Surprise Announcement From Danielle Sibarium

We are so excited in sharing Danielle’s Sibarium’s announcement. This news we were hoping to hear. Make sure to enter Danielle’s special giveaway at the end of her announcement. We won’t delay it any longer. Danielle take it away:

First, I would like to thank you for allowing me to announce my special message on your blog. I am so honored to be here today. I understand your blog is a reflection of you and so I thank you for giving me this opportunity. Next, I’d like to thank every reader that has ever picked up one of my books and given them a chance. And finally I’d like to thank all of my fans that have felt compelled to reach out to me. I have appreciated all of your letters, messages, and support, whether it came in an email, or just a short and sweet tweet.

When I began this journey, I had no expectations. I had dreams and hopes and wishes, but to say I expected For Always to take on a life of its own would not be true. Since its release in October of 2011, many people have contacted me asking me if I planned to write a sequel. I thought Stephanie and Jordan’s story had been completed, but for many of you, it wasn’t enough. So because you asked, because you told me in no uncertain terms you wanted it, I am working on And Forever, the sequel to For Always. And Forever picks up where For Always ended. While Stephanie and Jordan are finally a couple, they still carry the same baggage they had before. Can their love survive the ghosts of their past and the challenges of the future?

I hope you are excited about this as I am. I expect And Forever to be released in July 2014. Until then, look for teasers on Facebook and Twitter. And before I go, I leave you with this, the prologue of And Forever.  Once again thank you for being so amazing. Happy Reading!

 

Prologue

            The scent of death lingered nearby. Always. Only I didn’t attract it, I repelled it, like a deflector shield. This was my lot in life, to extend the days of those I loved. That theory came from Jordan; the keeper of my heart, and the love of my life!

I sighed. I didn’t realize I did it until Jordan apologized. Again.

“I’m sorry Steph, I don’t want to be distracted.”

“I know. I understand. Promise.”

He misunderstood. It was a contented sigh. One that said I was thrilled my boyfriend was driving me to school. The sigh was a sign of how surreal sitting next to Jordan and knowing that he loved me was. How I couldn’t believe in a matter of hours he’d be leaving me alone on the college campus, and I intended to savor each minute with him. The sigh was the only chance I had of getting any of those sentiments across because he didn’t want me to talk while he was driving. I knew just being in the car together was challenging for him.

Jordan still suffered the after effects of a terrible car accident that left his ex-girlfriend dead. Of course he was breaking up with her at the time because he loved me, and I pushed him into making a choice between us. When he served as my unexpected prom date, I made him admit his feelings. That’s what led to his break-up with Madison, leaving him in a swamp of guilt induced quick sand when she died. But we worked through all that.

I hoped.

I didn’t bother saying anything further to try and reassure him I wasn’t upset. I’d already been warned he couldn’t concentrate on the road and to keep the radio down. The problem was he wanted it down so low I couldn’t hear the music. I glanced at his hands on the steering wheel, his knuckles were white. He held on so tight I expected his fingers to cramp up. I hated that this was so hard for him. I wished I knew how to make it better, but the only thing I could do was stand beside him and hope in time he’d heal.

I turned to my window, watching the never ending expanse of trees zoom by. I wished for a brief moment I’d gone in the other car with my mother and her new, at least new to me, boyfriend Eddie. I’d been clueless about Eddie, but after her health scare last week, she came clean. She wanted to see him and had been ordered to take a few days off of work. Work is where they’d rendezvous during lunch. She’d been frightened when they first told her it looked like a heart attack and realized it was silly to keep him hidden away. No way I wanted to hear what cheesy, weird things they might be talking about. I mean it was my mom, gross. Still, I was happy for her. My father died a decade ago and as far as I knew she’d never dated before.

I chose to ride with Jordan, because even in the deafening silence, and the tension he carried on his shoulders every time we got in a car together, there was nowhere else I’d rather be. From the first moment he spoke to me, he owned my heart. It was branded with his name. I’d tried for four years to move on, to forget him, but that wasn’t an option for me. No one could hold a candle to him.

“Hey,” He pulled my attention back to the here and now. “You know I love you right?”

I smiled. Of course he knew that would make me smile, that’s why he said it. It felt like that’s all I’d done over the last week since he found me crying on the beach. I’ll never forget the wave of relief that washed over me when I found out he’d been spared from a terrible plane crash. He never made it on the plane because I called him at the last minute in an attempt to get him to stay. Thank goodness I did. I didn’t know where he was going or why, but Maria warned me that he was leaving, and it might be forever.

I always believed myself to be the root cause of the bad things that happen to people around me, Jordan thought I was what kept them hanging on. I didn’t believe him, at least not yet. But having him try to convince me otherwise promised to be amazing.

Make sure to enter to win a copy of For Always  20120611-121556.jpg:

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Make sure to like Danielle’s Facebook pages to get And Forever teases:

Here are my Facebook links

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2friendspromatewithauthors/391652567636913/?ref=notif&notif_t=group_activity#!/foralwaysbook

https://www.facebook.com/groups/2friendspromatewithauthors/391652567636913/?ref=notif&notif_t=group_activity#!/DanielleSibarium

Find For Always on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12945317-for-always

You can purchase For always at the following sites:

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New Book Release: Waves of Love by Danielle Sibarium

Our weekend has been made better now that we know the final installment in The Heart Waves series is officially released. We will finally get to find out more about Reece and Tyler, but most of all we will get to find out who Jenna will pick. If you’re a fan of this incredibly  romantic series make sure to pick Waves of Love. If you haven’t been introduced to this series yet then make sure to pick up the first book Heart Waves.

