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Book Blitz – Teaser + Giveaway – SKIN HUNTER (Skin Hunter Series) by Tania Hutley

SKIN HUNTER Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for SKIN HUNTER, the first book in the young new adult dystopian science fiction series, Skin Hunter, by USA Today bestselling author Tania Hutley.  See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive teaser, and details on her giveaway.

SKIN HUNTER (Skin Hunter #1) by Tania Hutley

SKIN HUNTER (Skin Hunter #1) by Tania Hutley

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: SKIN HUNTER
Series: Skin Hunter #1
Author: Tania Hutley
Release Date: June 18, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian Science Fiction
Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
She didn’t want to do it… But she was desperate.

Trying to escape the dangerous streets of Old Triton, the buried city, Milla takes the ultimate risk. Could a dead girl’s identity be her way out? A ticket to a richer, brighter world high above the muck and gloom of her old life?

Now she’s part of a high tech contest, with a prize beyond money, fame and everything she has ever known. A chance to become something… new. But if anyone finds out who Milla really is, she’s dead.

The other competitors come from privilege, their faces and bodies tweaked to perfection. Rich and handsome Cale could be the most dangerous of all. Why is he so interested in a scarred, ugly “sinker” like Milla?

To survive, she needs to be brave. To win, she needs to evolve.

Just try and stop her.

Skin Hunter is an upper YA science fiction novel – a futuristic, dystopian thrill-ride with a spark of romance.

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SKIN HUNTER Teaser

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SKIN HUNTER Teaser

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Author Tania Hutley

Author Tania Hutley

About the Author
Tania Hutley is a USA Today bestselling author who loves sci fi movies and wishes she lived in the Whedon-verse.

Tania also writes sexy contemporary romance using a top-secret pen name. She could tell you what that pen name is, but then she’d have to turn you into a chicken.

 

 

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Where to Find Tania Hutley
Goodreads | WebsiteFacebook 

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – CRUSH (Sea Crest High Series) by Carrie Banks

CRUSH Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for CRUSH, the first book in the young adult contemporary romance series, Sea Crest High, by Carrie Banks.  See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive teaser, and details on her giveaway.

CRUSH (Sea Crest High Series #1) by Carrie Banks

CRUSH (Sea Crest High Series #1) by Carrie Banks

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: CRUSH
Series: Sea Crest High #1
Author: Carrie Banks
Release Date: June 18, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Ry…
My world was black. I was living bottle to bottle. Only waking up for a new one. I was burning through girls. Loving them and leaving them. I swore that I’d never love again. The pain of losing it was too much. I was shutting that shit down. But then one summer night, I saw her standing there on the beach. The last rays of the sun glinted off her hair. Her shy smile captured me. She stole the heart I thought was dead.

And there wasn’t a damn thing I could do, but let her take it and run.

Tess…
Sea Crest is a popular tourist town, but to me it’s just home. I’m an average girl who rarely strays from the middle of the road. But then… we collided. Me the local good girl and him… the damaged, mysterious new bad boy in town. My friends told me to stay away. My gut told me to run. But my heart’s a traitor that burned for him.

This is more than a summer crush… this could be everything. But in this seaside town, image is the name of the game. Either you are in or you’re out. The local good girl catching the eye of the hottest bad-boy who ever graced the halls of Pine Point Academy won’t go over well. Time to up my game and fight for what I want.

But by summer’s end, will I be the one left crushed?

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CRUSH Teaser

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CRUSH Teaser

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Author Carrie Banks

Author Carrie Banks

About the Author
Carrie Banks writes new adult and teen fiction coming of age and romance books.

She loves chocolate, coffee and dogs!

In addition to writing, Carrie enjoys riding her favorite horse, Sienna, camping in Cape Cod and hanging out with her six nephews!

 

 

 

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Where to Find Carrie Banks
Goodreads | NewsletterFacebook | TwitterInstagram

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – LOST HORIZON (Oz in Space) by Michelle Hercules

LOST HORIZON Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for LOST HORIZON, the first book in the young adult fantasy romance series, Oz in Space, by USA Today bestselling author, Michelle Hercules. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

LOST HORIZON (Oz in Space #1) by Michelle Hercules

LOST HORIZON (Oz in Space #1) by Michelle Hercules

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: LOST HORIZON
Series: Oz in Space #1
Author: Michelle Hercules
Release Date: June 14, 2019
Genre:
 Young Adult Fantasy Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
A magical planet torn apart by war. A defiant space pilot cadet determined to save the ones she loves. The adventure of a lifetime.

Oz like you have never seen before.

Space Academy prodigy Dorothy Hanson doesn’t have time for love nonsense. She has one goal, complete the mission her parents started before their untimely death.

When a cosmic disturbance hits the Kansas Space Station, Dorothy seizes that opportunity to go on her first space voyage. She didn’t expect to be sucked into a vortex nor land on a strange planet ravaged by war.

Stranded, she must embark on a perilous mission to the Land of Oz, the only nation that possesses the technology to send her home. Three strangers join Dorothy in her quest, all carrying reasons of their own for reaching Emerald City. A man without memories marked with a strange symbol on his face. A cyborg with a chip on his shoulder and a mysterious past. And a scarred hellioncat plagued by nightmares in the dark.

Dorothy doesn’t know if she can trust them, but as their journey progresses, their bond becomes stronger and Dorothy’s feelings evolve from suspicion to caring too much. Torn between contradicting emotions, she must find the strength to fight the evil forces that stack up against them along the way. Surviving the trip on the yellow road is priority number one, but can she survive losing her heart?

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LOST HORIZON Teaser

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Excerpt #2
The sky is midnight blue with no stars or any moons in sight. I feel so strange, staring at the alien canvas. It’s almost like there’s something wrong with it. There’s no sign of Mirus, which makes me worried the celestial being has left the orbit of Oz. The last time it appeared in our solar system, it only stayed for a few weeks.

Toto becomes restless in my arms, as if he’s picking up on my somber mood. His movements remind me that my wrists are still bound.

“Hey, Metal Pants. Can we stop now?”

The cyborg whirls around. The shadows across the planes of his face make the sharp edges even more pronounced. His robotic eye shines blue for a moment before the light dims.

“Do you need to pee?”

Heat rushes to my cheeks. I’m glad it’s dark and he can’t see how his simple question made me mortified for no reason.

“Why are you getting all flustered? Are you one of those girls who gets embarrassed about everything?”

My jaw drops. “How did you know … ugh, never mind. That special eye of yours has an infrared sensor, doesn’t it?”

Even in the gloom, I catch the slight upturn of his lips. “Among other things.”

“Dorothy’s wrists are still bound. Do you have anything that can cut through the bindings?” the sorcerer pipes in.

“Right.” The cyborg approaches, stopping only one step away from invading my personal space.

Involuntarily, tension spreads through my body, and I clutch Toto tighter.

“Relax,” he continues. “I’m not going to hurt you.”

“Are you implying I’m afraid of you?”

He cocks his head to the side, his long bangs covering a portion of his face. “Your heartbeat says so.”

“Stop reading my vitals with your freakish eye,” I snap.

The cyborg’s chest expands right before he releases a loud gale of air through his mouth. “Put your robo-dog down if you don’t want his body damaged.”

Still glaring at him, I set Toto on the ground. The poor dog runs to the sorcerer, hiding between his legs with a whine.

To show I’m not scared of the cyborg like Toto is, I lift my chin and raise my bound hands. “All right. Do your thing.” When the cyborg arches one eyebrow, I amend. “Please?”

He lifts his mechanical hand. From his index finger, a small knife slides out. In one swift move, he cuts the leather bindings from my wrists as if they were made out of butter.

“That’s a sharp blade you have there. Planning on scalping anyone?” I rub my wrists.

The cyborg grins again. “Not today.”

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LOST HORIZON Teaser

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Author Michelle Hercules

Author Michelle Hercules

About the Author
USA Today bestselling author Michelle Hercules always knew creative arts were her calling but not in a million years did she think she would write a novel. With a background in fashion design she thought she would follow that path. But one day, out of the blue, she had an idea for a book. One page turned into ten pages, ten pages turned into a hundred, and before she knew, her first book, The Prophecy of Arcadia, was born.

Michelle Hercules resides in The Netherlands with her husband and daughter. She is currently working on the Legends of Gattica series.

 

 

Where to Find Michelle Hercules
Goodreads | Website Facebook 

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Giveaway
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – THE DEMON KISS (Blackthorn Hunters Academy) by Juliana Haygert

THE DEMON KISS Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for THE DEMON KISS, the first book in the young adult paranormal romance series, Blackthorn Hunters Academy, by USA Today bestselling author, Juliana Haygert. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive teaser excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

THE DEMON KISS (Blackthorn Hunters Academy #1) by Juliana Haygert

THE DEMON KISS (Blackthorn Hunters Academy #1) by Juliana Haygert

About Book 1 – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: THE DEMON KISS
Series: Blackthorn Hunters Academy #1
Author: Juliana Haygert
Release Date: June 13, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
A young woman with a secret heritage. A man who made a deal with the devil. And an academy where the students are just as dangerous as the demons …

Erin
I’ve been kept from the truth all my life. Demons walk the earth, and I’m destined to slay them–I only wish I hadn’t lost someone I loved while discovering that truth.

Now the demons are after me. The only way to stay alive is to attend an academy for demon hunters–a school where I’ll learn how to kill supernaturals and slay the underworld’s minions. But I still feel there are secrets I’m not being told …

Rey
I sold my soul to save my family–and lost everything because of it. Now I’m a slave to the underworld, a fake hunter with half-demon blood.

I’ve been sent on a special assassination mission. If I fail, it means my life. But protecting Erin soon becomes more important than any other task, and there’s something about her that tells me her arrival at the academy will change everything …

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An upper young adult paranormal romance novel set in the universe of the Rite World, this is a dark fantasy you won’t want to miss! Forge your weapons and cast spells in a school where demons are hunted and the hunters themselves become prey.

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THE DEMON KISS Teaser Excerpt

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Author Juliana Haygert

Author Juliana Haygert

About the Author
While USA Today bestselling author Juliana Haygert dreams of being Wonder Woman, Buffy, or a blood elf shadow priest, she settles for the less exciting—but equally gratifying—life of a wife, mother, and author. Thousands of miles away from her former home in Brazil, she now resides in North Carolina and spends her days writing about kick-ass heroines and the heroes who drive them crazy.

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Where to find Juliana Haygert
Goodreads | Website | NewsletterFacebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | BookBub

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – RULES WE’RE MEANT TO BREAK by Natalie Williamson

RULES WE'RE MEANT TO BREAK Blog Tour

RULES WE'RE MEANT TO BREAK by Natalie Williamson

RULES WE’RE MEANT TO BREAK by Natalie Williamson

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Honest and full of heart, this clever contemporary romance debut deftly combines utterly relatable family drama with all the sweetness and uncertainy that comes with falling in love.

Rule #1: Don’t get attached.

Amber lives by strict rules to survive her mother’s love life: Always keep your eyes on the horizon and never get close to anyone connected to Mom’s boyfriends.

But after they move in with Kevin, the latest of her mom’s “soul mates,” the rules become increasingly difficult to follow. Kevin’s daughter, Cammie, keeps acting like Amber’s friend, even though she’s definitely not. And Jordan—star basketball player, hottest boy in school, and Cammie’s best friend—keeps showing up at the most inconvenient moments.

