Wildwood Creek (Moses Lake Series #4)

( 47 )

Overview

With love and loss tangled together, how was she to know where her life would lead?

Allie Kirkland has always heard the call of her father's unfinished destiny. When she's offered a production assistant's job on a docudrama filming in the hills near Moses Lake, Texas, the dream of following in her director-father's footsteps suddenly seems within reach. The reenactment of the legendary frontier settlement of ...
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Wildwood Creek (Moses Lake Series #4)

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Overview

With love and loss tangled together, how was she to know where her life would lead?

Allie Kirkland has always heard the call of her father's unfinished destiny. When she's offered a production assistant's job on a docudrama filming in the hills near Moses Lake, Texas, the dream of following in her director-father's footsteps suddenly seems within reach. The reenactment of the legendary frontier settlement of Wildwood is a first step into the film industry. A summer on set in the wilderness is a small price to pay for a dream.

But in 1861, the real Wildwood held dangerous realities. Town founder Harland Delavan held helpless residents, including young Irish schoolteacher Bonnie Rose, in an iron grip. Mysterious disappearances led to myths and legends still retold in the region's folk songs. Eventually, the entire site was found abandoned.

When filming begins, strange connections surface between Allie and the teacher who disappeared over a century ago, and everyone in Wildwood--including Blake Fulton, Allie's handsome neighbor on the film set--seems to be hiding secrets. Allie doesn't know whom she can trust. If she can't find the answers in time, history may repeat itself...with the most unthinkable results.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
02/15/2014
Allie Kirkland leaps at the opportunity to be a costume assistant in a docudrama about an abandoned Texas frontier settlement. Once at Wildwood, she discovers strange connections between herself and Bonnie Rose, an Irish schoolteacher who disappeared a century ago. If Allie can't solve the mystery, history may repeat itself and she might be the next to go missing. Wingate's tense plot keeps readers wondering what happened to Bonnie Rose until the surprising ending. They will also be able to deduce that faith in God can produce amazing results. VERDICT Well known for The Prayer Box, Christy Award nominee Wingate scores again with a contemporary mystery that incorporates romance and history. It is also sure to appeal to fans of Jennifer Chiaverini's historical fiction (The Spymistress; Mrs. Lincoln's Rival).
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764208249
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/4/2014
  • Series: Moses Lake Series , #4
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 265,988
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Lisa Wingate is a popular inspirational speaker, magazine columnist, and national bestselling author of several books, including Talk of the Town; Larkspur Cove, finalist for the 2012 Christy and Carol Award; and Never Say Never, which won the 2011 Carol Award for Women's Fiction. Lisa and her family live in central Texas. Learn more at www.lisawingate.com.
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Read an Excerpt

Wildwood Creek

A Novel


By Lisa Wingate

Bethany House Publishers

Copyright © 2014 Wingate Media, LLC
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-7642-0824-9


CHAPTER 1

Allie Kirkland February, Present Day


Even as a child, I was fascinated by my father's ability to create things that never were.

I'd forgotten so much about those little-girl years out in LA, my mother playing a bit part in the weekly soap opera, and my father working his magic. When the past is an amalgam of the painful and the sweet, sometimes all the mind can do is let the details fuse and blur. Maybe remold history a little, over time.

But somewhere in the muddle, there was always the indelible feeling of sitting on my knees in my dad's canvas chair, looking through camera lenses and realizing he was willing to keep the whole world waiting while he explained shooting angles, and boom microphones, and lighting to an eight-year-old. Every little girl should have that moment with her dad, and no little girl should be forced to tuck away the crisp details of it. No little girl should be told she's better off ignoring the evidence in the mirror—her father's brown eyes, his penchant for daydreaming at inopportune times, the overwhelming hole where he promised he would be. Always and forever.

But some things just are what they are, no matter who tells you to overlook them. Along with the brown eyes and double-jointed elbows came my father's passion for all things related to film and live stage production ... which made it hard to understand why the hairs on my neck stood up when I first walked into the old Berman Theater, just a few blocks off the University of Texas campus in downtown Austin. I couldn't pin the disquieting feeling on any one thing.

The building was cavernous and shadowy, rife with gold leaf and elaborate cornices, draped in heavy velvet curtains and gilded balconies, the frescos fading like an old woman's makeup slowly disappearing into aging skin. It seemed the sort of place where ghost hunters might come to do a show. The uneasiness it stirred in me was just a vague sense, like the one you get when you walk out the door in the morning, and the barometric pressure has dropped, and without ever having watched the weather you know a storm is coming.

I felt something ... happening, but I didn't know what.

The sensation had been with me all day. My redheaded grandmother, who'd hauled me off to church every time she could wrestle me away from my mother and my stepfather and bring me to Texas for a visit, would've called it the brush of angel wings. To Grandma Rita, everything unexplained was either the brush of angel wings, or the touch of divine appointment.

