Entries tagged with “Paranormal”.

Win a copy of Touching the Surface! Details at the end of this post.

Chapter 1

the other side of the surface

My body smacked the water. Thoughts scattered like a handful of beads dropped on a bare wood floor. I gasped for air  and the current rushed in. My throat burned. Panic, thrashing, spots of light exploding in my head. Surrender. I sank softly down…until…fingers wrapped around my wrist, yanking me out of the water. As my head broke the surface it all became clear. I had died…again.

I stood on the end of the dock that jutted out toward the middle of the lake, fingering the silver eagle feather charm that hung in the hollow below my neck. The chain tangled in the short hairs below my ponytail. I was stunned and spots bounced in front of my eyes.

Excerpt copyright © 2012 Kimberly Sabatini

About the book:

Experience the afterlife in this lyrical, paranormal debut novel that will send your heart soaring.When Elliot finds herself dead for the third time, she knows she must have messed up, big-time. She doesn’t remember how she landed in the afterlife again, but she knows this is her last chance to get things right.

Elliot just wants to move on, but first she will be forced to face her past and delve into the painful memories she’d rather keep buried. Memories of people she’s hurt, people she’s betrayed…and people she’s killed.

As she pieces together the secrets and mistakes of her past, Elliot must find a way to earn the forgiveness of the person she’s hurt most, and reveal the truth about herself to the two boys she loves…even if it means losing them both forever.

What people are saying:

“This gorgeous, lyrical read will sweep you away.”–JESSICA VERDAY, bestselling author of THE HOLLOW trilogy

“Soulful and inventive. A thoroughly original vision of what happens next.” –DAISY WHITNEY, author of the MOCKINGBIRDS

Released: October 30, 2012

About the author:

Kimberly Sabatini is a former Special Education Teacher who is now a stay-at-home mom and a part-time dance instructor for three and four year olds. She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley with her husband and three boys. Kimberly writes Young Adult fiction and is represented by Michelle Wolfson of Wolfson Literary Agency. TOUCHING THE SURFACE is her debut novel. (Simon Pulse – Simon & Schuster, October 30, 2012). Visit her at: http://kimberlysabatini.com.


Kimberly has been kind enough to contribute a copy of Touching the Surface for a giveaway!

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on November 14th at midnight EST.

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower on Twitter or like us on Facebook [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win a signed copy of Henry Franks! Details at the end of this post.

Spanish moss, bleached to gray in the heat, stretched down from the trees and the breeze barely stirred the air. From his bedroom window, Henry watched oak branches reaching for the house, close enough to scratch against the bricks. The marshes surrounding St. Simons Island reached to the horizon, flashing with light where the rising sun reflected off the water.

With the blinds pulled up, he pressed his hands against the glass. Scar tissue ringed his index finger like jewelry made of flesh, matching the bracelet on his left wrist and the necklace of scars circling his neck. More snaked around his legs, beading with sweat in the Georgia heat.

Henry closed his eyes, took a deep breath and then counted to ten. A pushpin stuck out of the wall next to the window and he grabbed it without looking. A branch grated across the house with a hiss that seemed almost alive.

Where the sharp metal point broke the skin of his right index finger a single bead of blood welled up. He opened his eyes, took another breath and then counted again.

Against the glass, he pushed the pin the rest of the way into his finger. Blood ran like rain down the window but Henry Franks didn’t feel a thing.

Excerpt copyright © Peter Adam Salomon

About the book:

One year ago, a terrible accident robbed Henry Franks of his mother and his memories. The past sixteen years have vanished. All he has now are scars and a distant father—the only one who can tell Henry who he is.

If he can trust his father.

Could his nightmares—a sweet little girl calling him Daddy, murderous urges, dead bodies—help him remember?

While a serial killer stalks their small Georgia town, Henry unearths the bitter truth behind his mother’s death—and the terrifying secrets of his own dark past.

Sometimes, the only thing worse than forgetting is remembering.

 What people are saying:

“Salomon’s Frankenstein homage churns through its often confounding but highly unnerving plot like a slow nightmare—readers won’t be entirely sure they even want to know how it ends. The scenes are clipped, the dialogue spare, and the prose rewards meticulous reading, making this debut the thinking teen’s horror choice of the year.”–Booklist, Starred Review

Released: September 8, 2012

About the author:

Peter Adam Salomon graduated Emory University in Atlanta, GA with a BA in Theater and Film Studies in 1989 and earned his CICP (Certified International Credit Professional) designation from NACM (National Association of Credit Management), FCIB (The Association of Executives in Finance, Credit and International Business) and Michigan State University in 2006.

