Through the Glass
by Lisa J. Hobman
Lisa J. Hobman’s new novel, Through the Glass, has just been released. You may remember Lisa as the author of Bridge Over the Atlantic, which is currently ON SALE and has been nominated for a Novel Grounds Literary Award for Best Romance.
A broken heart can never be a blank canvas…
You meet someone, fall in love, and live happily ever after…right?
That’s what Jim MacDuff thought, but after years of being blissfully happy, everything he holds dear comes crashing spectacularly down thanks to his interfering mother-in-law. Felicity “Flick” Johnston-Hart is passionate about painting what she sees through the glass. Just like the subjects of her paintings, she’s viewed her life as an observer instead of really living. Although she adores her first love, Jim, more than life, her mother’s expectations eventually chip away at her, making her believe that painting and Jim are simply not enough.
After settling back into life as a single man in the stunning Scottish Highlands, Jim is graced with an unexpected and unwanted visitor bringing painful news that he would rather not hear. A letter from beyond the grave leads him to do something he never imagined and takes him on a journey to try to help Flick rekindle her passion for painting…and maybe win her love again in the process.
Can Jim and Flick make things right before it’s too late, or will events leave them heartbroken and alone forever?
February 2009 – The break up
“So, that’s it then, Flick?” Jim raised his arms in exasperation. “You’re leaving? You’ve completely given up?” He was past trying to convince Flick that they could make a go of it; work things out; get through this and come out the other side stronger. The past few months had been one argument after another and Flick had spent less and less time at home.
“It’s for the best, James. And please don’t call me Flick.” She sighed, “It’s not my name. Not anymore. I grew up. It’s good in the adult world you should visit sometime, you might like it,” she snorted derisively.
Jim shook his head; sadness oozing from every pore. “Aye, well you’ll always be Flick to me. And I’ll always be Jim. What’s with all this ‘Felicity and James’ bollocks anyway?” His accent always became stronger when he was angry. This was one of those occasions when the true Scotsman came out fighting. His chest heaved as he tried to calm the storm raging beneath his skin.
He almost didn’t recognise the woman standing before him in their bedroom; her fitted designer clothes complete with pearls and a shoulder length smooth sleek hairstyle. Such a contrast to the girl he fell in love with. Back then it was all flowing blonde waves and long, floating skirts. She was softer then; in every way.
“Well, as I said James, Felicity is my name…Flick was left behind at university. She was doe-eyed, foolish and rash…look, there’s no point us going over old ground.” She pulled the handle up on her wheeled suitcase. “I’ll be staying with Polly and Matt for a while whilst I figure out my next move.”
Matt had once been Jim’s closest friend but that friendship had somehow fizzled as his relationship with Polly had intensified. That saddened Jim.
Felicity went on, “Nilsson-Perkins have offered to help find me a new place near the city centre so I can be closer to the main gallery.” She wandered over to him and placed her hand on his arm. “It’s for the best, James. I think you know that deep down.”
He looked, pleadingly, into her eyes, his chest still rising and falling at a rapid rate. “For whom? For me?. I don’t think so.” His voice cracked as he shook his head; he stared intently and for several moments she seemed caught in his eyes. He thought he saw her shield begin to melt but she shook her head and looked away.
Turning back to him she shrugged her shoulders. “It was inevitable when you think about it. We’re from two different worlds…we want completely different things, James.” Her voice softened as she squeezed his arm. Her blue eyes, however, that were once full of love, were ice cold.
She wheeled her case toward the bedroom door and turned back to face him one last time. Her eyes were glassy with unshed tears now and Jim was relieved to see some, albeit small, expression of human emotion from the woman he had witnessed, slowly, becoming some kind of hard, Siberian robot.
“For what’s it’s worth…James…I do love you. You were my first love and so I probably always will. I just feel like…” She paused, clenching her eyes closed as if to find the strength to carry on speaking, a tear escaped. “Like maybe we’re not good for each other. We’ve grown apart. I’m ambitious and you…you want babies and the white picket fence thing…I’m just not ready…I’m not sure I ever will be. In a way I’m doing you a favour.” A sob escaped her throat as she spoke. “This way at least you get to meet someone new and have children and do all the family things that I’m just not capable of.” She sounded to Jim as though she was trying to convince herself.