The Berman Theater didn't feel like either one.

From the center aisle my roommate, Kim, sent a little finger wave my way, then nodded toward the balcony. The casting call line moved forward and Kim shuffled along with it, and I lost sight of her perky head. Goose bumps traveled over my arm and ran up my neck and into the little red curlicues that were probably sticking out of my ponytail by now. Luckily, I wasn't here for the casting call, but for another reason, and movie star hair wasn't necessarily required.

I slid into a theater seat near the wall, feeling conspicuously out of place. If I had to explain to one more person that I was allowed to be here, and that I was waiting exactly where the big, burly security guy had told me to wait, it was entirely possible that I'd cave in and abandon this crazy plan altogether. If there was anyone else here seeking the production assistant's job Kim had told me about, I hadn't crossed paths with him or her. While Kim's line was progressing, mine didn't seem to be forming anytime soon.

Tucking my backpack in beside me, I looked for Kim again, but she'd been permanently absorbed by the crowd. Sooner or later, she'd make it to the front table, where hopefuls were turning in one-sheets, modeling cards, and eight-by-ten glossies that ranged from professionally produced to snapped in the backyard and printed on an inkjet. Tonight, when all the files were compiled, Kim's application and mine would mysteriously be moved to the top of the pile by a friend she had in the production company—at least, that was the plan.

My phone chimed in my pocket, and I scrambled to silence it before reading the text. People in the casting call line glanced my way.

The text was from Kim, wherever she was now. Whoa! You see him up there? IDK, but think he's watching you ...

I looked for her again, then answered, Who? Where? R U close to the front yet?

Kim only responded to part of the question. Typical. Kim's train of thought ran on several tracks at once, jumping back and forth with no operator at the switchboard. Look up in the first balcony! That's him, I think.

I lowered the phone, peered upward, and made out a form. A man. Dark hair. Tall. Thin.

With the long coat cloaking his profile, he looked like Abraham Lincoln at Ford's Theatre. His face was hidden, but he was leaning slightly forward, watching, seemingly with curiosity, the activity on the floor below. For a moment, I had the strangest feeling that his eyes were locked with mine, as if through the darkness I could somehow see them. The uneasiness walked across my skin again, and I turned away, slouching over my phone.

Who? I texted.

The answer came quickly. Singh. Rav Singh.

Kim's friend, who was only a paper-shuZer from a temp agency, had heard that this casting call was related to Rav Singh—that he had signed on to produce the newest Mysterious History docudrama miniseries. It didn't seem likely, considering that Singh was known for box-office films, not television. But the psychological elements of Mysterious History did seem to fit his profile.

Singh's projects were rife with dark psychological stuff that tended to explore the worst side of human nature. He'd come from Mumbai and quickly made a name for himself in the American film industry. Maybe this was his way of capturing the American television market as well ... or maybe the macabre elements of Mysterious History appealed to him. Along with taking a cast of modern-day adventurers back to a historical time period, Mysterious History projects always included a twist. For last season's show, forty people had been sent to live in, and staff, an English manor house. The twist was only revealed after they arrived—Hartshorne Abbey came with a gruesome history and a plethora of legendary ghost stories.

I glanced at the balcony again. The man was gone.

Kim didn't send another message. Apparently, she'd reached the front of the line. At least one of us might be getting a summer job today. As far as I could tell, I'd been completely overlooked. It was almost a relief. If I told my mother and Lloyd I'd found yet another way to prolong my impractical dream and avoid moving back to Phoenix to clerk in Lloyd's law office, they'd probably lock the front gates and hide the security code. They were still livid that I'd used my small inheritance from Grandma Rita to start a grad degree in film production at my father's alma mater, UT. I wanted to do what he had done—work my way up in the movie business. Austin wasn't LA, but it was a growing hub. There were opportunities here.

For Mom and Lloyd, the whole idea was ridiculous. Your grandmother never should've encouraged it. If it weren't for that, you'd be on track right now, like your brothers and sisters. Lloyd delighted in pointing out that my three older stepsiblings, his kids, were tremendously successful people. Doctor, lawyer, engineer. Even the three Lloyd and my mother had together were science fair winners, kiddie chess champions, expert junior gymnasts. And then, there was me. It's time to surrender this fantasy life you've created, Allison, and take up residence in the real world....

But that fantasy life, that universe within a story, was exactly what my father adored. Somehow, deep down inside, I couldn't help clinging to the idea that he would have adored me, starry eyes and all.

A shadow fell nearby and I looked up to find a woman there, her face rigid, exotic in some way, her dark hair slicked back in a bun so tight you could've bounced a quarter off it. A gray sheath dress made her thin frame look even thinner, and impossibly high heels gave her an imposing height. Standing up, I felt like a munchkin on the soundstage of Amazon Women on the Moon.

