If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Excerpt: Unforgiven by Lori Adams / @TastyBookTours @LoriAdams33

Title: Unforgiven
Series: Soulkeepers, Book 3
Author: Lori Adams
Publisher: Loveswept
Release Date: April 21, 2015
Genre: Paranormal, Coming of Age, Romance
ARC Received From: NetGalley
Reviewed For: Tasty Book Tours

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Otherworldly desire and paranormal action reach new heights in the final installment of The Soulkeepers. As Sophia St. James moves Heaven and Hell to claim her destiny, questions are answered, secrets are revealed—and immortal love is tested.

After finally becoming a powerful Spirit Walker, Sophia St. James is shocked to discover that her conjured identical twin, Ka—along with her soul—have been dragged down to Hell by the relentless Demon Knight Dante. Sophia tries to hide the crisis, but there is little hope of keeping any secrets from her red-hot Guardian Angel. Growing suspicious, Michael has been making plans of his own that will bind him and Sophia together forever.

But Sophia is plagued with evil visions through Ka’s experiences in Hell. She is terrified that Dante will discover he has taken the wrong Sophia. Desperate to return to her original state before she withers away and dies, she risks everything to go where Michael can’t follow. To bring back Ka and save her own soul, Sophia must now enter the gates of Hell.

Other books in this series

Dad releases me and runs a hand over his face. He looks exhausted and about ten years older. He’s obviously been through an emotional upheaval tonight. Unraveling his bow tie, he walks across the room where Aunt Sasha hands him a drink, since it looks like he could use one.
After tossing it back, he coughs, unaccustomed to alcohol. “I came because . . . your mother sent me here.” His voice is slow and heavy, more from emotion and less from liquor. He looks at me. “I could hardly believe her . . . it was so incredible.”
“When?” I step closer, eager to hear. “When did she ask you to come here?”
He looks down into the glass, his chin quivering. “That night. In the courthouse when . . . that demon killed you.” He drinks the rest quickly, and then grips the tumbler, forcing himself to continue. “When you were Taken and I was passed out on the floor, useless—pathetically useless—Celeste appeared to me. In a dream, I suppose. And she told me that you were not lost. You would return to your body and that I was to ask Katarina and Dimitri for help. She explained they were angels for The Council of Guardians. She said they would keep an eye on you while you trained to become a spirit walker. She said it was a dangerous calling but you were destined to it.”
All eyes swing to Michael’s parents. I remember how gracious they’ve always been, eager to invite me over, and so happy when my training finally began. Now I understand why. Mom had intervened.
“Celeste was particularly afraid that Dante would not give up,” Dimitri offers to explain the question I’ve yet to ask. “We feared she was right, too. So we asked Raph and Milvi to pay close attention to—”
“Why didn’t you ask me?” Michael explodes, startling everyone. “Katarina. Dimitri. You should have told me. What right do you have to keep this from me?” He has the hardened look of a warrior and speaks to his parents as though he now outranks them, which, I’m surprised to realize, he does. Michael once explained to me that Halo warriors are much like archangels. They are to be obeyed by all other angels.
Katarina and Dimitri look noticeably uncomfortable. “We didn’t think it was necessary to tell you,” Dimitri says calmly. “Your own trials had begun, and then after the way you reacted to her Ascended Master’s arrival . . .” His accusation fades and everyone looks at Rama.
Dad whirls around and looks at Rama. “So you’re the one? You’ve been training my daughter to help lost souls cross over?”
Rama bows his head respectfully and then extends his hand. “Rama Kuan, here. Totally stoked to finally meet you, Pops. Sorry about sneaking in and out of your casa grande. Most parents aren’t hip to the training.”
Dad shakes Rama’s hand and actually smiles. His fear has abated and he seems happy. “Good to meet you, Mr. Kuan. How is Sophia doing? With her trials?”
“Call me Rama. And your little wahine did awesome. She’s totally completed her trials. Just tonight. Already been accepted into the Fold of spiritual warriors. We just came from the ceremony. It was righteous and pure.” Rama grins and nods like a pigeon.
Dad’s brow twitches with confusion. He looks at me. “So that means you did it? It’s over? You’re a spirit walker now?”
I smile and hold out my right hand, pulsating with a faint blue light. Dad says “What?” and takes my hand, squeezing it. I’ve forgotten that ordinary humans can’t see my Chelsea Light. I tell him about it and watch his eyes grow wide with wonder. He opens my hand and inspects it. “Incredible. I don’t see a thing.”
I burst out laughing. It’s nervous energy. I can’t believe the bizarre turn of events: finding out that Dad has known all along about my training, and about Michael and his family. For the first time since the ceremony, I remember all that I’ve gained, not just what I’ve lost. Dad hugs me again, telling me he’s so proud he can hardly believe it. My eyes cut to Michael, and the joy seeps away. He is glaring at his parents, his face hardened and his nostrils flaring. He is holding back a storm.
Whatever is going on between them, I don’t think Dad or Rama or I should bear witness. So I make our excuses to leave, claiming that I want to tell Dad all about my training. There is an awkward silence because no one seems to be in the mood to celebrate anymore, not with Michael radiating such anger. And then Uriel’s bird takes flight, wheeling around the room and making a strange cry. It lands directly on top of my head. Milvi is horrified and demands that Uriel fetch it. She tries to shoo it away while Uriel laughs.
“It’s a good omen, right?” Dad asks as the bird taps its feet on my scalp. I feel it peck at my dreadlocks. “A bird on the head, will keep you well fed?”
“Only if I kill it and eat it,” I murmur, embarrassed. “Uriel, do you mind?” He raises his hand and the bird swoops across the room. Settled back on Uriel’s shoulder, it digs a treat from the pile of seeds in his palm.
“Yes,” Dad decides. “It must be a good omen. Everything has turned out as it should have. Dante is gone. Sophia has completed her training and is safe and sound. Now I would like to apologize for overreacting earlier. I can see now that my daughter was in very capable hands. I had absolutely nothing to worry about.”
Dad’s words are full of such faith that I can hardly believe the worst is yet to come.

Lori Adams is the author of the Soulkeepers series: Forbidden, Awaken, and Unforgiven. She wrote her first book—about scary sharks—at the age of eight. Now she writes New Adult, young adult, and middle-grade fiction. Originally from Oklahoma, Adams lives in Southern California with her husband and two daughters.

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