• Splintered - AG HowardSplintered
  • A Matter of Fate - Heather Lyons
  •  inescapable - amy a bartol
  •  graceling - kristin cashore
  •  someone to love - addison moore
  •  breaking beautiful - jennifer shaw wolf
  •  the perfect game - j sterling
  •  the edge of never - ja redmerski
  •  independence - shelly crane

Thursday, November 8, 2012

{Spotlight, Excerpt & Giveaway} Defy the Stars by Stephanie Parent

Defy the Stars
by Stephanie Parent
Self Published
Available as of July 30, 2012

Julia Cape: A dedicated classical piano student just trying to get through her last semester of high school while waiting to hear from music conservatories.

Reed MacAllister: A slacker more likely to be found by the stoners’ tree than in class.

Julia and Reed might have graduated high school without ever speaking to each other…until, during a class discussion of Romeo and Juliet, Julia scoffs at the play’s theme of love at first sight, and Reed responds by arguing that feelings don’t always have to make sense. Julia tries to shake off Reed’s comment and forget about this boy who hangs with the stoner crowd—and who happens to have breathtaking blue eyes—but fate seems to bring the two together again and again. After they share an impulsive, passionate kiss, neither one can deny the chemistry between them. Yet as Julia gets closer to Reed, she also finds herself drawn into his dark world of drugs and violence. Then a horrific tragedy forces Julia’s and Reed’s families even farther apart…and Julia must decide whether she’s willing to give up everything for love.

Defy the Stars is written in an edgy free-verse style that will appeal to fans of Ellen Hopkins and Lisa Schroeder; however, the writing is accessible enough to speak to non-verse fans as well. The novel’s combination of steamy romance and raw emotion will appeal to fans of Gayle Forman, Simone Elkeles, Jennifer Echols, and Tammara Webber. With a story, language and form that both pay homage to and subvert Shakespeare’s play, Defy the Stars is much more than just another Romeo and Juliet story.

About the Author:
Stephanie Parent is a YA author repped by Brenda Bowen of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. She is a graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC and attended the Baltimore School for the Arts as a piano major.

Website | Goodreads


Reed pulls me down the alley, away from the
hotel, till we land in a tight space between two
neighboring buildings. The others aren’t so quick,
or lucky, and a moment later I hear my father

“What the hell are you hoodlums
doing here?”

(Hoodlums. Do I know my dad or what?)

He stops, apparently sniffing,
since he quickly adds,

“Are you all high? Get out of here,
or I’ll call…”

Just then, a shaft of moonlight falls on Reed’s
face, and my father’s voice tumbles away to

His railing’s just a buzz of white
noise now, senseless as the cold wind
rolling through the night.

I can’t look away from Reed’s eyes.

Yes, they’re blue, like Perry’s, but
as different from his as…well, as
night from day.

Perry’s are too bright, offensive,
garish, like the sky at high noon.
And when he’s looking at you, there’s
that sense he just wants something.

But Reed? Reed’s eyes are full of
clouds, of smoke, and the hint of
something else beneath them, too fragile
for the light.

I could dive in and find it.

But I’m staring, so I tear my gaze away,

“Julia?” he whispers.
“Are you okay?
Have you been crying?”

So maybe he was staring too.

“Oh, no…I mean, maybe a little.
But I’m okay now.”

“What happened?”

“Just, um, I was here
with Perry, and…
He got kind of grabby.”

Why am I telling him this?
I clamp my mouth shut and
shiver. My anger has seeped
away into the night, and with it,
the layer of tension that buffered
me from the cold.

“He didn’t hurt you, did he?” Reed

—and it surprises me.
I shiver harder.

“No, no—I’m fine.”

Then I guess he notices
my shaking arms, ’cause he says,

“You must be freezing!”

And before I can protest, his
leather jacket is sheltering me.

Beneath it, he wears only a T-shirt,
his bare arms lean but sinewy,
just like in my—
—Stop it!

I try to shake myself sane again,
tune back in to the world around me.
I realize it’s dead


“Guess my dad scared your
friends away.” I still whisper,
for some reason.

“Don’t worry.” Reed grins.
“They can take care of

And apparently, I’m not so successful
at holding on to sanity, because I look
at his lips and think:

Maybe fate gave me a second

first chance tonight.

I don’t believe in fate,
or in acting on impulse,
but my body doesn’t seem to care
as it draws me closer to Reed
till our lips are

He stiffens for a moment,
his lips slack beneath mine,
and I know I’ve just made
a terrible mistake…

Then his arms are around me,
pulling me closer, his lips opening,
demanding, and there’s no question

He’s kissing me.

And it’s nothing—nothing—
nothing like the disaster earlier

This is

warmth all around me.
a new world opening.
two stars colliding.
And I think
I’m drowning.

1st prize: $30 gift card from Amazon and a e-book copy of Defy the Stars.
2nd place: 4 e-book copies of Defy the Stars.
Additional Prize: A query letter critique by Stephanie Parent.
All giveaways are open internationally!

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You can follow the rest of the tour here.

1 comment:

Elisabeth said...

Oh, I love that excerpt!

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