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Wendy Catalano, a newly remarried mother of four, finds herself, her husband and her children, murder victims of her ex-husband. A family heirloom takes her back in time to the beginning of her relationship with her eventual killer where she’s given the magical opportunity to change the future and stop her family's tragic ending. But she isn't aware that she's reliving a tortured life. With only glimpses of the future, Wendy struggles to survive present day, unaware that a bloody and unforgiving destiny awaits her.
The Fortuna Coin is a haunting psychological thriller about domestic violence and second chances…but will the truth really set Wendy free?
Some kind of primal survival instinct brought me to life. I flailed my arms, terrified of the rising water.
I don’t want to drown. Why didn’t the crash kill me?
I couldn’t move. The passenger door was wedged into my back and side. Sharp pain invaded my senses. I attempted to wiggle my legs, but they wouldn’t respond. Blood dripped from my nose and mouth. My mind grew thick and heavy.
Josh’s broken body had gone through the windshield. I watched as he bobbed once, then went under. I didn’t want my last coherent thoughts to be filled with hate toward the man who had killed my entire family.
No, he isn’t worth it. He never has been.
The river water rose quickly. In a matter of seconds, it lapped the base of my neck. It was so very cold.
In an hour, maybe two, someone would notice the guard rail down and curiosity would drive them to look over the edge. This part of the river wasn’t quite deep enough to fully submerge the truck. Someone would see part of it sticking out of the water and call the authorities. They’d find my drowned body, and then they’d discover the girls and Ben. Or maybe it would be the other way around?
It didn’t matter anymore.
Poor Mom. This will destroy her.
As my eyes fluttered closed, I felt Harper’s slender arms encircling me in a brief hug.
Then Ben’s lips caressed mine.
Taking a deep breath, the cold water washed away the fear in my heart. I’m ready to join them.
Suddenly, a stabbing dig to my wrist popped my eyes back open and I struggled to free my arm.
When my hand cut through the water, the eroded face on the Fortuna coin stared back at me.
A rush of water went over my head. I held my breath as I fought against the bent metal that pinned me inside the truck.
The flash of light caught my attention and I stopped moving. The coin glowed a soft golden hue beneath the grainy water.
My last glimpse of the face showed that it had been restored to its original state. The bearded man had chiseled features and wore a crown.
How very odd…
Then the darkness swept in and carried me away.
5 out of 5 (exceptional)
You know how the blurb of a book stirs your interest? And then, if you're really fortunate, the book itself is so much better than anything you could have expected? Well, that was THE FORTUNA COIN for me.
This book is exactly what it says it is about - second chances and domestic violence. It doesn't pretty it up. It's all there, especially in the first few scenes. If you have any kind of triggers wrapped up in domestic violence, please be warned.
We go with Wendy as she time-travels back to the past, the chance to do-over her life. She has hard choices to make, and she does them selflessly. It costs her a lot in one way, but she is enriched in another. She makes good friends and has her four daughters, all over again.
I can't say too much without giving away parts of the storyline, but I will say I was completely enthralled. I knew how I wanted Wendy to act, and I hated it when she didn't. But it was all for her reasons, not mine, so I guess it makes sense!
There is so much I want to say but can't, for fear of ruining it for someone else. I read this book in one-sitting, unable to put it down. It is a mixture of supernatural, contemporary, romance, and suspense - all delivered with perfect pacing and tension.
This was a fantastic story that I feel lucky enough to have read, and I have no hesitation in highly recommending it! Just watch out for triggers.
** same worded review will appear elsewhere **
* A copy of this book was provided to me with no requirements for a review. I voluntarily read this book, and the comments here are my honest opinion. *
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Excerpt from The Fortuna Coin by Karen Ann Hopkins
You can visit Karen Ann Hopkins at her website:
Karen Ann Hopkins resides in northern Kentucky with her family on a farm that boasts a menagerie of horses, goats, sheep, peacocks, chickens, ducks, rabbits, pigs, dogs, and cats. Karen rescues and fosters a variety of pets and farm animals, but she also finds time to give riding lessons, coach a youth equestrian drill team, and of course, write. She was inspired to create her first book, Temptation, by the Amish community she lives in. The experiential knowledge she gained through her interactions with her neighbors drove her to create the story of the star-crossed lovers, Rose and Noah.
Karen grew up about a mile from Lake Ontario in Upstate New York. She was bitten by the horse bug at the age of five, and after diligently taking riding lessons for several years, was rewarded with her first horse at the age of eleven. The feisty horse's name was Lady, a Quarter Horse-Thoroughbred cross, who became Karen's steadfast companion. Through the years, the constant force in her life was horses. Eventually, she found her place as a riding instructor herself. Before accepting her fate in the barnyard, she worked a short stint as a paralegal, traveled abroad, and guided tourists on horseback riding tours in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.
Karen is currently working on her Amish mystery series, Serenity's Plain Secrets, along with several new projects.
TEMPTATION, BELONGING, FOREVER, DECEPTION: YA Temptation Series, originally published by Harlequin Teen. Currently in development with Wishing Floor Films
LAMB TO THE SLAUGHTER, WHISPERS FROM THE DEAD, SECRETS IN THE GRAVE, HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT, PAPER ROSES, EVIL IN MY TOWN, FORBIDDEN WAYS, SWEET REGRETS, UNHOLY GROUND, BLOODY TIES, THE WIDOW, WICKED LEGACY, BLOOD ROCK, and THE OFFERING: Adult Amish-themed Crime Fiction/Mysteries, Serenity's Plain Secrets Series
EMBERS, GAIA, TEMPEST, ETERNITY: YA Paranormal/Thriller, Wings of War Series
WILLOW CREEK: Contemporary Romance published with HarperCollins/One More Chapter
THE FORTUNA COINT: Psychological Thriller