Amber has reasons for every one of her rules, and following them is the only way to protect her heart when her mom inevitably moves on. But as she spends more time with Kevin, his daughter, and especially Jordan, she starts to wonder if the rules might be worth breaking this time.

Chosen by readers like you for Macmillan’s young adult imprint Swoon Reads, Rules We’re Meant to Break is a charming, heartachingly real story of family and young love by debut author Natalie Williamson.

Praise for Rules We’re Meant to Break:

“The last time I devoured a book like this—I can’t even remember. … It was so openhearted and raw.” —Clarissa, reader on SwoonReads.com

“It is such a true true story about a girl finding herself within her first love. I loved it!” —Forever Bookish, reader on SwoonReads.com

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My Review
This is such a cute young adult romance. Everything from the settings to the characters sucked me in. Amber lives with her single mother, her father having left them when she was just five. Her mom bounces from one relationship to another, and after a particularly difficult breakup for Amber, she vows never to get close to anyone her mom dates again. This becomes challenging when they move into her mom’s then boyfriend’s place early in Amber’s senior year of high school. To make matter’s worse, this guy has a teen daughter who goes to Amber’s school. Said daughter, Cammie, is no bigger fan of the situation than Amber is. The only thing that makes the situation mildly tolerable is that hot Jordan Baugh lives down the street from her new house. Much to Amber’s surprise and delight, he seems to be flirting with her! And in a perfect world, that would be awesome, but Amber’s world is anything but perfect. It appears that Cammie has some sort of a history with Jordan and that breaks Rule No. 7 on her list of rules for surviving her mother’s dating life. If only Jordan wasn’t so incredibly adorable and insistent.

Plot
The plot centers around Amber’s relationship with Jordan, but is laced with Amber’s lack of a belief in relationships that can last and a fierce need to protect herself from getting hurt again. With the help of her best friends Hannah and Ryan, she navigates tutoring Jordan while attempting to hold fast to her “rules”. But feelings have a way of getting in the way of the best intentions. Strong subplots include tense relationships with her mother, Cammie, and her mom’s boyfriend, as well as Amber’s plans after graduation. She has her heart set on KU while her mother is dead set against it. All of these subplots weave expertly into the main plot for a compelling story beyond just the romance.

Characters
I love the characters so much. Amber is so relatable as a teen girl hell-bent on protecting her heart. Jordan is beyond adorable and it’s easy to see why Amber is attracted to him against her better judgments. Hannah is the perfect loyal best friend, even when she feels as if her friend isn’t necessarily doing what’s in her own best interests. And Cammie is suitably complex making her a standout character. Everyone comes across as authentic and well developed, creating balanced and nuanced relationships that drive the story.

What I Loved About RULES WE’RE MEANT TO BREAK
1. Buffy.
 The German shepherd adopted by Amber is cute, smart, loyal, and makes Amber a better person.

2. Buffy. The OTHER Buffy. The one Buffy is named for. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer references peppered throughout are lighthearted and actually tie several things together.

3. Jordan. The adorable basketball player with a penchant to capitalize words that excite him is a boy worth swooning over.

4. Angsty Romance. My favorite kind. With Amber’s insecurities and her list of rules, there was no way this romance wasn’t going to come with a health dose of angst. It just has a way of pulling at my heartstrings. I love, love, love it.

5. Realistic Growth. While Amber has some amazing growth, I love that she isn’t totally transformed. Her history is so ingrained in who she is that by the end she’s only tentatively stepping forward into the unknown rather than fully embracing it, giving this a really realistic vibe.

Bottom Line
Fabulous characters in realistic predicaments and a swoony romance to boot.

Disclaimer
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book
Title: RULES WE’RE MEANT TO BREAK
Author: Natalie Williamson
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Release Date: June 11, 2019
Pages: 296
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

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Author Natalie Williamson

Author Natalie Williamson

About the Author
Natalie Williamson is an HR person by day and a YA writer by night and nap time. She referenced Harry Potter in her first ever full time job interview, which tells you almost all the things you need to know about her. Other important things to know include: she loves her husband, daughter, dogs, and cat; she has a serious dessert problem; and she frequently Wikipedias movies and TV shows to find out if they have happy endings. RULES WE’RE MEANT TO BREAK is her debut novel..

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Where to find Natalie Williamson
Goodreads | Website | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY by Claire Kann

IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY, a stand-alone young adult contemporary LGBTQ+ romance, by Claire Kann. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY by Claire Kann

IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY by Claire Kann

About the Book
Title: IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY
Author: Claire Kann
Publisher: Swoon Reads

Release Date: June 4, 2019
Genre:
 Young Adult Contemporary LGBTQ+ Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
High school finally behind her, Winnie is all set to attend college in the fall. But first she’s spending her summer days working at her granny’s diner and begins spending her midnights with Dallas—the boy she loves to hate and hates that she likes. Winnie lives in Misty Haven, a small town where secrets are impossible to keep—like when Winnie allegedly snaps on Dr. Skinner, which results in everyone feeling compelled to give her weight loss advice for her own good. Because they care that’s she’s “too fat.”

Winnie dreams of someday inheriting the diner—but it’ll go away if they can’t make money, and fast. Winnie has a solution—win a televised cooking competition and make bank. But Granny doesn’t want her to enter—so Winnie has to find a way around her formidable grandmother. Can she come out on top?

 

 

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Excerpt
Three

After leaving Dallas’s house, I deserved a break.

Admittedly, deserve was a strong word, but I was taking one anyway.

The stoplight turned green, and I made the turn back into Misty Haven. Main Street turned into Main Circle—a giant roundabout with a memorial gazebo erected in Misty Haven’s honor at the center. I drove past the ice-cream shop, Meltdown Scoops, which always had a reserve of  praline ripple just for me; the coffee bar, the Traveling Cruz, which supplied Goldeen’s with freshly roasted beans in exchange for advertising space on the diner’s menus; the dance studio, Day and Night, where I made it through six summer-school lessons before breaking my ankle and never going back; the twenty- four-hour grocery and convenience store, Nina’s, where I’d worked the overnight shift after the diner closed for a few weeks last summer with my partner, Kara, to earn money for a new Cuisinart-something that Kara absolutely had to have but her parents refused to buy for her; and the joint post office/town hall/government building across from the gazebo.

Every second, every scene and sidewalk and side alley, every inch held a memory. My heart would always belong here.

At a stop sign, Mrs. Pantoja awkwardly tried to wave as she crossed the street, hands full of leashes for the ten dogs she walked. She’d worked at the local shelter for as long as I had known her. The scene looked a bit like a picture you’d randomly see online.

A digital painting of a lady walking too many dogs on a breezy day in the middle of a quaint town that made you smile and get all warm and fuzzy.

Summer in Misty Haven had that kind of artistic, frozen feel to it. Almost like it could make you believe time didn’t exist and every- thing would be perfect forever. Plentiful trees, flowering bushes, green grass full of picket signs asking people to not walk on it, little kids with scraped knees running around and yelling because they had nothing better to do.

A place where you’d be just as likely to be eaten alive by mosqui- tos, born and bred in the swampy parts of the man-made lake at the west edge of town, as you would be to have a hate-to-love romance with a cutie-with-a-booty who had moved to Misty during the spring and had a supernatural affinity for math and working out, and also adored kids.

I pulled into an empty parking spot in front of Winter Wonderland Books. The door chimed as I entered, but no one greeted me. No one at the front desk meant Kara was on duty and had abandoned her post to go bake something.

Easily fixable.

“DO LIBRARY RULES APPLY IN THIS PLACE? I HAVE A LOUD SPEAKING VOICE BUT REQUIRE RECOMMENDATIONS FOR BOOKS.”

One.

Two.

Three.

A scream shattered the silence of the bookshop moments before Kara appeared. She ran at a full sprint, arms outstretched as she launched herself straight into my waiting arms.

In the five years I had known Kara, she’d barely changed. She still had the same super curly, auburn-colored hair; face full of the same- colored freckles; and the same olive-toned skin. She always wore the same rectangular deep-purply-red glasses and a shrewd, calculating look on her face at all times. She hadn’t even grown a single inch, still clocking in at an impressive five feet zero, with the same slightly chubby build and penchant for wearing jumpsuits.

And my heart still thumped extra hard against my rib cage every time I saw her. Truth be told, I wasn’t always sequestered away in Goldeen’s. Winter Wonderland Books took third place on the where- to-find-Winnie list. Second place? Kara’s room upstairs.

“You didn’t tell me you were coming over, punk!” She let go,

slapping my arm.

“I like it when you scream for me. Makes me feel special and wanted, and also kind of scared. Keeps me on my toes.”

Kara laughed. “Working?” “Eternally.”

“Figured. How long you got?”

“Not very. Just wanted to see your face.”

“I like it when you make good life choices. Come on.” She didn’t wait, grasping my wrist and leading me forward. “I just finished mak- ing waffles.”

“Scratch or Eggo?”

“Girl, please.” Kara gave me a withering look.

The tiny kitchen with its rounded retro teal refrigerator and oven/ stove combo looked and smelled like the single greatest bakery disas- ter area in the history of explosions. Collateral damage included flour everywhere; a fleet of similar-sized bowls dripping sticky glaze onto the counters; piles of unfrosted cupcakes arranged haphazardly on cooling racks; baking sheets stacked with a multitude of cookies; a seven-layer rainbow cake practically screaming for fondant, pearls, and sprinkles; and icing stuck to the cabinet doors like she had flung it to check its consistency.

I’d actually seen her do that last one once. Kara baking in the kitchen was An Experience™, but she ignored it all, not attempting to explain, apologize, or make excuses for the mess. Instead, she marched to the wooden table in the center of the room, where a red Belgian waffle iron steamed and hissed with urgency, and pulled out a chair for me.

“Why does it smell like brownies? You said waffles.” I sat down. Above the scents of sweetened cream cheese, irrepressible vanilla everything, German chocolate heavy on the coconut, powdered sugar delightfulness, chocolate with that slightly burnt smell that never stopped it from still being delicious, cinnamon, and graham crackers, I caught a whiff of something cooking that didn’t quite make sense.

“It’s the best of both worlds.” Kara grinned with feverish pride as she lifted the lid. “My two-hour-old secret recipe for crisp brownie waffles. Toppings pending, but I’m leaning toward ice cream, whipped cream, and/or fruit to give it that familiar funnel-cake vibe.” She inhaled. “Doesn’t it smell amazing?”

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Author Claire Kann

Author Claire Kann

About the Author
Claire Kann is the author of LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE and an award-winning online storyteller. In her other life, she works for a nonprofit that you may have heard of where she daydreams like she’s paid to do it. Find out more by visiting her website: www.clairekann.com (and while you’re there, tell her about your cats. She loves cats. A lot.)

 

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Claire Kann
Goodreads | Website | FacebookTwitter

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – SKIES OF OLYMPUS (Skies of Olympus) by Eliza Raine

SKIES OF OLYMPUS Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for SKIES OF OLYMPUS, the first book in the young adult paranormal/fantasy series, Skies of Olympus, by Eliza Raine. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

SKIES OF OLYMPUS (Skies of Olympus #1) by Eliza Raine

SKIES OF OLYMPUS (Skies of Olympus #1) by Eliza Raine

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: SKIES OF OLYMPUS
Series: Skies of Olympus #1
Author: Eliza Raine
Release Date: May 11, 2019
Genre:
 Young Adult Paranormal/Fantasy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Twelve deadly Trials. A race for immortality. Her last chance for revenge.

