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Dancing on Rocks

Rose Senehi

K.I.M. Publications
$15.95 paperback
6 x 9
260 pages
June 3, 2014

Simmering beneath the skin and hiding around every corner are a family’s painful memories of a child who disappeared in the middle of the night 30 years ago.

Following her mother’s motorcycle accident, Georgie Haydock returns to the mountain tourist town at the foot of Chimney Rock State Park. But the summer is full of turmoil. As Georgie tries to perform her nursing duties, her mother thrashes in her bed, insisting that the strange woman stalking her store downstairs is Georgie’s missing sister. Meanwhile, Georgie aches to reunite with her childhood sweetheart, but she’s too ashamed of the guilt that drove her away 15 years earlier. For his part, Ron Elliott, the state park’s naturalist, doesn’t care what Georgie did all those years back. She’s the one creature he’s always yearned to possess.

Dancing on Rocks weaves through the network of memories, secrets, and mutual dependencies holding together Chimney Rock, an isolated community of 112 people tucked into Hickory Nut Gorge. Thousands of visitors stream through the tourist destination every week. But in reality, the people in the town have only each other.


“Spooky strangers spying on the town, mysterious disappearances of long ago, buried treasure—maybe it is inevitable that a story set in the presence of one of the most famous crags in America would be a cliffhanger. And Dancing on Rocks is certainly that. But it is also a telling study of individuals, families, and local history. Rose Senehi has written a complex but entertaining story.”  —Fred Chappell, North Carolina poet laureate emeritus and author of Ancestors and Others and Look Back All the Green Valley