Friday, October 25, 2013

Ghost Hand (The PSS Chronicles #1) by Ripley Patton ~ Book Review~ First Chapter

Ghost Hand (The PSS Chronicles #1)
by Ripley Patton
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Seventeen-year-old Olivia Black has a rare birth defect known as Psyche Sans Soma, or PSS. Instead of a right hand made of flesh and blood, she was born with a hand made of ethereal energy.

How does Olivia handle being the girl with the ghost hand? Well, she's a little bit morbid and a whole lot snarky. 

Her mother thinks her obsession with death, black clothing, and the local cemetery is a bid for attention. But when Marcus, the new guy in Olivia's calculus class, stares at her like she's a freak, Olivia doesn't like it. And when her hand goes rogue, doing things she never imagined possible, Olivia finds herself running for her life with Marcus from a group of men bent on taking the power of her hand for their own nefarious purposes.

About the Author
Ripley Patton lives in Portland, Oregon with one cat, two teenagers, and a man who wants to live on a boat. She is an award-winning short story writer and author of The PSS Chronicles, a young adult paranormal thriller series.
Ripley doesn't smoke, or drink, or cuss as much as her characters. Her only real vices are writing, eating M&Ms, and watching reality television.

Author Links

Wow, what a great book! I was so hooked from the first few pages, and that doesn’t happen to me very often. See I was supposed to be reading another book for a tour, but had not put it in my Kindle yet, so just randomly picked a book I had on there now, and knew it was one I needed to read soon, and bam, was hooked and could not stop reading till I was done. Lol. Yeah, it’s that good.

I took just a bit to warm up to Olivia, but did pretty soon. I really liked Marcus, and the mystery surrounding him. I think he is a wonderful person to do what he does to help other like himself and Olivia.

This whole idea of the PSS (Psyche Sans Soma) was unique, which of course I never heard of and thought it was very interesting, even if it was a bit hard to believe at first.  But the paranormal lover in me got my head around it pretty quick and went on and really got into this story.
I can’t wait to get my hands on the 2nd book, Ghost Hold. I loved how this book did not end in some climatic cliffhanger, which I hate, so will for sure continue with the series. I now got to where if there is a huge cliffhanger in a series, I generally won’t read the next, as it just makes me so mad I get fed up. I only will continue a series like that after several books in it are out, then I will read them back to back.

So I love the ending, it was just right, pointing to more to come, but not where you want to throw the book against the wall.

I highly recommend this book, especially if you’re looking for something a little different than so many books out there.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars. It’s very well written, and original. I also love that the author lives in my part of the country, I think that's cool. 

I was provided a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.

Here is a taste for you, just Chapter one, get a taste of the story, and possibly get you hooked like I was. Lol.

