THE WORLD OF KAROV
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Adam and Alec look like identical twins, but their personalities are as different as possible. Adam is gentle and kind, whereas Alec is the essence of nightmares. Always jealous of his twin, Alec does everything he can to destroy his brother’s happiness, including kidnapping Adam’s fiancée on their wedding day and disappearing with her deep into the Canadian mountains. Adam searches for them for months, but he never finds them. Just when Adam is at his most grief-stricken point, a stranger appears and offers him a chance for a new life in a land filled with magic, gems, and powers unimaginable; a world mysteriously led by a special tribe of children who have hidden themselves away from a great evil that is seeking to destroy them. Adam takes the chance and goes with the stranger, but his past is never far from his mind. Eventually, reality comes back to haunt Adam, resulting in a final showdown with his brother…. and this time, only one will win.
Excerpt from World of Karov:
“Adam, do you love me?”
I turned on my side towards the petulant voice and stared into absolute perfection. Leaning over on the soft grass, I pushed aside a wayward strand of strawberry curls that were resting on a perfect porcelain cheek, and I planted a gentle kiss on the sweetest of lips. I grinned, loving when her pout turned into a smile so radiant it took my breath away. “You know I love you more than life itself.”
She threw a clump of grass in my face. “Liar.” But she smiled and I knew she believed me.
Arianna was the one bright spot in a life riddled by sorrow, until now. It was as if the sun had finally come out after years of rain and now every day was perfect.
I had finally left home at the age of fifteen after a particularly bad episode with my father, which left me with a broken arm. I remember escaping into the forest, as my mother screamed and cried, while my father just laughed. It was storming outside and into the downpour I ran, clutching my arm and trying to ignore the pain. I cried as I never cried before and fled blindly, finally seeking shelter at the one room schoolhouse I attended as a child.
Mrs. Lacey, the schoolmaster, found me the next morning huddled in the corner. She coaxed me to the cottage she shared with her husband and two young children and sent Mr. Lacey to get the town doctor. He set my arm and treated my wounds with tree bark and roots, then splinted it. No one asked how this had happened. No one asked who did this to me, though everyone knew. They kept silent. That was the way in my town. People would talk, but they seldom got involved.
Still, Mrs. Lacey took pity on me and I stayed with her and her family for three weeks, sleeping on a fresh bed of hay in their barn while my arm mended. During that time, no one from my family came looking for me; not even my mother. I made a decision then and there that I would never return home again and told this to Mr. and Mrs. Lacey. I remember the looks on their faces, a mixture of pity that it had finally come to this, but a profound relief and happiness that I would finally be safe. They even helped me find a place to live.
Mrs. Lacey’s father was Mr. Mooney, the storekeeper who owned the general store. He normally rented out the room above the shop for travelers, but he only charged me a pittance for the rent as long as I swept down the floors each evening. I guess word of my plight got around fast because the local blacksmith, Mr. Hopper, suddenly needed help during the day and so, within four weeks of leaving my home, I had a job and a place to live.
In the beginning, they were long, backbreaking days, but I loved every single minute of them. The constant state of panic I usually felt in my gut each day was starting to leave and suddenly I found my smile again. I had nearly forgotten what it was like to laugh. No longer was I afraid from the moment I woke up in the morning that I would receive a beating before breakfast or have to endure the mad psychotics and rantings of my brother, wondering what evil he was going to do to me next. No longer would I meet my mother’s eyes and see her shame stamped there. For the first time in my life, I was free.
And then Arianna came into the shop one day to pick up a package for her mother. In that defining moment, as an angel with strawberry blond curls smiled at me, I knew I had finally escaped.
I saw my future and my destiny.
Elyse Salpeter is the author of FLYING TO THE LIGHT, a young adult thriller featuring a young deaf boy with a unique take on the afterlife. The sequel, FLYING TO THE FIRE is scheduled for release in March, 2013. She lives on Long Island, NY with her husband and eleven-year-old twins. An advertising sales rep by day, she spends her spare time writing a food blog called “Battle Yum” with a high school friend, does boot camp training with marines, and figures out ways to move the characters constantly running through her head onto paper.
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