He has served on the Executive Committee of the Boston and New Orleans chapters of Mensa as the Editor of their monthly newsletters and was also a Judge for the 2006 Savannah Children’s Book Festival Young Writer’s Contest. He is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, the Horror Writers Association and The Authors Guild and is represented by the Erin Murphy Literary Agency. His debut novel, HENRY FRANKS, will be published by Flux in September 2012.

Peter Adam Salomon lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with his wife Anna and their three sons: André Logan, Joshua Kyle and Adin Jeremy. You can visit him at www.peteradamsalomon.com and learn more about his novel at www.henry-franks.com.


Peter has been kind enough to contribute a signed copy of Henry Franks for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower on Twitter [+1 entry].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on October 3rd at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win a copy of The Exceptionals! Details at the end of this post.


I only hesitated for a moment. I wrapped my hands around the thick black wire and pulled with all of my strength. I felt the energy surge through my body. Everything went from blindingly bright, to gray, then slowly faded to black. I knew this was how it was going to end; in truth I was glad to have it finally over with.

They say your life flashes before your eyes when you are about to die. Mine didn’t – well, not exactly, anyway. My story played out in my head, at least the part that led me to where I am now, lying peacefully on the forest floor.

Tom, a boy I had a crush on for years, finally asked me to the Spring Fling last March. We went with Tom’s best friend Joey and his girlfriend Amber. Not the brightest bulb, Joey tried to sneak beer into the dance when everyone knew the police would be checking the cars. Surprise, surprise, we got caught.

Lakeville High a few days ago, and I would not be dying right now. And yet, if I had to do it over, I wouldn’t change a thing. Well, maybe one thing. I wish I had written it all down, so everyone would know how I ended up like this, and more importantly, that I had no regrets.

I would begin on that blustery March night, and this is what I’d write….

Copyright © 2012 Erin Cashman

About the book:

In a famous family of exceptionally talented people, fifteen-year-old Claire Walker is ordinary . . . or so she leads everyone to believe. Yet the minute she steps out of line, her parents transfer her to Cambial Academy: the prestigious boarding school that her great-grandfather founded for students with supernatural abilities, or “specials”. Although Claire can’t see ghosts or move objects with her mind like the other students, she does have a special she considers too lame to admit: she can hear the thoughts of animals.

Just as she is settling in, one by one the most talented students – the Exceptionals – go missing. In an attempt to find out what happened to them, Claire uncovers a dark prophecy involving a plot to destroy Cambial and a mysterious girl who can communicate with a hawk. Could she be that girl? Does the gorgeous but secretive boy she meets in the woods know more than he is letting on? After years of ignoring her special, Claire decides the time has come to embrace her ability . . . before it’s too late.

What people are saying:

“Debut novelist Cashman delivers an engaging, exciting twist on the school story, introducing readers to a whole new set of supernatural skills and adventures. With its varied and intriguing cast of characters, The Exceptionals will appeal to a wide range of readers, all of whom will be eager to see if there will be forthcoming adventures at Cambial Academy.”–School Library Journal

Released: April 1, 2012

About the author:

Erin Cashman grew up in Framingham, Massachusetts. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Bates College and from Boston College Law School. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and three children. You can visit her at www.erincashman.com.


Erin has been kind enough to contribute a copy of The Exceptionals for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower on Twitter [+1 entry].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on April 18th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win a signed copy of The Gathering Storm! Details at the end of this post.


 Fall 1888, Saint Petersburg, Russia

An afternoon spent solving quadratic equations would have been infinitely more pleasant. I smelled like a salad. Cucumber slices for soothing puffy eyes. Blackberry vinegar for brightening dull skin. Goat’s milk and honey for softening rough hands. I politely declined when my cousin offered a pinch of her goose lard and pomegranate facial cream.

It was Friday afternoon and our lessons had been cancelled at the Smolny Institute so everyone could prepare for the ball. Because dressing up like a doll was much more important than studying literature or learning arithmetic.

