Homecoming, Sterling Wood Series, Book1

Book Cover

DRAMA DETECTIVE CRIME ACTION MYSTERY ROMANCE SUSPENSE/THRILLER MELODRAMA

Contemporary

Charlene Johnson

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Logline

Lily Sommers reluctantly returns to Sterling Wood to attend her Uncle Jimmy's funeral - a town she left years ago. She must also face Luc Pearson again, the high school sweetheart who betrayed. But that isn't all that is waiting for her. Someone in town wants her dead and she doesn't know why.

Genre

Drama,Detective,Crime,Action,Mystery,Romance,Suspense/Thriller,Melodrama

Short Summary

Lily is waiting for her airplane to land in Pittsburgh. She is reluctant to return but she had to attend her Uncle Jimmy's funeral. She is also apprehensive about seeing Luc, the high school sweetheart who cheated on her the night before they were supposed to leave for Los Angeles.


Lily's kidnapper/attacker is revealed and her identity shocks everyone. Lily's attacker is shot and killed during the rescue attempt in an abandoned coal mine. Lily is reunited with her mother, a woman she hasn't seen since she was a little girl.

Setting

Sterling Wood, Pennsylvania (an imaginary coal mining town near Pittsburgh)

Based on a True Story

No

Plot - Premise

Overcoming Monster/Villain,Quest,Tragedy

Plot - Other Elements

Meaningful Message,Twist,Happy Ending

Mature Audience Themes

Nudity, Language/Profanity

Main Character Details

Name: Lily Sommers

Age: 28

Gender: Female

Role: Protagonist

Key Traits: Insecure,Educated,Gracious,Faithful,Engaging,Empathetic,Complex,Modest,Sexy,Secretive,Romantic,Selfless

Additional Character Details

Name: Luc Pearson

Age: 28

Gender: Male

Role: Protagonist

Key Traits: Adventurous,Aspiring,Charming,Empathetic,Faithful,Gracious,Complex,Heartthrob,Honorable,Heroic,Insecure,Strong Moral Code,Romantic,Skillful,Visionary,Selfless,Masculine,Sexy,Funny,Seductive,Decisive

Additional Character Details

Name: Jesse Watson

Age: 38

Gender: Male

Role: sidekick

Key Traits: Badass,Aggressive,Adventurous,Decisive,Engaging,Faithful,Gracious,Heartthrob,Honorable,Leader,Unapologetic,Strong Moral Code,Sarcastic,Skillful,Funny,Outspoken,Selfless,Blunt,Sexy,Masculine

Additional Character Details

Name: Bronson Xavier

Age: 51

Gender: Male

Role: emotional

Key Traits: Adventurous,Charming,Badass,Complex,Confident,Decisive,Empathetic,Engaging,Faithful,Gracious,Heartthrob,Heroic,Honorable,Leader,Strong Moral Code,Sophisticated,Secretive,Romantic,Skillful,Selfless,Sexy,Masculine

Development Pitch

Homecoming is a romantic suspense thriller set in a small coal-mining town in Southwestern Pennsylvania - where the local cemetery remains segregated. Lily Sommers, a successful black photographer, goes back home to attend her uncle’s funeral and must face the emotional demons that drove her away years ago. Luc Pearson, her white ex-high school sweetheart, is in the center of it. His infidelity drove her away. Lily finds out her uncle’s best friend, the Sterling Wood Police Chief, believes he was murdered. As the story unfolds, Lily discovers her family was hiding secrets that would stun the town. There also someone in town who wanted her dead and she doesn’t know why. The undercurrent of racism and financial superiority plays an insidious role in the story. It directly affects Lily and the secrets that have been kept hidden since well before she was born. Surprising twists and turns in the plot will keep the audience hooked. The audience will love the tragic love story of Lily’s interracial parents, Eleanor Sommers and Bronson Xavier, who had to battle racial prejudice, death threats, and vengeance. The audience will also discover what lengths they had to go to preserve their love. Homecoming is an exciting thriller and romance story that will leave the audience believing in love, no matter the cost. It can be adapted into a TV movie or a mini-series.

