Long Time Coming
By Patti Fleishman
Dec 12, 2003 - 2:34:00 PM

“From that first touch somehow I knew…”  Everything Joy Hudson had ever wanted was in that touch.  The words that surrounded her were not just sentiments in a song, they were much more. The powerful nature of emotions she felt, the way his eyes held hers now.  It had all happened such a long time ago, eighteen years, to be exact.  Joy still felt the pain in her heart, the ache of longing she couldn’t quite comprehend.  Oh, deep down she knew.  Her body knew.  The culprit, however, was her mind.   It wouldn’t let her relive those moments nor would it allow her to see things as they really were.

While the melody played around her, she was taken back to another place, another time.  Was it really yesterday, or the day before?  Had things happened differently could it all have been stopped or changed? There is only one person who can help Joy in her search for truth and what happened on that fateful night.  But, he is also the reason she has stayed away from her hometown of Wharton, Kentucky.


In one night, Joy’s life had changed and so had the lives of those around her.  Dreams had been shattered, the future had been drastically altered, and enemies were made.  Joy’s best friend, Jenny, had been tragically killed in an automobile accident while driving with her boyfriend, Jeff Bradford, who had miraculously lived.  Although it took Jeff months to recuperate he was able to come to terms with what had happened.  In order to protect Jenny’s character and to shield Joy from guilt, he kept certain pieces of information secretly stored inside his memory.  What he hadn’t known is that by omitting certain facts, Joy’s idyllic memories of he and Jenny were nothing but falsifications.


It took her father’s illness to bring her home to Kentucky, home to a place that housed the nightmares that seemed to plague her under the cover of darkness.  And, as fate would have it, it was the only place she would be able to set herself free.  Would Joy be strong enough to accept the facts?  Would she be able to see through the cloak with which she surrounded herself, in order to protect her fragile heart?


As one of Wharton’s most eligible bachelors, Jeff only remained that way because no other woman could satisfy the needs he kept hidden.  He had realized that there was only one woman who held his heart and she would never know, she would never understand.  How could he make her realize just what she meant to him?  Would he ever have the chance?  Could he ever make her see that it had been her all along?


Do you believe in fate?  Do you believe that destiny can be controlled by the spiritual world?  It’s the only way that circumstances beyond our control can be justified.  As if to tell Joy that she wants her to be happy, to finally be free from the haunting memories of the past, Jenny has her say.


It is through the home she purchases, the house that was once lived in by Jenny and her family, that Joy is able to walk down memory lane.  Many times Jenny comes to her and reaches out to her through mysterious happenings.  Jeff also realizes that even though he meant well, Joy would never be able to come to terms with all that’s happened unless he shares the truth of that night from long ago.


Edie Clair has written a most fantastic novel.  Her descriptions and her characters, all managed to capture my imagination while they told their stories.  It is through their voices and vivid memories that I was whisked away, as if on a roller coaster. They shared their smiles from the past and the heartache that kept them company at night when their eyes closed.  This was a book written with compassion and deep caring.


When the story comes to an end and the lights have been lowered…and the reader is left with a longing to know more...there is no better compliment to the author.  I thank you, Ms. Claire. You took me on a whirlwind adventure, filling my mind with a story I will remember fondly.


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