And here is the last bit. Enjoy - and thanks for hanging out at the pavilion!
Remember - you can enter the contest until October 31, on my website or my Facebook page.
Here we go:
Reluctant monster hunter.
A school project, an absentminded project partner, and a misplaced backpack all change 16-year-old Alex Finch's life forever.
In a single afternoon Alex finds the missing backpack, has a run-in with Sam, the boy she's had a crush on since first grade - and discovers that monsters are real.
That mind-blowing incident throws her life in a completely different direction, uncovering secrets that cost her more than she could ever imagine. And the further she digs, the darker and more dangerous the secrets become.
What else is hiding behind the ordinary facade of her California beach town?
Alex is about to find out.
*Includes an exclusive excerpt of Truth and Consequences, the second Monster Files adventure, coming your way in time for the holidays!
We were at the back of the house, trapped by an eight foot version of the spike tipped wrought iron fence. McGinty must have been one paranoid man. And we weren’t getting out that way.
Before I could stop her, Misty disappeared around the corner. The creature didn’t follow us out the window, like I expected, so it could be anywhere—and that included waiting for us to run out front and straight into its sharp claws.
“Misty!” I tried not to shout her name, but I needed her to hear me. I skidded around the corner and ran right into her. She clutched my injured arm; the pain almost buckled my knees. “God—”
“Sorry.” She snatched her hand away, and saw the blood-smeared gash. “Oh, Alex,” she whispered. “That thing didn’t—”
“Rusty can.” I caught my breath, cradled my throbbing arm. Leaning in, I kept my voice as low as possible. The creature probably had the keen hearing of a wolf, and already pinpointed our position. “I’m going to go first. If I tell you to run, you run. No hesitation, no looking back.”
“What about you?” Her concern left me feeling—odd. No one at school ever . . . Never mind.
“I’ll be right behind you. Promise,” I said, when she gave me the skeptical eye. “Are you okay to run?”
We both looked down at her feet, at the bloody footprints in the dirt. Glass littered the ground, and she obviously found her share of it.
“I’m good. The pain’ll come after, I’m sure.” She tried a smile, failed miserably. I appreciated the effort. Miss Prom Queen kept surprising me. “Don’t play the martyred hero. I really, really don’t want to do the project on my own.”
Before today, I didn’t want to do the project with her at all. Now I wanted to live through this, just to see what kind of awesome we could create. And I don’t use that word often—especially with anything relating to school.
“Just for you.” I hefted the iron leg, my muscles already burning from the weight. “Ready?” Misty let out her breath, nodded. “Wait for my signal, then run like the chess club is after you.”
That got the smile out. The chess club adored Misty, and let her know, in all sorts of creepy, stalkerish ways. “Meet you at the bus stop,” she whispered. “Seriously. You better show.”
“Got it.” I inched along the side of the house, Misty close behind, but out of swinging range. I seriously underestimated her brain capacity. The stench of wet dog hit me before we reached the corner. I touched Misty’s wrist. “When I say go, you hit it. Hard and fast.”
She bit her lip, but nodded. I kept moving forward, both hands on the iron leg. This time I was aiming for that smirking snout. I needed to do enough damage to give me time to reach the sidewalk. That was my get-out-alive goal.
I just hoped I had enough left to cause the damage.
My arm had been bleeding steadily since I cut it, with no time to do anything but pretend it didn’t hurt like hell. Closing my stronger right hand over my left, I moved forward, taking slow, even breaths.
Claws scraped across cement. It was on the walkway—I hoped—leading up to the house. Please, God, don’t let it be on the sidewalk outside the fence.
I took a chance, peeked around the side of the house. And let relief loosen the knot in my gut. The creature sniffed along the middle of the cracked walkway, its back to me. I knew I wouldn’t get another break like this.
Shouting in my head, I ran forward, raised the heavy iron leg and bashed it against the creature’s right flank.
I saw her in my peripheral vision, dashing across the lawn. I scrambled backward, keeping the furious, snarling creature in my sightline.
Without warning it leaped forward. I cried out, ramming into the fence left side first. My injured arm bounced off the wrought iron. The pain shot through me, going straight to my legs, which happily gave in to it, dropping me to the ground.
All my pain-blurred vision saw was a black shape filling the sky. I covered my head with my right arm, made myself as small as possible and braced for tearing agony.
Instead, a startled whine nearly deafened me. Something wet and icy splashed over my right arm, followed by a pair of calloused hands that dragged me up and out of the yard before I could take in a breath to scream.
“Alex!” Misty’s voice pierced through the brain fog. “God, are you okay? Get her away from the fence, Sam. That nightmare could still reach through and—”
“He won’t be hurting anyone, Misty.” Oh, no. Please, let me be hearing things. “You’re safe, Alex. I promise you.”
No—not hearing things. That deep, quiet voice belonged to Sam Emmett—yeah, those Emmetts, as in Emmettsville. I’ve had a secret crush on him since the first grade. I can count on one hand the number of times he’s noticed me. After today, I’ll have to start using both hands—to hide my face every time he walks by.
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Thanks for stopping by, and until next time - read on. :)
About the Author
She loves the supernatural, the odd and the strange, and writing about it is like going to a job she loves - no work and all fun.
She would love for you to join her as she hunts for monsters - real and imagined.
And there's the official biography, out of the way.
I love telling stories, and my four nephews have been a big influence in what I read, and now what I write.
Sliding into YA has been as easy fit, especially since I've been reading and loving it for years.
Alex Finch: Monster Hunter is the first book of a series I have been planning for a while, and I can't wait to introduce you to Alex and her rather quirky friends. :)
To find out more about me and my books, you can hop over to my website:
Hang out with me on my Facebook page: http://facebook.com/cadeanauthor
Or come and exchange tweets at: https://www.twitter.com/cadeanauthor
I look forward to meeting you. :)