There are so many sisters, and families, which are blissfully close in books that this story came in different, and got my attention.
Through the Glass by Erica Kiefer (The Window Series, #2) published today in the Romance, Suspense, Young Adult Genre.What Erica tells me about the book, too, is very interesting. Here’s her words for the Series.
Stepping into Grey.
One of the themes explored in Through the Glass is how very grey relationships can be. Now, it’s difficult to use the phrase “shades of grey” without misleading an audience towards a discussion on the popular yet controversial romance trilogy. Let me be clear that I write contemporary YA romance—very clean romance at that—so there’ll be nothing saucy about the content of this post or overly heated between the young love interests in my book. (Did I just lose about half of you? If not, stay with me.) What I do explore, though, with different intensity is how difficult relationships can be when emotions and circumstances do not fit neatly into categorized black and white boxes.
We grow up exposed to structure. Order. We see it all over our nation in government, politics, school, religion. We judge and box things into categories all over the place. Right or wrong? Guilty or not guilty? But what about when it comes to people? How are you meant to feel about someone who is woven so deeply into your life but still hurts you—or someone you love—with a betrayal worth writing about?
The storyline in The Window Series is completely fictional, and yet, perhaps we have all felt the back and forth heart-wrenching pull that makes us question relationships and certain situations in our life. What is the right answer? What is the appropriate response? I found myself exploring these feelings in a poetic piece that inspired pages in my novel. An excerpt from A Story Unseen:
My heart will find its way into writing, a heart that is not pink nor red, nor black nor white. In truth, my heart is grey, worn into shades that blur the rigid lines of love and hate. Of loyalty and scorn. Of truth and lies and all that must be seemingly so defined.
Readers get to feel some of this conflict multiple times with Olivia Cole, the main character in the series as she faces hurt and confusion, love and betrayal. What seems so clear to outsiders remains a muddled mess of indecision, pain, and knowledge she doesn’t want to face. When there are secrets or uncomfortable truths just beyond our immediate sight, psychology refers to them as blind spots—pockets of potentially emotional trauma just waiting to peak our awareness. However, once we cross that path, consequences will ultimately follow. Decisions need to be made. Relationships permanently altered. Is that a step worth taking?
If you’re not yet ready to expose your own blind spots, walk instead beside Olivia Cole as she peers Through the Glass and grapples with her new world of grey.
Still reeling from the discovery of her twin sister, Olivia struggles to face her mother’s betrayal. As Olivia and her friends seek to unravel the dark mystery of how and why the twins were separated, tensions escalate when Emma runs into her sister’s ex—who assumes she’s Olivia. When honesty is abandoned for more secrets and lies, the fallout between the sisters only intensifies. As they sift between truth and deception, it becomes clear that matters of the heart are not as transparent as they may seem.
A page-turning mystery laced with romance and emotional drama, Through the Glass is the satisfying conclusion to the Window Series duology by Erica Kiefer.
Excerpt (from Chapter One, Olivia’s perspective)
I never cared to be an actress. Waltzing across the stage with all eyes on me wasn’t my style, nor was feigning confidence as a different character. I admired them really, the performers who could fool an audience into feeling and believing their words. The very best could pull people into their world within minutes, tugging on heart strings and wrapping the crowd around their little finger.
Turns out my mother was the true actress around here.
I lifted my eyes from my bowl of stew, a fleeting glance landing on Mom as she sipped wine from a goblet. Without even meeting my gaze, her words found me from across the table.
“I’ll take it as a compliment that you haven’t spoken since we sat down for dinner.” She positioned her goblet beside her placemat, careful and precise. Regardless, the red liquid sloshed from side to side, taking a minute to settle.
I tried to hide how my eyes widened. Like an ostrich burying its head in the sand, I bowed mine over my dinner, slipping the spoon into my mouth and forcing myself to swallow another bite. Tasteless, it hit my empty stomach like a punch to the gut. I would never pull this off.
“Are you feeling okay?” Mom asked. She cocked her head to the side, studying me. Her eyes bore into me like a magnifying glass, reading beyond the obvious signs of my discomfort. She could always see right through me.
I scrambled for some line of truth, knowing it was the only way I’d be able to disguise my lie. Stalling, I ran my napkin across my lips, still focusing on the carrots and potatoes inside my bowl. How could I talk to her when I could barely maintain eye contact?
“Does this have anything to do with Andre Steele?” Dad asked. Grateful for the interruption, I found comfort responding to my ally, though he had no idea how deceived he truly was. Until just hours ago, I hadn’t either.
“Um, sort of,” I said, my fingers clenching the napkin in my lap. I couldn’t picture Andre without seeing him with Emma, harboring my twin in his backyard pool house. I’d only just met her after our entire childhood apart, and now we were separated again with more secrets and lies. There would be a time for truth, but that time was not now. Not until we solidified a plan.
Mentioning Andre seemed to fit my unsteady behavior, though. Dad cleared his throat and exchanged a knowing look with Mom, who gave a tight-lipped smile in return. I needed to play along as truthfully as I could, which, considering Andre and I were still unsure about our relationship status, shouldn’t prove too difficult. So, out with the truth.
“Well, we did kiss the other day—” I paused with an exaggerated sigh. “Come on, Dad. Don’t make this more awkward with that face. You’re the one who asked,” I reminded him, not actually wanting to talk about Andre and me either. However, it seemed easier than explaining, “Oh, and by the way, the woman you married separated me from my identical twin and has been using us to run a social experiment.” I wasn’t sure I’d ever be equipped to navigate that conversation about the woman he loved and the mother I trusted.
Used to trust.
Married since 2005, Erica resides in Las Vegas, Nevada with her four children and can often be found satisfying her sweet-tooth with chocolate-chip cookies and a glass of milk. Now and then, she dusts off her collegiate rugby skills and dives back into the game.
Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box (Intl winner would get eBook prizes.