Set Me Free
Author: London Setterby
Publication date: July 8th 2016
Genres: Gothic, New Adult, Romance
Miranda Lewis is desperate to get away from her controlling ex–so desperate she leaves him in the middle of the night. She ends up on a remote island off the Maine coast, where she befriends a bubbly shopkeeper, Claire, and becomes fascinated with Claire’s son, big, brooding Owen Larsen, a woodworker who keeps to himself. Even the friendliest locals here are secretive–and Owen is at the center of their secrets.
Still, Miranda loves the salt air, the craggy coastline, and, most of all, the work of the island’s beloved local painter, Suzanna White. Miranda wants to stay–to claim a life of her own, to paint again. But the longer she stays, the more her fascination with Owen increases. Why is there a painting of his stern, handsome face in the art gallery by the beach? And why is everyone so afraid of him?
Hello! I’m London, a writer, lawyer, and life-long New Englander. I write all flavors of romance, from surreal fantasy romances to raw gritty contemporaries. I also write across the gender and sexuality spectrums. Everything I write is a little bit funny, a little bit sad, and probably kind of strange.
You might know me from Wattpad–my Wattpad Featured Read, Set Me Free, a Gothic romance, will be released as an ebook and in print in summer 2016.
My gritty erotic romance, Breathe, is currently being serialized on Radish, a free app. It will be released in ebook/print as well sometime after Set Me Free.
I’d been sleeping in my back seat most nights for the past three weeks, ever since I’d gotten the waitressing job at the Widow’s Walk. The Viking’s friend, Andy, was as energetic and upbeat as Owen was reserved and serious. And Andy was thrilled that a potential new hire had walked into their bar before they’d even posted the position. You must be psychic, he had said, while a slender, curly-haired waitress, Margot, scowled irritably at me from the corner. Just lucky, was my reply. I was lucky—I could have ended up anywhere, so directionless and desperate, but instead I’d come to this island, and had found the Artist’s Lodge, and a muse in the form of the mysterious Suzanna White.
And now I had a job. Since then, I’d been putting a little more money on the prepaid debit card I’d gotten to pay my bills—only two now, just my car and my phone—and I didn’t have to give a single cent to Rhys. That was enough to make me feel as rich as a queen.
Still… I was nowhere close to a month’s rent, never mind a first, last, and security deposit. I’d been staying in a motel in the next closest town, Bellisle, to shower and sleep in a bed twice a week. Otherwise I used disposable, no-water face cloths and dry shampoo and tried to be patient. I was happy enough to trade more frequent showers and proper heat for a space that was solely my own.
I dug a compact mirror out of the side door pocket where I’d been storing my makeup. My eyes looked huge and dark, still hollow with my nightmare. My long, black hair lay in mats and tangles. But it was all right. I’d fixed myself up from worse.
I washed up and did my makeup. After I’d combed out my hair carefully, I pulled it back into a ponytail. Then I reached for my black work shirt, only to remember I had the day off. Too bad. I would rather be at work, making money. Assembling the building blocks of my new life.
Deciding to stick with my one indulgence on one of my rare days off—a visit with Claire, and a coffee—I grabbed my purse. My phone was flashing. The beep in my dream had come from real life.
I stared at the screen, sick with anxiety.
The one from this morning said: I miss you. Rhys had probably sent it while he was walking to class, a stack of law books tucked in the crook of his arm, looking dapper in one of his sleek gray suits.
Below that was a new text from last night. I love you, Mira.
This one he’d probably sent from home—his home, now, though some of my clothes still hung in the closet, and the spring wreath I’d made still decorated our front door. In spite of myself, I wondered what Rhys had eaten for dinner last night—how much time he’d taken away from studying in order to deal with the nuisances of daily life.
Deliberately, I scrolled up to the text from earlier yesterday evening: Who the fuck do you think you are, leaving me like this?
He had been like this almost from the beginning—charm and rage lived in equal parts inside of him, as inextricably intertwined as strands of DNA.
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