Everyone hates a tease … unless it’s for a great book! This week we’re sharing teasers from Sweethearts books. Some are already published and others are our current works in progress.
But first, an announcement! Congratulations to Stephanie Scott, whose short story, “Meant to be Broken,” appears in the YA adoption-themed anthology, WELCOME HOME, out next week from Flux Books!
Which leads us to our first teaser….
Stephanie Scott: This is from “Meant To Be Broken,” from WELCOME HOME:
Five years of nothing, and now this. Five years of no answers and empty Facebook search results, and then my childhood best friend Becca showed up in a box overflowing with unfiled paperwork.
This was crazy. I was staring at a file in an adoption agency. Becca already had a family. What was her name and information doing here?
Her name in bold font, Rebecca Sampson, marched across the top of a form with the Little Hands Adoption Agency logo. My heart stuttered, caught somewhere between exhausting itself and failing entirely. I’d been focused on logging my National Honor Society volunteer hours by sorting through boxes in the agency’s neglected storeroom. Grunt work easy enough to hand off to a student. I’d never expected to, you know, recognize anyone. A photo slipped onto my lap. A twelve-years-old Becca stared back. Stringy brown hair, a smile hinting at mischief, and tanned skin from a summer tearing up the neighborhood on our bikes. My Becca.
Darcy Woods: These are the opening lines from my current work in progress, SMOKE, which is a YA contemporary with a secondary romance plot line.
Sometimes you feel the whisper of a storm before it hits. Smell the tang of ozone as it punctuates the air. Watch the once lifeless hair on your arms rise like the dead. The energy, the charge, it becomes a real and palpable thing.
But other times, like tonight, you sense nothing.
And it’s of little consequence to the storm whether or not you’re prepared. Because either way, it’s coming.
Lightening carves jagged marks across the sky. My attic bedroom explodes with brightness. I squeeze my eyes tight, willing the storm to pass. Praying for it to pass. But the foreboding zigzag pattern lingers behind my eyelids, killing those fragile hopes. My pulse gains speed.
One-Mississippi. Two-Mississippi. Three-Mississippi . . .
I get all the way to seven-Mississippi before the deafening crash. Thunder punches like a fist through the atmosphere, pounding against the earth. The powerful echo carries inside my body, reverberating through every limb.
By my count the storm’s a mile away and closing in.
Erin Fletcher: This is an excerpt from ALL LACED UP, out now from Entangled Crush.
At the very last second, instead of turning one way or the other, she turned her skate blades hard, coming to a stop just before hitting the boards, facing me, eyes closed, bracing for impact. I threw myself into a stop, too, throwing ice shavings everywhere.
Could I have stopped before pinning her to the boards? Yes. Did I? No. I stayed with my skates trapping hers on either side, our bodies touching at knees and hips. Her chest was rising and falling rapidly, breaths warm against my chest, but there was a smile on her face, all traces of worry over her test completely gone. Success.
Linda Budzinski: This is the opening of my work in progress, THE BOYFRIEND WHISPERER 2.0 (a sequel to THE BOYFRIEND WHISPERER, published in November by Swoon Romance).
I sink back into the booth and rub my temples. Not sure whether this headache is from my mango smoothie or the fact that my ex just strolled into the Juice Joint with his arm around Becca Marsh.
My two best friends, Maggs and Brie, give me a look.
“What is this, his third girlfriend since you two broke up?” Brie curls her lip. She’s never been a Ty Walker fan. “That boy has commitment issues.”
Maggs points her straw at me. “His problem is, you’ve ruined him. He can’t find anyone else who measures up to the fabulous Alicea Springer.”
I smile in spite of the pickax piercing my head. “Yeah. I’m sure that’s it.”
Ty is everything I could ever want in a boyfriend. Athletic, super cute, and really, really, really smart. He’s this season’s leading scorer for the Grand View High School soccer team. He’s applied for early action to Harvard, Princeton, and Penn. He’s amazing, and he’s the perfect guy for me. Well, except for the whole dumping-me-a-week-before-junior-prom thing.
Robin Constantine: This is taken from THE SEASON OF YOU & ME, out now from Balzer+Bray/HarperCollins.
Later, when the sun finally set, we gathered out front to watch the fireworks display that my dad and Owen put on every year. It wasn’t as big as the ones near the beach, but they did have enough artillery shells and repeaters to make it impressive. Cass was busy helping Hunter catch fireflies, a huge grin on her face as she closed her palms around one. She opened her hands to let Hunter take a peek.
I knew Cassidy Emmerich was a summer girl. Tori was right – she’d be gone at the end of the tourist season, but as I sat there watching her, I didn’t care. I liked her. I did. There was something about Cass when she didn’t realize anyone was watching her. I saw it when she helped the kids in camp, when she laughed with Jena at the pool in the morning, and now with Hunter. And in that moment, as she held out her hand to let the firefly loose, I realized that I didn’t care whether she was in Crest Haven for four minutes, four hours, four days or four weeks. I wanted to be in Cassidy’s life, to know her, and whatever time we had, it would have to be enough.
Karole Cozzo: My teaser is from THE GAME CAN’T LOVE YOU BACK, scheduled for publication in May 2018 by Swoon Reads.
My hands are at my side, but no matter how hard I clench them… it does nothing. It doesn’t cut off the feelings the way I want it to.
And if I’m being at all honest with myself, nothing I’d tried over the weekend had kept them from tormenting me either . I still ended up… time after time… reliving the conversation on the bus with him, replaying his words. Remembering how… okay, how good he looked all dressed up like that, how he looked even better when he untucked his shirt, and turned his hat around. Like an MLB player getting off the bus from a road trip, which is pretty much the height of hotness.
Replaying that moment in the parking lot, when our hands touched, when he winked at me. Sure, it’s probably a practiced move of his but yet… it didn’t seem like Jamie was putting something on with me.
I stare out the window and swallow hard. I draw my fist up to my mouth and end up biting down on a knuckle, knowing that after today there will be even more moments to replay, more sensations to squelch. After being pressed into that dark corner with him, his body making contact with mine, conjuring thoughts of kissing.
Suddenly, I’m full-on nauseous, because the valve isn’t working, and as much as I want to, I can’t play dumb.
I know what that obnoxious combination of pleasure and heartache is… I know it’s a crush.
My shoulders collapse as I finally acknowledge it, my eyes going skyward toward the clouds that pass in a blur.
Dear Lord, please spare me the indignity of having a crush on Jamie Abrams.
So what do you think? Would you read on? Do you have a teaser you’d like to share? We’d love to read it in the comments! xoxoxo