Title: Out of Splinters and Ashes
Author: Colleen L Donnelly
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Cate is a runner. She prefers to help her fiancé run his New York senate race, but she finds herself running instead to fix what’s broken between her grandparents before he finds out—her grandmother has moved out of the family home, and her grandfather is accused of a pre-WWII relationship with a woman in Germany.
Dietrich is a German journalist with a spotless reputation. He prefers facts, but he finds himself lost in a world of fiction instead to prove his novelist grandmother couldn’t possibly have been the lover of a US runner in Berlin’s 1936 Olympics—especially when that runner’s granddaughter is Cate, a stubborn obstacle he should but can’t ignore.
Cate runs hard to cover up what Dietrich uncovers, until he shows her how it could have been—and how it could be again—that one can indeed love an enemy.
Grandma was impossible to stop. She charged around me, into the room, flipping on a light as she did. “You can go now,” she barked at the soldier still holding the door. “This won’t take long.”
He nodded at Grandpa, then shut us in, us and the mirror.
I saw Amabile’s story all over again as Grandpa spotted the mirror, the deep-down flicker I’d noticed before, but brighter now. Grandma and I disappeared as time took him backwards, his face transforming from old and haggard to young and alive—then to terrified, and lastly to nothing, except guilt. Grandma didn’t raise the mirror as I expected her to, and shake it in his face. She let it hang in front of her, between them, the charred frame and lone lily all he could see.
I stared at the trembling finger that stretched and touched the blackened wood, scars this man probably deserved exposed at the cuff of his sleeve.
“I believe this is yours.” Grandma’s voice was low.
I’d never seen them this close together before, never seen them face each other. But I’d seen the mirror between them forever without knowing it was there.
Colleen L Donnelly writes to unravel moral dilemmas of the heart. A US Midwesterner, she enjoys simple living while seeking out the complicated to bring to a story. A scientist by profession, she has enjoyed escaping to the less black and white of fictional literature, an avid reader and now a devoted writer.
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