Pre-Order #Rellik AMAZON AMAZON UK BARNES & NOBLE KOBO ITUNES *Unedited teaser* *Subject to change* My eyes narrowed as I slowly reached forward so I wo Pre-Order #Rellik AMAZON AMAZON UK BARNES & NOBLE KOBO ITUNES *Unedited teaser* *Subject to change* My eyes narrowed as I slowly reached forward so I wouldn't startle her. I wrapped my hands around hers as she gripped the gun and pulled her toward me until the cold barrel pressed against my bare chest. “Do it,” I whispered. “Fucking do it. Tell the world some crazy asshole locked you in his hotel room and forced himself on you. Trust me, they’ll believe you. But that’s not what happened, Ella. The truth is, you came back to my hotel room willingly. You spread your legs for a fucking stranger without even knowing his God damn name. You practically fucking begged me for it. And now you’re the one holding a gun and calling me crazy?” Her grip loosened and I slid the weapon from her hand. I immediately grabbed her shoulders and flipped over so I was on top of her, pinning her arms next to her head. I adjusted her arms so I was able to grip her wrists in one hand above her head, my other hand against her neck, forcing her to look me in the eye. “You want to kill me, Ella? Huh? You want to fucking kill me?” My grip tightened as she struggled to turn her head, my finger tips on her jaw so as to not cut off her air supply. Our lips were practically touching and under different circumstances her heavy panting would have turned me on. “I didn’t pull the trigger.” “You fucking should have because if you ever pull a stunt like that again,” My voice trailed off as her eyes filled with tears. “Don’t. You don’t get to be sad. You don’t get to be a fucking victim. YOU PUT A FUCKING GUN TO MY HEART!” “I’m not a victim,” her eyes narrowed, tears running down into her hair. I bit back my rage and lowered my voice so my words wouldn’t fall on deaf ears. “That girl… that girl in the picture…” I squeezed my eyes closed momentarily trying to calm my racing thoughts. I never talked about Katie to anyone. Her memories were mine alone. “She was a victim. She was… everything to me and she is dead because of it.” I felt the column of her throat move under my palm as she swallowed hard, her heart racing under my fingers. “So if you want to play the victim with me, Ella, I will fucking make you one.” Pre-Order #Rellik AMAZON AMAZON UK BARNES & NOBLE KOBO ITUNES ...more
*UNEDITED AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE* Prologue “Mr. Thomas, we just need you to recount what happened that night.” The man in his cheap grey suit and ten
*UNEDITED AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE* Prologue “Mr. Thomas, we just need you to recount what happened that night.” The man in his cheap grey suit and ten dollar reading glasses leaned back against the edge of the desk and crossed his arms over his chest. I’m sure he thought the move was intimidating having me sit in front of him like a child about to be scolded. Honestly, it only made me feel sorry for him.
I cocked my head to the side but didn’t respond and he looked flustered for a moment as if he’d expected more of a reaction.
“She’s dead.” I glanced to my left, eyeing the woman in the equally cheap suit with her blonde hair pulled back in a bun. Her gaze met mine and she seemed momentarily taken aback by my words.
“You don’t seem bothered by that,” the woman spoke up, her voice wavering. She was new to this or not cut out for this line of work. Or maybe she was more affected by the death of a stranger than I was to someone I knew.
“Should I be?” I relaxed back into my seat, sinking lower in the metal folding chair to try to ease my discomfort.
“You were sleeping with her, weren’t you?” She asked, her eyebrows pulled together as if I’d personally offended her.
“We didn’t do much sleeping to be honest and you don’t need to care about someone to fuck them.”
“She was somebody’s daughter!” The woman snapped and took a step toward me but her partner held out his hand to stop her from getting closer. I suppose the game of good cop/bad cop had begun.
“I was the only one she was calling daddy when we were together,” I smirked as good cop lurched toward me, his hands circling my throat. ...more
While some feel the ending came out of nowhere, there are hints throughout the entire novel to what is happening. Here are a few examples. ***VIEW PER
While some feel the ending came out of nowhere, there are hints throughout the entire novel to what is happening. Here are a few examples. ***VIEW PERFECT LIE SPOILERS BELOW*** ------> (view spoiler)[ The twist at the end reveals that several of the main characters are dead.
- Lie tells Marie that Brock asked her not to go to school on the day of the shooting.
“Brock told me not to go to school that day.” I cleared my throat and dared a glance at Marie. Her pen was poised in her hand, but she stared intently at me, not writing. “I had a huge fight with my mom the night before. She found out that I had snuck out to see him.” I rolled my eyes as I peeled the light-pink nail polish from my thumbnail. “Anyway…” A lump formed in my throat, and I swallowed hard, trying to keep my tears at bay. “I couldn’t stay home, not when she was so mad at me.”
-During her flashbacks from that day she discovers it was Brock who was attacking the students.
