It's that time of year again!! When we all go crazy for a few days, trying to win piles of awesome books! This year, I'm also doing my own personal giveaway, so make sure to read all the way to the VERY BOTTOM of the post for your chance to win a signed copy of either DARK BREAKS THE DAWN or the sequel BRIGHT BURNS THE NIGHT -- your choice!!!
"With its intricate, dazzling system of magic and a vibrant cast of characters, this passionate, war-torn retelling of Swan Lake is not one to be missed! You'll be spellbound from the very first lines." - Sarah J. Maas #1 NYT bestselling author of THRONE OF GLASS series
"Larson (DEFY trilogy) deftly weaves fantasy with the best parts of the Swan Lake ballet in this gripping first book of a duology." - PW *Starred* review
(You can win one of these!! Make sure to go all the way to the bottom!)
Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors...and a chance to win some awesome prizes! At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize--one lucky winner will receive one signed book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 72 hours!
Directions: Below, you'll notice that I've listed my favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the Red Team, and then add them up (don't worry, you can use a calculator!).
Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian's permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Sunday October 7th, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.
Here's a little trivia for you - my all time FAVORITE number has always been 21!!!
This year I'm hosting the J.M. Sullivan!
-->Teacher by day, award-winning author by night, J.M. Sullivan is a fairy tale fanatic who loves taking classic stories and turning them on their head. Although known to dabble in adulting, J.M. is a big kid at heart who still believes in true love, magic, and most of all, the power of coffee. If you would like to connect, find JM on social media at @jmsullivanbooks -- she’d love to hear from you!
She is the author of ALICE:
Isn't that cover gorgeous???
-->Alice Carroll hardly remembers life before the plague. When the undead first crawled from their graves, it was like a nightmare. When they killed her mother, the nightmare became shockingly real. Now her sister Dinah has contracted the 'un-deadly' virus and without a cure, soon she'll be worse than dead. She'll be momerath.
To save her sister, Alice must leave the safety of the Sector and venture into Momerath territory in search of an antidote - if it exists. Chasing a rumor about a mysterious doctor with a cure, Alice falls down the rabbit hole into Wanderland, where ravenous momerath aren't the only danger lurking.
You can buy her book ALICE by CLICKING HERE!!
You're in for a treat today, because J.M. is giving you a sneak peek of the first chapter from BROKEN GLASS! Read on for that sneak peek -- and make sure you continue past it for my giveaway of a signed book!
LOOKING GLASS HOUSE
My sister is gone, and it’s all my fault.
Alice buried her face in her pillow, trying to chase away the thoughts that refused to
yield. The darkness didn’t help—she was still haunted by the vision of Dinah’s beautiful
almond eyes flashing from a rich, radiant brown to a mottled, murky grey.
A frustrated scream ripped from her chest and she flung the pillow across the room,
lashing out against the fresh wave of memories threatening to drown her. The projectile hit
her desk with a crash, toppling Alice’s family picture with Dinah and her mother. She winced
as the frame fell, smacking against the hard wood. Alice rushed to her desk, overcome with
a fresh surge of emotion as she looked at the picture and saw the fractured image of her
family—infinitely separated by shards of broken glass.
Alice gently removed the largest shard, clearing the splintered marks from Dinah’s
face, revealing the unmarred image of her sister. A harsh laugh ripped from Alice’s chest.
If only it was that easy.
In reality, things were much more complicated. In reality, her mother was dead, and
her sister was something worse. She was a momerath.
Alice shivered, remembering the way the virus had come for Dinah, changing her
from a healthy, vibrant woman into a shambling monster in a matter of days. Alice glanced
down at the image of her sister, and was hit with a sharp pang of guilt as she studied her
smiling face. She hadn’t even been there for the worst of it. She had left the Sector and went
to Phoenix, leaving Dinah all alone.
