“Will you accept my gift, Alannah?”
Alannah Brynne is a Touchstone, a being who endures the burden of raw human emotions gifted to her by the Gatherers. Her only solace lies in her Winnowing, a release from the torment of feelings she bears.
Her devotion to Eamon, a Light Gatherer, cannot overcome her distrust of his kind, nor dispel the bitter loneliness she feels.
One day she meets a human in Central Park, where she went to be alone. Instead, he draws her picture as a Sleeping Beauty, surrounded by thorns . . .
Enticed by a chance to masquerade as a human and liberate herself from her own sense of fate, Alannah develops a secret relationship with the young artist, Liam Griffin. Yet as they grow closer and she realizes Liam is falling for her, she feels torn by her deceptions to him, as well as by her own lingering love for Eamon.
“I’ve never been a child. Or if I was, I don’t remember.” – Alannah
“A choice? You don’t and you do, and one supercedes the other.” – Aurora
“When Pandora began opening boxes, she was never able to put back or change what arose from them.” – Eamon
“Sometimes it feels like the pages were never really blank after all, that the picture I see lies only veiled beneath the surface, and I’m finding a way to uncover it.” – Liam
“It’s such an odd pairing, you and Eamon. A Touchstone and a Gatherer. It isn’t the same, and you can never replace what he lost.” – Ciara