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Jenna knew Reece would break her heart, when he did Tyler stepped in to pick up the pieces.

As she’s ready to take the next step with Tyler, Jenna finds herself face to face with Reece. Lies and secrets are discovered from the two boys she trusted the most. And now it’s more than just her heart on the line, it’s her life as well. 

Torn between two amazing guys Jenna’s certain of only one thing, this is the most important decision of her life. One almost destroyed her. The other brought her back to life. The time has come to choose. Can Jenna move forward with Tyler or will she be stuck in the past with Reece?

More Books by Danielle

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New Book Release: Because of You by Maria E. Monteiro

We have been counting down the months for this book to come out, and we are excited to report Because of You is officially out. We first fell in love with Maria’s books when we first read the Hold on Tight series. Maria E. Monteiro has a great talent for writing great YA books with authentic teenagers that make you fall in love. Now she has a new book out and we are sure it’s going to be another hit. Pick up your copy today. And make sure to enter to win a $50 or $25 Amazon gift Card.

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Synopsis:

Six years ago Austin broke Jade’s heart. On that day he went from being her best friend to the person she hates the most.

Now six years later Jade’s life has been turned upside down, the family she once knew no longer exists. Her father’s infidelity has made it hard for her to trust anyone.

That is until she reconnects with the one person she’s despised the most.

Will Austin be able to break through Jade’s wall of anger to get her to trust him?  Or will he break her heart again?

Together they will experience the ecstasies and agonies of being in love.

Excerpt:

I run out the door into the hot sticky August night air just as my tears begin to stream down my face. How can my father do this to us? Aren’t Carrie and me enough for him? How could he think this was something to celebrate? I will never forgive him for this.

I continue running, trying to breath in the thick air. I run down the parking lot until SMACK! My body bounces right off someone’s hard chest and fall backwards onto the inflexible wet ground.

“Whoa! Are you okay?” I hear a deep voice ask. He gives me his warm hand and helps me up.

“Yeah,” I answer, as the pain throbbing in my chest now travels down my body.

“Are you sure?” I look up at him and roll my eyes in revulsion. Why out of everyone in the world, do I have to bump into Austin Evans? He makes me sick.

His dark eyes narrow with concern and I remember I have tears in my eyes. He must think he’s the one who hurt me.

I yank my arm out of his grip. “Yeah. I’m fine.”

“Look, if you’re hurt…”

“I said I’m fine.” I continue to walk down the parking lot. I have no idea where I’m going. My dad drove so it’s not like I have a ride. Damn it!

“Hey,” Austin calls out running behind me.

“What?” I don’t stop walking.

“You don’t look like you’re okay. Do you need me to call someone for you? Or…”

“No. Just leave me alone,” I spit out, without looking back. I don’t need this right now. All I want to do is crawl under my covers and cry my eyes out.

“Where’re you going?”

I don’t say a word.

“Do you…”

“Austin!” A girl calls out. This time we both stop walking and look back at Leah Turner with her lips twisted up into a phony smile. Of course it’s her! Where ever Austin is Leah is sure to follow. “Where are you going?”

“Nowhere. I was just making sure that umm…” He looks at me once again acting like he doesn’t know my name. He’s so full of shit. I can’t stand him.

“Jade,” I remind him.

His look of concern disappears as the corners of his mouth point up producing an annoying smile. “I know who you are, Jade Miller.”

Does he want an award or something for remembering my whole name?

“Are you sure you’re okay?”

“She looks fine,” Leah calls out trying her best to sound sweet.

Leah and me do not have a good relationship. She blames me for our cheerleading team losing at finals last year. It’s not my fault I walked out half way through the routine. My dad had just sat down with Trisha, and instead of watching his daughter cheer he was too busy shoving his old tongue into her disgusting mouth. Just another thing my father is responsible for ruining.

“Look, she’s right. I’m fine,” I reassure him, wanting to get away from him and this moment.

“Where are you going?” he asks.

“Home.” I turn around and continue to walk away from him.

He follows right behind me again. “Do you need a ride?”

“Aren’t you on a date or something?”

“What? No. I’m meeting a couple of friends, but it’s okay. I can take you home.” I spin back around to see him smile again making his dimples appear. I hate those damn things. They drive all the girls at school wild, but they have the opposite affect on me.

A long time ago Austin was my best friend. He was the person who I shared all my secrets with. He was the person who knew I broke my sister’s iPod. He was the person who held me when my grandma died. He knew everything about me as I knew everything about him. But that was six years ago. Now all I know about him is his growing list of hook ups, while all he knows about me is my name.

Make Sure to Pick Up Your Copy Here:

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New Book Release: Feudlings in Flames by Wendy Knight

We are excited to let all of you know that the second book in the Fate on Fire series by Wendy Knight  is out in stores now. Pick up this incredible series if you haven’t yet.

