The Undead: Playing for Keeps is a YA Paranormal by Elsie Elmore that releases on September 3rd from Curiosity Quills. And let me tell you, it’s worth reading! I got seriously freaked out in all the rights places, and I loved the emphasis on family. Read, read, read it!
When an undead woman with serious de-comp issues stalks sixteen-year-old Lyla Grimm, her hope of rescuing her rock-bottom reputation takes a back seat. Especially once Lyla’s new talent of resurrecting the dead draws the attention of Eric, a Grim Reaper with a guitar and a chip on his shoulder.
While Lyla navigates the gossip-ridden halls, Eric works to gain her trust and discover why Death’s clients aren’t staying down. If she passes on her gift, his death-
messenger destiny might be altered. But the closer he gets to Lyla, the less sure he is of his plan. The dead are way easier to deal with than the living.
Gossip explodes, the Grimm family implodes, and desperation sets in. Death wants the gift and a soul. Lyla and Eric face hard choices with hidden consequences. Sometimes life’s choices aren’t really choices at all.
Chapter One Excerpt
CHAPTER ONE: Lyla
My stomach drops when I see the dead woman lying on the table. Convinced the dim light is playing tricks on my eyes, I reach over and flip the switch. The overhead fluorescents flicker on and light cascades down onto the body. Dread replaces the doubt. I move closer for a better look. She’s not peaceful like the others. This is bad, really bad. Mom will go ballistic when she sees this.
“Lyla, what are you doing back here?” Ben whispers and gives me a playful shove.
I flinch, almost coming out of my skin. Ben’s always been better at the scaring game we started a long time ago. While I both love and hate our game, I also suck at it. I turn and squint at him. “Asshole. This room should be off limits.”
“Language,” he chides and clicks his tongue. After glancing at the body, he steps up beside me and snickers. “You’re in so much trouble,” he says, drawing out each word as if it were a paragraph.
“No, I’m not.”
“She’s gone, I guess.”
Kate Huntington, the eccentric beautician with tacky green highlights is gone, and only her handiwork remains. Glittery blue eye shadow and sapphire eyeliner cover the dead woman’s lids. Black mascara coats her lashes so thickly that her eye sockets resemble piles of tangled spider legs. She looks like a showgirl, an old, dead showgirl. I don’t even want to acknowledge the dark foundation, the cherry red lipstick, or the words “I quit” scrawled in eyeliner across her forehead.