*Excerpt Reveal* Only A Breath Apart- Katie McGarry

Would you dare to defy destiny? Are our destinies written in stone? Do we become nothing more than the self-fulfilling prophecies of other people’s opinions? Or can we dare to become who we believe we were born to be?

“A gorgeous, heartfelt journey of redemption and love” (Wendy Higgins), ONLY A BREATH APART is a young adult contemporary novel from critically acclaimed Katie McGarry. “Haunting, authentic, and ultimately hopeful” (Tammara Webber), ONLY A BREATH APART will be available on all retailers on January 22, 2019!

     About ONLY A BREATH APART:

 

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Jesse dreams of working the land that’s been in his family forever. But he’s cursed to lose everything he loves most.

Scarlett is desperate to escape her “charmed” life. But leaving a small town is easier said than done.

Despite their history of heartbreak, when Jesse sees a way they can work together to each get what they want, Scarlett can’t say no. Each midnight meeting between Jesse and Scarlett will push them to confront their secrets and their feelings for each other.

 

Excerpt:

SCARLETT

I’m defying my parents by attending a funeral. Reckless and adventurous teenage behavior, I know. Most seventeen-year-olds lie to their parents so they can go on a date with a forbidden boy or attend a party where there will be questionable behavior. Me? I’m outright lying to my dad, and it’s because Jesse Lachlin’s grandmother died.

The entire way here I’ve questioned my sanity, but I don’t know how I’d live with myself if I stayed home. Jesse Lachlin used to be my childhood best friend. We were inseparable. We had the type of friendship people strive to have, and then, a few years ago, he cut me so deeply that I still bleed. But ten-year-old me would have never abandoned a hurting Jesse. So today I’m not only honoring the memory of Jesse’s grandmother, but also the memory of our dead friendship.

On my way to the funeral, the high grass of the field swats at my legs, but I don’t mind the sting. I love walking barefoot in grass, I love the smell of the earth and I love that brief feeling of freedom open spaces can provide.

It’s the dog days of August. The type of hot that starts when the sun rises and makes you sweat through your clothes within minutes. While my skin and palms are on fire, the pads of my feet are cool against the dirt. The heat is unwelcome, but the sky is deep blue and the sun is bright, and for that, I can be grateful.

Walking out of the field, I stop short of crossing the one-lane road to slip on the flats that dangle from my fingertips. My mother would be mortified if she knew I was entering a church in a cotton daisy-print sundress. It’s not one of the dresses with stiff fabric and impossible back zippers she would have picked for me at an overpriced department store. It’s the type that’s machine-washable and breathable. The type of dress Jesse’s grandmother would have given her stamp of approval.

I can practically hear my mother heavily sigh and mumble my name, Scarlett, as if it were her personal, private curse word. Mom believes there’s a certain way to dress and behave, and I’m breaking all sorts of her rules today. Watch out, world. I’m officially rebellious.

I smile to myself because I’m the opposite of rebellious. For the last few years, I’ve followed every rule. I’m the teacher’s pet and the girl with straight A’s. I’m the poster child of perfection, and have earned every snarky ice princess comment Jesse’s friends whisper about me in the school hallways because he and I no longer speak.

There are only six cars in the parking lot of the white church, and that makes me frown. I thought more people would have wanted to attend. Jesse’s mud-covered pickup is there, and so is an unnaturally clean black Mercedes that belongs to his uncle. This ought to be interesting. Jesse and his uncle have a mutual hate for each other that runs deeper than any root of any tree.

Movement to my right and I slowly turn my head. Shivers run down my spine at the sight of Glory Gardner. Even though I’m seventeen and too old for ghost stories, I still can’t shake the ones regarding this woman. Girls would whisper over lunch boxes that Glory was a witch. As I grew older, I understood that witch meant con artist. She claims she can read palms, tarot cards and “sees” spirits from beyond the dead. All for a glorious fee.

She’s a beautiful woman—long dirty blond hair that’s untamed, even in a bun, and she has an eclectic taste in clothing. Today she wears a white peasant shirt and a flowing skirt made of material that shimmers in the sun.

Glory watches me like I watch her, with morbid curiosity. I knew her as a child, back when Jesse and I ran wild in the fields near her home, but we haven’t talked in years.

She stands under the shade of a towering weeping willow. There are lots of those trees around here. Mom says it’s because there is too much water in the ground. I say it’s because the people in this town have cried too many tears. Mom doesn’t like my answer.

I tilt my head toward the church, an unspoken question if Glory will be joining me. She shakes her head no. I’m not shocked. According to rumors, Glory will go up in flames if she enters the house of God. But who knows? Maybe I will, too.

The church is one of those picturesque, historical, one-room school buildings squeezed between a cornfield on one side and a hay field on the other. A huge steeple with a bell attempts to reach the heavens, but like anything created by a human, it falls tragically short.

The foreboding wooden door makes no noise as I open it, and I’m able to slip in without a huge, squeaking announcement. Orange light filters in through the dark stained glass windows, and its struggling beams reveal millions of dancing particles of dust.

On the altar, there’s no casket, but there is an urn. My heart dips—Suzanne is dead. I used to wish she were my grandmother, and many times, she treated me as if I belonged to her. Suzanne was the epitome of love, and the world feels colder now that she’s gone.