Matrimony. That was the true mission of the Smolny Institute for Young Noble Maidens. It was nothing more than a meat market for Russia’s nobility, where princes from all across Europe sent their daughters, intending them to marry off well. So there I sat, Katerina Alexandra Maria von Holstein-Gottorp, Duchess of Oldenburg. Great-great-granddaughter of Empress Josephine on my mother’s side, great-great-great-granddaughter of Katerina the Great on my father’s side. Princess of the Royal Blood. Royal meat for sale. I would have rather been dead.

Once I told Maman I wanted to attend medical school and work at one of Papa’s hospitals in Saint Petersburg or Moscow. I always accompanied her to the Oldenburg Children’s Hospital when she made her charity visits at Christmas and Easter. I thought it would be wonderful to take care of sick children and discover cures for diseases. But Maman was horrified at the idea.

“What man would marry a doctor?” she asked, not bothering to wait for an answer. “What a foolish notion!”

Excerpt copyright © 2011 Robin Bridges

About the book:

A royal court steeped in magic.

A dark prince with a hideous plan.

A young girl with a forbidden power.

St. Petersburg, Russia, 1888

As she attends a whirl of glittering balls, royal debutante Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, tries to hide a dark secret: she can raise the dead. But when she uses her special skill to protect a member of the Imperial Family, she finds herself caught in a web of intrigue.

What people are saying:

“Bridges could become a worthy successor to Libba Bray with this historical fantasy. Her lush settings, secret rituals, and paranormal creatures make for an atmospheric political adventure… Katiya is a strong female hero whose further adventures are worth following.”–Voya

“An atmospheric and complicated vampire tale that’s worth the effort of reading it.”–Kirkus

“An imaginative, complex blend of history and magic.”–Publishers Weekly

 Released: January 10, 2012

About the author:

By day, Robin is a mild-mannered writer of fantasy and paranormal fiction for young adults. By night, she is a pediatric nurse. Robin lives on the Gulf Coast with her husband, one soon-to-be teenager, and two slobbery mastiffs. She likes playing video games and watching Jane Austen movies. THE GATHERING STORM is her first novel. You can visit her at www.robinbridges.com.


Robin has been kind enough to contribute a signed copy of The Gathering Storm!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on January 26th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Win a copy of Dearly Departed! Details at the end of this post.



I was buried alive.

When the elevator groaned to a stop in the middle of the rocky shaft, I knew I was buried alive. Trapped thousands of feet below the earth’s surface and hundreds above the bottom of the shaft, dangling in a ten-by-ten foot cage over the bowels of the very mine I had been so freaking relieved to get work in.

I pulled myself to my feet and pushed my best friend Jack aside, hitting the button that controlled the elevator. I hit it again and again, wailed my fist on it. Nothing. The glass-paned lantern dangling from the ceiling flickered wildly as the kerosene within dwindled, as if it were attempting to ward off its own death with bursts of exaggerated life.

Dread became a solid, burning thing within me, something twisting my own flesh to its will, speeding my heart and making my skin slick with sweat. Before I knew it was coming up, I doubled over and retched through the grated floor. Jack sat calmly beside me as I heaved, his bloody eye sockets and the gaping wound in his throat mocking me, mocking my attempt to rescue him. He looked like some kind of hellish funhouse clown.

The dam broke, and I finally started screaming. At Jack. At God. At everything. There was nothing left to do but scream. I hadn’t screamed when the monsters had descended on us. I hadn’t screamed when I’d had to run from them, or fight them, or when I’d dragged Jack to the elevator, blood bursting from the hole in his neck. Everything had happened so quickly, it’d seemed there’d been no time to scream.

Excerpt copyright © 2011 Lia Habel

About the book:

A cyber-Victorian/steampunk romance – with zombies.

Almost two hundred years in the future, Nora Dearly lives in a world of bustled gowns, fake manners, watery tea, and uppity lords and ladies.

Thank God the zombies came to rescue her.

Dragged into the night by the living dead, Nora soon finds herself fighting for the father she thought long gone, the friend she was forced to leave behind – and the love of a handsome, noble young army captain.

Who just happens to be a walking corpse.

Released: October 18, 2011

About the author:

Lia Habel was born in Jamestown, NY, and has lived there the majority of her life. Her first book, Dearly, Departed, is a sweeping tale of zombie-living romance set in a cyber-Victorian/steampunk future. When Dearly, Departed sold, Lia was swimming in debt incurred from her studies and years of un- and underemployment, with only a few dollars to her name. Miss Habel enjoys attending anachronistic and steampunk events, watching zombie movies (she has watched over a hundred of them), commissioning ball gowns, and collecting Victorian and Edwardian books. She is incredibly grateful for the opportunities she has recently been given. You can visit her at liahabel.com.