Olympus is a beautiful but dangerous place, controlled by twelve Gods wielding unlimited power. Now they have devised the ultimate entertainment; a chance for their favourites to compete in twelve trials to win the ultimate prize – immortality.

Lyssa didn’t think the Gods knew who she was, until she was chosen to try out for the Trials with the crew of her old but beloved smugglers ship, the Alastor. For her the Trials are about much more than an eternal life. They’re about stopping the monster from her past gaining the one thing that would put her revenge out of reach forever. Can she face her murderous father and stop him from becoming immortal?

Join Lyssa and her crew alongside giants, centaurs, satyrs and Gods in the first of twelve episodes of this brand new YA Fantasy retelling. This is Greek mythology like you’ve never read before.

 

 

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Excerpt #1
A silence fell over the crowded cargo deck as the last side of the wooden crate was crowbarred loose. Not a comfortable silence, or an amazed silence, but an unpleasant silence. The type that is never followed by anything good. Captain Lyssa of the Alastor stared, tight-lipped, as a being she had never seen before swam gently in wide circles around the tank that had been inside the crate.

It was the same size as a human, with a torso and head that was humanoid. It had no legs though, and Lyssa frowned at the tail-like limb that was there instead. The whole body and face were covered in iridescent white scales that glistened pale purple when the thin shafts of light fell on them. A brisk cough snapped her attention to the woman stood beyond the tank, the Lady Lamia.

‘I’m sorry, my lady. Can we just have a minute alone?’ Epizon said, stepping forward. The covered head he addressed nodded curtly in response. Epizon turned and marched towards the maze of stacked crates filling the back of the ship’s hull. Lyssa walked quickly to keep up with him, his stride much longer than hers. As soon as they were out of earshot, she spoke.

‘Epizon, I know what you’re going to say, and it’s too late. We can’t afford to upset these people.’

Epizon spun to face her, his dark face set and angry. ‘Captain, our code isn’t much, but we’re not slavers!’ His deep voice rose as he spoke, and she glared at him. He looked down, taking a long breath, visibly containing his emotion. ‘Captain, we did not know there was a being in the cargo. We will not sell beings.’

‘She’s already here, with six Cyclops guards and the money. What exactly do you propose we do?’ Lyssa gestured back towards where the Lady Lamia stood, surrounded by the ugly beings. They were large, stupid creatures with one amber eye in the centre of their forehead, and sharp protrusions erupting all over their hairless skulls. A nervous-looking human boy stood behind her, holding an open box of silver drachmas.

‘You know exactly what I think we should do,’ he said, urgency in his low voice. ‘You can’t seriously be suggesting we hand this creature over to her. You’ve heard the rumours.’

Lyssa clenched her fists and looked back towards the Lady Lamia. The daughter of a god, and clearly not all human, she was famous in Olympus for her cruelty. Some of the rumours said she only ate living flesh. Lyssa’s nose scrunched up in revulsion at the thought. Her eyes flicked to the tank, and her stomach lurched. The creature’s huge green eyes were fixed on her. Even from a distance, they were piercing enough to unsettle her. This thing had been alone in the dark for weeks in the hull of the Alastor. Lyssa looked back at Epizon. Any moral turmoil she felt was magnified plainly on her first mate’s face. He looked at her beseechingly.

‘Of course not,’ she breathed, and Epizon’s tense stance relaxed. ‘But we really can’t afford to fight her. That’s why we took this bloody job in the first place; she was paying well,’ Lyssa muttered. Her ‘ask no questions’ attitude suited the captain of a smugglers ship, but this wasn’t the first time it had landed her somewhere she didn’t want to be.

‘Don’t worry, Captain,’ her first mate said, his huge frame filling out as he stood taller. ‘Maybe we can reason with her.’

Lyssa snorted. ‘Ever the diplomat,’ she said, rolling her eyes. ‘The woman is rumoured to be a vampire demigod. The chances of getting out of this with no damage are slim to none.’

Epizon shrugged. ‘Cost of doing the right thing, Captain.’

‘If that cost ends up being our lives, it’s on you,’ she said, turning back towards the tank.

‘I can live with that. Besides, we’ve taken on worse things than her and her Cyclopes,’ he answered, starting towards the lady.

‘I’m more worried about the thing in the tank,’ Lyssa muttered, and followed after him.

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Author Eliza Raine

Author Eliza Raine

About the Author
Eliza Raine lives near Reading in England with her husband, three cats and outrageously cute puppy. She has a BA Hons in History and has a deep-rooted passion for all types of mythology and stories about women who don’t need rescuing.

She can usually be found reading fairytale retellings, playing board games or binge-watching Netflix shows.

 

 

 

Where to Find Eliza Raine
Goodreads | Website | FacebookInstagram | Pinterest

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – NORTH TO NARA (Crimson Sash) by Amanda Marin

NORTH TO NARA Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for NORTH TO NARA, the first book in the young adult dystopian sci-fi romance series, Crimson Sash, by Amanda Marin. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

NORTH TO NARA (Crimson Sash #1) by Amanda Marin

NORTH TO NARA (Crimson Sash #1) by Amanda Marin

About the Book
Title: NORTH TO NARA
Series: Crimson Sash
Author: Amanda Marin
Publisher: Inkspell Publishing

Release Date: March 20, 2019
Genre:
 Young Adult Dystopian Sci-Fi Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
Neve Hall has always admired the good works of the civil servants who brought prosperity back to the Nation. She especially respects the Sufferers—empaths who, with the help of technology, anonymously bear others’ troubles for them. But when her assigned empath is abruptly retired, she uncovers certain secrets. Like the identity of her new Sufferer, Micah Ward… and the fact that behind his kind smile is a life filled with loneliness and pain.

The closer Neve grows to Micah, the more desperate she becomes to protect him from a cruel and gruesome fate. But in a world where only a few are allowed the luxury of love, saving Micah comes with a price: Neve must choose between her loyalty to the Nation or her heart—a decision that will take them both on a race for their freedom, and their lives.

 

 

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NORTH TO NARA Teaser

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Excerpt #4
There’s hurt and anxiety in Micah’s eyes. He’s trying to understand the reason I’d put our secret at risk. He thinks I’ve betrayed him, I realize. He thinks I’ve told them—that I’m leaving him to the mercy of Isla and the director without even warning him. And the idea of him wondering whether I might be capable of doing that to him upsets me more than anything.

“It’s not what you’re thinking, Micah, I swear—”

“Then why? Whatever it is, just tell me so I can help.” He’s begging me, with his sad, stag’s stare, not to break him.

My eyes burn, and silent tears boil over as I remind myself of my reasons. The way he limps from time to time. The fact that he’s not going to get better, only worse. The agony of knowing that I’ll someday lose him—and that I, as one of his Sieves, am partly to blame.

“It’s because I just can’t do it anymore, Micah,” I tell him, wiping tears from my face. I turn away so he won’t see me cry like this. “I won’t make you Suffer for me—not when I have the power to keep you from experiencing pain.” My body shakes with the torment of it all, but then I feel his hands on my shoulders, offering comfort, no longer afraid of me.

“It’s more than just my duty to Suffer for you, though—I want to do it,” he tells me softly. “I want to ease your pain, Neve—you, above all people. I would do anything for you. This is nothing.”

“I know you would—I never questioned that,” I tell him as I try to calm down. “But something’s happened now that I know you—it was different before, when I didn’t.” I struggle to find the words to explain—to help him understand in a way that will make sense to him. “Just as you want to ease my pain, I want to ease yours.”

I turn to wrap my arms around Micah’s waist, and there’s a strange glint in his eyes, like he’s peering into my heart and recognizing a bit of his own inside it. I’ve reached him. He sighs, and when he opens his mouth to speak again, his voice is quiet and strained.

“If you really mean that, you’ll come back to the Center,” he says. “You have to keep your appointments, Neve. They’ll get suspicious if you don’t. They’ll find out…”

He pauses, and I see conflict registering in the worried lines that form across his forehead. Once we put words to what we are, we can no longer deny it. But Micah pushes down his fear. After a moment, he squares his shoulders, tucks a loose strand of hair behind my ear, and finishes his sentence.

“They’ll find out about us.”

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NORTH TO NARA Teaser

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Author Amanda Marin

Author Amanda Marin

About the Author
When Amanda was a child, her father traveled frequently for business, always bringing her back a book as a present. Whether she was getting lost in the pages of a tale about far-away knights, girls with supernatural powers, or kindly giants, she was quickly hooked on stories.

Over the years, Amanda has followed her own yellow brick road of reading and writing, and although her adventures haven’t involved sword fights or saving the planet from certain annihilation, they have involved jobs in scholarly publishing and marketing, a modest amount of travel, and a lifelong love of novels.

Amanda holds degrees in English from Salve Regina University and Boston College. Her favorite things include Starbucks lattes, lazy summer afternoons at the beach, and books with characters that make you go “awww.” She lives in New Hampshire with her family and furbaby, Snickers the Poodle.

Where to Find Amanda Marin
Goodreads | Website | Twitter | FacebookInstagram | Amazon | BookBub

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review – DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS by Nina Moreno

DON'T DATE ROSA SANTOS by Nina Moreno

DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS by Nina Moreno

4.5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Rosa Santos is cursed by the sea-at least, that’s what they say. Dating her is bad news, especially if you’re a boy with a boat.

But Rosa feels more caught than cursed. Caught between cultures and choices. Between her abuela, a beloved healer and pillar of their community, and her mother, an artist who crashes in and out of her life like a hurricane. Between Port Coral, the quirky South Florida town they call home, and Cuba, the island her abuela refuses to talk about.

As her college decision looms, Rosa collides – literally – with Alex Aquino, the mysterious boy with tattoos of the ocean whose family owns the marina. With her heart, her family, and her future on the line, can Rosa break a curse and find her place beyond the horizon?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My Review
a sweeping tale that takes place over a few short weeks in the spring before Rosa Santo’s graduates and needs to determine what to do with her life. She has a complex history. Her grandmother gave birth on a boat fleeing communist Russia and her grandfather died on the same trip. Rosa’s own father was also taken by the sea when his boat didn’t come back one day. To say she has a healthy respect for the ocean would be an understatement. In fact, she’s never really ventured down to the docks. At least until the harbor in her small Florida town is threatened and Rosa and the rest of the town come together with a plan to save it. This plan introduces her to tall, dark and brooding Alex. Not only is he ridiculously attractive, but he bakes. And he owns a boat. So, whatever feelings Rosa is developing for Alex cannot be acted upon. Because a to love a boy with a boat means to lose him to sea. At least according to the family curse. So when life has a way of disrupting the best of plans, Rosa will need to decide if she’s going to live in her family’s past or forge her own future.

Plot
The story centers around Rosa’s quest to find out more about who she is. She wants to study in Cuba, but with the current administration making that all but impossible, she turns to her secretive grandmother, with whom she lives, and her mother, who pops in and out of Rosa’s life, for answers. But her grandmother has roots in the old ways, dabbling in santeria and other Cuban customs that include doling out the information slowly. Rosa becomes frustrated and endangers her relationship with her grandmother just as her relationship with Alex takes an interesting but scary twist. Strong themes include family ties, finding yourself, coming of age, and the value of community.

Characters
Rosa and her family are incredibly detailed. Rosa, her mother, and Mimi, her grandmother, are all complex with rich backstories and fully-developed arcs. The balance of the characters, with the exception of Alex who has is own arc, are merely props to support the main trio. However, they never nosedive into stereotypes. They may have been created to serve a purpose, but they come across as more than just fluff, which is an incredible feat by the author.