Choosing a spot in the back, I drop into a pew, and as I scan the church my stomach churns. How is it possible that this place is so barren?

Besides the Funeral Brigade, or the FB, as I like to refer to them, there aren’t many people here. The FB are the older group of woman who attend every funeral in our small town even if they didn’t know the person. Attending funerals isn’t my idea of fun, but who am I to judge?

The FB sit directly behind the one person the town believes to be the lone sane member of the Lachlin family, probably because he isn’t blood related—Jesse’s uncle.

On the left side of the church is Jesse. Only Jesse. And that causes a painful pang in my chest. Where are his stinking friends? The anarchists in training who follow Jesse wherever he goes? Where is the rest of the town? Yes, Suzanne was polarizing, but still, where is any respect?

Quietly, so I don’t draw attention to myself, I slip from the right set of pews to the left. Someone should be on Jesse’s side, and it’s sad it has to be me.

A door at the front of the church opens, and the pastor walks out from the addition the church build on as a small office ten years ago. I would have thought any pastor assigned to this place would be as ancient as this church. Sort of like an Indiana Jones Knights Templar scenario where he lives forever as long as he stays inside. But no, he’s the youngest pastor from the main, newer church in town. His name is Pastor Hughes, and he’s a thirty-something black man with a fit build who is just cute enough that he should be starring in a movie.

The pastor looks up, and he flinches as if startled. I peek over my shoulder then sigh. Clearly, he’s surprised to see me. Flipping fantastic.

His reaction, and the fact he won’t stop staring, causes every person to turn their heads. Lovely. I’ve had dreams like this where I enter a room and become the center of attention. Only in my dreams it’s at school, it’s my classmates and I’m naked, but still, this is disconcerting.

Eventually, the FB and Jesse’s uncle return their attention to the front, but Jesse doesn’t. He rests his arm on the back of the pew, and it’s hard to ignore that he’s made me his sole focus, but I do my best to act as if I don’t notice.

To help, I concentrate on what my mom taught me as a child—to make sure the skirt of my dress is tucked appropriately so that my thighs don’t show. I then fold my hands in my lap and straighten to a book-on-head posture. I can be the ice princess people claim me to be.

Five pews separate me and Jesse, and it’s not nearly enough. My cheeks burn under his continued inspection. Jesse has done this a handful of times since our freshman year. Glance at me as if I’m someone worth looking at, someone worth laughing with a little too loud and smiling with a little too much. Then he remembers who I am and snaps his gaze to someone else.

But he’s not looking away now.

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      Katie McGarry Bio:

Image result for katie mcgarry

Katie McGarry was a teenager during the age of grunge and boy bands and remembers those years as the best and worst of her life. She is a lover of music, happy endings, reality television, and is a secret University of Kentucky basketball fan.

Katie is the author of full-length YA novels, PUSHING THE LIMITS, DARE YOU TO, CRASH INTO YOU, TAKE ME ON,  BREAKING THE RULES, and NOWHERE BUT HERE and the e-novellas, CROSSING THE LINE and RED AT NIGHT. Her debut YA novel, PUSHING THE LIMITS was a 2012 Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction, a RT Magazine’s 2012 Reviewer’s Choice Awards Nominee for Young Adult Contemporary Novel, a double Rita Finalist, and a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick. DARE YOU TO was also a Goodreads Choice Finalist for YA Fiction and won RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Best Book Award for Young Adult Contemporary fiction in 2013.

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*Cover Reveal* Blastaway by Melissa Landers

Today Melissa Landers and Rockstar Book Tours are revealing the cover and an exclusive content for BLASTAWAY, her new Middle Grade Sci-Fi which releases Summer 2019! Check out the awesome cover and the excerpt!

On to the reveal!

Blastaway_revised-20180917_cover2Title: BLASTAWAY

Author: Melissa Landers

Pub. Date: Summer 2019

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion

Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Pages: ?

Find it: Goodreads

Summary: 

Pitched as “Home Alone in space,” a young science prodigy who runs away in his family spaceship must team up with a plucky mutant to save the Earth from destruction.

Scheduled for publication Summer 2019. 


Exclusive Excerpt!

At some point, I must have fallen asleep.

I say that for two reasons. First, my chin was wet with drool, and I hardly ever slobber on myself when I’m awake. And second, I was no longer on Earth.

I sat bolt upright and stared out the window as distant stars whizzed past in a blur. There were no planets in sight, and judging by the swirling purple nebula ahead of me, this wasn’t the way to Nana’s house. I checked the navigation screen and felt my mouth drop open. The flashing beacon that represented my ship was halfway between Earth and Fasti.

(So you see, it is totally possible to steal a spaceship on accident.)

I guess my hand hit the EXECUTE button when I fell asleep. And because it would take just as long for me to turn around and go home as it would to finish my journey, it made sense to keep going, right? Either way, my parents would ground me into the afterlife, so I might as well earn the sentence, right?

Right.