Lia has been kind enough to contribute a copy of Dearly Departed for a giveaway!

Just comment on this post to enter.

For extra entries:

-Be a follower of this site (just click “Join this site”) or a follower on Twitter [+1 entry each].

-Link to this contest on Twitter, Facebook, etc. [+1 entry per each link].

Please list your extra entries in the comments.

The contest is open in the US and Canada, and ends on October 18th at midnight EST.

Good luck and happy reading!

Bridget stared at the clock on the wall and cursed its painfully slow progression toward three fifiteen. Was the big hand even moving? She slipped her cell phone out of her backpack for cross-reference. Damn. Seven more minutes. It was so like a Catholic school to make Latin the last class of the day. Institutionalized Purgatory.

“Hey,” Hector whispered from the desk in front of her. “Want to hit House of Pies after school?”

“Maybe.” The last thing Hector needed was another slice of Triple Chocolate pie.

“Maybe?” Hector swiveled his torso around to face her. “You got a hot date or something?”

Before Bridget could tell Hector to shove it, Peter Kim cleared his throat. “Shut up, you guys. Sister Evangeline’s going to kill us.”

Bridget glanced at the wizened little nun sitting motionless at her desk, engrossed in a romance novel. “Live a little, Peter. Seriously.”

Excerpt copyright © 2011 Gretchen McNeil

About the book:

Enlisted to help in dangerous cases of demonic possession, a teenaged exorcist discovers a race of part-demons intent on raising their forefathers to the earth in human form.

What people are saying:

“With demons, secrets, and a butt-kicking heroine, POSSESS is a whole lotta dark and twisted fun!”–Kimberly Derting, author of the Body Finder series

“A dark, unique, and intelligent novel with frightening twists around every corner that left me breathless.”–Courtney Allison Moulton, author of ANGELFIRE

Released: August 23, 2011

About the author:

Gretchen McNeil is an opera singer, writer and clown.  Her YA horror/paranormal POSSESS debut with Balzer + Bray for HarperCollins, August 23, 2011.  Her second novel, TEN – YA horror/suspense about ten teens trapped on a remote island with a serial killer – is tentatively scheduled for a Fall 2012 release. Gretchen is a former coloratura soprano, the voice of Mary on G4’s Code Monkeys and she currently sings with the LA-based circus troupe Cirque Berzerk. Gretchen is also a founding member of the vlog group YARebels where she can be seen as “Monday.” You can visit her at www.gretchenmcneil.com.


It starts with a crack, a sputter, and a spark.

The match hisses to life.

“Please,” comes the small voice behind me.

“It’s late, Wren,” I say. The fire chews on the wooden stem in my hand. I touch the match to each of the three candles gathered on the low chest by the window. “It’s time for bed.”

With the candles all lit, I shake the match and the flame dies, leaving a trail of smoke that curls up against the darkened glass.

Everything seems different at night. Defined. Beyond the window, the world is full of shadows, all pressed together in harsh relief, somehow sharper than they ever were in daylight. Sounds seem sharper, too, at night. A whistle. A crack. A child’s whisper.

“Just one more,” she pleads, hugging the covers close. I sigh, my back to my little sister, and run my fingers over the tops of the books stacked beside the candles. I feel myself bending.

“It can be a very short one,” she says.

My hand rests against an old green book as the wind hums against the house.

“All right.” I cannot deny my sister anything, it seems. “Just one,” I add, turning back to the bed. Wren sighs happily against her pillow, and I slip down beside her. The candles paint pictures of light on the walls of our room. I take a deep breath.

“The wind on the moors is a tricky thing.”

Excerpt © 2011 Victoria Schwab

About the book:

The Near Witch is only an old story told to frighten children. 

If the wind calls at night, you must not listen. The wind is lonely, and always looking for company. 

And there are no strangers in the town of Near.

These are the truths that Lexi has heard all her life. But when an actual stranger—a boy who seems to fade like smoke—appears outside her home on the moor at night, she knows that at least one of these sayings is no longer true.

