Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Dylan's Quest by Blair Drake

Dylan's Quest
Finding Magic
Book Five
Blair Drake

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Magic Quest Books

Date of Publication: July 19, 2018


Number of pages: 225
Word Count: 78,750

Cover Artist: Jennifer Zemanek/Seedlings LLC

Tagline: What would you do to find your magic?

Book Description:

The most normal thing about Dylan’s morning was being called to the headmaster’s office. And that’s where normal forever changed for him. One minute he’s in the office, the next he’s on the roof, and moments later, he opens the doors to Gray Cliffs Academy to find he’s in a whole new world.

Troll, and pixies, and chameleman, oh my. In a dimension with real-world technology along with magic, Dylan must find his grimoire and get back to Gray Cliffs before the darkness invades both worlds.


Excerpt Book 5:

When Dylan opened the door, he thought maybe he was dropped off the roof onto his head and suffered a concussion. Nothing else, short of a dream (which he decided it wasn’t a dream when he pinched himself and it hurt like hell), could explain what he saw.
“Quantum physics is real,” he said aloud.
He stepped through the doorway and closed the doors firmly behind him, to keep the fog at bay. Turning around to what should be the foyer of the school, he saw a city. Was it a city? Could that be possible? And it felt familiar, only he was sure he never saw anything like it before now.
“Holy…” He didn’t finish his sentence because awe overtook him. He’d seen this place before. Not the whole place necessarily, but he’d seen that house. He looked to the left...and that house.
His father was an architect, and he had drawings and paintings of Victorian homes all around his office. But the homes were surreal, with blithely assembled gables, dormers, turrets, and finials. It was a surreal whimsy. His dad said he interpreted what he was taught about Stic, Eastlake, and Gothic Revival architecture. He always thought his dad reimagined and reinvented original architectural designs, but he drew real houses.
Dylan took a tentative step forward. What the hell happened? Where were the rest of the kids? And why wasn’t he terrified? Fog seeped through the seams of the door and clouded the vision before him. He could see this town was near the sea and thought maybe it was the other side of the island—or not.
He considered pinching himself again, because this had to be a dream. Only he looked down and saw the welt he gave himself moments ago. Not a smart idea. He’d roll with it. He stepped forward onto the sidewalk and was nearly run over by an egg-shaped man wearing what he’d call steampunk clothing: cream colored, high-waist Regency fall front trousers, a brown vest with a burgundy jacket with little round tassels hanging from the hem, a white cotton neck scarf with the same tassels, and tan and burgundy wingtip shoes.
The egg man walked on the tips of his toes while three cats, all tiger striped, walked with him. The three cats were on leashes. With his nose in the air, not paying attention, it was no wonder he nearly ran over Dylan.
Dylan started to say a sarcastic, “Excuse me,” but he was awestruck by what he saw in the street.
An elephant, wearing a hat and blanket the same colors of tan and burgundy as the round man, had a miniature version of the Taj Mahal strapped to his back. As the elephant walked past, Dylan could see two monkeys inside the Taj Mahal, playing chess.
Dylan shook his head. What happened on that roof? He looked around to see the streets were filled with other oddities: a woman who looked like a mermaid with legs, was riding a seahorse as if the air were water; a frog with wings; fish floating by in bubbles. And when he looked to the sky, he swore the crescent moon smiled at him, then winked.
He felt something hot in the pocket of his khaki school uniform pants and pulled out a pin. It glowed. It was warm, but not really hot, though it felt quite hot in his pocket, like it tried to get his attention.
“Hey,” he heard a muffled cry.
Looking around, he didn’t see anyone looking at him.
“Down here, stupid,” the whiny voice said again.
Just as he leaned over to see where the voice was coming from, a bee the size of a small dog swooped down at him. As it flew away, he saw it wasn’t just a bee. The insect had the upper body of a woman, with the butt and wings of a bee.
“Watch out, that one can kill you,” the voice said.
Dylan looked at the grass next to the sidewalk. A man’s pocket watch was wedged between the grass and the white picket fence. He bent down and picked up the watch.
“Whoa,” he said when he almost dropped it, after looking into the clear glass cover.
Instead of seeing the face of a watch through the glass, Dylan saw a man’s face, and his bare arms and legs. It looked as if he’d been stuffed into the pocket watch.
“Hey, be careful,” the naked old man inside the pocket watch said.
“Sorry,” Dylan responded without thinking.
“Press the top and open this thing. I’m getting cramps.”
Dylan didn’t immediately open the pocket watch. He turned it over in his hand to look at the back. It looked like tarnished sterling silver, and it was old. But where were the watch parts? He’d have to open the glass watch face to see what was inside. How did that old man fit inside? And the man inside was talking to him. How had he heard such a small man, who was closed inside a watch?
Dylan could see the man’s face peaking from between his knees, which looked smashed against the glass. His legs were bent, and his knees were on either side of his body, with his ankles crossed. His toes were large and gross. He only had three fingers and a thumb on each hand. Dylan could see a cog embedded in the left side of his chest. He had a long, narrow face with a prominent chin, a wide nose, smallish eyes that were hard to see behind his goggle-like glasses, and no hair.
“You gonna stare all day, or are you gonna let me out?” he said, then yelled, “Let me out!”
Dylan’s fingers moved to the top of the watch and popped the cover open. It felt as if his fingers were moving of their own freewill, even though he tried to keep them from letting the little old man out. Something told him this old guy was trouble. T. R. O. U. B. L. E.
The man tumbled out and dropped to the grass. “Umph.”
Dylan blinked and when he opened his eyes, the old man was no longer small enough to fit into the watch. Dylan covered his eyes. “Dude, you’re naked. Your junk is hanging out for everyone to see.”
When he opened his eyes, the old guy had his hands over his crotch. “Sorry, I’m getting old. Things don’t always go the way I plan them.”
The old man did something Dylan didn’t see, and suddenly he was dressed in the same manner as the round man with the cats.
“Who are you? And where am I?” Dylan asked, now that he could comfortably look at the man.
“I’m Henry Gidiro, but my friends call me Hank.” He swept his hand across and in front of him, bowing deeply from his waist. When he stood again, he said, “And you’re the young and stupid Dylan Streetman.”
Dylan’s chin dropped, his mouth wide open. Just then, another bee swooped down at his mouth.
Henry moved faster than a comic character, closing Dylan’s mouth with one hand and swinging his other hand in the air to ward off the bee. “Nasty things.”
“How do you know my name, Hank?” Dylan mumbled through his closed mouth, because Henry’s hand was still on his chin.
“It’s Henry to you, and I’ve been expecting you. You’re uglier than I expected,” he retorted, pulling his hand away.