An electric thrill rushed through my veins when I thought about the possibilities that lay ahead of me. Anything could happen on this trip. Literally anything. I could discover a brand-new element. Or meet a secret race of aliens. Or invent a new energy source. Or eat so much chocolate that I puked. Either way, I had complete freedom to make this journey into whatever I wanted, and once I realized that, there was no freaking way I could turn back. It was like the universe had dropped a gift in my lap, a gift I had no intention of returning.

I wiped the drool off my chin and smiled.

“Hold onto your stars, Fasti. Here I come.” 


About Melissa:

Melissa_Author_PhotoMelissa Landers is a former teacher who left the classroom to pursue other worlds. A proud sci-fi geek, she isn’t afraid to wear her Princess Leia costume in public—just ask her kids. She lives just outside Cincinnati in the town of Loveland, “Sweetheart of Ohio.”

Website | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Goodreads

 

 

Christmas with the Band- Michelle Hazen Tour & Giveaway

Michelle Hazen’s CHRISTMAS WITH THE BAND Review & Excerpt Tour

 Music legend Ava has more houses than most people have shoes, but what present is good enough for your rock star boyfriend who gives you orgasms on demand all year long? Find out in CHRISTMAS WITH THE BAND by Michelle Hazen, the final entry in her beloved Sex, Love, and Rock & Roll series. Fans of holiday romances will love this funny but heart-tugging story about friendship, family, forgiveness, and fitting in.

“Dark, delicious, and dripping with voice.” —Katie Golding, Author of Order Up

“Hazen’s use of the frantic energy of a rock band’s tour contrasts perfectly with the slow and seductive dance this couple engages in. Readers are sure to enjoy following The Red Letters on their drama-fueled climb to fame.” —RT Book Review

“Wowwwwww! This was a beautifully written, compelling, captivating read.” —Books according to Abby Blog

6 Xmas v2_ebook Title:  Christmas With The Band

Author: Michelle Hazen

Release Date: September 3, 2018

Publisher: Self-published

Series: Sex, Love, and Rock & Roll #3.5

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Page Count: 46

 Synopsis:

 All Jax wants for Christmas is for his favorite people to get along. So when he takes Ava home for the holidays, she vows to finally make peace with his drummer. What she gets instead is a house fire, house arrest, and the kind of dinner none of them will ever forget.

This comic romp of a holiday story wraps up the world of the Sex, Love and Rock and Roll series in a red lacy bow. Click now to have Christmas with the Band!

 

Goodreads → http://bit.ly/2Mcvxip

 

Buy Now: Amazon | iTunes | B&N | Kobo

Amazon → https://amzn.to/2M31aaS

Barnes & Noble → https://goo.gl/HXSsPV

Kobo → https://goo.gl/LPtxYs

ITunes → https://goo.gl/eUkUBd

Christmas With The Band Excerpt

Copyright © 2018 Michelle Hazen

 

Jax pulls to the curb, and my heart beats so fast my vision goes swimmy at the edges. Oh, shit, we’re already at his bandmates’ holiday party and I’m not ready yet.

I turn wide eyes to look at the over-decorated house. Somehow I never pictured Jera’s family as inflatable Santa people.

“This isn’t their place.” Jax tips my chin toward him, the callouses from his frets soothing against my skin. “Ava, I’d rather turn around right now than take you someplace where you won’t be comfortable. Especially not on Christmas Eve. Just say the word and we’ll go back to my condo.” He smiles, the tilt of it all wicked promise though his sky-colored eyes are whisper gentle: my soft place to land, always. “I’ll even Photoshop Justin Bieber’s head onto some pictures of chipmunks, the way you like.”

I laugh in spite of myself. “Okay, as awesome as that sounds, I’m not taking you away from your band family at Christmas.”

“Oh, great! Let’s get going, then.” Jax reaches for the gearshift and my stomach drops out through the floorboards of the car. I stop his hand and my eyes guiltily collide with his knowing ones. I just walked right into that bluff, damn it.

“Okay, you’re right. This was a terrible idea. Why don’t I just drop you off, I’ll go hide in your beautiful condo, and we can meet up after?” My heartbeat is like a rabid butterfly trying to escape my ribcage. Christ, I’m being such a coward right now.

It’s not like I haven’t been living knuckle to knuckle with these people for most of the year. It’s just…that was our concert tour. This is their town.

It’s Jax’s real life, and I haven’t claimed my place in it.

He starts to speak just as I say, “No, screw it. We’re going. We’re going together and it will be fun and festive, so help me God, or I will cut a bitch.”

Enter to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card! Three-Runner Ups will win eBook copies of A CRUEL KIND OF BEAUTIFUL, PLAYING THE PAUSES, & INSTATIABLE!

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 MichelleAuthorPhotoRetouch_Full-Resolution copy   About Michelle Hazen:

Michelle Hazen is a nomad with a writing problem. Years ago, she and her husband ducked out of the 9 to 5 world and moved into their truck. As a result, she wrote most of her books with solar power in odd places, including a bus in Thailand, a golf cart in a sandstorm, and a beach in Honduras. Currently, she’s addicted to The Walking Dead, hiking, and Tillamook cheese.

Follow Michelle:  Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | Pinterest | Instagram

Siren’s Curse- Katee Robert Tour & Giveaway

SIREN’S CURSE, a dark and haunting standalone novel in the multi-author series, The Sea King’s Daughters is LIVE!

