Read the first chapter of The Blood Will Dry

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Stepping out of the car was like opening a hot oven and climbing inside. The sun beat down on my head while a burst of fiery air engulfed me, coating my skin in stickiness in five seconds flat. Even the tiny sundress I wore didn’t help. Not during the worst heat wave Ohio had seen in years. Not when there wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the air was sticky enough to curl even the straightest hair.

“Thank God for air conditioning,” I said as I slammed the door shut.

Only Michael’s head was visible from the other side of the car, and under the brilliant summer sun, his golden hair shone enough to blind someone. He shot me a smile that made the already bright day seem ten times brighter, and my knees wobbled just like they had when we’d first met. You would think I’d be over that by now. That a surprise pregnancy and the drama we’d been through with his family would have killed the butterflies that had taken up residence in my stomach. But it hadn’t, and I was starting to think nothing could, because I loved this man more than I could have ever thought possible. It was so intense that it felt like something out of a fairy tale or a Nicholas Sparks novel. A love that would transcend time and death and any other obstacle that got in our way.

“It isn’t even that hot yet.” Michael lifted his head toward the flawless blue sky. It was the same color as his eyes, although not nearly as breathtaking. “It’s only June.”

“Great,” I muttered as I headed to the back door, thinking about our shitty little apartment and the nearly useless window unit.

The thing worked in the broad sense of the word. It sputtered out cool air well enough, accompanied by a fine mist of water most of the time. It was all we could afford at the moment though, and even that was only because Michael had given plasma three days a week last summer so he could save up for the thing. Of course, back then we’d had it in our bedroom because I’d been big and round, and so hot that I’d found it impossible to sleep most nights. After he’d installed the little window unit I’d stretched out on the floor in front of it—totally naked—and sighed in contentment as it pinged me with icy drops of water. It had been such a relief that I didn’t even care that I was covered in goose bumps.

Now the window unit was in Cassidy’s room because she needed it more than we did. Although, with this heat wave sweeping the state, I had been seriously considering moving her crib to the master bedroom for the summer so we could all enjoy the bought air.

The back door squeaked in protest when I pulled it open. I leaned in, smiling so big that it made me feel like that freaky cat from Alice in Wonderland, and my eight-month-old daughter smiled back me. She squealed and her blue eyes shimmered the same way her father’s did when he was happy, while on her head the blond ringlets bounced back and forth.

“Hi, princess,” I said as I worked to get her out of the secondhand car seat we’d lucked into.

She squealed again, this time kicking her feet as well. She actually reached out for me, and it did something to my insides. Caused this pang in my chest that made it feel like she was holding my heart in her hand, squeezing it gently the way she did when she wrapped her fingers around one of mine. It was the most beautiful feeling in the history of the world.

I scooped her up and planted a kiss on her forehead as I turned. Michael was ready and waiting with the shitty umbrella stroller I’d managed to scrape up enough money buy. It was from Wal-Mart, so at least it wasn’t secondhand, but it was nothing compared to the fancy things I saw other moms pushing around at the park. Strollers that were made of chrome and converted for all the different stages in your baby’s life, that had baskets underneath so you didn’t have to lug bags around, and cup holders for that five dollar caffeine fix from Starbucks. Luxuries I knew nothing about.

None of that matters, I told myself as I strapped Cassidy into the stroller. One day things will be better. We have time to make something of ourselves. This is just a pit stop in our lives.

Michael was much better with the pep talks than I was.

I stood so I could look him in the eye, the man I loved so much. Our beautiful daughter was between us, strapped into the cheapest stroller money could buy. Next to us the rusty piece of junk that represented our only form of transportation sat baking in the sun, which wasn’t doing the already faded and chipped paint any favors. It had once been red, but now looked more on the pink side, which was a constant source of teasing between Michael and me. I loved pointing out how manly he looked driving around in a pink car. Not that he cared or complained.

“Tell me this is only temporary,” I said.

He couldn’t read my mind, but he knew what I was talking about. We had this same conversation several times a week. Every time a bill came in that I couldn’t pay or we had to spend the last of the money in our checking account on diapers. We were struggling, but we were getting through. Together.

“It’s only temporary.”

He flashed me another smile and I marveled at his straight, white teeth. Teeth that had seen the best orthodontics money could buy as a young teen. Teeth that represented someone who’d had parents who wanted perfection from their child. So much so that when he’d made a mistake they’d decided the only appropriate response was to cut him out of their lives and focus all their efforts on his younger brother.

“You’re happy?” I asked even though I knew he was.

“I’m happy.” He pulled the umbrella stroller back a few steps, maneuvering it behind our piece of shit car. “I don’t need a big house or lots of money. I just need you and Cass.”

When he held his hand out I took it, allowing him to pull me up next to him. I snuggled into his side, loving his body heat even though we were both sticky and gross from the hot summer day. He kissed the top of my head and I pulled back just enough so I could look up into his eyes.

“I love you,” I said.

“Love you,” he replied, and his grin stretched wider. “Now can we please get out of this damn heat?”

I laughed. “Yes. Please.”

He let me go so he could push the stroller and I linked my arm through his as we walked. The mall was packed today and we’d had to park near the back of the lot. In the stroller Cassidy kicked her feet excitedly and squealed. She was a happy baby, thank God, and had only gone through a few bouts of extreme fussiness during her eight months of life. Michael and I had been told by numerous people how difficult this would be, and they’d all been right. Having a baby at the age of eighteen with no help or support was hard, to say the least. But no one had told us how amazing it would be. No one had warned me that this little girl would steal my heart the first time I held her, or that seeing Michael rock her to sleep would make me love him more than ever. No one had told me that all I really needed to be happy were the two people at my side, and that cable and internet were a luxury I wouldn’t miss as long as I told myself that I was doing all of this so I could be with the man I loved and we could raise our baby together.

Michael could have made a much different choice, an easier one that would have had him at Harvard right now—his family Alma Mater—instead of struggling through community college while working forty hours a week. He could have chosen his family over me. But he hadn’t, and I was determined to never let him regret that choice.

