Book Excerpts


by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Shrouded in the dark, and half hidden behind the thick trunk of an oak tree, Russell Ryan Hankelburg carefully aligned the trajectory of his arrow to the exposed neck of Master Han. Steady, Russell reminded himself in response to the adrenaline pounding through his veins. No point in acting like a human. He wasn’t one. Han had made sure of that, and now the bastard would die for it.

For over two years, through hot, humid jungle and over cold, windblown hills, Russell had tracked his prey. Finally, in the next few seconds it would all be over. His quest for revenge. The culmination of all his rage, the vindication for all he had lost, and the sole purpose for his sorry undead existence.

The clearing where Han stood was about fifty yards away, and a dozen guards stood around the perimeter, four of them holding torches. The flames licked at the overcast night sky and flickered off the polished gold of Master Han’s mask. How many times had Russell envisioned ripping the ridiculous piece of metal off the evil vampire’s head? In the best-case scenario, he imagined tearing it off before delivering the final blow so he could watch Han’s face as the Master Bastard realized death was only seconds away.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Hidden deep in the Himalayan Mountains is the valley of Beyul-La, inhabited by a secret cult of warrior women. No men (or sons) are allowed in the valley. Then one night, on a quest to solve a mystery, Zoltan Czakvar unknowingly crosses into their territory. The warrior women are dispatched, and one finds him. After Neona knocks him out, she must decide what to do with this impressive invader...

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Dougal Kincaid was not in a partying mood.

As he entered the ballroom at Romatech Industries, his stomach churned. Too many people. The jarring noise of all their voices grated on his ears, and he dreaded the thought of participating in meaningless chatter. For centuries, he’d avoided these situations by playing the pipes, but those days were gone. That left him with one option for surviving the night.


Hopefully the mixture of synthetic blood and whisky would deaden his undead senses before he was confronted with the same questions he’d been hearing for the past four years. How’s your new prosthesis? Can you still wield a sword? Will you be able to play the pipes again?

He had a better question: how fast could he get drunk? He headed for the refreshment tables.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


South Carolina
Friday, August 25, 1780

Captain Matthias Murray Thomas tugged at the ropes that bound his hands behind his back. The gradual lightening of the night sky, visible through the open window, warned him he was running out of time. With the coming of dawn, he and his companions would be marched to their death.

His movements caused a drop to trickle down his arm. Either blood from his shoulder wound or sweat, he could no longer tell, for the hot, humid air was thick with the scent of both. Mosquitoes hummed over them, enjoying the feast of defenseless men.

The call of a wood warbler claimed his attention and brought back memories of his youth. His family would spend the summer months in Charles Town, then return to the plantation in the fall, where the song of the wood warbler would greet him. Every year the birds rested for the autumn months in the South Carolina marshlands before continuing their migration south.

The warbler’s song pierced the air, jolting him back to the present. He and the other captured soldiers were being held in an abandoned house just north of Nelson’s Ferry on the Santee River. In August.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Friday, July 21, 1769

“What the bloody hell is happening here?” Quincy Stanton demanded as his uncle crossed the gangplank onto his schooner.

Edward Stanton gave him a wry smile. “Is that any way to greet me? I haven’t seen you in months.”

“Sorry.” Quincy glared at the soldiers in the distance. “I thought I had escaped the British, and what do I find the minute I arrive in Boston but a pack of redcoats marching up and down the wharf. Why is the British army here?”

“A good question.”

Over his uncle’s shoulder, Quincy spied a short man in brown carefully inching his way across the narrow gangplank. A landlubber. “Who is this?” he whispered. “An acquaintance of yours?”

“I’ll introduce you later.” Edward lowered his voice. “Right now, I must speak to you. Alone, in your cabin.”

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


In the dim light of a cloud-shrouded moon, Shanna Draganesti cast a forlorn look at the flower beds she’d once tended with care. They’d become choked with weeds since her death.

To be honest, gardening had ranked low on her list of priorities for the past three months. She’d had bigger things to fret about, such as adjusting to a steady diet of blood when six years ago she would have fainted at the sight of it, and dealing with an increased amount of psychic power that made it too easy to hear people’s thoughts whether she wanted to or not.

Practically overnight, she’d been expected to master all the vampire skills. Levitation? Downright scary to look down and see nothing beneath her feet. With no way to ground herself, she kept tipping over. Mental note: never wear a skirt to levitation practice.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


“Get real, Phineas! You can’t expect me to believe this crap!”

Phineas McKinney frowned at his younger brother, who was clutching the steering wheel with white-knuckled desperation. Obviously, last night’s confession had not gone as well as he had thought. “Freemont, you gotta know I would never lie to you--”

“I know that!” Freemont shot him a frantic look, then turned the windshield wipers up to a higher speed to combat the rain that pelted his thirteen-year-old, dented Chevy Impala. “But that doesn’t leave me with a lot of options, you know? First I thought you’d gone crazy. Then I thought you must be doing drugs. Then when I tried to talk to you this afternoon, I thought you were dead! I mean, seriously, start-the-damned-funeral dead!”

“I’m not crazy,” Phineas muttered. “And I don’t do drugs.”

