Past Presence

Only by looking into the past can Audrey save her future

Past Presence is Nicole Bross’s debut novel, and what a debut it is. She delivers an imaginative and clever story… One gets the feeling there may be a little something in the author that likes to color outside the lines of social conformity, which makes her a great match for readers of modern fiction. Nicole Bross’s Past Presence is a thoroughly satisfying curl-up-in-your-pajamas-and-read-it-straight-through supernatural delight.

Colorado Book Review,  ★★★★★

Audrey Eames is happy living the wanderer’s life. After a near-death experience in her teens, Audrey can see people’s past lives whenever her skin touches theirs, and afraid of being labeled delusional, she’s never stayed in one place too long or made any deep connections.

So when Audrey’s estranged aunt dies and leaves her the historic Soberly Inn and Public House on the scenic Oregon coast, Audrey wants nothing to do with it. She is determined to sell the inn and leave town before someone discovers the power she’s been hiding from the world, but clauses in her aunt’s will seem to block her at every turn.

Yet once ensconced in Soberly’s small town life, the people—particularly the bartender, Kellen Greene—start to grow on her, and she begins to feel that maybe she’s finally found a place of her own. As accepting as the townspeople seem, Audrey fears their reactions—and Kellen’s rejection—and decides to keep her visions a secret. But all is not well in Soberly. Soon after Audrey arrives, people in town start dying in the same manner as in their past lives—but in this lifetime it’s murder. When suspicion starts to fall on Audrey and her new beau Kellen, Audrey vows to use her gift to find the murderer and protect the people she loves—before it’s too late.

FINALIST – Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Crime Novel, 2019