Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Reader Appreciation - MEGA GIVEAWAY

Welcome to the Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, and Dystopian Reader Appreciation Giveaway!

We’re so glad you stopped by! 

In this giveaway, EVERYONE who enters will win TWENTY FREE – EXCLUSIVE – ebooks by the sponsoring authors (to be delivered at the conclusion of the giveaway), and one GRAND PRIZE winner will also receive a $1000 Amazon Gift Card! The Winner will be announced on February 1st at our Facebook Event. The winner will also receive an email directly.

There will ALSO be other prizes and giveaways happening at that event between now and our Grand Prize announcement! So make sure you mark yourself as attending so you don’t miss those great opportunities to win more prizes and snag more freebies!



Here are a couple of sneak peeks!

ETERNAL NIGHT, by Jade Kerrion 
Ashra’s hand trailed across Jaden’s muscled torso. He made it easy for her to be gentle. His body trembled as if he longed for her. His mouth was hungry for her kiss. He arched up against her, as if craving more. His need was like a living creature, wild and aching for her touch.

Eyes closed, Ashra shivered. Only one other person had desired her as much.

And he was dead.

She forced her way through the memories of pale bodies tangled upon cool silk sheets. When her soul-sucking power leeched out, it found no opposition. Images of the human’s life rewound in a blaze of vivid sights, sounds, and sensations.

Ashra looked up at Tera, her smile little more than a barely perceptible curve of her lips. “He fancies himself the protector of the child of prophecy. Was she among those taken tonight?”

Tera nodded.

Ashra chuckled, the sound without humor. “It’s a pity her genetic heritage wasn’t sufficiently superior to prevent her from being culled.”

“There’s more. Go deep.”

She pushed past the blackness at the start of his memories, expecting deeper darkness. Instead, the colors shifted into shades of ochre and gray. Memories, older than his body, resided in his soul; memories of an Earth long since lost to them—a planet surrounded and nourished by water; images of tall buildings glistening beneath a benevolent sun, and of thriving cities filled with the bustle of humans; memories of quiet and intimate conversations beneath a silver moon, the same silver moon that now graced Malum Turris with its light, though a thousand years older and viewed only from beneath the protection of the dome.

She saw herself as he must have seen her, a much-younger icrathari, still hopeful for the future, never realizing that the Earth they had all known and loved was irretrievably lost. Had she ever looked that vulnerable? Had her smile ever been so beautiful, so filled with love as she looked upon—

“Rohkeus?” Oh, blessed Creator, was that stricken whisper her voice?

Ashra pulled back and stared at the human. Her mouth dropped open. Her heart pounded in her chest, its beat erratic. It couldn’t be. It simply couldn’t be—

She looked up at Tera. The other icrathari nodded.

Rohkeus’s soul reborn…in a human.

Ashra threw her head back and laughed, a despairing sound. Her prince, her love, reduced to a human? Her slender fingers coiled into fists. Her golden eyes glittering, she pushed away from him, though her body trembled from the loss of his warmth. No, the human was not Rohkeus; he could never be Rohkeus.

Steeling herself against the gasp of pain that escaped from his lips as the anesthetizing effect of her kiss faded, Ashra rose to her feet with sinuous grace. “He is not one of us. Not anymore.” Nothing had been more devastating than losing Rohkeus to a human assassin. To see his soul reborn in that contemptible and weak race was an insult to the person Rohkeus had been.

“Should we turn him into a vampire?” Tera asked.

“Kill him. Set Rohkeus’s soul free.”


A Cross to Bear: A Gabriella Cross Paranormal Romance Book 1 

All around her, the sounds of baying wolves echoed in the night. Trees slapped her face as she ran, and she tripped more than once. She was crying now and mumbling to herself, terrified. She dared not look back, knowing that the wolves were pursuing her. She came out of the woods into a clearing leading to a tall hill. The howls came from all directions. Shadows flew through the woods in her peripheral vision, and Gabby cried out. She fell again, skinning her knee badly on a jagged rock. In her terrified state, she felt no pain, but continued as fast as she could and ran up the hill.

A snarl came from directly behind her, and she instinctively turned and cried out. A wolf was bearing down on her fast. She turned and raised a hand as the beast leapt at her with gleaming claws leading the way.

“NO!” Gabby cried.

To her amazement, the wolf changed form in mid-flight and turned into a naked man. He landed at her feet on all fours and snarled at her.