About the Author:

Blair Drake believes in magic, especially the magic of stories with fantasy, adventures, romance, action, and surprises. She has loved writing and living in the stories of the Finding Magic series and is so excited to share the quests of the Gray Cliffs Academy students with her readers.

When she’s not writing about magic, she’s reading about it. Her influences are Cassandra Claire, Neil Gaiman, Rick Riordan, Garth Nix, and many more.

In the mortal plane, following the lure of magic has drawn Blair into strange and wonderful adventures from Australia to New York City, with many stops in between. She currently lives near Denver. Her very favorite spot is a red loveseat in her office, frequently shared with two cats, an outnumbered Dalmation, and occasionally her bewitched husband.

She might have gone to a school similar to Gray Cliffs Academy and would love to go through a magic portal. In the meantime, she’s creating her own in more books of magic.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Viking King’s Vendetta by Sky Purington

Viking King’s Vendetta

Viking Ancestors

Rise of the Dragon

Book One

Sky Purington     

Genre: Time Travel Fantasy/Shifter Romance

Date of Publication:  August 13, 2018


Number of pages:  260
Word Count:  83,000

Cover Artist:  Tara West

Book Description:

Taking a few months to reflect on what she truly wants from life, Emily returns to her family home in Winter Harbor, Maine. Yet she should have known her ties with ancient Scandinavia and those with dragon blood would catch up with her. Moreover, that her connection with the man she loves would be impossible to ignore. Something soon proven when he pulls her back in time to tenth century Norway.

Determined to help his people defeat a dark prophecy, Viking Sven Sigdir returns to his homeland to find two regions minus their beloved kings. Leaderless, both clans look to Sven to rule. Though willing to rise up, he must first uncover the root of the prophecy. That means reuniting with the woman who holds his heart and setting forth on a perilous journey.

