This unnamed piece is by a fabulous artist who happens to be my mom, Barbara J. Bleich. She created this years ago, and it befuddled and totally entranced me, something her work tends to do a lot. It may have been one of the initial seeds that planted the idea for THE BARGAINING, maybe even before I realized it. But after I began writing, it was this image that kept coming back to me time and again. Anyone interested in seeing more of her work should drop me a line. Seriously. Until then, I hope you enjoy staring at this piece as much as I do. Good luck with the hunt, everyone! xo, Carly
The fact that neither of her parents wants to deal with her is nothing new to Penny. She’s used to being discussed like a problem, a problem her mother has finally passed on to her father. What she hasn’t gotten used to is her stepmother…especially when she finds out that she’ll have to spend the summer with April in the remote woods of Washington to restore a broken-down old house. Set deep in a dense forest, the old Carver House is filled with abandoned antique furniture, rich architectural details, and its own chilling past. The only respite Penny can find away from April’s renovations is in Miller, the young guy who runs the local general store. He’s her only chance at a normal, and enjoyable, summer.But Miller has his own connection to the Carver House, and it’s one that goes beyond the mysterious tapping Penny hears at her window, the handprints she finds smudging the glass panes, and the visions of children who beckon Penny to follow them into the dark woods. Miller’s past just might threaten to become the terror of Penny’s future….
Carly Anne West is the author of YA novels THE MURMURINGS and THE BARGAINING, as well as various bizarre fictions. She lives and writes in Seattle, WA between the trees and the ocean.
Okay, so that secret number? It's 5!
Looking for where to go next? Hop on over to Deirdre Riordan Hall's blog!