Untreed Reads has released Catherine Stovall’s Stolen: Requiem for Humanity: Book 1 in digital editions for only $2.99.
Description: Jenda and Soborgne are best friends and everything they do, they do together. Unfortunately, this time the girls may be joined at the hip in a far more horrible way: by death.
The girls are kidnapped and held captive by Belle and Matteo, two vampires with a plan. Belle, a sociopath in life and death, is searching for an heir to her reign as the only vampire to hold the secret to surviving the sun. Matteo is a lost soul who would give anything to be loved and to see the light of day. As the four characters’ worlds collide, blood is spilled, lives are lost, and rules are broken.
Disappointment in love and life bring out the worst in humans but, with vampires, it leads to a chilling tale of romance and terror.
Excerpt: Jenda’s eyes were unfocused from the quick change of light and still blurry from tears. She ran the back of her hand over her eyes to clear her vision; she blinked furiously from the sting of salt and sand. As she opened her eyes, his presence suddenly filled all her senses.
The intruder stood inches from her, his black eyes boring into her as if the entire world depended on this very moment in time. He stood almost a full foot taller than Jenda. His broad shoulders tapered down to a trim waist. He appeared to be well muscled but not overly large. He was almost handsome except that his presence sent tremors of pure undiluted terror screaming to every brain cell and nerve ending inside her. All of her senses told her to wake up, to run, and to escape as quickly as she could.
Jenda did not turn or run. She stood her ground, focused on the object that the intruder stood holding between his thumb and forefinger. There in his large pale hand hung a crystal from her tree. Her mind went wild with the outrage she felt at the idea of this invader, this intruder touching something so personal to her.
Jenda seethed. Before she could stop herself, she reached to rip the trinket away. As she grasped the crystal, she saw the purple light begin to fill it. She gasped and then his hand closed around her tiny wrist. The cold shock of steely flesh sent shivers through her. She paused, thrown off guard by the sensation of having her entire hand plunged into ice. Then her heart skittered and she felt as if the world were spinning too fast and that she may fall. Trying to pull away from that frozen iron grasp, Jenda felt terror and heard her mind scream for her to run before she died.
Pulling with all her might to free herself from his grip, Jenda looked up into the intruder’s face. The beauty of it surprised her even as he held her fighting, kicking, and screaming. His face seemed serene and his mouth no longer held the sardonic smile. His lips were full and sensuous. There was not a single line or crease in his translucent skin. He showed no irritation or ill will despite Jenda’s ongoing struggle to escape. He would have been Orlando Bloom hot if it were not for the fact that his eyes looked like two giant glass buttons. The difference between pupil and iris was so slight there was almost no end to the blackness. There was only the tightness of the flesh around his eyes and mouth that showed there was any sort of physical exertion on his part.
Then in a moment of pure horror, the intruder smiled. It was not the sardonic smirk from before. It was a large predatory showing of teeth. In a fit of hysteria, Jenda thought of how much he reminded her of the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland. A high-pitched frenzied laugh escaped Jenda’s mouth and echoed into the silence of the canyon. It was the kind of laugh you only heard in the movies or in real asylums.
Almost as soon as the thought of the cat crossed Jenda’s mind and before the echo of her laugh faded eerily in the silence, the intruder chuckled. The sound of that dry mocking noise nearly put Jenda over the edge. No, he was not the Cheshire Cat. This was the big bad wolf in all his menacing glory and she was his for the taking.
You can purchase this one directly from the publisher here: Stolen: Requiem for Humanity: Book 1