Title: The Conduit
Author: Stacey Rourke
Pages: 212 on Amazon Kindle
Price: Perma Free
Genre: YA / Paranormal
THE CONDUIT BLURB / DESCRIPTION
Gryphon Series Book 1
All 18-year-old Celeste Garrett wants is to head off to college and make those fun, yet ill-advised, choices college kids are known for. And maybe to spend some time with the hot cameraman she just met. Instead, because of a pact her ancestors made in the 17th century with a mythical creature, she has to save the world.
While normal kids are slamming energy drinks and cramming for exams, Celeste will get her adrenaline rush fighting a fire breathing dragon. She wants to meet friends in the quad to exchange lecture notes, but first she must exchange blows with a shapeshifting demon on the rooftop. Life isn’t always fair for a superhero, but at least she doesn’t have to do it alone. With her brother and sister as sidekicks, they alternate between saving lives and getting on each others’ nerves. Together the trio encounters unspeakable odds, mystical forces and comes face-to-face with an image that will haunt them forever—their grandmother in a leopard print bikini.
“Okay, little side note here. If a psychopathic killer asks if you want to see a trick, say no. That’s the smart thing to do. I, on the other hand, responded, ‘Bring it’.”
-excerpt from THE CONDUIT
At certain moments in life reflection is mandatory. I found being squeezed in the scaly claw of a three story dragon to be one of them. As he shook me like an uncooperative toy, my rattled brain wondered how life had led me here. Could I have done anything differently to maybe not die horribly at the hands of Mr. Big-Green-and-Ugly?
But as my constricted lungs burned and ached for even a whisper of a breath, I knew there was no way I could’ve avoided this. No matter where I went. No matter what I did. They would’ve found me. It was inevitable.
A searing pain in my side signaled that my recently mended rib had cracked again. I opened my mouth to scream but could manage no sound. My head wobbled so hard it felt like it might snap off my neck. Black spots danced before my eyes. With them came flashes from a life that wasn’t mine.
With tentative steps the girl walks through the smoldering, charred remains of her tiny village. Her bare feet are burned and blackened, but she doesn’t waver. She lays a delicate hand on the shoulder of the half–eagle/half–lion creature that saved them all. Well…most of them. Some of the blood spilled in this emerald Ireland valley had been fatal.
His rants turned into nothing more than a ringing in my ears. One by one, my senses gave up. They retreated into the dark abyss and waited for me to join them there.
A look of steely determination overcame the girl’s dainty features. “You didn’t let us stand alone, and I will not let you.”
The Gryphon snapped his beak and shook his enormous head. “No. This war will rage on long after your mortal life has ended. I have foreseen it.”
“Then my heirs shall take up the cause as well!” She lifted her soot–covered nightgown enough to allow herself the movement needed to go down on one knee. Her glorious, ivory wings stretched out wide behind her as she pressed her fist over her heart. “It is my pledge to you that the O’Garren family will join you in this crusade. My people will be your warriors until we find victory or death.”
The pain lessened. Peace replaced it. That pledge, made centuries ago, is what led me here. If the break-ins hadn’t happened. If I had stayed in Michigan. I’d still find myself here, losing my grip on whatever tied my spirit to this world. Of course, now I knew that those break-ins were them looking for me. And they followed me to Gainesboro. As the last of my strength and energy drained from my body, the thought of my new home made me smile.
Gainesboro, Tennessee. That’s where it all happened. That’s where I learned the truth. That’s where everything changed. That’s where my destiny found me. And now, it’s where I would die.
RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013
Readers’ Favorite Silver Medal Winner for Crane 2015
Stacey Rourke is the author of the award winning YA Gryphon Series, the chillingly suspenseful Legends Saga, and the romantic comedy Adapted for Film. She lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction, and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head.