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Synopsis:

Ari thought being in love with her prophesied nemesis sucked. But being responsible for her best friend’s kidnapping? It sucks worse.

 Ari and Shane thought they’d beaten Fate and ended the three-hundred year war plaguing their people. They thought love had won. But they were so, so wrong.

 Instead of graduating high school like the normals, they’re in a battle to save Charity – Shane’s cousin, Ari’s best friend, and the seer who might hold the key to ending the war for good. To do that, they’re forced to accept help from a boy they aren’t even sure they can trust. He’s powerful and knows spells even Ari’s never heard of, but he’s also secretive and has a past he’s determined to keep hidden . Add to that the fact that he has his sights set on Ari, and Shane would rather do without his help.

 Ari has bigger problems than mysterious boys and their strange powers. The powerful Edren Family is hunting her brother, and she can’t very well save him or Charity while they’re constantly being attacked by her own people. To stop the raids, she has to take the fight to them. But if she starts hunting the family that raised her, what kind of monster will she be?

 Fate still waits for the death of one by the hand of the other

 

Excerpt

“No no, Hunter, it curves this way.” Ari stood back, watching with a frown, and then jumped back in. “Imagine in your mind what you want the spell to do. Tie your emotions to your spells.”

Shane watched her guide Hunter and tried again on his own. “Close, Shane, but like this,” Ari reached out, holding his hand as she led him through the motion. He felt the flames racing through his blood react to her touch and sparks flew from his fingers, igniting the spell. It hung, burning, in the air, a bright blue curlicue thing. “Perfect,” she whispered, still holding on to his hand.

  “Maybe, but does it work?” Tristan’s voice was flat and uninterested, but Shane could hear the animosity running under the words.

“We don’t have any targets set out. He can’t test it.” Ari shook her head, and still holding Shane’s hand, made a quick swiping motion through the spell, dissipating it. “Try again.” She let go of his hand and stepped back, watching expectantly.

Shane tried, once, twice, and three times. He couldn’t get it quite right, but neither could Hunter, which made him feel better, and Tristan wasn’t even trying.

“It’s okay if you can’t do it, Shane. There are a lot of other powerful spells she uses that will be much easier for you to master,” Will said.

Ari vehemently shook her head. “No. He can do it. Just give him a minute!”

Shane kept his attention focused on the spell in front of him, but he couldn’t stop his grin.

Ari believed in him.

He burned the spell into the air again, trying to replicate the one Ari had drawn, but it fizzled into a mass of smoke. The spell had to ignite to actually do anything. He groaned in frustration, tipping his head sideways to look at Ari. “What am I doing wrong?”

She bit her lip, studying him for several seconds. “When you did it the first time, what were you thinking?”

 Shane paused, dropping his hand that was still poised in the air. “Umm… I was thinking we were gonna die and I had seen you throw that spell so I knew it was possible. It just happened.”

Make sure to pick up your copy here:

 

 

 

 

 

New Book Release: Safe by Dawn Husted

There’s nothing better than finding out a new book has come out. We are excited to let you know Safe by Dawn Husted is officially on sale today. Just read the sample below and we know you’ll be excited to get your hands on this book.

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A science fiction novel in a post-apocalyptic setting; Penny, a teenage girl, has been genetically mutated along with other inhabitants by a vaccine given to their great-grandparents who settled the Land, an island. This particular serum caused everyone to develop vine like marks all over their bodies, along with enhanced abilities passed down through the generations. Penny finds a shift in her reality that causes her to fight for survival as she searches for the truth, even if it puts her at odds with the only person she can trust.

Excerpt:

CHAPTER ONE

Today was our anniversary and my eighteenth birthday. When I woke up this morning, there was a folded-up letter flapping in the breeze against my window. Somehow, it managed to hang on from underneath the glass. A scribbled message jumpstarted my blood and I couldn’t help but smile.

Meet me when the sun sets. You know the place. – James

A couple days had passed since James and I saw each other. After we graduated last year, he went straight into the Academy and I obtained my job at the lab. Our schedules seem to keep us apart most of the time. Don’t get me wrong—I was more than pleased to find out he’d been promoted immediately upon training, surpassing all the tests with excellence. James outshined his whole class in every area. But I still missed him.

Everyone who lives in the Colony secures an occupation upon commencement from the school. This usually means at the Academy, a large building where guards are trained, or the high-rise laboratory complex, where I work. There are other jobs, of course; there have to be. If nobody cooked, or tended to the animals, we’d all starve.

Luckily, James was a shoe-in with regard to the Academy; his parents and grandparents all had thick vines. Vines. That’s what we called them. Most every person born here has a specific genetic trait passed down from our ancestors, who were injected with a vaccine upon settling here. This particular vaccination catapulted a line of generations with special abilities and saved us from extinction. The vines, black lines on our skin, are linked to a number of enhanced physical strengths along with a variety of other skills that intensify as they become larger—if you’re lucky. As a person reaches maturity, the more prevalent those skills become.

Regrettably, as I grew up, my vines never seemed quite as predominant as everyone else’s did. However, last year when I turned seventeen, they finally became thicker. Almost

overnight. My vines thickened, but my strength and power never fully advanced. I looked like every other girl, two arms and two legs, but undeniably clumsier and bonier; my body oddly proportioned. Before graduating, I never turned any boys’ heads. And still, when I looked in the mirror, all I saw were legs far too long and skinny, and a nose that needed some work. Not to mention, I was as pale as a cucumber and my feet tripped me everywhere I walked.