“Get away from me!” she screamed.

The naked man backed away from her warily, glancing down at his human hands with a look of confusion and shock. More wolves were coming out of the woods. They stopped when they saw the one who had turned into a human in the light of the full moon.

Gabby wasted no time considering her luck and ran as fast as she could up the hill.

“Gabriella Cross, stop!” Michael’s voice rose up over the howls.

Gabby could hardly see through her tears. She didn’t dare look back, knowing that she would find death closing in on her. She reached the top of the hill and ran across the flat expanse of rocky earth.

“Gabriella!” came the voice again.

The wolves were gaining on her.

She darted between two pines blocking her way, receiving many scrapes on her face and arms. Half blinded by tears and slapping branches, she stumbled out from between the trees and suddenly came to a steep cliff. She tried to stop, but her momentum was too great. With a terrified cry she fell forward over the cliff.

She frantically thrashed her arms as she fell to her death. Above, on the ledge, a mournful wolf cried out. The ground was coming up fast to crush her, and Gabby closed her eyes, not wanting to see her death.

Then. Suddenly. Gabriella was weightless.

Strong arms held her firmly. She opened her eyes to find a winged beast staring back at her.

Gabby passed out.



Tuesday, November 29, 2016

{Release Blitz + Giveaway} The Fighter and The Baroness - By Sunniva Dee


The Fighter and the Baroness- By
Sunniva Dee
Release Date: 11/29/2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Victor Arquette knows the meaning of sacrifice. Destined to legendary status in mixed martial arts, his life is founded on it. Dedication equals sacrifice, and sacrifice means around-the-clock training, no partying, no junk food, no alcohol—and no women.
Helena von Isenlohe is the heiress to Kyria Castle. Due to her father’s lack of financial prowess, the restoration of the ancient German estate rests on Helena’s shoulders. A failed attempt leaves a wealthy man alone at the altar—and the fleeing bride on a plane to the United States.
A chance meeting, and Victor and Helena’s chemistry is undeniable. Except, her presence clutters his focus. Victor shouldn’t crave their nights, shouldn’t be concerned where she is or with whom. And meanwhile in Germany, Kyria Castle deteriorates at a suspicious speed, indebting Helena further to the man she left behind.
Victor and Helena believe in duty. They embrace sacrifice. But when love strikes, it strikes hard, and sometimes you have to choose where your heart is truly at home.



My cheeks warm with embarrassment at the people waiting behind me. A female employee helps me unclasp the diamond bracelet and matching necklace. The crown though is impossible to get out of my princess ’do.
“Can I wear it through the security portal?” I ask, broken shoes in one hand.

“No, I’m sorry. It will buzz,” the security person explains. “The portal is created to alert us to most metals besides gold and silver.”

I can’t tell him I wear gold. Real, irreplaceable, century-old heirlooms. He wouldn’t believe me anyway. “If it’s okay with you, I’d like to try.”

He lifts his arms in subtle agreement, a have-it-your-way, and I enter the booth, walk out without incident. Employees from two checkpoints stare at me while I pick my stuff off the band. I shake my head, slowly at first, but then I have nothing to say, no witty comeback, and my flight instinct kicks in. I get up on my toes so I don’t stumble in the too-long skirt and stride as slowly as I can into the transit hall.

I need to not stress the hell out. Just, I wish someone was with me to talk me down. I could call Elfriede. I don’t have my phone. I need a new phone. God, how pathetic am I?

Once I’m sure security isn’t following, I haul butt down the corridor. Tiles are cold under bare feet, it turns out. I’d step into my shoes again, but one of them is broken. Would people stare less if I limped and my heels creak-clacked against the floor?

A high-end fashion store beams in the distance. “We’ll help you blend in. Hurry, hurry,” it calls. I run. Benches are in the way. I’m getting clumsy. I’m panicking. Suddenly, a potted palm tree appears out of nowhere, half-blocking my view of the Promised Land, and my torso doubles around it as I slam to the ground.

I let out an ungraceful oomph. And realize I’m not on the ground after all. No, there’s an arm around me, and miraculously I’m on my feet, wobbly but sort of erect.

“You all right?” an American accent asks.

“I was going to Cloe’s over there,” I explain in German, pointing feebly and not feeling as regal as I’ve been taught. Dark eyebrows contract from within a tanned face above me.

“Sorry?” His arm is still strong around me, really freaking strong, and somehow I’ve got a death grip around it while trying to pry him off.

