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Thursday, 10 December 2015

☀ The Touched: The Descendants [1] - Jennifer Weiser

Thank you for joining us on the Virtual Book Tour for The Touched, a Young Adult Paranormal Dystopian novel by (, Limitless Publishing LLC, 418 pages).

This is the first book in the The Descendants series.

PREVIEW: Check out the book's synopsis and excerpt below, as well as our Q&A with author Jennifer Weiser. Read the first four chapters with Amazon Look Inside. The Touched is FREE on Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Owner's Lending Library.

Jennifer Weiser will be awarding a signed copy of The Touched + a $10 Amazon Gift Card, and 3x eBook copies of The Touched to randomly drawn winners via Rafflecopter during the tour.   Please do take part: comment on our post and follow the tour where you will be able to read other excerpts (☀), interviews (ℚ), reviews (✍) and guest blog posts (✉).


Synopsis | Teaser | Author Q&A | About the Author | Giveaway & Tour Stops

Synopsis

The first sixteen years of Arabella Penthallow’s life have been a lie…

In a world where deception is the key to survival, Ara has kept up the charade of being a perfect Legion Leader’s daughter. But a darkness stirs, and she discovers she is Touched, a mortal gifted by the Gods. The Touched are as rare as they are feared, and Ara is forced to leave Union City for neighboring Midnight City to protect herself and those she loves, leaving Tove Thorn, the boy who has always known her heart, behind.

Carter Decker has vowed to burn Union City to the ground…

Midnight City’s cocky, infamous bad boy always gets what he wants, and he wants Union City to pay for burning his mother alive because she was Touched. When Carter meets Ara, she is everything he’s been taught to hate. Then he learns she is Touched—just like him—he isn’t sure who he hates more…the Touched girl whose father killed his mother, or himself for being tempted by someone he’s sworn to kill.

They are told they’re fated to be soul mates…and they each wish the other never existed.

When Midnight City is attacked by Union City, Carter and Arabella will do the unthinkable…even if it means falling for the enemy. The truth lies in Arabella’s home nation, and Tove is waiting. Soul mates or not, he has an advantage Carter doesn’t, fated souls be damned.

War is coming…and Ara is the prize.

