I'm very happy to host a stop on Kelly Oram's book tour for “Ungifted” today! I've got an excerpt to share with you, as well as a giveaway and details on how you can pick up a copy of this second book in the Supernaturals series. Check it out!
Even though her father is running for President of the United States, Grace St. Claire is as normal a girl as they come. She’s clumsy, shy, and an outcast among her peers. She even manages to nearly die in a freak accident in front of the entire school. But when Grace survives a vampire attack she quickly learns that she is anything but ordinary.
There’s something about human Grace that has all the supernaturals around her going crazy. Her best friend’s brother suddenly wants to date her. Her worst enemy has sworn to protect her even against her wishes. Someone with very powerful magic wants her dead, and the vampire that attacked her has developed an obsession with making her his eternal mate.
In order to survive—and not as Count Dracula’s undead bride—Grace dives head first into the terrifying world of the supernatural. She teams up with a charming but mysterious warlock who strolled into town causing trouble and spouting stories of a Prophesy and Chosen One that looks exactly like Grace. Together they must figure out why Grace is different, who wants her dead, how she’s connected to the Chosen One, and who they can really trust.
Author: Kelly Oram
Genre: YA paranormal/fantasy
Series: Supernaturals #2 (companion)
“Grace, love.” He whispered so softly it sent a chill down my spine. “You do not want to tell me no.”
My blood froze in my veins. I couldn't breathe. The threat in his tone was unmistakable. When I started to shake, his arm tightened around me in a loving embrace. He pulled a camera from his pocket, held it up to take a picture of the two of us, and then turned it around to show me the display. I may as well have been a statue. He began to flip back through the photos in the camera’s memory. When I realized what I was looking at, I nearly screamed.
Andrew felt me suck in a breath and his grip quickly became a restraint. He whispered against my ear again, even lower than he had before. “Careful, love. You don't want to call attention to yourself and make people curious just now.”
He was right, but no matter how hard I tried I couldn't keep my eyes from filling with tears as he flipped through photo after photo of my dad with his mom. Mrs. De La Cote was a married woman — affiliated with an organization that had not only given my dad their endorsement, but had also donated generously to his campaign.
These pictures would destroy my father. He would never work in politics again. He could even land in prison. Everything he'd spent his entire life working for would be taken from him in a matter of seconds if anyone ever saw these pictures. It wouldn't matter that he hadn't known what he was doing — not that anyone would ever know that besides me.
“Turn it off!” I demanded.
Andrew slipped his camera back into his pocket and then wiped my eyes. “Relax, Grace. No one needs to ever know these photos exist. You father doesn't even remember what happened. It can stay our little secret.”
In that moment I felt my entire world crumble down around me. I didn't have a choice. Okay, technically, I did. I could still say no… and be the ruin of the next President of the United States, who, though he wasn't always the most attentive father, was a good man and would be a great leader, and was, in a way, innocent of the crime he'd committed. I couldn't do it. He was my father. Sometimes I hated him, but I still loved him.
“Why are you doing this to me?”
“I'm not doing this to you, love, I'm doing it for you.” More tears spilled down my cheeks and Andrew turned my face up to his. “Your life is empty. You don't see it now, but you will once you have someone that truly cares about you. Your father thinks only of his career, your nephilim resents the gift he's been given to be your protector, and your wolves are merely acting on orders.”
I opened my mouth to refute that last accusation, but Andrew stopped me before I could.
“Remember, I have spies in the resistance, love. You don't believe it's a coincidence that the children of one of the highest resistance leaders are your friends, do you? Trust me — your wolves are under orders to get close to you. It is the reason they transferred to your school after your father announced his candidacy last year. If you don't believe me, just ask. The males couldn't care less about you, and the guilt eats away at your female friend.”
He was right about the timing of the Laytons' transfer to Atherton; Cynthia had singled me out almost immediately.
I didn't believe it. I wouldn't. But it still stung.
“You deserve so much better, love, and I'm going to give it to you.”
I didn't understand how Andrew could look at me the way he was, when he was so viciously blackmailing me like this. Did vampires come without a conscience, or was he really so crazy-obsessed that he actually believed he was helping me? I finally understood the fixation thing. I wished I hadn't brushed it off so easily before.
“You are mine now, Grace,” Andrew said as he ran his thumb beneath my wet eyes again.
I tried to turn away from him, but he tilted my chin back up and brought his lips down on mine. As he kissed me, a sob hiccuped in my chest.
“Don't be sad. You will love me eventually,” he promised between his kisses.
I prayed he would stop. I'd never wanted anything more desperately in my life than I wanted him to never touch me again. I couldn't have been more scared had I been drowning in an ocean of sharks. I bet the feeling was probably similar. I couldn't breathe, I couldn't escape, and Andrew was ripping me to pieces.
Ethan! I started to call, but then stopped myself.
What could Ethan do? Nothing. I couldn't call for him. He wouldn't care about my dad's life if mine were in any way in danger. He'd take me away from here and then Andrew would show his pictures to the dozens of reporters present. Or he'd kill Andrew when he found out what was going on. Then he'd go to prison and Andrew's parents would still release the photos.
“Kiss me back, Grace. People are watching.”
No, Ethan couldn't fix this. He could protect me, but he couldn't protect my father. I was trapped. Andrew as good as owned me.
Places to Purchase Ungifted by Kelly Oram
About Kelly Oram
Kelly Oram wrote her first novel at age fifteen — a fan fiction about her favorite music group, The Backstreet Boys, for which family and friends still tease her. She's obsessed with reading, talks way too much, and loves to eat frosting by the spoonful. She lives outside of Phoenix, Arizona with her husband and four children.