by Judy Moore
After a whirlwind romance, a young woman from California makes a rash decision and marries a handsome Floridian after knowing him for only one month.
She gives up everything she knows to move cross country to live with her new husband, a widower, and his five-year-old son.
Everything seems idyllic until they arrive at her husband's oceanfront home, and she meets her mother-in-law. There's something strange about the woman and the mother/son relationship.
It's not long before her suspicions begin to overwhelm her as she becomes ensnared in the secrets and lies of her new family.
Victoria stepped out onto the patio, ambled around the pool, and stood at the gate, gazing out at the moonlit beach and listening to the waves crash against the shore. She inhaled the moist sea air and basked in the soft touch of the salty air against her skin.
The cool night air felt refreshing until she realized goose bumps had begun to appear on her arms and then across her entire body. Something was off, and it was giving her chills. She had a feeling that she wasn’t alone. A sixth sense told her that someone was watching her.
Her body tensed, and she squinted out into the darkness. Scanning the patio, she slowly turned around toward the house. Then she saw her, saw her silhouette, standing in the window staring down at her. Her mother-in-law didn’t move away from the window, didn’t wave, but just stood and stared down at Victoria. Victoria held her gaze for what seemed like at least a minute. Then, finally, the drape slid across the window, and her mother-in-law was gone.
Judy Moore writes primarily mysteries and thrillers, as well as lighter family fiction. A longtime news writer, editor, and magazine feature writer, her fiction and nonfiction work has been published in numerous national publications. Her novels are published by BTGN publishers. A lifelong Florida resident, she is a former tennis pro and sports writer, so her stories sometimes have a sports backdrop. Her novel "Somebody Killed the Cart Girl" is a golf mystery, and her "Murder in Vail" is set on the ski slopes of Colorado. Her Christmas anthology "Christmas Interrupted," contains three popular novellas: "Airport Christmas," "The Holiday House Sitter," and "The Hitchhiker on Christmas Eve." An earlier novella, "Birds of Prey," and her new novelette "Football Blues," are also available on Amazon.