Her lashes lowered partway and I wondered if she was going to tell me to leave. She seemed unhappy about something. Decidedly.

"This way please." Her voice was strangely robotic, tinged with an accent that sounded slightly Middle Eastern and slightly French. I couldn't place it, and I was usually good with accents. The University of Texas being fairly global, Kim and I loved guessing where the strangers came from. This woman was far too glamorous to be shuttling people through a casting call in a dank theater building.

Which made me wonder if Kim might be right about Rav Singh. This exotic girl looked like she could be an actress out of Bollywood, a part of Singh's famed inner circle. He was known for keeping a tribe of loyal minions who fiercely protected his privacy ... and the content of his ongoing projects.

I hitched up my backpack and fell into step behind her, feeling uncertain, awkward, and plain as we moved into the deepening shadows near an arched side-stage door that led into total darkness. A chill skittered past, and I conjured wild scenarios in which I was grabbed by the burly security guy, bound, gagged, and stuffed into a shipping crate. What would happen from there, I wasn't sure, but if I gave my mind a little time, it would come up with several possibilities. For as long as I could remember, my thoughts had worked that way. In scenes. Wild, unpredictable scenes.

"They told you I'm here to interview for the production assistant's job, right?" I asked.

She skimmed a look over her shoulder, the way people do when they want you to know you're wasting your breath. Perhaps, schlepping applicants around wasn't her normal job, and she resented having to fetch me. Since we weren't going to talk, I focused on the bun ... sort of a flawless blue-black cinnamon roll. A half-dozen hairs had escaped to trail along her smooth olive skin. The only rebellious thing about her.

The darkness fell like a veil and I was walking blind, following the click, click, click of her heels. My flip-flops slapped in response, the thready Bohemian skirt I'd grabbed before leaving the apartment, swishing in a way that was soft, yet audible against the dusty silence. We moved down a ramp, and the murmur of the multitudes faded until there was nothing but the echo of our passing. Not a soul was back here, as far as I could tell. Old wall sconces cast a dim glow along the corridor as we turned a corner, the arched plaster tunnels like catacombs reaching deep into the earth. She stopped at one of the dimly lit doors, opened it, then stepped aside, motioning for me to enter the room.

"In here, please." The request was polite, yet clipped. I glanced at her as I passed, and she looked me up and down in the way one alley cat sizes up another. What her issue could possibly be, I had no idea. Someone like her was under no threat from someone like me.

The room was small, with a desk on one end, a leather chair behind it, and a cheap plastic cafeteria seat in front. One position was intended to denote importance and the other to emphasize subjugation. I had a sudden creepy image of what the production manager might be like, assuming I was here to interview with him or her. I envisioned the guard staff in an out-of-the-way Russian work camp somewhere.

There had been a meeting in this room recently—something having to do with costuming. Assorted fabric swatches lay strewn across the desk and there were sketches on a white-board—line drawings of men and women, the clothing seeming appropriate for an eighteen-hundreds reenactment, at least inasmuch as I knew about eighteen-hundreds reenactments, which honestly was not all that much. I'd taken a few classes in costuming as an undergrad and worked on many university and community theater productions over the years, but that was about it.

A scattering of résumés rested on the desk, along with design portfolios in neat black folders. Setting my backpack in the plastic chair, I sidled closer and peeked at the nearest ones. Clean dossiers printed on linen paper and accompanied by lists of coursework and various accolades. Qualified people had applied for the jobs here. Film and fashion design graduates who'd already racked up a plethora of industry experience.

I didn't have a prayer.

The door opened and I jerked away, then hovered by the cafeteria chair as a woman stepped in. Tall, leggy, smartly dressed in a formfitting white silk shirt and a black skirt with some sort of gold thread in the weave, she glowed. She was gorgeous. Bun hair, this time blond. She looked unfriendly. I was detecting a pattern here.

The door clicked closed behind her, as if it were afraid not to hop to its job, and she whisked past me on her way to the leather chair, a perfumed breeze traveling in her wake. "Sit," she commanded, pointing. I wondered if she had a dog at home.

Slipping into the seat, I set my backpack aside.

"Résumé." Her lashes swept upward, tugging cool sea-gray eyes with them as she adjusted a Bluetooth in her ear.

I hesitated, and she stretched a hand, fingers open impatiently. "You have brought one, I presume."

"Yes." I retrieved it and handed it over, though now it seemed pathetic. I noticed the wrinkles in the paper as she pinched it between her neatly manicured fingernails. Next to the other packets on the desk, mine was Cinderella after the stroke of midnight, realizing she doesn't belong at the ball.