Sven and Emily navigate not only their feelings for one another but the burgeoning prophecy that might take it all away. Will they be able to conquer their new adversary before it's too late? Or is this just the beginning of something that will change life as they know it? Find out in Viking King's Vendetta, an action-packed adventure ripe with sizzling passion, epic battles, unexpected twists and memorable characters.

Excerpt 1

“I need to go to Sven.” She worked to remain strong and level, rather than let emotions get the better of her. “How is he?”
“As to be expected,” Samantha replied.
She knew full well what ‘as to be expected’ meant when it came to Sven. He was somewhere alone whittling wood deep in thought, not sharing a darn thing with anyone. So imagine her surprise when they arrived, and she heard him roaring orders.
“Loki’s hell,” she muttered before she sprinted through the village in his direction. She ran past cottages with their long sloping roofs and a medieval society that had long been her own. Though many murmured hello, there was no missing the somber feel of the place.
Determined to at least stop Sven’s ranting, she rushed in the front door of the main lodge and stopped short. Though she had intended to race into his arms and hug him like she had always done, she did nothing of the sort.
No, she just stared at him.
Dressed in black pants, heavy boots, and a black leather jerkin, he raked a hand through his ebony hair as he paced. Though he had always been extraordinarily handsome, he was more so now. Was he always so tall and broad? Did he always carry himself with such confidence? His features had always been striking, but even they seemed to have changed. Matured somehow into a face that made her breath catch and her heart skip a beat. 
His turbulent cobalt blue eyes turned her way. “Emily.”
That was it. That was all he said in a voice deeper than she recalled. But it was all she needed to snap out of her reverie and fly into his arms despite the annoying and very sudden shyness she felt. He didn’t say anything just wrapped her up in his arms like he had always done. Yet, not surprisingly, even that felt different. More encompassing.
That’s when she realized she was home.
It wasn’t the village or even the people but him. She pressed her cheek against his chest and inhaled deeply. She had missed his scent. Spruce, and woodland. Him. Sven. Her best friend.
“You are here,” he finally murmured, clearly relieved as he cupped her cheeks then brushed his lips across her forehead, just like he had always done. His eyes met hers. “I was worried about you.”

“Me too…I was worried…” She pressed her lips together, rallying her strength when she wanted to sob in relief. Now wasn’t the time for that. Like Samantha said, he needed her to be strong. That’s how they worked. If she was faltering, he was strong for her and vice versa. That was their thing.

About the Author:

Sky Purington is the bestselling author of forty novels and novellas. A New Englander born and bred who recently moved to Virginia, Sky was raised hearing stories of folklore, myth, and legend. When combined with a love for history, romance, and time-travel, elements from the stories of her youth found release in her books.

Purington loves to hear from readers and can be contacted at Sky@SkyPurington. Interested in keeping up with Sky’s latest news and releases? Either visit Sky’s website,, subscribe to her quarterly newsletter or sign up for personalized text message alerts. Simply text 'skypurington' (no quotes, one word, all lowercase) to 74121 or visit Sky’s Sign-up Page. Texts will ONLY be sent when there is a new book release. Readers can easily opt out at any time.

Love social networking? Find Sky on Facebook and Twitter.



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An Angel’s Unintentional Entanglement by Tena Stetler

An Angel’s Unintentional Entanglement   
A Demon’s Witch’s Series

Book Four
Tena Stetler

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press

Date of Publication: August 6, 2018

ISBN:  978-1-5092-2142-4 Paperback
ISBN:  978-1-5092-2143-1 Digital

Number of pages: 408
Word Count: 98,000

Cover Artist: Kristian Norris

Tagline:  Warrior angels are forbidden to fall in love…sometimes fate has other ideas.

Book Description:

Fallen warrior angel, Caden Silverwind, lives alone in Colorado's rugged Rockies, healing from physical wounds as well as the mental anguish suffered during battles with dark demons. Then he finds a woman barely clinging to life after a horrendous beating. He is not prepared for the entanglement she brings to his life, nor the feelings she awakens in him.