Chapter One Ghost Hand
Five minutes into my Calc test, I glanced up and caught the new guy staring.
He sat across the aisle from me, his eyes locked on my glowy, see-through right hand and the pencil that hovered between my fingers, never quite touching them.
I slowly set my pencil on my desk.
His eyes tracked my movements, still staring.
I raised my fingers and wiggled them at him in a cheesy little wave. Normally, that was enough to make people turn away and try not to notice my ghost hand. But not this guy. Instead, he looked up, straight into my eyes with this way-too-intense gaze.
God, what was his problem? So I had PSS of the right hand. Psyche Sans Soma was a rare birth defect, but most people had at least heard of it. The internet had loads of stuff about PSS, and Sixty Minutes had done a whole segment on it for Christ’s sake. Besides, hadn’t anyone taught him that staring was rude?
I curled my hand into a fist and flipped him off, glaring at him through my own finger.
He raised his eyebrows and finally looked away, but I didn’t miss the smirk that played across his lips as he did.
Why were the hot ones always such cocky, self-absorbed douche bags?
Unfortunately, there was no denying he was good-looking. He had black hair, brown eyes, dark skin; not a tan but the kind that comes with your DNA. And he definitely had a nice body.
He glanced up from his test, caught me checking him out, and smirked even wider than before.
I felt the blush rise to my face and picked up my pencil, pretending to focus on the test, but after reading the next question four times, I still didn’t know what it said. What kind of a jerk comes into a new town and a new school, and spends the first day of his Calc class trying to make someone else feel like a freak? He was the noob; not me. He was the mid-semester transfer no one knew anything about except that he was from a school up near Chicago. And what was his name anyway? Seemed liked it began with a J. Or maybe an M.
At least he’d finally turned his attention away from me, his pencil scratching out answers the way mine should have been. He didn’t even have to take the test. Since it was his first day, Mr. Giannopoulos had given him permission to opt out, but New Guy had said, “That’s fine. I’ll take it.” Very studious of him. And annoying. Who takes a test when they don’t have to?
“Twenty minutes remaining,” Mr. G droned from his desk. Great. The test was twenty problems long, and I was only on number five.
The clock on the wall behind Mr. G ticked louder and louder as I scribbled down answers.
On question seven, my pencil tip snapped, the tiny mouse turd of lead rolling down the incline of my desk and dropping into my lap. I dug out another pencil from the coffin-shaped leather backpack at my feet, and that’s when I noticed that my ghost hand felt warm, which was weird. PSS wasn’t temperature sensitive. I’d held my hand over an open flame and stuck it in a bucket of ice, both times on a dare, and never felt a thing.
I rolled the new pencil between my warm ghost fingers. Weird or not, I had a test to finish.
“Ten minutes left,” Mr. G said when I’d only just answered question eight.
Passion Wainwright, who sat in front of me, got up from her desk and turned in her test. She was done already? Then again, Passion was the best student in the entire senior class. She pretty much had to be because she was the local pastor’s daughter. Her parents had named her after The Passion of Christ, this Easter play her church did every year in which Passion always played the Virgin Mary. The part actually fit her pretty well, because despite being blonde and skinny and beautiful, guys did not pursue Passion Wainwright. She wore turtlenecks, long-sleeved shirts, and long pants, even when it was warm, as if her wardrobe were some kind of “Do Not Enter” sign. She had a permanent parental waiver against changing for gym class because showing skin and wearing vintage nineties gym shorts was against her religion or something. Most days, I just felt sorry for her. Except when she turned in her Calc test with ten minutes to spare.
“Focus, Olivia,” I told myself, but the heat in my fingers was bordering on uncomfortable. I could always write with my other hand; I was ambidextrous. But if I switched, New Guy would think he’d made me self-conscious with all his staring. No way was I giving him that satisfaction. I gripped the pencil tighter in my hot little hand and soldiered on.
Passion came back, sat down, and pulled out her Bible for a little light reading.
I flicked a glance at New Guy, but he wasn’t there. He was up at Mr. G’s desk turning in his test. I hadn’t even heard him get up. I clutched my pencil and tried to answer question nine. I heard the rustle of New Guy sitting back down and caught a whiff of his cologne or deodorant—the smell of pine overlaid with a faint hint of smoke. It made me think of campfires, which made me think of how much my ghost hand felt like it was roasting over one.
I looked down at it and saw that my fingers were shimmering around the edges. I yanked my hand under the desk, sending my pencil clattering to the floor.
It landed in the aisle and rolled toward New Guy’s desk. He put out a foot, trapping it, and kicked it back my direction, his glance following its progress as it came back to me, bumping up against the thick sole of my boot. His eyes rose up my multi-buckled calf to my thigh, then to my lap, stopping at the spot where I was doing my best to hide my hand under my desk.
I followed his gaze, looking down at the pool of blue PSS energy, shapeless and pulsing, writhing at the end of my wrist stump. I looked back up, locking eyes with him.
His expression was unreadable. He didn’t look surprised, or afraid, or alarmed. He just looked, his eyes fixed on my wacked-out hand, as if curious to see what it would do next.
I gritted my teeth and tried to focus my PSS back into shape. I was not going to be this guy’s personal freak show. I could fix this. It was just mind over matter.
But it didn’t work. If anything, the more I tried, the worse it got, expanding and losing even more definition. The burning sensation grew so intense I squeezed my eyes shut against it. All around me, I could hear the scrape and shuffle of students getting up and handing in their tests. I bent over my desk, trying to block my hand from view. For a moment, I thought about getting up and running out of class, but someone would see my hand for sure if I did that. Maybe if I took a deep breath, and calmed down, it would go back to normal on its own.
As if in response to that thought, the pain suddenly eased off.
I opened my eyes.
New Guy was leaning over the edge of his desk, and there seemed to be something wrong with his neck. He kept jerking his head toward Passion. What did he want? An introduction to Virgin Mary the hotty? If so, his timing was utter crap.
“Leave me alone,” I mouthed past clenched lips.
He shook his head and gave an exaggerated nod toward Passion again, rolling his eyes in her direction.
This time, I turned and looked.
Something was crawling up Passion’s back.
Not just one something. Five somethings. Five elongated, wisp-thin tendrils, winding their way up Passion’s chair, climbing her back, fluttering at the strands of hair that escaped from her ponytail, making a moving, barely-perceptible pattern of bluish light on the back of her white turtleneck so faint I could almost convince myself it was an optical illusion.
But it wasn’t.
It was my hand, my five fingers stretching impossibly and rising from under the front of my desk, groping the back of Passion Wainwright.
I yanked my wrist in toward my body, but it made no difference. I couldn’t feel my hand, couldn’t control those fingers or call them back.
Passion, intent on her Bible reading, shivered as if she felt a draft and absently brushed an undulating tendril away from her neck.
The thickest finger, the one in the middle, rose up along her spine, stopping at a spot right between her shoulder blades. It held level for a moment, weaving back and forth like some ghostly snake dancing to the tune of an invisible flute. Then it dipped forward, slipping silently through the thin cotton fabric of Passion’s shirt and straight into her back.
She didn’t make a sound as she went limp, her torso gently slanting toward her desk; the tendril of PSS embedded in her back the only thing holding her up.
I didn’t make a sound either, didn’t move, didn’t dare. What if moving made it worse? Oh my God, a voice yammered in my head, you think this could get worse?
I could feel New Guy’s eyes boring into the side of my head. Obviously, he could see my PSS skewering Passion. Why didn’t he jump up and scream and point? How could he just be sitting there so calmly?
I had to get away. From Passion. From everyone. But if I bolted, would my PSS come with me or stretch between my wrist and Passion like some horrible, incriminating rubber band? What would that do to my hand? What would it do to Passion?
I had no idea.
And before I could figure it out, the bell rang.

