Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Zombie West Series by Angela Scott Spotlight ~Kami

ZOMBIES! The Wild West! Romance! Mayhem!
Angela Scott's Zombie West Omnibus has all this, and more!
"...this is one of the most unique concepts I've come across." --Brian, Amazon reviewer
"These books had me on the edge of my seat and at one point in book three I had to set the book down and pull myself out of the story so I wouldn't cry." --Emily Pearce, Amazon reviewer
"This series is one that will stay with you for a long time, prompting you to want to read it again and again." --Tracy Haidle, Amazon reviewer

About the Zombie West Omnibus

Zombie West Omnibus Angela ScottThe Wild West is hard enough to survive with its native territory, wanted outlaws, and harsh terrain, but with a plague turning civilized people into brain-eating monsters, survival becomes nearly impossible. Red has lost everything to the fast-spreading disease: her family, her trust in mankind, and her hope for a better tomorrow. When she meets Trace, a smooth-talking gambling man who’s more city boy than cowboy, she’s forced down a path she’d been avoiding for years. Until his arrival, she’d lived by a certain set of rules—don’t ask names, keep to yourself, don’t let anyone too close—but the jackass of a man won’t let her be, and he has an uncanny knack for appearing at all the wrong times and in all the wrong places. Each, with a secret of their own, will need to learn that only by working together do they have any chance of surviving The Zombie West. That is, if they don’t kill each other first. [Angela Scott’s Zombie West Omnibus includes the three books in the Zombie West series WANTED: DEAR OR UNDEAD, SURVIVOR ROUNDUP, and DEAD PLAINS. Find these books on AmazonBarnes & NobleiTunesKobo, and Smashwords.] Genre classification: YA/Western Romance/Action and Adventure/ with added zombies for utter mayhem.

About Angela Scott

Angela ScottAngela Scott hears voices. Tiny fictional people sit on her shoulders and whisper their stories in her ear. Instead of medicating herself, she decided to pick up a pen, write down everything those voices tell me, and turn it into a book. She’s not crazy. She’s an author. For the most part, she writes contemporary Young Adult novels. However, through a writing exercise that spiraled out of control, she found herself writing about zombies terrorizing the Wild Wild West–and loving it. Her zombies don’t sparkle, and they definitely don’t cuddle. At least, she wouldn’t suggest it. She lives on the benches of the beautiful Wasatch Mountains with two lovely children, one teenager, and a very patient husband. She graduated from Utah State University with a B.A. degree in English, not because of her love for the written word, but because it was the only major that didn’t require math. She can’t spell, and grammar is her arch nemesis. But they gave her the degree, and there are no take backs. Find Angela Scott on her websiteFacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

Get the book!

Find the Zombie West Trilogy on Amazon. Don't forget to add the Zombie West Omnibus to your Goodreads to-read shelf. Connect with Angela Scott on her websiteFacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

ARV-3 (The after life saga #1) by Cameo Renae Review, Giveaway and Excerpt ~Kami

ARV-3 (The after life saga #1)


Seventeen-year-old Abigail (Abi) lives in a post apocalyptic world caused by a solar flare, nuclear power plant meltdowns and an anti-radiation vaccine that caused unforseen side effects. She and her family live in an underground bunker. There is a lot of action. The writing is good.The pacing is pretty good but there is a lot of explanation in the beginning to set up the post apocalyptic world. I thought that slowed down the story a bit but then things started getting exciting once they went topside and encountered the zombie mutants. I think the second half of the book is much better than the first half. I found the story interesting and entertaining. The romance was sweet. Since this is the beginning of a series it ends with a cliffhanger. 4 stars.

The beginning of the end. The Apocalypse.

A nuclear fallout wiped out every living thing on the planet, except for a few thousand of us who took shelter in underground bunkers across the globe. Now, after thirteen long years, we were finally able to return to the topside to begin to rebuild.

We thought we were alone. We were never more wrong.

Before the fallout, scientists had worked on creating an anti-radiation vaccine (ARV). The first two attempts failed, but despite the incomplete tests and results, the government approved and distributed the third serum to the masses in an effort to aid those who had no shelter.

It worked, keeping those who remained on the topside alive, but it also altered and mutated them. This new and infectious threat had completely outnumbered us. Now, we not only had to rebuild our planet. We would have to fight for it.

My name is Abigail Park. I'm seventeen, and this is my story.
Cameo Renae was born in San Francisco, CA, raised in Maui, Hawaii, and recently moved with her husband and children to Alaska.

She loved reading from as long as she can remember, and it was C.S. Lewis' - Chronicles of Narnia - which sparked a fire in her soul and made her want to create her own wondrous, magical worlds and awesome characters to go on adventures with.

In My Dreams & Hidden Wings were both recently published through Crushing Hearts and Black Butterfly Publishing earlier this year. Descent (A Hidden Wings novella) was released May 15, 2013, and Broken Wings (Book 2 in the Hidden Wings Series) was released June 1, 2013.

Her most recent release is ARV-3. A YA Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian novel with a new twist on zombies.

She is currently working on the next Hidden Wings Series book titled: Tethered Wings. No release date yet. :)

One day she hopes to find her own magic wardrobe, and ride away on her magical unicorn... Until then... she'll keep writing!




According to the Mayan calendar, many thought the world was going to end on December 21, 2012. Some stayed home from work and school, some gathered in prayer, while others just blew it off and went on with their daily routines.
That Friday, on the day of the predicted doomsday, the sun rose and set without change. A few days later… life continued.
People crawled from their worried slumps and assumed their normal positions back in the daily grind. Many years passed, with no signs of world destruction. In no time, talk of the end of the world had dissipated like a foul smell caught in the winds.
Unbeknownst to the public, NASA had been giving warnings to the government of impending natural disasters, but they were never officially broadcast to the general population because it was all considered… “theory”. No one really knew what was going to happen. No one expected anything.
Behind closed doors, the government began preparations for building large, underground bunkers that would survive any type of apocalypse. Only select military personnel, and a handful of the world’s leading scientists, were privy to this information.
They knew it wasn’t a matter of if it was going to happen - it was a matter of when.



