One mistake can steal your innocence. One promise can plague a friendship. One secret can tear apart a family.

Sissie Klein barely remembers the night that tore her from the carefree life she knew. Not long after the shocked teen is pushed into marriage, she’s rushed to the hospital where a catastrophic delivery seals her destiny.

Sissie is determined to give her daughter the opportunities she forfeited, but some fates can’t be avoided. Tragedy strikes, leaving behind a legacy of deceit—and an orphaned toddler.

Told with heartbreaking honesty and shrewd humor, Sissie Klein Is Completely Normal examines the ties that bind us—some inherited, others chosen—none without their share of agonizing tangles.

Series:

Enchanted Rock

Book 2

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Sissie Klein Is Completely Normal
By Kris Clink

Excerpt: Sissie Klein Is Completely Normal

Coming this week from author Kris Clink is SISSIE KLEIN IS COMPLETELY NORMAL — an intimate and heartfelt story about second chances after life upends everything you’ve planned for. I’m thrilled to share an excerpt below!

 

Junior prom, term papers, and summer plans distracted us from discussing our time in San Marcos. In a few short weeks, Della and I would fall into our summer routine, sneaking in afternoons floating down the river beneath towering live oaks and cottonwoods along our little slice of heaven in the Texas Hill Country.

Della worked at her parent’s realty office every summer, and I locked in a job this year, too, teaching tennis lessons to bored kids at the country club three mornings a week. Not exactly riveting, but it satisfied my parents’ wishes for me to earn my own money.

The week before finals, Della and I caught the same spring cold. Della bounced back quickly, but it did a number on me. Breathing was torture. My head pounded and I couldn’t keep food down. Our family doctor put me in the hospital for dehydration. They slid me into a CAT scan machine and must’ve stuck me a dozen times.

A day of IV fluids brought me back to life, but the hospital drove my parents a little crazy. The nurse said they’d discharge me after the doctor made rounds. Until then, my dad paced my room like a Great Dane in a kennel.

Don’t judge me, but I’d always seen my parents as dogs. Dad was a Dane, with his deep voice, imposing height, and haunting eyes. Flitting around him was a well-groomed Bichon Frise known as “Mom.”

My brother, Brent, had won the genetic lottery and absorbed their good looks, smarts, and charisma—like a stately Weimaraner with gray eyes that drilled clean through you. When my turn came, Mother Nature overcorrected for her generosity and produced a mutt. Woof!

If Dr. Marlowe didn’t arrive soon, someone was going to get bit.

 

Hours later, I was sitting crisscross applesauce, staring a hole through my English notebook when Dr. Marlowe finally moseyed into my room.

“Thomas,” he said, meeting my dad’s gaze. “I’ve got some news.” A darkness had taken over his usually cheerful face.

I thought I was better. Oh, God. It’s serious. Am I dying?

Dad raised one of his caterpillar eyebrows. Neither man looked at me.

Mom shined her trademark welcome-to-my-cocktail-party grin at the doctor before directing her optimistic spotlight on me. “I’m sure everything is normal.”

My eyes returned to my trusted doctor. His had been a familiar face throughout my life. Whether I saw him for immunizations or spells of tonsillitis, he maintained a jovial tone and a smile. Today, his kind eyes looked older and his gray hair more disheveled than I remembered.

He confused me with his “we need to talk” tone and deflated expression. He inched to the edge of my bed and ran a nervous hand over the back of his neck. His eyes flitted around the room before meeting mine. “Sissie, you’re pregnant.”

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