Can't-Wait Wednesday #22: Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson

Wednesday, January 23, 2019


When I first started book blogging back in 2015 I starting to participate in  “Waiting On Wednesday”  that was a weekly meme that was originally created by Breaking The Spine.  Unfortunately Breaking the Spine is no longer hosting so I’m now linking my posts up to Wishful Endings Can’t Wait Wednesday. Don’t forget to stop over, link up and check out what books everyone else is waiting for.


Here Is My Can't Wait Wednesday Pick For This Week:


Title: Sorcery of Thorns

Author: Margaret Rogerson

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Publication Date: June 4th, 2019 by Margaret K. McElderry Books







From the New York Times, bestselling author of An Enchantment of Ravens comes an imaginative fantasy about an apprentice at a magical library who must battle a powerful sorcerer to save her kingdom.

All sorcerers are evil. Elisabeth has known that as long as she has known anything. Raised as a foundling in one of Austermeer’s Great Libraries, Elisabeth has grown up among the tools of sorcery—magical grimoires that whisper on shelves and rattle beneath iron chains. If provoked, they transform into grotesque monsters of ink and leather. She hopes to become a warden, charged with protecting the kingdom from their power.

Then an act of sabotage releases the library’s most dangerous grimoire. Elisabeth’s desperate intervention implicates her in the crime, and she is torn from her home to face justice in the capital. With no one to turn to but her sworn enemy, the sorcerer Nathaniel Thorn, and his mysterious demonic servant, she finds herself entangled in a centuries-old conspiracy. Not only could the Great Libraries go up in flames, but the world along with them.

As her alliance with Nathaniel grows stronger, Elisabeth starts to question everything she’s been taught—about sorcerers, about the libraries she loves, even about herself. For Elisabeth has a power she has never guessed, and a future she could never have imagined.





I absolutely loved and enjoyed An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson when I first read last year, I really want to continue to check out her new books when they come out. And this one looks and sounds absolutely fantastic and right up my alley plus looks at the gorgeous cover as well.







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Spotlight: One Century Friendship by Littlebean Seeds

Tuesday, January 22, 2019




Hello, my friends today I am doing a spotlight on One Century Friendship by Littlebean SeedsI hope you enjoy the spotlight!






Title:  One Century Friendship

By  Littlebean Seeds

Genre:  Children Short Story 
Publication Date: January 20th, 2019 by Independently Published Add-On Goodreads
You might be wondering, “How long does a friendship last?”
If you ask Helen Macland, she will tell you, “More than a person’s lifespan.”
You say, “Is that possible?”
“Yes, if you meet Hollace William,” she will reply.



Author  Littlebean Seeds



Little Bean Seeds (LBS) is a Certified Public Accountant who lives in Hong Kong. She has known herself to be a bookworm ever since she was a primary school student. While most of the other children were running and jumping in the playground during break time, she would go to the library and stick her face in a book until the bell rang. She loves many different kinds of books—self-help, detective, romance, finance, health—and more.

In her eyes, books are one of the best channels for communicating messages. LBS perceives a writer’s role as like that of a farmer planting seeds. What she wants is for her readers to understand the book’s message and be helped in some way: have their mood changed, be pleased and entertained, or even encouraged to build a better self. The seeding job takes time, and it is better to start the seed earlier than later. That is why she chose to get her writing start with children’s stories, and also where the pen name “Little Bean Seeds” came from.

Writing is also about stepping out of one’s comfort zone. That is actually much easier to say than to do, especially when no one in your social network doing the same thing, saying, “It is just too difficult for me!” But most of the time, the difficulty comes from yourself more than those around you.

LBS would like to hear thoughts on this from others too. Share with her your story about stepping out of your comfort zone on "jump out of the comfort zone" in her website.

If you have anything want to share, feel free to contact me at littlebeanseed@gmail.com






Thanks!

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Release Week Blitz & Giveaway: Stolen (Stolen, #1) by Marlena Frank



I am so excited that STOLEN by Marlena Frank is available now and that I get to share the news!
If you haven’t yet heard about this wonderful book by Author Marlena Frank, be sure to check out all the details below.
This blitz also includes a giveaway for a $10 Amazon Gift Card, International, courtesy of The Parliament House and Rockstar Book Tours. So if you’d like a chance to win, enter in the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.