Teaser: Excerpt

Prologue

Ten Years Ago

Carter

      The weather is all wrong for a day like today.
      The thought keeps repeating, and I cling to it like a mantra— anything to avoid the scene unfolding around me. An innocent day that turned beyond our control. She was at the wrong place at the wrong time— and now I was going to watch her burn for it.
      Looking from the bright blue sky, littered with clouds so white they sting my eyes as the sun’s rays break through, bathing the waiting crowd with warmth and comfort, I feel nothing but rage.
      Rage for the nation that was going to kill an innocent woman. Rage for a nation that still believes it can play God. Rage at the families that stand tall and proud on their dais, their faces emotionless as they look out on the eager crowd below them.
      They feel nothing.
      And I feel hate for each and every one of them.
      Worst of them all is the pretty, snow-pale skinned and bright-green eyed girl who stands with her hands clasped in front of her, her black curls lifting in the light breeze that blows through the square. Her gaze roams over the populated center before stopping and remaining on me. Next to her, a skinny boy with tousled hair pokes her in the side, but even with her annoyance radiating in her features, her eyes never waver from mine.
      Grinding my teeth together, I try to look away, but something in those intense green eyes keeps me from allowing my gaze to travel much farther than a person or two over before returning back to her. Next to me, Rob shifts his feet, his father standing rigidly next to him, his large hands grasping Rob’s shoulders as his knuckles begin to turn white. It’s a wonder Rob doesn’t flinch under the grip.
      Father stands behind me, his hand every now and then squeezing my own, a small reminder that he is still with me. Never leaving, even as the reality of losing my mother comes rushing back. The four of us stand toward the back of the gathered crowd. Not wanting to draw too much attention, but not wanting to leave either.
      How had everything gone so wrong so quickly? While traveling to the docking station, we only had minutes before our boarding time, and in those minutes— mere seconds— everything changed. Damn this region and its poor sector. Damn the boy whose leg was broken, bone jutting out of his torn and bleeding flesh. Damn this nation for not caring about the crumbling buildings and dirty slums that clung to the exterior of their own city. How could that boy have been so stupid? Playing pretend hero with a gun, yet having no formal training on how to properly handle a deadly weapon. It was his own fault for what he had done to himself. Mother had only been trying to help, but how could she have been so careless?
      Moving my eyes from Rob, they instantly return back to the girl. The boy who stands next to her whispers in her ear, while still jabbing his fingers into her side. Frowning, she shakes her head at him. As if she can feel me looking at her, her eyes snap from the ground in front of her and back to mine.
      There is no forgiveness for what Father is about to do. A small, weak voice, light as the breeze brushing my skin, sings inside my head. Reeling back, I collide with Father’s waist, before quickly looking around for the source of the voice. Laughter and cheerful banter drift down from those around us, but no girl stands near us.
      “Did you hear that?” I ask Rob quietly.
      He glances over at me from the platform, his eyes wide with fear. “Hear what?”
      “The girl?”
      Shaking his head, Rob’s shoulders slump forward. “What girl?”
      I shake my own head in response, my eyes instantly finding those of the girl across the square again. This time, she isn’t looking at me. Instead she looks up at the woman who has come to stand next to her. Their hands lock together, the woman slowly nodding to the girl before she looks away. It’s that second that I know my worst fears are about to come true. The crowd around us instantly lifts in excitement, their elation rising in their emotions that continue to coat my rage and hate in deeper shades of scarlet.
      Father’s hand finds mine, just as the woman with dark chestnut hair strewn about wildly is brought forward. Her hands are secured with black rope, her pale ivory silk dress stained in browning shades of red.
      “Burn her!” a man across the square yells. His voice is quickly replaced by hundreds that are demanding the same.
      My stomach tightens in sickening knots as she, my mother, is led to a wooden pyre, not far from the girl and her mother. Her hands are untied and are quickly placed into metal cuffs that are attached to the wood. Her ankles are next.
      I think I’m going to be sick, but I can’t look away. I can’t. I’m trapped staring at the horror unfolding in front of me.
      Stepping from the side of the girl, a man I hadn’t taken notice of until now walks slowly toward Mother, a grim expression on his face. Shaking his head, he doesn’t address the crowd that chants its death request. They’ll get their wish. This nation isn’t forgiving to the kind that is chained brutally to that wooden post. They fear what they don’t wish to understand. They punish because they are weak and cowardly. And as the rage reaches a new level, I vow silently to right the wrong they are making. I will make them pay for what they are about to do.
      The next moments will live with me until my last breath; I will never be able to replace the images of this day, of this time. Union City is taking everything away from me, and it will be my pleasure to make sure retribution is paid one day.
      A torch is lit a few feet from Mother, but her body never flinches. Instead, she stares out into the crowd, her head held high. No fear in her eyes, and though I know she won’t see us, I instinctively reach out toward her, only to have Father’s hand grab hold of mine.
      “No, Carter,” he warns. “We mustn’t be seen.”
      Of course not. If we are discovered, it won’t be only Mother they will burn. It will be us as well. We are powerless to save her, but we can save ourselves.
      We knew there were risks when we traveled into Union City, but Mother had a friend here she desperately wished to visit, and Father said he wouldn’t mind seeing what was left of the region that fought so hard against the Touched. A day trip instantly spoiled when fear and panic broke out.
      Swallowing against the hate that threatens to explode from my mouth, I nod in understanding, hating it, but understanding. Leader Penthallow of Union City accepts the torch from the Officer who lit it. Bowing his head as if this mere act repulses him, the square falls quiet. In that moment of blissful silence, the firelight is brought down to the hem of Mother’s dress, catching quickly and running up the silk.
      At first no sounds escape Mother’s lips, but quickly, as the heat and flames begin to lick up and around her body, her cries begin to echo off the pale grey buildings surrounding the square and shatter the beats of my heart.
      Pressing my lips together and turning from the gory blaze, the water behind my closed lids begins to leak out. Mother’s anguish bleeds into me, the suffocating smell of burning flesh filling my nostrils and making me gag. The recoiling of my stomach causes me to bend over and retch right on Rob’s shoes. The sobs choke me as my body shakes violently against the agony of hearing my mother being burned alive.
      Father’s hands fall across my back, lightly patting as my stomach coils once more. Shaking against his hands, I slowly bring myself back up, the back of my hand wiping across my mouth. Behind the pyre, my eyes lock with the girl’s. Her tears cascade down her cheeks, her own body sagging against the scene in front of her. And as Mother’s cries begin to fade, the breeze picks up the girl’s ebony curls, sweeping them across her face, her intense gaze searing the pain further. I can’t decide who I hate more. The nation that murdered my mother in fear, or the girl who stood captive and watched me with withered sympathy as her father lit my mother on fire.

The Touched
Available NOW!

UK: purchase from Amazon.co.uk US: purchase from Amazon.com purchase from Barnes & Noble find on Goodreads

About the Author

Jennifer Weiser is a young adult author who has always been a book nerd and a bit chocolate obsessed. Writing has always been a favorite escape, but quickly became a passion not long after the birth of her daughter.

When she isn’t combing the shelves of her local book stores or blogging about newest book obsessions, you can find her nestled in her nook creating worlds she hopes that one day will inspire her daughter, who not only has given her the courage to follow her dreams–but offers the inspirations that help color their worlds together.

Follow Jennifer Weiser:

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Giveaway and Tour Stops

Enter to win a signed copy of The Touched + a $10 Amazon Gift Card, or one of three eBook copies of The Touched.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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