Today I have the lovely Holly Cupala sharing a deleted scene with us from her fabulous book Don't Breathe a Word. Seriously, this book is AMAZING! If you haven't given it a read yet you need to get on it. It's definitely a contemporary must read! Without further ado take it away Holly.
Thank you for inviting me to That Hapa Chick, Julia, and thanks to everyone for stopping by to hear more secrets about Don’t Breathe a Word! Here is an exclusive peek at a deleted scene…
Once, after Christmas, when Asher and I had been together seven or eight months, a record snowfall blew through the Northwest. Then, after it started to melt, it froze over again, creating patches of black ice under another six inches of snowdrift. Hazardous conditions for cars, potentially fatal for DeLoreans.
I’d called Asher’s cell phone. He didn’t answer, so I tried his work. Some guy answered and said he’d been in an accident and flipped the car. “Who’s this?” he asked. The question didn’t register until later—I’d never called Asher’s work before.
I got a sick feeling as my bracelet jangled against the phone. There was nothing to do but head for the Hummer with the studded winter tires, straight to the University through a fresh batch of snow. Was he hurt? Was he at the hospital?
I knew he was somewhere in the Zoology building at the south end of campus, or at the hospital across the street. I kept checking my phone for messages as I searched for the right building—he would call me if he could. Any second a crow might fly by and pick me off like a worm, as Asher often threatened. They weren’t even afraid of snow—I saw a group circling the building. I found the right hall, the right door. Asher had never brought me here, but they must know who I was. I burst through.
I shouted at the first person who looked at me, a rumpled-looking guy in glasses and a knitted green scarf: “Where’s Asher? Is he ok?”
It was like nobody had talked to him for days or maybe weeks. Or maybe nobody had yelled at him before. “Um, he didn’t come in. I think he’s at home. Are you the one who called? His sister?”
“He’s at home?” I shouted back. And then, “I’m not his sister. I’m his girlfriend.”
Now he looked shocked and totally disbelieving.
I spun on my Converse, still slick from the snow, and headed out to the Hummer. It took me a half hour to get it turned around and back on the bridge to Asher’s apartment, where I found him lying on his couch, his phone turned off.
“What’s going on?” I spat, all the anxiety of finding him dead on the street suddenly transforming into a torrent of anger.
“Excuse me?” He was infuriatingly calm. “I could say the same thing to you. What are you doing here?”
“You’re lying there like you’re taking the day off and not like you just almost died. What happened?”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about. Please don’t scream at me.”
“Your car?” I shouted, his request making me even more annoyed. “Your coworker guy said you were in a car accident.”
“You called my work?” Suddenly, he was standing, and I realized how much less intimidating he had been lying down. Everything in me seemed to shrivel.
“Yeah,” I said in a much smaller voice. “The guy thought I was your sister.” I left the rest unsaid. Didn’t he tell them he had a girlfriend? Was he ashamed of me?
But he ignored the implication that hung in the air. “What were you doing calling my work? Why didn’t you call my cell phone?”
“I don’t know. You turned it off. Wait, what about the crash?”
“Oh, wait. You called.”
I was confused. “What do you mean? Yes, I called you.”
“Well, somebody called me right as my car was spinning out in all this ice, which is why I lost control of the car—in fact, the car might be totaled.” He sat back down with a heavy sigh. “Thanks. Perfect timing. Oh, and I especially appreciate you going to my work and freaking out in front of my coworkers. They probably think I’m a pedophile now. Great…and then…”
But I could no longer hear him because I was sinking down into that place, down where no one could touch me—the place of shame he created for me, word by word.
When I first started writing Don’t Breathe a Word, I didn’t think it would be a story about the most insidious kind of abuse—the kind that didn’t leave any marks except on your soul. Asher just showed up in those first few pages…seductive and powerful and cruel. This was one of my early attempts to capture the kind of person he was, and how his actions affected Joy. Even though this scene didn’t end up in the final version, it was a snapshot of the secret things that went on in the year they spent together. It also was a huge contrast to the romance she eventually finds with Creed.
Thank you, Julia, for having me, and I hope all of you readers enjoy Don’t Breathe a Word! Stop by the Don’t Breathe a Word tour for more secrets, swag, and more!
Thanks so much Holly! Be sure to add Don't Breathe a Word to your books on GoodReads.
Now on to the giveaway. This giveaway is a little tricky so bear with me guys. :P Here's how it works:
HarperCollins is giving away a BUNCH of copies of Don't Breathe a Word! There are several ways you can earn entries into the giveaway:
- You get one automatic entry when you fill out the giveaway form
- Everytime you comment on one of the DBAW Tour posts you get one extra entry (you must link to your comment)
- You get one extra entry if you tweet, share on Facebook, do a blog post, etc, to get the word out about DBAW but you can only do each thing once. (you must have the link)
Now here are the rules. You must fill out the entry form EACH time you do one of these things. So say you comment on this post and tweet. You will need to fill out the entry form TWICE in order for both entries to count. The reason why is we need the URL in order for the entries to count.
This giveaway is open internationally just be sure the Book Depository ships to your country!
Fill out the giveaway form here!
There will be 7 giveaway winners picked weekly and there will also be a final drawing for all of the collective entries on January 15th.
Good luck and don't forget to check out Don't Breathe a Word!