James came in to my life out of nowhere. Our Colony lives on an island that endured the devastation that ran rampant across the Earth. We call the island our Land and only a few thousand people have survived since first securing the terrain with a perimeter, which keeps us safe from any unwanted survivors. Our ancestors fought hard to stay alive prior to coming here. In a colony so small, everybody knows everyone else’s business. And yet, I never communicated with James before that day. That specific day during our last year of school, he was assigned as my partner for a project. When the teacher called our names aloud, I was mortified by James’ loud, ogre-like response and immediately requested a new partner… Unfortunately, to no avail. My feelings for him now are like north and south compared to what they were like on that first day.

Today after work, I hiked straight to our spot, the field where we first met doing research on that assignment. After weeks working on the project together, and me tolerating his rude behavior, we started getting along. Opposites really do attract; he had too much energy for one person and I slowed him down, helped him appreciate the little things. He forced excitement into my life; the feeling of being bored wasn’t something I ever really considered beforehand. When the research was completed and we turned the assignment in, it suddenly felt wrong not to talk anymore. The next day, I spotted him following me after class. When I turned around, he asked me on our first official date.

I looked around the field, but James wasn’t here yet. The vibrant rays from the sunset melted into the sky and I breathed a sweet scent from nearby; a string of pink and red blossoms covered a mass of bushes, flowers James planted for me last year. The aroma was a careful mix between honey and lavender.

I never had anyone treat me the way he does.

We know between my brains and his future rank in the Academy, we’ll never want for anything and have everything we can imagine on this small island. I have the brains and connections with my father working as top scientist in the lab and James’ strength is more

powerful than most people at the Academy his age are. Without a doubt, we’ll both obtain clearance levels above our friends within a couple of years. And every three years, a handful of guards are picked to join an elite team, James hoping to be one of them. The elite team is scheduled for their first reconnaissance mission, which takes place following the next onset of additions—eight months from now. The goal is to thrive and find another Land; an inhabitable place that we can occupy and populate with more of us.

Everyone who lives here came from a military background, bled into our blood by procreation. When our ancestors arrived, they wouldn’t have lived if not for the help of the military. From there, naturally, our Colony was born.

James and I talked all the time about making it official one day—getting married. But not anytime soon. Right now, we both needed to focus on our clearance level. It wasn’t easy though. The only person I thought of all day, every day, was James. Every day. It made it hard for me to focus at work; my mind wandered during equations I was supposed to solve and chemicals I was mixing. This led to making a few mistakes over the past year in the lab. One disaster in particular I was lucky that nobody perished in and fortunately, I wasn’t fired.

The scent of lavender was all around as I watched the sun lower behind an energetic sheer cloth of pink. Then I heard James’ footsteps sneaking up behind me. I stretched back on my elbows, basking my face in what was left from the sun’s heat as he ran up and stole a kiss from the side of my neck. I closed my eyes and he kissed a path around to my lips. The warmness lasted minutes on my skin, and then he reluctantly pulled away.

Before I could say anything, a picnic basket behind his back caught my eye.

“Brought your favorite,” he smiled and sat the basket in between us, lifting the lid. I saw what was inside and didn’t know how he pulled this one off. Lemons. They were hard to come by due to lack of availability, but the smell of the lemon-iced cake was undeniable and instantly made my mouth water. For some reason, lemons didn’t grow well with the soil here. There were very few lemon trees and normally the fruit was saved for President Falcon. I wondered how James acquired them, but decided not to worry about such a minute thing. The last thing I wanted was to dampen the mood with a stupid inquiry, especially when he was so excited about the surprise. A grin sat stagnant on his face, spread ear to ear, and I happily grabbed a slice.

For the rest of the evening, we were a mess of laughter, enjoying each other’s latest stories. We could literally talk all night and never get tired of hearing each other speak.

Eventually, it started getting late and we gathered the empty plates and picnic blanket before James walked me home. My parents and I didn’t live too far away, about a thirty-minute stroll from the field. Neither one of us had a car yet, a person, normally a guard, had to be assigned one since not many were available. He’s hoping once the next promotion comes around, if he makes the elite team, he’ll be assigned his first vehicle. I desperately hoped the same. I had never been inside a car before and it would be nice not to walk everywhere.

Once we reached my porch, James and I lingered in each other’s kisses for a few extra minutes before he left. When I opened the front door, a strand of light escaped from underneath the kitchen door. The yellow glow shined against the dark wooden floors, and my eyebrows furrowed with curiosity. Normally my parents would be asleep at this hour and the only thing greeting me would be a single lamp on the entry table. They’re used to me coming home late after being out with James and no longer stayed up waiting for me. Yet it hadn’t always been this way; when James asked me out on our first date, my father wouldn’t hear of it, he told me ‘no’ before I could complete a defense for my side. They didn’t know him nor did they trust him. It took weeks before my mom was able to talk my dad into letting me sit on the front porch with James, windows open in case I needed their help for some strange reason. They didn’t act this way when we had been working on our school assignment alone. Having the windows open while on the porch was more than embarrassing. I was positive James would never ask me out again. Fortunately, he was as hardheaded as my dad was and after a month of numerous, repetitive dates on our front porch with the windows open, my parents finally agreed we could go elsewhere—the field. After more months of dating and my dad realizing James wasn’t going anywhere, he eventually came around to the idea of us. Plus, my dad’s attitude changed once he made it clear to James that if I came home with so much as a teardrop, he would make the necessary arrangements to destroy any career of his at the Academy. I know my dad would never really do anything like that, not now, but I think it frightened James, because for a while he wouldn’t look him in the eyes.