Bureau of Indian Affairs Agent, Mystic Rayne’s personal dilemma and assignment nearly gets her killed. Divine intervention is a complication she never expected and her growing attraction to Caden is undeniable. Can she trust him with her secret?

Their quest to uncover her attacker takes them from the pristine mountains in Colorado to the wilds of Wyoming. Along the way, they find answers which may place them in more danger. Determined to solve the mystery, they must also navigate their feelings and fears to find love and unite heaven and earth.

Amazon       Amazon UK        Amazon AU

Kobo      BN      iTunes      The Wild Rose Press

Sunrise brought an orange glow spreading over the top of Independence Pass, bathing the valley in warm golden shards of sunlight. Caden stood on the ridge with wings spread, brushing the breeze and absorbing the sun’s warmth. Feels better than yesterday. Finally, I’m gaining some strength back. It was time to move on to Maroon Bells and the lake to enjoy summer in the Rocky Mountains. Carefully, he tucked his wings in and picked his way down the trail. Dislodged rocks and sticks bounced down the path ahead of him as he stopped to admire the view and noticed something in the brush.

She lay naked, battered, and beaten several yards off the trail. Her long, straight black hair fanned around her head, tangled with twigs and bits of grass.  Caden moved silently toward her, stopped, and picked up a Bureau of Indian Affairs ID a few feet from where she lay. He stuffed it in his pocket while watching the surrounding area for signs of her attackers. Kneeling down at her side, he saw scratches and bruises on her high-sculpted cheekbones and her full lips had a shading of blue around them. He placed his hand lightly on her chest, felt a weak heartbeat and sensed a brave soul unwilling to give up. God, this is the last thing I need.

About the Author:

Tena Stetler is a best-selling author of award winning paranormal romance novels. She has an over-active imagination, which led to writing her first vampire romance as a tween to the chagrin of her mother and delight of her friends. After many years as a paralegal, then an IT Manager, she decided to live out her dream of pursuing a publishing career.

With the Rocky Mountains outside her window, she sits at her computer surrounded by a wide array of witches, shapeshifters, demons, faeries, and gryphons, with a Navy SEAL or two mixed in telling their tales. Her books tell stories of magical kick-ass women and mystical alpha males that dare to love them.

Well, okay there are a few companion animals to round out the tales. Travel, a bit of mystery, and adventure flourish in her books.

Twitter Page:           

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Friday, August 10, 2018

Free Book Friday August 10 Secrets and Solace by Jana Richards

***** Free Book Friday Friday August 10 *****

Secrets and Solace
Love at Solace Lake
Book 2
Jana Richards 

Love is worth the risk…

When their grandfather dies, the Lindquist sisters, Harper, Scarlet and Maggie, inherit the northern Minnesota fishing lodge that had been in their family for three generations. The inheritance is bittersweet. They were raised at the lodge by their grandparents. The natural beauty of the place hasn’t changed, but the building itself is crumbling and desperately in need of repair. The lodge also reminds them of what they lost. Twenty-two years previously, their parents died there in what was ruled a murder/suicide.

As the sisters struggle to breathe new life into the failing lodge, old fears and questions rise to the surface even as new love presents itself. Why did their father murder their mother? What truths did their grandparents keep from them? The sisters must fight to keep the wounds of the past from putting their futures, and their fledgling relationships, in jeopardy.

No matter how deeply buried, secrets rise to the surface.

Scarlett Lindquist has agreed to help her sisters rebuild the dilapidated fishing lodge in Minnesota they inherited from their grandparents. Although the lengthy restoration is bringing the three sisters closer together, Scarlett’s support is temporary. Her leave of absence from her job in Chicago is temporary and she has no intention of staying at Solace Lake Lodge, where the lake holds dark secrets. When frightening childhood memories resurface, they are tempered by her fascination with an irritating contractor. If only she could trust her feelings for him. If only he could trust her.

Cameron Hainstock meets Scarlett at his brother’s wedding to her sister and their attraction is instantaneous. But Cam avoids the beautiful marketing executive. All his efforts are aimed at battling for custody of his only child. When the unimaginable happens and Cam faces the biggest challenge of his life, he’s reluctant to accept help to halt his downward spiral. Can they learn to trust each other and fight for a future together or will they go their separate ways?

