I apologize for my absence from this blog for the last month, but hope you all have been too busy with holidays to notice. My excuse? I’ve been hard at work revising my fourth novel, HAWKINS LANE, and revising takes the kind of concentration that leaves other things untended. I sent it off to New Libri Press this morning, so now I can relax and tell you about it. As with my other novels, place is a powerful shaper of character and destiny, and my friends in the Pacific Northwest have been waiting for a story set in the country where I have now lived for ten years. Here it is.
HAWKINS LANE, set in the Cascades, is about the power of the past to destroy the best of relationships—the story of love gone wrong.
Ned Hawkins is the son of a murderer and member of a family shunned by the people of McKenzie Crossing. Ned fears he shares his father’s violence and the doom of the Hawkins clan. Erica, spirited daughter of the town’s new doctor, is fighting but trapped in her family’s expectations. They meet on a mountain stream where their love of the mountains overcomes their dissonant background, and they fall in love. For Ned, Erica opens a future he had given up on. For Erica, Ned anchors her restless spirit and opens an alternative path.
They become forest rangers, and their marriage and life as rangers in the North Cascades gives them a daughter and the mountain life they love, but when Ned’s father is released from prison, his foreboding returns full-blown, certain that he has drawn Erica and Bonnie into the fate of the Hawkins. Erica rebels against his gloom and over-protectiveness, and the increasing conflict sets off a chain of disasters that begins with a near fatal accident and ends with the disappearance of Bonnie, their daughter and finding the body of Ned’s brother in the stream below their house.
The search for their child and the investigation into the death brings both face-to-face with the destructive power of their pasts. They returns to their mountain home much changed.
“In a month, the alders and evergreens would take up everything that had happened and fold it into their branches. Could it do the same for them?”