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The Sunset Witness
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The Sunset Witness
by Gayle Hayes

The Sunset Witness takes the form of a detective's memo that incorporates a diary saved on a flash drive belonging to Rachel Douglas, an aspiring author who has gone missing. It explores unique conflicts between family, friends, and lovers. The Sunset Witness is more than suspense and mystery. While it is engrossing entertainment, the novel poses questions about ethics, morals, consequences, conscience, responsibility, and jealousy. It is a quick read at about 46,000 words. There are no less than eleven twists that the reader will not see coming.

Four strangers with four motives converge on Sunset, Oregon and find their lives entangled during two tumultuous weeks as they are propelled to an unexpected conclusion.

Rachel Douglas is eager to close the rift in her friendship with Sarah Duncan and agrees to assume Sarah's lease on a beach house where Rachel will write her first novel. Her chance encounter with an elderly man results in a friendship that provides both with a missing family bond. Frank introduces Rachel to Dennis. Both men confide dangerous secrets to Rachel.

Only after she signs the lease does Rachel learn about the murder in the adjacent parking lot. Then she is intimidated by an intruder and confused by Sarah's strange behavior.

As she struggles with the theme of her novel, Rachel meets Michael Archer who has come to Sunset with secrets of his own. Michael's history is complicated. Rachel's passionate love for him causes her to veer off course and to wish she was once again just a waitress writing her novel by the sea.

Like the dark, roaring, lethal mass of ocean Rachel fears at night, the novel builds on its terrible secrets and crashes in a thunderous wave at the end.
 

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