Welcome to YA Scavenger Hunt! This bi-annual event was first organized by author Colleen Houck as a way to give readers a chance to gain access to exclusive bonus material from their favorite authors…and a chance to win some awesome prizes!
At this hunt, you not only get access to exclusive content from each author, you also get a clue for the hunt. Add up the clues, and you can enter for our prize–one lucky winner will receive one book from each author on the hunt in my team! But play fast: this contest (and all the exclusive bonus material) will only be online for 120 hours!
Go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page to find out all about the hunt. There are seven contests going on simultaneously, and you can enter one or all! I am a part of the GREEN TEAM–but there is also a red team, an orange team, a gold team, a blue team, a purple team, and a pink team for a chance to win a whole different set of books
If you’d like to find out more about the hunt, see links to all the authors participating, and see the full list of prizes up for grabs, go to the YA Scavenger Hunt page.
SCAVENGER HUNT PUZZLE
Directions: Below, you’ll notice that I’ve hidden my favorite number. Collect the favorite numbers of all the authors on the green team, and then add them up (don’t worry, you can use a calculator!).
Entry Form: Once you’ve added up all the numbers, make sure you fill out the form here to officially qualify for the grand prize. Only entries that have the correct number will qualify.
Rules: Open internationally, anyone below the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian’s permission to enter. To be eligible for the grand prize, you must submit the completed entry form by Oct. 9, at noon Pacific Time. Entries sent without the correct number or without contact information will not be considered.
And now for the good stuff!
Today, I am hosting the lovely Shaila Patel!
As an unabashed lover of all things happily-ever-after, Shaila Patel’s younger self would finish reading her copy of Cinderella and fling it across the room because it didn’t mention what happened next. Now she writes from her home in the Carolinas and dreams up all sorts of stories with epilogues. A member of the Romance Writers of America, she’s a pharmacist by training, a medical office manager by day, and a writer by night. Soulmated, her #ownvoices debut novel, was the 2015 Chanticleer Book Reviews Paranormal Awards for Young Adult winner. The sequel, Fighting Fate, releases April 2018.
Check out the blurbs for Book 1 and 2 in the Soulmated series. You will find buy links for both books on Shaila’s website. After reading the blurbs, I’ve added both to my TBR!
Soulmated – The Joining of Souls Series Book 1:
Soulmated is an #ownvoices urban fantasy romance about an Irish empath prince named Liam Whelan who’s forced to search for his empath soul mate by his parents. The rare union will solidify the Whelan family’s political power and standing, but Liam couldn’t care less. When they come to America in search of this elusive soul mate, Liam falls for an Indian-American girl, Laxshmi Kapadia. The problem? She’s not an empath. Now he has to decide just what he’ll sacrifice to be with her.
Fighting Fate – The Joining of Souls Series Book 2:
Empath Liam Whelan is determined to protect the girl he loves, Laxshmi “Lucky” Kapadia, at all costs–even if it means breaking her heart to keep her alive. Stopping the joining cold means Liam’s life is in danger from the Soul Seekers and the ruthless Minister Gagliardi who now has designs on Lucky. Liam has no choice but to find the strength to fight his desires, fight the joining, and fight fate.
After the unthinkable happens, Lucky’s “hallucinations” work double-time. Heartbroken and plagued by doubts, she meets a man who gives her a mind-blowing explanation to her situation. Her apparent savior provides her with an escape from her hell: run away with him or return to her drab existence with unanswered questions and watch Liam move on with her heart in his hands. All Lucky ever craved was to be in control of her own fate, but when her only choices fight against her heart, can she find the strength to battle for what she wants?
Before going on to an excerpt from Fighting Fate, let’s all stop to look at this random T-shirt I found on the internet. It has a very important message that you all should remember.
Really, it’s not a bad T-shirt. I’d wear it. Anyways, jot down 11 before enjoying this excerpt from Fighting Fate.
Excerpt from Fighting Fate – The Joining of Souls Series Book 2!
Pain ripped through my heart, but I deserved it.
I stumbled into the house and collapsed onto my knees. The bookshelves in the front room seemed to be swaying. Dropping my palms to the rug, I hung on, trying to ride out the dizziness. The burning continued to surge through me from the charge that had blasted Lucky and me on the lawn. Her cries echoed in my ears, and I coughed and sputtered to catch my breath.
Jaysus Christ. I’d left her. I’d stopped our souls from joining. She was my empath soul mate, but how could I risk her life by letting the process continue? The lightning had been getting closer, and all I could do was to lie to her—tell her I was wrong about her being The One, break her heart to keep her alive. Damn me Da and his visions—they’d been making my life a misery for years by forcing me to go along with the search for her, and now that I’d found her, I couldn’t claim her, couldn’t join us together for eternity.
“Liam, darling! What happened? Where’s Laxshmi? Is she safe?” Mum rushed to me and reached down to help me up by the shoulders.
I batted her hands away. “Don’t!” The tingling from being in contact with Lucky was fading. I shut my eyes, trying to soak up its remnants. The electric shocks, I could do without, but the mild effect from where we’d touch would be my last link to her. Had I known it meant lightning would be what joined us together, I may never have gambled with her life.
Will I ever be able to touch her without hurting her or risking her life to be with her?
Da crouched down beside me. “Is Laxshmi safe, son? What’s happened with the joining?”
“Lucky’s safe enough. I lied to her—broke up with her before it…started.”
