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J. S. Winn

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Out of the Shadow
by J. S. Winn   

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Publisher:  Createspace ISBN-10:  B008PYM59C Type: 


Copyright:  July 26, 2012 ISBN-13:  9781480043176

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Author J. S. Winn

Having survived a rape and her husband's murder, all Becca Rosen wants to do is move on with her life. But how can she when she's being stalked by a psychopath and pursued by shadows from her past.

 Out of the Shadow tells the story of two women drawntogether in the present to uncover a crime from the past

Out of the Shadow tells the story of two women drawn together in the present to uncover a crime in the past.

Having survived a rape and her husband’s murder, all Becca Rosen wants to do is move on with her life, but how can she when she’s being stalked by a psychopath with an attitude—and an agenda. The police are no help because they’re convinced, with her history of mental illness, Becca has faked the rape to get away with her husband’s murder. On top of that, Becca has begun to have flashbacks and nightmares of childhood abuse, possibly at the hands of the rapist. Not knowing where to turn, and feeling like she might go crazy again, Becca hires Psychologist, Sarah Abrams, to help her unearth who’s behind the crimes of the past…and the present.

Three men come into Becca’s life around the same time. While each of these men has his charms, Becca can’t be certain whether any one of them is the real killer. Or could it be someone else? Together Becca and Sarah start on a course of hypnotherapy to discover the abuser’s identity. Will their work reveal the real killer before it’s too late, or will Becca once again fall prey to this demented criminal?

Chapter 1

She had been dreaming…perhaps was dreaming still. But the moment David crawled into bed beside her, the dream slipped away. Unable to recall even a vaguely remembered segment of the dream, Becca stretched, glanced at the clock, which read 3:02, and snuggled up to the warm body next to hers. Then she caught a whiff of scent that was strangely disorienting. His hand came down over her mouth.

Surprised, she made a muted appeal, tried to squirm out from under him. Was he being playful in the middle of the night? She couldn’t imagine it.

The hand pressed down harder. “Don’t move or scream or I’ll kill you,” said a muffled voice through what appeared to be a ski mask.

Becca reacted with the horror of a dreamer unable to run from her assailant. Wild with fear, she made an effort to cry out , but it was useless with the hand covering her mouth. She jerked her head to the side to loosen his grip, but he held on firmly. She was at his mercy.

Was this actually happening to her, or was it all part of a horrific nightmare? She pounded palms into the intruder’s chest, but with his superior strength, he managed to roll on top of her, pinning her beneath him. Barely able to breathe under him, she pressed her legs together in a desperate attempt to keep him out, but he jerked up her nightgown. Tore off her panties as if they were paper. Pried open her legs. And violently forced himself into her.

Becca screamed, fought back, tried to dislodge him, but he clamped down on her arms with his. Another scream escaped her lips.

“Shut up,” he said, “Or you’re dead.”

She swallowed the cry that rose to her throat; stifled the desire to kick and flail. Her brain raced, her muscles tensed. “Please God, please God, please God,” loped through her mind with the insistence of a demanding child. A loud buzzing sound filled her head.

He groaned and moved harder against her. Her insides felt as if they were being torched. Pain followed every thrust. The more she struggled, the more it hurt, but she couldn’t lie still for long. He continued to hump steadily, ignoring her efforts to dislodge him, until she managed to free a hand long enough to smash her palm against his jaw and, with all of her might, shove him away. He reached up and slapped her across the face with such force that tears sprang into her eyes. It was over for her, there was no winning this war. She shut down her mind, felt her awareness leave her body; becoming numb to his ongoing assault. After what seemed like an eternity, he grunted and collapsed onto her, his body slick with sweat and sickening to the touch.

The clock showed 3:15 a.m. when he finally lifted off of her. “Be quiet,” he snapped. “Don’t move or call out, if you know what’s good for you.”

Becca watched, stunned, while he hurriedly pulled up his pants. Even in the dark with his back to her and a ski mask obliterating his face, something seemed eerily familiar about him. But what was it? Did she know her attacker? Before she could consider, he turned back to her and said, “You haven’t seen the last of me.” Then he was gone.

Becca lay paralyzed for a few agonizing minutes. Then she rolled onto her side in a fetal position, wrapping her arms around her knees, clutching herself. Every cell in her body quivered, every muscle quaked. Bile rose, sickening and sour, at the thought of the rape. Horror gripped her; nausea followed. She felt defiled. Disgusted. With slow, deep breaths she tried to calm the churning inside.

Minutes passed before she could lever herself up and lower her legs over the edge of the bed. A burning sensation flamed in her crotch, causing tears of fear and fury to run down her face, dampening her nightgown.

She listened closely, reassured by the silence around her, then stumbled from bed on legs that shook like jelly, tripping over bedclothes tossed carelessly to the floor. She had to steady herself with a hand on the footboard before she could tiptoe toward the living room.

