Thursday, April 30, 2015

Timeloopers: An Infinite Loop, Teaser #2

Hi readers!

Here’s the second and final teaser for An Endless Loop, the third book in the Timelooper’s series, which hits shelves May 7!

Teaser #2
It was odd the details Cory noticed first.

The matching satin lapels of their tuxedo jackets, the identical pleating of their shirts, the asshole-ish look of his face. In his drunken stupor, Cory’s first thought was that he’d actually run into a mirror right on the dance floor.

Because he was staring at himself.

The other him looked thinner, cheeks sallow, hair longer by an inch so it swept past the corner of his eyes. He wore the exact same tuxedo.

“Whoa,” Cory said, swaying a little now he wasn’t dancing with Pris. “It’s me. Hey everybody, it’s me.”

A few kids nearby had noticed, formed a circle around them. They jostled each other and muttered their amazement.

The image of his past self tilted and blurred as the room spun in circles. He couldn’t focus on the details.

But that was the alcohol, not the effects of time travel.

Speaking of time travel . . .

The other Cory didn’t flicker.

He just stood there, looking too terrified to speak.

“Are you from the future or past?” Cory slurred, trying to keep his balance. The room seemed to recede away from him as he spoke, like he was falling backward down a long tunnel.

How many drinks had he had?

Oooooh.

Finally, his double spoke, his voice a strained whisper. “You didn’t see me . . . you’re not seeing me right now.” He backed away.

“No, no, no, stay for five minutes,” said Cory. “I’ve always wanted to talk to my past.”

“I’m not your past, dumbshit.”

“You sound like that annoying voice in my head,” said Cory. “I don’t have to listen to you. You’re me. You have to listen to me. If you’re really from the future, why aren’t you getting feedback, huh?”

“Because I don’t remember any of this,” he said. “I blacked out the night of homecoming. You blacked out. You had like twenty drinks.”

Suddenly, Cory realized what seeing his double meant, and an icy chill pierced his buzz. It meant he had already gone back in time, he had already tried to save Iris . . . and failed.

He still remembered her climbing into the Chronos, vanishing before his eyes, the police interrogating him. He still remembered the heartbreak of seeing her empty seat in class.

He hadn’t changed anything.

“It doesn’t work,” he whispered. “You didn’t save her.”

Cory stared at him, his eyes wide. Slowly, he shook his head. “I . . . I need to go.”

“Why didn’t you save her?” Cory’s voice broke.

His double scanned the dance floor, eyes frantic, looking for something.

“What? . . . Wha’sss behind me?” Cory craned his neck to see.

In a flash, the other Cory grabbed his head and wrenched it toward the floor. “You stay . . . stay . . . do not follow, do not look up, do not look at me, do not look at anything . . . do not change anything.”

Cory shoved him off, and his double winced, as if burned.

“Why doesn’t it work?” he cried. “Why didn’t you save her? You were supposed to save her—”

Don’t,” warned the other Cory, backing away. “Just don’t.” Then he vanished into the crowd, leaving him with a desperate, hollow feeling.

It didn’t work.

“Wait!” he called, staggering after his future self. “I need answers . . . what was her secret? Tell me, you selfish prick!” He bulldozed through the dance floor, slammed into a wall of bodies, and crashed to the floor. He dragged himself to his feet, head spinning, and stumbled after his double.

Around him, the world faded to black.


And then he didn’t remember what happened after that.

***


Happy reading!
Dan

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Timeloopers: An Infinite Loop, Teaser #1

Next Thursday An Infinite Loop, the third novel in the Timelooper’s series, comes out, and guys, I’m so excited to share this book with you. In honor of An Infinite Loop’s release, here’s the first teaser from the book:

Teaser #1
So, to Iris’s supreme delight, they crossed town and spent the night shivering under Cory’s sleeping bag at some sketchy little pond. Friday night fell with an overcast sky and a frozen breeze, which slipped right under the polyester and over her bare thighs—she didn’t have a spare change of clothes, so she’d been forced to wear the same pair of cutoff shorts the whole time and wash it every few days at the Chapmans’ house.
Her teeth chattered, and another violent shiver jerked through her torso.
God damn, it was cold.
Cory’s body radiated heat a few feet away, but she refused to edge closer to him. She had, however, conceded to wearing his hoodie—which counted as a fail.
The thing reeked of so much cologne you’d think he washed it in the stuff. She knew she wouldn’t catch a wink of sleep tonight. But that had more to do with the fact that he was sleeping right next to her. Literally under the same square of fabric. At one point, their bodies touched, her hip to his elbow, and she scrambled to the other side in a flurry of swooshing polyester and tumbled into the weeds.
“Chill,” he said.
“I thought you were asleep?” she said.
“Not with you freaking out every five seconds.”
“You touched me.”
“Yeah, sorry if that made you wet.”
Fuming, Iris turned her back to him and yanked his hoodie down over her knees, now clutched to her chest.
“Really?” he said. “No snarky response?”
“It doesn’t deserve a response.”
“You’re doing great, babe.” He gave her butt a pat.
She squirmed away from him and threw off the sleeping bag. “Stop touching me,” she said, her voice full of threat.
“This is stupid,” said Cory, sitting up. “We’re not going to sleep like this.”
“No duh,” she said.
“Let’s just stay up. It’s our last night.”
Iris peered around the black wetlands. The creek gurgled somewhere off to their right, behind a rustling, scratching knot of bushes. “I’m hungry,” she said.
“Protein bar?” Cory opened a wrapper for himself. “Oh, wait. This is the last one.”
“Asshole.”
“Here, I’ll let you have a bite.”
She hit his hand away. “I don’t want your charity.”
“Suit yourself.” He shrugged and dug into the bar, sighing with pleasure as his teeth sank into it. Her stomach growled painfully, and she had to avert her eyes.
“Mmm, sooo good,” he taunted, making a show of eating it right in front of her. “Oh man . . . all that chocolate and peanut butter, it’s like an orgasm in your mouth . . . mmm . . . Still want that bite?”
“Go fuck yourself.”
Chewing loudly, he continued to moan. “Mmm, mmm, mhhhmm—”
In one swift motion, she snatched the protein bar out of his mouth and bolted into the woods, where she shoved the whole thing in her mouth and, with difficulty, chewed and swallowed.
“Hey fatso, you got chocolate all over your face,” he said, when she returned to the sleeping bag a minute later.
“Want to know what you have on your face?” she said. “A whole lot of ugly.”
“Aww, come on, why you got to be mean?”
She dropped down next to him, muttering, “Twenty-four more hours, just twenty-four more hours. I can do this.”
“You’re still my friend, right?”
“No.”
“Was it the protein bar?”
Iris studied the faint lights of homes flickering between branches, reminding her they still were still in the middle of a city, still weren’t safe.
This were hiding in a park, and tomorrow was Saturday, and on Saturday people went to parks.
“How do you know about this place?” she said.
“I came here with Samantha once, way back in sophomore year.”
“Huh. Were you guys dating or something?”
“Nah, it was just some stupid thing.”
“So . . . she knows about this place?”
“Yeah, but she’s not going to come here,” he scoffed. “Tomorrow’s homecoming. She’s going to doing her makeup and her nails and her hair and everything else for the dance. The timing couldn’t be better. Trust me, Iris, no one’s going to find us here.”

***



Happy reading,
Dan

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Timeloopers: The Ghost at Retreat Lake, Teaser #2

This is a quick post, but I wanted to drop by and share teaser #2 from The Ghost at Retreat Lake, the second book in the Timeloopers series! 