Title: STOLEN (Stolen #1)
Author: Marlena Frank
Pub. Date: January 22, 2019
Publisher: The Parliament House
Formats: Paperback, eBook
Pages: 342
Find it: GoodreadsAmazonB&NiBooksKobo

It’s difficult taking care of a delusional father by yourself. Sixteen-year-old Shaleigh Mallet would rather explore and photograph dilapidated buildings than cater to her father’s dark episodes. But when she’s kidnapped by a creature who carries her atop a flying bicycle into another world, she realizes this wasn’t the escape she wanted.

In a kingdom known as the Garden, where minotaurs pull carriages and parties are held in hot air balloons, Madam Cloom and her faerie servant, Teagan, rule over the land with incredible but terrifying magic. Shaleigh must prove that she is the reincarnation of a long-dead ruler, not because she believes it, but because it’s her only chance to survive. With the help of a trespassing faerie, a stoatling, and a living statue, Shaleigh hopes to outwit everyone. She aims to break the bonds of servitude and finally make her way home. What she doesn’t realize, however, is that she’s playing right into the hands of a far worse enemy...

Book Trailer:


Excerpt:
PART I
FREEFALL


AN EMBARRASSMENT

Shaleigh didn’t think about how much concrete and steel stood over her head as she stepped carefully down the decaying hallway of Ferris Factory. The building had been abandoned for so long that the mildew and fungus ran rampant from the moisture that crept down the crumbling walls, so a respirator was a requirement. Ferris Factory was only two stories tall from the outside, but the floors underground felt endless. The elevator shaft only went down three floors when it had been operational; the rest of the floors could only be reached with the stairs. She doubted any of it had been inspected by the fire marshal.

Her best friend, Kaeja, walked so close behind that she could feel her warm breath on the back of her neck. The only sound that echoed up and down the hallway, besides their footsteps, was the snap of Shaleigh’s camera. The photos were why they risked their lives to explore dangerous places: to document the decrepit. It was thrilling to explore a place that nobody else would see. Eventually all the walls would fall, and Ferris Factory would decay into memory. Shaleigh and Kaeja would have the only remaining proof it even existed, especially since it was clear that nobody was supposed to know about this section of the factory.

A rat skittered out of a heap of moldy paperwork and Kaeja took a deep breath until it passed. “This is the worst one yet. By far.” Shaleigh grinned, though her respirator concealed it. “Come on, we had to come back and take the stairs down. We couldn’t just end it at the base of the elevator.”

“Do you see that?” She swung the flashlight to the side. “I couldn’t even hang a picture on that wall. Four floors down was enough, five floors is just begging to get hurt.”

Kaeja was right, the walls of the hallway curved inward like a bow string. Shaleigh hadn’t noticed how bad it was until she mentioned it. “We’ll be quick.”

She snapped as many photos as she could while Kaeja held the flashlight. It illuminated a good portion of the hall, but the beam had little effect against the thick, sick air. The light ought to have made the place more inviting, but it only made the shadows darker. It was hard for Shaleigh to keep her hands steady for the photos; fear and exhilaration kept combating within her. Sure, this place was terrifying and could collapse at any moment, but the thought of capturing a world that would never been seen again, of documenting the forgotten before it disappeared, made her tap the shutter button of her camera faster. "I wish we had more time. I'd love to look inside some of these rooms."

"Not me," Kaeja said, her eyes shadowed by the reflections of the flashlight on her mask. "These halls are creepy enough, thanks." The light flashed across some metal scraps against the bowed wooden wall. It was hard to tell if it had been left behind by the workers, or if it had fallen from the ceiling. "Didn't they used to make cars here?"

"Sure, that's it." Shaleigh snorted as she tapped on a dirt-encrusted sign that warned visitors that the hallway was a high security corridor. "Whatever helps you sleep at night."

"It's an old building, but that doesn't mean they were hiding anything down here."

"Then what's with the high security? They had to be doing something illegal down here. The maps we found don't even show these floors. I heard it used to be a hospital,”
Shaleigh glanced back to her with a smile. “Dad heard it from a colleague at work. They used to keep dangerous people here.” Kaeja stared at her, the beam from the flashlight in her hands trembling.

A high-pitched squeal of metal echoed down through the insides of the building, as though the entire structure was shifting under its own weight. The squeal turned into a groan that shook the very floor beneath their feet. Both teens froze, barely daring to breathe as debris fell from the ceiling. Seven levels of exhausted steel, wood, and plaster shifted over their heads. They stood in silence waiting for the walls to give way, waiting to be buried beneath the rusty metal beams, discolored linoleum floors, and rat-infested insulation; but the building remained steady.

