I had the pleasure of reading Janyre Trump’s debut novel, Shadows in the Mind’s Eye. The book transports you to 1940’s Hot Springs, Arkansas where Charlotte’s husband Sam has returned from serving his country in the Pacific theater. He is not the same man who Charlotte fell in love with – he is broken and believes he is crazy. When Sam tried to kill his own brother and claims to see outlaw men on the mountain, Charlotte begins to question his sanity and her safety.
In the tradition of Hitchcock with a hint of psychological thriller, Shadows In the Mind’s Eye explores the illness we now call PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and persistent love in a world determined to destroy it.
Sometimes God uses broken things to save us . . . Ain’t no light that can get through something solid. It sneaks through the broken places.Dovie May (Sam’s mother)
Tromp’s inspiration for Shadow’s in the Mind’s Eye was her own grandparents’ stories of adjusting to life when her grandfather returned home from World War II. Back then, soldiers returning home rarely talked about their experiences and the difficult adjustment of “getting back to normal.” In the process of writing the story, the author did extensive research on treatments for what was known as battle fatigue at the time. She also drew on personal experiences in dealing with PTSD herself.
Readers will also learn more about the sordid history of Hot Springs being home to the largest illegal gambling racket in the country where the town served as a sort of gangster retreat for members of the mob. The setting and illegal activity provide an excellent backdrop for a suspenseful story.
About the Author
Janyre Tromp (pronounced Jan-ear) is a historical suspense novelist who loves spinning tales that, at their core, hunt for beauty, even when it isn’t pretty. She’s the author of Shadows in the Mind’s Eye and coauthor of It’s a Wonderful Christmas.
A firm believer in the power of an entertaining story, Tromp is also a book editor and published children’s book author. She lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan with her husband, two kids, two crazy cats, and a slightly eccentric Shetland Sheepdog.
A complimentary e-copy of Shadows in the Mind’s Eye was provided to facilitate this post. No other compensation was received in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own. No affiliate links are present in this post. Please see my disclosure for more information.