I translate the same stupid sentence to English. “I was going to Cloe’s. It’s over there.”

His brows are perfectly thick or thin and their arcs are so perfectly perfect they look like they’ve been combed, but then the furrow between them smoothens and I discover his eyes.





About the Author

Between studies, teaching, and advising, Sunniva has spent her entire adult life in a college environment. Most of her novels are new adult romance geared toward smart, passionate readers with a love for eclectic language and engaging their brain as well as their heart while reading.
Born in the Land of the Midnight Sun, the author spent her early twenties making the world her playground. Southern Europe: Spain, Italy, Greece--Argentina: Buenos Aires, in particular. The United States finally kept her interest, and after half a decade in Los Angeles, she now lounges in the beautiful city of Savannah.
Sometimes, Sunniva writes with a paranormal twist (Shattering Halos, Stargazer, and Cat Love). At other times, it's contemporary (Pandora Wild Child, Leon's Way, Adrenaline Crush, Walking Heartbreak, and Dodging Trains, coming in late March 2016).
This author is the happiest when her characters let their emotions run off with them, shaping her stories in ways she never foresaw. She loves bad-boys and good-boys run amok, and like in real life, her goal is to keep the reader on her toes until the end of each story.


$25 Amazon gift card

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Monday, November 28, 2016

{Book Blitz} Air - By L.B. Gilbert


Air - By L.B. Gilbert
(The Elementals #2)
Release Date: 11/28/2016
Genres: Fantasy, New Adult, Paranormal

Despite being the junior Elemental, Logan’s never had to worry about failing a mission before. Not until an overgrown and annoyingly attractive shifter comes along.
Being an Elemental is in Logan’s blood. Hers is the gift of Air, a vast power she’s still struggling to control. Then a Were named Connell hunts her down. His wolf is missing, and he blames her.
A den of werewolves is the last place Logan wants to be. The testosterone alone is enough to make her choke. But she has a mystery to solve. She will find out who is stealing wolves even if kills her.
Unfortunately, that’s exactly what the enemy has planned…

Book 1: Fire
Book 2: Air, Available November 28th
Book 3: Water, Coming Soon

Connell tried to drag the Elemental toward him, but she didn’t budge. Instead, she glanced at his hands. For a second, he could have sworn amusement flashed across her face. Then she was gone—wind whipping him in the face so hard it stung.


He turned around in a circle, scanning the air and the land around him. God, he couldn’t lose her now. He needed to get his wolf back. Not having the extra other in his head was tearing him apart. The empty space inside him was like a crawling emptiness. Sometimes, it was in his head. Other times, it was in his heart.

I can’t believe I lost her. He’d had her in his hands, and then poof. At this
point, she could be anywhere. A strangled sigh escaped from deep in his chest. It sounded pathetic and broken, even to him. He checked the house to make sure she wasn’t there, and then he walked back out to his rented jeep. Damn it, he was going to have to start tracking her all over again.

“Hey, what’s your name?”

Stunned, Connell tripped. Pivoting on his heel, he turned to see the sprite standing on a huge boulder in the distance. He was so damn surprised to see her that he lost his tongue. He just stared at her like an idiot.

Apparently, she agreed. “I can’t keep calling you tall, dark, and stupid, now can I? 
Whatisyourname?” she repeated, over- enunciating each word.

He was too relieved to get upset over the fact she was talking to him as if he were slow. “Connell Maitland.”

The imp turned away and started addressing the air around her, “He says he’s one of the Maitlands. American accent, so one of the Colorado ones. Yeah. It’s severe. I haven’t seen anything like it. It’s like his wolf was torn out of him somehow. He thinks we did it. Hold on a sec—” Her words broke off as Connell started to run toward her.

A gust of strong air slammed him down to the ground before he cleared the rise.

“Stay there,” the sprite ordered in a glacial tone.

Frigid as the wind, he thought as he regained his footing. Hell, everything about her should be ice-cold. Instead, he felt like he was burning up around her. It was disconcerting. So was the hard edge in her voice. That kind of steel shouldn’t be coming out of such a tiny, doll-like girl.
“Yeah, yeah. It’s fine. He’s on a leash,” the imp said a touch smugly.

Connell growled low in his throat. At least that hadn’t changed. Prey the world over would still react instinctively in fear at that sound.

