Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Raine Cooper has enough on her plate dealing with her father’s disappearance, her mother’s erratic behavior and the possibility of her boyfriend relocating. The last thing she needs is Torin St. James—a mysterious new neighbor with a wicked smile and uncanny way of reading her.
Raine is drawn to Torin’s dark sexiness against her better judgment, until he saves her life with weird marks and she realizes he is different. But by healing her, Torin changes something inside Raine. Now she can’t stop thinking about him. Half the time, she’s not sure whether to fall into his arms or run.Scared, she sets out to find out what Torin is. But the closer she gets to the truth the more she uncovers something sinister about Torin. What Torin is goes back to an ancient mythology and Raine is somehow part of it. Not only is she and her friends in danger, she must choose a side, but the wrong choice will cost Raine her life. -
Excerpt:The ding of the doorbell resounded in the house before I finished my assignment. I grinned. Must be Eirik, my unofficial boyfriend. I jumped up, raced to the door, and yanked it open.
“About time you got he…”
I took a step back, my pulse leaping. In one sweeping glance, I took in the stranger’s shaggy black hair, piercing Pacific-blue eyes under arched eyebrows, black leather jacket, and hip-hugging jeans. Either fate had conjured the poster boy of all my fantasies and deposited him on my doorstep or I was dreaming.
I closed my eyes tight and then opened them again.
He was still there, the only thing missing was a bow or a note with my name pinned to his forehead. Irrationally, I wondered how it would feel to run my fingers through his hair. It was luxurious and so long it brushed the collar of his jacket. His lips moved, and I realized he was speaking.
“What?” I asked. The single word came out in two syllables, and I cringed. Lame, Raine.
“I asked if you’d seen Eirik Seville,” the stranger said impatiently in a deep, commanding voice as though he was used to giving orders, “and you shook your head. Does that mean you didn’t understand what I said, don’t know him, or don’t know where he is?”
“I, uh, the third one.” Could I be any lamer? Worse, warmth crept up my face. “I mean, I don’t know where he is,” I said in a squeaky voice.
“He said he would be at the house of…” he pulled out a piece of paper from the back of his biker glove, the fingerless kind, and read, “Raine Cooper.”
“That’s me. Lorraine Cooper, but everyone calls me Raine. You know, rain with a silent E,” I said even though he didn’t ask for an explanation. I tended to blabber when nervous. “Yeah, well, Eirik’s not here.”
“When do you expect him? Or should I ask when does he usually get here, Raine with an E?” the guy asked.
I bristled, not liking his mocking tone or the way he spoke slowly as though I was a dimwit. “He doesn’t always come here after school, you know. You could try his house or text him.”
Mr. Hot-but-arrogant shrugged. “If I wanted to use modern technology I would, but I’d rather not. Could you do me a favor?”
Use modern technology? Which cave did he crawl from? He spoke with a trace of an accent that had a familiar lilt. British or Aussie? I could never tell the difference.
He sighed. “You’re shaking your head again. Did my question confuse you? Am I talking too fast, too slow, or is it me? I’ve been told my presence tends to, uh, throw people off.”
I crossed my arms, lifted my chin, and stared down my nose at him. I was usually the calm one among my friends, the peacemaker, but this guy was seriously pushing my buttons with his arrogance. “No.”
His eyebrows rose and met the lock of hair falling over his forehead. “No to what?”
“No, you didn’t confuse me. And no, I won’t do you a favor.”
He rolled his eyes, plucked wraparound sunglasses from the breast pocket of his jacket, and slipped them on before turning to leave.
Yeah, good riddance. To copy Cora’s favorite saying, ‘he just lost hotness points’.
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