Hi everyone! Welcome to my stop for the Melancholy book tour. Some of you may have read my review for the first episode of the first book, Fury. Fury was released in an episodic format throughout March 2014, which I thought was an awesome way to slowly tease the readers. It felt like waiting for the next chapter of your favourite self-published story to be written.
Thanks to Momentum, I have the pleasure of publishing an excerpt from Melancholy today as a part of my stop on the blog tour. I hope you enjoy it!
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Author: Charlotte McConaghy
Publication Date: 9th April 2015 by Momentum Books
Synopsis: “Here in the west they know a lot about hope. They know how to ration it just as they do with food and water.
Josephine is at last free of the blood moon. But in a desperate rush to find help for a comatose Luke, she discovers the strange and dangerous world of the resistance, and it is unlike any world Josi has known.
In the west they believe in fury – they cultivate and encourage it. The unruly people of the resistance know that to survive means to fight. But can they fight the inevitable cure for sadness that rushes steadily closer?
In the action-packed sequel to Fury, everything Josi believes about herself will be challenged. Haunted by atrocities and betrayals, she must find the strength to trust again, and decide how far she is willing to go to fight the inevitable.
At times both brutal and sweet, Melancholy is the story of second chances and finding love in a ruined world.”
Sometimes when I sit here I feel like all the heat in the whole world has come to keep me company, cocooning the two of us in an inferno. It’s so hot out here it makes it hard to breathe.
I imagine words, thousands of them, forming conversations and sentences we never said when you were awake. I imagine the things I will tell you when you open your eyes, if you ever do. I imagine a world of truth that never existed for us in the beginning.
They tell me that it’s unlikely. That I shouldn’t hope. Here in the west they know a lot about hope. They know how to ration it just as they do with food and water. They dole out hope in tiny pieces, clutching it in their hard, calloused hands, spreading it thin so that it lasts and lasts until its very edges, until they have wrung it dry. They recognize when it is real and when it is false. They know that to hope can mean to survive, but so too can it destroy you.
They tell me, every morning, that today will be your last day. That today I should say my goodbyes, harden my heart, let you go. They have dispensed with any remnants of hope–there is none left for this, for us. You have been asleep for too long, they tell me. I must let you go.
They know a lot out here. They understand a lot.
But they do not understand you, Luke Townsend.
And they do not understand me.
September 18th, 2065
Every fiber in my body has reached a state beyond exhaustion, but I can’t let myself fall asleep. Instead I sit slouched in this sticky leather seat, watching the blackness rush past the window, rocked into a dull state of trance by the noisy hum of the train.
Luke’s head lies in my lap, the rest of his big body draped over the seat next to me. There’s no blood—he looks to be in perfect shape, and he’s breathing normally. I don’t really understand how a body could just shut down into this kind of sleep. With my finger I trace his lip carefully, wanting to memorize its shape.
I jerk my finger away and look up at the big blue eyes, so blue they’re almost violet, somehow. The bolt through her nose glints, as does the sheen of her skull under the razor-short hair. Her name is Pace and she stalks this train night and day. She likes to swear and laugh in a hysterical, crazy way.
I think I like her.
Her eyebrows arch. “All you do is stare at him. Or touch him. Real slow like that. Does he know who you are? Or are you, like, his stalker?”
This makes me smile. “He’s mine.”
She blinks once, then pushes off the seat in front of me and strides away.
Next to jog down the aisle is Hal, the big, brutish-looking one with the white mohawk and tattoos over his arms. As he passes he winks at me and keeps going. It’s their exercise, apparently. And it makes me tired just watching them. I don’t want to think about why they need to be so fit or strong.
My eyes shift to the black of the tunnel outside. It’s disorienting being underground so long, moving so fast but unable to judge how far we’ve come. I have no idea where we’re headed because Pace won’t tell me. I don’t trust them, but I believe that all three know Luke well.
“He’s real calm and contained,” she told me last night when they carried him through the bush. “But, like, all trembly under the surface.”
“That’s his wild,” Hal had chipped in. “His animal.”
And then the little one, whose name is Will, added definitively, “He’s sweet like honey to catch the flies.”
Yep. They had Luke pegged.
Now, startling me, Will’s head pops down from above—outside the train. He grins, swinging down to pry open the window and clambering inside like a little monkey.
“What are you doing?” I exclaim as he shuts it again, blocking out the loud rush of sound. “That’s dangerous.”
Will laughs, his smile wide and full of white teeth. We look surreptitiously at each other, trying to figure each other out. He can’t be more than fourteen or fifteen; I think Pace is a little older.
“You’re tired,” he observes eventually.
“How far are we going?” Having had no luck with Pace, I quiz him instead.
“What’s that in miles?”
“Dunno. Pretty far though.”
“And what’s at the end of pretty far?”
I already know this. It does nothing to help the nerves under my skin. “Do you have doctors there?”
“How does this train run?” Now that I have someone sitting still long enough to answer questions, I’m going to take advantage of it.
“Ask Hal. He’s the engineer.”
“Hal’s an engineer? He’s a child.”
“And where did he get an engineering degree before nineteen?”
Will stares at me, his amusement patent. “You really are from the city, aren’t ya? Jeez.”
I don’t know what he means, so I shrug.
Will’s eyes drop to Luke and he shakes his head. “Can’t think of much that’d knock that one out. What happened to him?”
I look at Luke’s face. “I happened to him.”
Eventually I sleep. I’m too sore and woozy not to. My dreams are haunted. Blood and teeth and poles in spines. I wake with tears on my cheeks and, seeing Hal sitting opposite, I brush them quickly away.
“You’ll be okay in the west,” he says with complete confidence.
“What’s in the west?”
“We will be in about twenty minutes. I came to help you get your boy up.”
In the end it takes Hal, Pace and Will to lift Luke, big as he is. I’m useless, trembling with pain and fatigue, so I follow at a stumble. The train slows as if of its own accord, but doesn’t stop, so we have to sort of hop out onto a weird, crumbling set of stone steps as it speeds off. The steps take us up at an angle, through rock and earth, until we reach a wooden trapdoor and emerge into boiling hot sunlight.
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So what did you think guys? Let me know below!
Follow the rest of the BLOG TOUR for more Melancholy goodies from the 6 – 23 April!