All at once she remembered David. What had happened to him? Why hadn’t he been there to protect her? Another wave of terror gripped her and she wrapped her arms around herself. Something was terribly wrong. David might not be the most attentive husband on the planet, but he would have reacted to the break-in. He would have done something!

Becca hesitated at the entrance to the living room before working up the nerve to switch on the overhead light. She immediately spotted David sprawled across the sofa in a pool of blood.

In a panic she rushed to his side and tried to take a pulse. Although faint, his heart still beat. Relieved, she tore open his blood-soaked shirt and pants. The extent of the wounds on his chest and stomach could not be determined because of the absence of coagulation.

What to do now? All her years of nurse’s training fled her the moment she spotted him, but she had to think fast. On impulse she rushed into the kitchen and wet down a towel, returning to soak up a profusion of blood. With the towel pressed against a deep gash on his belly, she hoped to arrest further blood flow.

She scooped David’s cell off the coffee table and dialed 911. “Please help me,” she wailed into the receiver. “I’ve been raped and my husband’s been stabbed.”

By the time the police thundered into the apartment, followed by two paramedics, Becca cradled David’s head in her arms. A policewoman took her aside to prevent her from interfering with the paramedic’s effort. Huddled in the corner with the cop by her side, she again glanced at the clock on the mantle: 3:42 a.m. So much had happened in such a short time, it seemed surreal. It struck her as strange that she could measure such a monumental life change in mere minutes.

The paramedics immediately went to work, attempting to revive David. After vain attempts at cardiac resuscitation with shots of adrenaline and epinephrine, and shocks from a defibrillator, one of the paramedics turned to her.

His flat eyes told her everything.

Professional Reviews

Simply Amazing!
Where do I start! What a fantastic read! I loved this book; I really couldn't put it down.

Out Of the Shadow is one of, if not THE best thriller I've read in quite a while. From the very beginning, Becca's story sucks you in and then twists and turns like a twisty turny thing! This novel takes off at a very fast pace from the beginning and continues as such throughout the book right until the very well concealed end. The plot was superb, the writing excellent and the clues and the way the stories tie into each other were very clever and I loved it.

This story is so realistic as the characters come to life in this murder mystery, with the female character being stalked and shadows from her past pursuing her. Becca is so mixed up and doesn't know who she can trust. I'm not giving anymore away as it will spoil it.

Out Of The Shadow peels away personalities, motivations, underlying motives, and dark, long-hidden secrets that immerse a circle of people in a web of dangerous associations.The conclusion is riveting, unexpected, and as satisfying as the rising psychological suspense which begins from the first page and ends with a bang. Ms Winn deserves huge respect for her work and effort and I strongly urge everyone to give this book a go even if it's not what you normally read as it's well worth it. You will not be disappointed!

I look forward to reading more from Ms Winn and I intend to track down her previous works too. Well done, a wonderful success and 5 well deserved stars!

By Kay G for Bex 'n' Books

The Best Mystery Novel I have read this year!
If you want a mystery novel that captivates you from the very first page and won't let you put it down - this is it!! The author pulls you in and will not let you go until the last page. This books is very well written and there are definitely no "slow" parts in it at all.
Becca is raped in her bedroom and finds her husband dead on the couch. The police can find no evidence anyone has been in her apartment, so they finger her as the prime suspect. Becca embarks on her own investigation and psychotherapy to solve her own case. She encounters three different men (and one of them is stalking her), but the reader does not find out "who done it" until the last page.
This is a real page turner and I was very pleased with how it all ended. I sure did not have it figured out!! J.S. Winn's writing reminds me of Mary Higgins Clark's books and she is a fave mystery writer of mine. I cannot WAIT until Winn writes another book. It will DEFINITELY be on my to-read list. Please don't keep us waiting too long, J.S. Winn!!

Absolutely amazing book!
`Out Of The Shadow' was one of the best thrillers I have read this year. Winn created a spine tingling, action-packed, suspense-filled, novel that will have you on the edge of your seat until the very last page.

I loved this novel so much. The twists and turns were so creative. I was definitely thrown for a loop on the whole `who done it' part. She was very good at concealing her bad guy up until the end, which is a very tricky thing to do when it comes to writing mysteries. Becca's story draws you in from the very first page, maybe even the very first sentence for some of you. I know I was hooked from the first sentence, this novel just takes off as a very fast pace from the beginning and is a steady ride throughout the book. This is a big plus and very hard to do, so I give her a lot of credit and much respect for that accomplishment.

The plot was amazing, the writing was brilliant, her clues and the way the stories tie into each other was so brilliant and I loved it.

I really love stories like this they are such entertaining reads and you really cannot put them down. `Out Of The Shadow' was no different I read through it quickly because I couldn't wait to see what happened next. This action-packed read is a must have in your suspense collection. I really loved `Out Of The Shadow' and everything about it. I recommend it to any mystery or thriller fan or anyone who just wants to sink their teeth into a good book.

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