The sun aligned with the Milky Way galaxy, causing a gravitational pull, tugging on the sun’s surface. This caused a massive solar storm to erupt.
It was a solar storm of maximum proportions, labeled Class-X, and it triggered the beginning of the end. As soon as the mass ejection entered the earth’s atmosphere, it completely collapsed the national power grids, shutting down all navigational and communication systems across the globe. Millions were suddenly thrust into darkness.
The solar flare not only disrupted the earth’s magnetic field, causing thousands of birds and fish to die instantly, it also set off massive earthquakes and volcanic activity. Those who were at higher altitudes were exposed to massive doses of radiation from the sun.
Terror and chaos, along with widespread rioting and looting, broke out across the globe.
But that wasn’t the worst of it.
Over four hundred nuclear power plants were operating across thirty countries. Very few nuclear power plants were “walk away safe”. Even fewer had backup generator pumps which relied on large tanks of water for cooling the containment shells. Without electricity, it was only a matter of days before the unimaginable would befall.
Every nuclear power plant was a ticking time bomb, and most were running on battery power alone.
A majority of the population had no inclination their days were numbered. Within a span of about ten days, nuclear fuel would begin to melt through containment rods, sending out vicious, unspeakable amounts of radiation into the atmosphere.
There was no way to give warnings without communication.
The government, and a select few, started emergency evacuations into their underground bunkers around the world. Even the Doomsday Preppers withdrew to their own shelters, which left the rest of humanity unprotected, with no means of survival.
After the solar flare, skies everywhere danced with the most beautifully colored auroras. The beauty… before the beast.
All those who didn’t prepare, panicked, and ran to the few shelters set up by the governments. Shelters which were completely useless against the oncoming horror.
A handful of scientists had been working on a new serum, an anti-radiation vaccine, which was supposed to aid the body in resisting the absorption of radiation. The first two versions failed, causing the lab animals to become crazed and subsequently, die.
With the end swiftly approaching, the governments made an urgent and ill-advised decision. In an effort to keep the world’s populations from revolting and storming the emergency bunkers, they gave the people some kind of hope, offering reassurance that a vaccine had been created which would save them.
So, despite a lack of proper testing or receiving positive results, the government not only approved the third anti-radiation vaccine, it was mass produced. They used helicopters, which had been strategically kept protected against the electromagnetic pulses, for distribution to the shelters.
The helicopters were given orders not to land, but to simply drop the crates of serum, and head back to the bunkers. The risks of landing were too great.
Thousands panicked, storming the shelters; hundreds were killed in the name of survival. Many brandished guns or other types of weapons, and used them to try and secure vaccines for themselves and their families.
Meanwhile, secret bunkers around the world were filled to capacity and locked down.
Amidst all of this mayhem…it began.
The end of all things.
The Apocalypse.

One by one, nuclear power plants across the globe began meltdown. Due to their size, a number of them exploded like atom bombs, spewing massive doses of radiation into the atmosphere. Slowly and quietly, the invisible death stalked, and was believed to have eventually killed every living organism on the topside.
Scientists estimated it would be a minimum of ten years before any form of life could safely set foot on the topside. Even then, many areas of the earth would be uninhabitable.
This is where I come in.
My name is Abigail Park. I’m seventeen, and this is my story.

Excerpt #1:

I walked up to the tarp and knelt down next to it.
Abi, I don’t think you want to do that,” Finn whispered behind me.
Why?” I breathed. My fingers brushed the rough fabric.
Because, it’s just not a good idea,” he said.
He knew that wasn’t a good enough answer for me. This was something I needed to see now. I needed to know what I was up against, so that I wouldn’t freak out and freeze when I saw it for the first time, alive. This was my way. I knew myself best, and I didn’t like surprises.
My fingers carefully wrapped around the edge of the tarp and then slowly lifted. I gasped, but couldn’t tear my eyes away. Milky white eyes were wide and steeled on me. There was a strong, putrid smell the mask could not block.
The creature was completely hairless, and its skin was creased with countless wrinkles, appearing scabrous and leathery. It was horribly pale. Purplish blue veins protruded and snaked all over its body.
Its eyes were sunken deep into its skull; the teeth were horribly rotted and looked as if they’d been sharpened at some point. Each finger was bony and curled. The nails were long and sharp, covered with filth. I tried to search for anything that resembled humanity, but there wasn’t much left. It was a sickly, horrifying mutation.
Thick crimson liquid was seeping from a bullet wound to its chest. It was something right out of a worst nightmare. Suddenly its hand shot up and touched my arm.
I screamed and jumped back into the sturdy arms of Finn.
Don’t worry. It’s dead. It’s just the muscles reacting to random impulses from the nerves,” Dr. Banks said, covering the body back up.” I don’t think the others should see this.”

Excerpt #2:

I turned and shot at every creature coming, but as soon as one dropped, another two took its place. All of our efforts were useless. This was it. This would be our final resting place. We’d come out from the safety of our hive, surviving thirteen years underground, to die.
God. If you’re out there, we desperately need your help. Please,” I cried to myself. Tears streamed down my face, after witnessing what happened to Dr. Lisa.
Kaboom!!! A huge explosion rattled the whole mountain, sending a bunch of rocks tumbling and crashing down all around us.
What the hell?” Sergeant Powell yelled, covering his face from the falling debris.
Then we heard it. Our redemption. There was a God, and he sent someone to save us.
Two choppers were headed our way, and in a matter of minutes a machine gun started firing and dropping the Arvies surrounding us. They even dropped a few grenades on the side of the mountain. The sound of gunfire and explosions were the most beautiful sounds I’d ever heard.
Death. It was all around us.

Excerpt #3:

I woke on a day like any other. As soon as I opened my eyes, I saw Tina standing there, right in front of me. I gasped, almost smacking her.
What?” my tired voice cracked.
Guess what?” She squealed, too loud for this early in the morning.
She clasped her hands over her mouth, and her eyes were smiling.
Tina, it’s too damn early to play guessing games,” I huffed.
Okay!” Bouncing up and down, her excitement couldn’t be contained, “We’re going to the Garden of Eden today!”
Yaaaay,” I cheered sarcastically. Her expression told me my reaction was not what she expected.
Abi, you have no idea! No idea at all! I can’t wait to see your face.”
So when will this face-altering event be?”
After breakfast. So get moving.”
Her excitement pushed me out of bed, and had me stumbling towards the bathroom. After a hot shower, I was up and had changed into the awesome white scrub uniform-thing we wore every single day. Every drawer was filled with the same colorless clothes.
This will be good for you, Abi,” she said.
I hope so. I need something good.”