But the imp didn’t even blink. And she had heard him. She just hadn’t cared. She kept on talking like some gossipy housewife on the phone. Except she was addressing no one.

“Who the bloody hell are you talking to? Invisible fairies? Can anyone even hear you?” he asked incredulously.


About the Author

USA Today bestselling author L.B. Gilbert spent years getting degrees from the most prestigious universities in America, including a PhD that she is not using at all. She moved to France for work and found love. She's married now and living in Toulouse with one adorable half-french baby.
She has always enjoyed reading books as far from her reality as possible but eventually the voices in her head told her to write her own. And so far the voices are enjoying them. You can check out the geeky things she likes on twitter @elementalauthor, facebook, or
*If you like a little more steam with your Fire, check out the author's Lucy Leroux titles*


2x $25 Starbucks Gift card or Paypal cash

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Thursday, November 24, 2016

{Book Blast + Giveaway} The Surrendered - By Case Maynard

Hello readers!
Are you looking for your next read?
Well, let us help make things easier for you!
Welcome to the Book Blast for
The Surrendered by Case Maynard
presented by Blaze Publishing!
Be sure to enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Looking for more books to read? Read on and find a book that’s waiting for you to devour!

After a financial collapse devastates the United States, the new government imposes a tax on the nation’s most valuable resource—the children.
Surrendered at age ten—after her parents could no longer afford her exorbitant fees—Vee Delancourt has spent six hard years at the Mills, alongside her twin, Oliver. With just a year to freedom, they do what they can to stay off the Master’s radar. But when Vee discovers unspeakable things happening to the younger girls in service, she has no choice but to take a stand—a decision that lands her on the run and outside the fence for the first time since the System robbed her of her liberty.
Vee knows the Master will stop at nothing to prove he holds ultimate authority over the Surrendered. But when he makes a threat that goes beyond what even she considers possible, she accepts the aid of an unlikely group of allies. Problem is, with opposing factions gunning for the one thing that might save them all, Vee must find a way to turn oppression and desperation into hope and determination—or risk failing all the children and the brother she left behind.
add to goodreads

The Surrendered - By Case Maynard
 Publication Date:  September 20, 2016 
Publisher:  Blaze Publishing

"a story that grabs you by the throat in the first chapter and refuses to let go" - H.E. Edgmon
"full of action, a fast read and really hard to put away." - Nadja, Fit & Beautiful Heart Reads
"strong heroine, with exceptional supporting characters, add in a non nauseating romance, and this book has it all." - Leah, Leah's Bookish Obsession
With over 20 years’ experience in the legal and medical fields, Case Maynard decided to trade in her briefs and reports to write the stories that have been floating around in her head since childhood. She lives with her two teenagers and husband in South Georgia, while maintaining a long-distance liaison with her oldest daughter and partner in crime in Alaska. When not writing, she enjoys reading as often as possible, binge watching anything good on Netflix, and all things NCAA football (Go Noles!). You can learn more about Case and her stories on her website.

Asleep EBook (1)
Seventeen-year-old Rose suffers from terrifying, painful nightmares that leave her bruised, exhausted, and questioning her sanity. Desperate to hold on, she makes a choice: Trust her doctor who claims he can cure her, or listen to another patient who swears the asylum will kill them.
add to goodreads

Asleep - By Krystal Wade 
Publication Date: February 16, 2016 
Publisher:  Blaze Publishing

Because I Love You
When Sixteen-year-old Andie Hamilton discovers she’s pregnant, she also learns the truth of her adoption. Overwhelmed, Andie must choose what’s best for the baby, but after hearing the heartbeat for the first time, she doesn’t know how she’ll ever be able let go.
add to goodreads

Because I Love You - By Tori Rigby 
Release Date: May 17, 2016 
Publisher: Blaze Publishing

Crescenzo never would’ve thought his father’s figurines were modeled after real people, but when his loved ones start vanishing from his life, he must unite their real life counterparts and seek their aid to save his family.
add to goodreads

The Carver -  By Jacob Devlin Publication 
Date: July 19, 2016 
Publisher: Blaze Publishing

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

{Book Blitz + Giveaway} Home - By Eleni McKnight

Hello Readers!  Welcome to the Book Blitz for
Home by Eleni McKnight!
Celebrate this release by entering the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Happy Release Week, Eleni!

