Excerpt & Giveaway: Until You Find Me by Amber Hart
Until You Find Me
Until You Find Me # 1
By: Amber Hart
Releasing November 11th, 2014
Amber Hart pushes contemporary romance to its wildest limits in this heart-pounding novel, the story of a girl who travels to Africa to protect the legacy of one man . . . and stays for the love of another.
Raven Moore, a twenty-year-old college student from Michigan, feels out of place in the beautiful, treacherous jungles of Cameroon, staying in the habitat where her father gave his life to help protect endangered gorillas. He left home years ago; now Raven refuses to return home until she unravels the truth about his last days.
Raven certainly doesn’t count on crossing paths with a handsome young hunter—especially one as charismatic and intense as Jospin Tondjii. Instantly, she’s hooked. But Jospin is hiding a dark truth: He is the heir to a powerful poaching empire, part of a ruthless black market that is responsible for the dwindling gorilla population.
Their fathers may have been enemies, but Raven and Jospin forge a bond that goes beyond blood, a relationship that is tested as Raven draws closer to the source of her father’s death. Can she and Jospin bear the weight of the secrets of the wild—and the secrets of their pasts? Or will the rain forest destroy them both?
Advance praise for Until You Find Me
“If you think the jungle is hot and dangerous, wait until you meet Jospin. He and Raven turn up the heat to scorching and burn the jungle down!”—Lisa Desrochers, USA Today bestselling author of A Little Too Far
“A beautiful, unconventional story that takes you to the jungles of Africa to fall in love, Until You Find Me contains the perfect balance of angst, thrills, and page-turning appeal.”—K.A. Tucker, USA Today bestselling author of Ten Tiny Breaths
“Wonderfully unique and utterly unputdownable, Until You Find Me is a breath of fresh air. Each page is sexier than the one before.”—Lauren Layne, author of Isn’t She Lovely
I race headfirst into the jungle, machete out, decapitating shrubs and dismembering tree limbs in my path.
This one is gurgled.
I run faster. As fast as I can.
It’s over. Before it began, really.
I find them in a heartbeat, though I remain in the shadows, camouflaged behind a tree with bark so dark that it nearly matches the ebony of my skin. My eyes jump to the gorilla first. He is sleeping, the right side of his face pressed against brown earth, a tranquilizer dart protruding from his back.
I recognize the three habitat workers standing nearby but not the girl who is slumped on the forest floor.
Her left arm hangs limply—the shoulder is clearly dislocated—and the skin on her arm is shredded. One of the workers, the man, picks her up carefully. Her head lolls at an awkward angle; she’s clearly unconscious. Her blood drips continuously, leaving a velvety trail on damp soil. The man cradles her, moving swiftly but carefully, trying not to jostle her maimed body. His two companions are speaking somewhat frantically, but I understand every word they say, even though English is not my first language.
“Must get her to the doctor ASAP.”
“Losing too much blood.”
“Broken, it seems.”
“Need proper assessment.”
“Lucky we came in time.”
“What the hell is she doing way out here?”
Yes. What the hell is she doing way out here?
She is delicate-looking. Small features. Tiny frame. Mouth parted slightly. Every part of her seems soaked with blood.
One of the women speaks into a radio. A male answers. Says that if he runs, he can be there in ten minutes to see that the gorilla is safe. She agrees to wait until he arrives. They are smart not to leave the silverback alone. I breathe slowly, determined to stay hidden. I watch. Wait. Commit her face to memory. Should she survive her injuries, I need to recognize her.
To warn her.
She shouldn’t be in this part of the jungle. Not now. Not ever.
Perhaps the gorilla warned her enough.
What was the trigger?
I take inventory. The girl possesses no visible weapons. There were no young gorillas involved, unless they ran off when the workers arrived—but that isn’t typical behavior. Normally the young stay by the adult’s side. Conscious or not. And the girl didn’t seem to have provoked it with a loud sound—I would have heard that. But there is always a trigger. I’m missing something.
Amber Hart is the author of Before You and Until You Find Me. She grew up in Orlando, Florida, and Atlanta, Georgia, and now resides on the Florida coastline with her family. When not reading, she can be found writing, daydreaming, or dipping her toes in the sand.