GHOSTWRITER Birthday #Giveaway and Excerpt, Day 8

All this month, I'll be celebrating the second birthday of my novel, Ghostwriter, with excerpts and prizes.

This year is also the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I. My hero, Seth, was a witness to the terrible events of that war as an ambulance driver. Sara discovers his letters home in a trunk hidden in the attic of the island house she's renting.

Along with the excerpts, I'll be sharing some photographs that inspired me as I was writing the novel.

Today's excerpt:

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Sara went through the kitchen to the small washer and dryer. She’d forgotten to put away the clean clothes, and there was a towel inside. She blotted her face and looked up toward the window in the dining room. She froze at what she saw, and her breath caught in her throat.

Seth Fortner sat outside on one of the dunes, staring toward the sea.

Sara couldn’t move for a moment. She blinked and rubbed her eyes, then blinked again. Her mouth worked soundlessly. Shock made her body shiver and the towel fell from her slack hands.

She’d been somewhat successful in managing to rationalize it all, the missing picture and flash drive, the message on the mirror—even for the smashed trunk she might have been able to come up with a logical reason. Sara could even explain the dreams she’d had as just dreams, a product of her overactive imagination.

But she saw him now and could not explain that away.

He wore his army uniform—unstained this time—and his helmet lay beside him in the sand; he was so transparent, she could see the seagrass waving behind him. Sara moved like a sleepwalker toward the back door. She stepped out onto the porch, into the driving rain. Water ran down over her face in rivulets. Sara stepped off the porch onto the sand and slowly walked toward him.

Seth must have seen her movement out of the corner of his eye because he turned his head toward her and faded from sight.

“Seth! No! Wait!” Sara ran across the dunes toward the spot where he’d been. Her feet tangled around one another; she went sprawling and landed in a graceless heap, but she jumped right back up before her body had even come to a stop. Her bare feet dug into the wet sand. She skidded to a halt where he’d been and spun in a circle, searching for any sign of him. “Seth! Seth, please!”

He was gone. She let out a small whimper. Am I going crazy? She sure must look like she was, standing out here in the rain, the front of her shirt and jeans caked with sand, looking for a ghost.

“Seth, please, if you’re here—please. Please, I need to know . . . I need to know I’m not nuts.” A sob escaped before she could hold it back. Sara sank to her knees and covered her face with her hands.

“Don’t cry.”

She dropped her hands and turned her head toward the sound. He stood on the dune to her left, his expression hesitant. Even though he was transparent, she could see the deep, brilliant sapphire blue of his eyes.

“Seth. My God, it really is you.”

“It’s me.” He stepped toward her.

Sara noticed his hair and uniform appeared perfectly dry, though his hair moved slightly in the breeze. She stood and took a step toward him.

Seth instantly retreated, uncertainty clouding his features. He looked almost frightened.

“I’m sorry,” she said quickly. “I won’t come any closer.”

“You should go inside,” Seth said. “You’ll get sick out here in the rain.”

“It would be worth it. I just can’t believe you’re really here. You’re really real.” Good grief, her one chance in life to speak to a real ghost and she babbled like a moron.

“You should go inside,” Seth repeated.

“I want to talk to you.”


“Because I want to get to know you better, to understand you.”

Seth shook his head and asked again, “Why?”

Because I love you. The thought popped into Sara’s mind and nearly left her lips before she stopped it. Where in the world had that come from?

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About the book:

Newly single, unemployed, and with her savings dwindling to an all-time low, Sara thinks things are finally looking up when she lands a job ghostwriting a popular politician’s biography, and rents the affordable island home of her favorite author, Seth Fortner, who mysteriously disappeared in 1925. Strange things begin to happen as objects break, go missing, and terrifying visions appear, making Sara wonder if Seth ever left, or if she is slowly losing her mind.

She gets no answers from his family who closely guards the secret of his disappearance. Through an old trunk of letters Sara discovers in the attic of her seaside cottage, Sara unravels the mystery and becomes caught up in a tale of greed, lost love, and the horrors of WWI. Will she be the one to break the “Fortner Curse” by helping Seth conquer his demons, and heal both of their hearts in the process?

Available from:

Ghostwriter - Lissa Bryan


Abe Books



  a Rafflecopter giveaway

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