The noise stopped. Particles drifted in the air.

"It doesn't sound very good, does it?" Shaleigh whispered.

"I don't like it. I don't care what you say, this is the lowest I'm going. Five levels below ground is far enough."

Shaleigh stifled a laugh, "That's what you said when we found the stairs."

A high-pitched noise erupted down the hall causing both teens to jump. It didn't sound metallic...it didn't sound like the building at all.

Kaeja stared down the hallway with wide eyes. The noise broke into a whimper, and then there was silence. It only lasted maybe a few seconds, but they both knew what they had heard. Someone was down there with them.

Shaleigh turned to look behind them, but without the flashlight beam it was too dark to see anything. "Was that—was that behind us?”

Kaeja spun around, temporarily blinding Shaleigh in the process. "I don't know. I thought it came from in front of us."

The darkness felt like a cage all around them. The beam of the flashlight, darting forwards and backwards down the hall, seemed so small and insignificant now. Someone was in the darkness. Someone was watching them. Shaleigh stepped around Kaeja and started back toward the stairwell. "We should go."

Kaeja grabbed her arm and Shaleigh could feel her clammy fingers through the sleeve of her jacket. "Are you crazy? You said that's where it came from."

"How else are we going to get out of here?"

Kaeja could give no argument and shook her head. "Shaleigh..." she whimpered.

"It's okay, we'll do it together." She put her camera around her neck and took Kaeja's hand. They walked slowly towards the door of the stairwell, side by side, fingers clasped in a death grip.

For a moment, Shaleigh thought she saw movement ahead of them and stopped. Kaeja must have seen it too because she swept her flashlight left and right, searching for whatever it was. Just before the beam of light reached one of the doors, Shaleigh was certain she spotted a shadow move into one of the rooms.

"Ow..." Kaeja whispered giving their joined hands a tug. Shaleigh realized she had been gripping too hard and loosened her hold but didn't say a word. Her eyes were fixed on where the shadow had been. As they drew closer, an arm stretched out, hairy with long, black fingernails, and pulled the door closed. There was a splash as though something heavy had fallen into a pool of water from behind the door.

Kaeja screamed. A bolt of adrenaline hit Shaleigh and she grabbed Kaeja's arm. Together they ran. As they passed the door, the knob began to turn with a creak. She wasn't sure if Kaeja had seen it or not. "Keep going!" she yelled, all pretense of caution forgotten.

Once the stairwell came into view, they sped up. Shaleigh slipped on a wet spot and her foot skidded. She would have sprained her ankle if she hadn’t grabbed for the wall. What a stupid way to die, she thought as she regained her footing. She had to keep her head straight, because panicking in an old, decrepit building was a sure way to get hurt or killed by whatever was after them. She forced them to slow down to climb over a pile of broken boards and nails. Shaleigh had thought it odd to have it so close to the stairwell when they’d first come down, but now she saw it as a marker, a warning perhaps, to keep trespassers out. As she helped Kaeja down the opposite side of the rubble, she heard limping footsteps approaching them.

"It's coming!" Shaleigh cried and together they sprinted for the stairwell. The flashlight bounced beams off the walls.

They hit the metal door like a battering ram, shoving it into the rusted railings of the stairs, causing it to reverberate like a gong up and down the concrete shaft. Shaleigh gripped the metal rail, feeling the flecks of paint come off on her hands, and the raw rust beneath. She exchanged a glance with Kaeja, both trying to catch their breath. The respirator was humid with her breathing and she couldn’t wait to rip it off when they got outside. She looked up the dark stairwell above them and grimaced. There were too many floors between them and safety.

Kaeja gasped and reached out to grab Shaleigh’s arm. Shaleigh stared at her. She thought she could make out footsteps from the hall they just left, but it was so faint it was hard to make out. It could have just been the sounds of the building, but she didn’t want to take any chances. Taking a deep breath, Shaleigh led the way as they started up the stairs.

One floor, two floors, three floors.

Was that the sound of the doorknob beneath them being turned? Kaeja hurried to her side as they continued to climb. Both were audibly gasping now. It wouldn’t take much for their pursuer to know where they went. Shaleigh’s thighs were burning. She could sprint up a flight or two of stairs, but this was tough. It didn’t help that she was already out of breath before they even started climbing.

"What if it's locked us in?" Kaeja asked between sucking in gulps of air.

Shaleigh didn't respond. She didn't want to even consider that option.

