When nobody knows what to do with a troubled, damaged kid, it’s time to call Elizabeth Driscoll. A wary, vulnerable, unusually intuitive young woman, Libby has a knack for helping children others have given up on.
Certainly nobody knows what to do with Tommy Madden, least of all his fiercely devoted guardian, Seattle Police Detective J.D. McCammon. McCammon believes the autistic little boy witnessed a double murder: his mother and his father, the city’s District Attorney. J.D. is determined to help and protect Tommy at all costs, and somehow, find a way to communicate with him.
When Tommy’s life is threatened by the corrupt organization that killed his parents, J.D. and Libby take him on a desperate and dangerous flight to safety. They must place their trust in one another to escape a relentless evil that threatens not only their lives, but also that of the child they’ve both come to love.
On the run, Libby and J.D. are tested to the limits of their courage and resolve. They discover an intimate and mystifying psychic bond that will either drive them apart, or become their greatest source of strength and passion.
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Reviews for The Guardian’s Angel
“I loved it. The author has written such a great story and it is so descriptive, making you feel as if you are the one in danger. (THE GUARDIAN’S ANGEL) is a thriller that leaves you on the edge of your seat from the first page to the last!” ~ Paranormal Romance Guild
“Using a great descriptive style, Ms. Farrelly has written a wonderful story not only of danger and impending doom, but also a love story liberally sprinkled with humor.” ~ Jada Ryker, Author of the TAKES A DARE series“
Powerful and engaging novel — a great blend of romance, character development, and adventure.” ~ Amazon Reader Review
“Brilliant. Funny and heartwarming, but it also drove me to tears. I’m delighted I read THE GUARDIAN’S ANGEL” ~ Demelza Carlton, Author of the OCEAN’S GIFT series
“I loved that this novel had…everything: adventure, action, mystery, romance, and a bit of the supernatural.” ~ Amazon Reader Review
C’mon, either ID the sorry SOB or give it up. I’m freakin’ dead on my feet here.
At the snarled words, Libby Driscoll jumped back as though from a blow. Her pulse raced as a deep voice, gravelly and drawling with fatigue, growled angrily at her. She clutched a hand to her heart as though to keep it from pounding out of her chest.
“They can see me!”
The young, uniformed policewoman standing beside Libby shot a worried glance to the rumpled detective on the other side of the small observation room. He shrugged and rolled his eyes with a resigned Gonna be a lonnngg day expression, then slouched resignedly back against the wall.
The officer, a metallic nameplate reading Alcaraz, C. pinned squarely above her shirt pocket, frowned in concern. She reached out and placed a reassuring hand on the trembling woman’s shoulder.
“No, it’s okay,” Christina Alcaraz said gently. “Don’t be afraid. They can’t see you in here, Ms. Driscoll. That’s one-way glass. I know this is hard for you. It’s scary, and it’s easy to imagine they’re looking right at us, but they really aren’t. Don’t worry, you’re safe in here with Detective Hirsch and me.”
She patted Libby’s shoulder encouragingly. “Just relax, ma’am, and when you’re ready, go ahead and take another look.”
The witness, who at twenty-three looked barely out of her teens, turned distracted, wild blue eyes toward her, and Christina knew there was no way she was going to “relax.” The young cop felt a churning wave of pity and anger.
Three times she’d seen the sickening handiwork of the vicious psychopath the newspapers were calling the University Park Stalker, and so far the police had very little in the way of evidence. He struck fast, kept to the darkness, gave his victims no chance to escape. Elizabeth Driscoll was his third victim, but unlike the first two, assaulted after dark near the south end of the park, she’d been attacked in early morning drizzle while jogging along the deserted Arboretum road.
The Stalker had grown bolder, chancing daylight, gray and bleak though it was.
That single mistake saved Libby Driscoll’s life.
He’d taken her completely by surprise. Launching himself at her from behind, he struck her viciously to the ground. Libby had cried out in shock, at first too stunned to feel the jarring contact of body with pavement. The fall had badly bruised her face, torn the skin on palms and knees and snapped her wrist, but all she’d felt was the massive impact of the man’s body, crushing the air from her lungs and cutting off her cry.
For endless, terrifying moments he’d breathed heavy, fetid air into her ear, ground his hips against her, and, quick as a striking viper, snapped a ligature around her throat. She’d struggled furiously, desperately, but he’d been too strong. As Libby’s life began to slip away in a choked, oily black haze, the Stalker had been surprised in his work by the sudden appearance of a police cruiser in the gray, foggy drizzle.
He’d scrambled up, bolted back into the shelter of trees half-shrouded in dripping mist, and Libby Driscoll – though semi-conscious, bruised, and bloodied – was alive.
A week later, the police informed her a suspect was in custody, and now Libby stood shakily in the observation room. Despite the presence of the officer and detective, she felt desperately alone and terrifyingly exposed.
Once again Christina patted Libby’s shoulder. The cop’s serious, compassionate brown eyes met and held Libby’s distraught blue ones, and gradually the young victim’s panic eased. Libby blinked hard, willing herself to calm down. Her fingers, curled over the end of her cast almost as a fist, relaxed with visible effort. The wrist throbbed dully, like a relentless toothache, and she cradled it close to her body.
“I–I’m sorry,” she stammered, her voice still hoarse from the injury to her throat. “I don’t know what … there was … I was sure I heard one of those men’s voice. I guess maybe I’m still more shaken up than I thought.”