Unexpectedly, now my dad has sort of become a father figure to James—a role that’s been missing in his life since he was much younger. He doesn’t talk about that day; the accident his father was in at the Academy. The only thing he’s ever mentioned is he was killed in a training exercise and he said he missed him, but that was it. That was the last time he ever talked

about him to me. James isn’t the touchy, feely, show-all-your-emotions type of guy. He likes to appear as tough as he looks.

As I stood in the entry, the house smelled of warm chocolate pie fresh from the oven. My mom loved to bake and had many failed attempts at teaching me how. I’m not bad but definitely not as good as she is. She doesn’t keep recipes; it’s all in her head she says, thus only making it that much harder for me. I stepped onto the first stair heading towards my room when I heard my mom’s voice getting louder in the kitchen. She had always been a quiet person, careful with the words she chose and how she spoke to people, and she’s told me more than once I needed to think before I speak. Something I think she does too often. For her to raise her voice in any situation is cause for curiosity. I carefully stepped back down and crept across the wooden floors, maneuvering between the blue couch and the oversized bookshelf as I inched closer. I listened with my ear on the kitchen door. Completely still. My hearing wasn’t as good as James’ was. He could hear my heart beating in a room next to him.

I shoved my ear as close as possible against the door, trying not to make any noise. Only a few audible words cleared my hearing between the jumbled whispers, then my mom’s voice got louder again. Something about Madeline. My sister.

I haven’t heard her mention Madeline’s name… ever. I only knew of her from the pictures I found one day in the attic. I had stared at the small photo grasped between my fingers and asked my dad who the baby was. He told me they had another daughter, she would’ve been my older sister, but she had died from the plague. I knew exactly what plague he was talking about. There had been only one. The plague killed hundreds of people during the years when our grandparents settled here. And it wasn’t completely gone, just controlled. I haven’t heard of a single incident for decades, but every now and then someone gets ill and dies, especially this past year. Every death made me wonder if it was the plague.

After my dad told me the story about how Madeline died, I never brought the subject up to my mom. He said Madeline’s death almost destroyed her completely. They were scared to have children after that, but after a few years, they decided to try again and that’s when she became pregnant with me. I think that’s why he was so protective of me. He already lost one daughter and was terrified of what it would do to my mother if they lost me too.

Whatever my mom and dad were talking about in the kitchen suddenly came to a halt. I quickly tiptoed back across the living room and stepped onto the first stair when I heard, “Hi

Penelope, did you just get home?” My mom and dad were the only ones who called me by my full name anymore. “I baked a pie, dear. Would you like a piece?” my mom asked.

I looked at the clock pendulum swinging back and forth on the wall next to me. “It’s kind of late, don’t you think?” Nearly eleven o’clock.

“Oh, I didn’t realize it was so late,” her voice slowed to a whisper and her shoulders sank. “Still, I made this pie. Somebody has to eat it.” Her small, thin lips arched as she held the pie out like an offering. She knew I couldn’t resist her cooking—or any dessert for that matter.

“Okay,” I replied, walking back towards the kitchen. The three of us sat together around the table and they asked me how my night was. They knew it was my anniversary so I told them about the surprise picnic, leaving out the parts where we kissed, and how everything was perfect.

The entire time we talked, there was an eerie silence in their words. They weren’t telling me something. I waited to see if they would mention anything about what they were discussing in secrecy. But they didn’t.

Instead, they continued to smile; my dad rubbed his forehead off and on and talked about their weekend. The following day was a work day. Another reason I was surprised at their late night. In the midst of talking, my father mentioned we needed to have a family night soon. I loved them a lot, but what was the difference of a family night and any other night we spent together? It’s always been the three of us. Basically every time I was home, it could be called a family night.

After an hour of eating way too much pie, I gave them each a kiss on the cheek and headed to my room for some much needed sleep. They stayed behind and talked some more. I made no effort to eavesdrop this time.

The next morning, my mom was cooking breakfast and humming in the kitchen over the stove. A touch of sadness hung on the end of each note. She and I ate breakfast together and we took our daily regimen of vitamins before I headed to the lab. It still felt somewhat new, my position assisting Doctor Benton in his current research, and as I walked out the door, my mom came behind me and squeezed my hand.

“Have a lovely day at work,” she said, “love you.” Her eyes were as calm and sincere as her words.

I looked back at her with a mixed expression of love and sorrow, guessing she must still be thinking of Madeline after whatever they discussed last night.

“Love you too, Mom,” I replied and gave her a kiss on the cheek before darting down the sidewalk.