They climbed two more flights of stairs. Kaeja reached the door first. They both let out a sigh of relief when the door opened. Panting, they jogged to the main exit, a pair of massive iron doors that looked like they belonged in a mausoleum. Neither of them said a word as they descended the short flight of broken steps to the grass. Shaleigh ripped off her respirator, Kaeja did the same, and they both exchanged grins as they crossed the grass-pocked concrete walkway. It felt good to feel the heat of the day on her skin too. The sun was sinking in the west, but the air was sweet with wild honeysuckle and a light breeze rustled the old oaks. Shaleigh relaxed a bit but could tell by Kaeja's expression that she wouldn’t be able to relax until they had left the property completely.

The concrete walkway fell away to tall grass that came up to their hips, as they sidestepped small pine trees that were beginning to take over the lot and moved further away from the building. The chain link fence that surrounded the property sported multiple warning signs for trespassers, though they were faded from exposure. Kaeja pulled back the corner of fencing they had used to get in, and they both climbed through without saying a word. Kaeja paused, took a deep breath, and relaxed her shoulders.

"I know you'll hate to hear this, Kaeja," Shaleigh started. "But I think I'm done with Ferris Factory for a while."

Kaeja laughed. "No complaints here. I’m going to add that we never go underground again either. I am not running up that many stairs again, no matter how great you say the pictures will be." Shaleigh couldn’t help but laugh. The downtrodden path through the woods made it a short walk to reach the bus stop. Shaleigh unwrapped the scarf from around her head and shook out her twists. The breeze felt wonderful on her scalp. They dropped everything into Shaleigh's backpack as they walked. The main road was surprisingly empty for a Sunday afternoon. After exploring inside of decomposing buildings for a while, she had new respect for even the simplest things. The bench for the bus stop, covered in graffiti and bearing a single broken board, looked like a luxury.
Kaeja sprawled across the broken wooden bench and covered her eyes with her arms.

"Wow, what a rush!"

"I know!" Despite her smile, Shaleigh still glanced over her shoulder, as though expecting the person from the building to be slinking toward them through the woods.
"What do you think it was?"

Kaeja stared up into the sky. "Someone crazy, I'm sure. It's a good thing they made some noise. I don't like the thought of them sneaking up on us like that." She sat up and patted the bench beside her.

Shaleigh obliged, her legs were still shaky. "Did you see that hand?"

Kaeja shuddered, "Looked like he hadn't seen the light of day in forever." She stretched her arms over the back of the bench. "This is exactly why I don't like the big ones. There are too many hiding places."

"The small ones aren't much better," Shaleigh added. "Sometimes it feels like a shot right out of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, you know?"

Kaeja nodded and the two grew silent from their own nerves. Kaeja’s leg jumped up and down, as though at any moment she would jump up into a sprint. Shaleigh kept resisting the urge to look over her shoulder once more. The bus couldn't come fast enough.

"Ugh, I need to think about something else." Kaeja said with a tense smile. "You've got a party coming up tonight, don't you? You get to get all dolled up. I know you don't like the people much, but I do envy you getting to go."

Shaleigh sighed. "I had almost forgotten about it.” She checked her watch. It was a good thing they had left when they did because she still needed to get home and clean up. “If you like it so much, you can totally go for me."

"Your dad would never let me. He needs you there."

"Unfortunately."

Kaeja scooted closer and put an arm around her shoulders. "I'm sorry. I guess that is pretty hard on you. Do they ask you a lot of questions about him?”

Shaleigh nodded. She hated the tight feeling she got in her chest whenever she thought of those stupid parties. She hated the fact that she had to go. Why in the world did Roseworth College have so many of them anyway? It was like they wanted to torture her.

Deciding to change the subject, she picked up her camera from around her neck. After checking to make sure nothing had been damaged in their mad dash, she asked, "Want to see the pictures?"

Kaeja nodded but looked concerned. Shaleigh ignored it.

The brilliant light of the flash somehow made the dark halls of Ferris Factory less frightening, less dangerous. If only people were so easy to strip of fear.



About Marlena:

I write about strange creatures. Typically they shouldn’t exist, or they have bled through from a different reality, or they’re pretending to be a crying baby in a crib. Sometimes that lands my stories in horror and other times in fantasy, but there’s always an air of strangeness to my tales. If you want to get a better feel for what I’m talking about, check out a few clips or read a few drabbles.

