a complimentary copy.
My review will appear on retail sites and Good Reads.


Read an excerpt
On impulse, she turns the car around and follows the now familiar lane, curious to take another look.
As she slows down, Emily surveys the farmlands on either side of the small country road. She deeply inhales the smell of corn bouncing weightlessly on the warm breeze. A childhood memory floats into awareness, taking her back to when she loved running through endless rows of corn. She remembers when she would stop running and then stand quietly between the rows—not moving, just listening. On some days, the warm wind would whisper her name, beckoning her mind to float to enchanted places in far-away, mystical lands.
She recalls the tingling of her spine when the wind rustles the stalks around her, telling a different story. With her heart hammering fast, she can barely catch her breath. Her feet are rooted to the ground, imagining the rows parting for a faceless shadow that is coming for her. When the spell finally breaks, and fear releases its icy grip, she runs, pumping her legs until she emerges unscathed from the field of corn, feeling safe once again.
Emily smiles at the memory of her childish games as her gaze sweeps the seemingly endless stretching cornfield that is adjoining the property she sees.
She slowly pulls her car to the shoulder and stops where she can view the home between the massive trees in front. Turning off the engine, she sits and watches the home for a few minutes.
You would have been a beauty once, she thinks along with a twinge of nostalgia.
Today, she can clearly see how it may have looked before, her gloomy feelings from just a few days ago replaced with visions of happier times. Windows now boarded up would have gleamed in the early afternoon sun, white wicker furniture on the front porch inviting visitors to sit a while. Lush green Boston ferns in ornate urns would flank the solid oak front door while children played a game of chase with a cute black and white dog. Yes, definitely a dog, she decides.
As if pulled by unseen strings, Emily opens her door and steps out onto the road. Just a quick look, a little bit closer. She hesitantly walks toward the overgrown gravel drive.
She tentatively steps on the drive, and the house comes into view from its side angle. A couple of steps lead up to what appears to be a service entrance. She heads to the front yard where the front porch is badly sagging, barely held up by the once stately Doric columns. A whiff of musty, stale air assaults her nostrils.
Disgusted, she turns away from the crumbling facade. Abandoned, apparently a long time ago—what a pity!
As she turns away, Emily is keenly aware of the eerie stillness around her. Just as the wind in the cornfield softly sighed such a long time ago, the old house seems to reach out, whispering an invitation to explore its long-forgotten interior.
Emily hesitantly steps up two concrete steps, halting on the small landing of the side entrance.
“Hello!” she calls out as she knocks on the door, cocking her head, listening closely. She doesn’t expect anyone to answer, but still. “Hello? Is anyone here?” she repeats. Ignoring her gut’s warnings that she has no business being here, she knocks a second time—and almost jumps as the door opens a small way, rusty hinges shrieking loudly, interrupting the quiet.
Her pulse races as she pushes her hand lightly against the door. She leans forward, glancing around the interior and is immediately assaulted by the same musty smell she had noticed earlier, only stronger.
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