3 Dec 2013

Let Me Go by L.L Akers

Let Me Go by L.L. Akers
(Let Me Go #1)
Publication date: July 5th 2013
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult

A scarlet dragonfly tattoo—meant to be a beautiful, family mark of freedom, but instead becomes a prophetic brand for those who wear it, to forever be suffering. Wounded and broken, they find themselves flittering back into the cycle of abuse that relentlessly clings to their family, a reality they can never seem to escape.
One mother and her daughters, bound by blood—torn apart by abuse. They begin their lives intertwined but are forced to fight for their survivals separately, struggling to hide their fear and undeserved shame from each other and the world. One of these women finds herself trapped—alone—and she battles to survive the terrifying darkness. With long hours of nothing to do but wait in fear, she grapples through her obscure dreams and memories of the past, sorting which memory belongs to whom: physically harmed, mentally damaged, raped, sexually abused, an unwanted pregnancy… and even the vivid memory of a dangerous dance with death in a last attempt to escape the shambles and horrors of a seemingly unchangeable situation.
Twin sisters, Gabriella and Olivia, dive blindly—and much too early—into adulthood. They are soon followed by their younger sister, Emma, all running from a not-so-idyllic past; chasing the happiness they believe they will find, by abandoning their childhoods to be “grown-up” and start their own lives.
Deeply evocative, Let Me Go is a coming-of-age story: the struggles of one mother and her daughters trying to survive life—marred by abuse and misplaced blame—and their need to reach peace, forgiveness, and reconciliation.

Let Me Go
Said The Girl in the Box

SHE startles awake with a gasp, her heart beating so hard she can hear it pounding against her chest.
It’s so dark. Too dark. There must have been a power outage. Even in the middle of the night, she can usually see the dim light from her alarm clock, but this dark is deeper than any she’s ever known. She can’t see a thing.
She touches her eyes, just to be sure they’re open; they are. She tries to get up to look for a flashlight and cannot; she is met with resistance. She lies there for a second, feeling the panic build.
What is that smell? A mixture of bleach, plastic, and… and rubber? Now she remembers… It isn’t a nightmare. She’s not at home in her bed. She’s freezing and her body aches.
She takes several deep breaths and tries to stay calm. She reaches up and gently runs the knuckle of her index finger around her prison. She must have fallen into something. Maybe through a floor into a crawlspace? But what crawlspace… what house? She can’t remember getting here. She can’t remember her last memory before “here.”
Her head feels heavy, like she’s foggy and half-asleep. But she feels like she’s awake and this really is happening. Her throat is parched and sore, along with her throbbing, bleeding fingertips and at least a few broken nails that she can feel, but not see, to give her enough discomfort to realize she is definitely not dreaming. She’s in a confined space—trapped—that much she can tell just by trying to raise her arm straight up, because she cannot. When she tries, it’s as if she hits a roof or a lid—something—before she can extend her arm all the way. She can feel her own hot breath blowing back against her face, as if there’s nowhere for it to go but bounce back at her. Is she in a crawlspace? Or… could it be a coffin—or a box?! She wonders, feeling the panic build again.
Screaming, she feels along the hard surface, then resorts to clawing before she stops, gasping at a painful stab under her fingernail. She tries to ignore the throbbing of her finger to concentrate on more exploring. There has to be a way out.
To the right is a wall. She rolls to her back and reaches out, feeling equal space to the left. Her mind is fuzzy, but she’s starting to remember awakening once before to discover herself trapped in this darkness and wildly trying to find her way out, not succeeding. She’d been met with dead-ends every which way she turned, moving in circles like a sand crab trying to find its way back into its dark hole—or out of it.
For now, she will stay right here and try to stay quiet. She doesn’t know where she is, but she at least knows she’s alone in this space, she thinks. She reaches up behind her and finds a corner of something. Carefully, she follows the shape with her knuckle, running her fingers around it. It’s rectangular in shape and feels like plastic over something soft. She can compress it with her hand, making a crinkle sound. She reaches back down and feels to the left; the wall feels cold. To the right… cold again. She keeps feeling around, her fingers not giving up. She has to find something to drink.
Her mouth is so dry she can barely make enough spit to swallow; her tongue feels like a slug sprinkled with salt, slowly shriveling away. She laughs at this and is startled by her own voice. She feels she must be on the edge of hysteria to be laughing while completely filled with terror. “Search, little slug!” she encourages, happy to finally hear her thoughts out loud, as her tongue wiggles from side to side, searching for any hidden moisture from around her teeth, but not succeeding.
Her arms are tired from their exploring. She rests a moment, turning to roll onto her side again. She tilts her head back as far as it will go, looking for any sliver of light. Shit! She is so thirsty she wants to cry, but she has to stay calm.
I HAVE to stay calm, get some water, and make sense of this bullshit, she thinks.
She feels herself sliding toward hysteria again. “I need some water!” she yells. “Hey! Anybody out there? I need some water, please!” But it comes out as a hoarse whisper—she used up her tiny bit of voice encouraging her slug. No one can hear her now; she can barely hear herself.
“Help!” She tries again to work past the whisper. All she hears is the silence springing back off the darkness. The stillness calms her again. She’ll just have to wait. Surely someone will come for her. She won’t let her mind go to the other option.
She wonders how long she can hold her bladder—or the other. Will someone find her before then or will she have to lie in her own filth? Her fingers reach down to see if she’s already wet herself. She doesn’t find her pants, instead landing on something smooth and slick.
Smells like a baby in here too, she thinks. What the—
The realization slaps her in the face like an open fist. It is a diaper.
In a rare moment of thinking straight, she puts it together before she can forget the pieces again: she’s stuck in a small, dark space, seemingly with no way out.
She thinks it’s a box.
She’s wearing a diaper, for God’s sake.
Whatever she’s lying on feels like it is covered in a plastic mat, like a kinder-mat that the kids use for napping but longer. She has no memory of getting here. She feels disoriented and drugged and can barely stay awake.
So. This is no accident. She hasn’t fallen into something. She feels fear climbing again as she realizes the truth.
Someone planned this.
Someone put her here.
Unless this is just a random act—unlikely—there’s only one person in her life who would do something like this to her.
She should have known he’d never let her go.

L.L. Akers is originally from the Midwest where she grew up climbing trees, haystacks, and haylofts—escaping into other worlds with a good book. She enjoyed playing cow-pattie hopscotch and outrun-the-bull with her siblings.
She now lives in the South, the silly wife of a serious man, and mother of: one very gifted and fetching male-tween, a chubby beagle that looks astonishingly like a mini-cow, a deranged terrier as well as five Koi fish, a herd of tiny but boastful lizards, and dozens of obnoxiously loud serenading frogs.
After a career in human resources, she now pursues life as a recluse writer; hanging out at home in her PJ’s with her iPad, Burt’s Bees lip balm and her posse of creatures. Regardless of her self-isolation, she can still be lured outside for brief moments by the scent of freshly mowed grass and a bowl full of cherries.
Let Me Go is her first novel, and book 1 of the Let Me Go Series – each book is a stand-alone, with no cliffhangers.


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