Tuesday, 28 March 2017

#SneakPeek: The Hard Truth About Sunshine by Sawyer Bennett

The neighborhood is perfect. Square lots that back up to one another, little to no fencing, and pretty much set in a grid pattern that will make navigation easy. I left my Suburban parked five blocks away, and we’ll stay a good two blocks away from it in our pursuits tonight. The sidewalks are lined with large trees that help to filter out the streetlights, and the only real problem with exposure is from porch lights. Luckily for us, we won’t be getting that close to the houses.
“Okay, there’s an etiquette to egging,” I tell the group as we squat down behind a bush at the edge of our first target’s yard. I can’t squat down as far as the others because of my prosthesis, but I can get low enough that I’m part of the tight circle we’ve formed. Jillian on my left, Barb to my right, and Connor opposite of me. He looks at me with earnest dedication, as if I’m teaching him how to perform open-heart surgery.
“First,” I continue. “No houses that are completely dark. There’s no risk in that, which means there’s no fun in that. Try to aim for windows or storm doors, particularly ones where the occupants might be standing near. It helps to scare the shit out of them.”
Connor nods in understanding, committing this rule to memory. Barb rolls her eyes and Jillian tries to look censuring, but I can see the amusement in the tilt of her lips.
“Second… we all throw together on my count. Once your egg makes contact with the structure, we run to our next designated point.”
“Why do you get to count?” Jillian asks.
“Be quiet,” I tell her with a stern look. “You’re not participating so you have no say.”
She giggles in response and Christ… I like that sound. My scar pinches, which means I’m smiling, and I give into it.
Turning back to Connor, I make sure he understands the most important rule. “Finally, don’t panic if you’re pursued. Ditch the rest of the eggs if you can without being seen. If you’re caught, deny everything.”
Connor swallows hard but nods again, his eyes starting to sparkle with excitement.
“Are we ready?” I ask the group.
“Yes,” Connor and Barb say together, palming the egg they’d pulled from their respective cartons. We’re all traveling light right now… nothing but a carton in one hand and a single egg in the other. Jillian’s holding onto the Suburban’s keys, but I noted she put on tennis shoes tonight in case we have to run. I guess she’s running with us, even though she’s not participating.
“Okay, our first target is this house,” I say as I nod over my left shoulder to the small brick house on the other side of the bush. I do a quick scan of the street, see no one around and no cars coming, and then complete my instructions. “There’s a woman at the window washing dishes. Try to aim there.”
Connor, Barb, and I all stand from our squatting positions and cock our arms back. Jillian gives a long-suffering sigh, but stands as well.
“And on three… two… one,” I murmur to my squad. “Go!”
The three of us throw the eggs, mine and Connor’s hitting the kitchen window. Barb’s hit just to the right of it on the brick, but the splatting egg was so startling the woman washing dishes shrieks in fear and ducks down low out of sight, I’m sure thinking she was being shot at or something.
Snickering, I turn and take off running down the darkened sidewalk. I’d worn my running blade tonight, which is a special carbon-fiber reinforced polymer prosthetic that helps with spring and balance. I’d received this through the Veteran’s Administration along with my C-leg prosthetic, but I hardly ever use it. Haven’t been that into running since my injury.
But tonight, as I find I’m able to move fairly quickly for a dude with only one leg, I feel a surge of adrenaline and perhaps personal challenge rise within me. Why am I not running again? I was good at it when I was in the Marine Corps, sometimes running five to eight miles, several times a week.
Connor, Barb, and Jillian all run behind me, any of the three probably able to overtake me with nominal effort, but they don’t. Instead, they follow me down one block, and south down another two where I scout out another house. By the time the woman washing dishes figures out what hit her house, she won’t be able to find us.


More About The Hard Truth Sunshine

New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett has written her most gripping and poignant tale yet. Provocatively heart-breaking, audaciously irreverent and romantically fulfilling, The Hard Truth About Sunshine exposes just how very thin the line is between a full life and an empty existence.

Despite having narrowly escaped death's clutches, Christopher Barlow is grateful for nothing. His capacity to love has been crushed. He hates everyone and everything, completely unable to see past the gray stain of misery that coats his perception of the world. It's only after he involuntarily joins a band of depressed misfits who are struggling to overcome their own problems, does Christopher start to re-evaluate his lot in life.

What could they possibly learn from one another? How could they possibly help each other to heal? And the question that Christopher asks himself over and over again... can he learn to love again?

He's about to find out as he embarks upon a cross country trip with a beautiful woman who is going blind, a boy with terminal cancer, and an abuse victim who can't decide whether she wants to live or die.

Four people with nothing in common but their destination. They will encounter adventure, thrills, loss and love. And within their travels they will learn the greatest lesson of all.

The hard truth about sunshine...

Warning: This book deals with some tough issues including suicide and sexual abuse.

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Since the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions.

A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.

Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.