Giveaway: A print copy of ARV-3 with an ARV-3 Swag Pack.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Because the Night (The Night Songs Collection #1) by Kristen Strassel

Because the Night (The Night Songs Collection #1)


18-year-old Callie is in Las Vegas trying to find Tristan who is now a member of a vampire rock band. Callie meets Blade. I read the prequel novella Seasons in the Sun first and maybe I would have liked it better if I had read it after this book. This one is completely different. The novella is a young adult sweet summer romance and this one is paranormal romance. Tristan's self-destructive tendencies became so out of hand that he went to Vegas and became a vampire. Callie is still chasing after Tristan though Blade is a welcome distraction. Beware of the cliffhanger ending. 4 stars.

Kristen shares a birthday with Steven Tyler and Diana Ross. She spends each day striving to be half as fabulous as they are. She's worn many hats, none as flattering as her cowboy hat: banker, retail manager, fledgling web designer, world's worst cocktail waitress, panty slinger, now makeup artist and author. Kristen is represented by Pam van Hylckama Vlieg of Foreword Literary.
         Twitter @kristenstrassel

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Charred Heart (Heart of Fire #1) by Lizzy Ford Review, Excerpt with Giveaway ~Kami

Charred Heart (Heart of Fire #1)


Chace is a cursed dragon shifter who wants to be human again. Skylar is a dragon slayer tracking Chace. When Sky meets Chace she is immediately attracted to him and this book gets really steamy and erotic. Chace's heart doesn't start beating until he meets Sky, his other half. He is her dragon. The shifters don't know why their people are disappearing and Sky doesn't really know the truth about who she is working for. The writing is really good. The pacing is good. The characters are very interesting and I liked them a lot. This book was romantic and there was a lot of exciting action. I am excited to read the next book in this series. I loved this book and these characters a whole lot. 5 stars.

A modern day retelling of “Beauty and the Beast”
***Recommended for ages 18+ due to multiple, creative, detailed, steamy, sexy-time adult situations.***
For a thousand years, Chace has searched for a way to break the curse placed on him by a jilted lover. He’s a dragon shifter, one who can’t control when the magic will force him into a different form. He’s already lost everyone he ever cared about a few times over and doesn’t know how much longer he’s meant to suffer.
At his wit’s end, he makes a deal with a mysterious figure that offers him what he wants most – an end to his misery – in exchange for everything that’s his: His life, his power. His heart.
The next day, he meets Skylar, a modern day dragon slayer whose mission is to cage him – or kill him. Sexy, witty and brave, she is the yin to his yang, the woman destined to break the curse, balance his magic and make his broken heart whole.
Except it’s too late. Not only has he sealed his fate, but an innocent one-night-stand with Skylar has dragged her into the middle of a deal with the devil, one she won’t escape, if he can’t convince her that dragon shifters aren’t her enemies. 
Lizzy Ford is the author of over twenty books written for young adult and adult paranormal romance readers, to include the internationally bestselling “Rhyn Trilogy,” “Witchling Series” and the “War of Gods” series. Considered a freak of nature by her peers for the ability to write and release a commercial quality novel in under a month, Lizzy has focused on keeping her readers happy by producing brilliant, gritty romances that remind people why true love is a trial worth enduring.
Lizzy’s books can be found on every major ereader library, to include: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, Kobo, Sony and Smashwords. She lives in southern Arizona with her husband, three dogs and a cat.

