• Delilah: The Making of Red (Nova #2.5) Courting Darkness (Otherworld/Sisters of the Moon #10)

    We don’t even make it to the end of the driveway before my dress is already annoying both of us. Every time I take a step, it sounds like we’re about to be whisked away by a tidal wave.

    When we got back to the house, my mother was home. I glanced at my watch; lunchtime. Mom often came back home to eat or, more often, brown-bagged it. Never bought something from town, never went out. That would be wasteful.Hello, you two, she said.

    Fate Interrupted (Fate Interrupted #1)

    I’m going to my room, Poe said. She gave me a look, then, shockingly, a shy hug, fleeting and all the sweeter because of it. My throat tightened.Are you coming over for dinner? I asked.With all the old people? Uh, no. Thanks. She rolled her eyes, but it wasn’t with the usual disgust, then went upstairs.

    The Walls of Air (Darwath #2)

    Mom was in the kitchen, glancing through the mail. I sat down at the table. Like everything in the house, it was sturdy and worn, just like my mother. Last weekend had been Mother’s Day. I’d given her a gift certificate to a spa in Portland—manicure, pedicure, facial, same as I did every year. But this year, I saw her tuck it in the spice rack, and when she was out of the room, I went to check. Sure enough, there were all the other gift certificates from all the other years. She never used them.Then again, she always said what a nice gift it was. She was an enigma, my mother.

    How was your day, Mom?

    Lovely. I can’t wait for our little dinner party later on.He hadn’t left a phone number, either. He had a brother in Pennsylvania—Jeff, eight years older than my father, a man we’d only met twice before. I called him one afternoon when my mom was at a meeting at school—Lily was acting up. There was a long silence after I asked if he knew where my father might be.

    I’m sorry, sweetheart, he said. I don’t. But if I hear from him, I’ll let you know.I could tell by his voice he didn’t think this would happen.

    Echo Burning (Jack Reacher #5)

    Another week crept by. Mom came home on Saturday morning and told us she’d switched her hours so she’d be able to be home with us after school.No one wants you here, Lily said, her voice so cold and cruel I flinched.

    No one asked you, Mom said mildly.And that was the end of our deep family discussion.

    What if Mom had killed Dad? Was that possible? She could lop the head off a sea bass, slide the knife down its belly and gut the thing in seconds... She could use a gun... We lived on an island, so she could dump his body anywhere and let the tides do what they would. I regretted reading the Patricia Cornwell novels I’d been sneaking out of the library, not to mention Stephen King, the patron saint of Maine. Was my father down the well, like Dolores Claiborne’s husband?We didn’t have a well. Mom didn’t talk to the police.

    He had packed. Left his wedding ring. Sure, Mom could’ve faked it, but she didn’t. I knew.He was simply...gone. But Lily and I were the lights of his life. He told us that all the time. He wouldn’t just leave us. He would obviously come back for us.