Thursday, October 31, 2013

Portents Blitz, Excerpt & Giveaway!

Amanda Ryder V.I. 
Book 2
Shanyn Hosier

When all signs point to trouble, can Amanda steer clear of disaster?

Amanda Ryder's determined never to fail her coven again. Next time, she won't hesitate to pull the trigger to defend her friends. If only they'd trust her enough to let her set foot outside the Academy…

Frustrated and itching to prove herself, Amanda snags her first Academy mission: she and Toby Laboyteaux, fellow teen witch who "kinda sorta sees the future," must work together to track down a local swamp monster stirring up trouble in the sticks. But overturned suburban garbage cans and blurry tabloid pictures aren't the only problems—strained relationships with her new colleagues, a growing guilt-complex, and the waxing moon all add to Amanda's stress. Add to that the pressure of being hunted by a psychic psychopath, and Amanda's got plenty on her mind.

Meanwhile, Hamilton Nash swears Marian Dupree and her Academy of bumbling do-gooders have thwarted his plans for the last time. Convinced Amanda's the subject of his mother's recent prophecy and the key to his future success, he redoubles his efforts to obtain the mystery girl. But when Amanda proves too slippery a quarry, Nash sets his sights on the next best thing. When a valuable member of the Academy coven is kidnapped, Amanda and her friends are in a race against time. Is a tragic future destined to come to pass?


 "Run!" Grady shouted as he moved to intercept their followers.

Jeanine shoved Amanda through the door, then sprinted off, dragging her toward one of the three white Cherokees parked in a row in the dirt lot.

A gunshot rang out, and Amanda shrieked in terror. Kevin's firing range scolding came back to her now—here was a target shooting back at her, and it absolutely made all the difference in the world.

Jeanine yanked her down behind a car. Crouching, she peeked around the bumper while Amanda ducked her head down, peering through the gap below the undercarriage. The man and the woman walked toward them, guns drawn.

"Shit," Jeanine muttered.

In the next moment, Grady and Lorelei burst through the door of the pool hall, guns leveled at the pursuers.

"We don't want any more trouble," Grady announced calmly.

"Like hell we don't," Lorelei snarled.

Amanda pressed her back against the car she and Jeanine crouched behind, her patchwork heart pounding fit to burst. Jeanine pointed at the nearest Academy Cherokee several yards away,  and the two women began creeping toward it. They'd made it past two cars when more shots rang out, and the armed man skidded behind a blue Ford F150 parked between them and the Cherokee.
Lurching to a halt, the two women looked about, searching for an escape. Miraculously, he didn't seem to notice them. Yet.

Not far from them loomed a collection of large drums overflowing with garbage. Amanda grabbed Jeanine's forearm, then nodded toward the mess. Jeanine's brow wrinkled with a lack of confidence, and she shook her head slightly
Maybe Jeanine misunderstood her intent. Or perhaps object levitation wasn't her strong point. Amanda, on the other hand, had plenty of practice.  Amanda gave Jeanine's arm a reassuring squeeze, then extended her hand toward the drums. She half-closed her eyes to better focus her attention; imagining an ethereal connection between her and the inanimate object solidified her will. Then she swung her arm like an underarm pitch. Fly!

A garbage can obeyed her command, rushing through the air. The gunman spun around just as the drum crashed into him, pinning him against the truck. As he went down, aiming wildly, he pulled the trigger.  Amanda sucked in a breath, clutching at the fiery pain blossoming in her shoulder.  They rushed around the front of the truck toward the downed attacker. Amanda summoned the gun from his limp hand, then Jeanine grabbed his leg and gave him a zap for good measure. The man's body jerked, then lay still once more.

"One down," Jeanine called out.

"That makes you outnumbered, bitch," Lorelei shouted at the still-at-large attacker.
 Jeanine turned back to face Amanda, then gasped. "He hit you?!"

Already the pain was subsiding into a burning sensation. Amanda gingerly lifted her fingers to examine her shoulder—her shirt sleeve was ripped and a little bloody, but not punctured. "Nicked me, I think," she replied with a shake of her head.  Another shot rang out, followed by glass exploding, then a shriek. Heavy footsteps pounded toward them, then slid through gravel. Grady skidded around the truck, rolling back up into a defensive crouch. Amanda was damn impressed by the move and made a mental note to ask him to teach it to her.

He clamped his hand over Amanda's mouth, pressing her against the truck with his body.  "Don't scream. And don't move," he rasped in her ear, his breath laboring from exertion.

 She nodded. Despite this odd, rough treatment, she instantly felt safer with him around.  He would get them all out of this.

"I'll cover you," Grady added in a hoarse whisper as Jeanine nodded and fished her keys out of her pocket. Amanda tried to hand her the gun but Jeanine refused it, mouthing, There's one in the car.

Grady spared a glance at the unconscious man. "Keep an eye on him," he ordered.

Amanda trained the revolver—her least favorite firearm—onto the still motionless attacker with her good arm.  When Jeanine had the keys in her hand, Grady bid her good luck with a silent wink and a nod.

 He shouted, "Get her out of here," as Jeanine dashed off, his gun held steady and aimed at the building. As Grady watched her go, still pinning Amanda against the car, she finally realized the plan: Jeanine's a decoy?

Fearing the armed woman would open fire on any vehicle leaving the lot, Amanda hissed against Grady's palm, "Wait!"

Her protest was ignored. Silently opening the door, Jeanine slipped into the Cherokee,  slipping into the driver's seat while keeping as low as possible. The door shut behind her with a quiet click.

"Now, Jeanie," Grady roared. He released Amanda and edged forward past the car they'd hidden behind, firing off several shots.  An answering hail of bullets rang out as Jeanine peeled out of the parking lot in a shower of gravel and dust. As far as Amanda could see, nothing hit the Cherokee as it skidded onto the road and barreled away. Her skepticism forgotten in the frantic moment, she offered up a prayer to a heaven she wasn't sure existed for protection of her friend. Please, God, keep her safe!

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About the Author:

Born and raised in small-town, rural Indiana, I now live in metropolitan Phoenix, Arizona with an intimidatingly smart and devastatingly handsome husband and two hyperactively cute and talented sons who will one day be Earth's Overlords (never underestimate the power of Legos). I enjoy cooking, traveling, gardening, sewing, quilting, and embroidery but only when I'm in the right mood and seldom concurrently (I'm kind of streaky when it comes to hobbies). I adore reading and writing in the same way that I love breathing and eating, gaining a similar nourishment from each.



Twitter  @Taboo_Mistress


Amazon Author Page

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