Friday, February 24, 2012

Excerpt & Giveaway (US Only) for By A Thread by Jennifer Estep

Today I am lucky enough to have an excerpt from the newest book in the Elemental Assassin series by Jennifer Estep. There is also a giveaway of the book (US Only, sorry!) at the end of the excerpt. I hope you enjoy the excerpt as much as I do!  

Title: By A Thread
Author Jennifer Estep
Series: Elemental Assassin #6
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Pocket Books
Number of Pages: 384
Realease Date: Feb 28th

When killing people is your job, there’s no such thing as a vacation. Then again, how often does an assassin live long enough to enjoy her retirement? In this line of work, you either get lucky or you get dead. And since I destroyed my nemesis Mab Monroe a few weeks ago, all of Ashland’s lowlifes are gunning to make a name for themselves by taking out the lethal Spider—me, Gin Blanco. So I’m leaving behind my beloved barbecue joint and heading south with my baby sister, Bria, to cool my heels in a swanky beach town. Call it a weekend of fun in the sun. But when a powerful vampire with deadly elemental magic threatens an old friend of Bria’s, it looks like I’ll have to dig my silverstone knives out of my suitcase after all. Complicating matters further is the reappearance of Detective Donovan Caine, my old lover. But Donovan is the least of my problems. Because this time, the danger is hot on my trail, and not even my elemental Ice and Stone magic may be enough to save me from getting buried in the sand—permanently.

Release Date: February 28, 2012

“You stupid, bitch,” he growled. “Don’t you know who we work for? Not that it matters now because I’m going to cut you to pieces for messing with Trent.”
I shook my sleeve, and a silverstone knife slid into my left hand. The weapon was one of five that I normally carried on me. Two up my sleeves, two in the sides of my boots, one in the small of my back. Since we were on vacation and I was wearing sneakers, I’d left the two in my boots in my suitcase at the hotel. But the other three knives were locked and loaded in their appropriate slots, so to speak, even though I knew it would take only one to deal with the likes of Pete Procter.
“Did you say cut you? Why, I’d be happy to oblige,” I drawled again.
It was one thing to try to keep the violence to a minimum, but I wasn’t about to let some lowlife hood come at me with a broken bottle and not fight back. Especially not when he could easily turn his attention to Bria if I didn’t take him down.
My hand tightened on the knife, and I could feel the small spider rune stamped into the hilt pressing against the larger, matching scar on my palm. Owen had made this set of knives for me as a Christmas present, and he’d put my rune, my mark, on all the weapons. They were the best blades I’d ever had, and I had no qualms about using them to whittle Pete down to size.
Pete’s eyes widened, but he didn’t back down, even though he’d just watched me take out his giant friend. Dumbass. He lurched forward, swiping at me with the broken bottle. I easily sidestepped him again and again and again. I could have kept this dance up all night long.
“Stand still,” he growled.
“Why, whatever you say, sugar.”
The next time he came at me, I stepped into his body, already turning, turning, turning. I put my back to his chest, grabbed the arm with the broken bottle, and used his own momentum to neatly flip him over my shoulder. Pete slammed into the floor, the bottle sliding out of his fingers and tinkling across the floor. He blinked and started to get up, so I punched him in the face, cutting off that idea. But Pete kept flailing around, his right hand reaching, reaching, reaching for his broken bottle, so I drove my silverstone knife all the way through his palm, pinning it to the floorboard underneath.
For a moment, silence filled the restaurant—complete, utter silence.
Then Pete started screaming, and he didn’t stop. I let him blubber on for about thirty seconds before I yanked the knife out of his palm and used the hilt to clip him in the temple. He slumped to the floor, unconscious, although blood continued to pour of out his wounded hand. The steady stream soaked into weathered wood, covering it like a fresh, glossy coat of crimson varnish.
I got to my feet and realized that everyone was staring at me—again. Just like they had for weeks now at the Pork Pit. Eyes wide, nostrils flared, fear tightening their faces. This time, I couldn’t help the tired sigh that escaped my lips.
So much for my vacation.

I am giving away one paper copy of By A Thread to a US Resident. To enter just tell me who your favorite character in the series is and leave a way for me to contact you in the comments either an email (i.e.: buckeyegirlreads at gmail dot com) or twitter id so I have a way to contact you if you are the winner. Giveaway is open until 11pm  Tuesday Feb 28th, 2012. Winner may be contacted by email and not necessarily announced in a blog post. If I do not hear from the winner within two days a new one will be chosen.