Chapter One

Chace glanced up from the glass of amber beer as his closest friend, Gunner, approached their usual table in the corner of the bar. Unlike Chace, who was a dragon shifter, Gunner was able to transform into a panther the size of a car. He had dark hair and almond-shaped, brown eyes, a muscular frame, a gait worthy of a cat and two pints in his hands. He sat and placed one glass down beside Chace’s untouched drink.
You ate your pizza, which means you can’t be too sick to drink your beer,” Gunner observed.
“There’s no excuse for wasting good pizza,” Chace replied. “Just not thirsty.”
“You really did it, didn’t you?” Gunner guessed.
Yeah,” Chace replied. “I talked to him.”
Chace’s eyes swept around the shifters’ bar, the only safe haven for a dying race of supernatural creatures that were being hunted and killed off. The tables, chairs and flooring were all mahogany, worn but polished and clean, the ceiling and lattice work on the pillars resembling those of an English pub rather than a typical biker bar. The walls were decorated with autographed classic rock posters, and shadowboxes with guitars, drumsticks and other rock curios perched above the row of plush booths along one wall.
The bar fed off his magic and was full this evening, though its patrons were tense. Their talk consisted of worried murmurs and the occasional cursing.
He’ll give me what I want,” Chace replied. “Doesn’t seem to be any strings attached. Just wants me and everything I own, which is basically just my bike at this point.”
Gunner sat down, frowning. “Why Chace?”
Because I’m tired of watching people I care about die around me. Chace debated what to tell his friend, who had been with him the longest of anyone still living.
You remember Steven?” he asked.
Yeah. He built your chopper, right?”
“Yep. I used to take it to him for maintenance every year for forty years, and he checked up with me monthly to make sure it was working well. He built it by hand,” Chace mused. “He loved that thing like it was his own.”
Used to. I can guess where this is going,” Gunner said. “He passed?”
Last week. I got an email from his son. He left me spare parts in his will.” Chace chuckled. “Think he liked the bike more than me, but he was …”
“… the last human friend who hadn’t died. I get it.”
They both fell quiet. Sometimes, Chace wondered where the years went, because they seemed to jumble up and fly by in a blink. And sometimes, he wasn’t certain he’d make it through the end of a week, especially when someone like Steven died and made him question everything in his life all over again. He’d outlived every friend he’d ever had, up until he chose only to associate with other shifters. Every time he let himself fall for a girl or made a friend, he convinced himself that this time, it would work out. The curse would lift, and he wouldn’t be left alone again.
It never works out that way.
A thousand years, Gun,” he murmured. “I’ve been alive a thousand years. Steven was eighty, and he left me spare parts, because he knew I wasn’t going to die anytime soon.”
Oh, hell. Here we go again,” Gunner joked. “It’s the nature of who we are, man.”
“It’s the nature of who you are,” Chace corrected him. “I was made a shifter. You all were born shifters.”
Doesn’t matter, does it? We’re all the same now.”
“Except you can die in a fight with another shifter. Me? No such luck,” Chace replied. “You expect to be immortal. I can’t figure out why I’m not dead.”
Gunner snorted in response.
You know what I was doing when I turned eighty?”
Sleeping your way across Finland?”
“Yes, but there’s more.” Chace grinned. “I was going to the funeral of my mother, who lived to almost a hundred. You ever see a Viking funeral?”
“On TV.”
“They’re spectacular.” Chace allowed himself to think of the memory he didn’t like recalling. He could almost smell the scent of burning wood as his mother’s body was set afloat on a fiery Viking ship into the sea. The evening had been cold and clear, the sunset smearing brilliant pinks, oranges and purples across one end of the sky while the other end was deep blue and scattered with blinking stars.
He’d gone incognito, disguised as a distant cousin, for no one but his mother knew his secret at that point that he was immortal. Even she didn’t know why the curse was placed on him. It was a secret he hadn’t told anyone. Ever. He’d been a stupid, hotheaded fool when he was a kid.
“I want to be human again. I want my heart back. Anyway.” He shook his head. “I went to see Mr. Nothing this morning, and he made me a smokin’ deal. He’ll lift the curse in exchange for everything that is mine.”
So … what is that exactly? Did you ask?”
Chace shrugged. “Don’t care. The moment before he makes me mortal, I’m going to move my cabin one last time and just live out the rest of my years in peace. Beside, I only have my magic and my bike.”
“When I met you, you were this hot-headed, cocky bastard.” Gunner leaned forward, his face taut with concern. “You mellowed out over the years a bunch. But this decision sounds like it was made by the young dragon shifter who didn’t stop to think before lighting things on fire.”
Chace said nothing. A small part of him agreed, but he’d been more disturbed by Steven’s death than he cared to let on. Long ago he tried to close off his emotions to the world. Maybe it was monthly chats and ritual trips to visit Steven that let the tiny man with a huge smile work his way under his skin. After a thousand years, Chace should be completely numb, able to rationalize death as a stage in the natural way of the world the way Gunner did.
But he couldn’t, and he’d tried for years to philosophize his way into accepting death.
“I made the deal anyway,” Chace said. “He’s going to send a messenger tonight or tomorrow with one of his cards to let me know where to meet him for the final spell.”
“You know we don’t know anything about Mr. Nothing.”
“We know he’s older than even me, and that he’s got the magic to do this. The deal is straightforward. Worst case scenario, he kills me.” Chace shrugged.
I don’t like it.”
I don’t either. What other choice do I have of ever having this curse lifted? The woman who placed it on me – she’s been dead for over nine hundred years, Gunner!”
I know.”
“At some point, I’ll outlive you and the rest of the guys we run with. No, Gunner, I’m done. What she did to me can’t be undone any other way, and I’ve looked for a way to end the curse my entire life,” Chace said firmly. “I turned a thousand last week, and that’s when Steven died. It’s a sign.”
I hear ya.” Gunner’s voice was soft. “I don’t blame you, Chace. I just don’t trust Mr. Nothing.”
Mr. Nothing had gotten his nickname because no one could find out anything about him. No one knew where he lived and yet, he was easy to find whenever Chace had wanted to talk to the elusive creature that had been around since he was made a shifter.
Easy to find. Not easy to get answers out of. Chace had nearly gone mad the first few years of the curse trying to get the shadowy figure that only appeared at night to tell him something about his newfound immortality or his magic.
To this day, Chace had no idea what Mr. Nothing was, aside from a shifter of some kind with great power. He suspected Mr. Nothing was a dragon, though he’d long since given up trying to get answers out of someone who didn’t seem interested in anyone else.
Gunner waved to someone who had just entered, and Chace looked up to see the third member of their four-man gang. A phoenix shifter with a like-minded affinity for fire, Luke was blond like Chace, though his hair was short and his eyes dark, whereas Chace had blue eyes and kept his dark blond hair long in the way of his Viking people.
Don’t tell the others,” Chace said to Gunner. “I’ll let them know when everything is final.”
“All right.” Gunner didn’t appear to be happy about keeping secrets from the other two members of their tight-knit crew.
“Thanks. I’m gonna go get changed.”
I’ll put on some tunes. I think the shifters need something to cheer them up.”
Chace rose. He agreed silently and took in the faces of those around him once more, trying to distance himself from his concern. As much as he tried to deny it, he knew they were his people, even if he’d started off as a human. They had nowhere else to go, and no one else to turn to. The shifter creed was simple: to live their lives quietly without harming anyone or bringing attention to their society. It was how they remained hidden, a secret subculture that the humans had no need to know about.
Yet someone had found out, and the shifter ranks had thinned considerably the past twenty years. Once numbering in the thousands, the several dozen men and women seeking refuge in his bar were all that remained.
Chace left out of the back door of the bar and stepped into the warm air of early evening. The distant drone of traffic on I-10 reaching him across the flat desert terrain.
He didn’t want to feel worry or fear for the shifter family that adopted him when he had no one else, but he did. On one hand, the timing for him to decide to strike a deal with Mr. Nothing felt wrong, because he wouldn’t be around to help the others, if they needed it. He’d airlifted a few other shifters out of their homes when they’d been too afraid to leave. Their fear struck him hard, even when he tried to remain numb to the world.
You care too much to abandon them, Gunner had told him once.
And he did. The brash, selfish, cocky young man who was cursed for being a fool had turned thoughtful over the years, compassionate and observant of his world. Even if he tried to keep everyone at a distance.
Chace focused on the small cabin that materialized out of thin air. Another creation of his magic, he had managed to take his home with him wherever he went over the years, the only real solace he had. It was the cabin where he’d been born and where his mother had lived up until her death. Only after returning to it after her funeral had he realized that his magic would let him take it with him.
There were days when he thought it was more alive than not with a mind of its own. Its magic and his were intertwined but not the same. It reacted to his emotions and commands, and yet, it had its own life as well, which had baffled him for many years until he finally just accepted it.
He walked in. The cabin had looked the same for many years. It had a simple floor plan consisting of a great room where everything was and a small bathroom he’d added a hundred years before. The great room held a king-sized bed with a wood stove, living room area, small office space and a storage corner where he kept what precious items he had.
Chace changed out of the dusty clothes he’d worn on his daily ride and into a fresh t-shirt and jeans, though he replaced his motorcycle jacket in case he had the urge for a midnight ride, like he did sometimes. Crossing to the storage corner, he paused.
Would you stop rearranging my boxes?” he growled at the cabin.
It didn’t reply. It never did, but the boxes returned to the order where he preferred them of their own accord. The tiny disturbance reminded him of how independent the magic of his cabin was, when it chose to be. It was like his magic, which obeyed him most of the time and then sometimes, responded too readily to his emotions and forced him to shift when he otherwise wouldn’t.
It’s like living with a passive-aggressive woman,” he said, amused. “You listening?”
The boxes suddenly flew off their shelves and tumbled to the floor at his feet.
A thousand years old and less mature than me,” he teased it. “Clean that up, please.”
He turned away, knowing the magic would obey, but probably not until after he left. He didn’t understand why his cabin was possessed or the link between it and his own independent magic.
After a thousand years, he no longer cared. In a few days, none of it would matter anyway.
He left the cabin, gaze going to the sky once more. A familiar yearning filled him, the call of the heavens clear in his thoughts. He found peace in the sky and in flying around.
Deciding he had time for a quick flight, he peeled off his clothing and tossed them on the porch. The transformation from human to dragon was brutal on his body – and irreparable on the clothing.
Pain roared through him, hot enough to rob him of breath. His flesh tore and his muscles were ripped from the bones. His bones then snapped and changed, forming the skeleton of his new shape, before sewing themselves back together. Tissue, muscle and skin adjusted and rearranged atop the new skeleton.
The first time he shifted, he thought he was dying. A thousand years later, he could control the pain with ease, even if he hated the bursts of agony and the twisting of his bones, skin, and insides that occurred when he changed shapes.
The process lasted mere seconds, and he unfolded his long wings on either side of his body. The translucent wings glittered dark teal in the moonlight, the same color as his thick scales and the fur edging them.
His senses were far more sensitive in his dragon form, and he breathed deeply and sneezed fire. The stream of yellow barely missed the bar. The scents from within were overpowering, and he shook his head then leapt effortlessly towards the sky. His wings caught him easily and propelled him upward.
He imagined the distance between him and the stars growing shorter as he soared upward, and he beat his wings hard, wondering if tonight was the night he got close enough to capture one.
Amused by his thoughts, he dipped his wings, caught an air current, and began playing, alternately floating in place and weaving in and out of the current, always intrigued by the challenge of how it tugged or pushed at his wings. He dove, wheeled and slammed on the brakes in midair, plummeting towards the earth only to unfurl the long wings and catch himself a couple feet from the ground.
Chace loved the sensation of the air ruffling his fur and tickling him, the cool air of evening filling his lungs. He loved the freedom of being a dragon most, the ability to take to the heavens whenever he felt the urge. He found peace in the skies, looking down at the miniaturized buildings, vehicles and cars. It gave him perspective, reminded him that his biggest concerns always looked tiny from far above.
Content with his short flight, he circled the bar lazily, slowly descending from the sky. The choice he’d made and the deal he’d bartered for with Mr. Nothing was done. The mysterious Mr. Nothing gave him time to think it over once last time, but Chace already knew his decision.
He was tired of seeing everyone he cared about die. He wanted to be human again, and nothing anyone said was going to convince him otherwise.