I leaned my head against his arm as we walked. “Thanks for choosing me.”

“Thanks for being so amazing,” he replied.

Even with the heat it felt like a picture perfect moment, which of course couldn’t last when you had an infant in tow. We’d just reached the door to the mall when Cassidy spit up. I tried not to groan, but it wasn’t easy, especially knowing that I wouldn’t have the money to go to the laundromat for at least another three days.

Michael stopped outside the mall entrance and knelt in front of the stroller while I dug through the diaper bag I’d slung over my shoulder. Of course, I knew it was pointless. The bag was the only thing I could afford and it was way too small to fit everything I needed, meaning the extra clothes we had were in the car.

“I’m going to have to run back,” I said, holding the bag out for Michael to take. “Get her inside and out of the heat.”

He stood as he took the bag. “I can go.”

I shook my head just as someone passed us on the way into the mall. When they pulled the door open a burst of cool air swept over me and I almost groaned. All I wanted to do was walk around the mall in the AC for a few hours.

“It’s fine,” I lied and held my hand out for the keys.

Michael frowned as he slipped them into my hand, but he didn’t argue. I knew he was tired. He’d worked yesterday after staying up late so he could study for a calculus test, and then he’d been nice enough to let me sleep in when Cassidy got up at six in the morning. The man was a saint, so the least I could do was hike back to the car and grab the extra clothes. Heat or no heat, I owed him that much.

“I’ll be right back,” I said as I walked backward. “Go inside.”

Michael gave me one last smile before heading toward the door.

I turned my back on him and headed across the parking lot, dodging pieces of gum that were baking in the heat and a now melted pile of ice cream that some kid had probably dropped. The sun was directly over me, beating down on my head like it was trying to scorch my scalp. My body was so sticky from sweat that I knew when I finally did make it inside the mall the first burst of cool air would feel too cold and uncomfortable. I could already imagine how the goose bumps would pop up on my moist flesh and how my already wet clothes would cling to my body, almost as if they had been suddenly frozen to my skin.

I unlocked the trunk when I reached our car and the hinges groaned in protest. A woman with two kids under the age of ten passed and gave me a disgusted look. I knew what her expression said, what she thought when she saw me standing beside this piece of junk. I knew that she could somehow tell my clothes were from Goodwill. I did my best to ignore her judgment, but it was impossible. It wasn’t easy getting used to being trash.

This is only temporary, I told myself again.

It took a few minutes of digging through the trunk’s contents to find what I was looking for, but only because I had so many just in case baby items crammed in there that finding the onesie was like going on a scavenger hunt. I held it up to make sure it was clean and a pang twisted my insides. I’d window shopped at baby boutiques countless times, wishing that I could get Cassidy one of the adorable ruffled rompers in the window or the frilly dress that was as impractical as it was beautiful, but this simple onesie was the best I could do. At least it had flowers on it. At least the pattern was pretty and the fabric was soft instead of stark white and scratchy.

I sighed as I slammed the trunk shut, still picturing the romper with the lacy butt and imagining what my little darling would have looked like crawling away from me in that precious little outfit.

One day she will have that, I told myself. One day Cassidy will have everything.

For just a moment, I truly believed it was true.

The blast happened just as I turned to face the mall. The violence of it threw me through the air in a burst of pain and heat, and I landed so hard that all the air whooshed out of my lungs. I couldn’t move, and all around me the world was engulfed in deafening sounds that made it impossible to think. The crunch of metal and glass came from all sides, and above that was a roar I couldn’t comprehend. It was so loud that I had to cover my ears, but that did nothing to block out the noise. It felt like it would crush me with its strength. Like the world was imploding and I would soon be sucked into the heat and noise surrounding me.

Above me, the previously cloudless sky had turned dark. Black and gray clouds bubbled up as if from nowhere and stretched across the sky, growing bigger and darker with each passing second. There was nothing natural about them. They seemed to be centralized, as if they were all coming from the same spot and pushing their way out in hopes of engulfing every inch of blue, and they were darker than even the darkest storm cloud. Threatening. Terrifying.

I had to gasp a few times before I was finally able to fill my lungs, and even though the air was grimy with dirt, it helped bring my mind into sharper focus. My heart was pounding in my ears as I took stock of my body, wiggling fingers and toes, moving limbs. Everything hurt, but there didn’t seem to be any major damage, and once I was sure I was basically okay, I forced myself to sit up.

That’s when the mall came into view. Or at least the spot where the mall had once stood.

“No,” I mumbled as I scrambled over rubble and glass to get to my feet. “No!”

My legs were shaking as I hurried forward, and more than once I fell to the ground, cutting my knees in the process, but I made myself get back up. I couldn’t trust my eyes. I knew it had to be a mirage and that if I could just get there I’d discover that everything was exactly as it was supposed to be. So I ran, passing mangled cars that had been thrown during the blast and heaps of rubble that had come from nowhere. The cars were now on top of one another, reduced to twisted pieces of metal and glass that looked nothing like the vehicles they had once been, and all around me there were piles of rock or mangled metal that had to have come from the blast.

The sky grew darker by the second, and my heart pounded harder with each step I took. The closer I got, the less I was able to deny what I was seeing. It was as if the mall had been blown off the face of the earth or sucked into the ground. There was nothing but a crater now. A hole in the pavement that when I dropped to my knees in front of it and peered down, seemed to go on forever. It was deep and wide and black and crushing in its magnitude.

“No,” I said again, this time covering my face with my hands.

My body shook with sobs, and when another explosion rocked the ground beneath me, this time further away, I was only half aware of it. It wasn’t until another one exploded through the air that I pulled my hands from my face. In the distance, a fireball lit up the sky. Above it there was a mass of dark clouds, just like the ones over my head right now. The little bit of sunlight that was still able to penetrate the darkness glinted off cars as they went flying, and a few seconds later another explosion sounded to my right, and then another to my left, and another behind me until it felt as if I had been sucked into a war movie.