The next night, the children of Near start disappearing from their beds, and the mysterious boy falls under suspicion. Still, he insists on helping Lexi search for them. Something tells her she can trust him.

As the hunt for the children intensifies, so does Lexi’s need to know—about the witch that just might be more than a bedtime story, about the wind that seems to speak through the walls at night, and about the history of this nameless boy.

What people are saying:

“Romantic, haunting, and truly original—The Near Witch cast a spell on us from the very first page.”–Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, NYT bestselling authors of Beautiful Creatures and Beautiful Darkness

“Victoria Schwab has crafted a richly atmospheric and lyrical masterpiece. This novel mesmerized me from the first line to the last.”–Carrie Ryan, New York Times best-selling author of The Forest of Hands and Teeth

Released: August 2, 2011

About the author:

Victoria is the product of a British mother, a Beverly Hills father, and a southern upbringing. Because of this, she has been known to say “tom-ah-toes”, “like”, and “y’all”. She also possesses a dangerous case of wanderlust, and a penchant for staring at clouds. You can visit her at www.victoriaschwab.com.

Chapter 1

I thought by the time I’d transferred to the Kansas and Arkansas Valley Railway, this foolish tendency to jump at every sound, to blush each time someone looked me in the eye, would have subsided. If Papa had been sitting next to me, he’d have patted my hand, his mustache curving into a smile. “All the world’s a stage, Willie,” he’d have said, “and you’re playing your part out of necessity, as have many before you.”

But Papa was dead, and the space next to me was empty. Staring at that void, I knew in my heart I was something much worse than a player on the world’s stage. And more than the summer heat made the perspiration trickle down the back of my neck. I jumped and blushed and perspired for good reason.

I was a liar and a thief.

The conductor called all passengers aboard, and I breathed a sigh of relief. But before I had time to celebrate my solitude, a young man bounded up the steps of my car and slid into the opposite seat. I stiffened, bracing myself for the prying questions strangers asked so freely of young ladies traveling alone. But he only removed his hat and, with a quick nod to me, slumped against the window with his eyes closed. The train jerked into motion with a great metallic screech, but even this did not rouse him. Grateful, I turned back to the window and studied what I could of Van Buren, Arkansas, branding my memory with details of the landscape before we entered Indian Territory.

Excerpt© 2011 Sonia Gensler

About the book:

When Willie arrives in Indian Territory, she knows only one thing: no one can find out who she really is. To escape a home she doesn’t belong in anymore, she assumes the name of a former classmate and accepts a teaching job at the Cherokee Female Seminary.

Nothing prepares her for what she finds there. Her pupils are the daughters of the Cherokee elite—educated and more wealthy than she, and the school is cloaked in mystery. A student drowned in the river last year, and the girls whisper that she was killed by a jealous lover. Willie’s room is the very room the dead girl slept in. The students say her spirit haunts it.

Willie doesn’t believe in ghosts, but when strange things start happening at the school, she isn’t sure anymore. She’s also not sure what to make of a boy from the nearby boys’ school who has taken an interest in her—his past is cloaked in secrets. Soon, even she has to admit that the revenant may be trying to tell her something. . . .

What people are saying:

“This first novel effectively covers a good deal of ground: race and class issues, history, and a compelling ghost and love story are all entwined as plot points are teased out a bit at a time. The uncommon setting and time period add to the appeal . . .”–Booklist

“This debut presents an intriguing look at a little-known piece of American history . . . the well-drawn characters and suspenseful plot should keep readers fully engaged.”–Kirkus

“Gensler makes a solid debut with an eerie and suspenseful work of historical fiction in which everyone is a murder suspect . . . Readers should be drawn in by the mystery and moved by Willie’s struggles to fit in and negotiate her independence.”–Publishers Weekly

Released: June 14, 2011

About the author:

Sonia Gensler grew up in a small Tennessee town and spent her early adulthood collecting impractical degrees from various Midwestern universities. A former high school English teacher, she now writes full time in Oklahoma. So far, her husband and cat are putting up with this. The Revenant is her debut novel. You can visit her at www.soniagensler.com.

A gray hall monitor in wrinkled clothes walked silently in front of Jana on her way to the school counselor’s office.

Grays moved so quietly that even when you were with one you felt alone. Their hearts weren’t in anything they did. Jana opened the door to the office, expecting to be greeted by someone.

