My husband was away on a business trip recently, and there's a rule of nature that says things will always break when he's away. Light bulbs I can fix; blocked drains; computers that refuse to switch on. I'm really fairly independent. But come night-time, I walk round every room in the house, checking every electrical socket to make sure no plugs are falling out and no wiring's getting warm. I check the cooker, double-check, run my hands over the top. I lock and relock the windows and doors, and look in the garage to see if the car's okay. Then I listen to every creak and groan, the plumbing's moan, the drips from the roof, the patter of critters in the yard.
When I started reading Exposure, by Brandilyn Collins, I felt right at home. The protagonist, Kaycee, knows all about the fears of an empty house. She battles them by writing a humorous column in the paper, and I'm jealous; I want her job. But then things start to happen, little things with big impact and no evidence left behind. Maybe they're just images from Kaycee's subconscious mind. And maybe they don't matter, because someone Kaycee cares for might turn out to be in real danger. Or maybe...
Kaycee's still checking windows and doors, closing curtains, and jumping at sounds that the house spins around her. And I'm jumping too. Jumping more when she sees "it" again.
But hey! My husband's home. I don't need my night-time rituals. Still, Ms. Collins conveys Kaycee's feelings so powerfully I find myself checking electrical outlets again. But I don't switch out the light; I have to keep reading to the end.
Exposure is a very satisfying novel. The twists and turns move naturally, leading the reader to guess and not quite guess, doubt and not quite doubt, till an ending that brings all the different threads together. Do people's worst fears always happen? I have to believe they don't, though I'm sure they sometimes do. And Ms. Collins' novel reminds me that there's ways to cope, and someone out there will hold my hand too if my world falls apart.
I don't want Kaycee's job after all. Her column reads way better written by her. Read the book and I'm sure you'll agree.
Collins' no-nonsense and perfectly honed voice harmonizes with broken and needy characters, hope, and full-on tension in Exposure. Kaycee's story wends throughout this novel, intersecting with another story that hints and then screams of a conclusion that will tie the two together. Kaycee, a recovering fearful person, faces a relapse after a friend faces the worst possible fear and loses. Kaycee discovers that the "healing" she thought she'd found was just her … more
Collins' no-nonsense and perfectly honed voice harmonizes with broken and needy characters, hope, and full-on tension in Exposure. Kaycee's story wends throughout this novel, intersecting with another story that hints and then screams of a conclusion that will tie the two together. Kaycee, a recovering fearful person, faces a relapse after a friend faces the worst possible fear and loses. Kaycee discovers that the "healing" she thought she'd found was just her many fears talked … more
Kaycee Raye is scared of...well...everything. All of her life she has struggled with paranoia and irrational fears, something she believes was passed down from her troubled mother. Kaycee has found a way to deal with the fear by writing a column that has taken on a life of its own and has turned Kaycee into a household name. Up until now the column has been both fun and therapeutic as she has found a way to connect with readers who share many of the same fears and experiences. Unfortunately for … more
Sheila Deeth's first novel, Divide by Zero, has just been released in print and ebook formats. Find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, etc. Her spiritual speculative novellas can be found at … more
Consider the Source
Use Trust Points to see how much you can rely on this review.
Someone is watching Kaycee Raye. But who will believe her? In Kaycee’s newspaper column she’s known for writing of her paranoia and fears. Is the new danger real—or is she going crazy? In this story of terror, twists, and desperate faith, the startling questions pile high. But Kaycee’s descent to answers proves even more frightening.
From the Back Cover When your worst fear comes true. Someone is watching Kaycee Raye. But who will believe her? Everyone knows she’s a little crazy. Kaycee’s popular syndicated newspaper column pokes fun at her own paranoia and multiple fears. The police in her small town are well aware she makes money writing of her experiences. Worse yet, she has no proof of the threats. Pictures of a dead man mysteriously appear in her home—then vanish before police arrive. Multisensory images flood Kaycee’s mind. Where is all this coming from? Maybe she is going over the edge. High action and psychological suspense collide in this story of terror, twists, and desperate faith. The startling questions surrounding Kaycee pile high. Her descent to answers may prove more than she can survive.