I knew I wasn’t safe where I was, but I couldn’t bring myself to care or leave. The sobs shaking my body were too violent, too devastating. It felt as if I would explode just as the mall had, and I couldn’t find it in me to care. Not even a little.

It wasn’t until I squeezed my hands into fists that I realized I was holding something. I looked down and blinked, but I had to force my fingers to relax so I could open my hand. The little purple flowers on the onesie felt like knives in my chest, and in that moment I knew I would never be the same.

Want to read more?? Get the book on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited now!

Coming Soon: THE BLOOD WILL DRY

The Blood Will Dry

An Alien Apocalypse Romance Novel

August 15, 2017

Five years after an alien invasion, the earth is unrecognizable. The human race has been decimated and the sun completely blotted out by dark clouds that bring constant rain. All indigenous plant life has been killed off and replaced by vegetation that has proven to be as deadly as it is invasive, and the aliens that have taken over the planet are seemingly invincible.

Living in a crowded building with other survivors, Diana Foster wants nothing more than to forget what she lost the day the aliens arrived. But an incoming platoon brings a familiar face, one that not only opens old wounds, but also forces her to deal with the painful memories she’s worked hard to forget. Bryan may not be the same cocky kid he was before the invasion, but his sudden appearance still turns Diana’s world upside down in ways she never expected. When he showed up she knew it would mean finally facing her past, but she never thought she’d find a future that was actually worth living.

After years of struggling to find a weakness in the aliens’ defenses, Diana stumbles upon a solution just as a new and more deadly threat surfaces. Faced with an attraction she never expected and a battle that most believe can’t be won, Diana must work through her painful past as the survivors mount a battle that may determine the fate of mankind. If her plan fails it very well could be the end of humanity, but if works it will mean having a real future, and a chance to allow the blood to dry once and for all.

Available for Pre-order NOW!

 

TWISTED MEMORIES is live!

It’s FINALLY here!
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Twenty years ago Angus James woke to find himself in a sterile room. On the other side of the locked door, doctors worked to manipulate a virus, using him as their ultimate pin cushion. He was supposed to be dead – and there were moments over the next two decades when he wished he was – but despite his torturous existence, he remained a fighter. Through pain, love, loss, and heartbreak, Angus traveled a road that took him on a journey much bigger than the room he was confined to. As the world move forward without him, he fought to hold onto as much of himself as he could, determined to make it out of his prison a whole man. 

Outside the walls of the CDC, Angus’s family worked to move on. But between the dark rumors surrounding the man in charge and a twisted new religion that threatened to turn their lives upside down, starting over has began to seem impossible. With more and more of the freedoms being stripped away, and more devastating losses piling up around them, the group found themselves wishing they’d never set foot in New Atlanta in the first place.
And wondering if leaving was even an option
 
Travel back with Twisted Memories and experience the emotional journey Angus James was forced to take during his twenty years as a prisoner. Discover how he came to be a father, what he did to stay sane during his long confinement, and how he managed to earn his freedom. 

CLICK HERE to get Twisted Memories now!

 

Twisted Memories is now available for Pre-order

It’s finally almost here!

Twisted Memories is available for Pre-order and will be live June 7th!TM background3

Twenty years ago Angus James woke to find himself in a sterile room. On the other side of the locked door, doctors worked to manipulate a virus, using him as their ultimate pin cushion. He was supposed to be dead – and there were moments over the next two decades when he wished he was – but despite his torturous existence, he remained a fighter. Through pain, love, loss, and heartbreak, Angus traveled a road that took him on a journey much bigger than the room he was confined to. As the world move forward without him, he fought to hold onto as much of himself as he could, determined to make it out of his prison a whole man. 

Outside the walls of the CDC, Angus’s family worked to move on. But between the dark rumors surrounding the man in charge and a twisted new religion that threatened to turn their lives upside down, starting over has began to seem impossible. With more and more of the freedoms being stripped away, and more devastating losses piling up around them, the group found themselves wishing they’d never set foot in New Atlanta in the first place.
And wondering if leaving was even an option
 
Travel back with Twisted Memories and experience the emotional journey Angus James was forced to take during his twenty years as a prisoner. Discover how he came to be a father, what he did to stay sane during his long confinement, and how he managed to earn his freedom. 

CLICK HERE to pre-order Twisted Memories now!

 

HUGE ebook Sale

For the first time ever ALL my ebooks are on sale for ONLY 99 cents each. This may never happen again, so grab them while you can! May 1st-9th only, you can get all seven books in the Amazon best-selling BROKEN WORLD series, as well as over a dozen other ebooks. Young adult, new adult, romance, dystopian, zombie apocalypse, and post-apocalyptic fiction!
 
CLICK HERE to get these great books!

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Sale and Contest

Today, I have a fun surprise that I’d like to share with you. I’ve teamed up with 10 fantastic sci-fi romance authors to offer some great post-apocalyptic reads for $2.99 or less! My novel MOONCHILD is on sale for $0.99, along with books from authors like Eve Silver and Heather Knight.
Check out all the books here: bit.ly/post-apoc-rom-sale 
Happy reading! 
~Kate
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NEW Novella-The Key to Survival

The Key to Survival

39,000 Words

Key

After finding her fiancé in a compromising position, Jane heads to a private island resort in Key West to clear her head. There she meets Austin, six years younger than she is and the exact opposite of her fiancé in every way, he seems like the perfect prescription to cure her heartbreak. But everything changes when the virus that had previously only been a minor nuisance morphs into a full-blown epidemic. Three miles from the mainland and surrounded by ocean, Austin and Jane believe they’re safe from what’s happening in the world, but a virus knows no borders, and it isn’t long before other guests start coming down with the illness. 

Zombie isn’t a word that anyone likes to throw around, but it’s the only explanation the couple can think of when one of the other hotel guests tries to eat Austin’s face off. As things go from bad to worse and Jane leans on Austin more and more, she soon finds herself wondering if her little trip to Florida wasn’t just the key to her survival, but also the key to finding a man who will love her the way she deserves.