My work has appeared in a spattering of short story collections, but I do have a few novellas and novels in the pipeline. Other than talking about writing, I also talk about cryptozoologywerewolveswildlife conservation, and of course kitties. I’ve also been known to nerd out about Batman and The Hobbit, and have recently discovered the cracktastic fun of Black Butler cosplay, so there will likely be more of these incidents.

By day I work as a web developer, so I’ll occasionally talk about web issues like finding the right theme.

Giveaway Details:

1 winner will win a $10 Amazon Gift Card, INTERNATIONAL.




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Release Day Blitz & Giveaway: Drago (Made Men, #6) by Sarah Brianne


Today we have an exciting release day blitz for Sarah Brianne’s DRAGO! Check it out and be sure to grab your copy today!

Title: DRAGO

Author: Sarah Brianne

Genre: Romance

About Drago:

Drago is the protector, willing to risk his life for the Carusos. Katarina is a Luciano, protected only by her brothers. Gunned down by her Family, he is seeking vengeance. Chosen by his, she’s forced to unite their blood.   Marrying her might just be his sweet revenge. Marrying him would be a marriage made in hell.   I’m just a f**king bodyguard. I’m the f**king devil’s daughter.

Get Your Copy Today:

Amazon | iBooks | Nook | Kobo

About Sarah Brianne:

Hey! My name is Sarah Brianne and after living for twenty-two years the characters in my head told me enough was enough and I have finally put pen to paper (or is it finger to keyboard?) to tell their stories. Since I was a little girl I have watched every chick flick I could get my hands on, then when I became older I discovered a whole new world of romance novels. To me there is nothing better then a tale of true love and those are the stories that have inspired me to write. Like everything else in my life I have put my own spin on two lovers destined to be together.

Connect with Sarah:

Website | Facebook | Email | Goodreads | Instagram | Snapchat | Twitter

Enter Sarah’s Giveaway:

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Release Day Launch & Giveaway: Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGarry

 

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

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

 

About ONLY A BREATH APART:

They say your destiny is carved in stone. But some destinies are meant to be broken.

The only curse Jesse Lachlin believes in is his grandmother’s will: in order to inherit his family farm he must win the approval of his childhood best friend, the girl he froze out his freshman year.

A fortuneteller tells Scarlett she's psychic, but what is real is Scarlett’s father’s controlling attitude and the dark secrets at home. She may be able to escape, but only if she can rely on the one boy who broke her heart.

Each midnight meeting pushes Jesse and Scarlett to confront their secrets and their feelings, but as love blooms, the curse rears its ugly head…

 

Amazon | Kobo | Google Play

B-A-M | Barnes & Noble | Apple Books

     

Gritty and real, Only a Breath Apart is a story of hope conjured from pain, strength drawn from innocence, and love earned from self-respect. Beautiful, poignant, and fierce.” ―Kristen Simmons, critically acclaimed author of the Article 5 series

 

Add it to your Goodreads today!

    


EXCERPT: ~SCARLETT~ A scraping of a chair, a tray full of food and I glance over with my practiced smile in welcome. It’s not Camila, Evangeline, or anyone else from the group. It’s green eyes, red hair, a familiar mischievous smile that used to be reserved only for me, and my blood pounds with excitement as if someone lit a sparkler in my chest. Then I frown because I’m not supposed to feel this way. Not with him. Not with anyone. Jesse Lachlin winks at me as he sits across from me like no time has passed from when we climbed trees together. “What’s up, Tink?” Another thrill runs through me but then my muscles tighten. Stupid, antiquated reaction belonging to a dead past. “What are you doing here?” Jesse pops a fry into his mouth, chews, then picks up another as if he has no intention of answering. I scan the cafeteria. Several people are watching us, curious as to why Jesse Lachlin is sitting with me, or is event at lunch, or even at school. From the lunch line, Camila’s and Evangeline’s eyes are bugging out of their heads. What is going on? Camila mouths. I raise my eyebrows to inform her I have no idea. Jesse digs into his corn with his fork and that’s crossing a line. “Maybe you didn’t hear me, but I asked what you’re doing here.” He lifts his eyes to meet mine and there’s a glimmer in them that causes my lips to flatten. Fantastic. He’s here to make my life a living hell. “It seems obvious,” he says. If he remembers anything about me, he should recall I was never known for my patience and that he should be speaking, and speaking soon. “Just answer the question.” “I’m eating lunch.” I honest to God groan in frustration. “There’s no room at the inn.” He surveys the table, takes in the empty seats, my books, and then gives me a good look. A slow look. As if he’s trying to memorize every inch he’s drinking in. My cheeks redden because that somehow feels a little too intimate for lunch. Feels a little too intimate for someone I’m no longer friends with. It feels too intimate if we were friends. I glance away, but I sense him still staring at me. God help me, I want to stare back.    

