Friday, 2 November 2012

Above Ground: A Blog Tour

As promised, A. M. Harte stops by on her Above Ground blog tour.  Today, All Souls Day, she brings an excerpt from her new dark fantasy, Above Ground.  Not only is she sharing a tantalizing tidbit to read, she comes bearing gifts, in the form of a Rafflecopter contest.  So read on and then enter (the contest that is)...



Excerpt: Above Ground by A.M. Harte

The midday sun beat down on werewolf and girl alike, withering the plants, sucking every ounce of moisture from the air. Great clouds of red soil swirled upwards with every beat of the werewolf’s paws, and within minutes Lilith’s cheeks were stinging from the heat and the flecks of grit in the air. She pressed closer to his fur, jostled by each leap, certain she would soon fall.
“Hey!” The wind tore the word out of her mouth. “Hey you! Slow down!”
No response. Ahead there was nothing but open land. A quick glance over her shoulder confirmed Lilith's suspicions: they were going the wrong way. She tugged on the thick fur of Wolf’s neck, trying to steer him towards the cliffs, but either he couldn't feel what she was doing or he was ignoring her.
“Turn around! You’re going the wrong way!”
Wolf flicked back an ear but didn’t stop running. With every passing moment the theatre—her only way back home—faded further into the distance. Unless she wanted to remain stranded in the middle of nowhere, it was time for drastic measures.
This was going to hurt.
She let go of Wolf’s neck. There was no time to think. Lilith threw herself sideways and saw the ground rush up to meet her. Her eyes squeezed shut. The air was kicked out of her, dust rising in a cloud as she tumbled across the sandy soil.
It took a moment for Lilith to realise she had stopped rolling. Dirt choked the inside of her nose and mouth, and her head was still spinning, struggling to catch up. She kept still, winded. Her shoulder ached and the oppressive heat made it almost impossible to move. A tall shrub obstructed her line of sight, yet she could feel Wolf looming.
Lilith flexed her right leg, then the left. Her fingers curled into the dirt, her shoulders rolled obligingly. Nothing broken.
She sat up carefully. Her clothes were streaked with red dust and her palms stung.  She wiped her hands on her jeans as she stood slowly, legs trembling. Then she forced herself to turn around and say, “I asked you to take me home.”
The werewolf ignored her—or, more likely, didn’t understand. He stood still, ears pricked forward, tail up, staring warily in the direction from which they had come. A vast expanse of barren earth separated them from the theatre, its domed roof reflecting the sunlight. At this distance the building was no longer impressive; it was not, as Lilith had initially thought, reaching towards the sky. Instead it huddled at the base of the cliff face, cowering into the ground.
The enormity of the situation struck her: she was above ground.
     This was unchartered territory, the heart of wilderness: the land stretched out uninterrupted in every direction, and the sky above was a flat, endless blue. Not even the largest of caves in the Lower Halls could compare to the infinity of the sky. Even the air was different, drier, as if someone had left the dehumidifier on all night—but up here there were no dehumidifiers. Above ground, there were only monsters.



Above Ground

The first glimpse of sun may be her last.
When Lilith Gray goes above ground for the first time, she hardly expects to stay there — much less be trapped on the surface with no way home.
Hunted by trackers and threatened by the infected, Lilith is on the run, desperate to return underground. Her only hope for survival lies with a taciturn werewolf with a dark agenda of his own.
Lilith’s old carefree life has been reduced to one choice:
Adapt. Or die trying.

Author Bio:

A.M. Harte writes twisted speculative fiction, such as the post-apocalyptic Above Ground and the zombie love anthology Hungry For You. She is excellent at missing deadlines, has long forgotten what ‘free time’ means, and is utterly addicted to chocolate. She lives in London, a city not half as foggy as some seem to think.

You can find her Above Ground blog tour schedule here:  http://amharte.com/aboveground/



RaffleCopter Contest:

6 comments:

kyle said...

Yep, sounds like a good story. I'm going to Good Reads right now to add it to my queue.

A.M. Harte said...

Thanks for hosting me :-)

DarcNina said...

Love the excerpt! Sounds like a great read! :)

Sheila Deeth said...

Great excerpt!

DjTGv said...

Above expectations !

WA_side said...

I like this excerpt as it really draws you into the narrative. I felt like I should be dusting myself down to clean off all the grit and sweat.

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