Exciting times on the site today! We’ve got an exclusive excerpt from Melissa Eastlake’s upcoming m/m YA Rapunzel retelling, The Uncrossing, which releases from Entangled Teen on October 2nd! Check this out:
Luke can uncross almost any curse—they unravel themselves for him like no one else. So working for the Kovrovs, one of the families controlling all the magic in New York, is exciting and dangerous, especially when he encounters the first curse he can’t break. And it involves Jeremy, the beloved, sheltered prince of the Kovrov family—the one boy he absolutely shouldn’t be falling for.
Jeremy’s been in love with cocky, talented Luke since they were kids. But from their first kiss, something’s missing. Jeremy’s family keeps generations of deadly secrets, forcing him to choose between love and loyalty. As Luke fights to break the curse, a magical, citywide war starts crackling, and it’s tied to Jeremy.
This might be the one curse Luke can’t uncross. If true love’s kiss fails, what’s left for him and Jeremy?
And now, the excerpt!
Finally, feeling like a human tornado, he pulled out his phone and texted Jeremy: What a day
The reply took no time at all. Tired of talking about it. Tell me another joke?
He replied with the dumbest thing he could think of: Where did the general put his armies?
He waited, looking out the window at the piles of ash they’d left in the alley. The bird beat dumbly against the wall near Luke’s arm—he couldn’t control it, but it stayed close to him anyway.
The phone rang.
Luke thought, Fuck. He answered. “Are you sure you’re ready for this?” He waited for Jeremy to say no. Just once, for someone else to show some sense.
“Where?” There was already laughter in Jeremy’s voice.
Luke touched the window. In the room’s weak air conditioning, the glass was warm. “In his sleevies.”
Jeremy laughed and groaned at once. “Oh, no.”
Oh, no. “Oh, yes.”
“Nope. No, no, nope.”
Stop it right now. “Yes. Say it. Say, ‘Oh, yes.’”
Jeremy was quiet for a long time. Luke opened his hand against the glass. Good, he thought. Hang up on me.
“Oh.” Jeremy paused. “Yes.”
Luke squeezed his eyes shut. “I changed my mind. Don’t ever say that to me again.”
“Stop it right now. You will hang up your phone if you know what’s good for you, Kovrov.”
Jeremy didn’t hang up. “Can you not call me that?”
Luke put his forehead against the back of his hand on the window. There were lots of things he could have said, but the one he picked was, “Jeremy.”
Jeremy’s breath caught, a click through the phone. “You should hang up on me. I’m the one who, you know. All this. My family. Everything.”
“I don’t think I’m going to do that.” It had been a long day, but Luke hadn’t forgotten the beginning of it: that smile in the car. He’d known what he’d wanted before his vision and the attack, and he knew what he wanted now. “I think I’m going to kiss you.”
Jeremy was quiet. Luke could see him: gaze sliding everywhere, stretching his fingers out to tap his palm against whatever was near. His bed. Luke rolled his face up, putting his lips on the back of his hand.
“Yes,” Jeremy said.
Melissa Eastlake’s debut novel, The Uncrossing, is coming in 2017 from Entangled Teen. She is a 2017 Lambda Literary Fellow and lives in Athens, Georgia with her partner and their dogs.
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