Alice bit her lip to still her trembling chin, then set the photo back in its place. She
stooped to retrieve her pillow, then scuffled across the floor to flop mournfully onto her
bed, overcome with shame.
She had gone to Wanderland to save Dinah, but all she’d succeeded in was making
things worse. The rumor of a cure had only brought more questions about the undeadly
virus, along with the undesired side effect of the death of too many good people. The guiltreel
whirred through Alice’s mind again, fresh with images of the people who had helped her
through Wanderland. Dr. Abbott, Indi, Johnny, Big Mike. So many lost in a failed attempt to
find a cure, and it was all her fault.
No. Alice strangled the pillow in her hands. It was the Red Queen. If she hadn’t
interfered, Chess and I would have made it back in time to properly administer the antidote.
If it wasn’t for her, Dinah wouldn’t have —
Alice’s nose pricked as she swallowed the lump in her throat. It was hard to believe
that only a week ago, she had been sitting in this same room, mentally preparing for a
simple scouting trip.
If that was all I had to worry about now, Alice thought with a bitter sigh. She couldn’t
believe how much she had whined at Dinah. Unbidden, a fresh wave of tears surged
forward, carried on the memory of the last conversation she had with her sister.
‘I only talk to myself because I don't have anyone else to talk to. It’s a coping
‘You can talk to me. I'm always here for you, little sister.’
The tears Alice fought so hard to hold back spilled over her cheeks and onto her
pillow. She couldn’t believe how selfish she had been. How much she had taken for granted.
How little she had done. Maybe if she were braver or smarter or faster, Dinah would still be
But she wasn’t. She was the same quiet, timid girl she’d been her whole life. And
Dinah was gone.
“Knock, knock.” Chess appeared as he rapped the inside of the already opened door.
He peeked at Alice from under the messy ash hair falling in front of his amber eyes. He
brushed it away and a nervous grin twitched his lips, showing a bright smile that stood out
against his dark olive skin. “I come bringing gifts,” he said, setting a peanut butter sandwich
and a warm soda on the table beside her bed. Alice gave it a blank stare.
“Thanks.” She tried to smile, but it collapsed halfway through the gesture.
“You have to eat,” Chess chided as he flopped onto the bed beside her. “I know you
miss your sister, but it’s been three days and you haven’t left the room once.” He screwed
his lips together as he leaned in to sniff her shoulder. “You’re starting to stink.”
“I am not!” Alice pushed him back as she shot away from him and her long, silverblonde
hair tumbled over her shoulder, revealing a collection of tangled strands. Her eyes
widened and she grasped it into a low ponytail and brushed her fingers through the ends to
quickly smooth the snarls. Chess snickered.
“Alright, the smelly thing wasn’t true.” He coughed out another laugh before he
looked at her disheveled state, then his expression softened. “But honestly, Princess? This
“I’m not hungry.” Her stomach let out a contending growl and Chess’ lips quirked in a
knowing smile. Alice huffed and flopped onto the bed, turning her back to him. Behind her,
his chest rumbled with a low laugh.
“Sure, you aren’t,” he sighed, but didn’t press the issue. “At least drink the soda.” He
waved it enticingly over her shoulder. “It’s practically a delicacy.”
Alice stared at the can. How could she care about food at a time like this? Her sister
was outside the Sector running God-knows-where, disguised as a monster. Except, it wasn’t
a disguise. It was her.
A frustrated growl escaped her throat. Her mind stuck in a cruel loop, forcing her to
endlessly relive Dinah’s transformation from Carrier to momerath to . . . Alice wasn’t quite
sure what. A million questions buzzed behind the gruesome memories accompanying the
reel with a disparaging soundtrack. She twisted her neck to face Chess.
“You don’t understand,” she argued. “You didn’t see what happened to her. The way
she looked at me. I—” Her voice broke her explanation, and she turned away to hide her
impending tears. “I lost her.”
