Swear on This Life
Imagine opening a book and discovering that someone else has written your life story.
When a buzzy debut novel from mysterious author J. Colby becomes the literary event of the year, Emiline reads it reluctantly. As an introductory-level writing instructor at UC San Diego with her own stalled writing career and a bumpy long-term relationship, the last thing Emiline wants to do is celebrate the accomplishments of a young and gifted writer.
Yet from the very first page, Emiline is entranced by the story of Emerson and Jackson, two neighborhood friends growing up in rural Ohio, struggling with abusive parents and dreaming of a better life beyond the long dirt road that winds through their impoverished town.
That’s because the novel is patterned on her own dark and desperate childhood. She soon realizes that “J. Colby” is Jase, the best friend and first love she hasn’t seen in over a decade, but that doesn’t explain why he wrote their painful story through her eyes instead of his own-and why he chose to take some dramatic creative liberties with the ending.
The only way she’ll know for sure is to find “J. Colby,” but is she strong enough to handle the truth behind his fiction?