Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Deep Within The Stone Preorder, Excerpt, and Cover Reveal

This summer has been a very busy one. I feel like I've been on the road since March.  I have one more trip to make before things settle down and I'll be able to hideout in my office and live my next SEAL Book. I mean write.  

 I'm thrilled to announce I've finished the second book of my Superstition Series.  And I have a cover to share.   I think it's gorgeous and my guy is just beautiful.  
This book is my take on a Beauty and a Beast love story.  And I think it's both sweet, tormenting, and passionate. I found my Hero, Finn, both tortured and strong. I think my cover depicts that.   


Release day will be Halloween. October 31st, 2017.  And the book is available for preorder at $2.99. at Amazon: http://amzn.to/2xY7clQ   

Here's the blurb and an unedited excerpt to wet your appetite. 
The Blurb: 

THE BEAUTY…

Like Michelangelo, gifted sculptor Genevieve Warren believes her purpose is to set free the beings she can sense trapped inside the stone she carves. But she’s never had a sculpture speak to her like the rare 14th century gargoyle left out in the elements to crumble in a castle garden. Because of Scottish antiquity law, she can’t buy him, but she leases him and has him shipped home. However, she’s left to wonder why his owners are so eager to get rid of part of their history.

THE BEAST…

Finlay MacLeod has spent centuries as a monster. Stone by day and beast at night, he craves an escape from the endless loneliness of his existence. When Genevieve cares for the stone sculpture as though he’s real, he hopes he’s found someone who will care for the monster imprisoned inside it, too… and help him end his suffering. But first he must reveal to her he’s alive.

THE CURSE…

Genevieve becomes aware there are mystical things afoot when she’s told dark magic surrounds the sculpture she’s imported. The reality of what she’s welcomed into her life is more fantastic and compelling than anything she could have imagined.

But there’s more than one kind of monster prowling the hills and valleys of Superstition. One has decided that only Genevieve can feed his many hungers.  He’s watching, waiting, and moving closer every moment.