Knowledge is a dangerous commodity in the Home commune, the last beacon of civilization against the fallen outside world. As Suzannah Commons begins to secretly read forbidden books, she jeopardizes her future for the forbidden love of the boy who supplies her new, dangerous habit, Silas Maars, and his family. Will her new-found knowledge be her destruction?
Suzannah is in training with the rest of the unmarried teenage girls in the Handmaiden House and Home’s laundry to become a bride when she accidentally comes upon a naked boy in one of the family quarters, Silas Maars. To see a naked man before marriage is an unforgivable sin in Home and a challenge to her precious status as a virgin, her only aspect of worth. This compromise to her purity would earn her an automatic exile in the Hard Labor Camp, a death sentence until the commune leader, Parson, sentences her to the punishment of serving Silas and his unusual family as a housekeeper. As she works for the Maars family and is isolated from the rest of the commune’s population, she discovers the frightening, threatening outside world is not as dangerous as she has been led to believe. The Maars family reveals to her that Deacon controls the population of Home by keeping them all ignorant, denying them education and books so he can teach his own twisted, corrupt, self-serving version of religion from the pulpit. As she learns the truth and begins to fall into a star-crossed love with Silas, her fate as a childbride to one of the lecherous Elders or a worker in the hard labor camp is drawing nigh.
Published: WordCrafts Press, LLC. 
Publication Date: November 22, 2016

Available for Purchase: AMAZON 


  As I gathered Silas and Noah’s laundry, I heard a click behind me. I whirled around to see Silas standing there with a satchel in hand the door shut.

“Silas, no! Open the door!” I cried.

“I’m not going to do anything,” Silas said. “Except give you this.” He reached into the satchel and produced a book entitled Jane Eyre. “Well, not give it to you, but Papa can read this next. It’s one of Mother’s favorites.”

“What’s it about?”

“A girl who grows up to be equal with her husband,” he said.

“Like your mother?” I whispered.

He nodded.

“It’s kind of… dangerous then, isn’t it?”

He nodded again. “Yeah. This is one of the books that Deacon doesn’t want everybody knowing about. I borrowed another book.” He got out another book and showed it to me. I opened it to see the handwriting in it. It was hand-made. “It’s a book by a Deacon from years past.”

Eleni McKnight is a Murfreesboro, Tennessee native and graduated from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville with a degree in Theatre with an emphasis in Literature. This left her with a wild passion for creating costumes and doing make-up in her freetime, along with her intense passion for reading from her childhood. She started writing at age eight when she had read all the Baby-Sitter's Club books she had brought along for a road trip at age nine, and wanted something new to read. It's never quite left her over the years.
These days, you can usually find her working backstage or costuming in local community theatres, reading a book, walking/exercising, at a concert, drinking a craft beer with friends, knitting, embroidering, or taking a dance class.

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{Book Blitz + Giveaway} Catalyst - By Kristin Smith



Catalyst  - By Kristin Smith
(The Deception Game, #1)
Published By: Clean Teen Publishing
Release Date: 11/21/2016
Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult

Too pretty.
Too smart.
Too perfect.
In a crumbling, futuristic Las Vegas where the wealthy choose the characteristics of their children like ordering off a drive-thru menu, seventeen-year-old Sienna Preston doesn’t fit in. As a normal girl surrounded by genetically modified teenagers, all of her imperfections are on display. But after the death of her father, everything she’s ever known and loved changes in an instant.
With little skills to help provide for her family, Sienna clings to the two things that come easily—lying and stealing. But not all thief-for-hire assignments go as planned. When a covert exchange of a stolen computer chip is intercepted, she becomes entangled with a corrupt government official who uses her thieving past as leverage, her mother as collateral, and the genetically modified poster boy she’s falling for as bait.
In order to rescue her mother, there may only be one option—joining forces with the Fringe, an extremist group, and their young leader who’s too hot to be bad. Problem is, these revolutionaries aren’t what they seem, and the secrets they’re hiding could be more dangerous than Sienna is prepared for. In the end, she must be willing to risk everything to save the one thing that matters most.
Catalyst is a thrilling adventure of danger, romance, intrigue, and deception.



“You need to learn a little hand-to-hand combat.” Trey puts his fists up by his face. “Always protect your soft spots—your face being numero uno.” He glances at my bandaged arm. “You right-handed?”

It’s after breakfast and we’re in the training facility, a large, gym-type room with thick mats, punching bags, weights, and a long wall of mirrors. The smell of sweat and stinky feet assault my nose as I stand across from him on the pile of black mats used to create a “ring”. We have the gym to ourselves. Most likely because everyone else is too smart to work out right after a meal.