 In SIREN’S CURSE by NYT Bestselling Author, Katee Robert, a cursed mermaid has lost her powers and her ability to shapeshift and the only creature that can help her reclaim herself is one who may mean her the most harm…

Add SIREN’S CURSE to your TBR pile on Goodreads then keep reading to get a sneak peek excerpt and your chance enter the giveaway to win one of TEN (10) eBook copies of SIREN’S CURSE!

Kateerobert Title: Siren’s Curse

Author: Katee Robert

Genre: Urban Fantasy

Release Date: August 13, 2018

Publisher: Indie

Series: The Sea King’s Daughters

Page Count: 76 pages

                                                    Format: Digital

                                                    ASIN: B07DJK2HQR

Synopsis:

Lorelei Fischer is cursed. A mermaid who can’t shapeshift, can’t create portals and is no longer fully who she was meant to be. Too ashamed to admit how badly she failed to her sisters, she takes refuge in a small town in northern California and opens a used bookstore. With no way to regain what she’s lost, she resigns herself to a life half-lived.

After nearly drowning under the dark of the new moon, there’s no escaping the truth. She’s being hunted, and this enemy will stop at nothing to take her.

Lorelei must find a way to reclaim her birthright and her abilities before it’s too late. Because the sea holds more monsters than she could have dreamed—and one of them wants her dead.

Look for other stories in this exciting Urban Fantasy series from Philippa Ballantine, Stacia D. Kelly, Lauren Harris, and Asa Maria Bradley.

Available at: 

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2syiT2e

 

Siren’s Curse Excerpt

Copyright © 2018 Katee Robert

I start for home, the wind and water turning my hair into blond snakes that whip around my head. Less than a quarter mile to my house and it might as well be on the moon. I pull my jacket tighter around my body and pick up my pace. Each harsh breath makes my chest ache, reminding me about the way this morning started.
I shouldn’t be alive.
There’s no other way to say it. When I closed my eyes, parted my lips, and inhaled… I made my choice. That I hadn’t died. That I woke up on the beach… Someone put me there, though I can’t begin to guess their purpose.
Lorelei.
I jump and spin in a circle, searching for the source of the voice. There’s no one in sight. There isn’t even a single pair of headlights on the road. Just the trees whipping back and forth in front of me and the beach at my back. I turn slowly to face the beach—the water—and squint into the driving rain. No part of me is dry at this point, so I might as well investigate.
Lorelei.
There it is again, barely more than a whisper on the wind. Calling me back to the water.
I take a step before what’s left of my self-preservation kicks in. “No.” I don’t mean to say the word aloud, but it settles something inside me. I am not some weak-willed creature to be drawn in by curiosity. Whatever has the power to reach me here on dry land is something I want no part of. “Get the fuck out of my head.” That’s where I must be hearing him. There’s no way he’s actually speaking to me on the wind.
Whoever he is.
I have something you want.
I freeze. The faintest tugging in my stomach dials it up a notch. It never really goes away, even when I’m sequestered in the bookstore and surrounded by earth instead of sea. That tug tells me the exact direction my necklace—my powers—lay. I never get more than a hint of water that’s such a dark blue, it might as well be black, or an intense pressure that conveys exactly how far from the surface my necklace is kept. Too deep for humans and their machines.
Too deep for me.
I start for the beach before I can think better of it. For over two years, I’ve been missing a vital piece of myself, walking around as only half of a whole. I might not be completely helpless in my current state, but I’m easy pickings for any supernatural creature who decides to gun for me. Last night more than proved that the sea will take me, one way or another
 It might as well be on my terms.
Lightning flashes, bright enough that spots dance over my vision for the several seconds of silence before thunder rattles my bones. The storm isn’t directly overhead yet, but it will be soon. I’m a damn fool if I’m still out by that point.
I yank off my boots and socks and toss them onto the beach just out of reach of the waves coming faster and faster. One step, maybe two, and I’ll be submerged up to my ankles. My finding power will spiral out of me, instinctively seeking the one item I want more than anything in this goddamn world.
Not my sisters.
Not even the portal home.
No, what I want more than anything is to be whole again.
I should just turn around and go home. Whoever this voice belongs to, they mean nothing good for me. There’s a proper way to reach out, and it’s not by drawing a finless one of the merfolk into the ocean and nearly drowning her human body. Stepping into the ocean will boost what little magic I have left, and it will create a clear channel for him to speak to me.
I take that first step, and then the second. My power streaks out into the deep and then rebounds, slamming me with a vision of my necklace. It’s different than it’s been in the past. Barely any pressure to speak of. Blue-gray water that stretches for miles and miles and miles around without encountering land. A vaguely fishy taste on my tongue.
Tentacles.
And then his voice is in my head, curling through me in a way that’s just shy of being invasive. Hello, pretty.
Telepathy isn’t one of my skills, but apparently, his is so strong that it allows me to fire off a reply. Tell me what you want and get out of my head.
His chuckle is pure predator. More like I have something you want.
Surely not. The Deep Dwellers, sworn enemy to my people, wouldn’t be so foolish as to lose a coup like my necklace. In the endless history of wars between our kind, I can’t think of a single instance when they’ve managed to steal the very essence of what one of the merfolk is—to sever one of us from our power. It’s priceless. They wouldn’t have traded it—would have, in fact, guarded it with their lives. So why does this monster in my head have access to it?
I cross my arms over my chest and tell myself that the shiver racking my body is from the cold. I’m listening.
Come to me.
That surprises a laugh out of me. Pass.
You’d turn down a chance to regain yourself?
I’d turn down a chance to walk into a trap like an idiot. I shake my head. This is a waste of time. I turn for the shore when power slams into me, sending me to my knees. The water rushes in—or maybe I rush out—and the next thing I know, I’m up to my chest.
Don’t be a fool.
This deep, I finally have a sense of him. He must have held himself back up to this point because he’s positively ancient. Older than anything I’ve ever felt—even my father—and so powerful that pain lances through my head. It would be so easy to give him what he wants, to stop fighting, to…
“Get the fuck out of my head!” I sprint for dry land. This deep, it’s more of a fast wade, but I curse and spit and fight the pull of the magic current trying to yank me off my feet. “No, no, no, no, get your stupid magic off me!
He releases me all at once and I fly the last few feet and land in a heap just past the now-normal waves. I sit up and scrub sand from my face. Even without the water connection, his dark amusement slithers through me. Another time, pretty. His presence recedes faster than any tide, leaving the storm just a normal storm.
It’s official—I’m in even worse trouble than I could have imagined.

