Flower Girl Novella sequel
GENRE: women's fiction, women's domestic suspense fiction, women's psychological fiction, domestic abuse
Suzanna Jordan suppressed the memories of Jonathan’s abuse for thirty-six years, but when a tell-all journal surfaces after his death, a legacy of cruelty haunts her from beyond the grave. But will Jonathan’s darkness, bared for all to see, drag Suzanna into despair, or will these revelations free her soul to bear witness to his abuse and finally offer her the closure she so desperately seeks?
“Are you Suzanna Jordan, my father’s previous wife?” he asks.
The slight nasal tone and clipped cadence of his voice are too familiar. It is one thing to know Jonathan is dead—another to have his rebirth materialize before my eyes. Sweat bubbles in the creases of my palms and under my arms. The priest casts his eyes downward and says nothing. The air turns into a block of ice, and the birdsong stops as if the feathered creatures in the trees sensetrouble brewing.
“Yes, I was Jonathan Spencer’s first wife. The death notice didn’t mention a son named Jonathan. Who are you?”
The priest offers me the envelope. “I want to give you this. You deserve to see what’s in here.”
I reach for the ordinary office packet. The words “Trojan Horse” burst into my head as I read the white address label on the package, typed with my name.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Merida Johns writes about the human experience—which often is messy. She shows how ordinary people tackle challenges, live through sorrow and betrayal, and struggle with doubt. But despite this, they gather the strength to act on their aspirations and achieve flourishing lives.
“My insight into the power of fiction came during a conference call in late 2017 with fellow life coaches when I asked, ‘What would it be like to help people achieve a flourishing life through storytelling instead of another self-help book?’
After that phone call, I got started answering that question. Five years later, the result is the publication of my debut novel Blackhorse Road and a second novel, Flower Girl. Both works are women’s fiction, and the driving force of the stories is the protagonist’s journey toward a flourishing life.
Now, I’m thrilled about the recent release of Flawless Witness—a story of a woman who has suppressed the memories of her ex-husband’s abuse for three decades. But when a tell-all journal surfaces after his death, a legacy of cruelty haunts her from beyond the grave.
Before writing fiction, I was a professor, author of health informatics and leadership textbooks, and leadership coach focusing on helping women break the glass ceiling and fulfill their leadership and economic potential. My husband and I reside in the beautiful Midwest countryside. This is where I find the serenity and space for bringing to life the stories of everyday people who face and overcome extraordinary challenges by finding and following their North Star.
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3.5 of 5 stars
“Flawless Witness: Flower Girl Sequel” by Merida Johns is a sequel to the domestic thriller novel, “Flower Girl”. It gives insight to the chain of events that shaped Suzanna Jordan’s life and forces her to face unpalatable truths and explore the strength that has made her into the woman she is now, only if she has the courage to examine the evidence that has come to light.
This psychological fiction novella is both chilling and inspiring. I was a bit challenged by its evocation of distasteful past history, even though I have thankfully never experienced the horrors that the heroine has, and at first, I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue reading. Those who have triggers about domestic abuse should use caution about reading this story, although glimpses of Suzanna’s present circumstances underscore that she has travelled through her dark times and found happiness. Some things were a little clunky for me, but that may be partially because I’ve never been a fan of reading constant flashbacks, and partly because I haven’t read the companion novel that this story is designed to clarify.
I think that this tale would probably serve as a great teaching tool for those who are connected to someone who has experienced domestic abuse. I feel it might be a challenge for those who have already dealt with that heartbreak and betrayal of trust unless it helps provide a catharsis and not a reminder of all they’ve endured. The author does a good job of evoking the horrors sometimes experienced by victims and reminds us that there is not necessarily public justice for some actions but private victories that are the best reward for surviving and overcoming negative experiences.
A copy of this title was provided for review