I nod and flex my right hand, the one that’s not bandaged.

“You should be fine, then. I’ll take it easy on you.” He grins. “Go ahead—hit me.”

I take a step back and shake my head. “I’m not gonna hit you.”

He moves forward to decrease the distance between us. “I said, hit me.”

I raise my arms as if I’m about to fight him, but all I can think is how much he’s done to help me. How can I punch the man who saved me from the government facility, removed my tracker, and is willing to help rescue my mother?

When he realizes I won’t fight, he lowers his hands. “Remember, Sienna, these men don’t care that you’re a girl. They don’t care how old you are. If given the opportunity, they will hurt you.” His eyes harden. “Now hit me.”

I punch him as hard as I can, and he’s not expecting it. The force of the blow to his face knocks him backward, and my hand throbs from the impact. He looks stunned, especially when a trickle of blood makes its way out of his nose. But then he grins.

Wiping his nose on his shirt, he motions with his hands for me to come closer. “Nicely done. Now, hit me again.”

Surely, he must be crazy. I’m about to walk away, but his words echo in my mind. If given the opportunity, they will hurt you. I can’t give them that opportunity.



About the Author

Kristin Smith writes young adult contemporary and science fiction novels. When she’s not writing, you can find her dreaming about the beach, beating her boys at Just Dance, or belting out karaoke (from the comfort of her own home). Kristin currently resides in the middle-of-nowhere North Carolina with her husband and five incredibly loud but extremely cute boys. To read more about her obsession with YA novels or her addiction to chocolate, you can visit her at




Tuesday, November 22, 2016

{Book Blitz: Chapter Reading + Giveaway} Shadow Fall - Audrey Grey


Shadow Fall - By Audrey Grey
(Shadow Fall, #1)
Published By: Blaze Publishing
Release Date: November 22nd 2016
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

The asteroid hurtling toward the earth will kill billions.
The Emperor and his Gold Court will be safe in their space station, watching from the stars. The Silvers will be protected underground. But the Bronzes must fight it out at the Shadow Trials for the few remaining spots left on the space station.
When an enigmatic benefactor hands Maia Graystone a spot in the Trials, she won’t just get a chance at salvation for her and her baby brother, Max: She gets to confront the mother who abandoned her in prison, the mad Emperor who murdered her father, and the Gold prince who once loved her.
But it’s the dark bastard prince she’s partnered with that will make her question everything, including her own heart. With the asteroid racing closer every day, Maia must trust someone to survive.
The question is who?

You can get your copy now for the special release price of 99 cents, and be sure to meet us at the Facebook Party happening right now!



