Hunted. Kidnapped. Bled. Destiny can be dangerous...
Skylar Reid's world has been turned upside down. Sasha, the little girl Skylar baby-sits, is kidnapped and believed to be murdered. Then Dana, a girl with extreme abilities, roars into town on a motorcycle, claiming Sasha has been taken by the Organization because a hormone in her blood gives her special abilities. To top it all off, Dana says Skylar has the hormone too. When they discover Sasha might still be alive, all bets are off. The teens must race to uncover the Organization and rescue Sasha...before it's too late.
About the Author
Date of Birth:1960
Education:Attended Boston University
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By Suzanne Brockmann, Melanie Brockmann
Sourcebooks, Inc.Copyright © 2014 Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann
All rights reserved.
I had not been under the impression that trophy wives owned guns.
Of course, my impression of a lot of things had been changing lately, so the idea of a homicidal contortionist with a designer handbag and a vanity license plate that read DRSWIFEY was, surprisingly, not very surprising at all.
"What's up with Little Miss Sunshine?" Calvin mumbled to me, tapping my forearm with his hand as we made our way to the front doors of the Sav'A'Buck supermarket. He motioned with his head for me to look behind him, and I glanced over at the lady. Huge, fake-looking boobs and even larger sunglasses. I doubted she needed them at nine o'clock at night ... the sunglasses, that is. It was September in Florida, but come on.
"Dunno," I answered, picking up my pace a little bit. I was eager to get inside the store. Even without the sun, the humidity made the air feel like it was about ninety thousand degrees. I had a bad case of swamp butt, and my jean shorts were sticking to my backside uncomfortably.
Calvin laughed as I fixed my wedgie with an apparently less-than-discreet swipe. "Could you fix mine too? It's really bad. Horrible," he said, lifting himself halfway off the seat of his electric wheelchair.
I socked him once in the bicep. "Punk."
The linoleum floors of the Sav'A'Buck were sticky, and the place smelled like pig grease and stale cigarettes. But that's what we got for venturing outside our pristine gated community and driving across the proverbial tracks into neighboring Harrisburg to the only place open after nine.
"Man, you really want to buy food from here?" Calvin grumbled, while two small kids whisked in front of us, barefoot, their faces coated with melted purple ice pop. The woman working register four turned around, her disastrous mullet matched only by the disapproving frown she offered Calvin and me as we strolled by.
Neither of us accepted it.
"We're making s'mores," I insisted, my resolve strong. It had been a hellish week, and I wanted something chocolate. We had driven all the way out here; we weren't turning back now.
Calvin rolled his eyes. "Come on," he said, steering himself sharply toward the right. "Cookies and crackers. Aisle seven."
I followed behind him, breaking into a trot to keep up with his chair.
But Calvin pressed his brake and we nearly collided. "There she is again," he hissed, tapping my hand furiously. "Doesn't she creep you out, even a little?"
Little Miss Sunshine, as Calvin had called her, was busy inspecting the nutrition information on the backs of two different bags of corn chips. Her long, blond hair was swept up in an elegant French chignon. She hadn't bothered to take off her sunglasses.
I scooped up a box of graham crackers and left the aisle. Calvin followed me this time.
Once the woman was out of earshot, I told him, "The only weird thing about her is that she looks like she's rolling in dough, unlike most Sav'A'Buck customers." I shrugged. "But we probably stick out here too." I found the aisle for candy and grabbed a humongous bag of chocolate. "So give her a break."
Calvin acknowledged his two-hundred-dollar polo shirt and shrugged. "Eh, you're right," he replied, and popped his collar.
"That's lame, by the way," I said, and found an empty basket to dump my purchases into.
"What?" Calvin replied, his expression one of mock offense. "Girl, you are just jealous because you can't pull off the look."
"Sooo jealous," I replied sarcastically. I was perfectly happy in my jean shorts and plain black tank top. Nobody needed to know my mom had spent a fortune for both articles of clothing. If it were up to me, I'd wear clothes from the local consignment shop, thank you very much. People were going hungry these days, and obviously many of them were right here in Harrisburg. That was way creepier, IMO, than Little Miss Sunshine jonesing for cheap, salty grease.
Calvin poked his nose into my basket. "Would you mind telling me exactly how white girls from the north make s'mores? Where I come from, we use marshmallows."
"Dammit!" I'd forgotten to grab a bag when we were in the candy aisle.
"Come on," Calvin replied, and reached for my basket. He set it atop his lap and followed me as I sprinted back toward aisle eight.
