Although I love my physical books, one of the joys of electronic ones is that books not yet out in the UK are still available to me as a reader. One such book is the brand new The Neighbors by Hannah Mary McKinnon. Although I haven’t had chance to read The Neighbors yet, I do have an extract to share today.
The Neighbors is available for purchase here.
Abby looks forward to meeting the family who just moved in across the street – until she realizes they’re the one couple who could expose her deepest secrets.
After a night of fun back in 1992, Abby is responsible for a car crash that kills her beloved brother. It’s a mistake she can never forgive, so she pushes away Liam, the man she loves most, knowing that he would eventually hate her for what she’s done, the same way she hates herself.
Twenty years later, Abby’s husband, Nate, is also living with a deep sense of guilt. He was the driver who first came upon the scene of Abby’s accident, the man who pulled her to safety before the car erupted in flames – the man who could not save her brother in time. It’s this guilt, this regret, that binds them together. They understand each other. Or so Nate believes.
In a strange twist of fate, Liam moves into the neighborhood with his own family, releasing a flood of memories that Abby has been trying to keep buried all these years. Abby and Liam, in a complicit agreement, pretend never to have met, yet cannot resist the pull of the past – nor the repercussions of the terrible secrets they’ve both been carrying….
An Extract from The Neighbors
The faint voice floated toward me. Gliding smooth as a paper airplane from somewhere in the midst of the fog swirling through my brain. Orange lights flashed in a steady rhythm and—
I wondered if I’d uttered the words, but I hadn’t moved my lips. Hadn’t moved at all. Couldn’t. It hurt too much. Everything hurt too much.
Moments passed, and I tried to string together the few wispy fragments my mind allowed me to cling to. My arms, chest and legs were pressed against something hard and uncomfortable—the ground, not my soft bed—but the reason why I found myself in that position escaped me entirely. And I was too exhausted to care.
A breeze softly brushed across my cheek. The pavement beneath me felt warm, and despite the distinct taste of rust invading my mouth, I could smell freshly cut grass. Hadn’t I been—
“Help me, Abby.”
The voice was too low to be mine. A man’s then—it had to be. Why wouldn’t he let me sleep? My eyes felt heavy and impossible to open, so I let my thoughts start pulling me away, ever so slowly, to the deliciously inviting state of unconsciousness.
Rest would have to wait. Against my better judgment I raised my head, each millimeter expending energy I didn’t think I had and causing pain to shoot through every part of my body like a thousand burning hot pins. I tried, but my legs and lower back stubbornly refused to budge even the tiniest amount, as if I’d been nailed to the ground.
I forced my eyes open.
And I saw him.
“Tom.” My own voice this time, barely a whisper. “Tom.” A little stronger, louder.
My brother lay a few meters away in what had been my blue Ford Capri, but which was now an upturned carcass of broken glass and mangled steel. The flashing of the hazard lights illuminated Tom’s bloody face and body every few seconds, a perverse freak show. He hung upside down. Unlike me, he was still in the car, somewhere between the front and back seats, his arms and legs bent at impossible angles. Eyes wide and glazed. Staring at me. Desperate. Begging.
“Abby,” he said once more, and I watched as he attempted to lift his arms, tried to reach for me. “I can’t get out.” Tears rolled up his forehead, mixing with a steady stream of blood from the deep gash above his eye that looked like a second mouth. “I can’t get out.”
(Now I really do need to read the rest of The Neighbors!)
About Hannah Mary McKinnon
Hannah Mary McKinnon was born in the UK and grew up in Switzerland. Unsurprisingly she loves chocolate, mountains and cheese, and books, of course.
After an (early) mid-life crisis, Hannah found herself in her forties and one morning decided to follow her oldest passion; she started writing and never wanted to look back.
Hannah’s first novel, Time After Time, a lighthearted, romantic read, was published by HarperCollins AVON in June 2016. Her second novel, The Neighbors is a domestic suspense story, and will be published by MIRA in North America in March 2018.