I sat there waiting while the woman perused my credentials.

"You have experience sewing with commercial machines?" she asked without looking up. She was far back on the résumé now, to my high school vacations at Grandma Rita's in Texas.

"Yes. My grandmother owned a dry cleaning and alterations shop. I worked for her in the summers for years. I've worked part time in several fabric shops, and I've also taken fashion classes when I've been able, but of course my primary interest is production."

She blinked, the action completely, perfectly impassive. Her pale eyes were blank, her face android-like. "And you've applied for a position with us because ..." She left the sentence open-ended, as if she were volleying the ball back to me and seeing what I would do with it.

"Film has always been my dream." For some reason, I decided to go for the personal approach, to see if I could melt the ice a bit. It'd always been a problem for me—desperately wanting to persuade people to like me. Being the odd man out in a blended family, you develop strange quirks. "My father was a director. My earliest memories are of being on set with him. He died when I was eight. I've always wanted to follow in his footsteps. Being in Arizona, there weren't many opportunities."

"Yes, I see you've completed your undergrad degree at some ... this is a community college, I presume? I've never heard of it."

"I worked my way through. My parents were only willing to finance college if I studied something they considered practical, preferably law school."

"I see." For an instant, she and I were strangely, unexpectedly connected. I had the distinct feeling she knew all about having someone else pull your strings. Her eyes thawed momentarily, and there was something behind them, but I couldn't tell what.

"I have many qualified applicants for the production assistant's positions. Perhaps your skills would be better suited to one of the lay positions available—something on the cast. No experience in the film industry is required there, this being a reality-based production."

"I'm not exactly the on-stage type. I was the only fifth grader in the school production of A Christmas Carol selected to work behind the scenes, rather than in front. I love the inner mechanisms of a production. I've been involved in every way I could with theater—costuming, set design, whatever was needed. I know it's nothing compared to a full-scale film project like this one, but I'm willing to do whatever it takes to learn. No one will work harder than I will."

I scooted to the front of the chair, and she lifted a hand in a way that indicated she was accustomed to people freezing in place when she told them to. Her eyes darted toward her earpiece, and there was a quick headshake before her attention returned to me.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Wildwood Creek by Lisa Wingate. Copyright © 2014 Wingate Media, LLC. Excerpted by permission of Bethany House Publishers.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 47 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 47 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2014

      I enjoyed this book so so much. It was written as two seperate

      I enjoyed this book so so much. It was written as two seperate books. That made it even better. I thought how is Lisa goimg to bring them together. Of course she did. It was a great journey.You really should take that trip with them.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 2, 2014

    Wildwood Creek**** by Lisa Wingate This story is really two sto

    Wildwood Creek**** by Lisa Wingate

    This story is really two stories, one in the present and one in 1861. They are connected when in the present Allie Kirkland, a film student, has a chance to work as a production assistant filming a docudrama in the hills near Moses Lake, Texas. This is a dream come true for Allie, who would like to follow in her late father's footsteps as a director. This docudrama will be a reenactment of a legendary frontier settlement of Wildwood. Those who agree to spend the summer in the wilderness, either in the reenactment or part of the filming, must also agree to turn in all cell phones and have no contact with the “outside” world during their stay there. This is to give them a feel of how the people who lived there in 1861 really lived which will make the filming more realistic. Things go well for a time, then strange things begin to happen. Strange things very similar to those of 1861. Allie is not sure who she can trust. Should she stay and finish filming or leave before something terrible happens? Will there be a repeat of the events of 1861 with more disappearances?

    In the real 1861 Wildwood there was lot of mystery surrounding the settlement. For one thing, the founder, Harland Delavan was someone who the people of the town feared. He ruled them as if he owned them and once there they never left. Circumstances would bring a young Irish girl, Bonnie Rose and her younger sister, Maggie May to Wildwood. They agreed to live there in hopes to forget their past, a past that was filled with heartache and shame. Bonnie is not sure even God will forgive her past. As young as she was, Bonnie was to be the new schoolteacher. She and her sister had a very small room in back of the school house. Once Bonnie and Maggie May arrived and settled in they begin to learn from long time residence that strange things occur in Wildwood. There were very mysterious disappearances and those who disappeared never came back. Evil seemed to lurk around every corner. Eventually Bonnie and everyone in Wildwood disappeared leaving the town empty.

    This was a very interesting story. It jumps back and forth between the present and 1861 but I was able to follow the story lines. There is much mystery about this town and what happened to those who lived there. There are surprises along the way, suspense and romance.

    ~I won a copy of this book from the publisher for my review~

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 16, 2014

    First book, I've read of hers!  Loved it!  

    First book, I've read of hers!  Loved it!  

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2014

    Great Book!