Whoever was shooting was yelling over the noise, but I couldn’t make out what they were saying until a pair of old, worn black boots stepped next to Danny’s body. They kicked at his side, and he didn’t move. I struggled to hold my breath as Shelly cried cry hysterically. I put my hand over her mouth just as the gunman sunk to his knees and bent his head down. I stared into Brock’s stormy gray eyes as confusion and anger flashed across his face. “Bird, you weren’t supposed to be here.” His voice was eerily calm, like the way he used to talk to me in the shelter when I’d been upset. I squeezed Shelly tighter as my heart seized in my chest. The pain was excruciating. I opened my mouth, trying to find words, but Brock placed his finger over his lips to tell me to be quiet as he winked and stood up.
-Delilah finally remembers being accidentally shot by Brock as she tried to help those who bullied her. She doesn't survive.
“Brock…” My voice broke, and the wind was knocked from my lungs as I was pushed to the floor. A boy I didn’t know gave me an apologetic look as he stepped on my hand and ran for the doorway. Tears streamed down my face, as I tripped on the cold tile floor and gripped my stomach. “Bird! Bird, I’m so sorry.” He pulled me roughly into his chest as I gasped for air. His body shook, and I closed my eyes, lulled to sleep with the thudding rhythm of his hammering heart. “I love you so much, Bird.” A sob cut through his words. I tried to open my heavy eyes, so I could tell him it would be OK. It didn’t even hurt anymore. But I was unable to form any words.
Her death becomes more clear as she talks to Marie and begins to realize how things happened that day. He then turned the gun on himself and committed suicide.
as his arm rose, quivering as he pressed the handgun to his temple. “I’m so sorry.” His finger pressed the trigger, his eyes locked on mine. Bang. My body fell to back to the hard tile, sprawled over Brock’s legs in a twisted heap of broken hearts and unkeepable promises. The steady beating of his love faded into silence along with our future.
The 'jail' he is in is more of a self-appointed mental prison. If I continue his story, in the next book it will focus on him getting redemption and working to free himself from his guilt. This is my interpretation of what an afterlife may be like. Souls continuing on even if the body is dead. The characters maintain their original personalities; the good and the bad.
“You’re better off now.” He smiled sadly. “No one can hurt my Bird.” “You killed them. You killed us.” “I think about you every second of every single day.” His voice sounded wistful. We stared at each other for a long moment as a million things left unsaid passed between us. “That’s my punishment. I get to spend eternity knowing I can’t be with you.”
-Abel is also dead, from a separate incident as well as James (who we meet at a frat party).
“No. That night Becca cheated on me, I couldn’t cope. I lost it when I confronted James, and it cost me my life.” “The gun,” I whispered, as my eyes searched his. “Did you…” “No. James did. He shot me point blank.” His hand ran over the back of his head. “But he’s…Is he like us?” “Yeah. He hanged himself a week later.”
-Marie is alive and mentions being a necromancer (able to interact with the dead) early in the book.
“I told you about that psychic in confidence.” She gave me a hard look but was still smiling. “And she didn’t say I was a mind reader—although it would make my job a whole lot easier.” I closed the door behind me and made my way to the black leather chair across from her as she wrote something in the notebook that rested on her lap. “Right. You like to sleep with dead people,” I replied, straight faced. I loved poking fun at her. “Delilah! She said I was a necromancer in my past life. They talk to dead people.” She shook her head as she laughed from deep in her stomach, revealing the laugh lines around her mouth. “What you’re referring to is necrophilia and absolutely disgusting.”
- A plant dies while Lie is at a session with Marie.
My eyes focused on a small pink potted flower as I thought about Brock.
Later in the same session...
“You should consider some fake plants.” I nodded to the sad pink flower on the sill that strangely now appeared wilted and dead. Perhaps I’d been here longer than I’d thought. Maria laughed as her head shook slightly. “I’m not very good with living things. Better a flower than a house cat,” she joked.
- Dog at hot dog stand can see them, but owner pays no attention.
I smiled down at his rat terrier, which was tied to a leash wrapped around his arm. The dog bared his teeth and let out a low, angry growl. His owner sat oblivious as he stuffed his face. “Making friends?” Abel slid into the seat across from me with a grin. “Why do people bring their pets out in public when they clearly shouldn’t be around other people?” I snapped loudly, but the man ignored me. “You’re barking louder than the dog.” Abel chuckled and snapped his fingers, causing the dog to lie down on the concrete. “How did you do that?” “Bitches love me.” Abel winked as he slid my food over to me.
- No one who isn't dead or close to death interacts with them. They are only seen by those who are dead, or close to death. Trish's wild partying lifestyle has her on the edge of life.
I lay awake for the next hour, getting up to check on Trish every few minutes. I was terrified she was going to overdose or vomit all over the place. Her skin was pale, and she shivered like a puppy in the rain. I forced her to drink several glasses of water and eat a few slices of toast. She cursed and swatted at me, but I wasn’t about to let her destroy herself.
- At the coffee shop, the waitress only interacts with Trish.
“Here you go.” The barista dropped off our drinks, and I picked mine up and blew into the little drinking hole to cool it down a bit. She smiled at Trish, and I couldn’t help laugh as she acted as if she were the only one around. Her beauty wasn’t something that went unnoticed, unlike me.
