Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Four Days of Garr! Day FOUR!

Today is the final day of the Four Days of Garr *sighs* I am truly sad to see it end.  It will be your last chance to enter the rafflecopter to win signed paperbacks, and also the last review *sobs*
Today is the review for:
Touching Evil

(The Leila Marx Novels)

By Amber Garr


                                                                    With one touch, Leila can see it all.
 
Leila Marx is trying to put her life back together after her fiancé is murdered. When Detective Garrick Pearson enlists her help with a difficult case, she is thankful for the distraction and the opportunity to use her talents as a touch clairvoyant. Leila and Garrick delve into the mystery behind a series of missing teenage girls and mummified corpses while discovering their own growing attraction to each other.
 
Conner Hoffman is an intriguing lawyer and striking half-demon who enters Leila’s life unexpectedly. Although her visions are terrifying, she is fascinated by his charm and his legacy. When it becomes evident that the murders are linked to a paranormal event, Conner introduces Leila to a world unbeknownst to ordinary society. She suddenly finds herself immersed in supernatural politics, sorcery, and danger as she becomes the killer’s next target.
 
Staying alive will mean relying on friends, accepting the unbelievable, and trusting in her heart again.
 
Hmm... what can I say about Touching Evil? It's quite simple really....
I WANT MORE LEILA MARX!!!!
 
Seriously, this book took me completely by surprise.  At first, I was like, 'woot woot! Awesome psychological thriller with a psychic!', but then, as the story progressed and the plot thickened it became 'HELL F*CKING YES! THIS IS AWWWWWWESOME!'
 
I literally devoured Touching Evil, totally consumed with the story and the characters. The waves of b*tch slapping plots kept me continually on my toes.
And the bantering between the characters.  Bestill my beating heart, even during the most dire of circumstances, Leila's witicism and sarcasm had me wanting to laugh at the same time that my eyes were bulging from the intensity of the situations that the characters were in.
 
I'm rarely ever stunned speechless, and am literally prying the words form my mind.
I'm still flabbergasted, not really knowing what to say except for I LOVE IT! I LOVE IT! I LOVE IT!
Hurry up and write more Amber! I'm dying here!
 
Read it, my wicked readers, you won't be disappointed ;)
 
And now, some lovely excerpts.

Excerpt 1
What does one wear when they commit the first felony of their life? I probably spent two hours going through my closest trying to find something criminal. It had to be black. Yes, definitely black. I finally settled on a turtleneck, spandex workout pants, and the only pair of black sneakers I’d ever owned. They were left over from my waitressing days and I was pleasantly surprised to see that they were still in good shape, even if they did smell a little like grease.

I just finished pulling my hair back into a low bun, like spy girls do in the movies, when the doorbell rang. Conner was here and my heart fluttered instantly. Last night had been a lot of fun and I really enjoyed my evening with Garrick, but this was the first time any man had been to my house who wasn’t a part of the police force since Russ was killed. This was also the first time I’d ever had a half demon in the house, at least as far as I knew. After another quick glance in the mirror, I bounced over to the door.

And as soon as I opened it I realized how much of a dork I must have looked like.

There was Conner, in a regular pair of jeans and a college sweatshirt doing all that he could not to laugh at me. I glared up at him.

“What? No one told me what to wear so I had to improvise.” He started laughing but then choked it back down when I tried to close the door on him. His foot shot out and blocked my attempt.

“I’m sorry. You look good. Really.” He smiled fully at me and then bowed his head as he put his hands together in a prayer-like position. “May I have permission to enter my ninja warrior princess?” 

I could see his shoulders shake with amusement again and I refused to be embarrassed. With an exaggerated sigh, I walked back into my bedroom, leaving Conner to let himself in. I decided that he should wallow in uncomfortable silence for a while, although when I came back into the living room and saw him flipping through some of my illustrations, I realized he was unfazed.

“These are really good. You’re quite talented.” I stood there, leaning against the wall for a few seconds trying to judge if he was being serious or not. Just as I started to give him the benefit of the doubt, he arched an eyebrow my way and said, “A much better artist than fashionista.”

I threw the sweatshirt I had in my hands at him and stomped over to the kitchen. His laugh consumed the room and I was surprised to find a smile on my face as I opened the refrigerator.

“Should we take snacks?” I asked. We were going to drive to a spot close to the house and wait until it was clear. I’d been told that it might take several hours and I didn’t want the cambion getting hungry while we waited.

“Sure, if you want. Maybe some water would be good.” It was obvious that he enjoyed my lack of stake-out abilities. 

I grabbed one of my reusable grocery bags and filled it up with water, crackers, and Twizzlers. All of the essentials. I briefly considered grabbing a bottle of wine to control my anxiety, but decided against it in the end.

“So, are we ready to go?” I asked as I hoisted the bag on my shoulder and grabbed the sweatshirt back. He studied me for a moment and then pulled an object from his back pocket.

“Not until you put this on,” he said as he tossed something small and black at me. It was a ski mask, one of those ones that covered everything except for your eyes. I pulled it over my head and batted my lashes.

“Am I ready now?”

He laughed and took the snack bag off my shoulder. “Yes, Leila. I think you’re ready for a life of crime.” 

 

 Excerpt 2

“This conversation is over.” The last of my drink splashed on the table when I slammed down the glass. I watched with annoyance as my fiancé rubbed his hands through his dark hair and rolled back his head.

“Leila, we have to talk about this. I can’t stall my mother any longer.”

“Just tell her no,” I snapped.

“Please don’t be like this. You know I can’t do that.” He leaned forward and dabbed at the liquid sitting between us like neutral territory. “I don’t understand what the big deal is anyway.”

“And that is why I’m finished with this conversation.” Sitting back in my chair, I looked around the darkened bar only to find that we had an audience. I must have said that last quip a bit loud.

Russ sighed and imitated my defensive posture. “I’m only getting married once so I wish you would indulge her one request.”

One request? Was he serious? I loved his family, yet when it came to planning my wedding, I had to draw the line somewhere. This hadn’t been her only request and I’d been willing to give in up to this point. But I wasn’t going to exchange my dress because it wasn’t fancy enough for her friends, or whatever ridiculous reason she’d come up with this time. I wasn’t going to do it.

Russ must have seen the resolution in my face because he pushed back in his chair and stood with calculated theatrics. “I’ll see you at home,” he mumbled, then downed the rest of his drink.

“Where are you going?” I asked. We didn’t usually fight, but this circular discussion was weeks old. I hated how wedding planning disrupted the normal bliss of our relationship.

“To work. I’ll be home in a few hours.”

He squeezed around the small table, avoiding my touch. Normally that would have bothered me, but tonight I was glad I didn’t have to deal with his plethora of emotions on top of mine. Besides, I was already pretty sure I knew what he felt.

Thunder crashed outside and the skies opened up like a waterfall. Great. Now I had to find a cab in the rain. A nearby couple whispered to one another and then looked over at me. No doubt they were applauding themselves for not having a fight in public.

I gave them a quick glance and stood to begin my journey home to an empty house. As I did, I noticed Russ’ jacket lying on the floor in the corner by his chair. He’d want it back, so I reached forward to grab it.

Images filled my mind as I ran in the rain. My burning feet sent shards of pain through my body and my dress clung to me in places it shouldn’t. The quiet street shimmered with lights so dim they appeared to lose the battle with the storm. Dark shadows glistened on the asphalt hinting at the dangers prowling through the night.

I ran but felt like I couldn’t gain any ground.

Screaming for him with each step I took, I barely noticed my shoes had stayed behind with the serenity of my other life. The puddles grew, the murky water now swallowing my feet up to my ankles. There! That noise. Was that a gun shot?

 

 Excerpt 3

 

Elise and Gallus marched back into the room. An undersized old-fashioned doctor’s bag dangled in Elise’s hands. Made of aged leather, it had two small handles and a tension opening with a gold clasp. I felt pretty sure they didn’t make those anymore, so I wondered if this was a family heirloom. She dropped it onto the table on the opposite end from King.

“Okay. I don’t know if this is going to work, but perhaps with all of the magic and supernaturals in here tonight, we’ll get lucky.” Her voice had taken on a professional tone and I became instantly drawn into her show. “Just let me get set up.”

The bag opened with a snap and she began to pull out several objects. The first was a candle wrapped in black velvet. The large red cylinder must have consumed most of the space in the bag. She smoothed the velvet piece out on the table and placed the candle in the center directly in front of her. Next, she pulled out some type of dried herb that may have been sage, but really it could have been anything- I was no expert. Surprisingly, the only other object she collected was a lighter and after placing the bag on the floor, she lit the candle and the dried plant material.

Taking a deep breath in, she closed her eyes. I found myself doing the same although I couldn’t keep them closed for very long in fear that I would miss my first séance ever. She stayed in this trancelike stage for several minutes. Slowly breathing in and out, hardly moving at all. When she began to speak, it was quickly evident to me that she wasn’t talking to anyone in the room.

“Thank you for coming.” Pause. “Yes, I need your guidance tonight.” She shook her head. “Not going to happen no matter how many times you ask.”

The one-way conversation proved difficult to follow, but I think we understood well enough. Apparently she was asking someone for help. I remember she spoke about the spirit guides in the cemetery, so I assumed that one of them was the object of her exchange.

“No, I don’t have a name,” she explained to the empty space above the table.

“Miranda Jefferson,” Terez interrupted. Elise looked over sharply at her and then gave a curt nod.

“You heard her. Miranda Jefferson. Buried at Louden Cemetery, section 15, plot 84.” There was another pregnant pause. “No I don’t have a date.” But she looked questionably at Terez who shook her head. “No. No date of death.”

Another pause. Elise rolled her eyes in frustration. “Can you help me or not?” She quickly turned to look behind Gallus who stood at her side. “George,” she said in disgust. “I’m not having this conversation again. You’re dead, he’s not. End of discussion.”

Gallus looked over his shoulders uneasily as Elise continued arguing with the spirit. “He’s not dead dead.” She faced the candle again and snapped, “Well, at least he has a body.”

 Last chance for the giveaway!
 
 

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