 

Enter to win one of TEN (10) eBook copies of SIREN’S CURSE!

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   KateeRob3ert       About Katee Robert

New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Katee Robert learned to tell her stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her 2015 title, The Marriage Contract, was a RITA finalist, and RT Book Reviews named it ‘a compulsively readable book with just the right amount of suspense and tension.”  When not writing sexy contemporary and romantic suspense, she spends her time playing imaginary games with her children, driving her husband batty with what-if questions, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse.

 

Connect with Katee at: Website | Facebook | Twitter| GoodReads | Instagram | BookBub

 

Someone I Used To Know- Patty Blount Blog Tour & Giveaway

It’s been two years since the night that changed Ashley’s life and two years of hell for Derek. When it all comes to a head at Thanksgiving, will these siblings be able to salvage their relationship? From the award-winning author of Some Boys comes an unflinching examination of rape culture that delves into a family torn apart by sexual assault.

About Someone I Used To Know:

 

9781492632818-300RGB (1)Title: Someone I Used To Know

Author: Patty Blount

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

Release Date: August 7, 2018

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Format: Digital eBook / Print

Digital ISBN: B07C933LP6

                                                    Print ISBN: 9781492632818

Synopsis:

It’s been two years since the night that changed Ashley’s life. Two years since she was raped by her brother’s teammate. And a year since she sat in a court and watched as he was given a slap on the wrist sentence. But the years have done nothing to stop the pain.

It’s been two years of hell for Derek. His family is totally messed up and he and his sister are barely speaking. He knows he handled it all wrong. Now at college, he has to come to terms with what happened, and the rape culture that he was inadvertently a part of that destroyed his sister’s life.

When it all comes to a head at Thanksgiving, Derek and Ashley have to decide if their relationship is able to be saved. And if their family can ever be whole again.

Add to your TBR list:  Goodreads

Available:  Amazon  |  Barnes and Noble  |  Kobo  |  iTunes

Excerpt:

Copyright© 2018 Someone I Used To Know

Patty Blount

This novel is a companion story to my award-winning SOME BOYS. In this scene, Ian Russell, one of the main characters in Some Boys, meets Derek Lawrence in SOMEONE I USED TO KNOW.

~*~

Derek

A knot forms in my gut, a thick and oily clot of guilt. I sink on to the first bench I spot, clutching my middle and trying like hell not to puke. Damn it, I wish to hell I’d beaten the snot out of Victor Patton.

Came close to it.

“Hey, man.”

I twitch and find some guy sitting beside me. No idea where he came from. He’s older than I am, but not by much. Mid-twenties, maybe? Dark hair, dark eyes, some serious muscle.

I nod and shift away, willing my stomach to settle down.

“I’m gonna say something to you,” the guy says. “And you can tell me to buzz off, or you can listen. I see you sitting here, green around the gills, gripping one of those rally flyers, and see a look on your face I know well.”

I shift back to study him. He meets my gaze without flinching, and there’s something in his tone that tells me he’s not kidding.

“Somebody you love got assaulted,” he says, and before I can say anything—before I can even think of something to say—he adds, “Me too.”

I stare at him in disbelief. Are we supposed to do some kind of male bonding over rape…some sort of weird bro hug and then share our feelings? That kink in my gut unclenches, and my breakfast comes up and out. I manage to turn away before I ruin this guy’s day and spew into the bushes behind the bench. It takes a few minutes. When I’m finally empty and want to crawl into the gutter to die, the guy shoves a bottle of water into my field of vision.

“Take it. Keep it.”

Grateful, I crack the seal, chug, and rinse out my mouth. Then I take a nice gulp, sit back on the bench, and wipe my mouth. “Thanks,” I offer a few minutes later, when I’m sure I’m not dying.

“Yeah, no big.”