Teaser #2
To save her and Cory’s lives, Iris had to travel back inside the machine herself. Nothing else would work.
Her heart gave off sickening tremors. She stabbed her pencil through the crime scene tape, severed the ribbons, and her sweaty fingers went to the latch, unclicked it. The front panel swung open, revealing the musty interior of the machine.
The sharp odor of disinfectant wafted out, stung her nostrils. And beneath that, ammonia. Her upper lip curled.
At last, her eyes adjusted to the darkness, and a wave of goosebumps ascended her arms.
A dusty black box. Empty. Three feet wide, three feet deep, six feet tall.
Room to stand or sit. Not to lie down.
Nine hours in there.
A nervous shudder seized her body, and her lungs fought to draw in oxygen.
She couldn’t do this.
No way.
No fucking way.
But she had to.
Her throat worked through a dry, painful swallow. But . . . travel back in time? What would that do to her body? To human tissue? Surely it would rip her apart, not to mention the horrible paradoxes, the risk of running into her past self . . .
Oh God.
There would be two of her at the same time—a past and a future version. She would have to hide until the other one went back in time on her own accord. What if the other one didn’t? What if she changed something, and the other version didn’t get into the Chronos? She’d have to hide forever, live as a ghost . . . or would she have to kill the other version of herself?
No, no, no, she had it all wrong. Paradoxes like that couldn’t happen, she’d get feedback and wouldn’t be able to stop the other version of her from going back in time.
Wait. She was that other version. Right now, at this very moment, another Iris was out there praying that she got in the Chronos.
She didn’t have a choice.
Nine hours in a coffin. Well, it couldn’t suck any more than a transatlantic flight . . . could it?
Yeah, just like flying to Paris.
Except she didn’t have her Kindle. Lost in the fire. Which meant nothing to read, nothing to entertain herself. The boredom would drive her insane. And nothing to snack on, nothing to drink, nowhere to go—
Her eyes flew wide open.
“Oh, hell no . . .” She yanked out her phone. The clock still read 8:13 p.m.
Still time.
It changed to 8:14. One minute.
Frantic, she glanced around the teachers’ lounge, counting off a minute in her mind. One . . . two . . . three . . .
Up against the wall, a table bore a microwave, an ancient coffee maker. Underneath the table squatted a mini fridge.
Bingo. She scrambled across the room, yanked open the fridge. No power. Just empty racks.
Seven . . . eight . . .
“C’monnnn,” she moaned, slamming the fridge. Back in the shadows, something wobbled. Its glint caught her eye.
An empty Gatorade bottle.
Good enough. She grabbed the bottle and sprinted up the stairs, burst into the dark hallway.
Eleven . . . twelve . . . thirteen . . .
She made a beeline for the first science lab, for a sink, wrenched open the bottle cap, shoved it under the faucet.
Twenty . . . twenty-one . . .
With a crank, water gushed into the bottle and overflowed onto her hand. Done. She capped it off, and darted back to the basement, the still air whistling past her ears.
She pulled to a stop in front of the Chronos, gasping for breath, hadn’t even reached thirty. Not bad. The track team could suck it.
Still panting, she climbed into the Chronos—like climbing into a broom closet—and pulled the front panel shut behind her. The pitch black made her gasp.
Zero light.
The cramped space only amplified her pulse, until it sounded like a bass drum right inside her ear. Instantly, sweat broke out on her skin.
Nine hours in here . . .
Then she heard it. A high pitched tone coasting down to a gentle throb. From inside the Chronos, it sounded terrifying, and her stomach squeezed into a tight knot. She waited for the click.
It never came.
Instead, a sudden spurt of electricity pulsed through her body, leaving her fingers tingling, her ears ringing, her thoughts muddled. Then the tone began climbing again, spinning faster and faster until it faded again into the ultrasonic range.
But no click.
In fact, no sound at all came from outside.
Just the rhythmic throb of the time machine around her, droning on and on, stretching out and perpetually seeming to slow to zero but never quite reaching it.
Just silence.
No click? Had the machine even started?
She pressed the front panel. It didn’t budge. She pressed harder. It really didn’t budge. She lowered her shoulder and slammed against it. Might as well have slammed a granite wall. Not a millimeter of give. Her breath cut off in panic.
Locked in.
No, worse than that. Her body had just been inputted into the Chronos, into a parallel quantum state, cut off from the rest of the world, from which she would be unable to escape until the output click nine hours ago.
She was now travelling back in time.
***


