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D. K. Gaston
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On Father’s Day 1982, a twelve year old was blamed for the multiple stabbing death of his father. The boy had no memory of doing it. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to two years at a mental hospital. Twenty-three years later, now a private detective and a father, his son is the same age he was when he was accused of murder. This prompts Joseph Hooks to discover what really happened that day two decades ago. Did he kill his own father or did something else happen?
As he searches for the truth, he must deal with an uncooperative Detroit police force, rekindle strained relationships with his siblings, protect his loved ones from the threats of a mystery stranger and live with the knowledge his estranged wife is sleeping with another man.
Finding out the truth might prove deadly.
I looked intently at the image trapped inside the rearview mirror and saw a man drained of fortitude. Dark lines charted a timeline beneath his eyes like rings of a tree. I could almost map the long weeks of restlessness to the very minute. Blowing out a long breath, I shifted my gaze to the house. I stayed put within the safe haven of the car, watching the home we once shared. I was indecisive on whether I should remain inside or leave its warmth for the cold response I would most certainly receive at the door. Everything I cherished lay before me. All I had to do was swallow my pride and step out.
On the second floor, light escaped through a bedroom blind that had suddenly been cracked. Someone was at the window peering out. It was still black outside, and the dark tone of the Mustang made it invisible. I waited until the upstairs light had faded before turning the key and starting the car. I was confident my being there had never been detected.
I drove downtown and pulled over beside a broken parking meter near the corner of Washington Boulevard not far from the convention centers or from the meeting I had later. I felt a need to get some air before my engagement and decided a stroll would clear the dust from my head. It wasn’t the first time I’d done this—in the many months since the separation, it had become a place for me to think and to enjoy the stars. Civic Center Drive was peaceful at that hour. There was the occasional shuffling of homeless people that slept in dark places, disrupting the quiet, but they were only minor distractions.
Street lamps lit the direction down the walkway. The path had a view of the Detroit River and beyond that, resided Canada. Darkness cloaked the reflective water but across the river the city lights of Windsor glistened as though it were the Emerald City Dorothy had sought. At dock, was the Detroit Princess, its decks dark and quiet. The old styled riverboat, a new attraction to the city, promised entertainment by way of pleasant cruises, spirited music, fine food and drinks. None of which I was in the mood for. I passed the boat with barely a glance.
Stopping close to Hart Plaza, I stared at the stone set of steps that led up to it and remembered the many events Nina, Jamaal and I shared here. We enjoyed ethnic festivals, music concerts, and fireworks. The showground’s desolate, empty seats and the waterless fountain in its center mirrored the seclusion I felt in my heart. I faced away and leaned against the security barricade dividing the pavement and the river. My gaze turned upward beyond Windsor’s towering structures made of steel and mortar, and escaped to the heavens. The translucent sky had surrendered itself to the stars. It was a perfect vista of the cosmos, and I was left breathless. It was a moment I wished to share with my son. Regret began to permeate inside me. I should have gotten out of the car—should have talked to my wife—should be there to wake my son for school.
There was a great deal of things I should have—could have done my entire life. Bad decisions surrounded me like a pack of hungry wolves, and I was so tired of it. I spent a lot of time that morning reflecting and wondered if what I was about to pursue would be another regret piled on top of the others. But how could I avoid it? The nightmares were getting worse. My thoughts were interrupted when I heard the sounds of the city starting to wake. The stars had begun their slow retreat and first light embarked on its ascent into the heavens. A chilly early morning October breeze that I had not noticed before during my walk reminded me I had somewhere to be.
Author D. K. Gaston develops a tantalising, suspenseful story that draws in the reader immediately and hangs on for the long haul. Well-developed characters and a seemingly impenetrable mystery render Lost Hours a true winner. As the reader cudgels her brain along with detective Joe, we wonder whether the truth will ever be discovered. Lost Hours is a wonderful, curl-up-with story to while away a few hours of the reader's own.” –Annie, Euro-Reviews
“For twenty-three years, Joseph Hooks has lived with the belief that he killed his father, a man who was abusive to him and to his siblings. However, he cannot recall the event, even after spending years in an institution. Now, flashes and visions are erupting from his memory, impelling him to find out if he paid for someone else's crime and leading him into danger. More than one person wants the truth to remain shrouded in the past, and they will stop at nothing to make that happen.
With an urbanized Hitcockian/Christie-ish feel, the story pulls you into its drama. Twists and turns fill its pages. Although it is somewhat of a melancholy tale, if you enjoy mystery, you should find this an intriguing, though not comfortable, read.” Reviewer Amanda Killgore
"Lost Hours is an exciting murder mystery with a twist at the end that you don’t see coming. The beginning starts off a bit slow, but around chapter 6 it picks up and so does the list of suspects that Joseph thinks really committed the murder that he was convicted of. This book is an easy read, but definitely graphic and deals with not only murder but other adult situations.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is over the age of 18 and enjoys a good murder mystery." - Reviewed by Kelly Rieder for The Road to Romance
Book Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
No. of Pages: 302
Paper Weight (lb): 12.6
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