by Amy Loosemore, Harlequin.com Team
Are you a gamer? Do you love the excitement of entering another world when you play? But what if you weren’t just enjoying the vicarious thrill of playing as your favorite character in a game — what if you were one?
That’s just what Claudia discovers in Jen Alexander’s new YA novel from Harlequin TEEN, Aftermath. Intrigued? Keep reading for an excerpt from the book, and pick up your copy of Aftermath, on sale now, to find out what Claudia does next after her world-shattering discovery…
About the Book:
A girl with dark hair who doesn’t worry about hunger or thirst or running from flesh-eaters.
In her world, those sorts of things don’t exist….
Since the spring of 2036, when the world changed forever, Claudia and a small clan of survivors have roamed the streets of a very altered Nashville—polluted and desolate, except for the ever-present threat of cannibals. Together they must undergo punishing tests of endurance and psychological challenge—sometimes with devastating consequences—all just to live another day.
With food and water in dwindling supply, and with danger lurking around every corner, no one can be trusted. And as her world starts to make less and less sense, Claudia begins to realize something terrifying: she is just a pawn in some sort of game, and all of her actions are being controlled from afar by a mysterious gamer. So when she meets a maddening and fascinating outsider named Declan, who claims to be a game moderator, she must decide whether to join him in exchange for protection and access to the border.
If they play the game right, they are each other’s best hope for survival—and a life beyond the only world Claudia’s ever known: the terrifying live-action game known as The Aftermath.
I can smell a storm coming in. It’s an earthy scent that I can’t ignore, especially when we’re running low on water and I can almost feel the raw ache of thirst in the back of my throat. We need the rain.
I draw in a deep breath to make sure I’m not imagining the scent, but now it’s even stronger, intermingling with the decayed odor of a music shop that caught fire last week.
A few days ago, after we’d raided the little souvenir store across the street from it, something had driven me to go inside. I’d found what was left of two Survivors within the remains of the building, lying side by side on a bed of smashed records and charred instruments with their fingers interlocking.
Focus on the rain, Virtue. Not on death.