Available NOW on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Coming Soon: Alone

alone


A Zombie Novel
Coming March 29, 2016


Two years after the zombie virus has wiped out most of the population, eighteen-year-old Jules is trying to adjust to the world she now finds herself in. When her father relocates them to a settlement in South Carolina, Jules is afraid she’s going to miss Washington DC, the only home she’s ever known. But Hilton Head has its benefits, namely Roman. Their attraction is instantaneous, but as more and more hurdles are thrown their way, the two begin to consider the idea of leaving for one of the unsanctioned settlements.

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Forgotten World is Live

The sixth book in the Broken World series is finally here!

Get FORGOTTEN WORLD for Kindle and Kindle Unlimited now!

You can also order a signed paperback of FORGOTTEN WORLD from me by sending me a message on my Facebook Page!

New World, book six in the Broken World series, continues following a group of survivors after a super-virus has decimated the human race and the dead have come back to claim it as their own…

After the longest winter of her life, Vivian is thrilled to have Ginny back at her side. But joy soon turns to shock when the group learns that not only is Hope Springs in contact with other survivors, but that the CDC is working on a vaccine. And Angus could be the last hope for the human race.

With an armed escort, the group sets out on a mission to get Angus to Atlanta. But the world proves to be more dangerous than the people of Hope Springs believed, and their lack of preparation ends in deadly results. Vivian knows they must get Angus to Atlanta if they want to save the human race, but it doesn’t take long to discover that this might be the most dangerous journey they have ever made. With trouble around every corner and their losses piling up, the stakes are higher than ever before.

No Regrets is Now Available!

 

 

 

 

No Regrets

College of Charleston series, #2

Kate L. Mary

NA Contemporary Romance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

╣Synopsis╠

  

College is supposed to be fun…

Go to parties

Pick up guys

Maybe get in a little trouble

On the surface Cami is your average, wild teenager out to have a good time, but inside she’s struggling. Almost a year ago her best friend was in a car accident, an accident Cami feels responsible for. Since then, she’s made it her personal mission to experience everything life has to offer, both for herself and for Julie, who will never have fun again.

Then she meets Liam, her cousin’s sexy roommate. Hooking up with a hot British dude seems like the perfect way to start off the school year, but the more time she spends with him, the more she finds herself actually liking the guy. Which totally screws up her plans to live life with no regrets…

 

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╣Excerpt╠

 

      By the time Friday rolled around I had talked myself into believing the whole thing with Liam was nothing serious. He’d invited me over to his place because Ryan had a date, which I took to mean he wanted to be alone with me. In my head, I was kind of picturing the evening being more like a booty call. We’d enjoy a quick romp in the sack while Ryan was out on his date, then order a pizza. Maybe go for round two if we had time.

      That wasn’t exactly what happened, though.

      When I got there, Liam answered the door with a big smile on his face and a dozen pink roses in his hand. It was adorable and definitely made my heart skip so many times I wondered if it was playing jump rope. He’d really thrown me off my game.

      “Wow,” I said, taking the bundle of roses and giving them a sniff. “I wasn’t expecting flowers.”

      “I noticed your mobile case was pink, so I thought you’d like the color.”

      Okay, so maybe it was a little cliché, but pink was my favorite color. And the fact that Liam had noticed was so sweet I found it difficult to speak. Which for me meant a lot. It also made him about a million times hotter, and made me want him about a billion times more. Go figure.

      Liam held the door open so I could go inside. He didn’t even make a move to kiss me, which totally blew because at that moment I was imagining sucking on his bottom lip.

      The guys didn’t have a table in their apartment, which was why I’d kind of figured Liam and I would be lying naked in bed with a box of pizza between us. There was, however, a small bar between the living room and kitchen. That’s where Liam had set out two plates and two wineglasses, along with a bottle of what appeared to be champagne. He even had a candle lit. And the apartment smelled a-maz-ing!

      “Did you cook?” I asked, standing in front of the bar with my mouth hanging open.

      I’d never had a guy buy me flowers before, and I definitely hadn’t thought for a second Liam would. Plus, he’d actually cooked. For me. It was like his body had been taken over by pod people.

      “Of course.” He grinned and picked up the bottle of champagne. “I invited you over for dinner. What did you expect, pizza?”

“Umm…yes?”

      Liam laughed and ripped the foil off the bottle. He turned it away from me while he worked on getting the cork out. The pop was so loud it made me jump, and the cork flew about three feet through the air before hitting the kitchen cabinet. I was kind of wishing he had aimed at me. Right at my head. Maybe the jolt would have helped me make sense of the situation, because I was totally confused.

      Liam filled the glasses and handed me one. “We have about fifteen minutes before dinner is ready.”

      I stared at the champagne in my hand and frowned. “You know you don’t have to get me drunk, right?”

      “What are talking about?” He paused with his glass halfway to his lips.

      Liam looked hurt, which made me feel like a total bitch. He’d gone to so much trouble with the whole thing, but I couldn’t even enjoy it because all I was thinking about was jumping his bones. Yeah, I was being a mega bitch.

      “I’m kidding.” I forced out a smile and held up the glass. “This is awesome. Thanks!”

      He relaxed and returned the smile, and we clinked our glasses together.

      Even though I didn’t get the booty call I’d been hoping for, the night was pretty sweet. Liam turned out to be a really good cook. He’d made spaghetti, which didn’t sound like a big deal until he revealed he’d made his own sauce. Color me impressed. Plus, he’d made the meatballs too.

      I was pretty full after stuffing my face full of Italian food, so I couldn’t eat dessert right away. Cheesecake drizzled with caramel, chocolate, and chopped pecans. Where the hell did this guy come from? While we waited for our food to digest, we sat in the living room and talked.

      “So you mentioned you have a sister. Any other siblings?” I asked, sipping the champagne. The bubbles tickled my lips and made me giggle.

      “Just the sister,” he said. “Half sister, really. We have different dads. My mum was married to Elisabeth’s dad for about ten years. They split up, but he’s still around. Treats me like a son too.”