The test center was located adjacent to the Academy on the opposite side of the courtyard. Doctor Benton’s lab was on the eighth floor. Every morning I cringed as I climbed the stairs, unsure of how the skinny structure kept from toppling over. I was sort of scared of heights. Though Jessie assured me it wouldn’t fall. Jessie. She was the doctor’s first assistant. When she graduated to the next security level, he requested me. My grades at the school were exemplary; the best in my class. She stayed behind for a few weeks to help train me and was kind enough to communicate about the doctor’s habits. He was someone who followed every rule in the handbook and only studied in the area specified to him. He had a specific way he liked everything done and insisted all the beakers face a particular direction. If I forgot to wear gloves during tests, he made clear he’d fire me without hesitation.

“There’s no room for error.” I heard him say this over and over again during my first few weeks of being there. Jessie silently chuckled as he said it and mouthed the words alongside him. Of course he didn’t see her, but I did. And we became good friends after that.

As I walked up the stairs, I passed many others headed off to their labs, each of them wearing long black coats like me. Most people in our building didn’t care to show off as much of our skin as those in the Academy. Our vines weren’t as numerous as theirs, really not much to show. The visible power expressed by vines wasn’t as important to those in the labs. Our power was in our brain. We were smart.

Training of the new cadets had to be taking place. Rapid gunfire echoed in my ears, which was something only allowed within the Academy walls. Only those with written authorization had clearance to own a gun, unless used for practice within training sessions. Every firearm assigned only functioned with the correct corresponding DNA of its owner. This helped keep the possibility of thievery to a minimum. Of course, there’s always going to be someone selling them illegally to the Lowers.

The smell of biochemical compounds began filling the staircase as my hands guided up the metal railing. Every floor had a door with a carded electronic entrance. I scanned my nametag hanging around my neck and the green light flashed, unlocking the hefty door.

I didn’t know why the door had to be so heavy and had a hard time pushing it open and flinched as it immediately slammed behind me. The blonde-haired receptionist sat with her back perfectly straight and wore a solemn look as she nodded me past. I wondered when the day would come she’d acknowledge me with more than a nod. Maybe a wave or a hello of some sort? My rubber sole shoes squeaked against the hallway floors and I turned through the plastic curtains. Doctor Benton removed all but one of the doors on this floor, allowing him quick access in and out of each laboratory room. It was more efficient this way.

My father works two stories above me, however I never saw him. His job began hours before mine and normally ended hours after mine too. His clearance level exceeded everyone on my floor, and it didn’t matter that I was his daughter, I was not allowed anywhere except for on the eighth floor. When I was first requested to work here, I signed a contract stating my knowledge and understanding that if I were to break any codes, it would be seen as a personal violation and I could be exiled from this Land.

“Believe me,” I told the lady and man duet, “I promise, I will not be doing anything I’m unauthorized for.” The last thing I’d ever want is to be sent out on a boat to the other Land. All the kids here learned early on about the other Land. The rumors were it became the home for all the settlers who contracted the plague when our Land was established. The sickness ran rampant, killing massive amounts of people. Rapidly, a vaccine was created to kill the disease. But instead of simply stopping the plague, it permanently restructured our genetic cell makeup, forming the never-ending veiny vines all over our skin. Sadly, the vaccine didn’t work on everyone. For those unfortunate people, they were forced to leave our Land and move to the other. To this day, the rumor is a variety of diseases has taken over that land and anyone who survived the plaque now lives permanently disfigured from a mesh pile of illnesses.

President Falcon took over after his predecessor appointed him prior to dying of old age, and he is covered from head to toe with marked vines, the strongest of all of us. He probably has abilities we don’t even know about.

Every once in a while, not often, someone is born without vines. If the lines don’t appear within days of their birth, then the parents are given a choice to either leave with them for the other Land or be executed. Not surprising, most choose the option of sailing to the other Land. But they know no matter what they choose, they’re choosing death. A large body of water, miles wide, is the only thing dividing our two islands. But it’s so far away we can’t even see it.

President Falcon has expressed more than once his distaste over the decision these families are forced to make. “Nobody deserves this,” he said, “but the last thing this Land can handle is a mass outbreak again. We have no choice. We must uphold the rule.”

All of us can feel his pain when the former choices have to be made. However, we’re all too aware of what another outbreak could mean. It very well may kill us all if it were to ever happen again. Twice a month, President Falcon assigns a few officers the dangerous task of delivering food and supplies to the other Land. I don’t think they actually stop on the Land itself, for fear they’ll catch a disease, but instead anchor far enough away, letting the tide bring the supplies the rest of the way in.

Chills ran down my back and I shuddered at the mere thought of the other Land. The stench must be overwhelming from all the deceased.

I began today in the lab like every other, pulled petri dishes ready for fluorescent examination and placed them in chronological order along Doctor Benton’s rollaway table. They’re each made of glass. If I were to break one by accident, it would destroy the bacteria we’ve been growing for months. We’re trying to narrow down the search of a specific bacteria strain and in turn create viable medicine. Two years ago, a noticeable influx of sicknesses became apparent. Not many have died, but my fears are heightened nonetheless. It has taken months and months of research before finally narrowing the microorganisms down to the correct form.

Doctor Benton pushed through the plastic curtain, translucent tablet in hand, as he walked over to the table where I was categorizing. He tapped a few buttons on the screen and shut it off before placing it in the desk’s drawer.