"Skylar, slow your ass down!" Calvin whined, but when I did, he zoomed past me, laughing.
"Oh, it's on," I said, pushing to keep up. "I could totally beat you in a race."
It was Calvin's turn to roll his eyes when we both had to slow for oncoming traffic. "Oh, yeah? How much you wanna bet?"
"I'll have to think about it," I answered, and that's when the screaming started.
Calvin grabbed for my arm. "What the ..."
I turned to see a little old lady frozen in fear at the end of aisle eight. Then other voices joined the chorus, including a woman reciting the "Our Father" in Spanish.
"Don't," Calvin said, holding my elbow to keep me from walking toward them.
It was then that the screaming was replaced by a loud ccccccrrraaaaaacccck.
All I could smell was fish. Lots of fish. Enough fish so that I hoped and prayed I would never, ever have to eat sushi again for as long as I lived. My nose burned, and I swallowed hard a couple times to keep from heaving.
And then, Little Miss Sunshine rounded the corner.
"Oh, sheee-it!" Calvin exclaimed.
And I had to agree.
At first, I thought her body was facing me, but after a moment I realized that, somehow, her head had pivoted almost completely around. Her chin rested awkwardly on her shoulder blade, and she was walking backward just to see where she was going. It was like that old Exorcist movie my mom watched every year at Halloween, but this lady was real, and she was heading in our direction.
She was also smiling.
"Okay, eff the s'mores, Sky. I'm out," Calvin said, his voice carefully even. But I wasn't moving, and neither was he.
Little Miss Sunshine, on the other hand ... she was getting closer.
I didn't know where her sunglasses had gone, but I could see her eyes now. They were wild. And she had a terrible smile, like the Cheshire cat had up and lost it.
"Sky?" Calvin said, and I knew for a second what it must feel like to be him — absolutely paralyzed. I couldn't move my legs. I was stuck in that spot.
And she was smiling at me.
People began to peek out from aisle eight to see what was happening. I spotted the old lady and the woman who had been reciting prayers. Mullet woman at the register was quiet too. In fact, the entire store had become terribly silent. The only sound was the canned music clinking through cheap overhead speakers. It was some terrible electronic version of an old Frank Sinatra song, complete with computerized steel drums. I swallowed hard, the smell of fish absolutely overwhelming me.
"Look what I can do!" the woman said, and snapped her neck back around.
"Ohhh!" the Sav'A'Buck crowd gasped. Little Miss Sunshine giggled. Her perfectly manicured hands held her head in place. She spun around to face me.
I've got ... youuuuuu ... under my skin ...
The lyrics echoed eerily through the grocery store, and I looked down at Calvin for a second. He had turned a pale shade of green, which clashed with his chocolate-brown skin.
"Look what I can do!" the woman repeated, her voice horribly clear, her tone singsong, as if she were reciting a nursery rhyme. She clapped her palm onto the side of her face, and I watched her jaw completely dislocate.
"Mommy?" one of the little kids in the register line squealed, while the Hispanic lady said something fast in Spanish and fainted.
"Look what I can do look what I can do look what I can do!" Little Miss Sunshine repeated, and this time it sounded more like "Ooook Uuut Aaah Aan Ooo" because she couldn't close her mouth. Her eyes were wide, with a disturbing amount of white showing on the top and bottom. I watched her grab the top of her mouth and pull.
I've got youuuuuu ... deep in the heart of meeee. ...
Four of her teeth fell out and landed on the linoleum floor, close enough to my feet so that I could see the blood.
"Oh God oh God oh God," Calvin uttered, and his hand on my arm was clammy.
"On the ground!" The security guard who'd been dozing out front rushed through the sliding doors of the store. He'd drawn a Taser from his belt, and he sprinted toward the insane woman, pointing the weapon at her and blocking both Calvin and me in the process.
"Do it! Now!" he said. He was a stocky guy with a big salt-and-pepper mustache and squeaky black boots. I was close enough to smell him — cheap cologne, stale cigar smoke, and more of that terrible fish smell.
Instead of getting on the ground, the woman chuckled. A rivulet of red-tinged drool fell from her distended mouth and landed on the linoleum. The cop took a split second to look where it landed. And in that moment, Little Miss Sunshine high-kicked the officer in the bottom of his chin with her stiletto-heeled shoe. He fell backward, and from the way he hit the floor, I knew he wasn't getting back up.
The Taser bounced and skittered, and I swear that I don't know how it happened exactly, but somehow the weapon found its way over to my feet. And then it found its way into my hands.