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#freebook #FreeBookFriday #KindleFreebie #LiesandSolace #Romance #BewitchingBookTours #JanaRichards #LoveatSolacelake

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Cover Reveal The Affliction by Wendy E Marsh

The Affliction
Wendy E Marsh

Genre: New Adult Paranormal

Publisher: Torrid Books of Start Media  
Simon and Schuster Partner

Date of Publication: 12/20/18

ISBN: 978-1-68299-301-9

Number of pages: 248
Word Count: 86,874

Cover Artist: Kelly Martin

Tagline: “Heart throbbing, nail biting Wendy E Marsh’s THE AFFLICTION will hold your attention until the end.” Stephanie Hansen, METAMORPHOSIS LITERARY AGENCY

Book Description:

A shadow passes behind the stranger’s hazel eyes, momentarily distracting Aubrie Lander from the scars slashing down his face and disappearing beneath his tightly fitted t-shirt. But she doesn’t care what makes this equally handsome and terrifying man so solemn. She wants to know why she feels compelled to sit across the booth from him while waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

Aubrie can smell the whiskey as her new acquaintance lowers his glass to the table, never taking those troubled eyes off her, and her intuition tells her that her life is about to change forever.

In one night, Aubrie’s small-town life collapses, as the stranger’s secret plunges her into an underworld that leads her on a non-stop journey of self-discovery, the unearthing of a secret society, and finding unexpected love she is willing to die for.

The ultimate question, though, is will she kill for him?

Simon and Schuster      Amazon     iTunes     BN

BooksAMillion     GooglePlay     Kobo

About the Author:

Pennsylvania, where she spent a substantial amount of time as a child knee deep in pond water catching tadpoles and salamanders. She also developed a passion for reading and creative writing, which evolved into a love of writing paranormal romance novels. She loves reading books that keep her awake into the early morning and creating stories that do the same. She has her Doctorate of Physical Therapy and works with children with special needs and developmental delays. She currently lives with her fiancé and two fur kids, Bandit the tabby cat and Kara the hound dog. In Wendy’s spare time she enjoys riding her horses, hunting, and anything else that gets her outdoors. Whether she is making silly faces to entertain a child learning to walk or writing about two characters falling in love, she lets her imagination direct her passion.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Elijah's Quest by Blair Drake

Elijah's Quest
Finding Magic
Book Four
Blair Drake

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Magic Quest Books

Date of Publication: June 28, 2018


Number of pages: 208
Word Count: 72,800

Cover Artist: Jennifer Zemanek/Seedlings LLC

Tagline: What would you do to find your magic?

Book Description:

Life as a seventeen-year-old jock at Gray Cliffs Academy is hard for Elijah Davies. Failing grades? Check. On the headmaster's hit list? Check. Dumped by girlfriend? Still working out the precise logistics on that one...

When Elijah called his girlfriend's obsession with the Live Action Role Play game Legends of Orynthica stupid, he never dreamed Zoe would break up with him. Before he has a chance to make it up to her, a violent storm sweeps him into an unfamiliar world full of Ice Trolls and vicious warriors—and worse, he's got the sneaking suspicion this new world is Orynthica.

Elijah doesn't believe in magic, but everyone thinks he's the Catalyst—a mage who will help the people of Thanasi win both the Ascension Games and its prize: the magic Yarlstone that can restore balance to the lands.

The only person who doesn't have faith in him? Zora Stormshadow—Zoe's Orynthican alter ago—and the leader of the Thanasi team. Nine teams of four enter the Ascension Games, only one survives. The fate of Orynthica rests on Elijah's shoulders. Can he learn to wield his magic? And will he ever get a chance to make it up to Zoe in his own world?

