Today’s feature is a new download (and author) for me: Seven Days of Us, by Francesca Hornak…
Intro: (Prologue – November 17, 2016) (Olivia – Cape Beach, Monrovia, Liberia, 1:03 a.m.)
Olivia knows what they are doing is stupid. If seen, they will be sent home—possibly to a tribunal. Never mind that to touch him could be life-threatening. But who will see them? The beach is deserted and so dark she can just see a few feet into the inky sea. The only sound is the swooshing drag of the waves. She is acutely aware of the tiny gap between their elbows, as they walk down to the surf. She wants to say, “We shouldn’t do this,” except they haven’t done anything. They still haven’t broken the No-Touch rule.
Teaser: (Emma – The Attics, Weyfield Hall, 5:30 p.m.)
Emma knelt in the main attic, holding the box of Christmas decorations. Originally, it had held a gingerbread house kit, bought one Christmas when the girls were small. On the lid was a photograph of two children in wonderfully retro jumpers, marveling at their perfect gingerbread house (p. 57).
Synopsis: A week is a long time to spend in quarantine with your family.
It’s Christmas, and for the first time in years the entire Birch family will be under one roof. Even Emma and Andrew’s elder daughter—who is usually off saving the world—will be joining them at Weyfield Hall, their aging country estate. But Olivia, a doctor, is only coming home because she has to. Having just returned from treating an epidemic abroad, she’s been told she must stay in quarantine for a week…and so too should her family.
For the next seven days, the Birches are locked down, cut off from the rest of humanity—and even decent Wi-Fi—and forced into each other’s orbits. Younger, unabashedly frivolous daughter Phoebe is fixated on her upcoming wedding, while Olivia deals with the culture shock of being immersed in first-world problems.
As Andrew sequesters himself in his study writing scathing restaurant reviews and remembering his glory days as a war correspondent, Emma hides a secret that will turn the whole family upside down.
In close proximity, not much can stay hidden for long, and as revelations and long-held tensions come to light, nothing is more shocking than the unexpected guest who’s about to arrive…
What do you think? Do the snippets grab you? Would you keep reading?