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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Seasons in the Sun (The Night Songs Collection .5) by Kristen Strassel Review, Excerpt and Giveaway ~Kami


Seasons in the Sun (The Night Songs Collection .5)


14-year-old Callie, short for Calliope, immediately falls for 17-year-old Tristan. Callie is a sheltered good girl living on Martha’s Vineyard and Tristan is a hurricane of sexy California boy trouble. He is a rich self-destructive, heavy drinker, who likes to party hard and Callie is sweet, naive and pure. I was worried about Callie a lot. While reading it, I was wondering how far she was going to fall and if he was going to use her and set her aside. There is an unexpected twist at the end that I didn't see coming at all. I thought that was interesting. This was a pretty good little young adult summer romance. I am interested to read the continuation of this story. 4 stars.

Summer has finally arrived, along with a boy who will forever change the life of fourteen-year-old Callie. After growing up hearing stories about Tristan Trevosier and his famous family, Callie finally meets him when he spends the summer on Martha's Vineyard. Seventeen-year-old Tristan is a hurricane of destruction and rebellion, and he quickly blows a hole right into Callie's sheltered life. Callie sees a side of Tristan that he doesn't show anyone else. She's determined to make everyone see what she sees in him.

Callie defies her parents by leaving the island with Tristan. But when his ugly habits rear their head, Callie realizes maybe she's the one who's wrong about him. He's beyond her help. But it's too late for her to walk away. This summer, she learns that love can be stronger than reason.
Kristen shares a birthday with Steven Tyler and Diana Ross. She spends each day striving to be half as fabulous as they are. She's worn many hats, none as flattering as her cowboy hat: banker, retail manager, fledgling web designer, world's worst cocktail waitress, panty slinger, now makeup artist and author. Kristen is represented by Pam van Hylckama Vlieg of Foreword Literary.
         Twitter @kristenstrassel

