Title : Lights Of Aurora, book 2 of The Stone Legacy Series
Author : Theresa McClinton
After the discovery of her ancient Maya bloodlines, eighteen-year-old Ashley Coreandero is faced with a daunting responsibility. She must protect the stone of Muuk’Ich while Sarian, the underworld general, relentlessly drives her to the brink of insanity.
As the winter solstice approaches, it brings an onslaught of unexpected side effects. Ashley must seize control over her supercharged powers, while dealing with the overwhelming suspicion that her boyfriend, Arwan, is hiding a secret so dark it could destroy them both.
With the arrival of a surprise houseguest, Ashley’s deepest fears about Arwan are confirmed. And when middleworld deities intercede, the group of gifted Maya descendants are confronted with hardships they never saw coming—including an enemy more deadly than they have ever faced.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned—but when that woman has no soul and a taste for revenge, they will need the powers of every surviving ancestor simply to stay alive.
Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/mkhmvpb (99c for the duration of the tour)
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A long time enthusiast of things that go bump in the night, Theresa began her writing career as a journalism intern—possibly the least creative writing field out there. After her first semester at a local newspaper, she washed her hands of press releases and feature articles to delve into the whimsical world of fiction.
Since then, Theresa has been married, had three terrific kids, moved to central Ohio, and has been repeatedly guilt tripped into adopting a menagerie of animals that are now members of the family. But don’t be fooled by her domesticated appearance. Her greatest love is travel. Having traveled to over a dozen countries—not to mention an extended seven-year stay in Kodiak, Alaska—she is anything but settled down. But wherever life brings her, Theresa will continue to weave tales of adventure and love with the hope her stories will bring joy and inspiration to her readers.
Coming Soon: 13th Street, Novella 2.5 of The Stone Legacy Series.
Finally the caves were in sight. Good thing, because it meant Ashley could finally break the awkward silence. Her humiliation and raw need for some alone time had kept her from saying a word for the last hour. Yes, Arwan handled her little predicament with class—but still. Your libido being ramped into overdrive was abnormal, no matter how much he wanted to claim otherwise. She still had a lot to learn about being Riyata, and this was definitely a curveball. Especially when it was caused by a force completely out of her control or understanding. Worse, she had no idea when it would calm down, or at least lend her a little sanity. For now, she’d have to be satisfied with finding something legitimate to talk about so the topic didn’t come up again. God, please don’t let the topic come up again. Her cheeks flushed. “Do you want to camp out here, or go straight into the caves?” she asked, focused on the terrain ahead. She’d have to keep her distance from him if they camped out again, jaguar lurking in the jungle or not. “We need to keep moving,” Arwan replied from behind her. The texture of the earth changed under her feet as they drew closer to the entrance. The ground, once spongy and cushioned with layers of fallen leaves and soil, had hardened to compressed dirt. The shadow of the towering mountain face cooled the air and sent a chill over Ashley’s skin. It wasn’t just the temperature that made her shiver, but the dark energy growing stronger with every step. She was able to ignore it until the light in her chest flickered on by itself, and her stone responded to the energy with a burst of panic. Ashley stopped and clenched her stomach as she stared into the gaping mouth of the mountain. “This place is freaking me out.” Arwan stopped beside her. “We’re about to enter the gate to the underworld. I’m not surprised.” She should have expected as much, but she never thought the cave would carry so much power. A pool of saliva collected under her tongue. “So, do we just go in?” He eyed the caves. “I guess we don’t have a choice.” “Right.” She swallowed. “Okay. Let’s do this,” she said in the most gung-ho tone she could muster. She shifted the weight of her pack, drew in a cleansing breath, and took a step forward. The atmosphere shuddered, and a harsh energy forced her to her knees. She clawed at her chest. Every breath burned her lungs. Arwan grabbed her around the waist and pulled her up. She clung to him, working hard to regain her footing. It was as if they had stepped through some kind of barrier. One she didn’t react well to. His clenched jaw and stiff brow told her he felt the change, too. “Let’s just go,” she said between sharp breaths. It took a few yards, but she was finally able to shake the effects and stand on her own. As they stepped into the darkness of the cave, Ashley summoned the light in her chest to guide them. A soft glow, like that of a candle, wavered and morphed over the walls. A canvas for ancient drawings appeared upon the textured surface. Ashley stopped and examined the crude figure of a man in a headdress. Speckles of blood dripped from the point of a knife’s blade, which protruded through the man’s tongue clear to the other side. Ashley narrowed her eyes