  Katie McGarry Bio: Katie is the author of the PUSHING THE LIMITS series, THUNDER ROAD series, SAY YOU’LL REMEMBER ME, and the upcoming YA novel, ONLY A BREATH APART. Her novels have received starred reviews, critical acclaim and have won multiple awards including being a multiple Goodreads Choice Award Finalist for YA Fiction, multiple RT Magazine's Reviewer's Choice Award Finalist for Best YA Fiction, including a win in the category, and she was a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick.      

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads | Pinterest | Tumbler | Instagram

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Release Day Blitz: Ashes to Ink (Montgomery Ink: Colorado Springs, #2.5) by Carrie Ann Ryan

Are you ready for more Montgomery Ink? Carrie Ann Ryan's ASHES TO INK is available now - read an excerpt below and get your hands on it today!

 

About ASHES TO INK

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Carrie Ann Ryan comes a new story in her Montgomery Ink series…
Back in Denver, Abby lost everything she ever loved, except for her daughter, the one memory she has left of the man she loved and lost. Now, she’s moved next to the Montgomerys in Colorado Springs, leaving her past behind to start her new life.
One step at a time.
Ryan is the newest tattoo artist at Montgomery Ink Too and knows the others are curious about his secrets. But he’s not ready to tell them. Not yet. That is…until he meets Abby.
Abby and Ryan thought they had their own paths, ones that had nothing to do with one another. Then…they took a chance.
On each other.
One night at a time.
**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you'll enjoy each one as much as we do.**

ASHES TO INK is available now!

 

 

Watch the trailer for ASHES TO INK:

 

Read an excerpt from ASHES TO INK:

She pulled into Ryan’s driveway, right next to his car, and let out a breath. She’d been right. He was home. She didn’t want to say that he was going to pay for leaving her like that, but it would be pretty damn close. Anger surged through her veins. She wasn’t mad at Ryan, she was angry that he’d given up. But his life had been dealt another blow, and he had turned around and done the same to her. Well, that just wouldn’t stand. She slammed the car door and made her way to Ryan’s front door. She rang the doorbell, once, twice, then three times, her hands shaking as she did. Maybe the adrenaline from what had happened at the store was finally wearing off and she was starting to freak out. Well, she could do that later. First, she needed to make sure that Ryan understood exactly what was going on. Because there was no way she’d let it end like this. It was going to end on her terms or his. Their terms. Not Michael’s. She was about to ring the doorbell again when Ryan opened the door, his eyes wide, a closed beer bottle in his hand, and his shirt unbuttoned. It was very hard to concentrate on being angry with him and the entire situation when all she could do was stare at his chest. His very sexy chest. A chest with the perfect amount of hair that made her want to growl, and ink everywhere there wasn’t hair. She really, really wanted to touch that chest. But first, she needed to let her anger out. “Can I come in?” she asked as she pushed her way into the house. She wasn’t usually this forward. In fact, she was usually only this way with her business. Except for when she had been in bed with Ryan. Then, she had been just as forward as he was. And it had been fun. Good. Neither of them fighting for control but pushing each other to go further. To fly over the edge as they came. That had been fun. But her standing up for herself like this? She wasn’t really good at it. But she’d be damned if she let what had happened earlier change and ruin everything. Ryan closed the door behind her and then turned around on his heel. “I guess you can just come in.” “Thanks. We need to talk.” He pinched the bridge of his nose and let out a breath. “I don’t want to hurt you, Abby, but you need to go.” She ignored the little clutch in her belly at his words. She would let him off the hook this time and not get too angry. She wouldn’t lash out at him for pushing her away. She understood the desire, the need. She had done enough of that when she lost Max. But she wasn’t about to walk away just then. “No.”  
 

About Carrie Ann Ryan

Carrie Ann Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of contemporary and paranormal romance. Her works include the Montgomery Ink, Redwood Pack, Talon Pack, and Gallagher Brothers series, which have sold over 3.0 million books worldwide. She started writing while in graduate school for her advanced degree in chemistry and hasn’t stopped since. Carrie Ann has written over sixty novels and novellas with more in the works. When she’s not writing about bearded tattooed men or alpha wolves that need to find their mates, she’s reading as much as she can and exploring the world of baking and gourmet cooking.
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