My legs wobble as I step into the now lukewarm water. I sink to the bottom. Tiny bubbles escape my nose as I watch all the ugly remnants from the last seven years leave my body.
Lungs burning, I rise and come face-to-face with Pit Boy.
I glare at him. “You really have to work on the knocking thing.”
Despite the fact that I’m indecent, his attention never falls from my face. I almost wish it would, just to give me a break from the intensity of his focus.
“I only get a few more hours to be the ‘one-eyed freak’ from the pit. Might as well take advantage.” He doesn’t dare crack a smile, so it’s hard to tell if he’s joking or serious.
“Don’t worry. In my heart, that’s exactly who you’ll always be.”
His words remind me that soon we’ll be reconstructed using forbidden nanotech. But it won’t just be our flesh they’ll reengineer. It will be our brains, too.
I don’t foresee my rewiring being too complicated, but Riser needs to upload almost twenty years of false memories. That will be tricky and time-consuming.
And time is the one thing we don’t have.
Riser flicks his gaze to the mirror. He lifts a hand, touches the patch of mottled flesh where his eye should be.
“How did it happen?” I ask.
“Careful, my lady.” His gaze settles on my face. “You’re beginning to sound like you care.”
I roll my eyes. “And I thought I was lacking in conversational skills.”
He focuses his attention on the graffiti sprayed across the mirror.
“It’s written language,” I blurt, even though all I want to do is end the conversation so Pit Boy can leave. His presence unnerves me more than the other Pit Leeches ever could. “It’s how we communicate.”
“I know what it is.” He examines his jagged thumbnail. “I just . . . can’t read it.”
“It’s just stuff about the Chosen. You know, insults.” The populace is finicky. As much as they love watching the Chosen with their petty intrigues and court life, they would be just as happy to see their heads on a pike.
Time to explain what you are, Everly, Nicolai’s voice grates inside my head. Riser’s eyes flutter just enough that I know he’s heard Nicolai’s voice too.
You do it, I think, watching Riser’s reaction. But his face remains emotionless; either he’s a good actor or only Nicolai can hear my response.
“The Royalist astronomers discovered the asteroid twenty-one years ago,” I begin. “It’s actually a slow moving planet called an earth-crosser, meaning its orbit and ours intersect every twenty-thousand years. Usually it’s too far away to affect us, but this time it will pass close enough to wreak havoc and make the earth uninhabitable for years.” I stir the water with my big toe. “Before I was born, the Emperor decided that creating a population of genetically superior humans would be a great idea, you know, just in case the Caskets don’t work or the asteroid does more damage than predicted.”
Riser’s hyper-focused gaze bores through me. “You’re one of them?”
“Yes.” I run my hand through the filthy water. “But my father’s a Bronze, so even though my mother comes from a Gold House, the Emperor only allowed them one Chosen instead of the customary twins. So it’s just me . . . not Max.”
“What makes being Chosen so special?”
“I don’t know . . .” I bite my lip, trying to remember everything my parents told me. “My genes are perfect, I guess.”
For some reason, talking about my body makes me remember that I am naked in a room with a boy. As if reading my mind, Riser slowly lets his gaze fall, his expression both curious and unapologetic as he takes me all in, his thoughts cryptic.
“What are you staring at?” I blurt, smashing my breasts beneath my hands. Not like there’s much there to cover. “Haven’t you seen a naked girl before?”
A smile twitches his lips. “Not one that’s genetically flawless.
“It doesn’t work that way! You can’t just look at us and tell. We look like everyone else—”
“No.” Riser shakes his head, a dark swath of hair covering his damaged eye. “You don’t. Whatever you are.”
“You must be happy . . . about our reconstruction, I mean,” I mumble, trying desperately to change the subject. “They’ll fix your eye . . . and . . . and all those horrible scars.”
I freeze as he slides off the counter, unable to look away as he hooks one finger beneath his shirt and lifts.
Scars ravage his anemic body in varying shades of red and silver and white. Some deep and pitted like the craters of a far-away planet, others smooth and neat. One particular nasty scar carves down his shoulder, tunneling across his chest and stomach. A fresh red wound nestles just below his throat.
He carefully touches the long ugly one. “I’m not ashamed for surviving.”


About the Author

Audrey Grey lives in the charming state of Oklahoma, with her husband, two little people, and four mischievous dogs. You can usually find her hiding out in her office from said little people and dogs, surrounded by books and sipping kombucha while dreaming up wondrous worlds for her characters to live in.




Friday, November 18, 2016

{Book Blitz + Giveaway} Weariland - By Mary Shotwell


Weariland - By Mary Shotwell
Merge Publishing
Release Date: 5/10/2016
Genre: YA

For fifteen-year-old Lason Davies, it all started with a text.


The last words of her murdered grandmother haunt Lason as she travels to England with her sheltering mother for the funeral. The crime is a sensation, but the clamoring reporters and news photographers aren’t the only ones interested in their arrival.

As her mother’s behavior borders on erratic (on a good day), Lason encounters a stranger from Weariland, a dreary world once known as Wonderland. He petitions Lason’s help in finding a secret family heirloom, a key to saving his land—and to Lason’s past. Lason is swept in an adventure through Weariland’s unpredictable realm, encountering colorful, fantastical characters and discovering her family’s elusive history. But if she isn’t careful, she may never return…

Buy Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble   


Book Trailer


About the Author

Mary grew up in northeast Ohio, so it was only natural for her to pursue a degree in marine biology. After studying dolphin behavior and estimating great white shark populations, she earned her Ph.D. in Biostatistics in Charleston, South Carolina. It was there, during the arduous dissertation process, where she had the idea to write a book.

With Alice and the crazy characters from Wonderland staring her down from her bedroom poster, Mary envisioned what that fantasy realm would look like in current day. Creative writing served as a natural escape from technical writing, wedding planning, pregnancy, and job hunting.

Mary is excited to debut Weariland (Merge Publishing, 2016), a novel introducing Lason Davies, a teenager who learns about her family's past in a world once called Wonderland. She currently resides in Tennessee with her husband and three children.

Author Links



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