and rested her hand against the cold surface of the rock. “What the hell?” Arwan moved beside her. “Bloodletting. It’s a common practice among the Maya during religious rituals.” “Jesus.” She peered at the surrounding images of women with pierced breasts, and children—she took a step back, allowing her fingers to slip away from the stone. “Good God. Why didn’t they just kill a goat or something? This is barbaric.” “Human blood appeases the gods,” he said in a soft voice as she backed away. “Animal blood is inadequate. It’s considered an insult.” She scanned the painted walls, and realized there were drawings all around them. “Let’s just get out of here.” Another chill ran over her skin from the same raw power scraping at her nerves. “These people were monsters.” “These people are our ancestors,” he stated. Ashley huffed. “Those people,” she snarled as she pointed at the paintings, “may be our ancestors, but we’re nothing like them. They were obviously evil, or they wouldn’t be killing kids to summon rain—which is stupid to think that would work anyway. It’s just sick.” She turned and threw her pack on the ground. Arwan hadn’t replied. Probably because there was nothing to say in defense, and she didn’t understand how he could even remotely side with that kind of religious practice. Killing people to please higher powers? What kind of god would require that? Not any she chose to revere, that’s for sure. Arwan set his pack down beside hers and pulled out a bottle of water and an energy bar. He gestured to her bag with a nod of his head. “You should eat something before we move on.” He cracked open his water and drank it down in a single breath. “I don’t know when we’ll have a chance to eat or drink again.” Ashley pulled out her stone and cradled it in her hands. Its colors morphed dark-blue and violet. She frowned and rested it against her chest. “I know you’re freaked out,” she whispered. “Just try to stay calm. We won’t be here long.” He leaned toward her, peering at her stone. “You’re talking to it?” “Yeah. It understands me.” She ran her fingers over its hot surface. “It’s scared.” She clenched her jaw while the sharp energy of her stone scalded her hands. “You know, it’s just like Sarian to do something like this. He breaks the obedience spell with that book, and instead of just doing whatever he has planned—he drags it out. I mean…” Her shoulders slumped forward, aching from the weight of her pack. “I don’t know what he’s up to, but it fits his MO. He gets off on watching people suffer.” “Which is why we need to keep going.” “Yeah, I know.” “But we can’t take our packs with us.” Her head bobbed up. “What? Why?” Arwan zipped his pack closed and shoved it against the wall. “We won’t be able to bring them through the portal.” “Oh.” But her stone was large, and too awkward to carry in her hands. She had to figure out a way to take it and not have it weigh her down. After a moment deep in thought, she raised it to eye level. “I bet you’d be awesome as a river pebble,” she whispered. Arwan continued to watch her, but she didn’t mind. He was curious, and for once, it was nice to know something he didn’t. She cradled the stone against her chest and closed her eyes, focused on holding a picture in her mind. A soft plume of power rippled through her body, and when she opened her eyes, her stone had changed to a smooth, oval river pebble, nestled in the palm of her hand. Though it retained its color and light, it was much more portable. She closed her fingers around its hot surface, causing her skin to scream. Ashley ignored the pain and focused on calming it down with deep, cleansing breaths. “How did you do that?” Arwan asked in a soft whisper. “It’s called transformation. It’s an ability I read about in one of Renato’s books.” She opened her cupped hands and watched the stone’s colors slowly return to white and blue. “I practiced it at home a few times with some things from my mom’s old vanity. Cool, huh?” “Very.” He continued to stare at the stone’s pulsing light push through the cracks of her fingers. “It must be strange to feel it like you do.” “A little, but in a way it’s been a part of me my entire life.” Back in the orphanage, she’d dreamed about it again and again. She was drawn to it. Linked to it. No matter how much danger there was around her, she always sought it out. Of course, Sarian managed to step in the way each and every time, but she never stopped searching. She slipped the stone into the front pocket of her sweater as Arwan propped her bag against the rock wall. “We’ll leave our supplies here, and get them when we come out.”
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The author has also kindly allowed each blog to giveaway an eCopy of Lights Of Aurora so if your interested please comment below :)
I haven't heard of this author before, but I'll be on the lookout for more great reads from her!ReplyDelete
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Glad I could show you something different :)Delete
Thanks so much for stopping in. I'm also really glad my books show you something different and unique. :) That's always fun!Delete
Thanks to Book Lovers Life for having me on your blog today! I LOVE the look of your blog. In fact, I've had the pleasure of being hosted on tons of gorgeous blogs lately!ReplyDelete
You are welcome here anytime! :)Delete
I'm looking forward to reading Lights of Aurora,ReplyDelete