Da exhaled loudly, ran a hand through his mop of disheveled, salt-and-pepper hair, and began pacing. “Sweet mother of Jaysus,” he muttered.
Lucky and I had just parked in the driveway, and the growing need to be close to each other had been overwhelming the both of us. Lightning had flashed, triggering charges to be blasting through us—the joining had begun. I’d wanted to allow the soulmating to keep on its way, but the electrical surges that would’ve bound our souls together could’ve killed us. I’d jarred myself out of the trance-like compulsion to cling to her and broken up with her instead.
Her pleading and anguish had hit me as strong as a tsunami, pounding me back to shore, back to her, no matter how hard I’d fought to escape. I couldn’t breathe from the intensity. The hurt in her expressive eyes had stung like hundreds of jellyfish laying their tentacles all over me.
“You’re not The One, Lucky. I tried, but…”
“No! I don’t believe you. I trusted you. I can’t lose you, Liam. I–I need you. After everything you said…”
Even from two doors down, I sensed Lucky’s emotions as if they were roiling currents under an impossibly serene ocean surface—she must have been trying to hold it together in front of her mum. It was good we’d been keeping our relationship a secret. If not, Mrs. Kapadia would have barreled over here to flay me alive for hurting her daughter as I’d done.
I looked up at Mum. “How did you know?” She’d sent me an empathic warning as the joining had started, but I hadn’t wanted her interruption—not until I’d realized Lucky could die. After all the bleeding research we’d done, how could we not have known?
She sighed and pushed back loose blond curls that had escaped their restraints. “Your father told me after returning from Georgetown an hour ago. He said lightning may be involved to join your souls, but that’s all he knew. When I saw the flashes in the sky and sensed the intensity of Laxshmi’s emotions, I panicked. I had to warn you, darling.”
“Against me better judgment,” Da muttered, his bushy, gray eyebrows bunching together.
I shot to my feet to face off with him. “Is it feckin’ gone in the head, you are? We were being electrocuted out there, and I’ll not let her die for…for some daft vision.” My voice cracked. I brushed past the both of them to escape to my room.
Da grabbed my arm and swung me around. “How could you be throwing this gift away? Think about everything you could––”
“She’s mine to protect!”
“––be doing as joined soul mates. Never thought I’d see me own son giving up like a bloody dosser.”
I ripped my arm from his grasp and pointed a finger in his face. “Lazy, am I? All you’re after is making sure your bleedin’ vision about us is proven right.”
“That’s bollocks, as well you know.” Da threw his arms up in the air. “Why would Fate be putting you through the likes of this if it was only to let one of you die? What’s the sense in that? No pain, no gain. Aren’t the Americans always saying that?” He had the nerve to chuckle.
“Patrick Whelan!” Mum shot a hard stare in his direction. “What nonsense. That kind of charge could have killed them. You cannot assume they’ll be fine. I’ll not let him risk his life for this.”
I gave a snort. “It’s my bloody life to risk! Oh Christ!” A chest spasm doubled me over. I caught the edge of the coffee table before pitching to the ground. Lucky’s pain was coming at me like a change in air pressure, and my eardrums felt up to ninety and started popping like firecrackers.
My empath interpretations always came at me through water metaphors—but Lucky’s seemed to be based on air. When either of us experienced extreme emotions, like now, our interpretations crossed into a right mess.
The ringing in my ears was blocking out the other sounds, and the dizziness all but shoved me head first into the rug. Lucky’s pain was choking off my lungs and churned my stomach.
Mum’s lips moved, but I heard not a word. When the ringing lessened, Mum’s voice came out garbled, as if she were speaking from deep underwater. Mum and Da half dragged me to the sofa.
With a groan, I curled up, closing my eyes to the spinning. “It’s Lucky. She’s in her room.” My voice sounded muffled to me, even as the ringing was clearing away.
“How is it he’d be knowing such a thing, Moira?” Da asked. Mum explained how Lucky must have been hiding her emotions from her own mum, only to release them when she had some privacy.
A wave of nausea hit like a fist to my guts. Lucky’s feelings were rushing past my mental barriers with the force of a tornado. With my defenses weakening, would she sense my pain and regret? She knew nothing of our empath world and would think my emotions were just more of the hallucinations she’d been having—and I hadn’t been able to correct her. Until she broke through and officially became an empath, I couldn’t expose our world to her without risking the Elders finding out. Being she was an outsider, they’d scramble her neural pathways as a precaution, rendering her insane. As the governing body of our empath world, they had the authority, and even as a prince of the Empath House of O’Connor, I had no power to stop it.
Mum took my hand in hers. “Darling, can you not block her?”
I shook my head. “Ah hell.” Covering my mouth, I shot off the sofa and stumbled toward the toilet. Mum followed, but I locked the door after me. Leaning over the porcelain bowl, I heaved out an empty stomach for what felt like hours. Lucky’s words haunted me, keeping me company. “Liam, why are you pushing me away? I don’t understand. Why are you leaving me after everything you said?“
And don’t forget to enter the contest for a chance to win a ton of books by me, Shaila Patel, and more! To enter, you need to know that my favorite number is 11. Add up all the favorite numbers of the authors on the green team and you’ll have all the secret code to enter for the grand prize!
Ready to keep hunting! Head on over to Nicole Conway’s page for a chance to win more prizes
One more thing, before you head to Nicole’s page, enter my giveaway. Three copies of my book, Breaking the Rules of Revenge, up for grabs! 🙂
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