Friday, March 22, 2013

BLOG TOUR: Paramount by Nadia Scrieva


Thanks to Bewitching Book Tours for hosting this blog tour. I'm promoting Paramount today by Nadia Scrieva. Happy reading!

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A goddess hell-bent on revenge...

Pax Burnson is the descendant of devas. She has vowed to live her life without practicing her powers, but recent events have overturned her entire existence. Thorn Kalgren has been the love of her life since she was fourteen -- he helped her to heal after the loss of her parents. As a close family friend, he is one of a select few who understand and share her unique heritage. His recent betrayal has released a violence within her that she cannot restrain.

While her first instinct is to escape and forget, her aimless road trip is interrupted by a childhood friend in need. An idea strikes Pax as she sees her own pain reflected in Thorn's sister, Amara Kalgren. She is suddenly filled with a new, all-consuming purpose: vengeance. She believes there is nothing else left.

Using ancient magick and enlisting Amara's help, Pax orchestrates a complex, drawn-out plan to deceive and emotionally destroy her former lover. The friendship and loyalty between the two girls becomes fortified and unshakable as they venture down a dark and twisted path together, encountering formidable roadblocks and demons.

It soon becomes clear to Pax that everything she has been led to believe about her powers and her past was shaped by blatant lies. When she discovers that Thorn's infidelity is closely linked with her mother's death, she is forced to make a life-altering decision...


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~EXCERPT~

“Mara! Where are you? Is everything okay? Amara!”

Pax felt sick. It had taken ten hours, but she had driven directly to Amara’s waterfront home, stopping only once for gas. Seeing her friend’s Jaguar in the driveway, she had let herself in. Now, as she moved from room to room on the hunt for the blonde woman, she was growing alarmed. She considered calling, but it was faster just to lift the palm of her hand.

“Pilot me to thine light,” Pax chanted softly. The incantation was not necessary, but it helped her to focus. Soon enough, she found herself being subliminally led to her friend’s bedroom. Amara was still nowhere to be seen, so she continued to follow the guiding energy to the ensuite bathroom.

Upon touching the doorknob, Pax recoiled as the strong scent of her uncle overwhelmed her senses before the door was even fully open. Terror flooded her breast as she imagined Asher’s corpse sprawled out on the floor. Her gloved hand flew to cover her mouth before she had even seen a body. A déjà vu swept over her as she recalled finding her dead mother when she was just a teenager. The scent was familiar—it was not only Asher, but his blood.

Pax felt her heart skip a beat as it ached with love for her uncle. She expected to see him lying there dead, but she still moved into the room with determination. Asher was nowhere to be seen, but a small blonde woman was huddled in a corner of the shower stall. Amara was completely naked. Pax swallowed back her fear before she took in the surroundings. Amara’s fashionable clothes were strewn all over the floor, and there was dark blood which had dried as it had been dripping down the glass doors of the shower stall.

“Amara, are you hurt?” Pax immediately moved to comfort her friend, crawling into the shower stall and crouching beside her. Pax spotted Amara’s cell phone sitting in a pool of water nearby. It was amazing that the thing hadn’t short-circuited, but then again, it was Kalgren technology.

“Mara?” Pax asked in a soft voice, reaching out to brush her friend’s hair off her face. She was surprised to find that Amara’s hair was perfectly dry. Her skin was perfectly dry. There was hardly any water in the shower stall, except for a few small pools gathered at the bottom. It must have been hours since the shower was used.

“How long have you been like this? Amara! Talk to me!” said Pax firmly. Hearing no response she desperately sent her message directly into her friend’s mind. Has something happened to Ash? Please, please, Mara. Please tell me that my uncle is fine. I hardly have any family left. Is he…

Amara snapped out of her little daze and looked up at her friend. “Ash?” she asked dumbly. “He’s fine.”

“Thank Sakra,” Pax said, referring to the god of gods. She allowed herself to fall from her raised position on her ankles to a seated position on her bottom, ignoring the pools of water beneath her. She released a gush of air. “Is this your blood?”

The blonde woman stared forward for a moment silently.