    Really love Lisa Wingate's writing. This is one is very imaginative. Surprise ending!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2014

    LOVED THIS BOOK!!!!

    Take my word for it! You've got to read this book! Best ending ever!

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  • Posted May 27, 2014

    Unpredictable Throughout! Intent on following in the footste

    Unpredictable Throughout!




    Intent on following in the footsteps of her deceased father and his career as a movie director, Allie Kirkland eagerly accepts a summer position as a production assistant for the reenactment film of an 1861 ghost town known as Wildwood. The location and details pertaining to the reenactment are strictly confidential, and security is tight for the cast and crew. Bizarre events cause Allie concern, but she brushes them aside in order to fulfill the enormous demands of her job.




    A historic parallel story characterizing Bonnie Rose, hired as teacher to the children in Wildwood is told concurrently. We are transported back in time to 1861, and the events that ensue. Shifting from the historic events that surround Bonnie Rose to the modern-day reenactment of the strange and haunting town give credence to questionable developments that occurred so many years ago.




    As the cast and crew begin their training on site Allie is solicited to replace the original actress selected to play the part of Bonnie Rose. Far from her dreams of spending the summer in production, Allie complies and accepts her responsibilities in her new role as actor/teacher. Unexplained and mysterious circumstances occur as the reenactment proceeds. Are there ghosts from the past haunting the locale, or is Allie's imagination playing with her senses?




    The coinciding stories of 1861 Wildwood and present day activities in the recreated town are composed with creativity and depth. Lisa Wingate has researched her subject matter to the point that the reader becomes engrossed in history and drama, injected with mystique, intrigue and suspense. The fourth in the Moses Lake series, this book stands on its own merits, and does not rely on past books in the series. The author has generated a highly imaginative and spellbinding legend interwoven with the elements of a modern-day thriller, blending the two into a very successful suspense-filled narrative. I found it difficult setting this book aside; however, reading into the wee hours of the morning created a few alerts to the creaking sounds in this old house. Pick up a copy of Wildwood Creek, make yourself comfortable and leave a few lights burning if you plan to read this book very far into the night!




    Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Bethany House through The Book Club Network's For Readers Only program in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.

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  • Posted May 14, 2014

    What an amazing read. I am sad to say that this is the first bo

    What an amazing read. I am sad to say that this is the first book I have read by Lisa Wingate, but it will definitely not be my last. From the first glance of the cover, this looks like a typical contemporary love story. However, between the pages of that cover is a story that was really unlike any I had read before. This story alternates between the past with Bonnie Rose in 1861, to present day with Allie Kirkland. Bonnie Rose is an Irish immigrant who has received a teaching position for the town of Wildwood. She is traveling with her young sister, Maggie Rose, in search of a better life for themselves after the horror that they had been through at the hands of being caught by a Native American tribe. Hoping for a new chance at life, however, Wildwood has secrets and there is an evil undercurrent. The town founder is not a good man. In present day, Allie Kirkland is following in her father’s footsteps and has been hired to be a production assistant for the reality show Mysterious History and its new location at Wildwood. There are whispers and secrets about this town and where all the townspeople had disappeared to. In a sudden change of plans, or so it seems, the aloof and interesting director, Rav Singh, has convinced Allie to play the character Bonnie Rose. Not only that, but both Allie and Bonnie share a striking resemblance. Going off the grid and mimicking a life of the pioneer families in this town with no I-phones, computers, or other modern conveniences is going to not only challenge Allie, but the whole cast and crew. Throw in the handsome but mysterious and pretend pioneer neighbor, Blake, and her best friend Kim who wants to break her contract and run away with her brand new boyfriend, and you have Allie on her toes. While in the past Bonnie Rose is facing strange disappearances and a town on edge she is trying to figure out how she can save herself and her sister. In the present, the towns counterparts are also becoming edgy, throw in some mysterious happenings, and you might just have history repeating itself. This was a book that had just about everything: from history, contemporary, romance, mystery, and suspense. It was hard to put down. I received this book from The Book Club Network, Inc. and the opinions are my own.

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  • Posted May 2, 2014

    Wildwood Creek is another amazing success of Lisa Wingate. This

    Wildwood Creek is another amazing success of Lisa Wingate. This is part of the Moses Lake series. It is quite a mystery, adventure, and a romance. The story revolves around two girls in two different centuries heading to the same destination. One girl is to be in a film about the girl from the past. It is intriguing to see how well Lisa does this. The characters are well written, and settings very descriptive. I look forward to cotinuing to read this authors works.I received this book from the Book Network on exchange for my honest opinion. 