About The Author

Charlene Johnson is an author of Paranormal Romance and Romantic Suspense/Thriller from Sacramento. She has been recognized as a 2020 Book Excellence Award Finalist for her book, Homecoming, Book 1, Sterling Wood Series in the Romance Category. Charlene is currently writing two paranormal romance series, Circle of the Red Scorpion and Circle of the Red Scorpion World, a spin-off series and a romantic suspense/thriller series, Sterling Wood. She has also published poems and short stories.

Target Audiences

Age: 18-34,35-54,55+

Target Gender: Female Leaning

Group Specific

Information not completed

Publishing Details

Status: Yes: with a Publisher

Publisher: Kingston Publishing Company

Year Published: 2020

Hard Copy Available

Yes

ISBN

9781645331414

Genre

SUSPENSE, THRILLER, ROMANCE, MATURE AUDIENCE, DRAMA

Brief

Lily goes back to her hometown for her uncle's funeral. There, she has to deal with a love from the past and a possible murder. Her life might be at risk, especially after she finds out a big secret about her parents. After kidnapping Lily, the murderer is killed, and Lily starts a happy new life with her real love.

Overall Rating

GOOD

Point of View

THIRD PERSON

Narrative Elements

Authors Writing Style: GOOD

Characterization: GOOD

Commerciality: EXCELLENT

Franchise Potential: FAIR

Pace: GOOD

Premise: GOOD

Structure: GOOD

Theme: GOOD

Accuracy of Book Profile

Yes, it does reflect the book.

Draw of Story

The mystery surrounding the character’s uncle's death.

Possible Drawbacks

The characterization of the Latin villain, which sounded a little stereotypical.

Use of Special Effects

THE STORY DOES NOT RELY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS

Primary Hook of Story

The murder mystery and the many twists contained in the narrative, as well as the central, well-resolved romance.

Fanbase Potential

Possibly, because it unites an interesting thriller with a love story.

Awards Potential

Probably only Awards turned to thrillers, since it is the main genre of the book.

Envisioned Budget

LOW BUDGET

Similar Films/TV Series

THE SERIES SHARP OBJECTS, THAT TELLS THE STORY OF A WOMAN WHO GOES BACK TO HER HOMETOWN TO COVER SOME MURDERS AS A JOURNALIST AND ALSO DEAL WITH UNRESOLVED ISSUES FROM HER PAST, AND THE MOVIE DARK PLACES, IN WHICH A WOMAN NEEDS TO REASSESS A TRAGIC EVENT FROM HER YOUTH.

What’s New About the Story

The whole context of the revelation about the protagonist's family and her parents' story, plagued by utter prejudice and racism. One of the things that could be improved is the relation between Lily's father and his mother. Even after she separated him from the love of his life and threatened to kill her, he does very little against her, even though he is then a very powerful man, in charge of the family's business.

Lead Characters

Lily is a very determined and strong woman, tormented by a past of suffering and losses, but who didn't let it bring her down. She maintained a platonic love for her childhood's boyfriend for years, that ended due to a terrible misunderstanding.

Uniqueness of Story

Not yet. The story lacks some nuance and sometimes is too filled with specific tropes of the romance and thriller genres. In order to improve in that matter, some of the dialogue could be polished, as well as the relationships between characters, which are sometimes a little predictable.

Possible Formats

Film - Streaming, Film - Studio, TV Series - Limited Run / Mini-Series

Analyst Recommendation

CONSIDER

Justification

The story is constantly interesting and easy to read, and the mystery that lasts until the very end is intriguing enough to captivate the reader. However, as I have pointed before, some changes could improve the story as a whole, such as trying to eliminate some clichés and everything involving Latin stereotypes related to the character of Santiago. The plotline about the protagonist's family would also benefit from a deeper treatment of the relationship between her father and his racist mother. Another possible issue is the fact that Lily's mother, who loved her daughter very much, didn't try to contact her at any time after leaving her. Even though she was being threatened not to do so, it seems just reasonable to think that she wouldn't be able to completely abandon her child that way.