Today I'm excited to be a part of the official tour for Leah Bobet's new YA novel,
AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES
This book, with it's promise of war, family secrets, and monsters, sounds so amazing! Read below for an exclusive excerpt and be sure to enter the giveaway below to win one of three gorgeous finished copies!
by Leah Bobet
♦publisher: Clarion Books
♦hardcover: 400 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
A bird called, harsh and frightened, and I dared open my eyes. Dawn light pried through my thick-paned window. The sky above it was as blue and fine as my faded bedroom walls. The thunder rattled weaker, wet leaves on glass. My heart wouldn’t stop its frightened stutter. “He’s dead,” I muttered sternly, padded across the green rag rug and opened the window.
The yard stretched before me, brown and empty; the air smelled of woodsmoke and frost. I shoved my head into the chilly dawn outside, and the bare branches of trees, the barns, the gray river unscrolled sleepily into the sky. From below, from the leaf-clogged gutters, something let out a whimpered cheep. I reached down—
—and a small shape exploded in a fury of wings.
It staggered and shrieked right back at me, a harsh, uncertain caw. Battered brown wings struggled for purchase on the sill; tiny claws scrabbled closer. I grabbed the window handles and jerked them down between us. The thin cry muffled as wood and glass slammed down—and then it rose to a scream. A dark smear fluttered between the thick panes and the white sill: the wing. It was nothing more than a stunned bird, and I’d just crushed its wing.
“Oh,” I breathed, and brushed river stones and hair clips messily off the sill. Bile stung my throat: You’ve killed it. It can’t even fight back. I shoved the window upward, fast, hands clutched under the bottom frame.
The wing slapped my hand so hard that everything stopped.
“Ow!” I cradled the hand close to my chest. Furious, ragged squawks trailed me back into the bedroom. “Sorry,” I whispered over and over, an exhausted litany of sorry that beat in time with my throbbing hand. The wing had left a red spot, as red as a bug-bite burn. I brushed it with idle fingernails.
They caught on something. Hard.
The thinnest edge of a cobweb was growing out of my left hand. It seared my window frame brown where it stuck, and the line it burned led straight to the bird’s desperate talons. I’d been too rattled, too guilty to see it: those eight black sparrow-nails were sticky-coated with web.
It wasn’t a bird. It was a Twisted Thing—one of the Wicked God Southward’s pet monsters.
* * * * *
Leah Bobet is a bookseller, publisher, and editor as well as a Pushcart-Prize nominated author.
She lives in Toronto. www.leahbobet.com
Three finished copies of An Inheritance of Ashes are being given away tour-wide!
(US mailing address only)
(US mailing address only)