There’s a long pause. “Girlfriend?” he asks after a minute. And it takes me another minute to figure out he’s asking who I know that got raped. I shake my head.

“Sister.”

“Oh, man. I’m sorry.”

I only nod. What else is there to say? In silence, we watch the perky girl with the clipboard chase down two guys on Rollerblades to sign up for the rally.

He snorts out a laugh. “That girl has some serious fun attitude.”

I laugh, too. “That’s an oxymoron, no?”

Shrugging, he says, “Maybe. Never could keep those lit terms straight.”

That makes me wonder about him. “You’re not a student?”

“No,” he admits. “I graduated a few years ago. Degree in engineering. I work in the city now.”

“So what are you doing here?”

He sighs and looks back to the quad where Perky Girl’s got another pair of guys on the hook for rally duty. “Over there. Under the Rock Stock tent. Black boots.”

I scan the area, find the tent, and see a bunch of people under it. But the black boots do it for me. The girl is hot, like off-the- charts hot. Long wild hair, dark sunglasses, jeans, and a black shirt that’s held together with a series of metal rings. She looks like the lead singer from some hard rock band.

“Oh! I’m sorry. Was she—”

“Yeah. Back in high school. By my friend. At a party she only went to because she hoped I’d be there.”

“I’m sorry.” I sigh.

“I came over here to talk to you because you looked like— well, like a guy about to puke.”

My face gets hot. I swallow another gulp of water and look away. But I can’t deny I’m curious. “How do you…” Deal with it? Avoid killing the guy who did it? I wave my hand, trying to fill in that blank but coming up empty.

He angles his head, studying me. “Get over my guilt?”

Okay. That works, too.

He takes another look at the girl in the black boots and shrugs.

“Still working on it. Being here is part of it. She’s doing the keynote speech at the rally. Took me a while, but I finally figured out that therapy’s not so bad, either.”

My parents wanted us all to go to therapy, but I said no way. Maybe that was a mistake. “Can I ask you something?”

The guy nods.

I swallow more water. “You ever say something you can’t take back? Something that made her hate you.”

He grins and rolls his eyes. “God, yes. I can’t watch a Star Wars movie without wanting to kick my own ass.”

“Huh?”

He waves a hand. “Long story. I was a real dick to her, embarrassing her in front of my friends so they wouldn’t turn on me. She forgave me. Somewhere along the line, I figured out how to forgive myself so I could be the man she deserves.”

Forgive myself. That’s exactly what Brittany said. I consider that for a couple of minutes and then shake my head. “I gotta go.” I stand up. “Thanks for the water and for—” I wave a hand. “You know.”

“Yeah. No problem. Hope we see you at the rally. Trust me, she’s something.” He jerks a thumb toward the girl in the black boots, and I don’t doubt him for a second.

“Yeah. Maybe.”

He extends a hand. “Ian.”

I shake it. “Derek,” I say. “Thanks again.”

“Here.” He fishes through his pockets and comes out with a business card. “My cell number. I can help. If you want.”

I take off, tucking the card into my pocket along with the blue-and-white flyer. I don’t even know why I’m keeping them. It’s not like there’s any way Ashley’s gonna forgive me. I’m not even sure I can forgive myself. I’ll never be the hero again in her eyes.

Rafflecopter for Someone I Used To Know Blog Tour Giveaway:

Patty is offering one (1) lucky Grand Prize winner a $25 Amazon Gift Card and a paperback copy of Someone I Used to Know, plus three (3) Runner-Up winners a $5 Amazon Gift Card. To enter for your chance to win one of these exciting prizes, please click on the Rafflecopter photo to enter. Good Luck!!

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PattyB-01     About Patty Blount:

Patty Blount grew up quiet and somewhat invisible in Queens, NY, but found her voice writing smart and strong characters willing to fight for what’s right. Today, she’s the award-winning author of edgy, realistic, gut-wrenching contemporary and young adult romance. Still a bit introverted, she gets lost often, eats way too much chocolate, and tends to develop mad, passionate crushes on fictional characters…and actors like Gilles Marini….and Sam Heughan. Okay, so Patty’s not nearly as cool as her characters, but she is a solid supporter of women’s rights and loves delivering school presentations.

Patty is best known for her internet issues novels, including SOME BOYS, a 2015 CLMP Firecracker winner and RWA Rita Finalist, and SEND, a 2012 Junior Library Guild Fall Pick. Her upcoming release, SOMEONE I USED TO KNOW, has already been selected as a 2018 Junior Library Guild Fall Pick. Visit her website at pattyblount.com, where you can sign up for her newsletter. She blogs at YA Outside the Lines and is also active on Twitter and Facebook. When she’s not writing, Patty loves to watch bad sci-fi movies, live tweeting the hilarity, and scour Pinterest for ideas on awesome bookcases. Patty lives on Long Island with her family in a house that, sadly, lacks bookcases. She loves hearing from readers, especially when they tell her she’s cool (even though she knows it’s not true), and is easily bribed with chocolate. Never underestimate the power of chocolate.

Read | Roar | Revel

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Deep Cover- Scarlett Cole Blog Tour Excerpt & Giveaway!!!