“And you’ll find her,” Chess encouraged. “I mean, you found a plague antidote in the
middle of a momerath haystack.” He nudged the small of her back. “You can find your
“We found half an antidote,” she reminded him. “It didn’t work—not all the way.”
Chess sighed. Alice could picture him scratching the back of his head as he decided what to
say next. She knew she was being difficult, but she wasn’t finished with her self-loathing.
“Listen, Princess,” Chess’ voice hardened, employing a different approach, “you can
mope over what happened and how you’re a failure for as long as you want, but that isn’t
the girl I know. And it won't help. If anything, it will only make finding Dinah harder later.” He
caught his breath before continuing, “Because you'll get over this and then you’ll be upset
that you sat around and waited so long to kick ass.” He nudged her in the back again.
“That’s my Alice.”
Alice chewed her lip, considering his words. Chess was right. Her sulking wasn’t
accomplishing anything. It wasn’t even making her feel better. Resigned, she slowly scooted
to join him at the edge of the bed. Her shoulders slumped as she studied her knuckles to
avoid Chess’ gaze, embarrassed by her tantrum.
“What are we going to do?” she moaned. “She could be anywhere.”
Chess’ features scrunched together as he deliberated. “Where do you think she
Alice shrugged. Whenever Dinah had taken her scouting before, they always took
different paths. They never went the same way twice. It was too dangerous. Instead, they
followed an alternating pattern, tracing an invisible circle around the Sector. The last time
they went out, they went north, towards Glendale. If Dinah followed the same route, this
time she’d travel more east.
She’d be heading towards Phoenix.
“I think I know where she’s going,” she gasped. “But,” she paused and turned to
Chess, whose amber eyes narrowed as her face curled into a grimace. “I don’t think you'll
Chess’ brows knotted deeper together. “Why?” he asked. “Where’s she going?”
Alice sucked in a breath, bracing for his reaction. She knew it was the last place either
of them wanted to go. Yet, something inside her screamed that she was right. Her breath
whooshed from her lips as she met his bronze gaze.
“She’s going back to Wanderland.”
“What?” Chess jumped from the bed, his eyes blazing as he gaped at her in shock.
Though her own insides were swirling, she calmly met his gaze, confident in her suggestion.
Finally, he dropped beside her with a heavy sigh.
“It’s never easy with you, is it?”
A small laugh escaped Alice’s throat. “I never said it would be.”
Chess scrubbed his eyes and flopped dramatically onto the bed. He peeked out at
her through one hand, then quirked the corner of his lips. “It’s a good thing you’re pretty.”
Alice’s breath stalled as she choked over Chess’ quip and its possible interpretation.
Her face warmed and she dropped her gaze, busying herself with freeing the stray fluffs
from her blanket to cover the flush burning her cheeks.
“Yeah, well,” she countered in a strangled reply, “you’re the one who followed me, so
this is on you.”
Chess laughed. “That’s because a gentleman always keeps his promises.” He sprang
from the bed and extended his hand with a wink. “Are we ready to go find ourselves a
Alice accepted his hand with a quick nod. “Let’s go get Lewis,” she said. “I promised
him an ‘exclusive’ when I got home. Guess it’s time to pay the Piper.”
“He’s getting one hell of a payback,” Chess muttered.
“And then some,” Alice agreed. She moved toward the door, but was stopped when
Lewis turned the corner and barged inside, his chest heaving. He stuttered to a stop in front
of Alice and clutched his side, his brown eyes bulging under his mop of mousy brown hair.
He gasped in a ragged breath as he stared at Alice before finally rasping out his words.
“We have to go.”
***Did you enjoy this chapter? Want to learn more?
Discover Alice’s secrets at:
To continue the hunt, make sure to go visit Mary Amato by CLICKING HERE!
But first - make sure you enter my giveaway right here ---->
Enter to win either of these books (you choose!) signed and mailed directly to you, with swag! It's your choice - either the first book, or the sequel and conclusion to the duology. (Open internationally.) Good luck!!
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