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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Book Blitz: Excerpt and Giveaway! The Ghost of You by Amanda Burckhard

Release Date: 02/24/15
Swoon Romance

Emmy has everything she’s ever wanted: a hot boyfriend she adores, great friends, a promising future, and even a well-connected family. But one night rips it all away.

A car accident shatters her world, claiming the lives of her twin brother and her best friend. In the wake of the accident, her friends drift away, her family falls apart, and her boyfriend cheats.

The grief is more than she can handle, so she finds escape at the bottom of a bottle of painkillers. Taking the pills makes her brother alive again, if only in her head. Seeing and talking to her brother as if he were still alive is the only thing that keeps her going. Until Logan King moves to town.

Logan sees past the mask of pristine popularity she wears in public and he’s the only one who can tell she hasn’t moved on. His uncanny ability to read her forces her to open up and she starts to fall for him, no matter how unwilling she is to admit it. But Emmy isn’t the only one keeping secrets and when a close brush with death sparks events that bring everything to light, Emmy will have to decide what’s more important: learning how to forgive and move on, or holding onto the pills and the ghost of her past.


The back of my eyes pulsed in time with the pounding in my head. My dark sunglasses didn’t block out enough of the light to stop it from aggravating my hangover. At least the nausea from earlier had passed. I groaned, turning my head toward Skye in the driver’s seat. She fared a little better than me, having had a restful night’s sleep. Nightmares had plagued my dreams all night. I blamed the beer. 

We rounded the corner to my street and Skye cocked her head at me. “I thought you said your mom would be at work?” 

I stared at the white Volvo in the driveway next to my red Mini Cooper. “She’s supposed to be.” Her shift at the hospital started an hour ago. “You think I’m busted?” Cherry on top of my freaking sundae. 

Skye pointed to a Sheriff’s patrol car a little ways down the street. “I don’t know, but that’s not a good sign.” 

I threw my head back against the headrest. “Shit! If Uncle Jim’s here I’m toast!” He’d take one look at me and know exactly what I spent my night doing. 

She chuckled in a pitying, sarcastic way. “Good luck with that. So I’m guessing that movie later is a no if you and Derek are grounded.” She looked around for my brother’s canary yellow Mustang. “Where is Derek? He usually beats you home.” 

Maybe Uncle Jim busted the party after I left. Maybe he found Derek there and he ratted meout. 

Jerk. So why wasn’t his car in the driveway? “Who knows?” 

“Text me if they don’t take your phone away,” she shouted as I got out of the car.

 She pulled out of the driveway and down the street. I took my sweet time getting to the door. I was most likely going to be grounded for the next month, so might as well enjoy my last few seconds of freedom. Hopefully it wouldn’t last more than a month or I’d miss Homecoming week. Aw, man, and the opening football game against our rivals. At least I’d still have softball practice. 

When I reached the door, I ran my hands through my disheveled hair in a last ditch effort to conceal my previous night’s activities. I walked in, keeping the sunglasses on to cover my puffy eyes. 

Uncle Jim’s voice echoed into the entry. “Emmy?” 

There was no point trying to quietly shut the door behind me. Everyone sat in the living room just past the entryway. I couldn’t sneak past them to the stairs without being seen if my life depended on it. Taking one last breath to prepare myself for the upcoming punishment, I set my bag down and walked to the living room. What I found was not the stern and disappointed looks 

I expected. 

 Mom sat on the edge of the couch. Her blotchy face and swollen eyes told me she had been crying. Hard. Dad sat next to her with his arm around her, staring out the window with a dazed expression. My uncle stood in his Sheriff uniform leaning against the mantle on the wall and my cousin, Brayden, sat in the loveseat with his head in his hands, his eyes fixed on the beige carpeting. 

What was Brayden doing here? He was supposed to be taking the SAT’s. He was a senior now and he already scored poorly twice. Today’s test was the last one he could take before he applied to college. He wouldn’t miss it. They couldn’t be over already. 

I froze at the edge of the living room and slowly pulled off my sunglasses, a choking feeling constricting my lungs like a python. “What’s going on?” 

No one spoke. 

All eyes averted from mine. 

Finally, my uncle cleared his throat. “Why don’t you take a seat?” His sunken face and steady tone felt like a rock falling into my stomach. 

I swallowed the panic rising in my throat. “Why do I have to sit?” 

Brayden took a deep breath and walked over to me. “Come on,” he said and led me to the loveseat to sit next to him. The room was dead quiet as I studied everyone’s grave faces. 

Something tickled the back of my brain. It tried to tell me what I already knew. I pushed it away, refusing to believe my paranoia. 

“You guys are freaking me out!” I choked on the words. My breathing became shallow and forced. 

Brayden put his hand on my arm. 

Tears welled up in my eyes, stinging like tiny nettles. I turned to Brayden. “Where’s Derek?” 

 He didn’t answer, but the look in his eyes spoke volumes. 

The tears spilled over my eyes and tremors racked my body. I turned my hysteria onto my parents. “Where is he!” 

The question sent my mother into a fit of sobs. 

Terror wrapped its bony fingers around my heart and squeezed, expelling the air from my lungs. 

Please, God. Don’t say it. Nonono. This wasn’t happening. Brayden looked me straight in the 

eye, a constellation of tears glistening on his lashes. 

“Derek was in an accident.


Amanda Burckhard grew up exploring bat caves and hunting for dinosaur bones in the Black Hills of South Dakota. When she wasn’t crossing paths with mountain lions, she was making up stories and devouring books at the library. Although, she still does that.

Amanda loves to travel and cross out things on her adrenaline packed bucket list. Some of the things she's been able to cross out include see an active volcano erupt, ride a gondola in Venice, and pet a tiger.

She currently lives in North Sioux City, South Dakota and works as a microbiologist by day. Some of her obsessions include comic book movies, hot chocolate, sushi, sunshine, and Doctor Who.



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