The Beholder by Ivan Amberlake – Excerpt + Giveaway

The BeholderThe Beholder by Ivan Amberlake
The Beholder Book 1
Published December 4, 2013

Around the world, people die under mysterious circumstances. Each branded with an arcane sign, they are pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. When more people are missing, with similar signs appearing in and around their homes, Jason, an average New Yorker, realizes the victims are a riddle addressed to him.

He is the final piece.

Emily appears, the most beautiful woman with extraordinary powers and startling amber eyes, and tells Jason that powers dormant within him are about to wake. In the world of Light- and Darksighted, he is the only person who can prevent Darkness from enslaving the world. He is the Beholder whose advent has been awaited for many years.

Setting out on a journey with Emily, Jason discovers many improbable things like Sight, Soulfusion, the Hall of Refuge, but the greatest surprise arrives the moment he realizes he has fallen in love with Emily.

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Excerpt

Prologue

In darkness, Pariah crept along the wall of the ancient corridor, black eyes squinting toward the end of the passage. A silvery glimmer streamed through the archway, and he flattened himself into the shadow, out of the way of the shimmering light. With every heartbeat the light grew more intense, until he was forced to halt and close his eyes to block it out, if only for a little while.

The Ethan girl was there, crouching behind the silvery dome she’d created in the center of the vast hall. It had cost them a lot of effort to track her down, and now part of the plan had been accomplished: he and seven other Shadows had brought her to bay.

Opening his eyes again, Pariah took a step forward and winced at the subsequent burn. I shouldn’t go any closer. He clenched his knuckles and the movement hurt, driving fury through him. He wanted to crush her, destroy her Light … but she was dangerous and unpredictable.

What if she escapes? This may be our only chance to catch her. Pariah inhaled, reaching for patience. He must wait for her to make the fatal mistake, wait for her to leave her refuge. He envisaged his skulking brethren, guarding the other exits like spiders, and he grinned in malicious delight. She won’t get away this time.

Currents of crimson energy flowed through Pariah and his brothers, the force aimed towards a circle of whirling silver light. But the girl remained unaffected, sheltered by its brightness. No, he realized, watching the stream. This was not the way she would be killed. The currents could kill an ordinary person—in fact, hundreds of them in one second—but not a Sighted one. What they needed in order to break such a defense was an inhuman hatred. Pariah knew how to do it, but this wasn’t the time. His objective was to lure the girl into the trap, not kill her. First he would torture her, learn her secrets, then he would kill her.

Against the Light he was a better warrior. His hands were stained with the blood of the many Sighted he had slain. Patience, he told himself. She won’t be able to stay there for—

Searing pain shot up his spine, burning like acid and paralyzing him, sucking out his breath. All he could do was stare as an effulgent creature emerged from the circle, brighter than the explosion of a supernova, and watch that violent star head in his direction. The closer she got, the more she stifled the darkness inside him. Disgust rose as he sensed what was happening. It was as though love had been sewn into his hateful mind; twinges of conscience were waking in him, eradicating his inherent evil.

He tried to slow time, to stop the burning pain, but she knew how to block his attempts and make him suffer even more. The laws of physics meant as little to her as they did to him, and both abused their gifts to attain their aims. She was quicker than any of the Sighted ones who had previously crossed his path. He knew she was just as aware of him as he was of her, but she was stronger. For the first time in his dark existence, Pariah knew fear.

It happened too quickly. With ease, she breached the vicious circle he and the others had formed, and shot past, leaving a comet trail twinkling in her wake. Pariah stared after her, thinking through the decision she’d made. The trail was a block, not an attack. The Ethan girl had decided to protect herself from the shadow’s evil mind rather than use her power to kill him.

How noble—and naïve—to spare your enemy’s life, Pariah mused.

His confidence returned, but his hands still glowed bright from her energy. He dispersed the vapor trail she’d left and warped his mouth to let out a horrific banshee howl. The terrible sound reverberated off the walls, rising in magnitude, and he hoped the amplified echo might hamper her flight. His brethren chimed in to reinforce the cursing howl as they swished past and darted after her, but Pariah remained stationary, suffering the agony of having been imbued with her Light.

He reached his hands in her direction, slowing her nimble movements as much as he could, but the distance between them only increased. Wasting no time—for he had no more to lose—he threw himself forward, steadily gaining speed, watching tunnels rush by on either side. Acting purely on instinct, Pariah cut a rupture in space and flung himself into the blackness. This time he exited much closer to her, and his success spurred him on to try again.

Cut—plunge into blackness—return to reality. That was the process.

The sickening light came closer with every surge. Understanding his intentions, the others reassembled to help the Evil One coax the girl into the trap. Pariah was desperate, aware he would only get one chance. He took a final plunge into the ruptured darkness and the action brought him through at last. He reappeared directly in front of her, and she braked, glowing with that detestable light.

For a brief moment, Pariah managed to discern her face, the amber eyes wide with fear. Then it was gone in an eruption of burning brightness. He sent a wave of dark energy at her, and her shield disintegrated. Pariah’s fury transformed into a victorious pulse; he had broken her defenses, and now she lay convulsing with pain, his deadly energy choking the life out of her.

Path of the Heretic Final cut versionPath of the Beholder
The Beholder Book 2
Published March 5, 2015

After Emily Ethan is gone, Jason is left with too many questions unanswered. Betrayed by the one he loved and yet hurting after losing her, Jason is eager to find out what actually happened to Emily.

When he least expects it, the Darksighted return to New York City, but they are not after Jason. They seek to destroy those who may know something about where Emily can be.

The more Jason gets to know the world of Energy and Sight, the harder it is for him to belong in this world. He can’t enter the Sight when there are too many people around. And then Emily comes to his dreams and gives him clues of where to look for the answers.

The question is: should he believe her, or is it just another attempt to get him killed?

Amazon

About the Author

Author pictireIvan Amberlake is an urban fantasy writer, an avid beta-reader, proofreader and editor who enjoys reading fantasy, crime and thriller books.

He loves watching action movies like The Matrix, Harry Potters and has a soft spot for sitcoms like Friends and The Big Bang Theory.

In 2013 he published his first novel, THE BEHOLDER, and a paranormal suspense novella, DIARY OF THE GONE. In March 2015, the sequel to THE BEHOLDER, PATH OF THE HERETIC, was published.

bookgiveaway

The author is offering up a great giveaway prize for 1 winner:
– 1 ecopy of THE BEHOLDER
– 1 ecopy of PATH OF THE HERETIC (THE BEHOLDER #2)
(Both copies will be gifted to the winner via Amazon).

Awesome right?! For your chance to win, please fill out the Giveaway Tools widget below. I’d love if you left a comment for the author as well. 🙂 Giveaway ends 4/20/15 at 11:59PM EST and winner will be randomly selected from all eligible entries and notified via email. Please see giveaway widget for full rules and regulations.

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