Jim’s lower lip began to tremble. “I don’t want anyone else…it’s you. It’s always been you.” He clenched his jaw. “What I don’t get, Felicity, is that you wanted those things too. We were both on the same page. I don’t understand how we changed.”
“We didn’t change. I did. Like I said, I grew up.” She shook her head. “I know that you haven’t changed,” she snorted. “Sorry, Jim but it’s true. In all these years you’ve kept the same hairstyle, the same clothing and the same laid back attitude. You still work in the same second hand book store, you still drive that ancient Land Rover and you still take that bloody dog everywhere you go! You’re not a student anymore, James. Maybe I want more, huh? Maybe I want someone who makes an effort!” Her voice gained an octave as her emotions began to get the better of her.
Jim widened his eyes in horror. “Whoa! Now just hang on there, lassie!” He held up his hands and his stomach knotted at her stabbing words as they sliced at his heart.
He stepped toward her. “You can’t say that I don’t make effort. Just because I’m in no way materialistic doesn’t mean I don’t care. I love you. I always have. You are my world! I don’t need things, Felicity, I need you!” His heart ached as it bombarded the inside of his chest. “I’ve done everything in my power to make you happy. I don’t know what else I could have done. And for the record, I’m not the one who’s given up here!” He raised his voice too, finally giving in to the pent up frustration he’d been harbouring.
“James, we want different things, accept it. Move on…please!” She opened the door and he made a grab for her. She swung around and crashed into his arms. Without thinking he took her face in his hands and kissed her with all the passion he could muster. To his amazement she didn’t slap him; she kissed him back. Dropping her suitcase she seemed overwhelmed by desire, anger, passion, lust, whatever the hell it was; she grabbed at his dark, shaggy hair as he ran his hands through hers; desperate to express his love for her; desperate to make her change her mind.
He moved from her mouth to her neck, his kisses urgent. Her head rolled backward and she moaned, grabbing at his T-shirt and pulling it over his head in one swift aggressive move. Before either could realize what they were doing or how they got there, they staggered backward and tumbled, wrapped around each other, onto the bed; their lips locked as their tongues danced and probed each other’s mouths.
Through the Glass is emotional, heart warming, funny and frustrating.
Flick and Jim’s story is a roller coaster ride from start to finish. From the first chapter I was sucked in and I couldn’t stop reading, I just had to know what happened.
Flick, she is frustrating and annoying to begin with. I wanted to reach into my kindle give her a shake and tell her to open her eyes. Penny, Flick’s mother influences her life in more ways than one. Surely all you want is for your daughter to be happy right? A painter at heart but in her mind she needs the successful job, successful rich husband but at what cost? She then started to grow on me and I started to like her and wanted to know what was really going on deep down.
Jim, he is a loveable, kind, gorgeous and his Scots accent just adds to the appeal. He loves Flick more than anything and all he wants is for her to be happy. He’s a simple guy doesn’t need expensive things or a fancy job all he needs is Flick. You can’t help but love him.
When you love someone do you break your own heart for them to be happy, even when you know it’s not truly what they want from life or do you fight?
Love moves in mysterious ways.
Through the Glass made me cry, laugh, angry and sit on the edge of my seat. You can picture all the places Lisa talks about, it’s like you there in the book watching it all happen. Beautifully written and gripping from start to finish. Memorable and a must read.
About the Author
Lisa is a happily married mother of one with two crazy dogs. She especially enjoys being creative; has worked as a singer and now writes almost full time! Writing has always been something Lisa has enjoyed, although in the past it has centered on poetry and song lyrics, some of which appear in her stories.
In 2012 Lisa and her family relocated from Yorkshire, England to their beloved Scotland; a place of happy holidays and memories for them. The story in her debut novel, Bridge Over the Atlantic, was building in her mind for a long while but until the relocation, she never had the time to put it down in black and white; working full time as a High School Science Learning Mentor and studying swallowed up any spare time she had.
Making the move north of the border has given Lisa the opportunity to spread her wings and fulfill her dream. Writing is now a deep passion and she has enjoyed every minute of working towards being published. Lisa is working with a wonderful editor at 5 Prince Publishing who is a bestselling author in her own right. Through the Glass is Lisa’s second novel and number three is waiting in the wings! Numbers four and five – a miniseries – are almost complete.
Lisa’s books are for adults ages 17+ due to mature content.