      “What about your biological father? Does he live in England?”

      “No, actually. He lives in the States, which is why I’m here.”

      He took a drink of his own champagne while he studied me. I got the feeling he didn’t talk about his dad a whole lot and he was debating whether or not to tell me more. I honestly wasn’t sure how much I wanted him to share. I was really starting to like Liam—like him like him—and I was afraid if I got too attached, it would thwart some of my wilder plans for college life. I couldn’t really pick up guys in bars and go home with them if I was in a relationship.

      Plus, I’d promised Julie I wouldn’t settle down until I was a hundred years old. At least.

      Liam must have decided I was worth making himself vulnerable, because he said, “He has a place here, actually.”

      “Really? In Charleston?” It was a bit of a surprise since he hadn’t mentioned it before, but it explained why he was here. Kind of. He did say his dad was a jerk.

      Liam nodded. “Isle of Palms. You remember the beach house the frat party was at?”

      Was he kidding? How could I forget the beach house? Not only was it pretty much the nicest and most expensive building I’d ever set foot in, we’d shared a pretty amazing moment in that upstairs bedroom. Just thinking about it made my body shiver with pleasure.

      I put my hand on his leg and smiled up at him. “I remember very specific things about the beach house.”

      “You did seem to have a pretty brilliant time.” Liam flashed me a lopsided grin that showed off those adorably crooked teeth of his. God, was I glad his mom never got him braces.

      “It wasn’t nearly enough, trust me.” I ran my fingers gently up his thigh.

      Liam cleared his throat and shifted his whole body until he was sitting almost out of my reach. My hand was still on his knee at least. “You know you’re making it bloody difficult for me to turn over a new leaf, right?”

      “I like your old leaf,” I said, flashing him a pout.

      “Right.” Liam chuckled and shook his head. “That house belongs to my dad.”

      My hand froze on his leg. There weren’t many things that could have distracted me from all the dirty thoughts going through my head, but that was definitely one of them.

      “Your dad owns that mansion on the beach?”

      “He may be a tosser, but he happens to be a very rich tosser. He’s why I came here, really. He threw my mum money over the years, but it wasn’t much. She couldn’t pay for me to go to uni, and it was either beg my dad for the money or work my own way through. I really wanted to tell him to sod off, but I felt like he owed me. Anyway, he agreed to pay my way, but only if I came here. Said he wanted to get to know me. Maybe he’s gone soft in his old age, I don’t know. Whatever the reason, I saw it as my only option.”

      “So he’s not a total tosser then?” I loved all the British slang, so was sure to emphasize the word.

      Liam chuckled again. “No, I guess he’s not a total tosser.”

      I mulled the whole thing over as I emptied my glass. Liam wanted to turn over a new leaf. His dad was a prick and he didn’t want to be that way, which I could understand and even respect. But what did that mean for us? He’d made me dinner, bought me flowers, and opened up to me all in one night. It was starting to feel dangerously close to girlfriend territory.

      Which was something I was going to have to get a handle on real soon.

      I set my glass on the table, then took his and did the same. He eyed me as I scooted closer to him, as if he was afraid I was going to attack. Of course, he was right to be concerned. I was going to attack, and I wanted things to go my way for a change.

      I leaned closer, waiting for him to make a move to kiss me or stop me from kissing him. The conflict in his eyes was obvious. He thought it was a bad idea. Unfortunately for him, I thought it was pretty much the best idea I’d had in a very long line of great ideas.

      “Let me thank you for dinner,” I said, moving until our faces were less than an inch apart.

      We were so close I could see little specks of brown in his eyes. My nose grazed his and he sucked in a deep breath. His very intense gaze moved down to my mouth. Then his lips brushed against mine and he closed his eyes. I followed his lead, squeezing my eyes shut as our mouths moved together. Quickly. So fast it took my breath away. Liam thrust his tongue into my mouth and slid his hand up my back, gripping my neck. Not just holding me there, but pulling me closer to him. Like he might never be able to get enough.

 


╣About the Author╠

Kate L. Mary is a stay-at-home mother of four and an Air Force wife. She grew up in a small town just north of Dayton, Ohio where she and her husband met at the age of twelve. Since their marriage in 2002, they have lived in Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and California.

Kate enjoys any post-apocalyptic story – especially if zombies are involved – as long as there is a romantic twist to give the story hope. Kate prefers nerdy, non-traditional heroes who can make you laugh to hunky pieces of man-meat, and her love of wine and chocolate is legendary among her friends and family. She currently resides in Oklahoma with her husband and children.

Be sure to check out her bestselling BROKEN WORLD series, which is a top 100 book in dystopian and post-apocalyptic fiction on Amazon.

 


 

╣Social Media╠

 

 

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╣Other Books╠

 

THE LIST
Book 1 in the College of Charleston Series
Available NOW

The List. Twenty things every girl must do before she turns twenty…
The List-highres_edited
Body piercing
Get drunk
First kiss
But thanks to her crazy, over-protective father, Annie Roth is way behind schedule. Good thing it’s her first semester of college, because Annie is more than ready to start checking off items. . .
Fake ID
Skinny dipping
Road trip!!!
Where it gets complicated? Ryan and Chris. Best friends. Both sweet, funny, totally hot, and totally into Annie.
But there are some things on The List that Annie only wants to do with Ryan. . .
Lose it
Get Heart Broken
Fall in love

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Find on Goodreads


Moving On
Book 3 in the College of Charleston Series
Coming February 2016 Pre-Order Now!

After a year with her dying aunt, Bette knows what she wants from life.Moving-On-mockup3
1. Keep Aunt Missy’s House
Chris Pressley is the perfect roommate—uptight and damaged and hung up on his ex. And hot. Bette doesn’t date, but she definitely likes looking.
2. Get Her Dream Job
Chris just needs to get away from the happiest couple on campus: the sweet, shy girl he loves and his former best friend. Watching Bette rock her tattoos and her curves even as she builds her own business is an education. That’s probably why he can’t keep his mind off her…
3. Never Compromise
Bette isn’t interested in changing for anyone. But the heat rising between her and Chris won’t leave her the same…

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Coming February 16, 2016 from Lyrical Press

Find on Goodreads

Special Price Drop for BROKEN WORLD

BrokenWorldSeries_5_PerspectiveFor the first time EVER, I am doing a temporary price drop on ALL the books in the Broken World series!

giphy-2

Do I have your attention? Do you want to know more?

jlys

I know what you’re thinking:

How much are they going to be?

