Friday 29 April 2016

Book Blitz: BAIT by Kasi Blake

Bait (Order of the Spirit Realm #1)
by Kasi Blake
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Release Date: July 25th 2014


After sixteen years on the run, Bay-Lee joins her emotionally distant father at his New Zealand school. On her first night there, he dumps her on the doorstep and walks away. Big surprise. Minutes later, a bag is thrown over her head, and she’s kidnapped for Orientation. The hunter in charge calls her Bait. According to him, that’s all she’s good for, to be used to draw out monsters for experienced hunters to kill. 

Before Bay-Lee can move up to the rank of Hunter, she will have to prove herself, battle wraiths, a reaper in disguise, and a stampeding border monster. With the addition of her classes, she’s going to be way too busy for a social life. Falling in love is not on the agenda. 

Then, she meets Nick Gallos. With the intimidating rank of Warrior, Nick is gorgeous, arrogant, and just plain rude to her. It’s obvious from their first meeting that Nick is hiding a dark past overflowing with secrets, and her father is right smack in the middle of it. Nick seems to be using her to get even with her father, and she won’t tolerate that. What a jerk. 

So, why can’t she stop thinking about him?

Excerpt 1:

Bay-Lee shoved him back against the wall.  Her fingers twisted in his black shirt as she shouted, “I have had enough of your crap!  You are going to mentor me whether you like it or not.  Got it?”
Her dark eyes blazed with the fiery passion missing from his life.  This girl wasn’t afraid of anything.  He squelched his growing admiration for her and shook his head.  It would be better for everyone if he held tight to his anger instead of giving into his desire to kiss her.  He reminded himself that she was the cause of his problems.  “You are delusional.  I’m not doing anything I don’t want to do, and I don’t want to spend a single minute with you.  End of story.”
A few students snickered as they walked past them.  It was enough to convince Bay-Lee to release her hold on his shirt, but she didn’t give him any room to maneuver.  One of the new boys (Jonah) stood in the background, watching them.  As if realizing they weren’t going to get any privacy, Bay-Lee lowered her voice.  “Hey, I didn’t ask you to volunteer.  That was your brilliant idea.  If you hadn’t made a big deal over taking the job, maybe someone else would have.”
He wagged a finger in her face.  “Listen up, sweetheart.  I know you think you’re something special because you’re Van Helsing’s only child, but I am not impressed.  From the moment I saw you that first night I knew you were too soft to last a week here.  You are going to screw up royally and get your butt sent home, and you are not taking me down with you.  I worked too hard for my rank.”
He tried to push past her without knocking her down.
“You’re wrong.”  She stood her ground, not giving an inch.  “I was born for this.”
“Go then.  Go prove it.  Just leave me out of it.  I want less than nothing to do with you.  Now move out of my way.”
“You’re not going anywhere until you agree to do your job.”
He forced a grin while everything in him wanted to smash his fist through the wall behind him.  “Stop embarrassing yourself.  Flattering, really, but I am way too busy to train you.  Van might not know it yet, but he’s about to bring Tyler Beck back to life.  Then I’m out of here.  I don’t want to work with you.  Get that through your thick skull.”
“Too bad.”  Her hands went to her hips and she stared a hole through his face, unblinking and unflinching.
“Excuse me?”  He crossed his arms.
“You said you were going to mentor me and you are.  Deal with it.”
He pushed away from the wall and leaned forward until his face was a mere inch from hers.  Slowly he enunciated two words.  “Make me.”
Hands on her shoulders, he lifted her off the ground, turned, and deposited her on the other side of him.  The look of shock on her face melted into boiling rage.  He wouldn’t be surprised if she took a swing at him.
“You don’t think I can, but you are so wrong, Tyler.”
The name of his alter-ego slipped off her tongue, drenched in irony, and the sound of it stopped him from walking away.  She threw down an invisible gauntlet, daring him to pick it up.  No longer cute, the girl was getting on his last nerve.  He decided to meet her on the mental battlefield with guns blazing.  “I’d love to see you try to make me do anything, Michelle.”
Using her last alias, the name she’d been going by when they’d first met seemed to throw her off balance.  She blinked.  He had her on the ropes now.  Grinning with triumph because he was going to win this battle, he continued.
“No, wait.  Michelle is all wrong for you.  That’s the name of someone strong and capable of taking care of themselves.  You’re cute and cuddly like a harmless bunny.  I think I’ll call you Micki.  So what do you say, Micki?  How long before you wash out of the program?”
If anything, she stood taller and poked him in the chest with one finger.  “I’m not going anywhere, Tyler.  This is your last chance to give in without getting hurt.  Agree to mentor me or prepare to be sorry.”
He opened his mouth to tell her to go jump in Van’s lake and drown herself.  A bloodcurdling scream ripped through the hallway.  Fight forgotten, they raced down the empty corridor.  Nick moved faster, running ahead of Bay-Lee, but he could hear her feet pounding the floor behind him.  He didn’t have a weapon on him.  If it was something bad, a monster in the school, they were in trouble.

