Happy Publication Day to J.E. Rowney, who’s latest psychological thriller, The Woman In The Woods is released today. I have the honour of sharing an extract of the book with you all as part of the publication day festivities.
Seb is an asshole. Katie is an angel.
When Seb’s night-time activity stretches their relationship to its limits, the couple decide to take a last-chance holiday to see if there’s anything left to be fixed.
The cabin looked idyllic, but behind the soft furnishings and fluffy throws there’s a creeping sense of unease.
They thought they were fighting for their relationship – will they end up fighting for their lives?
You can purchase your copy of The Woman In The Woods HERE
The road to the cabin takes us through Culloton. It’s one of those nowhere places. A name on a map. A village you’d only be aware of if you were a local. The village is not on any route to anywhere. The curtains are closed in the tiny windows of the tiny terraced cottages that line the narrow road. The streetlights seem dimmer here than they do back home. I’d like to say that it’s atmospheric, but really it feels plain eerie, like any minute a fog is going to descend and zombies are going to come thundering down the road. The image isn’t helped by the creepy ass sign that hangs outside the only building with a light on.
Something about it catches my attention.
“Watch the road!” Katie says, nudging me unnecessarily as I turn my head to do a double take.
“Weird name for a pub.” I nod my head towards the rear-view mirror.
She shuffles around in her chair to look over her shoulder.
“Not really,” she says, sounding disappointed. Disappointed in me, not disappointed by the pub. Disappointed that I raised her expectations. You’d think she would be used to it.
‘The Woman in the Woods’. Maybe it’s not such a weird name, but something about it gave me a chill. Must have been my melodramatic, zombie-creating brain at work. If you have a dull life and dull thoughts, you have to start making things up.
“Maybe we can come down for drinks one night?” I take a shot at turning things around.
Katie grunts a response that could mean yes or no. I give up.
She’s got her feet up on the dashboard now. I’ve told her, more than once, not to do that, but she doesn’t listen. That’s a lie. She clearly did listen, because she’s taken her shoes off. Instead of her dirty Birkenstocks, she’s resting her bare soles on the dash. She’s got the seat pushed back as far as it will go, but she’s still scrunch-folded, trying to fit into position in the tiny space.
I can’t let myself get too pissed off about it; I’m concentrating on the road, trying to work out where the turning is. My satnav has already given up trying to guide me. The satellite connection is almost non-existent out here.
“Hey,” Katie says. She jabs a finger into my arm like a small blunt dagger. “Hey,” she repeats as she prods.
I take a hand off the wheel and bat at her as if she were a mosquito.
“Quit it.” I glance at her quickly, looking for long enough to catch her expression. That miserable sulky look I’ve come to know and hate. That look is one of the reasons we are here.
“Answer me then,” she buzzes.
I take a deep breath and try to remember what it was that she asked me.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
J.E. Rowney spent several years in the cold Yorkshire hills, but now lives on the south coast of England. She spent ten years working as a midwife before turning in her gloves to become an author.
She is an award winning poet, and also enjoys writing short stories. In May 2020 she was the winner of the Dinesh Allirajah Prize for Short Fiction.
“Charcoal,” her first novel, was published in 2012 to wide critical acclaim, and was a bestselling novel on Amazon within days of release.
She spends lots of time writing in coffee shops, so if see her, say hello.
Ms. Rowney says: “I always dreamed of being a writer, until I realised that I was. Then I started to write.”