Happy reading!
Dan

Monday, April 27, 2015

Timeloopers: The Ghost at Retreat Lake, Teaser #1


Teaser #1
“Yo,” said Cory from the doorway, startling her. He wandered in toward her bunk and leaned against her bed frame.
She hurriedly wiped her face. “Let me guess,” she said, her voice poison, “you came to say sorry?”
Or had he come to torment her more?
“No,” he said. “I just want to make sure you’re not going to slit your wrists.”
Torment her more it was.
“Fuck off.”
“Noah said I should apologize to you.”
“Oh, do you not know what the word apologize means?” she said. “Poor baby. Maybe you should look it up in a dictionary. In fact, here, I’ll help you—” She grabbed her Kindle and navigated to the dictionary. “Look, here it is. Verb, intransitive. To express regret for doing or saying something wrong.” She looked up. “Funny, that seems oddly appropriate for this moment—”
“Should I go?”
“—then again you’d actually have to feel regret, which you’re entirely incapable of doing. You know, apologize might be a little advanced for you. Why don’t we start with something simpler, like the word sorry. You ever heard of that one? Here, I’ll help you.” She looked it up. “Sorry—adjective, predicate. Feeling sorrow or regret. Used to express polite regret. Used to introduce disappointing or bad news in a polite way. Polite . . . now there’s a new one for you. Let’s look it up.”
“You done yet?” he said.
“Polite. Having or showing good manners or respect for other people. Wow. This is really groundbreaking stuff, Cory, you might want to read this.”
He backed up. “I’ll go.”
She tossed her Kindle aside and glared at him. “You’re really not even going to say it,” she said in disbelief. “Not even a simple I’m sorry?”
“For what, Iris?”
“For embarrassing me. For insulting me. For making me feel like a total loser in front of all your friends.”
“You could have friends too, you know. It’s not impossible. Even for you.”
“See, you can’t even open your mouth without saying something rude. Why are you in my cabin? There are thirty other brainless little tramps at this lake you can go pester, and you’re in my cabin.”
“Exactly,” he said. “Why would I talk to them when I can hang out with the one girl who hates my guts?”
“Right. I forgot how much you lust after what you can’t have.”
“Seriously, you need to lighten up on your attitude,” he said.
She gaped at him. “Me? I need to lighten up?”
“Last I checked, you’re the one everybody hates,” he said. “Want to know why? Because you’re like ice, you snub them, you think you’re better than them, and that hits them right here—” He thumped his chest, his heart. “That’s why no one likes you, because you’re a snob to them. You’ve always been a snob to them.”
Her jaw fell open.
“I’m seeing a dumb look on your face, I’ll help you out.” He swung around the bunk bed and grabbed her Kindle, tapped the screen. “Snob,” he read, “someone who tends to criticize, reject, or ignore people who come from a lower class, have less education, etcetera. Example—Iris is a pretentious snob who scorns anyone who’s not a genius like she thinks she is.”
“It doesn’t say that,” she said, lunging for the Kindle. “Give it back.”
He held it out of reach. “Iris, they don’t just forget about how you used to be when you show up first day of school all decked out in American Eagle. In fact, you made it worse. Now guys are intimidated by you and girls feel threatened, because all this used to be their territory and you’re walking all over it without even realizing what you’re doing. You went from having no friends to making enemies. Sound familiar?”
“Congratulations. Genius golden boy has it all figured out.” Iris tried to yank the Kindle from his grip, but he held on. She pried his fingers off one by one.
He held on to the last pinky finger, then swooped in with his other hand and dragged the Kindle behind his back, sitting down on the lower bunk to keep it away from her. “Nuh-uh-uh.”
Oh, this fucker. She leapt behind him, but he just handed it off to the front. “You know I’m faster than you. And stronger, and smarter, and—”
Iris looped her arm around his neck and locked him in a chokehold, cutting off the rest of his stupid taunt. She wrenched her other arm tight, clamping her elbow around his windpipe. “Drop it,” she said.
“Iris . . .” he croaked.
“Drop it.”
“Can’t . . . breathe . . .”
“Drop it, Cory.”
He flailed and scratched at her arms. She tightened her grip, and his struggles weakened. Take that, bitch. At last the Kindle clattered to the floor. She let go, and his limp body fell out of her arms and slumped sideways on the bed, unconscious. Asshole.
“Now get out of my room.” She planted her foot on his lower back and nudged him toward the edge of the bed with her heel.
He didn’t wake up.
“Cory?” she said.
He didn’t move.
A spark of panic flared under her skin.
She shook his shoulders. Nothing.
“Cory . . . Cory . . .” Her voice grew desperate. Oh, God. She’d held on too long, cut off the blood supply to his brain.
What if . . . what if she’d killed him?
Her eyes darted around the room, and a terrified dread settled over her. What do I do?
CPR. Mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
Yuck.
No way. Forget it.

