Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Excerpt & Giveaway: Renegade by Debra Driza

You can see the complete tour schedule here.

Series: MILA 2.0 #2 
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: May 13th 2014

There is no one left for Mila to trust. Except for a boy she barely knows.

But Hunter has no idea who—and what—Mila really is. She can’t bear to reveal her secret, even though he’s unwittingly joined her search for Richard Grady, a man who may know more details of Mila’s complicated past.

Yet the road to the truth is more dangerous than ever. With General Holland and the Vita Obscura scouring the earth for her whereabouts, Mila must rely on her newfound android abilities to protect herself and Hunter from imminent harm. Still, embracing her identity as a machine leads her to question the state of her humanity—as well as Hunter’s real motives.

Perfect for fans of I Am Number Four and Divergent, this action-packed and heart-wrenching second installment of MILA 2.0 will leave readers breathlessly awaiting the series conclusion.

If I could record real-life moments in my head like a DVR, this afternoon would top the list as one of the most replayed. Far-fetched? Maybe for a normal girl. But normal wasn’t a word that applied to my life anymore. Though, at this precise moment, I was giving it my best shot. Focusing on the now—just me, salt, sand, and the blazing sun baking my skin and reflecting off the dark-haired boy’s head like a million tiny sparklers. 

 White froth lapped at the shore mere inches from my toes—6.15, to be exact—but my focus remained intent on his head, bobbing out past the breaking waves. He dove under them with the fluid ease of a sea creature, and even from here I could catch glimpses of the sheer bliss on his face. Hunter was completely in his element. 

 Enjoy it while you can, I silently urged him. We wouldn’t be staying long. 

Or maybe we would. I had decisions to make yet, about my future. 

Overhead, a seagull squawked before dive-bombing a leftover morsel on the sand. At the harsh cry, something rippled in the far recesses of my mind, then disappeared. 

 I shivered, like the sun had dipped beneath a cloud. 

 Hunter swam with sure strokes in my direction, water curling behind him in a huge arch. I held my breath. Compared to the wave, he looked so small and insignificant. The water swept him up and in an explosion of white foam, he vanished. 

 I jumped to my feet, but then he rose from the water like an offering from the sea. My phantom heart returned to its regularly scheduled pumping cycle. 

I sank back onto my motel towel. Silly. Of course he was fine. 

Not that I didn’t have reason for major anxiety issues.

 He padded toward me, water beading on his bare skin, his shaggy hair clinging to his neck and causing rivulets to rain down his chest. 

“Sure you don’t want to come in? The water feels great.” 

 “No thanks.” Too hard to be on alert when you were in the middle of the ocean. But of course, I hadn’t said that. My no-swimsuit excuse was much less of an eyebrow-raiser. 

Hunter threw himself onto the sand beside me, flinging tiny droplets onto my bare arm. I watched them cling to my skin, and Hunter’s gaze followed mine. 

 “It’s not because of that, right?” His gaze skimmed my left shoulder, which was covered by the sleeve of my slightly rumpled T-shirt. “Your arm’s okay in water?” 

“Yeah, it’s fine.” But his attention made me self-conscious. I folded both arms over my bent knees, making sure the right one ended up on top. Not because I was bashful about my prosthetic limb, like Hunter assumed when he saw wires protruding from it like busted bicycle spokes back in Clearwater, but because my arm wasn’t really prosthetic. 

 Not in the true sense of the word, anyway. Though, technically speaking, I guess you could consider all of me prosthetic. One of the many pitfalls of being an android. 

My stomach twisted, making me sigh. Another pitfall? Finding a tactful way to tell the boy you liked the truth about your little issue with nonhumanness. 

 In my defense—I didn’t know him all that well. Not unless you considered a shared truck crash, a late-night interlude involving a barn, and a date gone wrong to be the cornerstones of a profound relationship. Yet from the moment I’d met him, something about him called to me. Maybe because we were both loners. Maybe that was what formed the basis for our instant connection. All I knew was that after my world had imploded two days ago, I’d made a panicked phone call and Hunter had answered and here we were, in Virginia Beach. 

 He trailed his fingers along the area between my sleeve and elbow. I could feel the individual granules of sand that clung to his skin, but I was more focused on the thrill generated by his touch.

 “I can’t get over how real it feels,” he said. “I had no idea they’d come so far in prosthetics.” 

 “It’s a prototype.” I looked into his eyes. “Experimental. Seems to be working okay.”

 He shook his head. “I’m not sure I’d have the courage to be a test subject.” 

Test subject, ha. That was one way to describe it. Not that I’d really had a choice in the matter. “The risks were low.” 

 “Still, you’re like on the frontier of science.” 

 If only he knew . . . 

“Do you realize how many people will benefit because you were willing to take a chance?” 

“Don’t make me sound like a hero. I’m not.” 

He grinned. “Modest, too.” 

I flicked some sand at him, hoping to get us off this subject. His eyes narrowed. Then, he leaned over and shook his mass of dark hair. Water drops flew everywhere, catching me in the face. I threw up my hands and squealed.

 “I’m sorry, did I get you wet?” he said, all false innocence and fluttering lashes. 

“Fiend,” I said, but my smile faded after a few moments. Silence hung between us, filled with the repetitive roar of waves, voices of the scattered tourists enjoying the early October sun, and the expectant hush of things left unsaid. I’d yet to explain to Hunter the reasons behind the panic-struck phone call that had summoned him to my side.

 He hadn’t pressured me, but it was only a matter of time. I couldn’t expect someone to drive across five states at the drop of a hat without rewarding him with some kind of feasible explanation. The problem was—in my case, the truth sounded less feasible than the most fantastical lie.

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I'm the author of the MILA 2.0 series and the owner of the messiest purse on the planet, aka: the black hole of doom. I think bow ties are cool and when I grow up, I want to be Veronica Mars.
I rarely check my account at Goodreads, so if you need to get in touch with me, try twitter or Debra at
Win (1) of (2) sets of both books in the MILA 2.0 series (Mila 2.0 and Renegade) by Debra Driza (US ONLY):
 a Rafflecopter giveaway  


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