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  • Posted May 1, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    This is a mystery and a career enhancement.  Families have issue

    This is a mystery and a career enhancement.  Families have issues and sometimes it hurts and we keep that hurt inside of us.  Our past eats away at our future. The solution is often difficult.  The grandmother/aunt is full of sayings that often helps the character grow in strength and wisdom. Each person plays an intricate roll in the story. The town plays a large part in 1861 and the present. The two intertwine until it appears that both conjoin resulting in this truly frightening venture. 

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  • Posted April 13, 2014

    Wildwood Creek is another stunning success by Lisa Wingate. Boo

    Wildwood Creek is another stunning success by Lisa Wingate. Book Three in the Moses Lake Series does not disappoint. In a great tale with suspenseful twists and turns, Ms. Wingate weaves the story of two young women whose lives could not be more opposite. However, both must make decisions to move their lives into the future without the support or encouragement they need.

    Allie, is breaking into the entertainment industry with only the support of her best friend. Allie’s family finds her choices ridiculous and a waste of her life. But she clings to the memory of her father’s work in production and she moves toward her dream. Nothing is easy though and Allie is paired with a strange, domineering boss who is unwilling to cut her any breaks. Through a turn of events Allie finds herself moving from an assistant in production to an actress on the set of the reality show being filmed about Wildwood Creek.

    Saying goodbye to the conveniences of everyday life, Allie jumps into the pioneer life and slowly becomes connected to her character Bonnie Rose. Allie longs to understand how this young teacher could be blamed for the disappearance of an entire city and wants to set the record straight.

    Bonnie Rose, a young woman in 1861 who has faced horrors and carries scars too deep for discussion, tries to make a new life for herself and her little sister, Maggie May. The decision means travel over treacherous waters and land. Along the way, Bonnie strains to keep her past a secret to allow a new beginning for herself and a future for Maggie May.
    The future is not easily acquired when the place for a fresh start is filled with evil and secrets.

    And so the tale of Wildwood Creek develops into suspenseful mystery with intriguing characters and a nail-biting plot. A fantastic read!

    I received this book from the Book Club Network in exchange for my honest opinion.

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  • Posted April 13, 2014

    Lisa Wingate is a wonderful author who puts a lot of thought, ti

    Lisa Wingate is a wonderful author who puts a lot of thought, time and research into her books, and this one was no exception.  As a history buff, I particularly liked how this book went back and forth between 1861 and present day.  Whole chapters were set in one time period or another, but they did not alternate - sometimes you may have several chapters in one setting or the other.  With reality TV such a big part of what I watch, this had a great twist for me as the main character had a part in a reality show.  Even though it didn't go into great detail in regards to the filming, there was enough to really give you a taste of what it would be like to be in the cast.  There was a little romance thrown in, an historical mystery, plus the give and take of relationships, be it roommates, peers, or boss/subordinate.  An all-around great book set in Texas (one of my favorite places to visit!), that grips you from page one until the end.  You do not want to miss this opportunity to read another awesome literary work from Lisa Wingate - buy it today!

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  • Posted April 8, 2014

    Wildwood Creek By: Lisa Wingate Takes a really good writer to b

    Wildwood Creek
    By: Lisa Wingate

    Takes a really good writer to be able to write to time eras in one book and keep the story straight. story begins in 1861 and then moves to present day time. Story of two sisters who were taken by Indians and mistreated. The abuse they was given would be hard to come out of without scars not only physical but mentally. Both Allie and Maggie feel unlovable. Will they ever be able to feel love again? Allie and Bonnie Rose lived in two different times in history but yet had a lot in common. Both had a bad and very difficult pass. Will Allie suffer the same fate as Bonnie Rose or will she choose wisely? This book is more then just a historical but there is romance also. Full of adventure, mystery and suspense. This book would suit many readers. Wonderful characters.
    Look forward to the next one.

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  • Posted April 3, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Wildwood Creek is a beautiful blend of historical and contempora

    Wildwood Creek is a beautiful blend of historical and contemporary fiction.

    If you’ve read any of Lisa Wingate’s books, then you already know this read will be fabulous. For those of you who aren’t acquainted with Moses Lake, or Ms. Wingate’s well-crafted characters…well, you’re in for a treat.
     
    The contemporary slices of this book are told from Allie Kirkland’s point of view. She is a likeable, compelling character and her modern family dilemmas are easy to relate to. Her strengths and flaws make her a well-rounded character. She communicates with others in such a believable way that I feel I know her. I empathized with her struggles and rooted for her to overcome them.

    Though times were very different in the mid 1800s, I’m able to place myself there, empathizing with Bonnie Rose, and relating to her fears and triumphs. Bonnie Rose endured horrid things in the past, making her vulnerable, yet determined. She’s a strong, memorable character and totally stole my heart. 

    I adore how these two characters and their stories are weaved together. One life is intertwined with another in ways never imagined, providing the reader with a stunning tapestry of the mystery, romance, and adventure of life and love.