Pax began to frown as her worry began to be replaced with anger. “Did Ash hurt you? Because if he…”

“No,” Amara responded softly. “When he touches me, he is always gentle. So tender. He wouldn’t hurt a fly.”

Pax rolled her eyes at this description. Were they talking about the same man? Her annoyingly powerful uncle who had wrestled her toys away with his mind before she could even walk? “Maybe he wouldn’t,” Pax agreed, “but he certainly could. Did he?”

“No.”

“Sure. He didn’t hurt you. That’s why you’ve been sitting naked in the corner of a blood-soaked shower stall for god-knows how many hours!”

Amara looked at her friend for the first time. “Oh, Paxie. Where’s all your beautiful hair?”

Pax was already reaching up to search for it before she remembered. She scowled. “Don’t call me that, Amara. We’re not five anymore. And don’t change the subject. What the hell happened?”

Amara’s eyes lowered again. “I did something bad.”

Glancing up at the bloody shower walls in confusion, Pax frowned. “What did you do?” She knew that Amara was not strong enough to harm her uncle, physically or psychically. She reached out to grasp the girl’s shoulder and give it a firm shake. “Mara. Hey, hey! What did you do?”

“I don’t know. He left me.”

“He what?” Pax repeated in shock. Asher and Amara were the most solid couple she knew. Every birthday and holiday, she and Thornton would always… she could not finish the thought. Her anger at her own lover was beginning to seep into thoughts of her uncle by extension.

Amara turned to Pax with wounded innocence in her clear blue eyes. “He said he just wanted to… have me one last time. Then he walked away.”

Pax felt comprehension dawn on her as she took in the state of the bathroom. “So… he fucked you and then he left you?”

The blonde woman was as still as death. “Do I deserve this? I don’t understand.”

Rage flushed Pax’s body with warmth as the anger blossomed inside her again. She clenched her fists. Even after all this, Amara refused to say a negative thing about Asher. She refused to condemn him for hurting her, and she chose to believe that it was somehow her fault. While Pax loved her uncle to pieces, she could not make sense of his actions. Asher often followed the wrong company (Thornton) and this has often influenced him negatively and gotten him into all kinds of trouble.

“You didn’t do anything wrong,” Pax reassured her friend. She reached out to rub her gloved hand over Amara’s naked back. “I’ll stay with you, okay? We’ll get through this together.”

Amara felt the familiar waves of heat radiating from Pax’s hand and lifting her hair. She felt a small smile touch her lips. She hadn’t realized that she had been so cold. The warmth of the dark haired woman’s angry energy surrounded Amara's skin like a comforting blanket. As her lips curled they cracked, revealing how dry they had become from the salty tears that had been running over them for so many hours.

“Thank you, Pax,” said Amara softly.

“What for?” she asked.

“For being here. I needed you.”

Pax felt guilt wash over her when she remembered that she had been ignoring Amara's phone calls. It’s partly my fault she’s like this. If I had been a better friend… Gah! I should have flown here instead of driving when my teleportation didn’t work. As she stared at the small blonde woman who was deathly pale, Pax began to form a vow in her mind. Uncle or not, she would not allow Asher to hurt her friend like this and get away scot-free. She would find a way to make sure that he was the one sitting on the floor and broken. She did not realize that she was fusing her own pain with Amara’s and transferring it to a different man. Asher will regret the day he did this to her. She’s the last person who deserved this. Amara is so sweet and loving—not bitter and vengeful like me. She was always so true and devoted. I’ll make Asher pay. I’ll hurt him so deeply, and so terribly that it will ruin his already ruined life. Damn you, Thorn! I mean Ash...

Pax saw a single tear run down Amara’s face and it snapped her out of her guilt and anger. She put her arms around the blonde woman and held her close, ignoring that she was naked. Amara leaned against Pax’s shoulder and let the tears fall freely.

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About the Author
Nadia Scrieva lives in Toronto, Canada with no husband, no kids, and no pets. She does own a very attractive houseplant which she occasionally remembers to water between her all-consuming writing marathons.

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