The atmosphere in the car sizzled with tension, interrupted only by the noise of the wipers swishing back and forth. A wet, slushy sound, followed by a high-pitched, prolonged screech reminiscent of fingernails on a blackboard.

Phineas winced. There were times when having supersensitive hearing was not an advantage.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Simone tore the man’s shirt open and skimmed her hand down his smooth, hairless chest and rippled abs.

“I have a hunger that cannot be denied,” she murmured in her husky French accent.

The man turned his chiseled jaw to expose his neck. “Take me. My body, my blood-I’m all yours.”

She trailed a finger along his carotid artery, then suddenly shoved him away. “No! I can no longer bear it!”

With a dramatic swish of her pink silk negligee, she rose to her feet. The voluminous skirt swirled around her long legs, allowing a peek at her matching pink stilettos.

She lifted a pale hand to her brow. “What is a vampire to do? For so many years I have endured the same taste. How I long for something different!”

She moved forward, lowering her hand with a graceful flutter. “I need something new, something rich, robust, and sophisticat-ack!” She tripped on her nightgown and fell flat on her face.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


After four hundred and ninety-nine years of existence, Connor Buchanan arrived at an inescapable conclusion regarding himself. He was a coldhearted old bastard.

He slowed to a walk after checking the extensive grounds at Romatech. He’d enjoyed zipping through the trees at vampire speed with the cool breeze whipping at his face and filling his nostrils with the heady scent of newly budded leaves and flowers. But then he’d realized why he welcomed the coming of spring. Not for the warmer temperatures. Not for the promise of rebirth and renewal, since he would remain the same as he’d been for centuries. No, to be brutally honest with himself, it was the shorter nights he was looking forward to. That meant longer days and more death-sleep. More time spent in utter oblivion. No thoughts. No memories. No remorse.

The main building at Romatech Industries came into view, and he slowed his pace even more, struck by a sudden reluctance to reenter the facility. More and more these days, he preferred to be alone.

Why bother with companions? Was there any conversation he hadn’t already experienced a dozen or more times? And if he even hinted at the black despair that threatened to engulf him, he would only receive knowing looks from other Vamps as they doled out the usual diagnosis. He was nearing his five hundredth birthday, and apparently, hitting that mid-millennium marker could plunge the most stalwart of Vamps into a mid-life crisis.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 


Caitlyn had been warned never to come near this place. Gutsy or foolish, she didn’t know which category she fell into, but it was too late to worry about that now. She had arrived.

Her rental car’s headlights illuminated a smooth, black-topped driveway. Tall trees arched over the road, their skeletal branches grasping like gnarled fingers at the starlit sky. She suppressed a shudder and focused instead on the patches of bright yellow daffodils scattered over the grounds.

Looking for the positive, she would call it. Foolhardy, some might say. But when facing the unknown, she’d learned in her twenty-six years that keeping a good attitude was critical.The fact that the grounds appeared well-maintained was a good sign. And the security guard at the entrance had seemed friendly, checking her ID and welcoming her with a smile.

Think of this as an adventure. You love adventure.

Even so, her grip tightened on the steering wheel as she watched the heavy wrought-iron gate swing shut in her rearview mirror. The metallic clang echoed around the barren trees and vibrated through her bones.

She was locked in.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

Excerpt, Chapter Two

Olivia Sotiris is vacationing at her grandmother Eleni’s house on a Greek isle. It’s late at night, and they’re in the courtyard that overlooks the beach.

Eleni cinched the belt tighter on her blue terry-cloth bathrobe. “Tell me what’s troubling you, child.”

“I’m fine. Just jet lag and—-” Olivia stopped when she felt a flash of anger emanating from her grandmother. “Sorry. I’m used to telling people I’m fine when I’m...not.”

Eleni sighed. “I understand, but you should know better than to lie to me.”

Olivia nodded, relieved that her grandmother’s anger had quickly dissolved. She knew all about her grandmother’s strange gift, for she was the only grandchild to inherit it. They could both tell when a person was lying. And they could sense people’s emotions.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

In Chapter One, Vanda is summoned to Coven Court. Coven Master, Roman Draganesti, is presiding...

“Laszlo,” Roman began quietly.

“Yes, sir?” The Coven Secretary fiddled with a button on his lab coat.

“Since Vanda Barkowski has finally arrived, let us proceed to the other suits against her.”

Other suits? As in plural? Vanda glanced around nervously. Roman’s wife gave her a sympathetic smile.

Anger sparked inside Vanda, and she clenched her fists. She didn’t need anyone’s sympathy. She was tough, dammit.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

From Chapter One…

“I don’t want to die...again,” Laszlo groaned.

Jack knelt beside Laszlo’s sprawled body. “Can I fetch you anything? A warm cup of Type O?”

Laszlo covered his mouth. “Don’t talk about food.”

Mi dispiace.” Jack patted the Vamp on the shoulder, the only spot on the guy’s shirt that wasn’t soaked with spewed Blissky. Poor Laszlo. He’d only drunk one glass of the whiskey-flavored synthetic blood when everyone had toasted the groom, but obviously the little chemist was better at making Vampire Fusion Cuisine than ingesting it. He’d promptly thrown up all over himself.