Book 4 Excerpt

Elijah fell through the portal and slammed into something cold and hard.
Air exploded from his chest, leaving his lungs sucking in nothing. He was pretty sure the entire St. Margaret's defensive line just smashed into him—either that or a freight train.
Where was he?
He coughed and managed to lurch to his hands and knees. He'd landed in a snowdrift. Enormous mountains reared around him, trees wearing the mantle of winter. 
One second he was standing on the roof of Gray Cliffs. The next he was...
Somewhere far away.
"Headmaster Auster?" he called. If you're out there, I solemnly swear I shall never call you the Grauster again. "Headmistress Lalane?"
Maybe he was concussed from the fall? Or maybe he was dreaming? His fingers were freezing, and he was starting to shiver, but he still pinched his forearm, just to make sure.
Ouch. Not dreaming.
"Rhys?" he yelled, turning around in circles. "Jasper?"
He'd seen the others go flying off the roof, sucked into the same sort of vortex that picked him up. Maybe they were here somewhere too?
He yanked his cell phone out of his pocket. The screen was shattered, but he breathed a sigh of relief when it lit up at the touch of his thumb.
Then his heart fell. No bars. No service.
Sliding the phone open, he flicked through it, holding it up as he walked to a higher vantage point. Still no bars.
The sky was grim and gray, heavy with mist. Elijah could see little more than the stark line of mountains around him, wearing their snowy cloaks. His breath steamed in the crisp air as he slowly lowered the phone and caught a flash of something moving out of the corner of his eye.
Elijah froze, his gaze darting over the landscape. Nothing moved. Just a slow veil of snowflakes drifting through the air, like some sort of winter wonderland.
But something had caught his attention, hadn't it?
What if he wasn't alone?
There was something out there watching him. He was sure of it.
If there was someone out there, then they might be able to help him, but what if it was some sort of animal? He took a few more steps, his gaze raking the tree line. Something moved on the other side of him, and his head jerked in that direction.
Two of them?
A little prickle of trepidation crept down his spine.He'd watched enough David Attenborough to know he didn't think he wanted to find out what they were. Right now he was the straggler of the herd, cut away from any sense of safety.
Turning to run, he staggered through the snow, his school shoes completely unsuited for the terrain.
"Halt!" barked a sharp voice behind him.
Yeah, right. He shot a glance over his shoulder and saw some kind of white, fur-covered beast racing down the slope toward him.
A snowdrift in front of him suddenly reared up, icy powder flinging everywhere. A spear pointed directly at him as a second fur-covered beast erupted through the snow.
"Whoa." Elijah scrambled back. He went down in a drift, staring at the enormous beast glaring down at him with beady eyes. No. Not a beast. A hairy man with a beard that looked like it belonged next to a tankard of beer.
He stared.
The man stared back.
That was definitely a spear, though the point of it looked like it was carved crudely out of black glass...or maybe obsidian.
What was going on here? For a second he thought his girlfriend, Zoe, was playing a trick on him. She was obsessed with Live Action Role Playing, and spent the last weekend—presumably—on one of her LARP quests. Had she coerced some of her new friends into paying him back for the not-so-kind comments he made about her gaming? She dumped him over those stupid words, so it was a possibility.
Except for one small fact: Zoe had nothing to do with the scene on the roof and the storm plucking him up and sending him spinning into this snowy plane.
And Zoe wasn't mean.
"Who are you?" the stranger demanded.
Another man waded through the snow behind him, clad in what looked like polar bear fur.
"Elijah Davies," he said.
"Elijor of House Davies?"
"No. Eli-jah," he emphasized. "Of Vancouver."
No sign of recognition flared in the man's coal-black eyes.
He was starting to shake from the cold and the aftereffects of adrenaline, but he didn't know what to think. Because these guys looked like Lord of the Rings wannabes. And despite the spear, they wouldn't hurt him, would they? There still had to be police here, didn't there?
"Do you know where I am?" He lifted his phone. "You can call my mom or my school if you want, and speak to them as soon as I get service—"
The man with the spear whirled and brought it down upon Elijah's hand. The phone fell into the snow. "What are you doing?" he blurted, kneeling to dig for it. "That cost me a fortune!"
The point of the spear suddenly whirled and pressed right into his throat. Elijah froze.
Police or not, this suddenly felt serious.
"Don't move," said the stranger. "We will have none of your magic here, mage."