My editor has the entire 86,672 word book in her hands and is working hard. But I'm going to post an excerpt she hasn't edited yet. 
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A well-dressed man strode down the entrance foyer and paused to greet her and introduced himself as Mr. Jonathan Taylor. His face was narrow and his warm brown eyes had a hint of gold. His blond hair, a few inches too long to be considered traditionally immaculate, hung over his shirt collar and had her studying him with interest.
“I’m Genevieve Warren.” She offered her hand. “I’m here to inquire about the gargoyle from the Dunvegan Castle grounds.”
“Yes. My secretary notified me you’d be coming. I’ll get a bag for your umbrella and we’ll go down the hall. The statue is so heavy we wanted to keep it on the ground floor. We haven’t moved it to a room yet. But I’ve had it uncrated in the storage room at the back of the building. I hope you won’t mind viewing it there.”
“No, not at all.” She studied the golden glow of the floor and the high ceilings while she waited for him to return. She slipped the umbrella into the plastic bag he handed her and walked along side him down a wide hallway.  
The storage area was well lit and had hand crafted shelves, some with slots where paintings could rest on their edge until they were hung. Reinforced shelving for pottery, ceramics, and other three dimensional artworks stretched against all four walls. Close to the large shipping bay doors was the gargoyle. She recognized him from the back. A tail curved around his muscular thigh, while his wings stretched up and back partially folded together.
 She had first seen the statue in the garden at Dunvegan Castle and asked about it. Years of exposure to the elements and nature had discolored and streaked the stone leaving it mottled. The pattern of weathering looked like melted candle wax, but it didn’t detract from the work.
Genevieve circled to face the piece and was struck once again by the raw emotion depicted in the creatures face, a combination of torment and rage. He was ugly, yet she saw a dash of humanity in his features. It was that element that drew her. His expression had stuck in her thoughts long after she’d left the castle and moved on to her bed and breakfast there on the Isle of Skye.
In medieval architecture of the Gothic period Gargoyles were used mostly as down spouts on the roofs to project water away from the buildings during rainstorms. To find a full sculpture of this kind was very rare. The owners had to want a fortune for it.
But then again maybe not. Instead of being a curiosity and drawing the attention of the visitors on the castle grounds, she’d been told it had often frightened them because of the suffering depicted in his expression. He was life sized, and that in itself made him intimidating.  Had he not been kneeling on one knee, he’d be at least six feet tall.
Another oddity was the sculpture had impressive realistic sexual organs; something unheard of since gargoyles had always been depicted as sexually neutral though most gave the impression of being male. To find such nudity in a sculpture of that period was surprising. During the medieval era artists and society as a whole were focused on dissuading the populace from sin. Nudity of any kind in paintings and sculptures had been discouraged adamantly and was almost non-existent.  In fact, she was surprised the sculpture hadn’t been defaced.
“He of course needs to be cleaned, what with the pigeons having roosted on him and the natural weathering of the stone. The fact that he hasn’t been tended will work in your favor and the price will be adjusted.”
“I’m a sculptor. I know how to clean stone,” she murmured taking in the shape of the gargoyle’s ears. They lay against his head and were pointed at the top which made him look a little like a Vulcan.”
“A professional sculptor?” Jonathan Taylor asked.
“Yes. I work in stone and wood.”
“Genevieve Warren.” His brows rose. “I read an article in a magazine just recently about your work.”
“You may have. It’s beginning to come along.”
He smiled. “And they say the Scottish are masters of the understatement.” His accent had grown a little thicker.
“I am part Scot and part French. My father’s family came from La Varenne, my mother’s family was from the Inverness area. That may be why I am always at odds with myself. May I touch him?”
“Certainly.” He motioned with a long expressive hand.
She stepped forward and knelt to cup the gargoyle’s snarling face in her hands. From her position, she gazed directly into his eyes. She read suffering in the narrowing of his lids, but also defiance and more than a glint of rage. A strange tumbling sensation attacked the pit of her stomach. His bunched jaw muscles felt almost real. For several moments she was content to caress the shape of his chin. The artisan who sculpted this was a master.
She braced a hand against the muscular slope of his shoulder to rise. Her eyes followed the line of his wing caught in the moment when it had just started to flex.
“What do you think about him?”
“I think he’s so ugly he’s beautiful.”
Taylor laughed.
The pelt of thick wavy hair following the contours of the gargoyle’s head was strange as well. He was a chimera, part human, and part beast. She rested her hand upon his crown, tempted by the detail to smooth the disheveled strands. She stepped away to circle him again and study his wings. Bony fingers fanned from his shoulder blades and veins branched from the joint to trail through the thin membrane very similar to a bat’s. The detail was exquisite and would show up much better once he was cleaned.
To his credit, Taylor stood by silently and didn’t attempt to pressure her for a sale. “How much are they hoping to get for him?”
“Twenty thousand pounds. But there is a hitch”
She raised her brows. She wasn’t surprised.
“Historic Scotland will not allow any sculpture of the period to be sold outright, and transported to another country, but it can be put on permanent loan. So you would not be able to purchase him straight out, but pay for the right to have him relocated indefinitely.”
 So she would be paying twenty-five thousand US dollars to house and care for him but could not claim ownership because she lived in another country. Twenty thousand dollars she could use for materials to do more sculptures. Stone didn’t come cheap. But she could do some smaller things or work in wood to make up for the difference. Her work was moving well.
She studied the gargoyle a few more moments. “The transport to get him home will cost me dearly,” she murmured. Possibly as much as five thousand. And then the transport from the ship to her studio another two or three. She was probably looking at close to thirty thousand, maybe more.
She’d gone insane. She was going to spend as much for a sculpture as it would cost to house a family of four for a year in her neck of the woods. And he wouldn’t even belong to her.
“They could easily get five times what they’re asking at auction and sell him to someone here in Scotland.”
This statue was a one of a kind and would be well worth the money.
Why was she so drawn to him? He wouldn’t fit in her studio with all her own work. He’d have to go on the porch outside her studio. The insurance would probably be astronomical. She cupped his cheek and felt the curve against her palm. He had to be fashioned after a real man.  She’d do some research and find out. She bent and whispered in his pointed ear. “Do you want to come to America with me?”
Taylor chuckled.  
She looked up and smiled again.
“We can help you with the transport arrangements. We often ship things stateside via plane and ship.”
“I’d appreciate that.” She reached inside her coat pocket and withdrew a business card with her name and contact information on it.
“You sound very sure they’ll sell him to me.”
“I can’t be completely certain, but they remembered your interest in him when you visited the castle, a few weeks back. ‘Twas from them I got your number. They seemed interested in giving you first dibs.”
“If they decide my offer is enough, I’ll give him a good home and he’ll be in out of the rain and snow.”
Taylor smiled, his light brown eyes alight with amusement. “You speak about and to him as though he’s alive.”
“My own sculptures seem alive to me. I breathe life into them with my hammer and chisel. Whoever sculpted him,” She nodded toward the gargoyle. “Thought the same.”
Taylor turned his attention to the statue with a thoughtful look. “Too bad they didn’t give him a more pleasant expression. But then he wouldn’t have scared away evil spirits nearly as well.”
“He wouldn’t be nearly as interesting either.” Genevieve wandered toward the exit and Taylor turned to walk with her.
“Would you like a cup of tea?” he asked.
“I’ve taken up enough of your time and I’m sure you have other responsibilities waiting for you.”
“Actually I’m through for the day and I’d be pleased if you’d join me. There’s an Italian restaurant just up the street.” He motioned for her to go ahead of him through the door.  
Genevieve studied his narrow face with its warm brown eyes and shaggy blond hair. A quick twinge of grief assailed her and she started to turn him down but hesitated. She’d only be in Scotland another three days. But it might be pleasant to spend an hour with an attractive man. She’d never see him again. 
And Simon her agent wasn’t here to warn her away from him, as he always did.
They came to a stop in the entrance foyer. “Italian sounds good.”
Taylor smiled his eyes alight with pleasure. “I’ll just get my coat and umbrella.
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I hope you enjoyed the excerpt. And look for a Halloween release!!! I'm so excited about this book. I love my hero, the gargoyle, and there's an unexpected twist in the book I think you'll find as creepy as I did. 

Read on,
Teresa Reasor 



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7 comments:

Jackie Williams said...

Lordy! Sounds fabulous! Can't wait so have pre-ordered!

Teresa Reasor said...

Thanks so much, Jackie. I appreciate it. And I have to say, I love everything you write as well. You have a real gift.
Teresa

Stephany Tullis said...

I love the cover! And the concept sounds so intriguing. Added to my TBR list.

Teresa Reasor said...

Thanks, Stephany. The story is a little dark, but my hero is something special. Thanks for dropping by. Teresa

Lynn Cooper said...

What an interesting and wonderfully romantic premise.

chad schimke said...

Good luck on the book. The sample on the cover look awesome!

Teresa Reasor said...

Thanks, Lynn and Chad for stopping by and leaving a comment. I'm thrilled with my cover and I'm proud of the book. It is a different premise. I hope others are as interested in it as you two.

Teresa