“ECLIPSE LAKE,” BY MAE CLAIR
PUBLICATION DATE: JUNE 21, 2014
Synopsis: Small towns hold the darkest secrets.
Fifteen years after leaving his criminal past and estranged brother behind, widower Dane Carlisle returns to his hometown on the banks of sleepy Eclipse Lake. Now, a successful businessman, he has kept his troubled past a secret from most everyone, including his seventeen-year-old son.
But memories in small towns are bitter and long.
Ellie Sullivan, a nature photographer for a national magazine, has a habit of ping-ponging across the map. Her latest assignment leads her to Eclipse Lake where she becomes caught up in the enmity between Dane, his brother Jonah, and a vengeful town sheriff. When freshly-discovered skeletal remains are linked to an unsolved murder and Dane’s past, Ellie is left questioning her growing attraction for a man who harbors long-buried secrets.
Review: This is the second book I’ve read by author Mae Clair and once again, she does not disappoint! Dane Carlisle grew up in Onyx and Eclipse Lake and was basically a young criminal in his teenage years. Fast-forward fifteen years and Dane has become a very successful business owner of a security company, adopted Jesse when he was six and has been a widower for three years. Before she died, his wife urged Dane to return home and make peace with his brother Jonah, so Dane and his son Jesse fly from San Diego to Pennsylvania on a mission to return to Eclipse Lake and face Dane’s old ghosts. The problem is that Dane never gets the nerve to tell Jesse about his past before getting there.
Ellie is on assignment to photograph Eclipse Lake but quickly witnesses the unearthing of someone’s skeletal remains and meets Jonah, Dane’s estranged brother. A few days later, Dane and Jesse have arrived and are staying in the cabin beside of Ellie’s but she meets Dane when he is in the woods and knocks over her tripod, destroying an expensive lens. Offering her dinner, and the cost of the lens, Dane and Ellie find themselves quickly falling for each other, but that also leaves Ellie caught up in all of the repercussions of Dane’s past and his return to Eclipse Lake. Dane struggles with rebuilding a relationship with Jonah, Jesse struggles with coming to terms with his Dad’s past and both Dane and Ellie struggle with their newfound relationship and new feelings.
Those of you that have followed my blog for awhile already know that I am a huge Mae Clair fan. She was one of the first authors to approach me for a review after starting this blog and we continue to communicate in some way several times a week whether through e-mail or social media. With that being said, don’t think I would give her a great review if it wasn’t completely deserved!! This was such a fantastic book that I sat down to read and did nothing else until a few hours later when I finished it. Mae has an incredible style of writing that pulls you into the plot and makes her books impossible to put down until finished. Her characters are relatable and realistic,struggling with situations or fears that any of us could have. A parent who doesn’t want his son to know about his misspent youth? Yes, I get that completely. Someone estranged from their family that fears returning home to try to make amends? Oh yes, I completely get that! As I was reading this I was thinking that although she wrote this book long before we met, I felt like there was a personal message just for me saying I should try to make amends with family I no longer speak with. Obviously, that’s not the case, but this novel is one of those great reads where you don’t feel as if you are on the outside looking in, but feel as if you a part of the story.
“Eclipse Lake” is fantastic in that it embodies Mae’s suspenseful, mysterious writing but also includes a realistic romance with a widower and a photographer, neither of which know what to do about their feelings, and includes trials of having a teenage child, family ghosts, and more. There is something for every reader in this novel and definitely one that I would recommend to anyone. One more thing that makes Mae Clair really cool – she loves Mothman!
Learn more about Mae Clair by visiting her web page.
Purchase “Eclipse Lake” on Amazon.
*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for an hoenst review.