What I Loved About DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS!
1. Cuban Culture.
 I’ll admit to not knowing much about this. My in-laws are of Spanish and Native American descent, but hail from the Southwest, which means their Hispanic culture is a mixed bag. It was fascinating to learn more about Cuba and the Florida Cuban culture. Everything from the food, to rituals, and daily life was vivid and exciting.

2. The Viejitos. The gaggle of retired men and their gossip they share via their Instagram account is both endearing and hysterical.

3. Rosa. She is so complex. The things she wants, what she values, and her desire to not rock the family boat create a deep character who was easy to cheer her on.

4. Alex. He has a bohemian spirit trapped in the body of a loyal son. A romantic at heart, I was rooting for Rosa to give him a chance.

5. The Ending. More than a little confusing at times, I liked that the author left much to the interpretation of the reader.

Bottom Line
Fantastic settings, beautiful writing, and amazing character combine for this young adult tale about discovering who you are.

Disclaimer
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book
Title: DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS
Author: Nina Moreno
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Release Date: May 14, 2019
Pages: 335
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | GooglePlay | IndieBoundPowell’s

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Author Nina Moreno

Author Nina Moreno

About the Author
Nina Moreno is a YA writer whose writing is somewhere between Southern fiction and a telenovela. She graduated from the University of Florida and writes about Latinas chasing their dreams, falling in love, and navigating life in the hyphen. She lives by a swamp outside of Orlando where she enjoys listening to carefully curated playlists, hunting through thrift stores, drinking too much Cuban coffee, and walking into the sea every chance she gets. DON’T DATE ROSA SANTOS is her first novel.

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Where to find Nina Moreno
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest

 

Cover Reveal – THE HOLLOW QUEEN (Stolen Empire) by Sherry D. Ficklin

THE HOLLOW QUEEN Cover Reveal

Clean Teen Publishing and author Sherry D. Ficklin are unveiling the cover to THE HOLLOW QUEEN, the fifth book in the young adult historical romance series, Stolen Empire, releasing September 23, 2019. See below for the cover, information on the book and series, and pre-order links.

THE HOLLOW QUEEN (Stolen Empire #5) by Sherry D. Ficklin

THE HOLLOW QUEEN (Stolen Empire #5) by Sherry D. Ficklin

About The Book
Title: THE HOLLOW QUEEN
Series: Stolen Empire #5
Author: Sherry D. Ficklin
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Genre: Young Adult Historical Romance
Release Date: September 23, 2019
Links: Goodreads

Synopsis
As a princess of the Romanov Empire, Elizabeth has enjoyed a life of luxury and privilege. But the sudden deaths of her parents leaves her unprotected – awash in the dangerous tide of her family’s political rivals. When the supreme council crowns her half-nephew Peter II in her place, Elizabeth is left with no title, no power—and no allies. Now little more than a bastard in the eyes of the world, she is sent to serve in the palatial home of Prince Menshikov—the real power behind the boy king.

But Elizabeth won’t fade quietly into the background.

Determined to uncover the truth behind her mother’s murder and expose the men who mean to rule Russia in secret, she grows closer to the handsome young king, and swears to protect him and his rule at any cost. But the forces that oppose them are as dark as they are far-reaching–and this time, Elizabeth could lose more than just her title…

 

 

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: QUEEN OF SOMEDAY – FREE on Kindle
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AUBarnes & Noble

Book 2: QUEEN OF TOMORROW
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble 

Book 3: QUEEN OF ALWAYS
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble 

Book 4: THE WINTER QUEEN
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble

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Author Sherry D. Ficklin

Author Sherry D. Ficklin

About Sherry D. Ficklin
Sherry D. Ficklin is a full time writer from Colorado where she lives with her husband, four kids, two dogs, and a fluctuating number of chickens and house guests. A former military brat, she loves to travel and meet new people.

She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she’s on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.

She is the author of several YA novels and in her spare time she co-hosts Curvy Writer Radio.

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Where to Find Sherry D. Ficklin
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter
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Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – SHANTALLOW by Cara Martin

SHANTALLOW Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for SHANTALLOW, a stand-alone young adult horror novel, by Cara Martin, releasing September 24, 2019. See below for information on the book, preorder links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

SHANTALLOW by Cara Martin

SHANTALLOW by Cara Martin

About the Book
Title: SHANTALLOW
Author: Cara Martin
Publisher: Cormorant Books
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Horror
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble

Synopsis
Tanvi isn’t the girl of Misha’s dreams; she’s the girl from his nightmares. She has appeared in his chilling dreams before he even meets her; when he DOES meet her, he falls for her.

Their relationship turns stormy, bordering on abusive, and takes a dramatic turn when they are held captive by a group hoping to extract money from Tanvi’s wealthy family.

But there is something more sinister at work, and the kidnappers and their victims find themselves struggling for survival as a supernatural force from Misha’s nightmares makes itself known in the real world.

 

 

 

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Excerpt #2
She wasn’t a dream. We weren’t standing in the clearing in the woods, the sky as black as dirty oil and gloom pressing in on us from every angle. She was a regular teenage girl next to me, one of her overalls straps threatening to slip off her shoulder.

Tanvi shifted into park and furrowed her eyebrows. “You like what you see?” she asked pointedly, right hand firmly clutching the gearshift. Brown eyes stared at me appraisingly, a current of antagonism headed directly for my forehead while I refused to duck.

“Excuse me?” I said.

“You’ve been staring at me practically the entire ride. I figured you must like what you see.” If she’d seen me in her nightmares she would’ve stared too. On the lawn and again in her car. No matter how she tried to stop herself.

“I do,” I admitted. I like it a lot. The hairs at the back of my neck stood on end. My calf muscles clenched and my jaw along with them, the falling sensation expanding inside me like a mushroom cloud, annihilating everything else.

A sour smile skimmed across Tanvi’s lips, only to be replaced with a frown. “What if I followed you inside?” she asked. “What would you do?”

That wasn’t a fair question, and I frowned back. Outside a dog was barking wearily, as if purely by habit. Arctic air from the car vents brushed my arms like invisible fingertips.

“You don’t want me to?” Tanvi asked, leaning back against the headrest.

Then her cellphone chirped, demanding her attention and giving me extra time to work out her desired reaction. Was she messing with my head? Baiting me so that she could relish shooting me down? What could I do or say that wouldn’t be the wrong thing? Who the hell was this girl? Why was she stalking my nightmares?

Tanvi fished her phone out of her overalls pocket, biting the side of her lip as she glanced at the screen. “My friends back at the movie theater,” she volunteered with a glance. “They realized I was gone.”

“Why did you leave?”

Tanvi shrugged, her dusty pink lips drooping at the corners. “I didn’t want to be there.”

“Because of your bad day?”

“Uh-huh.” Any anger coming off her had dissolved, sadness gusting in to take its place. My defensiveness began to fall away as the change registered.

“I don’t think you really want to be here either,” I observed, heart punching against my rib cage. “Why’d you drive me home?”

“I don’t know.” She laid a finger against the amethyst centerpiece of her bracelet. “Don’t you ever do something without really knowing why?”

“All the time,” I replied. Not the whole truth, but it made Tanvi smile.

“Actually, I do know,” she admitted with an incline of her head. “I didn’t want to think. I wanted” — her lips lingered, blooming in slow motion — “a break. But I don’t want to talk about what from. That defeats the purpose.”

“Okay,” I said quietly, the ground beneath us shifting and whatever was going to happen between us tonight beginning to come into focus. “Then … come in if you like.” I unbuckled my seatbelt, the joint pain and headache worse now that I was opening the car door and stepping onto the asphalt. Nervous energy collided with the flu symptoms, struggling to overtake them. Leaning down, I peered into the car. “I do want you to,” I said.

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Author Cara Martin

Author Cara Martin

About the Author
Cara Martin is the author of several acclaimed novels for young people published under the name C. K. Kelly Martin. Her most recent novel, Stricken, was released in 2017. A graduate of the Film Studies program at York University, Cara has lived in the Greater Toronto Area and Dublin, Ireland. Within the space of 3500 miles she’s worked a collection of quirky jobs at multiple pubs and video stores, an electricity company, a division of the Irish post office, a London toyshop, and an advertising analytics company. She’s also been an image editor for a dot-com startup that didn’t survive the 90s, and a credit note clerk for Canada’s largest national distributor of General Merchandise. Cara currently resides in Ottawa, Ontario with her husband and is still afraid of the Child Catcher from the film adaptation of CHITTY CHITTY BANG BANG.

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Where to Find Cara Martin
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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Giveaway
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Young Adult Book Review + Giveaway – YOU, ME AND LETTING GO by Katie Kaleski

YOU, ME AND LETTING GO Blog Tour

 

YOU, ME AND LETTING GO by Katie Kaleski

YOU, ME AND LETTING GO by Katie Kaleski

5 out of 5 stars

Synopsis
Van Sato’s got labels. Tourettes, ADHD, SPD – words that have defined his existence since the time he was old enough to know what they meant. Now, Van wants to prove he’s more than an acronym, a syndrome, a problem kid. He takes a summer job as a day camp counselor to prove he’s capable of independence and moving on to the next phase in his life. Maybe, he might even make a friend while there. Someone who’s got just as many or even more labels than him. Someone who understands what it’s like.

Tabby Dubanowksi wants to forget about everything, the hospitalization, the judgment, the whispers behind her back. As a camp counselor, she will be admired, looked up to, and able to help people who don’t know anything about her old life. Tabby wants a fresh start and a chance to re-ignite her passion for film-making, if only for one summer.

After running away from their pasts, Van and Tabby collide in a storm cloud of attraction laced with self-doubt, insecurity, shame, and blame. Now, with Van feeling like he might have to quit his job, and Tabby struggling to quell the urge to cut, they will struggle to find themselves in a world designed to keep them apart.

 

 

 

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My Review
Two misfits, who see the humanity in each, find a bond that goes beyond mere attraction. What I loved best about this tale is that it wasn’t like they wound up together because no one else would have them, no one else understood their struggles, or any of the typical tropes with characters who have serious medical or psychological issues. Instead, they two were genuinely attracted to each other despite their issues. Their own challenges kept them from reacting to each other in a way most people would, which only fueled that attraction into something more. The meet cute was anything but cute when Van, who suffers from Tourettes, called Tabby by her hated high school nickname, “Lard Ass” when they run into each other at the same summer camp where they’re both working as counselors. But even after Van apologizes and Tabby decides it’s not enough, he never uses his Tourettes as an excuse for why he blurted it out unbidden. Their friendship develops without that understanding, making it more authentic and deep. Tabby has her own issues stemming from an eating disorder and cutting herself in an attempt to cope. But somehow, Van and Tabby overcome every obstacle to find solace in friendship and maybe just a little bit more.

Plot
The main plot centers on the relationship between Van and Tabby, but because they both have huge obstacles to overcome, there are strong subplots involving these as well. Van hopes for a life of independence even though on top of Tourette’s he has ADHD and SPD. Tabby has a tenuous relationship with food and deep-seated insecurities that drive nearly everything she does. She’s just trying to learn how to live life outside of Hope Springs where she spent time dealing with her anorexia. Romance isn’t on either kid’s radar, but some things just can’t be denied.