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A day to myself. I wasn’t scheduled for work, but Keisha was. For the first time in a long time, I was alone in an empty house.
What do I do with myself? Even on days off, we were up early to tend to the animals. We kept chickens and a goat too, for eggs and dairy for The Magnolia. By midmorning, I’d run out of ways to entertain myself. I decided to grab my book and sunbathe in the yard. I would have rathered go to the beach, but it was just too much effort to bring all the usual equipment down there alone.
“Hey,” The unexpected interruption sent me inches off of my seat. Tristan had made his way in to our yard without me noticing. He laughed when I jumped. I settled myself, heart pounding, as usual, and looked up at him without saying a word to see what the reason was for his visit.
“What are you doing?” He continued.
I looked down at the book which was now laying open on my stomach and back at him. “Reading.” I said slowly, since it was totally obvious what I was doing before he scared the crap out of me.
“Day off?”
Was he going to ask me any questions that he didn’t already know the answers to? “I hope so, or else I’m in big trouble. You?”
“Yup.” He pulled up a chair beside my lounge chair, flipped it backwards, and straddled it. No invitation needed. “Aren’t you bored?”
“No, not really.” Truth be told, I was dying of boredom. I wasn’t used to being by myself. I hated it. So why didn’t I admit it? Just for once, I wanted to have the upper hand with him.
“I think we should get out of here.”
“And go where?
“It’s my turn to teach you something.” He grinned. My heart clunked in my chest.
“What?” I tried to keep my composure.
“Surfing. You can’t be a real island girl unless you know how to surf.”
“Okay.” It did sound fun, I admit it. Actually surfing sounded pretty bad ass and I was excited to try it. But a part of me was disappointed that he just meant surfing.
I kept my voice steady. “What do I need to bring?”
“Just you…and a towel, I guess. Unless you have a board, which I doubt.”
“Nope. Do you have an extra?”
“No. We can share.”
How was that going to work? I folded my towel and shoved it into my bag. I went back in the house for my sandals and keys. After I got into Tristan’s jeep, I realized I probably should have left a note saying where I was going. Chances of anyone getting home before me were pretty slim. I almost went back, but I didn’t want him to think I was more of a little kid than he already thought.
“So you’re really going to try this?” Tristan asked as he pulled on to the main road, his GPS leading the way.
“Why would I be going if I wasn’t going to try it?”
“I don’t know, I didn’t know if you’d wuss out.”
“How hard can it be?”
He laughed. “I like you. You march to the beat of your own drummer.”
“Are you calling me a freak?” I tried to laugh it off, but I was really a little worried.
“No, Callie. It was a compliment. You’re not afraid to do your own thing.” He paused while he waited for traffic to clear for a left turn. “Why, do people say you’re a freak?”
I swallowed, feeling a bit self conscious, and twisted my fingers in my lap. “Well, kind of—I mean, I’m home schooled, and my mom hates anything normal.”
“Taryn and I are homeschooled, sort of. We have tutors on set. Normal is over rated.”
I relaxed when he said that. “What’s that like, being on a movie set?”
“Honestly, it’s kind of boring. You wind up spending most of your day in a trailer in the middle of nowhere. Then if you go to set, they do the same thing over and over again. You have to be quiet and still. It goes on forever.”
“Oh. I thought it would be so exciting.”
“It’s cool to go to some of the locations. If my dad has a day off, he’ll take us around so we can check things out, but other than that, it’s pretty dull.”
We pulled up to the parking attendant and Tristan paid for parking. I felt a little guilty that I didn’t bring any money to chip in, but then I thought back to the other day when he wouldn’t take his tips.
Once we got out of the car, Tristan pulled his surfboard from the back of the jeep. It seemed more formidable than I expected. It was longer than I was tall and it had some weight to it. I started to doubt how well I was going to do at this, but after being challenged not to be a wuss, I couldn’t possibly back out.
The beach was surprisingly quiet for such a beautiful afternoon. Visitors dotted the sand only in the distance. Thankfully, my inevitable eating of ocean water wouldn’t be witnessed by a crowd.
Tristan stopped where the sand was still powdery. The tide never came up this high. He dropped the board in front of him and looked at me. “You ready?”
“I’m not going to get any more ready.” What had I gotten myself into?
“All right, stand on the board.”
“Here?” I was so confused.
He looked around like he was lost. “This is a beach, right?”
“Yeah, but the water is over there,” I said, pointing at the ocean.
“You’re not ready for water yet. Trust me.”
I rolled my eyes and stood on the board, feeling stupid. It rocked back and forth under my feet and I had to steady myself to keep from falling over. Great. I couldn’t even surf on sand.
“See why I started you here? Not so easy, right? What you want to do is position your feet sideways, use your back foot for balance…okay, use your arms to balance the top of your body…”
I swayed back and forth on the board and Tristan grabbed me by the waist to steady me. “Move your feet like mine are.” He stood with his feet spread apart as he instructed me. I mimicked his stance. It was hard to concentrate on anything but the feel of his hands on my stomach. “Use your arms. Don’t be shy. No one is watching you.”
Determined, I looked up from his feet and steadied myself with my arms. Once Tristan was satisfied I wasn’t going to take a header off the board, he let go of my waist. I was almost tempted to lose my balance again. I could still feel the heat from his hands on my skin.
“So that’s your main stance. Let’s go to the water.”
“That’s it? You expect me to be able to surf now?”
“For that. Follow me.”
He picked up the board and headed to the water. It didn’t make sense for me not to follow. Tristan walked straight in to the surf and stopped when he got hip deep. The water temperature could still be described as shocking, and I did my best not to cry out as I joined him.
“I’m going to hold the board, and I want you to lay on it, on your stomach.” It was a bit of a struggle to get on the board, as the water was much deeper for me. He moved in a few steps to accommodate my shortness. “Now paddle.”
“Like a dog?”
“Like a surfer. Paddling is how you get out to the waves.”
I practiced the motion, with my head up, as he instructed. He was still holding onto the board, in case I got washed out to sea I guess. It felt weird not to go anywhere.
“Okay, now try to stand up.”
“Are you kidding me?” How was I ever going to do that?
“No. You surf standing up.”
I braced myself, thinking of the best and most graceful way to get into a standing position. I placed my hands under my shoulders and my knees under my hips.
If surfing on sand was hard, doing it in actual water was nearly impossible. I toppled off the board in an uncoordinated heap right on top of Tristan. I knocked us both under water. He was laughing as he came up, shaking the water from his hair. He pulled me up above the waves and close to him as I caught my breath.
“You look so exotic,” Tristan still had his hands on my arms, and his face was closer to mine than it had ever been.
I sighed, looking down at the water.
“Look at me, Callie.” He paused until my eyes met his. “I keep trying to pay you a compliment, and you keep taking it the wrong way. Why does it bother you so much to not be like everyone else?? They’re boring. You’re not boring.”
I didn’t have an answer for him. I don’t know how long we stood there, eyes locked, with the waves gently crashing against us.
He continued since I couldn’t. “And you don’t mind getting your hair wet.” He pulled me back down into the surf.
Coming up for air, I pushed my wet hair out of my face. “It’s a lost cause, anyway.”
“There you go again. Stop it. Guys hate that. Or at least I hate it when a girl is constantly down on herself.” Again he was staring at me.
“Your board is floating away.” It was a stupid thing to say at that moment, but I wanted to change the subject away from me, and if he didn’t get the board soon, it would never be seen again.
“Oh.” Tristan dove in the waves and swam after the board. I watched his shoulders, slick and shiny with salt water, work against the tide.
“I think we should head back,” he announced when he returned from the board. I didn’t want to go but I knew he was right.
We didn’t say much as we headed back. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the afternoon. Making a fool out of myself was frustrating. I couldn’t even stand up on the board. Tristan was just maddening. I could never quite get anything right when he was around.
I looked over at him, singing softly along with the radio as he drove. “I had fun,” the words sounded thin cutting through the awkward silence. We were almost home.
“I did, too.” Tristan answered in stride. “We’ll have to do another lesson soon.”
“I’m not a lost cause when it comes to surfing?” I asked and he glared at me. “Sorry.”
“It’s not easy. It takes a couple of times to get the hang of it.”
“Good. I don’t want to feel like a—” He gave me that look again as he pulled into his aunt’s driveway. “Never mind.”
“Never mind is right.” He winked at me. “See you tomorrow?”
“Bright and early.”
Again we looked at each other for too long, doing nothing. Without saying anything else, I opened the door and got out. I looked back as I reached the path that lead me home. Tristan was sitting in the driver’s seat, watching me go.