    In short—I loved this book. Lisa Wingate is a gifted writer, creating potent, memorable, beloved characters that I cherish. I miss them when I end each book.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a Review Copy. I was not required to write a positive review. The options I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

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  • Posted April 2, 2014

    Wildwood Creek by Lisa Wingate is the story of two women who hav

    Wildwood Creek by Lisa Wingate is the story of two women who have connections to Wildwood, only one lived more than a hundred years later than the other. Allie Kirkland wants to follow her father into the production part of the film industry. It is her dream. This dream is well within reach when she kinds a job for a film re-enacting the legendary story of Wildwood.
    Bonnie Rose, in 1861, is living in Wildwood. She has signed up to be the teacher there so she can care for her and her sister. She soon realizes that the residents are not safe. Strange things occur leading to her and her sister among others fleeing and abandoning Wildwood.
    I wasn't sure about this read when I began; I found it a bit difficult to follow. However, it didn't take long at all to catch on and really get caught up in the lives of these two women. They are both wonderful like-able characters, and it's so interesting to read the differences in the time periods. This book was well written with no slow or dragging parts. I could not put this down, and I ended up staying up way past my bedtime to finish it. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. As it was my first novel to read by Lisa Wingate, I am very much looking forward to reading more of her writings. I'd give this four and a half stars if it were possible. I highly recommend this read. Two great stories in one well woven novel! This book was given to me through The Book Club Network for my honest opinion which I have given.

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  • Posted March 31, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Allie's late father was a movie director. Allie's goal is to fo

    Allie's late father was a movie director. Allie's goal is to follow in his footsteps in some capacity. So when her roommate convinces her to get a job working on set of a reality show, she agrees. The reality show will be based on the true story of an entire town that vanished without a trace. The contestants will be playing the part of the people who disappeared so long ago. But strange noises and mysterious circumstances are keeping Allie on edge. She arrives at the remote set location with all of her plans upset. She has now become one of the contestants instead of a production assistant.

    The story is told in two parts. The modern day tale is about Allie as she struggles with the changes, learns how to live without modern conveniences, and tries to figure out the olden-day mystery. The second part of the story is about Bonnie Rose, one of the women who disappeared from the town.

    I'm unsure how to articulate how I feel about the plot or characters. The entire time I was reading I kept thinking how strange the story felt to me. The part about Bonnie Rose was interesting, but I kept wishing for more information. The modern day story was a bit more confusing and lacked character development for me. The relationships between the characters felt at times forced and rushed. The story was good, but lacked quite a bit to make it great. I didn't realize until after I'd finished the book that this book is part of a series. Perhaps if I'd read the other books I might have enjoyed it more.

    I received this book free of charge from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.

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  • Posted March 23, 2014

    Allie was looking forward to spending the summer as a production

    Allie was looking forward to spending the summer as a production assistant for a docudrama being filmed near her university. At least until the job started, and she began to see what working in her late father’s industry was really like for the new gal on the set. Her best friend and roommate was part of the cast, although not in role she had aspired to. This docudrama was filmed on location; the historical setting of Wildwood in Texas was prepared to look as the original settlement did.
    The people of the settlement disappeared without a trace in the early years of the Civil War. Yet the cast and crew would be living there for the time of the filming – once they arrived, they could not leave – and they had to live only within the accommodations of 1861 Texas with the exception of the hidden cameras that filmed the action and daily lives of the cast.
    The idea was fascinating to me! I don’t know that I would enjoy a summer spent on this type of location, as there are a few modern conveniences that I enjoy (such as air conditioning and my ‘puter), but the author’s research into the period, the mystery of the past and creepy occurrences of the present, and her use of relationship building and friendships forged through a common activity led me to eagerly race through this story.
    This reader loved the book! I would certainly like to read more of the novels in this series, as well as others by this author. The spiritual theme throughout the book, skillfully wrapped in mystery and romance, make this a must-read! Lisa Wingate writes a thoroughly believable tale with characters that gently whisper that the reader is not the only one to have felt the way they felt, make the blunders they made, or struggled to go forward in their career rather than go with the flow of family expectations.
    I highly recommend this novel to those who enjoy suspense with a touch of romance and compelling historical mystery, and think it appropriate for teens as well as adults to enjoy.
    I received a copy of this book through the “For Readers Only” group at The Book Club Network, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2014

    Wildwood Creek is a hauntingly beautiful tale with two interwove

    Wildwood Creek is a hauntingly beautiful tale with two interwoven stories set a century apart.
     I was immediately drawn in by the flowing romance, excitement, history and mystery.
    The story takes unexpected twists and turns.
     The tale has wonderfully developed characters who I continue to think about long after I finished the book.

