September 25, 2019

Rachel's Random Resources ~ Simon Says by Jo Wesley

Author : Jo Wesley
Published Date : July 11, 2019
Publisher : Self-Published
Genre : Fiction / Thriller

Goodreads / Amazon

About The Book

Her life may not be perfect but she’s happy. Until she makes a terrible decision - and learns the hard way that home is not a place of refuge.

Not while Simon lurks in every shadow.

He groomed her as a teen: terrorised her into fleeing, leaving her baby behind. Now the man who destroyed her childhood has become the perfect father to her teenage daughter. And her return threatens his future.

A desperate man is a dangerous one.

Simon says she must leave or suffer the consequences. She refuses.

Now it’s his move. Because it's not enough to face your demons.

Sometimes, you must destroy them.


At the end of the street two men sprinted through the light of a streetlamp, arms pumping. One swerved from the path, leaping from between two parked cars into the road.

“Oi!” I heard him shout over the noise of the engine.

He sounded like one of the yobs outside the Duke of York at kicking out time, fuelled and ready to fight. I hit the accelerator, then the clutch, thrusting the gear into second. I waved my arm – move aside – but still he ran. Now the other one followed. Why were they running towards me? Surely, they’d want to save Jez? Their mouths were ferocious squares, their fists clenched. If I stopped, they’d frighten the children. Or worse.

I jammed my foot on the accelerator. The engine screamed as we headed straight at them. Move, move. Their snarls turned to shock and they jumped aside, too late as a fist or a foot smacked the side of the car, while from the back seat came a child’s shriek.

“… bloody money … you bastard…”

In the rear-view mirror I watched them standing in the road, arms raised, until a siren belted out and they sprinted away from us and away from the house and Jez.

“It’s okay,” I told the children. “We’re safe now.”

But from what? As I slowed for the junction, jerking sobs reached me from the back seat, masked by the blast of the siren. To my right, houses flashed blue as the fire engine came closer.

Clutch, accelerate, take your time. Where should I go? I turned the car in the other direction, towards home. Something I hadn’t called my old flat for weeks now. But what if those men knew it was me driving and hunted us down? Were they the ones Jez had been worried about? The reason he… A tear rolled down my cheek and I brushed it away. Don’t blubber now.

We needed to go somewhere safe after I’d collected our old belongings. Somewhere we wouldn’t be found, while I tried to work out what was going on. My mum’s? I shook my head, unable to believe I’d connected her with the word ‘safe’. But she was my only hope. No one here knew the old me. I was Karis now.

I looked in the mirror at the children, forced lightness into my voice. “Fancy a trip to your nan’s?”

They looked as blank as I felt. They didn’t know what a nan was, poor sods. I grimaced. Knowing my mum, they were better off that way.

About The Author

SIMON SAYS isn’t my first thriller. Several unpublished novels went before it, but there was something about this story that made me come back to it time-and-time again. Although it was written in 2015, recently a few author friends encouraged me to publish it as they remembered reading it years before.

I used to work in an office where the wider team comprised people working with drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence and general community safety. I wrote SIMON SAYS during this period and my team provided information and advice. Also, the Red Watch team at the local fire station read my first chapter during their tea break and advised on a couple of points to make it more accurate (I thought it would be one person, not the whole team reading it!).

Currently, I am completing a novel in another genre but I really enjoy writing thrillers, so I am planning my next one.

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