***


Happy reading,
Dan

Friday, April 17, 2015

Timeloopers: A Strange Machine Teaser #2

Hi readers!

I’m doing a quick drop in to give you teaser #2 from A Strange Machine, now on sale for $0.99 on Amazon. Click here to check it out! 

Teaser #2
Mid-morning sunlight streamed into Cory’s bedroom and tugged him out of sleep. He rolled over and blocked the heat with his pillow, wishing the sun came with a snooze button.
What time had he gone to sleep last night?
He still wore his jeans and a T-shirt. He must have passed out before he could undress—
Samantha.
He sat bolt upright and peered around his room, now ablaze in sunlight, a hollow forming in the pit of his stomach. Last night . . . she never showed up.
Weird.
He checked his phone. Out of batteries. Cursing, he dragged himself off his bed and plugged it in. Idiot. She’d probably waited outside and called him after he fell asleep. A dull ache spread through his chest. What if he’d lost his chance with her?
He had to call her.
His phone powered up, and a flood of text messages and voicemails registered on the screen.
Anneliese: Did you get my message? Call me back.
Noah: Heard about Sam. Nothing you could have done, man. I’m here if you need to talk.
Anneliese: Cory, call me back as soon as can.
Iris: I heard what happened. I am so sorry, Cory.
Cory stared at the messages, a growing sense of dread knotting his insides. The clang of his heart sounded hollow and echoey.
He moved on to the voicemails.
The first from Anneliese.
He raised the phone to his ear, hand trembling.
“Cory, it’s Anneliese, it’s Samantha, she’s—” her voice choked off in a sob, “she tried to drive Dante’s car over to your house last night . . . she was in an accident . . .” She sobbed again, sniffled. “She was on something he gave her, I don’t know what, she skidded out at the cemetery—at Aurora and 115th. Samantha, she’s . . . she’s dead. Cory, he thinks it’s your fault—Dante—he’s coming after you. I don’t know what he’s going to do. But you need to get out of your house. I’m sorry, Cory.”
The phone dropped from Cory’s hand. His insides had twisted up into a quivering ball.
No, it couldn’t be.
His heart hammered against his sternum.
It wasn’t possible. Anneliese was wrong. She had to be wrong. Sam was okay. She was in a hospital now, hurt, but okay. She was okay. Please be okay . . .
He couldn’t fathom the loss.
Samantha . . . gone.
***

Happy reading,
Dan

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Timeloopers: A Strange Machine Teaser #1

The third novel in the Timeloopers series, An Infinite Loop, is coming out May 7, and in honor of its release, Im hosting giveaways and sharing teasers from the series. Today is the first of those teasers! 

For those of you unfamiliar with the series, it’s about what happens when a group of teens at one of Seattle’s elite private schools discover a way to travel back in time. Timeloopers: A Strange Machine, is currently on sale for $0.99! You check it out here! 

    