Characters
Oh the characters!! They are my favorite thing about the story. Van and his irreverent humor when it comes to his condition. Tabby and her confident insecurities (yes, that is actually a thing). The loving families who just want what’s best for Van and Tabby but still manage to do so much wrong. And best friends, Matt and Maritza are people I’d want to hang out with. The author totally does right by her characters, giving them depth, humanity, and creating such amazingly authentic-feeling three-dimensional beings that I was rooting for them from the opening chapters. Sometimes characters need to grow on me, but not this bunch!

What I Loved About YOU, ME, & LETTING GO!
1. Van.
 The boy with the tics so severe he hits himself and others with uncontrollable arms has a heart of gold. The way he deals with the kids in his care will melt anyone’s heart.

2. Tabby. It can be difficult to identify with and not get annoyed with insecure characters, but Tabby is so much more than that and I loved her from her first chapter.

3. Summer Camp. The kids are hysterical, from a boy who eats everything to a girl who likes to dissect whatever is found, including her food, bring humor and adorableness to the pages.

4. Honesty. The author’s honest portrayal of anorexia, cutting, Tourette, ADHD, and SPD show that people are so much more than the labels we attach to them.

5. Friendship. The bonds of friendship throughout the tale were heartwarming and the threads that tied everything together.

Bottom Line
A wonderful young adult tale about overcoming odds and taking control of your own life with some of the best characters in the genre.

Disclaimer
I was provided with a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: YOU, ME, & LETTING GO
Author: Katie Kaleski
Release Date: May 14, 2019
Pages: 197
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Author Katie Kaleski

Author Katie Kaleski

About the Author
Katie Kaleski has started down many career paths and held many jobs—indie craft store clerk, pizza maker, photo developer, shoe salesperson and cashier, dental assistant in the army, daycare teacher, student teacher—but her favorite one by far is being a writer.

She’s originally from Chicago, so she says things like pop, gym shoes, and front room. Her favorite food group is sugar, and she loves writing young adult novels.
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Where to find Katie Kaleski
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

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Giveaway
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Cover Reveal – SUMMER BUCKET LIST by T.K. Rapp

SUMMER BUCKET LIST Cover Reveal

Author T.K. Rapp is revealing the cover to SUMMER BUCKET LIST, a stand-alone young adult contemporary romance, releasing July 15, 2019.  See below for the cover, information on the book, preorder links, and a link to add it to your Goodreads TBR.

SUMMER BUCKET LIST by T.K. Rapp

SUMMER BUCKET LIST by T.K. Rapp

About the Book
Title: SUMMER BUCKET LIST
Author: T.K. Rapp
Release Date: July 15, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
Link: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Recently graduated from high school, Holland Monroe had no expectations for her last summer before heading off to college to be anything but ordinary.

Until she got a job as a waitress at the local country club to make extra money for school.

Milo Davis was smart, cute, and absolutely not interested in Holland. At least that was what she believed. But the day she started working at the restaurant, everything changed.

Finally together, they were left with only three months to spend time together before she moved away.

Good thing they decided to make their time as memorable as possible.

But will they remain friends? Or will checking off items on their summer bucket list lead them to something they didn’t expect — Falling in love.

 

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Author T.K. Rapp

Author T.K. Rapp

About the Author
T.K. Rapp is a Texas girl born and raised. She earned a B.A. in Journalism from Texas A&M and it was there that she met the love of her life. He had a contract with the U.S. Navy that would take them across both coasts, and ultimately land them back home in Texas.

Upon finally settling in Texas, T.K. worked as a graphic designer and photographer for the family business that her mom started years earlier. She was able to infuse her creativity and passion, into something she enjoyed, but something was still missing. There was a voice in the back of her head that told her to write, so write, she did. And, somewhere on an external hard drive, are several stories she started and never finished.

Now at home, raising her two daughters, T.K. has more time to do the things she loves, which includes photography and writing. When she’s not doing one of those, she can be found with her family, which keeps her busy, hanging with family and friends, and mostly relaxing. She is a lover of raunchy humor, gossip blogs and a good books.

Where to Find T.K. Rapp
Goodreads | WebsiteFacebook | TwitterInstagram

 

 

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – HOLD MY HAND by Michael Barakiva

HOLD MY HAND Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for HOLD MY HAND, a stand-alone young adult contemporary LGBTQ+ romance, by Michael Barakiva. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on his giveaway.

HOLD MY HAND by Michael Barakiva

HOLD MY HAND by Michael Barakiva

About the Book
Title: HOLD MY HAND
Author: Michael Barakiva
Publisher: Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Release Date: May 21, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary LGBTQ+ Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AUBarnes & Noble | iBooksKobo | GooglePlay

Synopsis
Alek Khederian thinks about his life B.E. and A.E.: Before Ethan and After Ethan. Before Ethan, Alek was just an average Armenian-American kid with a mess of curly dark hair, grades not nearly good enough for his parents, and no idea of who he was or what he wanted. After he got together with Ethan, Alek was a new man. Stylish. Confident. (And even if he wasn’t quite marching in LGBTQ parades), Gay and Out and Proud.

With their six-month anniversary coming up, Alek and Ethan want to do something special to celebrate. Like, really special. Like, the most special thing two people in love can do with one another. But Alek’s not sure he’s ready for that. And then he learns something about Ethan that may not just change their relationship, but end it.

Alek can’t bear the thought of finding out who he’d be P.E.: Post-Ethan. But he also can’t forgive or forget what Ethan did. Luckily, his best friend Becky and madcap Armenain family are there to help him figure out whether it’s time to just let Ethan go, or reach out and hold his hand.

Hold My Hand is a funny, smart, relatable take on the joy and challenges of teenage love, the boundaries of forgiveness, and what it really means to be honest.

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Excerpt #1
Kissing Ethan rocked.

Kissing Ethan was like taking a rocket to outer space, floating in zero gravity, and marveling at the incomprehensible beauty of the creations of the universe. Kissing Ethan was sweet like the last piece of baklava, drenched in honey, snatched from the bottom of the box. Kissing Ethan was the answer to an unasked prayer.

And then there was being kissed by Ethan.

Being kissed by Ethan was not the same as kissing him.

Being kissed by Ethan was rapture, surrender. Being kissed was surfing a wave of joy, unpredictable and uncontrollable, that could break any moment and send you tumbling, an end- less series of surprises.

Being kissed by Ethan was endorphins kicking in two hours into a tennis match, transforming pain into euphoria. It was being a ship in a violent storm, hoping you wouldn’t be torn apart as the ocean churned beneath you. It was feeling like your skin, your very body, would explode because it couldn’t possibly contain all the joy pulsing through it.

Alek brought Ethan’s face back up to his own. He kissed Ethan back.

Kissing Ethan was safer than being kissed by him. “Whoa.” Alek pulled away, gasping for air, as if he’d just edged out a victory in the tiebreaker of a five-set tennis match, full of baseline strokes, cross-court slams, and net game saves. “Come on,” Ethan purred. “We’re just getting started.”

Hundreds of half-naked men stared at Alek from the images Ethan had plastered around his room, cut from magazine ads—a kaleidoscopic homage to homoeroticism. The effect was dizzying as wall and ceiling and floor merged, seemingly seamlessly, with sculpted torsos and abs and chests and calves.

“I promised my mom I’d help get ready for Thanksgiving.” Alek retrieved his bright purple shirt with plaid-gray details from the chair by Ethan’s desk, the only pieces of furniture in the room other than the bed, where Ethan remained.

“I hate to point out the obvious, but Thanksgiving isn’t for another week.” Ethan rolled over. “Or is this some weird Armenian thing, like Christmas, that you celebrate at a different time than everyone else in the whole freakin’ world?”

“We Armenians celebrate Thanksgiving just like everyone else in this country, thank you very much. Although, did you know that Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated on the second Monday in October?”

“No, I did not know that.” Ethan sat up, surrendering to Alek’s departure. “You’re going to your grandma’s for Thanks- giving, right?”

“That was the plan.” Alek finished the last buttons on his shirt and grabbed his leather book bag, groaning under its nearing-midterms weight. “But then Nana twisted her ankle, so she decided she wasn’t up to hosting Thanksgiving. I will try to spare you the political saga that ensued as my dad and his two siblings negotiated who would assume the mantle, but suffice to say it involved three instances of blackmail, two of coercion, the reemergence of a fight from twenty years ago when my dad and his older sister were in college that had something to do with a cat, tears, apologies, more tears, and a complicated negotiation involving a credenza that both my dad and his younger brother would like once Nana finally passes to the next world. We’re talking backroom deals that would almost put 45’s presidential administration to shame.”

“And this is sparing me the saga?”

Alek nodded. “The long and short of it is that we will be hosting Thanksgiving this year, so yes—seven days is barely enough time to prepare. My mom took the week off from the UN. THE ENTIRE WEEK. Because she knows that hosting her in-laws is a prime opportunity for Nana to judge my mom’s cooking, housekeeping, and child-rearing. In fact, one of the Sunday-morning news shows theorized that Nana intention- ally twisted her ankle just to have the opportunity to criticize whoever was fool enough to step up.”

Ethan rolled over on his back, defeated. “Are all Armenian families this complicated?”

“From what I hear at church, we’re on the simpler side. My mom has six siblings who all live in the same town in Southern Cali. I’m amazed they haven’t had a Romeo and Juliet–style feud spring up there.” Alek finished tying his shoes. “I’ll see you soon, okay?”

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Author Michael Barakiva

Author Michael Barakiva

About the Author
Michael Barakiva, author of One Man Guy, is a theater director and writer of Armenian/Israeli descent who lives in Manhattan with his husband, Rafael. He is a graduate of Vassar College and the Juilliard School, an avid cook and board-game player, and a soccer player with the New York Ramblers.

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Michael Barakiva
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
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Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – REALM by Alexandrea Weis

REALM Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for REALM, a stand-alone young adult historical romance, by Alexandrea Weis. See below for information on the book, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on her giveaway.

REALM by Alexandrea Weis

REALM by Alexandrea Weis

About the Book
Title: REALM
Author: Alexandrea Weis
Publisher: Vesuvian Books
Release Date: May 14, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Historical Romance
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Based on a true story.

When her homeland is conquered by the mighty Alexander the Great, Roxana—the daughter of a mere chieftain—is torn from her simple life and thrown into a world of war and intrigue.

Terrified, the sixteen-year-old girl of renowned beauty is brought before the greatest ruler the world has ever known. Her life is in his hands; her future his to decide.

Without formal education or noble blood, Roxana is chosen by the Greek conqueror to be his bride. Soon she comes to know profound happiness and unyielding desire in her warrior’s arms.

However, being the king’s consort comes at a heavy price. To survive her husband’s treacherous kingdom, she must endure continuous warfare, deadly plots, jealous rivals, victory-hungry generals, and the stigma of being a barbarian. Persian blood will keep her from claiming the grandest title of all—queen—but her reign will seal the fate of an empire.

History tells his story. This is hers.

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Excerpt
Hephaestion brushed past the guard and followed the familiar route to the back of the spacious tent.

He arrived at an area decorated only with a small wooden desk and some stools. Hunched over and furiously pounding a stylus into a wax tablet was Alexander of Macedon.

“You must be here to report about the goings on atop the rock.”

