Die Before Nightfall

Die Before Nightfall
О книге

Raven Stevenson was in Lakeview barely twenty-four hours when she heard those ominous words. She'd come to the small Virginie town to reconcile with her brother and forget the haunting memories of her past. She didn't expect to find friends, community - or a thirty-five-year-old mystery of tragic love. Nor did she expect to meet Shane Montgomery, whose love for his ailing aunt Abby breaks through Raven's carefully built defenses.When Abby unwittingly shares some of the secrets behind that long-buried mustery, she and Raven are targeted by someone who wants those secrets silenced - and who's willing to kill both of them to do it.

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“Running away, Raven?”

“Not running.” Raven turned away. “Going home.”

“What is it about me that makes you nervous?” Shane asked. Caught in the spell of sunset, Raven didn’t realize Shane had moved until he was beside her, his hand clasping hers gently. “Stay for a little longer. I promise I won’t talk about princes, frogs, or you.”

“No, it’s getting dark. I’d better head home.” Raven pulled her hand from his and moved through the overgrown cemetery, leading Merry along beside her. Already dusk was beginning to settle on the land, deep violet shadows creeping across the ground. The effect was eerie, the rustle of leaves and hum of insects only adding to Raven’s unease.

Her foot caught on a root and she stumbled, barely catching her balance. A twig snapped somewhere to the right and Merry growled low in her throat, lunging toward the sound.


No one answered, nothing moved in the darkness, yet Raven was sure someone was there. She didn’t wait for more. Breath gasping, heart hammering, she raced toward the cottage.


has always loved making up stories. As a child, she daydreamed elaborate tales in which she was the heroine—gutsy, strong and invincible. Though she soon grew out of her superhero fantasies, her love for storytelling never diminished. She knew early that she wanted to write inspirational fiction, and began writing her first novel when she was a teenager. Still, it wasn’t until her third son was born that she truly began pursuing her dream of being published. Three years later she sold her first book. Now a busy mother of four, Shirlee is a homeschool mom by day and an inspirational author by night. She and her husband and children live in Maryland and share their house with a dog and a guinea pig.


Die Before Nightfall

Published by Steeple Hill Books>™

ISBN: 9781408967447

Die Before Nightfall

© Shirlee McCoy 2005

First Published in Great Britain in 2005

Harlequin (UK) Limited Eton House, 18-24 Paradise Road, Richmond, Surrey TW9 1SR

All rights reserved, including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. The text of this publication or any part thereof may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, including without limitation xerography, photocopying, recording, storage in an information retrieval system, or otherwise, without the written permission of the publisher.

This ebook is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, resold, hired out or otherwise circulated, without the prior consent of the publisher, in any form or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.

All characters in this work have no existence outside the imagination of the author and have no relation whatsoever to anyone bearing the same name or names. They are not even distantly inspired by any individual known or unknown to the author, and all incidents are pure invention.

This edition is published by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises II B.V./S.á.r.l.

® and TM are trademarks owned and used by the trademark owner and/or its licensee. Trademarks marked with ® are registered with the United Kingdom Patent Office and/or the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market and in other countries.


For God will bring every work into judgment,

including every secret thing, whether good or evil.

—Ecclesiastes 12:14

Jude, Caleb, Seth and Emma Grace, if God lined up all the children in the world and let me choose any four, I would choose the four of you. And if you had dirty faces, messy clothes and were whining and crying, I would still choose you. I love you. All the way to the sun and back. Always. No matter what.

A special thank-you to Sara Parker, who read my first, second, third and fourth drafts without flinching, and who offered countless suggestions and advice. And to my editor, Krista Stroever, who walked me through the publication process with grace, humor and an unerring eye for detail. Thanks! This book is much better because of you.

In loving memory of Tony Trainer.

Sixty years wasn’t nearly long enough.

Dear Reader,

Life is filled with ups, downs, twists and turns. That’s not a bad thing when you like roller coasters. But if you’re like me and enjoy the more placid rides, sudden changes in direction can be disconcerting. A lost job, a lost love, illness or death in the family—when we experience those things, it can be hard to remember that God knows every bump and turn our lives will take and that He’s with us through them all, steering us forward, urging us on, quietly whispering to our souls that everything will be all right.

Raven Stevenson’s life is a roller-coaster ride, and she’s ready for it to stop. That means taking a break from her job as a home health-care nurse and moving to Lakeview, Virginia, to reconnect with a brother she hasn’t seen in twenty years. She hopes she’ll have time to think and to reassess the direction her life has taken. Instead she gets pulled into the lives of Abby and Shane Montgomery—an elderly women suffering from dementia and the nephew who is determined to care for her. Together the three of them must confront the past and uncover a secret that just might destroy them all. Only in doing so can they learn the true meaning of God’s grace and love for them.

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