A past life, a past war, and a past love. Peter St John can’t foresee a future until he confronts his past sins.
When photojournalist Peter St John returns home after a two-year absence, the life he’s been running from catches up. For years his mother’s presence, coupled with Pete’s own psychic gift, has triggered visits to 1917. There, he relives battles of the Great War, captures the heyday of Coney Island on canvas, and falls in love with an enchanting and enigmatic songstress named Esme. Present-day Pete still pines for Esme, and his love endures…but so does his vivid memory of killing her.
When he discovers family heirlooms that serve as proof of his crimes, Pete will have to finally confront his former life. He also meets a young woman—who is more than what she seems—with a curious connection to his family. As century-old secrets unravel, can Pete reconcile a murder from his past before it destroys his future?
The first two books in Laura Spinella’s Ghost Gifts trilogy of paranormal mysteries introduces readers to Aubrey Ellis, a woman who has been able to communicate with the dead since she was a child. These novels centre around Aubrey and her husband, a hard-nosed investigative reporter, but in Echo Moon, the final book in the set, the focus shifts to Aubrey and Levi’s son, Pete, a talented photojournalist who spends his life reporting from some of the world’s most dangerous places. It’s an intriguing story that, after a slow start, becomes a compelling one, as the author skilfully weaves together two interconnected stories – one, the story of a young singer in the early part of the twentieth century, and the other concerning Pete’s search for the truth about a shattering event that took place shortly after the end of the First World War.
Aubrey Ellis’ psychic gifts – or her curse – have been passed to her son, who has, for as long as he can remember, been aware that he has lived a past life. He has memories and/or visions of events from the early part of the last century and remembers fighting, and then documenting events as a war photographer, in World War One. Pete also lives with a massive burden of guilt, knowing that he killed the woman he loved – whom he knows only as Esme – in that past life, and that weight is so heavy that it often threatens to consume him utterly. The images of war that haunt him day after day and night after night are so disturbing that he can’t bear the idea of spending more time with his memories and trying to find out the truth about Esme; and the violent outbursts that inevitably follow his visions make him even more determined to leave his past in the past. Being around his mother seems to intensify his ‘gift’ and increase the number and vividness of his recollections; and when Echo Moon opens, Pete has just returned home after two years spent embedded with troops in the Middle-East and other war-torn places. He spends his life searching for numbness by way of twenty-first century wars, running from his past life by throwing himself into untold dangers in this one.
Aubrey is naturally concerned for her son, and can see the toll his way of life is taking on him. She knows he is haunted by the belief he was a murderer in his past life, and wants him to seek help in the form of regression therapy, but Pete is dead set against it. But when, for the first time ever, he feels Esme’s spirit reaching for him in his present life, he starts to realise that something is changing, as his past and present lives have never intersected before. When he offers to go to Long Island to check out a property that Aubrey has recently inherited from her grandmother, Pete is staggered to discover yet more connections between his family and his past life.
You can read the rest of this review at All About Romance.