AND

When is this happening?

The answers:

$0.99 EACH

AND

September 10th-16th

Sale

giphy

So what are you waiting for! Hurry over to Amazon and get them for Kindle NOW!!

MY AMAZON PAGE SO YOU CAN GET ALL 5 BOOKS

Gifs courtesy of Giphy.com

New Cover for COLLISION

I’ve had some extra time this weekend since I’m recovering from minor surgery, so I took the time to revamp my cover for Collision. I always said I was going to rework it after I wrote the sequel, but since I’m still not sure when that’s going to fit into my schedule, I figured why wait? Anyway, I really like the ending result and I think it stands out a lot more than the old cover did!

 

Revised Collsion Cover

 

When eighteen-year-old Kara Jones gets into a car accident on the way home from college, she’s left with more than a few bruised ribs, a busted cell phone, and a totaled car. After a slip-up at the hospital, she’s shaken to discover that her family isn’t all it seems. And now her mother’s strange behavior and willingness to do anything to protect her secrets—including pulling Kara out of school—have Kara floundering in the dark.

Enter Derek Miller, a former classmate who’s dealing with family issues of his own. His nerdy charm is too much for Kara to resist, and she’s even more amazed when he agrees to help her dig into her mother’s past. Together they investigate her mother’s old friends and boyfriends, hoping to discover who Kara really is. Instead, they find disturbing connections to the dark history of Kent State University, and an ever expanding maze of mystery surrounding Kara’s birth.

As Kara and Derek chase secrets, she realizes he’s the only person she can trust. But as they get closer to the truth, the disturbing answers reveal a web of evil far darker and further reaching than they’d imagined, leaving Kara to wish she’d never asked the questions in the first place.

You can get Collision now on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited!

 

Mad World Release

cover (1)_edited

 

 

 

 

Mad World
(#3
, Broken World series)

by Kate L. Mary

Post-Apocalyptic/Zombie Series

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

╣Synopsis╠

 

Mad World is the third book in the Broken World series, which follows a group of survivors after a super-virus has destroyed the world and the dead have come back to claim it as their own…

Vivian didn’t think things could get any worse than losing Emily, and getting to the shelter should have been their salvation. But once again their hopes where shattered when they found out things weren’t as safe as promised, forcing them to head into Vegas in search of supplies.

 

Vivian

But now Vivian and Hadley find themselves in a situation more threatening than even the dead walking the Earth. Kidnapped by armed men and taken deep into Vegas, they’re cut-off from anyone who cares about them and thrust into a world so sick and twisted it can only be described as madness. Knowing that Axl has no idea where they are and little hope of finding them, Vivian and Hadley must team up with one of the very men who abducted them if they have any hope of escaping their new nightmare.

 

Axl

Watching Vivian get thrown into the back of a van almost tears Axl apart, and he’s determined to find her no matter what it takes. With the growing tension between him and Angus, Axl finds himself wondering if the price will be his relationship with his brother. Putting both old and new wounds aside, Axl and Angus must infiltrate the group holding Vivian and Hadley, and make their escape through a zombie-ridden Vegas.

But the men in charge of Vegas aren’t the type to easily forget, and the group soon discovers that getting the girls out alive very well could mean the end for them all…


 

╣Excerpts╠

 

_______________

Axl

     I push my way through the group of people gathered ‘round ‘til I find a face I don’t recognize. He’s a preppy-lookin’ bastard. Older than me, but probably not more than thirty. He’s clean. Obviously he ain’t been sleepin’ in no abandoned buildings, which means he’s with the bastards that took Vivian and Hadley.

     I slam him against the wall and push the barrel of my gun right between his eyes, pressin’ it into his skull. “Where the hell is she?”

     The guy swallows. His eyes are so big they look like they’re gonna pop outta his head. “You shoot me and you’ll never know,” he says in a surprisingly calm voice.

     My entire body shakes, and my finger’s just itchn’ to pull the trigger. But he’s right. I can’t shoot him. Not if I wanna find Vivian.

     But I could shoot his balls off.

     I jam my arm against his throat and press as hard as I can before movin’ my gun to his crotch. “I ain’t gonna kill you, but if you don’t tell me where she is, I guarantee that by the time I’m done with you, you’ll wish you had.”

     "The Monte Carlo! The Monte Carlo!” His voice ain’t calm no more.

     “I told ya!” Darla’s shrill voice screams out behind me.

     “Shut the fuck up,” I say, not takin’ my eyes off the tremblin’ guy in front of me. “She better be okay.”

     He nods as hard as he can with my arm pressed against his throat. “She’s fine. So is Hadley.”

     I wince. Damn. I shoulda asked ‘bout Hadley.

     Winston steps forward and puts his hand on my back. “Let him go, Axl. We need to let him talk if we’re going to figure out what’s going on."

     The muscles in my neck are stretched tight, and my arm twitches as I press it against the guy’s neck. I don’t wanna let him go. I wanna bash his damn face in.

_________________

 

Vivian

     I look back and forth between Axl and the fence. Between the zombies and my reason for life. “What about you?”

     The helicopter’s engine dies, and the moans of the dead break through the night sky. They’re louder than the roar of a hurricane. More menacing than a tornado. I can’t leave Axl.

     “I’ll cover you,” he yells. He spins to face the zombies. They round the corner. Fifteen feet away at the most.

     I grab his arm and pull him to the fence. “Come with me!”

     He shakes me off and looks down at my bare feet and legs. “You ain’t protected. Go!”

