Happy Thursday and welcome to my stop on the Sparrow blog tour!! Read on for an excerpt, plus find out more about the book and author, follow along with the rest of the tour and enter a giveaway for a print copy of Sparrow!!
Sparrow by Mary Cecilia Jackson
Published by Tor Teen on March 17, 2020
Genres: YA, Contemporary
There are two kinds of people on the planet. Hunters and prey. I thought I would be safe after my mother died. I thought I could stop searching for new places to hide. But you can’t escape what you are, what you’ve always been. My name is Savannah Darcy Rose. And I am still prey.
Though Savannah Rose―Sparrow to her friends and family―is a gifted ballerina, her real talent is keeping secrets. Schooled in silence by her long-dead mother, Sparrow has always believed that her lifelong creed―“I’m not the kind of girl who tells”―will make her just like everyone else: Normal. Happy. Safe. But in the aftermath of a brutal assault by her seemingly perfect boyfriend Tristan, Sparrow must finally find the courage to confront the ghosts of her past, or lose herself forever….
Juggling books, bag, and backpack, I burst through the massive front doors and breathed the cold winter air into my lungs.
The student parking lot is practically deserted, which would be a little weird for a Thursday, except it’s been a tough winter. After the last bell, people scurry home, like rabbits to their burrows. A few cars are left, probably yearbook kids, or people staying late for tutoring. My car is all by itself, in the corner under a huge maple tree, now bare of leaves, empty branches silhouetted against the leaden sky. Some people hate winter in Virginia, but I like how spare it is, cold and clean and uncluttered. I raise my face to the sky. There’s snow on the wind.
A car squeals to a stop inches from my left hip. I fall to my knees, dropping everything, spilling notebooks, pens, and all my ballet stuff across the asphalt. I’m so terrified I can’t even breathe. I count to nine in my head, trying to slow the panic. When my hands stop shaking and I can breathe again, I look up and see the grille of a huge black Mustang. I smell exhaust, feel the relentless percussion of heavy metal.
I know this car.
Tristan King, white in tooth, blond in hair, rich in parents. Hollins Creek High School’s highest deity, star of the track team, lusted after by anyone with a pulse. Delaney and I have been swooning over him since middle school.
“Oh my God, did I hit you? Are you hurt?” He and all his gorgeousness come flying out of the car, wearing the dark gray suit and crimson tie all the athletes had to wear for the awards assembly this morning. He kneels down to help me collect my things.
“No, no, I’m fine,” I manage to croak. “I’ve got this, really. It’s okay.”
“I am so, so sorry! Oh no! Your knees are bleeding!”
“Really, it’s nothing, honestly.”
I hold my hands out to keep him away. “They don’t even hurt.” I’ve torn huge, gaping holes in the knees of my black tights, and the skin underneath is scraped and raw. Blood trickles slowly from the cuts and soaks into the ragged edges.
My pointe shoes, tied into their nerdy mesh bag, are under his car, along with my books and notebooks. But all the truly awful stuff—deodorant, tampons, panty liners, body spray, Dr. Scholl’s blister pads and foot powder, even the dryer sheets I stuff into my dance bag so it won’t reek of sweat and BO—is right out there in the pale winter sunlight. All the embarrassing, disgusting detritus of my life. My own personal Museum of Mortification.
I pray for a sudden sinkhole to swallow me whole, a bolt of lightning to fry me to ash, an alien abduction. I’m straight up dying of embarrassment. Dying. Like I-can’t-breathe-and-my- heart-hurts dying.
Tristan looks at my knees and says, “Hang on a second. I’ll be right back, okay? Don’t go anywhere.”
Copyright © 2020 by Mary Cecilia Jackson
Are you adding this book to your #TBR? It’s been on mine for months, and I’m so excited to read it! Let me know if you’re adding it in the comments and have a splendiferous day!