Blink_of_an_Eye

Covenant Communications, 2010.

BACK TEASER:

Childhood was a happy, carefree time for Joseph Ramirez. At least that’s how he used to remember it. But since the near-fatal traffic accident that landed him in the hospital with brain trauma, he’s not so sure. Along with physical pain, Joseph now suffers recurring nightmares. Each night the heart-wrenching dreams grow increasingly vivid and graphic—to the point that Joseph’s hospital roommate reports that Joseph talks in his sleep, often crying out in anguish and remorse. To complicate matters, a ruthless lawyer is challenging Joseph’s innocence in the traffic accident. When defense attorney Michelle Haas comes to his aid, they discover they knew each other as children, and soon another forgotten experience comes into play—one that goes deeper than simple friendship. Are Joseph’s night terrors actually repressed memories? Does he speak the truth during his unconscious midnight hours? And if so, what will that mean when Joseph’s hospital roommate claims he confessed to murder? Soon Joseph realizes there’s only one way to uncover the truth about his family and himself—involving reliving a past he has unknowingly worked all his life to forget.

REVIEWS:

Gregg Luke masterfully employs contemporary hypnotherapy to uncover a devastating past in the psychologically gripping novel. Intense and very moving. –Brian M. Jensen, M.S., Psy.D. Clinical Psychologist.

A tremendous and powerful story. –Jennie Hansen, Merdian Magazine

Blink of an Eye tells a gripping story that could very easily be many people’s reality who deal with domestic violence and child abuse. It’s one I like will never forget. –Fire and Ice Review blog

Gregg Luke adds vivid and correct details that help his characters pop off the page and come to life. –Association for Mormon Letters.

AUTHOR’S NOTES:

This was my first psychological thriller. The idea came from seeing a preponderance of stories about people who get amnesia and spend the novel trying to figure out who they are. I thought it’d cool if instead they suddenly begin to remember things they had no idea they’d ever done while still cognizant of who they are. Also I wanted to see if it was possible to write a story when most of the action and suspense takes place in memories (generally considered a taboo in writing). And I think I did it. I used Santa Barbara as a setting in homage to my home town. Writing about psychology, hypnotherapy, and mental health is a challenge because contemporary opinions, theories, and acceptances are constantly changing. But I think I stayed true to the dialog of the day.

One of the more frequent questions I get asked is if this story contains any personal accounts or experiences. The answer, thankfully, is no. I had a great childhood.

Blink of an Eye was my third Whitney Finalist. Interestingly, it wasn’t included in the Mystery/Suspense category. Instead, the academy placed it in General Fiction.

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  • Gudguy

    I have some confusion about the nationality of the Vandenlundervalts. In chapter 21 of “Blink of an Eye”, this couple is introduced as neighbors of Joseph Ramirez. The text says this couple is from Aalborg, Jutland, Denmark. I notice however that the transcription of their accents seems German or Dutch, and their parting words are “tot ziens” which I believe is Dutch. Is it common for Danish persons of that region to also speak Dutch, or is this an anomaly?

    • greggluke1

      Good catch. That was actually something I argued with my publisher over. They claimed common foreign expressions are universally used; e.g. almost everyone knows what hola and adios and aloha means. Obviously they won out. Alas. I’ve had several people comment on the error. Regrettably, I’m sure it won’t be the last error I make.