Excerpt & Giveaway! Relentless by Cassia Leo

Today we are so excited to be sharing an exclusive excerpt from author Cassia Leo’s, Relentless—a novel about secrets: keeping them, sharing them, and moving past them.

We are also giving away one AUTOGRAPHED paperback to a random (and lucky) reader!

For Paula’s thoughts on all things Relentless, check out her review!

The tires squeal, skidding across the asphalt as the truck plunges toward me. I’m frozen as I wait for the impact. I close my eyes and the first and only thought that crosses my mind is that this was inevitable. I’m finally being punished for my sins.

The squealing stops and my nose fills with the stench of burnt rubber. I open my eyes as I feel the heat of the engine against my arm. The grille of the truck is inches away from me and a cloud of smoke surrounds the front of the truck. I hear a car door opening, but I can’t see anyone approaching through the smoke until he’s right in front of me, Jack Dawson.

“Are you all right?” he asks. I’m shaking with adrenaline, but I don’t have a scratch on me. I nod and he grabs my arms. “You look like you’re in shock. I should take you to the hospital.”

“No!” I shout as I shrug my arms out of his grasp. “I’m fine. I just want to go home.”

“I’ll take you.”

“You almost killed me!”

He lets out a sheepish chuckle and it infuriates me. “Which is why you should let me take you home, so you don’t step in front of any more moving vehicles.”

“You think it’s funny that you almost murdered me?”

“It would have been manslaughter. And, hey, I saved you from that ‘roid junkie this morning. I guess this balances that out. Now everything is right with the universe.” I curl my lip in disgust and he smiles as he nods toward the cabin of the truck. “Come on. I’ve already tried to manslaughter you once tonight. I promise I won’t try again for at least another twelve hours. You’re safe for now.”

I roll my eyes as I walk toward the passenger door. He skips after me and opens the door for me to climb in. I step into the truck, using the handgrip to pull myself up, and bounce down into the seat. It smells like the coconut-scented sunblock I’ve had to purchase by the case since moving to Wrightsville Beach. He shuts the door and I flinch, still jumpy from nearly being mowed down by this monster.

He slides into the driver’s seat, but his hands make no move for the ignition. “Why were you running across the street in the middle of the night without looking both ways?”

“I was just walking home from a party. Can we go now?”

“A party? Are you drunk?”

“I don’t drink.”

He cocks an eyebrow as he studies me, as if his gaze is the equivalent of a Breathalyzer test.

“Hey, I’m not going to sue you, if that’s what you’re worried about.”

“I’m not worried.”

Ugh. This guy is annoyingly cocky.

“Let me take you to lunch today to make up for almost killing you.”

I turn to look through the rear window of the truck. Where are all the cars? Not that this street is exactly buzzing past midnight, but I’m beginning to think I’m never going to get home if someone doesn’t come along and force him out of this intersection.

“I’m sleeping in today.”

He tilts his head inquisitively. “What do you mean by sleeping in?”

“I mean curtains drawn, eye mask on, electronic devices switched off. Dead to the world sleeping in,” I say as I pull the house keys out of my purse and set the purse on the floor next to my feet.

“Sounds serious.”

“Sleep is serious.”

“What are you some kind of health nut?”

“I like getting my rest after a night of partying.”

“You just said you weren’t drinking.”

“Are you going to keep asking me questions or are you going to take me home? ‘Cause I can walk.”

He smiles as he turns the key in the ignition and pulls the truck forward. “Cora was right about you,” he says, then reaches across the console and shakes my knee.

I slap his hand away, accidentally jabbing him with the keys in my hand. “Hey, there’s this thing called personal space. And how do you know Cora?”

“I don’t believe in personal space. Separateness is an illusion. We are all connected.” He turns to me and flashes me a cunning smile as he pulls into my apartment complex. “Welcome home.”

There is only one way he would know where I live and also know Cora.

“You’re the new tenant?”

He continues to grin as he guides his truck into the parking space next to Senia’s empty space and kills the engine. A million sarcastic remarks about living underneath the person who nearly murdered me whiz through my brain, but I keep them to myself. If there’s one thing I hate it’s getting on bad terms with a neighbor. I never had neighbors growing up in the middle of nowhere with my mom. When I stayed with Senia for a few months after dropping out, I couldn’t believe how friendly her family was with their neighbors. They have parties almost every weekend together. Cora has practically become a surrogate grandmother to me. The least I can do is show her new tenant some courtesy.

“Well, then, welcome home to you, too,” I say, determined not to let our neighborly relationship get any more awkward.

He glances down at the steering wheel, unimpressed with my attempt at easing the tension. “Don’t you want to know what Cora said about you?”

I open the car door and slide out of the truck, letting out a small grunt as I land on the pavement. “Nope. I think I’ll let Cora tell me herself. Goodnight….”

“Adam,” he says. “I’ll tell you my last name at lunch.”

Relentless by Cassia Leo

Claire Nixon is a twenty-year-old college dropout with a secret.

To Claire, Adam Parker is just another flirty customer at the cafe, until a chance encounter and seemingly innocent comment spurs a bet between them. The bet is simple: If Adam can get Claire to reveal the secret that made her drop out of college, she has to re-enroll. If he doesn’t succeed, she gets to keep her secret and he has to stop stalking her at the cafe.

Claire thinks she has this one in the bag. She’s perfected the art of forgetting her past. But she isn’t prepared for Adam’s relentless pursuit or for him to share his own secrets. And she’s definitely not prepared for her rock star ex, and her secret, to come banging down her door one year later.

New Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language, drug use, and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

About the Author

cassialeo author photoCassia Leo loves her coffee, chocolate, and margaritas with salt. When she’s not writing, she spends way too much time watching old reruns of Friends and Sex and the City. When she’s not watching reruns, she’s usually enjoying the California sunshine or reading—sometimes both. Her favorite color is lavender and her dream is to one day score a record deal based on her awesome shower singing skills.

Find Cassia Online:
Website | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Giveaway!

One randomly drawn reader will win an AUTOGRAPHED paperback copy of Cassia Leo’s Relentless! US Only. Please follow the Rafflecopter widget directions and terms and conditions. Giveaway ends at 12:01am on 3/18/13.

Please leave us a comment telling us, if you were Claire, do you think you would accept Adam's bet?

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24 comments:

  1. Oh, of course I would! I can't say no to a cute boy :)

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  2. Sure I would :D Interesting way to challenge someone ;)

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  3. I loved this book!!!!I want more Adam.

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  4. I would've accepted it. I love this book too, I'm ready for the next one ;)

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  5. Oh yeah i would...gotta love a challenge
    andieleah78@gmail.com

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  6. Oh yeah.........

    mmalavec(at)med(dot)umich(dot)edu

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  7. I have not gotten to read this book yet... but by other responses.. sure I would :D LOL

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  8. Yes! Love Relentless and Team Adam FTW!! Thanks for a chance to win! :)

    tess_halim(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  9. Yes, I would accept Adam's bet.

    JessieL62(at)comcast(dot)net

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  10. I'm never one to back down, so sure

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  11. I haven't read it yet, but I'd love to read it.

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