Title: Lost in the Echo
Author: Jack L Pyke
Publisher: Fantastic Fiction Publishing
Release Date: August 23rd, 2016
Genre(s): Contemporary, Suspense, Romance
Page Count: 99 pages
Reviewed by: Lily G Blunt
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Three days. Three questions. Three answers.
Kidnapped, blindfolded, and bound to a bed, running away isn’t an option any more for Will Chambers. Despite being a linguistic tutor and having every conversational tool at his disposal, all Will wanted to do was fade into the background, become lost in the echo of wild heath and harbour. But now someone wants to put his body and mind on full display, force Will to find his voice—answer three questions, over three days. All Will has to do is provide three… simple… answers.
This is an extended edition of a short story first published for the Goodreads Love Has No Boundaries “Dear-Author” Challenge. I haven’t read the original version, so I can’t compare the two or say what has been added or improved on.
I particularly liked the wonderful writing style and use of language. Right from the start the author sets the tone well. I was enthralled by the sentence structure and use of imagery to reveal the different settings. Jack creates a suspenseful atmosphere, especially in the first half. The story itself is mysterious and gripping, and held my attention to the end.
This is a complex tale with many layers that needs your full attention, otherwise you may miss clues and references to the various characters and their relevance to the plot. There’s no real backstory at the start and information on the characters drips through a few drops at a time. I was a little bewildered at first and not sure who was being referred to. I think that was the intention of the author. The story gradually unfolds with flashbacks to explain the current situation.
The story has a dark element, but it wasn’t quite as dark as I’d thought it would be. Yes, there’s kidnapping, physical restraints, and psychological torture to some degree. Above all, it’s an emotional tale, full of pain and grief. It is also about love and love for more than one person.
We experience what Will is feeling. We’re lost with him, confused as to what’s going on. His senses have been dulled, and we experience what he’s going through. Will is lost in the echoes of the past and his grief is palpable.
I enjoyed the story, but read it again to sort out the characters, who did what and their motives, plus to order the different flashbacks. It’s a multi-layered story with lots going on that I didn’t fully understand at first. The second reading clarified some of my confusion. Even so, I struggled with what had exactly led to the kidnapping and am still a little muddled about the motives and why things happened as they did, both in the current as well as the backstory.
I don’t want to give away any spoilers in this review. Give it a try. I recommend it.
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“Hm.” Will brushed the flat of his stomach, just by accident at first as he shifted the sheet to get comfortable, but then, as his body reacted, a run of happy goosebumps chased a second, more deliberate touch.
One arm covering his eyes, almost hiding him from loving the touch he played on his body, Will dug the flat of his feet a little harder into the mattress. The shy covering of sheet only added to the slow tease of the back of his hand brushing the length and thickness between his thighs. So easy… so easy just to slip between material and skin, maybe just to feather-play those fingers between navel and the vulnerability of everything hidden beneath the thin safety of the covers, to stroke, to please.
Will arched his back slightly, letting a soft murmur escape his lips. How long had it been? How long since he’d known the feel of his body pressed into the mattress by someone else. Hearing a whisper in his ear, keep the touch light… a game of mutual consent, or shift it into something darker, where giving up control tipped the scales, and a harder tease with cuffs slipped around his wrists as that heated body above him shifted a cock deeper, dug that rough drag of nails down his thigh— harder.
Control. He didn’t mind games of surrender, if only in the bedroom. He didn’t mind admitting how much he missed being held and fucked hard enough so that—
Giving a cry, he twisted to his side; head now buried in his pillow, legs curled up in almost a defensive position as he gripped at the sheet, trying to stop the heat he could feel burning in his cock.
Wrong. Today of all days, it was wrong.