I’m an outcast. Once I had family, friends, a future—now I’m the young woman whose gaze you don’t want to meet as we pass on the street.
Today I’m homeless, sleeping occasionally in a dorm room at St. Michael’s University in south Austin, where my friend Adam lets me crash when I crawl through his window. I used to have a normal life like yours–before I became an amnesiac. No, I’m not a soap opera character and I’m not Jason Bourne. I’m just someone like you—with a chunk of my history missing. Perhaps forever lost.
I grew up in Lakehaven, a wealthy suburb of Austin. I went to the best schools, had great friends, my whole life a glowing hopeful promise in front of me. Then two years ago, when I was seventeen, I crashed my car on a deserted road in the hills above Lakehaven. My passenger and neighbor, my childhood friend David Hall, died. I suffered a brain injury and lost the last three years—including why David and I were even together in a car that night.
We’d grown up together, but we had grown apart. Why were we even in my car? What were we doing, where were we going on that lonely road that led to nowhere? And why was there a note found at the crash site, in my own writing, saying I wish we were dead together.
I can’t imagine I wrote it or that I would hurt David. But I don’t know who I was then. The Jane of now might not be the same person as the Jane of then.
My mother wants me off the streets and in a mental institution—I keep moving so she can’t find me. David’s mom and dad—our next door neighbors I once loved as surrogate parents—hate me and blame me for David’s death. My best friend, Kamala, was also David’s girlfriend and mounted a campaign to destroy me when I returned to our high school. My one friend Adam seems to have his own set of secrets and a classmate named Trevor might hold the clues to who I really was that night—but he won’t tell me. And Kevin, a psych grad student, seems very interested in the peculiarities of my case. All of them will try to tell me who I once was—but are they rewriting my lost history to suit their needs?
Today, the second anniversary of the crash, someone has posted on my abandoned Facebook page I know what you claim you don’t remember. I know what happened that night. Someone—who blames me for David’s death—is trying to hurt me. It’s not going to work. I’ve decided to investigate that night, amnesia be damned. I’m going to find the truth even if I never find my memories.
You can read more about Jane in Blame, a psychological suspense novel.
Sometimes the person you thought you knew best.
Turns out to be someone you never really knew at all.
The crash that killed him
Two years ago, Jane Norton crashed her car on a lonely road, killing her friend David and leaving her with amnesia. At first, everyone was sympathetic. Then they found Jane’s note: I wish we were dead together.
A girl to blame
From that day the town turned against her. But even now Jane is filled with questions: Why were they on that road? Why was she with David? Did she really want to die?
The secrets she should forget
Most of all, she must find out who has just written her an anonymous message: I know what really happened. I know what you don’t remember.
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Meet the author
Jeff Abbott is the New York Times bestselling author of eighteen novels. He is the winner of an International Thriller Writers Award (for the Sam Capra thriller The Last Minute) and is a three-time nominee for the Edgar award. He lives in Austin with his family. You can visit his website at www.JeffAbbott.com.
All comments are welcomed.