Saving Phoebe Murrow by Herta Feely {Excerpt w/ Review} @hertafeely @sarahminiaci @UpperHandBooks



Saving Phoebe Murrow 
by Herta Feely 
Published: September 2, 2016
Publisher: Upper Hand Press

A timeless story of mothers and daughters with a razor-sharp 21st century twist, this heart-wrenching debut for fans of Kimberly McCreight (Reconstructing Amelia) and Liane Moriarity (Big Little Lies) will make you question how you and your family spend time online.

Aacclaimed writer and longtime children’s activist Herta Feely introduces readers to Isabel Murrow: a suburban mother precariously balancing her busy career as a D.C. lawyer and her family, who she would do anything to protect. In a world of bullies and temptations, all Isabel wants is to keep her thirteen-year-old daughter, Phoebe, safe. But with her hectic schedule, Isabel fails to recognize another mother’s mounting fury and the danger her daughter faces by flirting with a mysterious boy online. A cyber-bulling incident aimed at Phoebe, with horrific consequences, finally pushes Isabel to the edge.

Saving Phoebe Murrow is available in paperback and e-book formats via all online and select brick-and-mortar book retailers. Get your copy today on Amazon.




This riveting and thought provoking read had me glued from beginning to end as I wanted to know what would happen next throughout the entire story. My heart went out to Phoebe who is the victim of cyber-bullying and final reaches her breaking point and also for her parents. The author's gift for story telling is evident through this read as she weaves a web full of intrigue and thrilling suspense and her characters seemed so real that I felt like I knew them personally. I felt a range of emotions while reading this and I recommend this to one and all. This is a MUST read for 2016.




{I received an ARC via the publisher. I made no guarantee of a favorable review and the opinions expressed here are unbiased and my own.}


Isabel decided the time had come to go home. She strolled with Jane into another room before circling back to collect her husband.


At once Sandy saw Isabel stride toward them. She felt Ron tense up and scoot further away from her. In the next instant, Isabel was hovering over them.

“We were just talking about you,” Sandy said, looking at her with faux innocence.

“Oh, really?” Isabel’s lips pressed into a tight smile.

Sandy watched a series of emotions ripple across Isabel’s face and imagined she was dying to know what had been said.

“Hate to break this up, but we need to get going, Ron,” Isabel said, her gaze fixed on him. She drew in a deep breath.

Before Ron could answer, Sandy’s laughter curled into the air. “Oh, Isabel, the fun’s just starting.”

“That may be, but the fun will just have to go on without us.”

Ron looked at her awkwardly.

Isabel’s jaw tightened. “Phoebe is expecting us.”

“She’s a big girl,” Sandy interjected. “She can wait a little, can’t she?”

“No. She can’t. I promised.” Her words were clipped. “Anyway, I don’t know about the two of you, but I had a long day at the office. I’m beat.” She stared at Sandy.

Drawing her legs out from under her, Sandy slid off the couch and stood up. “Well, all right then,” she said, a smile reaching across her face. “Nice talking to you, Ron. Murphy.” She threw him a tantalizing grin. “And you too, Isabel.” She gazed about the room, pretending to be undecided about where to go next.

Ron continued to sit on the sofa as Isabel made an about-face and left.

Sandy watched her go as Ron levered himself off the couch. Sandy couldn’t resist. She gave him a peck on the cheek, leaving behind a scarlet stain, and with a rueful smile she wished him luck. You’ll need it, she thought, wondering how Isabel had landed such a catch. Those tousled looks of his reminded her of the Kennedys; he had their boyish enthusiasm and a certain familiar charm too.

As her eyes followed the movement of his tight ass, she thought she might hear from old Ron again. She wasn’t sure he’d noticed, but she’d tucked her business card into his pocket.

∙ ● ∙ ● ∙ ● ∙

Isabel glanced over her shoulder to make sure Ron was coming. She knew she was hopeless at masking her feelings in situations like this. But then why should she? She shot a final icy stare at Sandy. How old was she when she’d had Jessie anyway? She barely looked over 30. A high school pregnancy, maybe? The woman had social climber written all over her. All those pies she was forever dropping off at people’s homes the minute they sniffled. No one really joked about it, but they smiled, as if tolerating a child.

The image, though, that crept into Isabel’s mind was of ivy sucking the life out of sturdy oaks. No, she didn’t trust Sandy. Not for a minute. And what the hell was that Murphy thing all about?





Herta Feely is a writer, full-time editor, and the co-founder of Safe Kids Worldwide. Her short stories and memoir have been published in anthologies and literary journals, including The Sun, Lullwater Review, The Griffin, Provincetown Arts, and Big Muddy. In the wake of the James Frey scandal, Feely edited and published the anthology, Confessions: Fact or Fiction? Awarded the James Jones First Novel Fellowship and an Artist in Literature Fellowship from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities for The Trials of Serra Blue, she has also received an award from American Independent Writers for best published personal essay for a piece on immigration. Feely is a graduate of UC Berkeley and Johns Hopkins University. She has two grown sons and lives in Washington, DC, with her husband and cats. 



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