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  • Posted March 18, 2014

    I have to say this is the best Lisa Wingate book I¿ve read! I en

    I have to say this is the best Lisa Wingate book I’ve read! I enjoyed Firefly Island, found The Prayer Box interesting and insightful, but Wildwood Creek gave me all the things I enjoy in a book, little romance, some history, and MYSTERY!
    The author gives us the story from the perspective of Allie Kirkland in modern day as well as Bonnie Rose who first traveled to Wildwood over a century before. Allie was a great character as she was trying to come into her own, dealing with family expectations as she follows her dream. Bonnie’s story was one filled with a great deal of tragedy.
    This story moved at a great pace. There was a lot of setup in the story before they actually start the reenactment at Moses Lake, but the author did a great job of keeping it engaging; I never felt like the story bogged down. Once the cast and crew moved to Wildwood things kick into high gear and stay that way until the end. And I didn’t see the ending coming.
    Disclaimer: I did receive this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest option.

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  • Posted March 13, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    This is the first in a series of books that I¿m going to be revi

    This is the first in a series of books that I’m going to be reviewing to try to stretch my reading habits from
     mainly suspense, intrigue novels to some contemporary novels.  I’ve read several in the past that, while
    maybe not a typical “guy’s book”, are books that should be read by guys none the less.

    Allie is finally being offered a job that will allow her to do what she’s always wanted and follow her father
     into the film making business.  When she agrees to do the job, she heads out to the hills near Moses
     Lake.  The movie is a reenactment, docudrama, of the town of Wildwood and the mysteries surrounding
     the disappearance of some of the residents of this town.  As the film unfolds, Allie begins to dig into the
     actual people from the town to see how much of the “film” is true and how much is fiction.  With the
     actors and crew living the part during filming, things for Allie take a dangerous turn.  What happened to
     those that disappeared from the town? Does Allie ever find any answers to her questions? Is what is
     happening now related to what happened back then?  Head down to your local box office if you want to
    watch the movie, but if you want to find the answers to these questions you will need to BUY THE BOOK!!

    So maybe this book wasn’t as big of a stretch to my reading habits as I had thought.  This books would
    definitely be labeled as a “mystery” book to me as there are clues, red herrings and shady characters just
     like in any good mystery book.  I will admit, though, the I am not a fan of this writing style.  For this book,
     the author has basically chosen to tell you two stories at once.  The story of Allie who is helping to make
     the film and then the story of Bonnie Rose, the young lady from the real town.  The author uses
     alternating chapters to give you their coinciding stories.  I tend to get confused at times when I have to
     switch my brain back and forth, especially between two different time periods.  I didn’t see a lot of
    character development as the story progressed and I’m thinking it’s because there was so much of the
     back story that had to be told. That doesn’t mean that I didn’t like the characters, I just felt like I could
     have got to know them more. 

    Is this a "guy's book"?  There are some elements of this book that would appeal to men.  There is a lot
     of historical information shared when the book is through the eyes of Bonnie Rose, it almost makes you
     feel like you’ve switched to the History Channel on a lazy Sunday afternoon.  And what man wouldn't
     look forward to that.

    I received this book from the Book Fun Network in exchange for my honest opinion.

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  • Posted March 9, 2014

     I would like you to use extreme caution when starting this book

     I would like you to use extreme caution when starting this book. If you have anything going on in your life that requires your presence, don’t start it. Once you do, you won’t be able to put it down. Such an amazing book! I started this book on a Saturday afternoon, and canceled my plans to finish it that night. I highly recommend it! I had gotten this book free from Bethany House publishing to review and I cannot wait to read more by Lisa Wingate.

    This book has a little bit of everything; history, mystery, romance, technology, and some really great advice. It jumps seamlessly back and forth between 1861 and present day. As the novel progresses the stories start to intertwine. Allie often finds herself wondering about the people whose shoes she is trying to fill and to piece together what happened in the past. 

    Both women deal with major tragedies in their past that they have allowed to overshadow their future. As they learn how to put the past in its place it encouraged me to do the same. This was my favorite excerpt from the book: “I’d never believed that God had anything better in store for me than a life where you do your best to get by, to stumble along broken and wounded, never quite daring to hope for the really good things. But maybe I’d been wrong all this time. Maybe a tragedy is exactly that- a singular thing, a shadow we travel through on the way to a different destination. Maybe the bigger tragedy is the one we undergo by choice. The decision to never walk forth from the shadow and see what lies beyond it.” 

    While this is a purely fictional piece of work, really good fiction inspires you. It challenges you to look at your life and see how you can improve. Maybe you’re feeling like these women did, that you just have to do your best to get by. God doesn’t want us walking wounded and broken. There is healing from past hurts and tragedies. This book really encouraged me to “walk forth from the shadow and see what lies beyond it.” 

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