Excerpt 2:

The snarling beast prepared to charge.  A clawed foot pawed at the dirt, stirring up a cloud of dust.  Black eyes partially hidden beneath a mass of unruly brown fur stared at her.  Its enormous square head tilted to the side.  The thing looked like a cross between a wooly mammoth and an alien from a scary movie.
Nick jumped to his feet while shouting a warning at her.  Glued to the ground, she couldn’t move.  Cold fear held her in a tight grip.  He caught her arm, hauled her to her feet, and dragged her with him.  The heavy tromp of footsteps thundered behind them.  The border monster was coming.  It would overtake them at any second.
Bay-Lee cringed, expecting to be impaled on sharp horns.
They ran through the forest, dodging trees in a mad dash.  Nick’s hand slipped on her arm and he almost let go.  His grip tightened around her wrist.  She forced her legs to move faster, desperate to keep up with him.  The hairy beast leaped over their heads and slammed down in front of them even though she would have bet the thing was too enormous to jump that high.  The ground shook as if they were caught in an earthquake.  A cloud of dust enveloped them like a post nuclear mushroom cloud.
Nick’s dagger was gone, lost in the hole, so he picked up a broken branch to use as a weapon.  It was thick and long with a sharp pointy end.  His eyes shone with manic excitement.  He shouted at Bay-Lee.  “Stay out of the way!”
The border monster charged them, but Nick darted to the right.  He moved so fast Bay-Lee didn’t have time to think.  Avoiding the shadows, Nick kept to the light so it could see him.  The monster changed course.  Head bent, it tried to flatten Nick.  He leaped into the air at the last second.  The monster’s head scooped him up.  Nick landed on its back.  One of his hands tangled in the long matted hair, using it to hang on, while his other hand brandished the branch like a sword.  He looked like a man riding a rampaging elephant. 
He shouted a warning to her, telling her to hug a tree.  It was the only safe place.  She wanted to help him slay the thing, but she didn’t know anything about border monsters.  They hadn’t gotten to them yet in Maxx’s class.
Bay-Lee wrapped her arms around the nearest tree and held on tight.  If she didn’t move, the thing wouldn’t be able to see her.  She wished she hadn’t left her cell phone in her room.  Nick was going to die, and there wasn’t anything she could do to stop it.  Now she wished she’d gone for help instead of following him into the woods.
Nick drove the sharp tip of the branch into the monster’s back.  Howling in pain and anger, the thing stood on two legs, freaking her out.  Apparently this was another thing she didn’t know about border monsters.  They could stand on four legs or two.  It reached around, grabbed Nick by his ankle, and ripped him free.  The thing lifted him high in the air.  It was going to slap the ground with him, breaking bones and causing massive internal injuries.
Without giving it a thought Bay-Lee ran at the giant monster.  Desperation drove her to action.  She hit it with a flying kick.  Surprised, the monster dropped Nick.  He executed a summersault and rolled away from the fight.  The border monster turned in her direction.  She retreated fast, blending in with the trees.  As long as she wasn’t moving and wasn’t in the light, it couldn’t see her.
The border monster bent forward and sniffed, trying to catch her scent.  When it exhaled, the heavy whoosh of air blew hair around her face, momentarily obstructing her vision.  Her nose itched.  She clenched her fists and fought the urge to scratch.  She remained frozen, refusing to even blink.  The monster was not going to trick her into moving, no matter what it did.  Her fingers dug into the tattered bark of the tree.  A silent scream lodged in her throat, searching for an exit.  If the monster didn’t get out of her face soon, she might lose control and release the scream.
Nick laughed.  The sound seemed to infuriate the monster.  It whipped around, ready to finish crunching Nick to dust.  The monster charged at him.  Nick brought the branch around in an arcing sweep and plunged it into the monster’s gut.  The thing staggered backwards before crashing forward.  It was going to fall on top of Nick.  He lurched to the side, trying to get out of the way, but he wasn’t fast enough.  The monster fell.

