Spirits in the Trees
SOME FAMILY SECRETS ARE BETTER LEFT BURIED.
An abandoned house, a psychotic killer, and a victim reaching out from the grave. A woman must unearth deadly family secrets before she becomes a ghost herself.
Madeline Anderson goes to Isabelle Island, Washington, to sell a family home abandoned over forty years before. Bizarre things occur the moment she steps on the property. Inside the dilapidated old house, items move about of their own accord. Strange noises come from empty rooms. She has a vivid, recurring dream of a woman running for her life. The wind rustling through the trees sounds like urgent, murmuring voices. When the cacophony dies down, one single word emerges:
At first, Doug Lindstrom, the hot fireman helping Maddy restore the old home, doesn't believe anything is going on. He’s certain Maddy is jumping at shadows because she heard the local kids call the house haunted. That is, until he witnesses horrific violence himself that he can't explain away. After Maddy’s life is threatened not once, but twice, Doug vows there will not be a third time.
While searching for answers, Maddy uncovers astonishing secrets about her aunt's past. Finding more questions then answers, she digs deeper until she stumbles across evidence of a cold case involving a serial killer nicknamed The Seaside Strangler. Together, Doug and Maddy must unmask a killer. The lives they save just might be their own.
WARNING: This book contains mild language, explicit sex and graphic violence.
Read an excerpt:
“And your brilliant idea would be?” Maddy asked, smiling.**My thoughts**
Angie got off the floor, sat on the ottoman across from her and leaned over clasping her hands. “We’re going to have a séance, ask the spirits why they’re here.”
Maddy jerked her hands back. “No way, you have no idea how scary this is. Believe me.”
“Exactly. I’ve always wanted to see a ghost, now here’s my chance!” Angie tried to grab her hands again, but Maddy held them out of her reach.
“No, you don’t understand, this is not a game.”
“Don’t be silly, I’ve seen this done on TV hundreds of times.”
“This could be dangerous, something could go wrong. When I was a kid I remember hearing stories of peopleconjuring up ghosts with the Ouija board. Ghosts that killed and maimed!”
“Those are just urban legends. Besides, we already have the ghosts, and we’re not using a Ouija board.”
Insistently she shook her open hands at Maddy and waited for her to comply.
Maddy stared at her new friend a moment. “I don’t know, Ang, what did you say about malevolent beings?”
“Those are rare. Besides, if you had one of those, you would be dead already. Now shush and give me your hands.”
“Great, I feel so much better.” Her voice dripped with sarcasm. Reluctantly Maddy relinquished her hands.
“Okay, close your eyes and I’ll do the rest.”
Angie was quiet a moment, then said, “We are addressing the spirits that live in this house, tell us why you are here.”
The women sat in silence, waiting.
Maddy squinted with one eye. “It’s not working, maybe we should give up.” She pulled her hands back.
“Shh!” Angie opened her eyes and snatched Maddy’s hands back impatiently. “We are addressing the spirits that live in this house. Show us a sign!” Angie louder this time.
Again, nothing. The women sat in silence looking around the room, then at each other.
Suddenly the fire in the hearth flared up twice its size, reaching out toward them, knocking the screen down with its force. They screamed and jumped out of the way.
A door slammed upstairs, then another. Doors all over the house slammed one at a time.
Maddy swallowed hard. “Ang,” she whispered.
“Shh,” When all was silent again, Angie yelled at the ceiling. “Tell us why you are here?”
“Angie, please. Don’t make them mad!” Maddy pleaded in a hushed tone while she held tight to her friend’s arm.
“It’s okay. They’re just acknowledging our presence.”
Angie assured her, patting her hand.
A crash came from behind.
They spun around.
A lamp from the end table smashed against the opposite wall.
Out of nowhere, a book flew toward Angie, she ducked just in time.
Maddy screamed, her head jerked backward.
“What?” Angie turned in time to see Maddy’s hair floating in the air.
“Someone just yanked my hair, hard!” Maddy answered rubbing the back of her head.
This book reminded me of those movies like Paranormal Activity where all kinds of strange stuff keeps happening to the main character in the possessed house. Only, I didn't find this to be as cheesy as I find those movies. I was reading this really late at night and couldn't put it down. The whole time, I had chills going down my spine and actually made sure I had my hallway lights on. If I heard something, I would eye my dog to make sure everything was okay. Books rarely give me the creeps, but this one sure did.
The idea of spirits staying behind because of unfinished business is one that has intrigued me for a very long time. Tormented spirits are something I have gratefully never encountered, but believe could happen. Would they happen to this extreme? Quite possibly, but usually not. It makes for a great story, though. And yes, I wouldn't mind coming across a Doug in my life. We could all use a hottie to protect us against the boogeyman.
Yes, this is the kind of story that has been told again and again. Yet, I haven't read one in a while. Some of the ones that I have read have been too corny for me to want to continue them. I want to continue to story and see what else is going to happen!
Buy Links: Kindle | Paperback
About the author:
She belongs to Romance Writers of America, the San Diego Chapter, as well as the Kiss of Death Chapter. She resides in San Diego, California where she is busy working on her next novel.
She can be found at www.morganhannahmacdonald.com and