My Heart is Yours
by Amanda Leigh
Release Date: 05/18/15
Summary from Goodreads:
Samantha Marie Ramsden has three brothers. Craig, John and Matt. When tragedy strikes their family, Craig takes on the task of becoming his siblings legal guardian. It’s hard enough being someone’s guardian, but when you’ve only recently entered adulthood yourself it’s almost impossible to know where to draw the line between sibling and ‘parent’.
This is made even harder on him when Sam starts to get close to a long time friend, Jason. It looks like their friendship could turn into something more. An idea that Craig has never been too happy with. Spanning six years, My Heart is Yours explores family, friendship, love and much more. As well as asking the question: Would you defy family for love?
About the Author
Amanda Leigh graduated with a BA in English and Communications and a double minor in Psychology and Creative Writing. During college, she worked on the literary magazine and loved every minute of it. She adores cats and has one named Sawyer - named after one of her favorite characters in Lost. Amanda enjoys reading, writing avidly in a journal, writing poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction, cooking, listening to music, singing, swimming and art - particularly photography. Amanda is a bit of a chocoholic and is slightly obsessed with office supplies. She has many ideas for stories so keep an eye out for more work from her.
Five and a half year old Samantha slept in her white threadbare sheets. Tonight the wind was coming through particularly strong from the cracks in the wooden boards on her window. Her small body shivered.
The door creaked open and her mother entered. Sam had the same blonde hair as her mother. Her eyes were her own though. Changing from blue, to grey, to blue-grey, to green or any combination of these colors seemingly simultaneously. Sandra’s hand approached her daughter’s shoulder and she shook her roughly awake. The clock on the wall read three o’ clock in the morning. Sam rubbed her eyes. “Come on!” Her mother said as she looked over her shoulder. “Get out of bed, now!” She grabbed a hammer from the toolbox they kept in Sam’s room, went to the boarded up window and started tearing the boards to the floor. Wood splintered through the air. “Go on.” She gestured to the window. “Get out. Go.”
Sam hesitated for half a second then climbed through. She knew she couldn’t ask questions. She got into trouble when she asked questions.
Sandra wiggled through the window; she cursed aloud as the glass cut her shoulder.
“Don’t try to run away from me!” The hoarse shout came from behind them. Sam’s father. Sam knew what it meant when he was like this.
Sandra pushed Sam into the car, ran to the other side and jumped in. “Mommy.” Sam said as they went speeding past houses. “What’s wrong?”
“If you must know, your father’s more drunk than usual. He has a gun and he says he’s gonna kill us. Satisfied?” Sam’s eyes widened as she looked in the rearview mirror. There was a car right on their tail. Sam stretched in the front seat to see who it was; she recognized the face of her father. “Mommy!” She yelled. Her mother ignored her. “The only reason I’m taking you with me is cuz as a single parent with no job I might get some money from the government.” “Mommy!” She yelled again. “Otherwise I’d just let him kill you.” The car stopped, jolted forward and stopped again. “Damn it. We’re out of gas.” Sam’s mom muttered. Sirens wailed in the background.
Beside them, Sam heard the screech of tires. Blonder hair hit Sam’s face as she turned her head toward the noise. In the car beside them her father scooted across the front seats; his eyes wild with rage. A flash of black came from behind him. Sandra frantically tried to get the car started. Too late. An arm shot out around her neck; holding her fast. Her husband held the shiny black gun to her head and before Sam could scream from the sound, the trigger boomed and her mother’s body slumped over on the steering wheel. Deep red blood gushed out of her head forming a pool on the floor. ;
“Hey!” John’s voice echoed through the house. “Damn it!” Sam grinned to herself; John did the same thing every time he got home from work. He’d swing open the door, scream “Hey!” then stub his toe on the dark brown wooden coffee table and curse under his breathe. He’d done the same thing every weekend since Sam was fourteen. That’s when he got his part time job at the deli about four blocks away from their house. He kept half of his pay; the other half went to paying the bills.
“What are you doin’?” Matt asked as he walked into their small kitchen/dining room.
“Craig and I are making dinner. Which means you and John get to do the dishes.”
Matt’s face fell into a frown, doing dishes was his least favorite chore. His baby fat hadn’t all gone away yet, so his face still had that slightly round shape. Matt was a little more pale than the rest of them. His eyes were sky blue and thoughtful. The eyes of a dreamer. He had light brown hair with dirty blonde highlights; it was a little long. When their mom was still alive she would always beg him to get it cut. (He rarely did).
“Hey, baby sis!” John said as his slightly tan hand messed up Sam’s hair. Sam grinned an amused and frustrated grin. “Baby sis”, that’s what John always called her. Even though she constantly reminded him he was only about a year older than her.
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