Christina smiled gently. “It’s okay. Just take all the time you need, Ms. Driscoll. I know this is tough for you, but believe me, like I said, none of the suspects can see or hear you in here. You’re completely hidden from them. They can only see their own reflections on the other side, like in a regular mirror.”
She paused, waiting patiently, as Libby still looked unnerved. Christina ignored Hirsch’s long-suffering sigh.
“We’ll go slowly, Ms. Driscoll, one man at a time,” she said. “Take a deep breath, take your time, look at each suspect carefully, tell me if you recognize any of them.”
Shivering slightly beneath the officer’s steadying touch, Libby tried to control the trembling of her hands and the sudden need to swipe at the short, damp, sticky auburn curls that clung to her face and neck.
Though sweating, she was cold to the bone.
copyright by Lorrie Farrelly
About the author
LORRIE FARRELLY is the author of a Western historical romance trilogy, contemporary romantic suspense novels, and sci fi/paranomal romantic suspense novels. A graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz, and Northwestern University, she’s been a Renaissance nominee for Teacher of the Year, a ranch hand at Disneyland’s Circle D Ranch, and a “Jeopardy!” television quiz show champion. Her novels have earned READERS’ FAVORITE 5 STAR AWARDS, and TERMS OF SURRENDER is ORANGE ROSE AWARD finalist. Lorrie and her family live in Southern California.
Also by Lorrie Farrelly
TERMS OF SURRENDER
TERMS OF ENGAGEMENT
TERMS OF TEMPTATION
Interview with Holly Hewson
HH: Lorrie, thank you so much for talking with us at TRS. Your featured book is The Guardian’s Angel. Where did you get the idea for this thrilling tale?
LF: I love the way a bit of the paranormal can shine a spotlight on what’s truly in a character’s heart and mind, so I knew I wanted a paranormal element to the story. Everyone struggles with pain and doubt in life, and everyone yearns for love, trust, and emotional intimacy. When something mysterious and unexplainable occurs, child therapist Libby Driscoll and Seattle Police Detective J.D. McCammon find there may be nowhere to hide, physically or emotionally. With the safety of a young, troubled boy entirely in their hands, J.D. must find a way to keep them all alive, and Libby will need every last ounce of the very thing that most eludes her: trust.
The story begins with assault victim Libby literally hidden in a police station observation room. Police confidently assure her that the suspects behind the one-way glass can neither see her nor hear her.
HH: What do you like best about Libby and what will readers like about her?
LF: Libby’s experiences have left her wary, insecure, and vulnerable, but when she must risk her own physical and emotional safety to help a child, she resolves to do so. I think she’s a character readers can relate to, because we all face things that are difficult for us to do, that may be risky, and we all have fears. Libby’s struggle to overcome her fears keeps us rooting for her to succeed.
HH: What do you like best about J.D. and why will readers love him?
LF: J.D. is one of those tough-on-the-outside, sweetheart-on-the-inside guys. He’s got his issues as well, but his commitment to serve and protect is unwavering. He has a dry sense of humor and is able to laugh at himself, but he takes his responsibilities very, very seriously, and he blames himself when things go wrong. His greatest fear is letting down those he loves.
HH: What makes this work different than anything you’ve written so far?
LF: All of my novels have at least a touch of the paranormal, but “The Guardian’s Angel” has much more than a touch. Many of my characters struggle with emotional intimacy, but thanks to that “something extra” in “The Guardian’s Angel,” Libby and J.D. cannot hide their fears – or their desires – from each other.
HH: What else do you have in store for lucky readers?
LF: I’m working on short stories and another time-travel novel, this one with a Western twist. Sometimes life gets in the way of writing, though, and I always want to do everything all at once!
HH: What inspires you in your writing?
LF: Growing up, I loved spooky shows and Westerns. “The Twilight Zone” was my favorite, and those wonderful writers, among them Rod Serling, Ray Bradbury, Richard Matheson, Charles Beaumont, and Earl Hamner, Jr, grabbed my interest with the supernatural. But in fact, they revealed who we are as human beings, what we believe in, what frightens us, how we love, and how we treat one another. What amazing mentors! And if I had a motto, I think it would be “The greatest of these is love.”
HH: What do you enjoy when you’re not writing?
LF: Family, traveling, teaching, reading, Disneyland, movies and TV. My favorite shows are “Sleepy Hollow,” “The Walking Dead,” “The Returned,” and “Hell on Wheels.” We’re a Mickey family – my son works for Disneyland, and one of my daughters and I both have as well. (The other daughter worked at Chuck E. Cheese, wearing the Chuck E. costume. I got to say, “My daughter, the rat.” LOL)
HH: What are you reading?
LF: I’m always reading about ten things at once, but some of the books I’m currently reading are the new Western romance anthology “Rawhide ‘n Roses,” Laurel Bill’s Alaska history series “Aunt Phil’s Trunk,” and J.D. Robb’s “Concealed in Death.” I’ve just finished Demelza Carlton’s “Welcome to Hell,” Glynis Smy’s “Ripped Genes,” Jennifer McMahon’s “The Winter People,” and Carmen DeSousa’s “Creatus.”
HH: What goals have you set for yourself this year?
LF: I want to release another novel this year, but I also want to spend quality time with my family, including my three grandkids. Not always compatible goals, but I’m working on it!
HH: Where can readers find you online?
LF: FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/LorrieFarrellyAuthor