EXCERPT: As Dust Dances By Samantha Young
Once upon a time Skylar Finch was the lead singer of a hugely successful American pop-rock band. But fame made her miserable. When years of living a lie suddenly ended in tragedy, Skylar fell off the map.
Eighteen months later she’s sleeping in a tent in a cemetery in Glasgow, making just enough money to eat by busking on the streets. She manages to avoid recognition, but not the attention of one of Glasgow’s ambitious A&R executives.
Killian O’Dea works at Skyscraper Records, Scotland’s most successful record label. Raised by his uncle and owner of the label, Killian’s upbringing would have been devoid of affection entirely if it wasn’t for his loving sister. Killian is unflinchingly determined to bring the label more success than ever, and the young homeless woman who busks on Buchanan Street is going to help him do that. Her music speaks to him in a way he refuses to over-analyze. All he knows is that if it can touch his dark soul, it’ll set everyone else’s alight.
Skylar makes it clear that she doesn’t want to sign with him. But when she experiences the dangerous reality of a woman sleeping rough, Skylar has no one else but Killian to turn to. An undeniable connection forms between them. But Skylar doesn’t want the career Killian is trying to forge for her, and when her past comes back to haunt her Killian will be faced with a decision that could ruin him. He must either free Skylar from his selfish machinations and destroy everything he’s ever worked for, or lose a woman who has come to mean more to him than he ever thought possible…
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“The omelet is good,” I offered reluctantly when the silence felt too heavy.
But it was followed by more silence, the only sounds between us that of cutlery on plates and the soft sipping sounds of us drinking. I could barely finish the omelet, not used to eating something so substantial in the morning. O’Dea’s brows pinched together as he took my plate, but he didn’t say anything.
“I need a shower.”
“There’s an en suite in the bedroom. Fresh towels, soap, shampoo and conditioner in there too.” He reached into the carrier bag on the counter and pulled out a brand-new electric toothbrush and tube of toothpaste. He offered them and feeling a little unbalanced by the gesture, I took them. “There’s a hair dryer in the bathroom as well. Your backpack is in the bedroom.”
I nodded, not quite able to thank him again after the last attempt.
“I’ll be out here when you’re done. We’ll get straight to the audition.”
And suddenly I didn’t care about thanking him. Throwing him a look of disgust, I disappeared into the bedroom and slammed the door behind me.
Unfortunately, a few minutes later, I had to come out of the room again. I found him sitting on the couch, drinking coffee, and scrolling through something on his phone. O’Dea looked up at me with an eyebrow quirk. I hated that eyebrow quirk.
I lifted my wrist with the cast. “I need something to cover this.”
Without saying a word, he got up, put his coffee and phone down on the island, and rummaged through one of the large drawers beside the range. He turned around with cling-film in his hands and gestured me to come to him with an odious curl of his finger. Internally huffing, I strode over to him and held out my wrist.
“This place is pretty well stocked,” I grumbled.
“We like to make sure every need is catered to.”
Then O’Dea triple-wrapped my cast with such gentleness, it stunned me silent.
I was still standing holding out my arm while he put the cling-film away. I frowned at his back, puzzled by his complexity. That is until he turned around and gave me that eyebrow again.
Just like that I was back to being annoyed and desperate to get out of his company.
My building resentment toward him only increased the moment I saw my reflection in the bathroom mirror.
How the hell could he look at me like this and demand that I audition?
Bluish bruising covered my puffed-up, swollen eye and upper cheek. My lower lip was swollen on one side where it had split. And underneath the injuries, my cheekbones cut sharply against my pale skin. The shoulders of my T-shirt hung down on my arms because my shoulders were too small for it.
I looked like a battered waif.
Skylar Finch was no more.
Meet The Author: Samantha Young
Samantha Young has sold over a million copies of her novels. She is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of adult contemporary romances, including the On Dublin Street series and Hero, as well as the New Adult duology Into the Deep and Out of the Shallows. The One Real Thing, the first book in her new Hart’s Boardwalk series, will be published by Berkley in September 2016. Before turning to contemporary fiction, she wrote several young adult paranormal and fantasy series, including the amazon bestselling Tale of Lunarmorte trilogy.
Samantha has been nominated for the Goodreads Choice Award 2012 for Best Author and Best Romance for On Dublin Street, Best Romance 2014 for Before Jamaica Lane, and Best Romance 2015 for Hero. On Dublin Street a #1 bestseller in Germany was the Bronze Award Winner in the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2013, Before Jamaica Lane the Gold Medal Winner for the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2014 and Echoes of Scotland Street the Bronze Medal Winner for the LeserPreis German Readers Choice Awards for Best Romance 2015.
Samantha is currently published in 30 countries and is an international bestselling author.