Novel excerpt​ – Secrets in the Lake

Full on edit mode – feedback welcome 😊


The book was captivating and before she realised one and a half hour had passed. Her stomach reminded her she still needed breakfast. Reluctantly putting the book aside, placing it into her handbag, she got ready and headed up the road to town.

She walked quickly to stay warm in the chilly May air only passed by a couple out walking their dogs and a small group of young teenagers dressed for Saturday sports. Mandy remembered back to when she was a young teenager playing basketball. Being normal height she had always felt like a dwarf amongst the taller girls. With her ever-present internal desire to do her best she still ended up a valued player on her team. They had so much fun going on tournaments and did quite well one year almost winning the state title.

Jolted out of reminiscing by a young cyclist nearly running into her, Mandy realised she had nearly walked past her favourite cafe. She backtracked the short distance and walked into the warm cafe greeted by wafts of brewed coffee and pastry. Suddenly ravishing she quickly ordered a large pancake breakfast and a steaming hot pot of coffee The cafe was almost full, mainly young students and couples. Mandy settled into reading her book again while waiting for her food. The coffee was delicious, strong enough to jolt the brain cells back into action.

Before long a large plate of 2 pancakes filled with berries, cream and nuts was put in front of her. The waitress smiled at her. Mandy realised it was a girl she used to know from back at school.

“Hello, I think I know you,” the waitress said with another smile. “Are you from around here?”

“Yes, ​I’m Mandy Reid. I’m pretty sure we went to school together. You were in the class above me?”

“Oh yes, I remember now. Mandy, how nice to see you again. Are you here for a family visit? Oh and I’m Kate in case you have forgotten,“

Again the smile.  Kate’s face open and questioning, Mandy felt instantly warmed to her.

“Nice to meet you again Kate. How lovely. No, ​I’m​ afraid I am here for a funeral. Karl Sonenheim’s funeral. So sad, passing at such a young age. I still can’t believe it.” Mandy explained.

“That’s right. Poor Karl. Prime of his life, and poor Emma, now alone with two young children to care for. So sad,“ Kate replied, then her face frowned.

“It’s still being investigated you know. The death. I guess they have to when someone so young dies suddenly. Emma finding him like that must have been horrible,“ Kate continued, looking at Mandy with a question as if testing to see what Mandy would say or even what she thought of the whole sad situation.

Realising Kate was a keen gossiper, Mandy decided to find out more, but not right then with the cafe full of people.

“Yes it sure is a tragedy,” Mandy said, “I’m​ going to enjoy this delicious breakfast, but why don’t you join me for a coffee when it has quietened down for you?”

“Would love to. Will see how the morning rush turns out, maybe I can grab a few minutes break if it quietens down. Enjoy the breakfast,“ Kate said with another smile then walked away to serve another couple.<<<<<<


  1. This excerpt wants me to read more. I can sense we should be paying attention to Emma. 😊 Even Kate. There are a few changes Unwound write differently but I think an editor will attend to them. For example, instead of “used to know”, just “knew”. It sounds stronger and more certain. Also, there’s the commonly confused word, ‘ravishing’; did you mean ‘ravenous’? When you’re done, I’ll be willing to beta read for you. Sounds like an interesting story.

    Liked by 1 person


    1. Oh thank you Anne. Really appreciate your feedback.
      I am currently busy editing. Through my first edit and onto second. This excerpt was very first draft 🙂
      Id love for you to beta read once Im happy with it. Hope to be ready by end April. Keep you posted 🌷

      Liked by 1 person


      1. Only a pleasure, Sal. And it will be an honor to beta read for you. What I read so far got me interested. 🙂 All the best with the writing. I, on the other hand, am struggling a little but I am more hopeful this month than the last two.

        Liked by 1 person

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