"Really? I mean, really?" Calvin exclaimed, as I held the weapon with two extremely shaky hands. I felt like I'd chugged ten cups of espresso, I was jittering so bad.
But I lifted the weapon to point it at Little Miss Sunshine's chest — the biggest possible target.
Somehow I knew, despite her bloodied, disfigured mouth and saucer eyes, that she was still smiling at me. Mocking me.
And then she knocked her jaw back into place with a horrible crunch.
"I think you should have listened to the officer," I said. "Get on the ground."
I acknowledged the cop with only a slight nod, not daring to look away from the woman even for a moment. I could see from my peripheral vision that he was completely still, in a heap between Calvin's wheelchair and the crazy lady. I inanely wondered how long people typically remained unconscious after being kicked in the chin with a designer shoe.
"Just pull the trigger, dammit," Calvin urged from between clenched teeth.
Fingers shaking, I aimed the thing and squeezed.
Little Miss Sunshine looked down at her chest, at the hissing and sparking Taser that should have sent her to the floor. Then she plucked it from the front of her shirt, looked up at me, and smiled.
"Look what I can do look what I can do," the woman continued, and yanked a massive-looking gun out of her bag.
Everyone in the store hit the deck at the sight of the gun — everyone except Calvin and me.
She pointed the barrel at my face.
A nasty wave of déjà vu washed over me. It was mixed with a hefty dose of panic and combined with at least a small degree of consolation that Calvin, as always, had my back.
"Oh, hell no!" he barked. All the fear had vanished from his tone, and now he just sounded pissed. "You wanna mess with someone? You wanna put your gun in her face? You're gonna have to shoot me first!"
And then, things got really weird.
"Hey!" someone called from behind Little Miss Sunshine. It was a girl, older than me but probably only by a year or two. She'd appeared as if out of nowhere, but she must've come in through the front doors while my attention was on that gun. Dressed in full motorcycle garb — a red leather jacket and black steel-toed boots — she hollered again. "Hey, you!"
Little Miss Sunshine whirled around.
Motorcycle Girl charged forward and flicked the pistol out of crazy lady's hands as easily as if she were removing a piece of lint from a buddy's jacket.
The gun spun a couple times before landing on the floor. Motorcycle Girl kicked it back into the air with her foot and caught it with one hand. She tucked it deftly into the back waistband of her pants and then slammed the crazy woman down onto the ground using the palm of one hand. I could have sworn Little Miss Sunshine took a nosedive before Motorcycle Chick even touched her, but then again, I'd been seeing all kinds of crazy things this week.
"Whoa," Calvin said, while the crowd gasped again.
Little Miss Sunshine landed, hard, and made a gurgling sound. She looked up once at me and pointed, still smiling that awful smile, before her face dropped onto the ground.
The room once again was silent. Mostly.
Sooo deep in my heart, that you're really a paaart of meee ...
Motorcycle Chick turned, running a hand gruffly through her platinum-blond pixie cut as she looked at me and frowned, her eyes the color of icicles.
Calvin could have caught flies, his mouth was open so wide.
"God damn, this music blows," the girl said as she glared from me to Cal and back again, as if the soundtrack was from our personal playlist.
Around us, the crowd began to move almost as one, with everyone — shoppers and clerks alike — rushing for the door.
I was about to turn too — getting out of there seemed like a brilliant idea — when Motorcycle Girl spoke again. Her words stopped me. "Way to protect Tiny Tim here, Sky. What were you waiting for? A sign from God?"
I looked at Cal — Cal looked at me. And I knew we were both thinking the same thing.
How the hell does this girl know my name?CHAPTER 2
I'm getting ahead of myself here.
The crappola had really started hitting the fan almost a week before the infamous Sav'A'Buck incident. Of course, I didn't know at the time that a string of unbelievable events were about to take place that would forever change my life. But then again, who can ever tell something like that?
My week had started out completely normal. It was the usual. School, Calvin, babysitting, dealing with Momzilla — a totally typical few days. If anything, it was an uber-awesome week because I got to babysit Sasha an extra night. Extra babysitting equaled extra money. And, anyway, I loved watching Sasha. She lived right down the street from me, and her whole family was exactly what I wished I had. Even though Sasha's mom and dad were struggling with money and both needed to work two jobs because of the whole Second Great Depression that everyone kept talking about, they still seemed so happy all the time. And relaxed.
Nothing like my uptight mom and her crazy rules. Momzilla always told me that we should consider ourselves "lucky" because we hadn't been affected by the world economic crisis or whatever. But seriously? No matter how much money we had, I still had paranoid Mom on my case constantly. And that didn't make me feel lucky at all.