Back with the next installment in her Love Over Duty series, comes DEEP COVER by Scarlett Cole. For Ex-Navy SEAL Cabe Moss and FBI operative Amy Murray when the sparks begin to fly—and the stakes rise to dangerous heights—are they in too deep? Fans of alpha heroes and workplace romance won’t want to miss this hot romantic suspense.

 Deep Cover Corrected

Title: Deep Cover

Author: Scarlett Cole

Release Date: July 31, 2018

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Series: Love Over Duty #3

Genres: Romantic Suspense

Page Count: 336

Format: Print and digital

 Synopsis:

ARE THEY IN TOO DEEP?

Ex-Navy SEAL Cabe Moss always comes when called to duty—at all costs. Even though the death of his fiancée nearly destroyed him, Cabe won’t let his past interfere with any work that has to get done. When his latest task pushes him to team up with FBI operative Amy Murray, a fierce beauty with the undercover skills to match, Cabe must admit that, for the first time in years, he wants to do more than just complete their mission together…

Amy was born ready for this assignment, but working side-by-side with the the strong, silent, and frustratingly professional Cabe seems to be the biggest challenge of all. But when the sparks begin to fly—and the stakes rise to dangerous heights—the only thing Amy is left worrying about is how she can resist him. Their lives may be in danger, but their hearts hold the biggest risk of all…

 

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Chapters Indigo → https://bit.ly/2xXFytZ

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DEEP COVER Excerpt

Copyright © 2018 Scarlett Cole

 

“Where are you hiding my baby girl?” a large voice boomed from the Caesars Palace hallway.

Valentina nodded her head in the direction of the doorway. “You should go find him before he disrupts any of the private tables,” she said with a smile.

Amy looked at their joined hands for just a millisecond longer before pulling them away. “You should go and start practicing,” she said. “If I’m going to work my way into the Lucky Seven Casino’s inner circle, I’d feel better if you were there too.” Amy wandered to the door and found her Stetson-clad father looking into one of the rooms. “I’m right here, Dad,” she said as she hurried to him and hugged him in the hallway. He smelled of leather and cigar smoke. Maybe it was because she’d lost her mother so many years ago, but it was impossible to explain the feeling of safety that washed over her when she was fortunate enough to spend time around her father.

“Let me look at you,” he said, taking a step away from her. He studied her face. “Humph. San Diego appears to agree with you. I was kinda hoping it wouldn’t.”

“It does. And while you know I can’t talk about what I’m working on, the job does too.” Over her father’s shoulder, she saw Cabe walking toward them with Uncle Clive. She smiled when she noticed that Cabe was wearing a black jacket that fit him to perfection. He’d remembered. “Dad, let me introduce you to Cabe Moss.”

Her father turned and offered Cabe his hand. “Well aren’t you one big son of a bitch? If you’re the guy who has my little girl’s back, I feel better already.”

Cabe’s face broke into a grin. “My pleasure, sir.”

“Sir. I like manners in a man. Military?”

“A SEAL, sir.” Cabe said.

“Well, let’s see if we can’t teach you a thing or two. Which room are we in, Clive?”

As Uncle Clive led her father farther down the hallway, she turned and noticed Cabe’s eyes were on her legs. Her bare legs. “Eyes up here, soldier,” she said, humor in her tone. It made her feel warm inside that he was looking.

“It’s the sailor,” he said with a wink. “They’re good-looking legs, and I’m only human.”

It was wrong to let him flirt, it was wrong for her to respond, but for a moment, she wanted to pretend the rules didn’t apply. She reached forward and brushed a piece of lint off the shoulder of his jacket, then smoothed down his lapels. It was an intimate thing to do, she knew. And a risk, given the requirement to stay focused on the job. But hell, a piece of her had always believed in the what-happens-in-Vegas slogan. Here, in the middle of Caesars Palace, the real world didn’t truly exist. “You look good in a suit, sailor.”

Cabe placed his hands on top of hers and squeezed them gently. “You’re killing me, Ames.”

The heat of his fingers burned her inside. Made her want things she had no business wanting from a man she had no business wanting them from. “Why Ames?”

He shrugged. “I don’t know. I just like it. It’s catchy. Makes you sound like one of those TV cop heroines from the seventies.”

“I’ll be there. But rest assured, even if I’m not invited, I’ll find a way to cover your back.” Cabe placed his hand around the back of her neck and pulled her forward gently to place a chaste kiss on her forehead. “I’ll be there, even if you can’t see me. I promise.”

 

Want to start from the beginning? Grab the first two books in the series today!

Read UNDER FIRE (Book #1) Now! Buy Now:  Amazon | Amazon UK | B&N | Chapters Indigo | iBooks

 

Read FINAL SIEGE (Book #2) Now! Buy Now: Amazon | Amazon UK | Chapters | B&N | iBooks

 

Enter to win A Signed Paperback Set of the Love Over Duty Series!