“Meet me in my aunt’s driveway tonight,” Tristan whispered into my ear just before we left work for the day. His warm breath tickled my skin.
“Later on. Like midnight.” He raised his eyebrows at the suggestion.
I stared at him open mouthed, not sure I understood what he said. “How is that going to work?”
“You’re a smart girl, you’ll figure it out.” Tristan squeezed my hand before he walked away.
I had a hard time concentrating on my routine for the rest of the afternoon and evening. How was I going to pull this off? Was I going to be able to sneak out when I shared a room with someone? I toyed with the idea of telling Keisha about Tristan’s proposal, but I decided against it.
Since I was useless anyway, I went to bed early. Or so everyone thought. I laid awake, watching the clock. It was so hard not to drift off to sleep. I couldn’t set my alarm, I’d wake Keisha. At 11:30, when I was satisfied Keisha was down for the count, I quietly slipped out of bed, washed the sleep from my face, got dressed, and began my journey.
Every floorboard creaked as I crossed the living room. At first I took slow deliberate steps, but I felt like that only amplified the noise, so I changed my pace to a quick tip toe. The kitchen door caught in the jam, swollen with humidity. I pulled as hard as I could to free it, jerking back with its force when it opened. I had to close it just as hard. In my nervousness, the forgotten screen door slammed door behind me on the porch. I squeezed my eyes shut, knowing I must be caught for sure. I was relieved to find that my actions seemed to have gone unnoticed. I tip toed gingerly down the stairs of the deck and sprinted towards Tristan’s house. I slowed up my pace when the driveway came into sight. Running the whole way would have been nothing short of pathetic.
Tristan sat on the rear bumper of his jeep, throwing his keys up in the air and catching them. I don’t think he heard me approach. I sat down next to him and he jumped. Finally, I caught him off guard. I laughed as he fumbled on the dark ground for his keys.
“You made it. I wasn’t sure if you’d do it or not.”
“You thought I’d chicken out?” He wasn’t the only one.
“You were wrong.” My eyes were adjusting to the light, and I met his in challenge. All this defiance made me brave.
“Let’s go for a walk,” he suggested.
“Where to?”
“I don’t know. You’re the one who lives here.”
“Well I usually don’t wander around in the middle of the night. But I guess we can go down by the beach.”
He took my hand and we set down the rocky road that led to the ocean without saying much of anything until we reached the sand. The only sound was the waves lapping against the shore. And my heart thundering in my chest.
“You can see so many of the stars out here.” Tristan declared, looking skyward in appreciation.
“How is that different than usual?”
“The city lights are too bright, they don’t stand out as much. It’s just so peaceful to look up at them all. See, there’s the Big Dipper.” He pointed skyward.
I nodded. “Can you see Orion’s Belt in it?”
“I can.”
Tristan sat down on one of the rocks that formed a breakwater. I climbed up next to him. I felt small next to him, with my legs dangling off the giant rock and the sky so huge above us.
“I’m having a really good time here this summer.” His arm made its way loosely around my waist.
“I am, too.”
“I’m going to hate going back to California.”
My heart twinged in my chest. I knew all along the day was coming soon when the twins would leave the island and normal life would resume, but not thinking about it made it less real.
“Maybe you don’t have to go,” I offered, softly.
He pulled me in closer to him and sighed. “I do. What am I going to do here?”
He was right, but I hated it. I hated myself for thinking I’d be enough to make him stay. It wasn’t like he was even my boyfriend. “You’re right.”
“What do you want to do, Callie?”
“What do you mean?” I pulled away from him nervously, heart pounding even harder.
“About everything. What do you want your life to be like?”
I knotted my fingers in my lap as I thought about his question. “I don’t know. This is my life.”
“There’s a whole world out there, you know. But it is nice here. It’s simple. No drama. “
I tried not to feel simple myself. “What’s California like?”
Tristan leaned back on his hands and looked up at the sky. “Right now it’s a hot mess. My parents hate each other. They’re trying to work things out, but I know they’re going to split. That’s why we got shipped here.”
“I’m sorry.”
“Don’t be. Honestly, it’s probably better. They’re always fighting, and using me and Taryn to get back at each other.”
“That’s awful.”
“Whatever. The peace and quiet is nice.” He pulled me back in. “And I like hanging out with you. It’s nice to hang out with a girl who doesn’t want anything from me.”
“What do you mean?” I wasn’t offended, just genuinely confused.
“I’m sick of all these chicks, sorry, girls, who just want me to buy them things, or want to be with me because of who my parents are. But you aren’t like that.”
“No.” Who knew I was getting it right?
“It’s a nice change.”
“So what do you want to do?” I asked.
“About what?” His eyes burned into mine, only visible by the light of the moon reflecting off the ocean.
My breath caught in my throat. “Same thing. Everything.”
He sighed. “Honestly, I don’t have a clue. I could probably act, but I don’t want to do it just because my father does it. I’d love to have a band.”
“Why don’t you?”
“I don’t know. I never thought I was any good, but being here, my head’s been so clear. I’ve even worked on some songs.” He said the last part quietly. The way he said it, I was pretty sure I was the only one who knew anything about this.
“I’d love to hear them sometime.”
“I don’t know. They’re probably crap.”
“You always tell me not to be down on myself, and here you are, doing the same thing.”
“I know,” He leaned in, so his face was very close to mine. “I know what I want to do right now.”
“What?” I could barely speak.
“Kiss you.” He leaned in closer, his lips grazing mine.
I panicked and pulled away.
“What’s the matter?” Tristan seemed alarmed.
“I don’t know what to do.”
I couldn’t see it, but I could feel his smile. He ran his thumb softly along my jaw line, his fingers snaking into my hair. “You’re doing just fine. Just relax.”
That seemed impossible. “Okay.”
His lips parted mine gently. I simply followed Tristan’s lead, mimicking his actions as I curled my fingers around his arms. He slowly nipped my upper and lower lip, almost teasing me, before unwinding his fingers from my hair, sliding his hands down to my waist, and pulling me up into his lap, against his chest. I could feel his heart thundering in unison with mine. I moved my hands up into his hair, pulling him close to me as he placed his lips over mine.
I don’t know how long we stayed there, locked together like that. One of us would pull away, just enough to breathe, and then be drawn right back in.
Finally, Tristan slid me down off of his lap. I could feel the chill immediately being separated from his body. If I looked at him at that moment, we’d be right back where we started, so I looked up at the stars. They were even more beautiful than I ever remembered them being.
Everything was so right, with just us sitting out here, no noise but the lapping of the waves and the beating of my heart.
“I have to get you back,” Tristan’s voice was husky.
The sky had brightened. I prayed it was just lights from the town and not sunrise. No one in my house waited for the sun to be up to get out of bed. I needed to be safely back in bed before anyone’s feet hit the floorboards for the day.
We started to make our way through the sand, and back to the rocky road that led back to Beach Plum Lane. We held hands, not leaving enough space for one another.
I wasn’t ready to part ways when we reached my porch. I don’t think Tristan was either, he took my hands and pulled me close to him.
“Thank you,” I whispered.
“For what?”
He shook his head against my forehead. “No,” he said, just as softly. “Thank you. For everything, Callie. I mean it.”
I looked up at him, puzzled, but didn’t say anything. I wasn’t sure what to say.
“Will you be my date at the President’s party?”
“Of course.”
He squeezed my hands and leaned in for one last kiss. I could feel his smile against my lips. “Sweet dreams, Callie.”