There wasn’t much anyone could do for the poor guy, so the bachelor party had raged on in full force while Laszlo had rolled on the floor, his face clammy and pale.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

From chapter two…

She made a stunning cat burglar, dressed entirely in black spandex that molded to her waist and sweetly curved hips. Her golden hair hung in a ponytail down her back. The ends swished gently across her shoulder blades as she moved her head from side to side, scanning the bookshelf.

She stepped to the side, silent in her black socks. She must have left her shoes outside the window, thinking she’d move more quietly without them. He noted her slim ankles, then let his gaze wander back up to golden hair. He would have to be careful capturing her. Like any Vamp, he had super strength, and she looked a bit fragile.

He moved silently past the wingback chairs to the window. It made a swooshing sound as he shut it.

With a gasp, she turned toward him. Her eyes widened. Eyes green as the hills surrounding his home in Scotland.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

At the Grand Opening of Jean-Luc Echarpe’s store in Texas, he watches the mortals from behind the one-way glass in his upstairs office.  He spots a beautiful woman copying his designs and rushes downstairs to confront her.  As a schoolteacher, Heather Westfield can’t afford anything at Echarpe’s fancy new store, so she decides to sew her own version of his latest designs.  Suddenly, a man comes out of nowhere and threatens to have her arrested!  He must be a security guard, a very handsome security guard…

Excerpt from Chapter Two:

He took hold of her arm. “I saw you copying the white gown. It is twenty thousand dollars. Since you are so interested in it, you should buy it.”

She snorted. “I wouldn’t be caught dead in that gown.”

What?” His eyebrows shot up. “There’s nothing wrong with that design.”

“Are you kidding?” She pulled away from his grasp.  “What was Echarpe thinking? The neckline plunges past the navel. The skirt slits up to North Dakota. No woman in her right mind would wear that thing in public.”

His jaw shifted as he ground his teeth. “The models are happy to wear it.”

“My point, exactly. Those poor women are so malnourished, they can’t think straight. Take my friend Sasha. Her idea of a three-course meal is a celery stick, a cherry tomato, and a laxative. She’s killing herself to fit into these clothes. Women like me can’t dress like that.”

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

It is the evening of St. Patrick’s Day, and Angus MacKay, the general of the Vamp army, has a new mission—- Stop the mortal who’s slaying vampires in Central Park.

Chapter One, Scene 2

Emma Wallace stomped her feet silently in the grass. The chilly air felt good as long as she was walking, but whenever she crouched behind a tree for very long, her legs grew stiff.

This part of Central Park was dead, even too dead for the Undead. Time to move on. She slung her canvas tote bag over her shoulder and enjoyed the comforting sound of wooden stakes clattering against one another. She slipped out of her hiding place and skidded down the sharp incline to the brick path below. Her movement startled some birds from a nearby tree. They cawed, beating the air with a fluttering of wings as they flew into the darkness.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

As chapter one begins,  Maggie O’Brian is an actress on the vampire soap opera, As the Vampire Turns.

“It’s over, Don Orlando.” Maggie O’Brian lowered her gaze. The tears that blurred her vision had little to do with the role she was playing--Jessica Goodwin, mortal doctor, hopelessly in love with a vampire. Like any good soap opera actress, Maggie turned her back to the person she was addressing and looked sadly at the camera. “You must never come here again.”

“Don’t say that!” Don Orlando rushed to her side and sank gracefully to one knee. He seized her hand and kissed it. “My darling Chiquita, I could never let you go.”

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

Excerpt from Chapter One 
Darcy’s Job Interview at the Digital Vampire Network

Darcy Newhart came to an abrupt stop inside the lobby of DVN. She could hardly see the black and red décor, the room was so crowded. There had to be over fifty Vamps here, all jabbering with excitement. Good God, were they all seeking employment?

Gregori bumped into her from behind. “Sorry,” he murmured, his gaze wandering about the room.

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

Chapter One 

Even in the dark, Roman Draganesti knew someone had quietly entered his office. Either a foe or close friend. A friend, he decided. A foe could never make it past the guards at each entrance of his Upper Eastside Manhattan townhouse. Or past the guards stationed on each of the five floors. 

With his excellent night vision, Roman suspected he could see much better than his uninvited guest. His suspicions were confirmed when the dark silhouette stumbled into a Louis XVI bombé chest and cursed softly. 

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by Kerrelyn Sparks 

The setting is Boston, 1769, and Quincy Stanton has agreed to spy on the British army. Since many of the British officers are quartered in the homes of wealthy Loyalists, Quincy must masquerade as a Loyalist, also. And so, the adventure begins...


Tuesday, August 29, 1769 

“I say, dear gel, how much do you cost?” 

Virginia’s mouth dropped open. “I--I beg your pardon?” 

The bewigged, bejeweled and bedeviling man who faced her spoke again. “You’re a fetching sight and quite sweet-smelling for wench who has traveled for weeks, imprisoned on this godforsaken ship. I say, what is your price?” 

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