***Teaser #1***

Iris felt everyone staring at her.
She peered around the classroom full of girls, cheerleaders and popular girls, all gaping at her.
Suddenly, she felt intensely self-conscious about her long hair, still swaying behind her from her race to Moore Hall. Like an imposter.
People expected Iris in sweatpants and her older brother’s ill-fitting T-shirts, her hair tied in a ponytail, forgotten—because she didn’t give a crap about her looks. Never had.
She felt exposed in the shorts and tight tank top. Showing too much skin, like she was on display.
In the usual gray drab she wore, she always blended in. No one paid attention, no one stared, no one ogled. No one noticed. And right now, standing in the spotlight on the first day of school, she desperately wanted that back.
God, did all girls who dress like this feel this way?
She felt gross in her own body. Everyone was certainly looking at her like she was gross.
Wait . . . all girls? In an Advanced Physics class?
In what universe?
She felt her lip curl and was about to back out, figuring she’d stumbled into Home Ec or something, when Mr. Dajani came out of his office with a stack of worksheets.
Huh?
She peered around the room again. And that’s when she saw him. In the back, slouching in his seat like he thought he was some kind of bad boy . . . As if. Her cheek twitched.
Cory Holland.
Always better than her by a hair. A percentage point. A single answer on a test. And always so damn cocky about it, acting like it didn’t even matter to him. Pretentious, spoiled, snot-nosed Cory Holland.
Well, not this year.
“Oh, Iris,” said Mr. Dajani, doing a double take. “Didn’t recognize you at first. You know, I thought you’d be in this class, but I didn’t see your name on the roster.”
“Yeah, the office screwed up,” she said, ignoring the stares. “So I need your permission.”
“Well, we’ve already picked partners and seventeen is an odd number . . . so why don’t we have you join one of the pairs and make a group of three.”
Iris risked a glance at the students. In some ways, the looks of pure terror Mr. Dajani’s statement had elicited were grimly satisfying.
“Aha, you’ll join Cory and Noah,” he said. “That group needs a little estrogen.”
“Fuck,” she breathed.
“Excuse me?”
“I said . . . um, luck. What luck, you know, that I get to work with the oh-so-brilliant Cory Holland.”
“Ah. Have a seat, Iris.”
This day just kept getting better and better. She stomped to the back of the room and dropped into the one open seat next to Cory, noting the particularly narrow eyes of Samantha Silver.
Yep. Everyone hates me now.
***

Enjoyed that? Then be sure to click here and check out A Strange Machine on Amazon!

Happy reading,
Dan


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

News on The Timeloopers Series

Hey readers! 


For all you Timeloopers fans, I have some great news: the third book in the series, An Infinite Loop, comes out May 7, 2015! You can pre-order your copy here.

Pre-orders are important to authors because they help increase our visibility before a book hits the shelves, so I’m going to make this fun for all parties involved. For every five books of Timeloopers: An Infinite Loop that are pre-ordered, I will be giving away a $5.00 Amazon gift card on my Facebook page! You can find my Facebook page here.

Since many of you are not familiar with my Timeloopers series, I’ll be focusing on the first book, A Strange Machine, this week, the second book, The Ghost at Retreat Lake, and the upcoming third book in the series, An Infinite Loop, the week before its release. What does this mean? You’ll get to read excerpts, and you’ll have the chance to win copies of all three books (as well as those $5.00 Amazon gift cards)! 

Did I mention that the first book, Timeloopers: A Strange Machine, is on sale for $0.99? You can check it out here!

Happy reading!
Dan



Thursday, April 2, 2015

Translucent is Out Now!

… And I forgot to post this. Translucent, the first book in my YA science fiction series that deals with invisibility, is now available on Amazon! (I was getting married—I got a wee bit distracted!) :) You can check it out here on Amazon.

Translucent is a little different than some of my other novels in that the story is much darker. It’s not, my friends, for the faint of heart. But I hope you enjoy this trip with Leona. It’s got meteorites, romance, aliens, superpowers, and a murder most foul. Below I’ve included the book’s description.

Happy reading!
Dan

Translucent

When a meteorite falls near her campsite in the San Rafael Wilderness, troubled teen Leona Hewitt ventures down into the crater looking for a souvenir. What she discovers changes her life. 

Contained in the meteorite is a sticky, mucous-like fluid that bends light, cannot itself be seen, and seems to grow in the presence of living tissue. It’s drawn to her. 

But when a government team arrives in hazmat suits and cordons off the meteorite impact site, Leona questions her decision to take it home with her. For one thing, there are rumors of an extraterrestrial threat. 

For another, it has been speaking to her. 

It wants to be worn . . . stretched on like a second skin. It’s seeking out her weaknesses, exploiting her deepest fear—that the only boy she’s ever loved will unearth the vile secret in her past and see her as a monster. Now it promises salvation. 

It can make her invisible. 


Buy Translucent now on Amazon!