"Is this some trick of Zoe's? If you're after a mage, that's the sort of thing she's interested in. I don't do LARP or—"
The spear dug a little deeper, and he shut up.
Okay. Point taken.
"Yeorfac," the other man called. "You cannot kill him until we take him to the princess. She will wish to delve him."
"He's a mage," the man—presumably Yeorfac—bit out. "He's probably a Pasternakian spy."
Yeorfac made a point of spitting in the snow at Elijah's feet.
Gr-oss. "Not a spy," Elijah said. "Not a mage. I don't know what you're talking about."
"You appeared from nowhere," Yeorfac snarled.
"Careful," Elijah squeaked. "I shaved this morning. I'm good."
The newcomer grabbed the spear and eased it away from Elijah's throat. "I saw it too." He was shorter than Yeorfac and a little older, his red hair and beard starting to gray. "I am Zandui, of Clan Tarven. We are of the Ice Fang Nation."
Thank Christ. Someone sensible—or as sensible as one could be while talking about clans and nations.
He doesn't have a spear at your throat. Sensible enough for me.
"And you are our prisoner," Zandui stated, yanking a set of leather cords from his belt. "Hold your hands out in front of you."
Prisoner? "Hold up. I think we've got some wires crossed somewhere. I—"
The butt of the spear appeared out of nowhere and smashed between his eyebrows, snapping his head back. Elijah slammed flat on his back, blinking as the world slowly came in and out of focus.
"We'll have to blindfold him," Zandui said, rifling through a pack, "before we take him to the princess's palace."
"He's a mage," Yeorfac muttered. "He'll be able to sense where we are. I say we cut his throat here and now. With the Ascension coming, the fewer mages the Lowlanders have on their side, the better our hero's chances of taking the games."
"Is it?" Zandui asked. "What if he was on our side?"
"If I was a mage," Elijah ground out, pressing the heel of his palm to his forehead as he slowly wrenched himself onto his knees. "Do you think I'd have just let you hit me like that?"
The pair of them exchanged a glance.
"And why would I work for you guys?" He met Zandui's gaze and stabbed a finger toward Yeorfac. "Your friend wants to kill me."
"He claims he's from Vancoover. I don't know this Vancoover, but it sounds Pasternakian to me," Yeorfac said.
"I'm pretty sure you're the type of guy who sees Pasternakian's everywhere you look, huh?" he snapped.
Zandui's slow gaze told Elijah he hit the nail on the head.
"Look, I don't know where I am, or how I came to be here either. There was a storm. The next thing I know I'm dumped in a snowdrift in the freaking Arctic, or something. I just want to get home. To Gray Cliffs. Or to Vancouver. Or hell, I'll even settle on Earth."
Zandui's gaze snapped to his.
"Earth," Elijah repeated slowly. "You know that word."
There was a horrible spinning sensation somewhere deep inside him. What if he wasn't in the wilds of Canada? What if he wasn't even on his own world?
Zoe loved sci-fi and fantasy novels. He'd idly flicked through a few of them, though he preferred movies to reading. And there was that weird indie cult hit last summer about parallel worlds. What had it been called again? Worldstrider?
Oh no. Heck no.
He was the very last person who should ever be sent to a parallel world. He didn't even believe in magic. Zoe would be perfect for the job.
"We need to take him to the Keeper," Zandui said. 
"What world is this?" Elijah breathed out slowly. They both stared at him. "What world is this?" he yelled.
A roar suddenly bellowed through the mountains, freezing the blood in his veins.
Yeorfac spun, tension lining his body. Elijah stared into the distance, his breath sounding loud. "Um, what the hell was that?"
Zandui wrenched at his arm. "Trull hyggen. Move!"

"Trull...troll?" he gasped.

About the Author:

Blair Drake believes in magic, especially the magic of stories with fantasy, adventures, romance, action, and surprises. She has loved writing and living in the stories of the Finding Magic series and is so excited to share the quests of the Gray Cliffs Academy students with her readers.

When she’s not writing about magic, she’s reading about it. Her influences are Cassandra Claire, Neil Gaiman, Rick Riordan, Garth Nix, and many more.

In the mortal plane, following the lure of magic has drawn Blair into strange and wonderful adventures from Australia to New York City, with many stops in between. She currently lives near Denver. Her very favorite spot is a red loveseat in her office, frequently shared with two cats, an outnumbered Dalmation, and occasionally her bewitched husband.

She might have gone to a school similar to Gray Cliffs Academy and would love to go through a magic portal. In the meantime, she’s creating her own in more books of magic.

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