“How are we doing today Miss Penny? I trust everything is in precise sequence and you’ve followed all the safety regulations?”

“Yes Doctor Benton,” I replied.

When I first started working here, I found out very quickly never to use the term Mister instead of Doctor. Apparently, the former is a sign of disrespect and every other doctor agrees. “They’re ready now.” I stacked the last dish onto the end of the never-ending rows and

helped roll the table out the doorway and down the hall to the only room containing a door. Doctor Benton scanned his ID and instantly the door unlocked, a slight suction sound escaped, breathing from the secured fit.

I became stiff and the cold air from inside the room flowed across my arms causing a slight shiver. Once inside, we walked around the table towards the glass box hanging on the wall encasing our safety specs—goggles. The goggles are sanitized overnight with an automatic spray and it was another protocol we wear them. The stiff air in the room wasn’t harmful to our lungs but it caused irritation to the eyes without the goggles. I grabbed mine after the doctor grabbed his and proceeded to follow him back to the table. In unison, we rolled to the contained area at the end of the room.

The rest of the day, I helped him analyze and study every single dish—it took hours. We skipped lunch just so we could finish by late afternoon.

“That’ll be all, Miss Penny. Thank you for your help. See you tomorrow, same time.” The doctor gestured away from him with his hands as he continued staring into the microscope. I replaced my goggles in the box and walked back out the door to get my things from the other room. Halfway down the hall, my ID badge started beeping and flashed a bright red color in the top corner.

Anxiously, my fingertips held the tiny plastic edge and a message scrolled across the screen:

– LAND MEETING 18:00 HOURS – LAND MEETING 18:00 HOURS – LAND MEETING 18:00

The meeting wasn’t what concerned me—the red flash did. Only three colors were used to inform the Land what type of meeting was expected, and red has never been used before, not since I had been alive. The red meant urgent, attendance mandatory. It even applied to the people residing in the outer areas within the perimeter, the Lowers. According to the law, if someone didn’t come, individual punishment would follow.

Links:

Goodreads: http://dawnhusted.weebly.com/safe.html

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com

Nook: http://www.barnesandnoble.com

New Book Release: The Super Spies and the Pied Piper by Lisa Orchard

It’s Here! The third book in the Super Spies Series! Below are the cover, blurb, and an excerpt! Check it out!

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Sarah Cole and her sister Lacey are at it once again when they learn their missing parents’ cell phone has been traced to Alden, Michigan. When the FBI declines to continue the investigation, Sarah takes matters into her own hands. She calls upon the Super Spies and they delve into the situation. Suddenly, the teens find themselves immersed in small town intrigue and mystery involving a menacing stranger, who Sarah dubs “The Stalker.” But when Sarah learns he’s connected to her parents’ disappearance, she’s determined to find out what that connection is. The Super Spies embark on a journey that leads them into a web of corporate corruption at its highest level that leaves innocent victims in its wake. Can they find the proof they need to stop the greedy corporation before it’s too late?

Excerpt:

Chapter One

“What do you mean you lost them?” Sarah Cole fidgeted as she waited for Agent Gray to answer. I can’t believe it! He lost the only clue to our parents’ location. What is wrong with this picture? Agitated, Sarah shifted in her seat and chewed on her lip. She was uncomfortable in the folding chair and rearranged her petite frame so she wouldn’t feel the cold metal against her bare legs. Shivering, she glanced around the all-too-familiar room.

The gray cement block walls no longer gave her that creepy, closed-in feeling she’d used to get when she first came to the interrogation rooms. She remembered the first time she’d been in that tiny space. It had been the day she’d discovered the Cat Lady’s dead body. Sarah shuddered at the memory and then smiled when she remembered forming the Super Spies and bringing the Cat Lady Killer to justice. Glancing around the room again, she realized she’d been in this room quite a bit these last few weeks, not only during the Cat Lady investigation, but the High School Bomber investigation as well. Shivering again, Sarah rubbed her arms but she really wasn’t cold. Her mind filled with the image of the bomber the Super Spies had helped apprehend just a week earlier.

Wow! Was it just last week?

She tugged at a lock of her honey colored hair, then brushed it away with an impatient hand. She sighed and glanced at her younger sister. Lacey sat beside her with her legs crossed, jiggling her foot at such a rapid rate it seemed like her whole body was electrified. She caught Sarah’s eye and for a moment her eyes glittered like emeralds before she shifted her gaze to Aunt June, who had placed her hand on Lacey’s leg in what appeared to be an attempt to quiet her. Sarah shifted in her chair and sighed again. Are we ever going to find Mom and Dad?

A commotion out in the hall drew everyone’s attention. Sarah leaned forward

and craned her neck to see what was happening.

“Chief, we’ve got an OD!” An officer yelled.

“What?” Chief Johnson yelled as he rushed by. “An OD on what? Give me the details.”

“The parents found their son unconscious in his room this morning, and an empty bottle of prescription medication on his bedside table.”

“What was it?” Chief Johnson asked.

“It’s Myodine.”

“Who makes it?”

“Ah… Piper Drugs.”

“Call Poison Control with the name and manufacturer and ask them what to do about an overdose. Instruct the parents to get their son to the hospital pronto,” Chief Johnson ordered.

“They’ve brought him here.”

