Six friends—inseparable since childhood—seek immediate revenge after one of them is brutally attacked. But their vigilante justice spins violently out of control and leaves the attacker dead, accidentally killed by their own hands.
Desperate to save themselves as the FBI inches dangerously close, they flee Michigan, speeding across state lines and dusty backroads that lead to the Fontaine Motel, an isolated, rundown hideout in the middle of nowhere Oklahoma.
In a few lightning-fast days, their temporary safety leads to much more—self-discovery, love, and deadly secrets that will not only change everything, but threaten the very lives they’re frantic to protect…
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Kelly stops by to join us today. She shares a letter she wrote to a younger version of herself. She gives herself some wonderful advice but doesn’t let herself get bogged down in doing things differently. Such a great outlook. Read and enjoy!
October 5, 1992
My dear Kelly,
You turn fourteen today and your 90210-themed birthday party is a huge success! Although, sadly, Luke Perry doesn’t jump out of a cake to surprise you.
You’re in for a wild ride these next five years! Don’t worry—Johnny Santucci never pressures you for another round of Seven Minutes in Heaven, but there are plenty of parties at the lake and kisses with boys and sleepovers with no sleep and your big mouth will land you in detention more than once. (Some things will never change!) There’s a lot of laughter and fun in your future, but I’m sorry to say you don’t become Charlie’s next angel or move into Melrose Place…
I won’t give too much away, but I’ll give you some advice to help you through the rough stuff:
You’ll learn a lot about life and love and right and wrong. Jill, Matty, Ford, Berger and Fawn are still your best friends, but those friendships will be tested to the extreme when they are involved in a series of horrific events that are scary and dangerous and yes, deadly. You won’t believe any of it is real, but follow your gut. Your instincts are strong and even though you’ll feel alone and lost and selfish, power through. They’ll need your strength to help them. In the end, knowing who you are and asking questions and finding answers and standing up for yourself will, in fact, save them…and you.
Mom has always told you that there’s a fire inside you that will keep you strong throughout your lifetime. You roll your eyes every time she says that because you don’t know what the hell she’s talking about, but listen to her. Believe her. She’s right. There is a fire inside you and you’ll need it then more than any other time in your life.
Keep writing, too. You’ll have an opportunity to turn a lot of painful heartache into a book that will not only change your life, but it will help your friends and so many others who need to read your words.
I’d like to say you won’t have any regrets, but I can’t. You will. Quite a few. But I promise you this: you do everything you can to make amends and you survive. You are a strong, brave girl. Stay that way. Don’t let anyone tell you differently or make you change.
And don’t smoke, no matter how much Berger pressures you.
I’ll see you soon.
I have spent the last 10+ years travelling the world as a dressing room/ wardrobe assistant and backstage coordinator for many famous musicians: Linkin Park, Drake, Li’l Wayne, Bob Dylan, Wilco, Paul Simon, Neil Diamond, Sting and more. It’s an incredibly kick-ass profession! And even after so many years, it still feels like a dream!
But my first love has always been writing. I grew up near Detroit and wrote short stories and many unpublished (and unpolished!) books during my teenage years. I graduated with a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan in 2001 and my first novel, Ann Arbor South ’96, was published in 2006. It was based largely on my turbulent high school experiences in the mid-90s. My second novel, Heart on the Run, was published in 2009.
I took several years off from publishing as I toured, but I never stopped writing on napkins and notebooks and anything I could get my hands on when I had a spark at 3 a.m.! Those snippets and tidbits eventually became my third novel, Snapshots at the Fontaine Motel, published in 2016.
In 2009 I travelled to Europe for the first time and fell in love with it! The countries, the cultures and the people. I also reconnected with a handsome British friend I’d known for years…and fell in love with him too! I moved to England to be with him in 2010 and we were married in 2011. I’ve been a United Kingdom resident ever since and I continue to write, tour and travel.