Ten summer children . . . just eight in number since the drowning of the four-year-old twins . . . were all born in the same year between the vernal and autumnal equinoxes. Grey is one of those summer children. So is the missing girl, her twin flame/best friend Elora Pellerin.
La Cachette, Louisiana, the almost-town proclaiming itself the Psychic Capital of the World, depends on tourists for its livelihood. Along the boardwalk, a sign offering some type of psychic reading fronts every house. Seances. Palm readings. Past-life regressions. Romance Counselor. A contactor of dead pets. But, Grey sullenly muses, none of those claiming to have “psychic abilities” can find Elora.
Three months have passed since the night Elora, playing flashlight tag in the bayou, vanished without a trace. Despite an all-hands effort, the massive search found . . . nothing. No trace. No clue.
What happened to Elora?
The strong sense of place in the Louisiana bayou and the almost-overpowering atmospheric mood pull the reader into the telling of this tale from the outset. Readers can feel the heat, smell the swamp, see Willie Nelson lie sunning his massive gator body in the long grass or silently gliding into the water, hear the cacophony of cicadas.
Emotionally evocative, the unfolding story presents the mystery of the missing Elora framed in the terror of the unknown and the helplessness felt by the summer children. They chafe at their inability to influence events or bring about any change in the situation.
Although repeatedly characterized as the only one of the summer children with no psychic ability, the introduction of Grey’s strange flashes of Elora on the night she disappeared would seem to indicate otherwise. But their meaning remains couched in mystery and Grey has yet to discover how she might use these unexpected revelations to find her friend. For the reader, however, it’s a glimpse into the past, a hint of what happened that night. The night that Elora vanished.
Why does Hart suspect Case? And what about Dempsey Fontenot? Just a childhood boogeyman or a true threat?
So many questions, all couched in the mystery and magic of La Cachette and the Louisiana swamps. Promising to be a can’t-put-it-down book, there’s much for readers to anticipate and much to discover in this engrossing tale of friendship, loss, and mystery.