     There’s no way to convince him, plus he’s right. I’m much too exposed. I turn to the fence and climb. The metal digs into my hands and feet. The moans grow louder, and my legs shake, threatening to give out. I keep my head up so I won’t look back. Axl will be more focused if I’m safe. He can take care of himself. He will be okay. My heart races even faster.

     The fence is high. Maybe ten feet. My arms ache as they slowly pull my body up. I’m not even halfway there and already I’m shaky.

     A shot rings out behind me, and I scream.

     Keep moving. Don’t look down.

     The wind blows, showering me with bits of sand. My eyes sting and tear up. I blink, but it doesn’t help. A few tears slide down my cheeks. I hang onto the fence with one hand and use my free one to rub my eyes. They burn, but there’s no time to worry about that. I squint as more tears fall and pull myself up a little more. Halfway there.

     Axl grunts and Jon curses. Something slams against the fence, and the whole thing shakes. I grip the metal tighter. Fingers claw at my foot, and I scream. Kicking at them. They wrap around my ankle. I kick harder, and the fence sways. I can’t get away!

     My fingers curl around the metal links, and I glance down. What was once a man—his face now half-rotten—grips my ankle. His foul teeth chomp, and he moans like he’s in pain. Jon is on the ground, struggling with a zombie. Another one has Axl pinned against the fence. His knife is on the ground.

 


 

╣About the Author╠

Kate L. Mary is a stay-at-home mother of four and an Air Force wife. She spent most of her life in a small town just north of imageDayton, Ohio where she and her husband met at the age of twelve. Since their marriage in 2002, they have lived in Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and California.

Kate enjoys any post-apocalyptic story – especially if zombies are involved – as long as there is a romantic twist to give the story hope. Kate prefers nerdy, non-traditional heroes that can make you laugh to hunky pieces of man-meat, and her love of wine and chocolate is legendary among her friends and family. She currently resides in Oklahoma with her husband and children.


 

╣Social Media╠

 

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╣Other Books╠

Broken World (Broken World #1)

When a deadly virus sweeps the country, Vivian Thomas sets out for California in hopes of seeing the daughter she gave up for adoption. Then her car breaks down and she’s faced with a choice. Give up, or accept a ride from redneck brothers, Angus and Axl. Vivian knows the offer has more to do with her double D’sBrokenWorldCover than kindness, but she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to reach her daughter.

The virus is spreading, and by the time the group makes it to California, most of the population has been wiped out. When the dead start coming back, Vivian and the others realize that no electricity or running water are the least of their concerns. Now Vivian has to figure out how to be a mother under the most frightening circumstances, cope with Angus’s aggressive mood swings, and sort out her growing attraction to his brooding younger brother, Axl.

While searching for a safe place to go, they pick up a pompous billionaire who may be the answer to all their problems. Trusting him means going into the middle of the Mojave Desert and possibly risking their lives, but with the streets overrun and nowhere else to turn, it seems he might be their only chance for survival.

Buy on Amazon

 

Shattered World (Broken World #2)

***Warning: Contains Spoilers for Broken World***

Stranded in the middle of the Mojave Desert, surrounded by zombies, Vivian and Axl are sure they’reShattered World Cover facing the end. The dead are closing in and the shelter they were promised is sealed tight. Just when they think they’ve run out of time, the doors are thrown open. Five years underground with all the provisions there for the taking. It’s almost too good to be true. With the promise of security, Vivian hopes she’ll finally able to deal with the loss of Emily, her growing feelings for Axl, and the terrifying new world they’re facing.

But their sense of security is soon shattered when they discover the shelter isn’t the utopia they thought it would be. It seems the company that built the shelter decided to solve their financial problems by selling off provisions, which means the group has to find a way to get supplies. Or face starvation.

And Vegas is the closest city.

With her feelings for Axl stronger than ever, Vivian volunteers to accompany him and a few others on a trip into one of the biggest tourist cities in the world. Vegas is overrun with the dead, but there are other survivors as well. Only not everyone they meet is a welcome sight. As the emotional baggage piles up, Vivian and Axl’s bond grows stronger, but it doesn’t take long to realize that zombies aren’t the only thing they have to fear.

Buy on Amazon

Shattered World is Live!

Shattered World
(#2, Broken World series)

by Kate L. Mary

Post-Apocalyptic/Zombie Series

Amazon Barnes & NobleKoboGoogle Play

Shattered World Cover

 

synopsis
***Warning: Contains Spoilers for Broken World***

Stranded in the middle of the Mojave Desert, surrounded by zombies, Vivian and Axl are sure they’re facing the end. The dead are closing in and the shelter they were promised is sealed tight. Just when they think they’ve run out of time, the doors are thrown open. Five years underground with all the provisions there for the taking. It’s almost too good to be true. With the promise of security, Vivian hopes she’ll finally able to deal with the loss of Emily, her growing feelings for Axl, and the terrifying new world they’re facing.

But their sense of security is soon shattered when they discover the shelter isn’t the utopia they thought it would be. It seems the company that built the shelter decided to solve their financial problems by selling off provisions, which means the group has to find a way to get supplies. Or face starvation.

And Vegas is the closest city.

With her feelings for Axl stronger than ever, Vivian volunteers to accompany him and a few others on a trip into one of the biggest tourist cities in the world. Vegas is overrun with the dead, but there are other survivors as well. Only not everyone they meet is a welcome sight. As the emotional baggage piles up, Vivian and Axl’s bond grows stronger, but it doesn’t take long to realize that zombies aren’t the only thing they have to fear.

Excerpt

“Here goes nothin’,” Axl says, echoing my thoughts.

He leans down and fools with the wires under the steering wheel. The dead bang against the car, but even more have surrounded the sedan. I dig my nails into my legs while I wait for Axl to do whatever he has planned. He grunts, and a few sparks fly. My entire body jerks when the deafening sound of the alarm rings through the car.

The world around us explodes. The bodies go crazy and converge on the car, banging on it with their hands, their bodies, their faces. They leave thick smears of black on the windows as they desperately try to get in. The door handle rattles, and some even climb on top of the car.

