Title: Amulet of Elusion (The Lost Amulet Chronicles #1)
Author: Katie Lynn Johnson
Audience: Young Adult
Release Date: June 12, 2013
Alexa Costa has a life-altering secret…only she doesn’t know it yet.
Confined by law to the kingdom of Alvair until the age of eighteen, Alexa Costa has lived a sheltered existence under the watchful eye of her sword-wielding guardian, Ivy. Her love interest, Caleb Whitman, is exactly the opposite. A merchant sailor and seeker of rare artifacts, Caleb has lived a life of adventure in nearby San Lucero, the long-time rival of Alvair.
After her eighteenth birthday, Alexa’s quiet existence becomes tumultuous, and she realizes she does not need to seek to find adventure. Myths become real, legend becomes fact, and Alexa discovers that she possesses rare abilities which make her a target for both sides in a centuries-old struggle for power. She must use every resource available to her—including her talents with the supernatural Amulets— to help her friends, rekindle her romance with Caleb, and save her island home from destruction.
Quietly she closed the door and placed her hand on the side of his face, silently imploring him to look at her. When Caleb continued to look at the floor, Alexa leaned into him and pressed her lips to his. She wanted him to know that she didn’t blame him for anything, and that she was grateful for his decision to brave Hadley’s fire chamber to rescue her.
Caleb returned the kiss with seeming reluctance at first, then began to kiss her with a persistence that made her feel weak. His lips locked with hers, he pressed her against the wall and Alexa rapt her knuckles on the wardrobe beside her, furious that he was so perfect when she was not supposed to love him. He had already risked his life several times that day. How many more times was his life going to be in danger because of her?
Alexa forced herself to break away from him and, sensing her unease, he released her. She stared at the floor, aware that they were both breathing heavily, and cursed the blood in her veins for making everything so complicated.
“I understand if you’re angry with me,” Caleb murmured.
“It isn’t that,” she said truthfully.
He looked at her, doubtful. “What is it then?”
She drew a deep breath in an attempt to slow the rapid beating of her heart and confessed, “When I came into the city this morning to find you, it was because I needed to tell you that we shouldn’t see each other anymore.”
She thought she was going to have to explain the reasoning behind her decision, but Caleb sighed and said, “Because King Alvarez is looking for you.” It wasn’t a question.
Alexa looked at him steadily and replied, “Yes. You’ll never be safe as long as you’re with me.”
“I don’t care,” he insisted. “I love you, Alexa.”
“Stop saying that,” she told him in frustration. “You aren’t allowed to love me.”
Caleb looked at her searchingly and tentatively placed his hands on her waist. She found herself wishing selfishly that she could drop the argument right then.
Softly, he inquired, “And if I was allowed to love you…then what?”
“Then,” Alexa told him reluctantly, “I suppose I would be a little enamored with you.”
He smiled as he brushed his lips against hers, his tone skeptical as he asked, “Is that all?”
“Yes,” Alexa said, though she heard the doubt in her own voice. She had to force herself not to be distracted by Caleb’s attractiveness and repeated resolutely, “Yes. Because I’m not allowed to love you either.”
“So let me get this straight,” he began in obvious amusement. “You don’t love me and I don’t love you, but only because it would be incredibly stupid of us to love one another given the circumstances.” Alexa reluctantly met his gaze and had to fight back a laugh at his expression. “But in a perfect world, I would be in love with you,”—his lips met hers briefly—“you would be enamored with me, and we wouldn’t have to worry about what would happen if we allowed ourselves to accept what is.”
“But this isn’t a perfect world,” she pointed out gently. “In this world, being with me is incredibly dangerous.”
When Caleb spoke again, his tone was serious as he looked steadily at her. “Look. If you don’t want to be with me, fine. But you shouldn’t lie to yourself just because you think I’ll be in less danger without you.”
She whispered beseechingly, “I don’t want anything to happen to you.” Her eyes burned as she said it. The thought of him dying because of her was agonizing, unbearable.
“And I don’t want anything to happen to you,” he argued. “I’m not going to leave you alone in this. I will always be there for you, Alexa. Whether you want me to be or not.”
She had no immediate reply. Looking into his dark eyes, she wondered if she would have the resolve to continue her argument at a later time. She didn’t want to, but as long as Caleb’s life was hanging in the balance, she was going to ask herself if their relationship was worth it.
“Get some rest,” he told her quietly as he held his lips against her temple. “I’ll see you in the morning.”
He pressed his lips to hers one last time as he took her hand in his, then released her and left the room. She listened to his footsteps as they retreated down the spiral staircase to the spare room on the main floor of the apartment, then closed her door and cursed herself for allowing him to win the argument.
And Use Promotional Code EF63C to Get the FREE eBook on Smashwords!
Amazon | Barnes & Noble
About the Author
Katie Lynn Johnson is a starving artist, working mom, and somewhat reluctant resident of the sprawling metropolis that is Boise, Idaho (in case you aren’t familiar with Boise, it is actually quite small). She is obsessed with all things creative, and enjoys juggling her job, two kids, and writing novels. When she isn’t glued to her laptop, or working as a graphic designer and copyeditor, she enjoys lounging around with a good book.
Blog | BlogLovin' | Goodreads | Twitter | YouTube
US or Canada Only
Ends at 12:01am EST on December 16th
a Rafflecopter giveaway