Anyway, that Sunday night was the last "normal" evening I would have in a really long time. Sasha sat at her dining-room table as I stood behind the kitchen counter and mixed chocolate syrup into her milk.
"A lot, please," Sasha said, crossing her fingers together as she swung her pajama-pant-clad legs underneath the table.
"Not too too much," I replied, pouring more syrup into the glass.
"But too too much is good!" she exclaimed. Her brown eyes were big and almond shaped and quite serious. "Daddy and Mommy let me have as much as I want!"
"Well. You've got it made, then," I said. "My mommy won't let me have milk or chocolate."
Or beef. Or any soda pop with artificial sweeteners. Actually, the list of things my mom wouldn't let me eat was longer than the list of things that I could. Ever since the accident and then our move to Coconut Key, the rules I had to follow would have given a kindergartner a rash. Compared to me, Sasha was pretty much living it up.
I had to do my homework before I watched TV.
I was not allowed to get into a car being driven by anyone who hadn't had their driver's license for a full decade.
I had to be home by ten thirty on the weekend and in bed, lights out, by eleven on a school night.
And blah, blah, blah ...
Because life was so dang dangerous now, unlike the incredibly safe and bucolic good old days of the twenty-teens, or whatever ancient but perfect decade Mom had grown up in.
"Skyylarr!" Sasha brought me back to the present.
"Sorry," I said.
Excerpted from Night Sky by Suzanne Brockmann, Melanie Brockmann. Copyright © 2014 Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann. Excerpted by permission of Sourcebooks, Inc..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
One Of My Favorite Series! First of all, it needs to be said that I am a HUGE fan of Suzanne Brockmann. Huge. To be honest, I didn't even realize that she was one of the authors of this book until after I had already started reading it. The premise was so catching that I didn't even take a moment to look the book up before I practically begged NetGalley to let me have a shot at it. Anyhow ... there's that. I had a bit of a rating issue with this one as well. It see-sawed between 4 and 5 the entire time I was reading. It was a pretty difficult decision ... one I'm still struggling with, actually. Getting back to the book ... it was a little slow going for me. And not because the novel was actually slow ... it was just a little confusing in the first few pages. Now, this could be totally my fault. I could have been trying to devour this too quickly and I skipped over some important bits. While this doesn't happen very often, it does happen and so this could be totally my fault. But once I was 2 or 3 chapters in, it was good. Too good. This was the point where I stopped what I was doing and checked to see who the author was. Man, was I surprised. And not surprised at the same time. The writing is stellar and the action scenes are so thought out that it feels like you are there. I was pretty attached to Sky from the very beginning. Sky and Cal are so endearing that you can't help but love them and be totally sympathetic to their individual and combined plights. Remember, these kids are in high school. The Brockmann ladies took me back to those days (which was FAR too long ago) and I felt like the story I was reading was one that could have happened in my high school. Their writing style is so realistic that you can almost hear lockers being slammed shut and sneakers squeaking across the linoleum as kids race to beat the bell. I derailed a bit, I meant to talk about how realistic the characters were and then I went ahead with everything else. Back on track ... the characters ... you'll love Sky, Cal, Milo and Dana. You'll eat up every interaction between the 4 of them and you'll be waiting with bated breath for the next one. It took me a couple of days to read this one but it was because I had to force myself to put it down. I didn't want to just blow through it and then wish I could get that magic back. You know the magic ... the stuff you get when you read an amazing novel for the first time. You only get that once so I had to make a conscious decision to not squander this first time. Night Sky was just a great novel that has everything in it, a little fantasy, a little romance, a few parental unit issues, and some amazing moments where people stand up for themselves, their friends and what they believe in. There is only one thing that really stinks about this book. It's the fact that Night Sky isn't even out yet and I'm going to have to wait for Lord only knows how long for the next installment and let me tell you, it will be an excruciating wait.
