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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Release Day-Precious and Fragile Things by Megan Hart

Gilly Soloman has been reduced to a mothering machine, taking care of everyone and everything
except herself. But the machine has broken down. Burnt out by the endless days of crying children and menial tasks, and exhausted from always putting herself last, Gilly doesn’t immediately consider the consequences when she’s carjacked. With a knife to her throat, her first thought is that she’ll finally get some rest. Someone can save her for a change.

But salvation isn’t so forthcoming. Stranded in a remote, snowbound cabin with this stranger, hours turn to days, days into weeks. As time forges a fragile bond between them, she learns her captor is not the lunatic she first believed, but a human being whose wasted life has been shaped by secrets and tragedy. Yet even as their connection begins to foster trust, Gilly knows she must never forget he’s still a man teetering on the edge. One who just might take her with him.

A couple weeks ago I read and 'reviewed' Precious and Fragile Things by Megan Hart which you can find here. This is Megan's first non-romance, non-erotic novel and I really enjoyed it.

Precious and Fragile Things is being released today in most book stores and I have the privilege today of presenting you with an excerpt of this novel to give you a little taste of what you are going to get yourselves into when you read this book. So enjoy everyone and Happy reading.

He shook his head. “No, I’m not going to let you go, for fuck’s sake, Gilly, that’s getting pretty old. But you want to run out in the snow again? Be a dumbass? Be my guest. See what happens this time, see if I save your sorry ass one more time.”

“What about when the snow melts, Todd? What then?”

His gaze wavered for a second before he shoved her away from him and stalked to the center of the room, head hung low. When he swung around to look at her, his dark eyes were large in his face, his mouth a pensive frown.

“Why can’t you just like me?” he asked her. “I ain’t done anything real bad to you, Gilly. Not real bad.”

“I won’t ever like you. Don’t you see I can’t?”

“Why not?” Todd held out his hands, giving her that kicked-dog look. “Why?”

“Because you’re my enemy.” Gilly pulled the torn pieces of her gown back together with one hand, the fabric a useless shield but one she couldn’t put down. Her mouth stung when she spoke, but the blood had ceased dripping. “Because you are keeping me from the things I love.”

He sighed like the weight of the world had come to rest on his broad shoulders. “We could get along better than we do.”

“No!” She recoiled, grimacing.

“I didn’t mean like that,” he said quietly.

“I know you didn’t. The answer’s still no.”

He looked angry again. “We’re stuck here, Gilly. Ain’t no way around it. We’re fucking stuck out here in the middle of noplace up to our assholes in snow. That’s the way it is. Don’t keep pushing me into being something you wish I was just so you can feel better about what you did.”

It wasn’t the statement of a stupid man but of an insightful one, and Gilly wondered at what the people in his life had done to him, and for how long, to convince him he was so dumb.

“I don’t want to hurt you,” Todd said. “I don’t want to.”

But he would. The words unsaid nevertheless hung between them, loud and clear.

She turned her face away. “When the snow melts, I’m going to try to get away. Are you going to tie me up?”

“I’m not that kinky,” Todd said, “though a girl did ask me once to put on her panties.”

This was serious and she hated he was making a joke of it. “The only thing keeping me here is the snow. You know that.”

“Ah, fuck me. Yes. I know it.” Todd scowled.

“So, what happens when the snow melts?” She asked the question more quietly this time, not pushing so hard. Truly curious. She wanted to know the answer.

“I knew an old hound dog once,” Todd said after a pause. “He wasn’t mine – I never had a dog. He belonged to this guy who lived down the street from one of the places they put me after…one of the places I lived as a kid.”

Despite herself, Gilly lifted her face to meet his unwavering gaze. Todd’s voice was solid, deep, precise even in its uneducated manner. He stood with his feet planted slightly apart, hands at his sides. Telling her.

“This dog was one mean son-of-a-bitch. The guy kept him outside on a chain, and that dog would run so fast to bite your ass he’d choke himself right off his own feet. Every day, I’d walk by that dog on my way to school, every fucking day he’d try to get me. But he never did.”

Todd laughed, low. “The guy that owned him could’ve just kicked that dog when he saw him, but he never did. That guy always made sure that dog had plenty of food and water, and he gave him chew toys and rawhide bones. And every night, when that guy came out to feed the dog, he’d pat him on the head and scratch him behind the ears. And the dog, that ass-biting dog, always growled. The guy loved that dog, even though the dog never loved him back, and never thanked him for all the nice things he did for it. Then one night, when the guy went out to feed the dog and pat him on the head, the little fucker didn’t bother growling. This time, he took a big chunk right out of the guy’s hand.”

Her throat had gone dry during the telling of his tale. “What happened then?”

Todd smiled, an empty expression that bared his teeth and did not reach his eyes. “The guy went inside his house and got his shotgun, and he blew that little fucker’s head right off.”

There was no mistaking the meaning of his story, but Gilly wasn’t afraid of it. “Which one of us is the dog?”

“I don’t know, Gilly,” Todd said. “I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.”

This excerpt is copyright to Megan Hart.

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