“What?” Chief Johnson exclaimed.

The sound of policemen rushing through the hall pulled Sarah and her sister out of their seats. They hurried to the door, unable to stifle their curiosity. Peering down the corridor, Sarah caught a glimpse of a young man sagging between two officers as they desperately tried to keep him on his feet. One officer gently slapped his face while the other officers held him up. The young man blinked and then gagged, puking on the officer in front of him.

The rancid stench of fresh vomit filled the air. While plugging her nose, Sarah ducked back inside the interrogation room, followed by her sister. Sarah closed the door, hoping it would keep the smell from penetrating the room.

“Did you hear that, Lace? Piper Drugs! That’s the company Dad works for,” Sarah whispered in her sister’s ear before proceeding back to her seat.

Lacey opened her mouth to speak, but closed it when Agent Gray cleared his

throat and motioned for them to sit down.

He continued his conversation as if they hadn’t been interrupted. We were on our way to the location of the ping… but before we got there it disappeared.”

“So, what does that mean? Did you find our parents or what?” Sarah blurted out as she sat down. She stared into Agent Gray’s icy blue eyes, trying to read his

To celebrate this new release the first two books are on sale for $.99! Check it out! It’s a series you won’t want to miss!

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This book opens in a small town in Michigan where fifteen-year-old Sarah Cole is stuck spending the summer at her Aunt and Uncle’s with her sister, Lacey. She’s not happy with the situation until she befriends a girl named Jackie. The three girls stumble upon the ruthless murder of a reclusive neighborhood woman. One of the officers investigating the crime believes the girls are responsible for her death. Fearing that this officer will frame them for the murder, the girls organize their own detective squad. They become the Super Spies and start their own fact-finding mission.  The Super Spies can’t understand why anyone would want to murder the “Cat Lady” until they start digging into her past and discover a horrible crime that happened thirty years ago. They uncover a connection between the two crimes and attempt to bring this information to the police, only to be reprimanded for meddling in the inquest. Not only are the girls upset by the admonition, but they also struggle with the fact that their exuberant investigating could provide a legal loophole allowing the killer to go free. To make matters worse, the police don’t even believe them. Frustrated by this turn of events, the Super Spies realize it’s up to them to snare the Cat Lady killer, or die trying…

Get you copy of The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer at

Astraea Press:  http://www.astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/id=10078468

Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Super-Spies-Lady-Killer-ebook/dp/B007JZH61K

Barnes and Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-super-spies-and-the-cat-lady-killer-lisa-orchard/1109518725?ean=2940014338202

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This book opens in a small town in Michigan where Sarah and her sister Lacey are now living with their Aunt and Uncle. Still reeling from the fact her parents have disappeared, Sarah starts the school year with her new friend Jackie Jenkins. When Sarah learns the school has been bombed, she’s filled with dread. Uncle Walt is a teacher, and he was in the school when the bomb exploded. Taking matters into her own hands, Sarah decides to search for him. The rest of the Super Spies are right behind her. When a fireman chases them away from the school, Sarah becomes suspicious. She decides to investigate. The FBI arrives on the scene. Sarah realizes this bombing could have even bigger implications. Searching for the bombers, Sarah is introduced to the world of terrorism. She fears that the bombing and her parents’ disappearance are connected and terrorists are involved. To make matters worse, the bombers are determined to finish the job. Can the Super Spies find the bombers before it’s too late?

Get your copy of The Super Spies and the High School Bomber at

Astraea Press:  http://www.astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/id=13594238

Amazon:   http://www.amazon.com/Super-Spies-School-Bomber-ebook/dp/B008P8O7OY/

Barnes and Noble:   http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-super-spies-and-the-high-school-bomber-lisa-orchard/1112263058?ean=2940014992244

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Lisa Orchard grew up loving books. She was hooked on mysteries by the fifth grade and even wrote a few of her own. She knew she wanted to be a writer even then. “The Super Spies and the High School Bomber” is the second book in the “Super Spies” series. Her first book was published in March of 2012 and it has received rave reviews.
After graduating from Central Michigan University with a Marketing Degree she spent many years in the insurance industry, pining to express her creative side. The decision to stay home with her children gave her the opportunity to follow her dream and become a writer. She currently resides in Rockford Michigan with her husband, Steve, and two wonderful boys. Currently, she’s working on the third novel that stars the same quirky teens. When she’s not writing she enjoys spending time with her family, running, hiking, and reading.

You can find Lisa Orchard at

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lisa-Orchard/328536613877060?ref=hl

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lisaorchard1

Website:  http://www.lisaorchard.com/

New Book Release: Breaking Wave by Danielle Sibarium

We love when one of our favorite authors comes out with a new book. We especially love when this book is a sequel. We have been counting down the days for this release since we read Heart Waves. We are so excited to let all of you know Breaking Waves is officially out. Pick up your copy today.

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From the moment they met, Jenna knew Reece would break her heart, but she never dreamed it would happen like this. Jenna is left shattered and broken. When life becomes too painful to deal with and she feels completely alone, there’s only one person to help her pick up the pieces and move on. The one person she doesn’t want to turn to. The one person she promised to stay away from. Tyler. Can Jenna put aside everything she knows about him and let Tyler help heal her broken heart?

Other books by Danielle Sibarium

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