Alexander looked up, and the intensity of his deep-set gray eyes struck him. Perhaps his square jaw and bulging forehead added to their piercing quality; Hephaestion wasn’t sure, but he’d seen Alexander use his gaze to intimidate many in the past. He wasn’t very tall and had a stocky build with broad shoulders and a thick chest. His ruddy skin, prone to burning in the sun, flushed whenever he was angry, a warning to those who knew him well to stay away. His disheveled, reddish-brown, wavy mane seemed perpetually in need of a good brushing, and his tunics never stayed clean for long. But it was his scars which intrigued the general most. He had one along his left cheek, another on the right side of his forehead, and another across his lower neck. Hephaestion couldn’t remember Alexander without scars. It was as if he had been born that way, a gift from the gods.

“How did it go?”

Hephaestion walked around the desk to Alexander’s side. “You’re chipper, considering you’ve been up for almost two days.”

“You know I hate to sleep. There’s always too much work to do.” Alexander returned his attention to one of the numerous scrolls scattered about his desk. “What news have you brought me?”

Hephaestion read one of the scrolls over Alexander’s shoulder. “Scouts are already on the second rock. Now that we know how to climb the damned things, we should have them under control by nightfall.”

Alexander dropped the stylus to the desk. “And what did you discover on top of the first rock?”

“The family of Baron Oxyartes. They’re now in your custody—his mother and three daughters.” Hephaestion raised his hand, anticipating Alexander’s next question. “Orders have been given that none of the women atop the rock are to be touched on pain of death. The men are well aware of your feelings about rape. At least now you’ll have something to bargain with to get Oxyartes to surrender. Holding the women hostage should speed things along.”

Alexander closed the wax tablet. “Any problems?”

Hephaestion shook his head. “No. They were too afraid to organize an attack. The men and women went screaming when they saw the soldiers arrive at the top. After that, it was pretty much routine.”

“The family of Oxyartes? You saw to their comfort?”

“Of course.” Hephaestion folded his long arms, itching to tell him about the girl. “You won’t believe this, but one of his daughters speaks Greek.”

Alexander’s eyes danced with interest. “Did this daughter, who speaks Greek, say anything to you?”

“It’s not so much what she said but how she said it. Not like a barbarian at all. She had a kind of bearing, a certain dignity I’ve not seen before in these people. She was very …” He hesitated, knowing it would spur his friend’s curiosity.

“What?” Alexander insisted.

Hephaestion grinned. “Spirited.”

He could almost see the wheels turning in Alexander’s mind. He never stopped thinking or planning. Alexander was always one step ahead of everyone else. He had to be. It was the only way to remain king and stay alive.

“Was she pretty or did she have the face of a pig?”

“The girl?” Hephaestion smiled, knowing his answer would please his king. “She was the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen.”

Alexander raised his eyebrows. “What was the name of this beautiful girl who spoke Greek?”

Feeling that nudge of satisfaction at seeing Alexander beguiled, Hephaestion angled closer and whispered, “Roxana.”

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Author Alexandrea Weis

Author Alexandrea Weis

About the Author
Alexandrea Weis, RN-CS, PhD, is a multi-award-winning author of over twenty-seven novels, a screenwriter, ICU Nurse, and historian who was born and raised in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Having grown up in the motion picture industry as the daughter of a director, she learned to tell stories from a different perspective and began writing at the age of eight. Infusing the rich tapestry of her hometown into her novels, she believes that creating vivid characters makes a story moving and memorable. A member of the Horror Writers Association and International Thriller Writers Association, Weis writes mystery, suspense, thrillers, horror, crime fiction, and romance. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans where she is a permitted/certified wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries and rescues orphaned and injured animals.

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Where to Find Alexandrea Weis
Goodreads | Website | FacebookTwitter | Instagram

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Giveaway
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Cover Reveal – THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

THE UNADJUSTEDS Cover Reveal

Author Marisa Noelle is revealing the cover to THE UNADJUSTEDS, a young adult dystopian scifi, releasing November 1, 2019. See below for information on the book and preorder links.

THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

THE UNADJUSTEDS by Marisa Noelle

About the Book
Title: THE UNADJUSTEDS
Author: Marisa Noelle
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian SciFi
Release Date: November 1, 2019
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | The Unadjusteds

Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Silver Melody lives in a world where 80% of the population has modified their DNA. Known as the altereds, those people now possess enhancements like wings, tails, and increased strength or intelligence. Although Silver’s parents created the nanite pill used to deliver these genetic modifications, Silver is proud of her unadjusted state.

However, when the president declares all unadjusteds must take a nanite, Silver has no choice but to flee the city with her father and some friends to prevent the extinction of the unadjusteds.

With Silver’s mother in prison for treason, Silver’s father is the unadjusteds’ only hope at finding a cure. But time is running out as Silver’s father is captured by the president’s almost immortal army. Vicious hellhounds are on Silver’s trail, and her only chance to recover her father involves teaming up with a new group of unlikely friends before all humanity is lost.

 

 

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THE UNADJUSTEDS

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Author Marisa Noelle

Author Marisa Noelle

About the Author
MARISA NOELLE is a writer of young adult and middle grade novels. She leans towards grounded science-fiction, urban fantasy and paranormal but mental health issues are important to her writing too.

Her first book, THE SHADOW KEEPERS is due out JULY 30TH 2019 and her second, THE UNADJUSTEDS, NOVEMBER 1ST 2019. There is also a forthcoming series, THE MERMAID CHRONICLES: SECRETS OF THE DEEP, due at the end of 2019.

Marisa had plenty of ideas for career and still regrets not moving to Hawaii to train dolphins and pretend the real world didn’t exist. Struggling with anxiety led her to the field of psychology. Heavily influenced by underdog movies such as The Karate Kid she realized her mission in life was to help other people, through any medium. Embarking on a psychology degree, she wanted to emulate her hero, Jodie Foster, from Silence of the Lambs and actually tried to secure work experience at Broadmoor. Thankfully she left the idea of criminal profiling behind, but uses many of these aspects in her novels.

Now a full-time novelist, she lives in Surrey, UK with her husband and three children..

Where to find Marisa Noelle
Goodreads Website | Facebook Twitter | Instagram

 

 

PROM-WRECKED Excerpt and Teaser

PROM-WRECKED Cover Reveal

See below for an excerpt and another teaser from PROM-WRECKED, our stand-alone young adult prom-rom-com, now available in ebook and paperback.

PROM-WRECKED by T.H. Hernandez and Jennifer DiGiovanni

About the Book
Title: PROM-WRECKED
Authors: T.H. Hernandez and Jennifer DiGiovanni
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date:
May 6, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Their prom night ended in a jail cell with forty of their closest friends. But that’s hardly the worst thing that happened to them…

When the principal announces prom is canceled this year, senior Riley Hart is determined to save it. Armed with little more than her own enthusiasm, she ends up working closely with Owen Locklear, who is more than completely off-limits. Because he’s the boyfriend of her ex-BFF, Catherine Reed. Still, Owen knows Riley better than almost anyone, and his charming ideas for turning the prom upside-down and backward win Riley over.

Catherine is willing to join Owen and Riley on the prom committee, but only because her legacy as prom queen is at stake. She’s already suffocating under the weight of her parents’ expectations for after senior year, and compared to that, ensuring prom happens should be easy. At least until everything starts to go wrong.

First they lose their deposit. Then they book a band full of octogenarians. And lose their venue… Twice.

Riley will have an unforgettable teenage experience, damn it, if it’s the last thing she does…

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Excerpt #1
RILEY – TWO MONTHS UNTIL PROM

I turn the corner and glance over my shoulder, hoping to catch another glimpse of Owen’s familiar dark brown hair poking above the crowd. When I recognize his spiky-messy style, my breath catches in my chest. With a wave to Catherine, he breaks away and trails behind me, leaving half a hallway between us. I veer off into an empty stairwell and wait.

Eventually, he makes his appearance, towering over me in the cramped space. Although he’s not as big as the basketball players, Owen stands at least six inches taller than me, which means I’m always looking up at him when we cross paths in school. We met during recess on the first day of kindergarten, when we decided to join up with Catherine and fight the imaginary monsters hiding under the playground equipment. Years later, Catherine has found other things to do with her free time, but Owen and I still fight monsters together—virtual ones, in our favorite video game.

“Haven’t caught up with you on Q-Chat lately,” he says, breaking into his familiar wide smile, one that could take down the entire cheerleading squad. Though it’s a struggle, I manage to remain upright. But just barely.

“Sorry, but I’ve been busy.” I speak too fast and nearly drop the bag of tech club pamphlets I printed last night. Talking to Owen in real life always seems to throw me off. It’s much easier to pretend I don’t have a crush on him when we’re battling aliens online.

Faking disappointment, he shakes his head. “Priorities, Riley. Immortal Quest released an update yesterday with an all-new army of zombies. They suck your life force away, and I really need your shields for protection.” His blue eyes brighten as he steps closer. “C’mon, Evil Skater Girl.”

I raise my finger to my lips. “Shhh! We promised never to call each other by our Quest names in school!” No one needs to know about my secret virtual superhero persona. At eighteen, I’m practically a grandma in the Immortal Quest world.

“Yeah, you’re right.” He backs away, darting his eyes toward the hallway, probably checking for his girlfriend. “Just…log on once in a while, okay? Keep me company.”

“Doesn’t Catherine do enough of that?” The words rush from my mouth before I think about them. I really don’t want to know what he and Catherine do when they’re alone together, but for some reason I can’t resist bringing her up, if only to remind myself that he’s in love with the girl who tossed me aside without a second thought way back in middle school.

Owen flashes his smile again. “No one does it like you, ESG.” He hikes his backpack higher on his shoulder and turns to go. Before I call him out on the name thing again, he says, “By the way, did you hear anything about prom being canceled?”

“What? Is that even possible?”

He breaks out in a small smile. “According to Cat, it is.” His smile falters before he picks it back up. “So, you haven’t heard anything?”

“No, but if I do, I’ll let you know.”

With a wave, he ducks around the corner and out of sight. I count to ten before continuing on to my locker.

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crazy looking teenage girls wearing goth inspired clothes with pink and black hair wearing novelty gas mask standing in a shower

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Author T.H. Hernandez

Author T.H. Hernandez

About T.H. Hernandez
T.H. Hernandez is a published author of young adult novels. THE UNION, a futuristic dystopian adventure, was a finalist in the 2015 San Diego book awards in the Young Adult Fiction category. SUPERHERO HIGH, an urban scifi teenage romance, set in San Diego. Her first young adult contemporary co-written with Jennifer DiGiovanni, PROM-WRECKED, releases May 6, 2019.

She thrives on coffee of any kind, though pumpkin spice lattes are her favorite. Her free time is spent hiking, reading, painting, and binge-watching Game of Thrones and Stranger Things. She adores Star Wars, Comic-Con, Doctor Who, Bad Lip Reading videos, and all things young adult, especially the three young adults who share her home.

When She’s not visiting the imaginary worlds inside her head, you can find her in usually sunny San Diego, California with her husband, three teenagers, who are far too tall to be considered children, a bearded dragon, a couple of cats, and a dog who thinks he’s a cat, lovingly referred to as the puppycat.

Where to Find T.H. Hernandez
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram | Amazon | BookBub

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Author Jennifer DiGiovanni

Author Jennifer DiGiovanni

About Jennifer DiGiovanni
Jennifer DiGiovanni is the author of contemporary and light fantasy novels for teens. She’s spent most of her life in the Philadelphia area, except for two wonderful but slightly colder years in Canada and a summer in Cincinnati. When she’s not reading or writing, she likes to travel and try new sports or activities, from archery to ballroom dancing, all in the name of book research.

