15 September 2016

Blitz & Giveaway: Dragonfly Nightmare (Once Upon A Secret, #1) by Erin Richards

Dragonfly Nightmare (Once Upon A Secret, #1) by Erin Richards.
Audience/Genre: Contemporary, Suspense, Young Adult.
Publication: September 12th 2016 by Midnight Muse Publishing.
To be a normal teenage girl.
To forget about the past.
To fall in love for the first time.
Is that too much to ask?

Sixteen-year-old Allie Bailey just wants a break—a break from her overly-protected life. And Dragonfly Meadows summer camp is the answer. A summer away from her parents in the California Sierras with her best friend is exactly what she needs.

But once at camp, Allie notices that things are a little off. Paid excursions are cancelled and staff is replaced with shady new people. When the camp’s founder goes “missing,” Allie starts to worry. Unable to let it rest due to her past, she starts to investigate, enlisting the help of Logan Montgomery, her best friend’s older and adorably geeky brother.

When hauntingly familiar flowers appear in Allie’s cabin, she’s not sure what to think—has her past caught up to her? Yet, after Allie stumbles across a murder conspiracy and chases down the truth, she becomes a target. Pushing through her paranoia and fear to find strength, it’s up to Allie to save herself and the campers from a deranged killer before it’s too late.

Murky light ghosted the darkening woods. Twigs crunched underfoot. Birds took flight, wings flapping into the twilight sky. Ice prickled at the base of my spine. A stick snapped to my right. I swung toward the sound, meeting more trees swaying in the breeze cutting through the woods. The sensation of someone stalking me joined the eerie crawl now a biting wave across my shoulders. Another twig snapped loud and disconcerting, booming in the dead silent woods. Where had all the animals and birds vanished to?
“Someone’s trailing us,” I whispered, peering out the corner of my eye, not wanting to give any indication we’d noticed the noise. Guards up, we increased our pace. Logan’s defensive moves repeated in my mind from start to finish. I fought to keep my arms at my sides rather than form the positions he’d taught me.
A shadowy shape streaked from one tree to another to our left.
“Who’s there?” Logan demanded.
I curled against his side and he took my hand in his. Sweaty palm or not, his hand comforted me as he sought his own degree of comfort.
No answer. No big surprise.
Something zoomed within a foot of our heads, a whisper of air in my ears. An arrow stuck out of a tree to my left. Another arrow whistled, piercing the next tree to my right. Unable to hide my fright, I yelped, staggering against Logan.
“Duck.” He pushed me down, covering me with his body. A third arrow whizzed by, well above our heads, and struck another tree. The archer deliberately missed in an apparent attempt to scare the bejeezus out of us. His aim hit the center of each tree trunk.
Trees and bushes rustled as the archer fled toward the lake. My instincts kicked in, and I bolted in the direction the mysterious archer took, jumping over rocks, scrabbling through lashing branches.
“No! Don’t chase.” Logan’s low-voiced shout stopped me cold.
One lesson in self-defense was not a death wish in the making. I halted so fast, I stumbled against a tree, scraping my upper arm against the jagged bark. Logan caught me against him before I took a header into a half-dead, thorny bush that could use my blood in a resurrection ritual. Steadying myself, I clung to his arms, willing my heart to dip below stroke zone.
He inspected my scraped skin, picking out bits of bark.
“Well, rock my world,” I said, attempting to lighten my anchor of fear.
“Let’s check out those arrows. Could’ve been a random hunter who wandered out of bounds.”
“No, Logan. It was a lunatic campground director who needs to visit a padded cell.” I stepped to the side. Part of me wanted to stay near him to feel his body heat forever. The other part needed to visit her own padded cell and beat my head against the walls.
“Taking it a bit far, don’t you think?” Determination fed his stride to the tree, and he wrenched out the first arrow by the time I reached him.
“Do I have to spell it out?” I retorted to his ass end, marveling at the strength hidden beneath his pale lankiness. “Dante Amadori’s hiding something. Freak flags are flying high. It’s not my paranoia.” I stamped my foot on a branch, pulverizing it into the ground. “It’s not my imagination. They’re not tricks campers are playing on other campers.” I kicked a sugar pinecone into the forest, launching my anger with it. “Don’t I have a right to be wary?” Say what? Why’d that come out? I vowed never to say anything like that to Logan, at least not until I called him on the carpet. “Never mind,” I added. “We’re reporting this to Martina and Dante.”
Logan stepped to the second tree and yanked the next arrow out. The muscles on his arm popped. I licked my lips. Who was this Logan Montgomery? Where had the scrawny geeky boy I used to know gone? Was he hiding behind the shell of the here and now geek?
He turned to me, holding the arrows in his fist, a scrubbed mask on his usually descriptive face. “You have a right to a ton of things.”

Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
Sterling silver dragonfly pendant; dragonfly rearview mirror car charm, and dragonfly notebook (US only)
$25 PayPal cash or iTunes gift card (winner’s choice) (INTL)
- ends Sept 22nd:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Erin Richards lives in sunny Northern California. She writes young adult fiction and adult romance, where you’ll typically find her characters in peril, whether based in reality or a contemporary fantasy setting. Magic, murder and mayhem are all in a days’ work! In her spare time, she enjoys reading, photography, and re-landscaping her backyard, even though she hates digging holes…unless she’s burying fictional bodies! Erin also confesses to a fascination with American muscle cars…and reality TV shows. Keep up with Erin’s latest news, exclusive content, and giveaways and subscribe to her Newsletter.

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