There was a wide oak desk in the middle of the room with toys arranged on it. The room smelled like furniture polish. Antique arcade machines lined the walls to either side. The green leather chair behind the desk was occupied by a half-size dummy of a clown. Its face was enameled white, with an orange red nose in the middle. Red paint outlined a pair of wide-open lips. A red wooden tongue rested inside the clown’s hinged mouth.

“Knock, knock,” Jana said. “Anybody here?”

If the clown answered, she was leaving.

Excerpt© 2011 Randy Russell

About the book:

Jana loved her boyfriend to death.

What people are saying:

“Not your usual paranormal romance. Romeo and Juliet meets Daniel Waters in folklorist Randy Russell’s wry teen debut…Wickedly clever.”–Kirkus, starred review

“Randy Russell has created the ultimate paranormal romance but has also infused a dark comedic element that sets the novel apart from others in the genre.”–Ruta Sepetys, author of Between Shades of Gray

“It’s humiliating to die in a bowling accident, especially when it means going through the afterlife in a pair of bowling shoes. Even more serious for high school junior Jana Webster is the separation from her one true love, Michael…Laughter, for Russell, is not an act of mockery or ironic distance, but rather a marker for empathy with his very human characters.”–Publisher’s Weekly

Released: June 21, 2011

About the author:

Randy Russell lives in the woods in Western North Carolina.  He writes ghosts and dead people. You can visit him at www.ghostfolk.com.


To enter Randy’s “The Dead Rules Giveaway to Support Teen Reading” for a chance to win $500 in free books of a reader’s choice and $1,500 in free books to classroom teachers and librarians–all through independent bookstores–visit www.ghostfolk.com/free.asp. The contest ends July 31, and you get a free Dead Rules button just for entering.


“I believe that myths, like every living thing, are born, degenerate and die. I also believe that myths come back to life.”—Octavio Paz

Consuela wrestled with an armload of jeans, trying to catch the hangers on insufficient hooks. Squeezing into the tiny dressing room, she tugged on the first pair. No good, she pulled them off. Tried another pair. And a third. Step-step on, step-step off; a ten-minute workout in a three-by-three space. It was as if the room was specifically designed to make her feel big. Consuela hated how she looked in jeans. It made her want to eat a donut.

Eventually she found two pairs that weren’t too bad; the question was whether they were worth buying. Consuela compared price tags. She didn’t like the jeans enough to buy both. It was tough to feel good when clothes were made for size-four white girls. She felt heavy, unsuccessful, and annoyed—the exact opposite purpose of her coveted shopping therapy break.

Screw it.

Consuela pulled her T-shirt over her head, unhooked her bra, and posed for herself a few times, half-naked in the dressing room mirror. She flashed a smile over her shoulder, feeling better than she had all morning. Perfect white teeth, no cavities—her smile was her best feature.

Getting dressed, she decided to keep one pair of light denims and hand the rest back with the two plastic, yellow #6 cards. She hung the remaining eleven hooks neatly in her palm for easy counting. The baggy old attendant had glared at her earlier as if she suspected Consuela of shoplifting. Like she could hide a pair of True Religions in her cleavage. She could all but hear her best friend, Allison’s, voice in her head: You know, you probably could! Allison could always make her laugh.

Consuela held her head high as she stopped at the dressing room exit. The old woman lifted her hangdog eyes.

“Find anything?” the woman asked, only because she had to.

“Yes, thank you.”

The gnarled, arthritic hands took the jeans as a sudden lurch of vertigo brought Consuela to her knees.

Excerpt© 2011 Dawn Metcalf

About the book:

Sixteen-year-old Consuela Chavez suddenly and inexplicably finds herself in the parallel universe of the Flow, where she and other teens with extraordinary abilities safeguard a world where they no longer belong.

What people are saying:

“LUMINOUS is a stunning debut, a remarkably original fantasy with a wonderful heroine that effortlessly mixes beauty and horror. I found LUMINOUS an utterly intoxicating, entirely magical feast, and I can’t wait to return to the vibrant world of the Flow.”–Karen Healey, GUARDIAN OF THE DEAD

Released: June 30, 2011

About the author:

Dawn Metcalf grew up in an old Victorian home filled with fairy tales, art supplies, magic, and love. Now she writes about myths that never happened and worlds that might have been. She lives in Connecticut with her two cats, two kids, and amused husband, raising the next generation of wild imaginations. You can visit her at www.dawnmetcalf.com.