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       Scarlett Cole Photo                  About Scarlett Cole

The tattoo across my right hip says it all really. A Life Less Ordinary. Inked by the amazingly talented Luke Wessman at the Wooster Street Social Club (a.k.a. New York Ink). Why is it important? Well, it sums up my view on life. That we should all aspire to live a life that is less boring, less predictable. Be bold, and do something amazing. I’ve made some crazy choices. I’ve been a car maker, a consultant, and even a senior executive at a large retailer running strategy. Born in England, spent time in the U.S. and Japan, before ending up in Canada where I met my own, personal hero – all six and a half feet of him. Both of us are Scorpios! Yeah, I know! Should have checked the astrological signs earlier, but somehow it works for us. We have two amazing kids, who I either could never part with or could easily be convinced to sell on e-bay.

I’ve wanted to be a writer for a really long time. Check through my office cupboards or my computer and you’ll find half written stories and character descriptions everywhere. Now I’m getting the chance to follow that dream.

Connect with Scarlett: Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

The Duke I Tempted-Scarlett Peckham New Release & Giveaway!!

He’s controlled. Meticulous. Immaculate. No one would expect the proper Duke of Westmead to be a member of London’s most illicit secret club. Least of all: his future wife. A marriage to a duke has never been such fun in THE DUKE I TEMPTED by Scarlett Peckham

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About THE DUKE I TEMPTED

Having overcome financial ruin and redeemed his family name to become the most legendary investor in London, the Duke of Westmead needs to secure his holdings by producing an heir. Which means he must find a wife who won’t discover his secret craving to spend his nights on his knees—or make demands on his long scarred-over heart.

Poppy Cavendish is not that type of woman. An ambitious self-taught botanist designing the garden ballroom in which Westmead plans to woo a bride, Poppy has struggled against convention all her life to secure her hard-won independence. She wants the capital to expand her exotic nursery business—not a husband.

But there is something so compelling about Westmead, with his starchy bearing and impossibly kind eyes—that when an accidental scandal makes marriage to the duke the only means to save her nursery, Poppy worries she wants more than the title he is offering. The arrangement is meant to be just business. A greenhouse for an heir. But Poppy yearns to unravel her husband’s secrets—and to tempt the duke to risk his heart.

Available Now!

Order this title at these online retailers:

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Check out the book trailer for THE DUKE I TEMPTED!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__XlVV0KVUA&feature=youtu.be

Thank you for celebrating this exciting new release with us.

Enter to win 

Grand Prize: $50 Amazon Gift Card

 

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Exclusive Excerpt!!!

Poppy sat at a round table in the corner, surrounded by piles of drawings. She still wore her gardening clothes, and her eyes were heavy-lidded. She looked intense and flushed and disheveled.

Beautiful.

No. He must stop doing that. Must chasten his reactions to her.

Hardworking. She looked tired from her labors.

He cleared his throat. “Poppy. You’re still awake.”

She looked up at him with a guilty expression. “Your Grace. Yes. And it seems I have invaded your study — I’m so sorry. The others were playing whist in the library and I thought to finish my work in the quiet. I’m just finishing — I’ll leave you.”

“Never mind. Stay. Please. Show me what it is you’re sketching.”

She hesitated. He felt her eyes linger on his face, like she was trying to discern something about him. No doubt, her downcast expression had something to do with his invasion of her bedchamber the previous evening. He needed to address that. No woman who’d been raised in Grove Vale would be ignorant of the stories about his father. He could not have her think that he expected similar liberties of her. He had taken far too many as it was.

“Poppy, last night — I hope I didn’t alarm you. I apologize for intruding. I would not normally disturb a lady’s privacy, and I hope I gave no offense. I was concerned. You seemed quite distressed.”

Her face flickered. “It was only a nightmare,” she said finally. “I shan’t disturb you again.”

“I was not disturbed,” he said quickly.

She smiled. “When I awoke this morning I wondered if I had dreamt you.”

“No,” he said, drinking in her languid eyes.

She reached up and touched his face above his cheekbone. “No,” she agreed. “Here you are. Real indeed.”

Damn him, but he caught her hand and dragged it down to his lips and placed a kiss inside her palm.

Her mouth parted. Perhaps in shock. Perhaps in something closer to the feeling surging behind his sternum, overriding his judgment, his propriety, his will to be the kind of person he had spent a decade refashioning himself into.

“Forgive me. I am not myself tonight,” he forced himself to say, releasing her. He looked into her green eyes and told her the truth of it: “You should leave me.”

He meant it.

And yet.

And yet.

He hoped she wouldn’t listen.

 

 

             ScarlettPeckham  Author Bio:

Scarlett Peckham fell in love with romance novels as a child, sneaking paperbacks from the stash in her grandmother’s closet. By the time she came of age, she had exhausted her library’s supply and begun to dream of writing one of her own.

 

Scarlett studied English at Columbia University and built a career in communications, but in her free hours always returned to her earliest obsession: those delicious, big-hearted books you devour in the dark and can never bear to put down. Her steamy historical romances about alpha heroines have been finalists for the Golden Heart® Award four times. Her debut book, THE DUKE I TEMPTED, will be out July 31, 2018.

 

Scarlett splits her time between London and Los Angeles. When not reading or writing romance she enjoys pretending to know about wine, discussing The Real Housewives, and cooking enormous pots of soup.

 

Scarlett is represented by Sarah Younger at the Nancy Yost Literary Agency and spends far too much time on Instagram and Twitter.

 

Connect with Scarlett:  Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram | Newsletter | Amazon

Happy Reading!!