- Lie's family tells her Uncle "she is dead to them' when he mentions she is with him.
“You should have heard the way they reacted when I said you’d come to stay with me.” He nodded as I slid a bowl in front of him and slipped a spoon into it. “They acted like I was crazy for having you stay with me. They said you were dead to them.” He shook his head, and a painful expression marred his face.
- Lie's reflection fades in the bathroom mirror.
I blinked as my reflection appeared to fade and blur before me. I rubbed the heel of my hand over my eye as I groaned. “I’m never drinking again,” I moaned, as I stuck my toothbrush in my mouth.
- Lie's Uncle Greg is on the verge of death when she comes to stay with him.
“When’s the last time you saw a doctor?” I asked, as I pulled open the fridge and searched for food. “Those quacks don’t know anything.” He laughed but soon had to clear his throat, fighting off a cough. “It’s just a cold.” I stood with a bowl of sliced fruit and looked over at him. “A cold? You’ve been sick for a year, and you look like death.” “Gee, thanks, Lie.” “You know what I mean.” I placed the fruit on the counter and turned back to the fridge to grab some yogurt. “If I’d knew you were this sick, I would have come to stay with you sooner.” “No one knew. I don’t need any of those assholes in my business.”
-Abel realizes after meeting Lie, that he wants to help those who have died or are close to death. He makes it his mission to walk Delilah through the process of discovery. They both continue to help others once she finds out the truth.
“There’s someone here we’re supposed to meet.” I looked at him confused, but I understood when he pulled open the door to the office. “Jesus,” I mumbled, as I took in the scene. There was blood, black and dried, in splatters across the walls. “No, not Jesus. This is Brandon. He was robbed a few hours ago.” My body froze, and I pulled back against Abel’s grip. “Be cool, Kettle. What am I saying? Be like me, Kettle.” “Oh…you got jokes?” I said. “You’re seriously joking right now?” “You’re going to scare our new friend.” He plastered a smile on his face, and his voice rose. “You all right, sir?” “Help,” a faint voice mumbled from behind the desk. I glanced at Abel before hurrying to the counter and bending over the edge to look down at a very badly injured Brandon. “Is he…?” I asked, glancing back at Abel. He shook his head, and I let out a breath I didn’t realize I’d been holding. “He would be if we hadn’t stopped here.” Abel grabbed the phone on the counter and picked it up. “It’s dead.” He started to laugh but cleared his throat as I glared at him. “All right. That was lame.” He pulled his cell from his pocket and dialed the police as I slipped around the counter and knelt next to the hotel owner. “You’re going to be OK.” I tried to soothe him. His bloodied hand wrapped around my arm. “Are you an angel?” Abel snorted, and I glared up at him. “No. We’re here to help you.” “Thank God,” he murmured, and Abel rolled his eyes. “Actually, my name is Abel, and this is Kettle,” he began, but I interrupted. “Actually, my name is Delilah. You’re going to be just fine. You’re real lucky we stopped in here.” I brushed his graying hair from his forehead. “It’s a miracle. Bless you. Bless you.” Just when I thought Abel was going to die—a second time, for his not getting the credit for his miraculous save—we heard sirens in the distance, and I couldn’t hold back the smile that spread over my face.
There are many other clues. These are just a few examples. There is no Heaven or Hell in this novel. The characters are flawed, even after death. They are each struggling to overcome the mistakes and right things from their pasts. (hide spoiler)] <------
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**Unedited and subject to change** “My name is Willow,” my voice shook as I spoke, my untrimmed nails digging into the flesh of my upper arm as I scrat
**Unedited and subject to change** “My name is Willow,” my voice shook as I spoke, my untrimmed nails digging into the flesh of my upper arm as I scratched myself until I felt the warmth of blood. The pain was calming to my thoughts, bringing me back to this moment and allowing me to stay present.
“We both know that isn’t your name, Holly.” His tone was too confident and it caused me to grind my teeth. He wasn’t listening. He was asking me questions but he refused to listen. He wouldn’t last long where I had been. Most didn’t. I was different.
“My name is Willow.”
“Okay,” he said as he gestured with his hands before fumbling again with his pen, clicking and unclicking it. My mind could only focus on that noise, the sound reminiscent of the ticking of his watch. “Willow?” He said as if testing the waters. My eyes snapped to his and my heart began to calm as I cleared my throat. “Why would you like me to call you Willow?”
“Because that’s who I am now.” Because I can be bent to your will and never break. My voice was steady now and I spoke with confidence as I repeated his words....more
When I moved to Hollow Point, Pennsylvania I had a plan. I would do whatever it takes to climb my way to the top of the social ladder, not caring who When I moved to Hollow Point, Pennsylvania I had a plan. I would do whatever it takes to climb my way to the top of the social ladder, not caring who I had to step on to get to the top. The girl who started that rumor about your eating disorder? That was me. The girl who made out with your boyfriend? Me again. The girl you don’t ever want to cross? You’re looking at her, bitch....more