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Jennifer DiGiovanni
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

 

 

Book Blitz – Excerpt + Giveaway – THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One) by Ashley and Leslie Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY Book Blitz

Welcome to the book blitz for THE RULE OF MANY, the second book in the young adult dystopian series, The Rule of One, by Ashley and Leslie Saunders. See below for information the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on their giveaway.

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: THE RULE OF MANY
Series: The Rule of One #2
Author: Ashley Saunders
Publisher: Skyscape
Release Date: May 3, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Born to a death sentence in a near-future America, rebellious sisters herald a revolution—if they can survive.

Twins Ava and Mira Goodwin defy the Rule of One simply by existing. The single-child law, ruthlessly enforced by Texas’s Governor Roth, has made the sisters famous fugitives and inspirations for the resurgent rebellion known as the Common.

But the relentless governor and his implacable Texas State Guard threaten that fragile hope, as Roth consolidates his power in a bid for ultimate authority.

As Ava and Mira relinquish the relative safety of their Canadian haven to stand against Roth, new allies arise: Owen, a gifted young programmer, impulsively abandons his comfortable life in a moment of compassion, while Zee, an abused labor camp escapee, finds new purpose in resistance.

The four will converge on Dallas for a reckoning with Roth, with nothing less than their destinies—and the promise of a future free from oppression—on the line.

Disobedience means death. But a life worth living demands rebellion.

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Excerpt #2
MIRA

Limos and luxury cars line the extensive circular driveway, stuffed with partygoers ready for the welcoming bash. Mrs. and Mr. Cross have already arrived with much fanfare from their son and his doting employees. I wonder if Ciro’s sisters are here.

I hear him get on the microphone, introducing his unwitting parents onto the stage of the overflowing banquet hall, the governor of Alberta and the mayor of Calgary looking on from the front row.

Everything’s falling nicely into place. If only the man of the hour would show.

I look at my watch: 7:30 p.m. He’s late. Ava’s knee bounces furiously, as if she can shake out her anxiety.

“He’ll come,” I say.

From our hideout in the corner of the foyer, shadowed and easily overlooked, we have the best seats in the house. A perfect vantage point to see and be unseen. Ava scans the budding festivities through the glass walls on our left. I keep my eyes on the glass windows straight ahead, seeing past the dazzling flares from the cars’ headlights, holding out for the first glimpse of the president.

A string quartet begins to play, and an electric energy pulsates through the hotel, enlivening the crowd around us with a giddy exhilaration, and I can’t help but feel it too. Eager, I spring to my feet. I pace up and down our tucked-away corner, checking the time, watching Emery from across the room, waiting on her signal.

“Do you hear that?” Ava asks. She stares up at the ceiling. I move beside her as we listen to the muffled roar of whirling blades slicing the air somewhere above the building.

“A helicopter,” Ava says.

“He’s here.”

We look to Emery, who stands near the entrance, her gaze locked skyward. Guests file past as she removes a headscarf from her pocket, drapes the silk over her distinctive curls, and pulls it into a tight knot at the back of her neck. She folds her right arm over her chest, our cue to move.

I feel, rather than see, Barend steal into place behind us, our long shadow, as we push to the end of the foyer. Pawel detaches himself from the crowd and crosses our path as he follows Emery out the front door. “Lots of luck,” he whispers earnestly. Like luck has anything to do with it. It’s all up to us.

Our target is the oversized clock that consumes the entire wall alongside the vacant concierge desk. Ava stops before the number six, and we slip behind a false door and stride side by side down an empty staff hallway. Three right turns, two left, a final door, and we’re outside.

There are no lights behind the hotel and no people. The night is chilly and moonless, but we find the footpath we were directed to take and make our silent way to the small grove of trees just twenty yards out.

Ten paces in, Ava and I turn from the path and weave through the evergreens until we spot the narrow clearing that is to be our stage. We position ourselves in its center, shoulder to shoulder, and wait. Somewhere to our right, concealed within the trees and darkness, Barend stands guard.

When told of the plan, Emery immediately authorized the private rendezvous. She knows pleading our case face-to-face with the president is the only way. Cameras and screens provide a barrier, Emery said. The media paints you solely as American rebels. Let him see how human you are. With Pawel at her side, Emery is to meet and escort the president here, while Ciro entertains his parents and guests, keeping them safely ignorant inside the banquet hall.

The minutes tick off, and Ava starts to shiver from either the cold or nerves. Or is that me shivering? Ava and I brought no weapons with us, to show good faith. No guns, no knives. Just us, with our naked conviction and hope.

This could be our last stop, a final end to the endless chase. A place to plan and plot and devise our crucial counterattack.

Ava nudges me with a sharp elbow. She points to the trees in front of us. Two distinct shapes emerge, a faint silhouette floating behind.

“Ready?” I whisper needlessly. Ava tightens her jaw, and I ball my hands into white-knuckled fists. I take a big gulp of air and exhale slowly. My breath comes out in swirling smoke, reminding me of a dragon. There’s a fire inside me, and suddenly I feel warm and calm. One look from Ava and I know she feels it too.

We’re ready.

The outlines become faces and bodies. Emery appears first, then President Moore, with Pawel a few steps behind. I stare at Moore, transfixed, my eyes glued to the man who can grant us refuge.

He stumbles forward, as if his own eyes have not yet adjusted to the dark. I search his every feature, looking for any hint of surprise, or shock, or understanding. But his face, though startlingly attractive in the starlight, is blank. Indifferent.

“President Moore,” Emery says, “this is Ava and Mira Goodwin.” He looks at us cross-eyed, his round eyes squinting as he takes us in. We all stand motionless, awaiting his response.

“You don’t look identical to me,” the president finally states, his thin voice magnified in the still night air. “One of you’s slightly taller, the other rounder.”

The leader of the free world opens with an insult. My first reaction is to defend my identicalness. Surprising, when all I’ve ever wanted is to be seen as different from Ava.

“Sir—” Ava and I speak at the same time.

The president laughs. “Ah, there it is.” The ground spins as he turns to leave. “This conversation will be moved to a different setting. Just the twins and me.”

Barend detaches from the shadows. Pawel and Emery enclose my sister and me. Ava grabs my arm, her grip tight enough to bruise.

“We do not agree to any change—” Emery starts, but Moore shouts over her.

“Security!”

Everything shatters, all plans and expectations smashed to pieces.

A gunshot rings out, then two more.

“Run!” Emery yells.

The last thing I see is Ava’s face, twisted in fear and fury.

Then something covers my eyes. My mouth.

I’m thrown over a bulky shoulder, the deafening sounds of a helicopter growing louder with every footfall. With every one of my muffled screams.

I’m shoved against something solid. I reach out, arms flailing, but there’s no one beside me. Ava.

I feel the chopper lift into the sky. Two spinning blades taking me higher and higher away from Common ground.

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: THE RULE OF ONE
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

About the Author
Hailing from the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, Ashley Saunders and Leslie Saunders are award-winning filmmakers and twin sisters who honed their love of storytelling at The University of Texas at Austin. While researching The Rule of One, they fell in love with America’s national parks, traveling the path of Ava and Mira. The sisters can currently be found with their Boston terriers in sunny Los Angeles, exploring hiking trails and drinking entirely too much yerba mate.

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Where to Find Ashley and Leslie Saunders
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Book Release – PROM-WRECKED by T.H. Hernandez and Jennifer DiGiovanni

PROM-WRECKED Cover Reveal

PROM-WRECKED, a stand-alone young adult contemporary romantic comedy, is now live. See below for information on the book, buy links, and a mood board I put together for the book.

PROM-WRECKED by T.H. Hernandez and Jennifer DiGiovanni

About the Book
Title: PROM-WRECKED
Authors: T.H. Hernandez and Jennifer DiGiovanni
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Release Date:
May 6, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA Amazon AU | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo

Synopsis
Their prom night ended in a jail cell with forty of their closest friends. But that’s hardly the worst thing that happened to them…

When the principal announces prom is canceled this year, senior Riley Hart is determined to save it. Armed with little more than her own enthusiasm, she ends up working closely with Owen Locklear, who is more than completely off-limits. Because he’s the boyfriend of her ex-BFF, Catherine Reed. Still, Owen knows Riley better than almost anyone, and his charming ideas for turning the prom upside-down and backward win Riley over.

Catherine is willing to join Owen and Riley on the prom committee, but only because her legacy as prom queen is at stake. She’s already suffocating under the weight of her parents’ expectations for after senior year, and compared to that, ensuring prom happens should be easy. At least until everything starts to go wrong.

First they lose their deposit. Then they book a band full of octogenarians. And lose their venue… Twice.

Riley will have an unforgettable teenage experience, damn it, if it’s the last thing she does…

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PROM-WRECKED Mood Board

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Author T.H. Hernandez

Author T.H. Hernandez

About T.H. Hernandez
T.H. Hernandez is a published author of young adult novels. THE UNION, a futuristic dystopian adventure, was a finalist in the 2015 San Diego book awards in the Young Adult Fiction category. SUPERHERO HIGH, an urban scifi teenage romance, set in San Diego. Her first young adult contemporary co-written with Jennifer DiGiovanni, PROM-WRECKED, releases May 6, 2019.

She thrives on coffee of any kind, though pumpkin spice lattes are her favorite. Her free time is spent hiking, reading, painting, and binge-watching Game of Thrones and Stranger Things. She adores Star Wars, Comic-Con, Doctor Who, Bad Lip Reading videos, and all things young adult, especially the three young adults who share her home.

When She’s not visiting the imaginary worlds inside her head, you can find her in usually sunny San Diego, California with her husband, three teenagers, who are far too tall to be considered children, a bearded dragon, a couple of cats, and a dog who thinks he’s a cat, lovingly referred to as the puppycat.

Where to Find T.H. Hernandez
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram | Amazon | BookBub

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Author Jennifer DiGiovanni

Author Jennifer DiGiovanni

About Jennifer DiGiovanni
Jennifer DiGiovanni is the author of contemporary and light fantasy novels for teens. She’s spent most of her life in the Philadelphia area, except for two wonderful but slightly colder years in Canada and a summer in Cincinnati. When she’s not reading or writing, she likes to travel and try new sports or activities, from archery to ballroom dancing, all in the name of book research.

 

 

 

 

Where to Find Jennifer DiGiovanni
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

 

 

Blog Tour – Excerpt + Giveaway – THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One) by Ashley and Leslie Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY Blog Tour

Welcome to the blog tour for THE RULE OF MANY, the second book in the young adult dystopian series, The Rule of One, by Ashley and Leslie Saunders. See below for information the book and series, buy links, an exclusive excerpt, and details on their giveaway.

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

THE RULE OF MANY (The Rule of One #2) by Ashley Saunders

About the Book – Read for Free with Kindle Unlimited
Title: THE RULE OF MANY
Series: The Rule of One #2
Author: Ashley Saunders
Publisher: Skyscape
Release Date: May 3, 2019
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Synopsis
Born to a death sentence in a near-future America, rebellious sisters herald a revolution—if they can survive.

Twins Ava and Mira Goodwin defy the Rule of One simply by existing. The single-child law, ruthlessly enforced by Texas’s Governor Roth, has made the sisters famous fugitives and inspirations for the resurgent rebellion known as the Common.

But the relentless governor and his implacable Texas State Guard threaten that fragile hope, as Roth consolidates his power in a bid for ultimate authority.