Check out below for info on book 2, Ghost Hold and Book 3 Ghost Heart

Ghost Hold (The PSS Chronicles #2)
By Ripley Patton
Genre: Paranormal Thriller
Age category: Young Adult

My Review

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Published September 2013 by Ripley Patton
Series The PSS Chronicles #2

Olivia Black is back.

Only this time she's not the one in need of rescue.

Samantha James, rich, popular, and an award-winning composer at age seventeen, is the next target on the CAMFers' list. In order to convince Samantha to come with them, Olivia and Passion must pose as cousins, blend into the most affluent high school in Indianapolis, and infiltrate a mysterious cult known as The Hold.

Olivia doesn't expect it to be easy, even with the PSS guys backing them up. But what she discovers over the course of the mission will call into question everything she ever believed about herself, her family, and especially about Marcus, the guy she is undoubtedly falling in love with.

Ghost Heart (The PSS Chronicles #3)
By Ripley Patton
Genre: Paranormal Thriller
Age category: Young Adult
Release Date: October 14, 2014

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In the aftermath of a brutal tragedy, Jason and Passion are on the run. Marcus is lost beyond reach, and The Hold is in shambles. If that weren't enough, Olivia Black has been taken by the CAMFers to be used as Dr. Fineman's personal lab rat in his merciless quest to uncover the mysteries of Psyche Sans Soma once and for all. But only if he can break her.

They are scattered.
They are devastated.
They are ruined.

Their only hope is Olivia's stubborn determination to thwart her captors and unlock the secrets of her ghost hand before Dr. Fineman can. Will she finally find the strength within herself to embrace the full power of her PSS?

And will it even matter if Marcus has already betrayed her?

Book One Ghost Hand, is Free:
You can buy Ghost Hold here:
Ghost Heart Buy Links


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