Friday, July 11, 2014

YA Bound Blog Tour, Promo Post, & Giveaway: Going Down In Flames (Chris Cannon)

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Displaying GDIF_500x750.jpgGoing Down in Flames
by Chris Cannon
Release Date: 06/30/14
Entangled Teen

If her love life is going down in flames, she might as well spark a revolution.
Finding out on your sixteenth birthday you’re a shape-shifting dragon is tough to swallow. Being hauled off to an elite boarding school is enough to choke on.
Since Bryn is the only crossbreed at the Institute for Excellence, all eyes are on her, but it’s a particular black dragon, Zavien, who catches her attention.
Zavien is tired of the Council’s rules. Segregated clans, being told who to love, and close-minded leaders make freedom of choice almost impossible. The new girl with the striped hair is a breath of fresh air, and with Bryn’s help, they may be able to change the rules.
At the Institute, old grudges, new crushes, and death threats are all part of a normal day for Bryn. She’ll need to learn to control her dragon powers if she wants to make it through her first year at school. But even focusing on staying alive is difficult when you’re falling for someone you can't have.

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I love reading and writing snarky, kick-butt characters who take on the world and win.
My truths: You can never have too many books, shoes, or purses.
Coffee is the Elixir of Life.

There should be a National Nerf Bat Day where you are allowed to whack annoying people upside the head.

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The sun shone bright as Bryn, Clint, and Ivy walked across campus to the history building. The smell of fresh-cut grass drifted on the breeze.

“It’d be a perfect day to cut classes,” Clint said in a wistful tone.

Ivy whacked him on the shoulder. “It’s the first day.”

“Could we fly to the history building?” Bryn had the odd desire to feel the sun on her wings.

“We could,” Clint said, “but then I wouldn’t want to shift back to human form for class.”

They trudged to their destination. When they reached the appropriate room, the History texts were laid out ondesks. Unlike Mr. Stanton’s class, there wasn’t a seating chart, so they sat toward the back.

The teacher stood and cleared her throat. “Good morning, children. My name is Mrs. Hanfelder.”

Was the woman used to teaching younger students? She spoke in a singsong voice. Something about her appearance was off. Her wispy, brown hair sat in a messy bun on top of her head, and her glasses perched a bit crooked on her nose. There was an odd gleam in her eyes.

Mrs. Hanfelder tapped a wooden pointer on her desktop podium.

“You should all know the basics of our history, so I won’t waste time reviewing. If your former schools weren’t up to standard, that would be your parents’ fault.” Mrs. Hanfelder stared right at Bryn.

Great. She was the class example for how not to raise a dragon. Whispers and laughter broke out across the room. Mrs. Hanfelder gave a satisfied smile and opened her book.

“Children, on page fifty, you’ll find a list of Directorate members. Choose one and write a five paragraph essay on their contributions to the laws we have today.”

Mr. Stanton was definitely her favorite teacher so far.

“To some of you, history is a class where you memorize actions of the dead. History is alive. It’s relevant. Based on what’s come before, we make laws to protect ourselves today.” She smacked the pointer on the podium for emphasis.

“As you know, there have been reports of criminal deeds against Directorate members and their families. Last week, one of our students was incarcerated for setting fire to the summer home of a prominent family. The family wasn’t in residence at the time. However, the groundskeeper and his family who lived on the property were killed.” 

Students gasped. This mustn’t be common knowledge. Ferrin hadn’t mentioned the deaths in his speech. It didn’t seem right for Mrs. Hanfelder to discuss this in class. It certainly wasn’t right for her to smile while she delivered the morbid news. 

“There are reasons for laws in our culture. Dragons have a strong desire for power and wealth. In the dark ages, dragons fought to keep property. In effect, they created their own kingdoms. Many died in the effort to protect their land.

“The age of Enlightenment came and brought new ideas. Land was parceled out among the Clans, and token marriages were arranged between Clans in an effort to keep peace. Dragons were less likely to start a battle with their neighbor if one of their own lived there. Unfortunately, these couples were barren.” Mrs. Hanfelder tilted her head to the side and gazed straight at Bryn. “As we all know, crossbreeding cannot produce a functional dragon.”

Bryn’s mouth fell open. Her classmates snickered. 

“Was there something you wanted to add, Bryn?” Mrs. Hanfelder asked in a sickening, sweet tone.

Asking “Are you bat-shit crazy?” probably wouldn’t help her grade point average, so Bryn gritted her teeth and shook her head no.

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