Read from August 19 to 20, 2014 Book Info Kindle Edition, 496 pages Expected publication: October 7th 2014 by Sourcebooks Fire (first published October 2014) original title Night Sky ASIN B00MBPT3SM edition language English series Night Sky #1 setting Florida (United States) Source:Netgalley EARC Book Buy Links Amazon B&N BOOK SYNOPSIS In Night Sky, sixteen-year-old Skylar Reid is thrown into a strange world when she discovers that she has unique telekinetic and telepathic powers. After Sasha, the child she babysits, is kidnapped and believed to be murdered, Sky and her best friend Calvin are approached by Dana, a mysterious girl who has super-abilities similar to Sky’s. With the help of Dana and her sidekick Milo, the four teens — two from the rich part of town, and two living hand-to-mouth on the streets — embark on a quest to discover who killed Sasha, and to bring the killers to justice. With Dana as Skylar’s surly and life-toughened mentor, Sky attempts to harness her powers to aid them in their quest. Complicating an already complex relationship with the older girl, Sky starts to fall for the dangerously handsome and enigmatic Milo–and begins to suspect that the attraction is mutual. But then Sky realizes that Sasha might still be alive, and the unlikely foursome’s mission becomes one of search and rescue, pitting the heroic teens against a very deadly enemy. Night Sky is the first book in a YA trilogy set in the same dark future as Suzanne Brockmann’s Born to Darkness, a New York Times bestselling hardcover, published last year as the first installment in her Fighting Destiny series. Night Sky has the same mix of suspense, romance, humor, and the paranormal, and deals with many of the same themes, including society’s relentless exploitation and devaluation of females, and the empowerment that comes when women and girls recognize their strength and intellect, and stand up, fight back, and save the day. My Thoughts Word of advice first, prior to book 1 Night Sky there is a prequel Dangerous Destiny that introduces reader to Sky, her friends, the strange abilities that Sky is exhibiting and explains a bit of what is going on and it will make everything so much easier going forward. Get ready to cheer as Skylar returns with a full on mission to find the kidnapped neighbor child she has grown to care for, also get ready for quite a few tense moments when she and her friends find themselves in danger during the investigation process that takes them to places that the four intrepid teens hope will help lead them to the missing child. In the short prequel Dangerous Destiny I really got hooked on the non-stop banter between Calvin and Sky, now in reading book 1 Night Sky that has carried over to finding myself totally enjoying Dana and Milo’s characters as well as the four teens develop a deeper relationship over the course of the story. Dana is like Skylar only it seems that she has less abilities at her disposal than Sky although the main two that she can harness at will, her mind control and telekinesis, prove to be more than enough when it comes time to confront anyone. This is at times slow moving at other times the pace is fast but never do you lose sight of the fact that the teens number one priority is nine-year-old Sasha ! [EArc from Netgalley in exchange for honest review]
I loved this book!! When I stated reading this book I was hooked so bad that i didnt even wan to eat an put down my nook... i couldnt believe what was happening in the beginning. And it started off with a kick and keeps up th action. I recommend this to anyone and everyone.
First of all, let me say that I'm far from being a YA, and I don't read that many books that fall in this category. But I am a Suzanne Brockmann fan, and the team of Suzanne and her daughter Melanie is terrific. This is a great story, inventive, fresh, and intriguing with good world building and well-drawn characters. I had read Suzanne's novel in the Destiny world, Born to Darkness, but didn't even realize until after the fact that this was the same "world," so it definitely stands on its own as far as the world building aspect. I'm still waiting and hoping for an adult-style sequel to "Born to Darkness."
I'm glad there is a return to the Destiny world. This is a good YA entry. You go girls!!!
I recommend that you read the prequel Dangerous Destiny (Night Sky 0.5) to introduce you to the world and leading characters because this book jumps in full steam ahead. This is a YA paranormal tale with romantic elements. If you liked Kathy & Brendan Reichs Virals or James Pattersons Maximum Ride series you should enjoy this. This is an exciting story with well written characters discovering themselves in unreal situations.
For those of you who’ve been following Karen Vail, you are in for a treat. And for those of you who haven’t, trust me, you’ll want to start. Going back in time, to 1995 to be precise, Karen just graduated from the police academy and is now a brand new NYPD rookie. On her first day as a patrol officer she gets called to a crime scene and has her first encounter with a serial killer. Twenty years later, now a skilled FBI profiler, Karen Vail gets back to NYC and still pursues that same guy that’s been evading the law for way too long. Mr. Jacobson magically merges the past and the present in this police procedural, threading the subplots with so much finesse that every tidbit of information is revealed exactly on time, making this book a must for mystery and procedural lovers. With outstanding clarity the author creates characters that are easy to empathize with—if not impossible not to. The beginnings of Karen Vail are an amazing asset to the character and the way she is explained and developed is stunning; her background and motivations, her developing into the agent she is in the present and the woman she is personally are all part of the relevance here. So sit tight and prepare to be attached to your favorite reading chair for this fast paced and engaging from start to finish thriller won’t let you stop until you catch the sought after serial killer.