They’re wild and frantic. It’s so terrifying that for a moment I can’t remember exactly why we decided to do this. My heart pounds and I cover my ears, trying to block out the sounds of the hammering and the alarm. Trying to keep the terror at bay. All I want to do is run, but there’s nowhere to go. The realization that we’re stuck hits me so hard I start to shake.

Then the sedan drives off. It turns the corner with the truck close behind it, and I relax just a little. They’re going to make it. Nathan and his wife, their daughter. Two other little boys who have years ahead of them. Trey can get back to Parvarti and Winston to his daughter. They will have food and safety. That’s why we chose to commit suicide in this horrifying way.

Axl pries my hands away from my ears and pulls me against his chest. He wraps his arms around me as the pounding continues. He doesn’t say anything, and neither do I. All I can do is watch silently as the truck pulls out of sight.

After a few minutes, he turns the alarm off, but the damage is already done. They know we’re in here, and they won’t give up until they’ve broken in. A crack starts at the corner of the windshield and travels across. Then another. A dead man hurls himself against the glass and pounds his fists. Hundreds of cracks fan out across the windshield in a frightening web pattern, and I have to stifle the urge to scream. It’s safety glass, so it doesn’t give. At least not yet.

“I won’t let them get us.” Axl’s lips brush against my head, and strands of hair fall into my face. They tickle my nose, but I can’t find the motivation to move them aside.

I nod and swallow against the lump in my throat. He doesn’t mean he won’t let them get in, because we both know there’s nothing we can do about that now. Surprisingly though, I’m okay with it. A bullet to the brain sounds a lot better than being ripped apart by the undead.

Author

Kate L. Mary is a stay-at-home mother of four and an Air Force wife. She spent most of her life in a small town just north of imageDayton, Ohio where she and her husband met at the age of twelve. Since their marriage in 2002, they have lived in Georgia, Mississippi, South Carolina, and California.

Kate enjoys any post-apocalyptic story – especially if zombies are involved – as long as there is a romantic twist to give the story hope. Kate prefers nerdy, non-traditional heroes that can make you laugh to hunky pieces of man-meat, and her love of wine and chocolate is legendary among her friends and family. She currently resides in Oklahoma with her husband and children.

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WebsiteFacebookTwitter

other books

When a deadly virus sweeps the country, Vivian Thomas sets out for California in hopes of seeing the daughter she gave up for adoption. Then her car breaks down and she’s faced with a choice. Give up, or accept a ride from redneck brothers, Angus and Axl. Vivian knows the offer has more to do with her double D’sBrokenWorldCover than kindness, but she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to reach her daughter.

The virus is spreading, and by the time the group makes it to California, most of the population has been wiped out. When the dead start coming back, Vivian and the others realize that no electricity or running water are the least of their concerns. Now Vivian has to figure out how to be a mother under the most frightening circumstances, cope with Angus’s aggressive mood swings, and sort out her growing attraction to his brooding younger brother, Axl.

While searching for a safe place to go, they pick up a pompous billionaire who may be the answer to all their problems. Trusting him means going into the middle of the Mojave Desert and possibly risking their lives, but with the streets overrun and nowhere else to turn, it seems he might be their only chance for survival.

Amazon Barnes & NobleKoboGoogle Play

Temporary Price Drop for Collision

AmazonBarnes & NobleKoboGoogle Play

Collision is on Sale!
Until September 10th, Collision was only available on Amazon. Now that it’s up and running on B&N, Kobo and Google Play, I wanted to get the word out. That’s why I’m dropping the price to $0.99 for 2 weeks.

CollisionCover

 

 

FYI: I’m working on changing it on Google Play and Kobo, so if it isn’t there when you look, check back. Those sites are not as user friendly as Amazon and B&N.

Broken World is on Sale!

BrokenWorldSale

Only one month until Shattered World is released, so I’m gearing up for it by dropping the price of Broken World to $0.99 September 4th-10th!

Get it on Amazon!

Shattered World is available for Pre-order!

Shattered World Cover

 

 

Last night I was pretty excited to learn that Amazon now makes it possible to put your books up for pre-order!

Get ahead of the game and pre-order Shattered World today on Amazon!

Collision is on sale for $0.99

 

On sale now on Amazon!
Collision is $0.99 for one week only!CollisionSale

Check out what other readers are saying about Collision:

5 stars from Cryssy on Goodreads:
“One of the best books I have read this year. Completely original. Can’t believe this is from a new author.”

5 stars from Tamara on Goodreads:
“After reading the first chapter of this book, I couldn’t put it down. The author has a way of writing, that will have you wanting more.”

5 stars from Cajun Book Lover:
“This was a great book. I really enjoyed it and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a good mystery!”

4.5 stars from Through the Booking Glass:
“Great debut novel! This book grabbed me from the very beginning! It’s a twisted story that makes u think that a lie is sometimes better than the true & before u ask questions, make sure you can handle the answers!”

4.5 stars from Lustful Literature:
“I absolutely adored this book. The storyline was well written and I instantly fell in love with Derek. Kate did a great job pulling in and intertwining the lives of Kara and Derek. Once the plot line started playing out, I had a really hard time putting this book down.”

4 stars from Best Book Boyfriends:
“This is a really good suspenseful story, and I love Derek and Kara together. They’re just such a solid couple for two people who are really young. When Derek tells her he can see them together forever I swooned. Their chemistry is not only sexy, but they are also playful. It brings some levity to a suspenseful story.”

4 stars from Six Chicks and Their Love of Books:
“I devoured this book in one sitting. The story was compelling and suspenseful and i was hooked at the first chapter.”

4 stars from Up All Night Book Addict:
“I really liked where this book went. It was so unique and easy to read. I found it hard to put down at times.”

4 stars from Deborah Bean on Goodreads:
“Kate L. Mary writes an awesome story and I would happily read anything she writes. This book is a good read that I believe everyone would enjoy.”

4 stars from Erin on Goodreads:
“Wow this book had me on the edge of my seat needing to know what would happen next!”