As Ava and Mira relinquish the relative safety of their Canadian haven to stand against Roth, new allies arise: Owen, a gifted young programmer, impulsively abandons his comfortable life in a moment of compassion, while Zee, an abused labor camp escapee, finds new purpose in resistance.

The four will converge on Dallas for a reckoning with Roth, with nothing less than their destinies—and the promise of a future free from oppression—on the line.

Disobedience means death. But a life worth living demands rebellion.

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Excerpt #1
AVA

“You’re back,” I say, rising from my bed. Everyone in the room stands, acknowledging Emery as leader of the Common.

She wears her signature look: an unstructured, slightly oversized yellow coat that ends at her knees. Her rich nut-brown hair is short and wild like Einstein’s, and she’s taller than everyone in her small entourage. The more I’ve studied Emery—my mother’s childhood best friend—during my stay here at the Paramount, the more I’ve discovered she’s not the perfectly straitlaced leader I’d expected her to be. Looking closely, I can see the rough edges that hint at the woman she was before having to bear the weight of being the rebellion’s leader. The leftover holes from a double eyebrow piercing above her left eye, the way she bites the inside of her cheeks when she’s angry, as if withholding a fiery reaction. A poorly healed scar just below her collarbone. It all makes me like her even more.

Emery studies the room, her intent gaze passing over all the young faces eager and willing to carry out her orders, however small. We’re all unified in the reason we’re here with the Common, so far from our homes, and I find an unhappy comfort in the shared white-hot pain of loss. And the anger that comes with it.

“It’s good to see you all again,” Emery says. She nods to each of us in greeting. “May I have the room? I need to speak with Ava and Mira.”

The Games Club immediately disassembles, Barend directing everyone out into the hall. He shuts the door and turns on his heel, returning to his post inside our room.

Three members of Emery’s inner circle remain at her side. They’re all Elders, members who’ve been a part of the Common the longest. Their faces are hardened with world-weariness, and although I’ve never spoken to any of them personally, Pawel tells me they’ve each seen the inside of a prison cell more than once.

The door opens, and a young woman who looks a few years over twenty strides with pure confidence into the room. She stands a short distance from the group, unchallenged by Barend. She must be a new recruit, and an important one if she’s included in Emery’s close circle. The young woman’s jet-black hair is pulled back tightly into two French braids, highlighting her dark eyes with their long, intense lashes. If the eyes truly are a window to the soul, hers has taken more than a few beatings.

Mira clasps Emery’s shoulder in welcome before asking, “Did you find him this time? You’re back early—did something go wrong?”

Countless missions to rescue my father have led to nothing but disappointment. Wherever Roth is hiding his former Family Planning Director, he’s making damn sure he’ll never be found.

All four Common Elders lower their heads. Something did go wrong. Horribly wrong.

My stomach drops like a heavy anchor cut loose into the sea.

“What happened?” I demand, stepping forward. His execution date has been moved up. The Guard caught wind of our extraction plans and changed his location . . .

Emery raises her head, biting the inside of her cheeks, hard. “It’s with great sorrow that I have to inform you of your father’s murder,” she tells us straight. “I am sorry that we could not get to Darren in time.”

He’s dead. My father’s dead. I’ve learned to always prepare for bad news, but I wasn’t prepared for this.

Through a haze of salted tears, I lurch backward. Mira catches me, and I hold on to my sister tight—our combined strength the only thing that keeps me from shattering against the floor.

“No, no, no . . . you said Roth wouldn’t kill him!” I cry. “You said he wouldn’t risk turning the people to our side!”

“What about the stay of execution!” Mira says in disbelief.

“The official statement from the Governor’s Mansion is that it was a suicide,” Emery says. “Roth made a speech, weaving a story that Darren hanged himself with his bedsheets during the night, leaving behind a note detailing his great regret for his traitorous crimes against his country and its people.”

A cold panic rushes through my body, and I feel faint. Mira shakes uncontrollably beside me. I turn to my sister, and both our green eyes scream, Lies!

Father would never, never take his own life. He would fight until the bitter end to get back to us.

“The note said his greatest shame of all was raising illegal twin daughters who turned into dangerous traitors themselves.”

Roth is using our own father against us. Bile rises to my throat, and my knees falter.

Emery seizes both our shoulders, pulling us close, making sure we listen.

“We know both the suicide and the note are bullshit. We know just before sunrise, Roth entered Darren’s cell and shot your father in cold blood.”

I try to break free of Emery and my sister. I can’t breathe. I need space for my heartache, but Emery grips my shoulder harder.

“Listen to me. We have the surveillance video. Your father’s killing will not be buried. Roth’s corruption will be exposed—another link in his chain of lies. Your father will continue to help the cause even in death, as your mother did.”

“The video could be fake, too, just like the suicide note. He could still be alive!” I find myself pleading.

The new recruit with the French braids steps forward, shaking her head. Her eyes soften with sympathy. “I wish that were true.”

She pulls something from her jacket’s inner pocket and carefully opens her palm: a metal capsule the size of my fingernail.

Father’s microchip.

“I was held in the same prison as your father,” the young woman explains, her steady voice struggling to break through the fog of despair that separates me from everything else in the room. “While the Common arrived too late to rescue your father, they were able to rescue me.”

Who is this person? Why was she imprisoned, and how did she gain access to my father’s chip? It’s always a never-ending maze of questions.

“Scan the chip,” Mira says, her voice hollow.

Barend produces a microchip scanner from his duty belt—he always seems to have the necessary tool or weapon—and hands the device to Emery to scan.

Ping.

A death record pops up on the chip scanner’s screen:

Name: DR. DARREN JAMES GOODWIN

Status: DECEASED

Cause of death: SUICIDE

Burial location: UNKNOWN

The only thing I have left of my father is this tiny scrap of metal with his blood still on it. Where is his body?

I want to scream.

“It’s Darren’s chip. It has been authenticated,” Emery declares with full conviction. “Skye Lin has been fighting for the Common’s cause for half her life. She turned a Guard at the prison, who gave her the chip and surveillance video in the midst of our rescue mission.”

Skye Lin. The assassin who poisoned two states’ Family Planning Directors and made an unsuccessful attempt on my own father’s life. I’ve never seen her face; after she was arrested in Dallas five years ago, Roth banned images of the teenage murderer across all media outlets. Before Mira and me, criminals were not lionized in Texas; they did not become famous. They were thrown in dark cells and never heard from again.

“I didn’t know your dad was a member of the Common,” Skye insists. “I wasn’t trying to kill him. I was trying to kill his office.” The Family Planning Division.

With that, she turns and walks out, leaving Mira and me drowning in confusion.

“I want to see the surveillance video,” Mira says from beside me.

Taken aback, I turn to face my sister. “You want to watch our father’s murder?”

“I have to see it for myself.” She looks up at me, her eyes red and glassy with anguish. “We were raised on so many secrets, Ava. I just have to see.”

I shake my head. “I can’t.”

As I move to leave the room—I need the open air; the hurt inside me suddenly seems too large for this crowded space—Emery holds up her hand to stop me.

“We leave for the Common’s headquarters in the morning—Paramount Point Lodge. You both are needed there. I can explain more tomorrow, but for now take the time to grieve.” She lowers her head in a respectful bow. “Your father was a brave man.”

Chills run through my body. Rayla had said those same words.

He wants a better future for you both.

I close my eyes and remember Father’s greatest lesson: it takes iron to sharpen iron. Metal bullets forged my father’s death into a cast-iron weight that sits at the bottom of my heart. To be brave like my father, I must endure the painful process of honing. I must become so sharp that no one can touch me or mine again.

“Show me the surveillance video,” Mira demands once more.

“It will not be easy to watch, but the choice is yours to make,” Emery says.

Visions of my father tied helplessly to a chair, Roth standing over him with a gun, a smug smile on his lips . . .

No! I rip open my eyes and push past Emery, away from my sister. Barend gets out of my path, allowing me to throw open the door, and I stumble into the hall alone. Without any clear direction in mind, I head toward the stairwell. Anger clouds my vision; my knees are shaky, and I lean on the wall to stay standing. My entire world feels upside down, spinning out of control.

Bam. My shoulder slams into someone, jolting my body back upright.

“I’m sorry,” I say automatically.

But sharp-edged things don’t apologize. They just cut right through. I steel myself and keep going, not looking back, continuing to drag my wobbly legs down the hallway to the exit.

“No, I’m sorry,” a tentative voice says behind me. Pawel. “I’m sorry about your dad. I just heard the news.” Intensity seeps into his words. “At least he died for a reason. You can be proud.”

His words shoot at me like bullets, a gut shot with no exit wound, and I stop short. I wrap my arms around my waist—like that could stop the bleeding—and peer inside the room Pawel just exited.

A group of kids, no older than eleven or twelve, huddle on the floor around a tablet screen. Barend would be livid if he caught them with this smuggled technology. As I wonder fleetingly what their punishment would be for risking the Common’s safety, one of the kids’ heads tilts to the side, giving me a full view of the screen.

My father’s face is splashed across an underground virtual newscast. The kids watch, enraptured as a computer-generated anchor with blue hair and violet eyes gives a breathless account of how the disgraced Family Planning Director shockingly took his own life out of shame.

“My brother says it’s all a conspiracy,” a girl with a high ponytail says. It’s Ellie, Pawel’s adopted sister. “A Goodwin would never give up.”

Another girl spies me standing in the doorway, her breath catching in her throat. She nudges the boy sitting beside her, and the entire group turns to stare at me, their mouths slightly open in reverence.

“Our parents sacrificed themselves for Ellie and me too,” Pawel says quietly. A crushing sadness marks his face at the memory. Pawel’s four-person family was illegal, even if Ellie wasn’t related by blood. Whatever hardships he experienced that led him to the Common will haunt him the rest of his life.

All at once my sharp edges soften with empathy.

I flick my gaze back to my own father on the newscast. They chose a photograph of him in his stately dress uniform. He looks strong and proud and so violently alive it hurts.

I scan the youthful faces of my unexpected audience. Ellie rises and holds out her forearm, fist curled into a tight ball, like Mira and I did at the end of our hijacked newscast. She’s petite but fierce, her oval-shaped hazel eyes reflecting her tremendous appetite for defiance at such a young age.

Everyone around her stands and does the same.

Tattoos, drawn with identical dark ink, cover their right wrists, each one a unique emblem of their own resistance: a charging bull, two thick parallel lines, a scorpion ready to strike, a beautifully patterned sun with a face inside.

Next to me Pawel lifts his shirtsleeve, revealing his own tattoo of a tree with thick roots sheltering the letter E.

Our spark worked. The flame of revolution spread like wildfire just as Rayla said it would, and now even the next generation can feel its burn.

My heart races wild inside my chest. I hold down my wrist, fist clenched.

“Resist much,” I say.

“Obey little,” their voices answer in unison.

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Get Caught Up on the Series

Book 1: THE RULE OF ONE
Goodreads | Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

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Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

Authors Ashley and Leslie Saunders

About the Author
Hailing from the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, Ashley Saunders and Leslie Saunders are award-winning filmmakers and twin sisters who honed their love of storytelling at The University of Texas at Austin. While researching The Rule of One, they fell in love with America’s national parks, traveling the path of Ava and Mira. The sisters can currently be found with their Boston terriers in sunny Los Angeles, exploring hiking trails and drinking entirely too much yerba mate.

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Where to Find Ashley and Leslie Saunders
Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway