Published: April 15th, 2014 by Clean Teen Publishing
Word Count: 65,000
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Content Warning: Non-explicit murder
Recommended Age: 15+
Synopsis: “What if the one thing you never meant to hold on to, is the one thing you can’t let go of?”
Normally finding a hot guy in her bedroom wouldn’t irritate Zoe so badly, but finding her childhood friend Logan there is a big problem. Mostly because he’s dead.
As the only person he can make contact with, he convinces Zoe to help him put together the pieces surrounding his mysterious death so he can move on. Thrust into his world of ultra popular rich kids, Zoe is out of her element and caught in the cross-hairs of Logan’s suspicious ex-girlfriend and the friends he left behind, each of whom had a reason to want him dead. The deeper they dig to find the truth, the closer Zoe gets to a killer who would do anything to protect his secrets. And that’s just the start of her problems because Zoe is falling for a dead guy.
“Something interesting?” I ask, tossing the damp yellow towel across my chair.
He doesn’t turn to look at me.
“I’m just bored. I never realized how boring being dead could be.” He sighs deeply, his shoulders slumping as he exhales. “Still, could be worse.”
“Worse than being dead?”
He glances over his shoulder, his blue eyes piercing from across the room. “I could be dead and alone. At least I have you.”
I feel a blush creep up my neck and I try to shrug it off. “Yeah, I’m sure you’re just dying to hang out with me.” Then I force a weak chuckle.
“I mean it, Zoe.” He turns, walking toward me slowly, stopping just a few inches away. My heart skips in my chest. Even dead he’s the most beautiful boy I’ve ever seen. From the sharp slope of his nose to the curve of his jaw, from his broad shoulders to his dirty blonde hair is that perfect-messy that only movie stars seem to be able to achieve.
“If I didn’t have you to talk to—if you couldn’t see me—I’d have gone crazy days ago.” He reaches out and for a second, and idiotic, unrealistic heartbeat in time, I think he’s going to touch my face. But before he gets close he drops his hand to his side and the corners of his mouth turn up just a little.
At which point I realize that I’m standing there like a moron.
“Maybe I should start a business.” I fan out my hands in front of me. “Zoe Reed. Therapist to the dead.”
“You could have business cards with coffins on them.”
I snap my fingers, “And my tag line will be, Just because you’re dead doesn’t mean you’re not crazy.”
He laughs and it rolls through the room and across my skin like a cold breeze. I shudder and grab a light denim jacket from my closet.
“What’s first on the agenda today, General?”
He points to my phone. “First text Carlos about taking you shopping.”
I stand up tall and salute him. “Yes sir.”
As I’m texting Logan goes over and starts looking through my closet.
“Carlos has one thing right. You are entering a combat zone. You need a first day battle outfit.”
“Ooh, leather and stilettos?”
He looks over his shoulder, frowning.
“The point is to make you look less like…”
“Like you might rip someone in half just for saying hello.”
I put a hand on my hip. “So no leather then.”
“No. I’m thinking a dress. Something feminine.”
Oh sure. Pick the one thing I don’t own.
My phone vibrates. “Ok, Carlos is in, and judging by the amount of happy faces in this text, he’s a little excited.”
It vibrates again.
“He wants to take me to Potomac Mills, to the designer outlets.”
“And how shall I pay for those expensive garments? With my good looks and winning personality?”
He frowns. I take a deep breath and go to my dresser, pulling open the top drawer. Pushing aside the underwear I grab the small black wallet.
“I didn’t want to have to do this.” I open the billfold and remove the one lonely card from the slot.
“My debit card to my college fund.” I clutch it tightly. What little inheritance I’d received from my dad’s insurance policy went into his account. I’ve never used a penny of it, not until now. It always felt like blood money.
“Do you have enough?” he asks.
I glare at him.
“You owe me for this, Logan. Big time. When you get up there, you had better give me a damn good recommendation. I mean it.”
He grins, “Deal.”
Sherry D. Ficklin is a full time writer from Colorado where she lives with her husband, four kids, two dogs, and a fluctuating number of chickens and house guests. A former military brat, she loves to travel and meet new people. She can often be found browsing her local bookstore with a large white hot chocolate in one hand and a towering stack of books in the other. That is, unless she’s on deadline at which time she, like the Loch Ness monster, is only seen in blurry photographs.
She is the author of The Gods of Fate Trilogy now available from Dragonfly Publishing. Her previously self-published novel After Burn: Military Brats has been acquired by Harlequin and will be released in 2014 with a second book in that series to follow. Her newest YA steampunk novel, Extracted: The Lost Imperials book 1, co-written with Tyler H. Jolley is now available everywhere books are sold and her newest YA novel, Losing Logan, is due for release in 2014 from Clean Teen Publishing.
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