Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Blog Tour: Excerpt + Giveaway: The Storm by Virginia Bergin

Welcome to my stop in THE STORM by

The Storm #2

Virginia Bergin
(The Storm #2)
Genres: YA, Post-Apocalyptic
Published: October 6th, 2015

"I'll tell you a weird thing about apocalypses - a thing I didn't even know until I was in one: they seem pretty bad, don't they? Well, take it from me: they can always get worse."Three months after the killer rain first fell, Ruby is beginning to realise her father might be dead . . . and that she cannot survive alone. When a chance encounter lands her back in the army camp, Ruby thinks she is safe - at a price. Being forced to live with Darius Spratt is bad enough, but if Ruby wants to stay she must keep her eyes - and her mouth - shut. It's not going to happen. When she realizes what is going on - the army is trying to find a cure by experimenting on human subjects - Ruby flips out . . . and makes an even more shocking discovery: she's not useless at all. The Storm begins . . .

~~~ Chapter 5 of The Storm ~~~

Every single fabulous person in that place was in a costume. Every kind of beautiful and fantastic creature was there, from masked and gowned ladies to aliens from outer space to a very convincing beady-­eyed fox in a hunter’s jacket, and a gold-­painted guy who actually appeared to be naked. Hard to tell with everyone dressed up, but it seemed like there might have been a lot of new people because I didn’t seem to recognize anyone much…apart from the one who had to be as old as my grandma: Granny Lycra—­last seen wearing a leopard-­print catsuit and now rocking a white meringue of a wedding dress.

Sask and I, we looked at each other, eyes wide… If there’s one thing a Dartbridge girl loves, even during an apocalypse—­maybe especially during an apocalypse—­it’s a kicking, crazy party. (Even—­and also maybe especially—­when that Dartbridge girl has been scared stupid and scraped rock-­bottom low and has no clue about what kind of a future there might be.) (Bring it on! If I thought anything, that’s what I thought: Bring it on!)

In the blockbuster film of my blockbuster story, the next thing that happens will be a tzzzzzzzzzp! as the DJ rips the needle off the vinyl and the whole room goes silent.

What really happened was the music got turned down a little, and out of the crowd, the only other person (apart from us) who wasn’t dressed up approached: Xar.

I’d met him before, what seemed like years ago but was only a few months: a six-­foot-­something, impressively gorgeous, blond, dread-­head, tree-­hugging crustie—­only not really a crustie. More manicured. More deliberate. More composed. Naked from the jeans up, his chest shone with dance sweat. And I got that impression again, the one I’d first had, that he was somehow their king, because everyone made way to let His Royal Hotness through.

“Lay-­deez,” he said, pulling on a white cotton shirt as he strolled through the madness toward us.

The music got turned down a little more, and everyone quieted down with it, looking our way. That’s how mesmerizing he was: you tuned in to his voice automatically.

“And what can we do for you?” Xar asked.

“Hi,” I said, a bit too shoutily. “I’m Ruby?”

“If your name’s not on the list, you’re not coming in,” hooted Granny Lycra, pulling not a bride’s veil but a widow’s veil of black over her face. It looked weird and horrible and scary—­but I ignored her. I ignored them all and spoke only to Xar.

“Ruby from Dartbridge? We met? Before…”

“Did we,” he said. It wasn’t a question.

“And this is Saskia,” I shouted.

“Any chance of a drink?” she asked, and before Xar could answer, she was elbowing her way across the room.

That’s Sask for you; she just does stuff, doesn’t she? And she gets what she wants. She wasn’t going to wait to be invited, so she invited herself. Xar didn’t look too pleased.

“She’s just come from the army base,” I said, hoping that would explain Sask’s party-­jeopardizing behavior.

“Oh, has she,” he said—­again, no question—­and he laughed—­a quick and quiet ha-­ha of a laugh—­and waved his hand in the air in a very royal way, which was apparently the command for the music to be turned back up, because that’s what happened.

The music got cranked back up, everyone carried on partying, and King Xar wandered off after Saskia.

For a moment I just stood there, like a panda/idiot—­then I spied… Oooh! There was a table piled high with food. Not the kind of trash I’d been eating, but properly made stuff. Stuff that looked deliciously good. I felt my stomach growl louder than the music.

Come to Momma! my head whispered at it.

I barged toward it.

“Hi!” shouted this girl who was already at the table. Her costume was hilarious: a walrus in a furry brown onesie, her plate piled high with items that she stuffed into her mouth between the two enormous papier-­mâché tusks on either side of her jaws.

“You look brilliant,” I shouted, giving her huge belly a friendly poke. It was seriously hard and seriously…real.

“I’m so sorry!” I shouted.

It wasn’t just an apology for the pregnant belly poke; it was a sorry for…uh. Dressed up or not dressed up, I could see immediately that she couldn’t have been much older than me. Nah—­it was worse than that. She was younger.

“You do look brilliant though,” I told her.

“You look awful,” she shouted but in a kind way. In the din, in the madness, I heard that kindness.

“I feel awful!” I shouted.

I did feel awful. I mean, it all looked great and stuff—­the party, the food—­but… Oh, my body! It hurt! And my head, which so often seemed to have a separate life from my body, it hurt too. It hurt a lot.

“I think I might have been in a coma,” I shouted.

Virginia Bergin learned to roller-skate with the children of eminent physicists.

She grew up in Abingdon, Oxfordshire, in a house tied to her father’s job. Her parents, the children of Irish and Polish immigrants – and one Englishwoman – had moved from Liverpool to the south of England in search of work.

Virginia studied psychology but ruined her own career when, dabbling in fine art at Central St Martins, she re-discovered creative writing. Since then she has written poetry, short stories, film and TV scripts and a play that almost got produced – but didn’t.

In between and alongside more jobs than you’ve had hot dinners, she has worked as a writer on TV, eLearning and corporate projects and has 22 broadcast and non-broadcast TV credits, from children’s favourite Big Cat Diary Family Histories (BBC) to the award-winning series Africa (Tigress Productions for National Geographic). Most recently, she has been working in online education, creating interactive courses for The Open University.

She has lived in North Wales, London and Bristol. In May 2015, she moved from a council estate in Bristol to live in rural Somerset, somewhere between Taunton, Chard and Ilminster. Her nearest neighbour is a horse.


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  1. My cats, food for my cats, and some form of alcohol...the drinking kind.

  2. My husband, my cats and a lighter or something to start a fire

  3. My hubby, kids, and my dog is all I need....maybe. lol

  4. A How to Survive in the Wilderness for Dummies book, water purifying solution/tablets and my bamboo twin sticks! (There the only weapon I really felt competent at in learning Tae Kwon Do)
    Mary G Loki

  5. My family, my cats, and Chuck Norris. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

  6. My dogs, book on surviving in the wild and a knife.


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