CH 1
My bike skidded into the alley beside the café. I knew I was late. I leaned it up against the building, pulled my damp braid away from my neck, and fanned out my shirt.
“Where have you been, Callie? Your shift starts at nine. No excuses. I’m not going to treat you differently than anyone else on the staff. It sets a bad example.” My mom was rolling out dough on the table. There was flour on her apron and in her hair. It had obviously been a busy morning. She barely looked up from her work as she acknowledged me.
I looked at the clock on the wall. 9:15. “Sorry.” I mumbled as I grabbed my apron. “Where do you want me today?”
Mom sighed, pausing for a minute to think strategy. “Barista station.”
Not so bad. I figured she’d give me something I hated to punish me for being late. My mom ran a tight ship. The Magnolia Café was her dream in action and she wasn’t about to let anyone, including me, screw it up. But I loved making the coffee. It was what we were known for. I liked helping the island wake up. The regular faces became more recognizable each day.
This was my first summer as an official employee. I’d worked behind the scenes for years. I was thrilled to be old enough to be a real part of the team. Even if it I was working for my mom, I wanted to make a good impression.
“Guess what? I met the twins.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Caroline’s niece and nephew. Taryn and Tristan.” We rented the guest house on Caroline’s sprawling property. I’d been hearing stories about Caroline’s family my whole life. Her sister was a model, married to a movie star. Did it get any more glamorous than that?
“Oh.” Recall was written all over her face. My mother found Caroline’s family less impressive than I did. We didn’t even have a TV in the house, that’s how much she cared about Hollywood. “Were their parents there as well?”
“I don’t know. I just saw the twins.”
“Did Caroline say anything about the party?”
“What party?” I had no idea what my mother was talking about.
“Never mind. She wouldn’t say anything to you, anyway.” I felt like a little kid for the second time this morning.
I headed out front to relieve Olga, the early morning barista. Keisha, my cousin, was tidying up behind the counter and restocking the muffins and bagels. She came every summer from Jamaica to work with us at the Magnolia.
“What’s going on, girl? You’re late.” She hip checked me playfully as I walked passed her to the coffee station.
“So I hear. Good morning to you, too.”
“Ha! You were fired, you know.”
“Yeah I’m sure.” Where else was my mother going to find such willing, well trained, underpaid labor?
“You missed the hot Australian dude. That man can eat his croissant in my bed any day….”
I giggled and swatted at Keisha. “Oh! That reminds me. I met the twins.”
“What twins?”
Apparently I was the only person who was excited about this. I was starting to feel a little foolish telling everyone so enthusiastically about my meeting. “Caroline’s niece and nephew. Tristan and Taryn. From California.”
“Oooooh, the movie star kids.” Now I had Keisha’s attention.
“Tell me all about them.”
“I don’t know, it was quick. We didn’t say much. But Tristan is really good looking.”
“Oh yeah? How old are they?”
“Gosh, I don’t know…Caroline said they weren’t much older than me, but they looked like they were about twenty five.”
“All those famous people have botox and nose jobs and boob jobs…did the girl have a boob job?”
“I didn’t know I was supposed to check out her chest for you.”
“God, I’d love a boob job. Instead I got a big ass. So how good looking are you talking?”
I blushed a little bit as I started making a nonfat caramel latte for Janis, one of the regulars. “Really good looking. Like I didn’t know it was possible to be that good looking.”
I could still feel where Tristan squeezed my hand while he looked me right in the eyes, making my knees knock. I could still smell the spiciness of his cologne.
“He must be gay then.” I was a little mortified by that. I shot a quick look at Janis, who was smirking at our conversation. I added her extra whipped cream before she even asked.
“Anyone from California who’s that good looking has got to be gay, girl. Get used to it.”
“How many people have you met from California?”
“None. But I know. I read Perez Hilton.”
Who? “Is he on NPR? Because that’s all I ever get to listen to and you know it.” My mom ran a tight ship at home too. We didn’t have cable and I got homeschooled. My pop culture knowledge was embarrassingly nonexistent.
“Oh yeah, I forgot I was back in the stone ages for a minute.” Keisha rolled her eyes. “I’m just saying, that’s how it is.”
It was just easier to agree with her. “Whatever. He didn’t seem gay. Not like I’d know if he was anyway. But I don’t think so.”
“I guess between the two of us, we’ll find out, right?”