Excerpt 3:

“Rock star Tyler Beck is dead at the age of twenty,” the news anchor said, unable to keep a drop of excitement from her voice.  “A nationwide manhunt for Bad-Rock’s front-man ended in tragedy earlier this evening when Beck lost control of his vehicle during a high speed police chase.  Band members could not be reached for comment.  Their publicist has issued the following statement.”
Bay-Lee frowned in her sleep.  Horrible images infiltrated her mind, twisted metal and a body burned beyond recognition.  The frown deepened.  She had fallen asleep with the television on again.  It was the only logical reason for the intrusion of a loud female voice.  Her hand slapped around the mattress, blindly searching for the remote in the fervent hope she wouldn’t have to open her eyes.
The news anchor read the statement.
“Tyler’s family and close friends request privacy and understanding in this difficult time as they grieve for a talented life cut too short.  Although Tyler was accused of a horrendous crime earlier this week, we are confident his name will be cleared.  In the meantime, we ask that...”
Giving in to the inevitable, Bay-Lee parted her eyelids in a painful squint.  Light from the television nearly blinded her.  Her head snapped around so she was facing the darkened side of her room.  The remote was on the nightstand next to the alarm clock.  Grabbing it, she switched the set off.
Cool darkness settled over her bedroom, bringing instant relief.  She closed her eyes again and breathed easier.  Silence gave her a much needed break.  Her uncle must have gone to bed.
The news anchor’s words took a second trip through her mind.
They had been talking about Tyler Beck on the late night news.  That’s why she’d been dreaming about him.  Mystery solved.  There wasn’t anything wrong with her that couldn’t be fixed by turning off the TV before going to bed.
For an entire week his face had haunted her.  A person couldn’t turn on a television or pick up a magazine without seeing his image.  Following a Sold Out concert last Friday night he had gone to a party thrown in his honor, and he’d massacred sixteen of his biggest fans.  What sort of person murdered their own fans?
According to police there was enough evidence to convict.  There was a video on the Internet that had gone viral—five million hits in one day.  It was shot by a teen outside the club and clearly showed Tyler exiting the party before police surrounded him.
The rock star had been running from the law ever since.
She sighed, a hundred percent awake now.  Frustrated, she kicked at the sheet and struggled to get comfortable after repeatedly punching her pillow.  Stupid Tyler Beck.  She was sick of hearing his name, and now the jerk was apparently going to ruin a good night’s sleep with his sudden demise.  Ridiculous.  Before this week she hadn’t even noticed he was alive, and now she couldn’t stop thinking about him.

Bait is FREE! 

About the Author
Born and raised in California, I fell in love with writing while reading The Outsiders. Then I fell in love with Stephen King's writing style. I enjoy reading many types of books, but YA Paranormal is my favorite. I used to write for Harlequin under a different name. So that's my background. Exciting, no?

I have seven books out now: Vampires Rule, Werewolves Rule,Shifters Rule, Crushed, Witch Hunt, Bait, and my only adult novel, a romantic suspense called Pandora's Box. 

Author Links:
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