Release Day Blitz: Louder Than Words | Iris St. Clair | Excerpt | Giveaway

Louder Than Words
Author: Iris St. Clair
Reading Level: Young Adult
Genre: Contemporary
Released: September 16th 2014
Review Source: Swoon Romance


Disappointment has been on speed dial in Ellen Grayson's life lately. Her dad died, her mom numbs the grief with drugs and alcohol, and her so-called friends have slowly abandoned her.

Trusting a popular teacher with her troubles should have been safe and should NOT have led to an unwelcome seduction attempt that made her desperate to escape the final moments of Junior year. Lesson learned. Best to keep all the sordid details to herself and trust no one.

Enter Rex Jacobi, a cocky boy, recently transplanted from New York City and fellow summer camp employee. Though his quick wit and confidence draws her in, she can't let him get too close. And summer is just long enough and hot enough to keep a boy like that at arm's length.

But by the time Rex's charm wears down her resistance, it's too late. He's put Ellen on the "just friends" shelf and has shifted his romantic attentions to the impossibly annoying and perky anti-Ellen. Even worse, the teacher who tried to get her to sleep with him is still at it, preying on other girls while Ellen struggles to come to terms with what happened.

With her ability to trust as shaky as a chastity vow on prom night, Ellen must decide if she has enough remaining courage to speak up about the well-liked teacher and risk retribution, tell Rex how she really feels about him and risk heartbreak, or hold all her secrets inside. After all, it's the only safe place she knows when the only thing louder than words is the fear of being rejected.
"Tacos, Toilets and Douchebags"

A line three women deep greets me. Of course there's no line for the men's room. "Screw it," I declare and pop inside. It's a single-toilet bathroom with a lock. Who cares, other than that the hygienic conditions are worse than the ladies’ bathroom. I take my time placing three layers of toilet paper on the seat before using it. I scrub my hands extra thoroughly. After I've stalled long enough and no one has pounded on the door urging me to hurry up, I exit.

"Hello, Ellen."

Mr. Hamer looms over me. He's very tall and close enough that I can smell the beer on his breath. I don't meet his eyes. I don't want him to think a repeat of THE KISS is likely to happen, ever.


"How are you?"

I can't pass because he and the ladies’ bathroom line combined block my path. "I'm fine." I can't bring myself to ricochet the same pleasantry his way.

He gently takes my arm and backs up, pulling me past the ladies waiting but doesn't release me. I should yank away but part of me warns that sudden movements would be bad.

When he's effectively trapped me between him and the wall, he leans in and says, "I hope you aren't beating yourself up over what happened. It was just one of those crazy things done in the heat of the moment that didn't mean anything. Students often develop crushes on their teachers and sometimes they … act on those feelings."

Wow. He’s trying to play me? Un-friggin-believable. I want to call him out, but he’s offering a return ticket to normalcy, the appearance of normalcy. As galling as his little fairy tale is, I take the ticket. "Right. Sure."

"I hope there won't be any lingering awkwardness. I want you to know I'll respect your privacy, about what we discussed, you know," he leans closer, "about your mother. That's all."

As he talks, I can see a ground of black pepper stuck between his teeth. I can't tear my eyes away, until it occurs to me that I'm staring at his mouth.

"Uh, thanks. I appreciate that."

God, why am I so lame? Why can't I say what I mean? Why can't I just open my mouth and say, "You kissed me, you asswipe. I didn't, don't, and have never had a crush on you." Well, okay once upon a time I might have had a little crush on him. But not anymore, and it was never anything I would have acted upon. Ever. The curtain's been ripped away and instead of Oz I see him for what he is: a douchebag. I just want to get my tacos and go home. I turn to walk away but he takes my arm again.

"It's forgotten. Okay?" He smiles, but his eyes are two cold black pits.

Iris St. Clair is the pen name for a long-suffering cubicle worker by day, a Walter Mitty-like dreamer by night. (Her alter ego Tatiana Ivanadance also choreographs gravity-defying routines in those fantasies, but that's another bio.) No matter what genre she writes, she prefers witty, insecure heroines and kind, persistent heroes able to break through to the gooey heart inside. In high school she was voted most likely to win at Monopoly and Clue, but least likely to throw a ball anywhere near a target. Thank goodness writing requires less hand-eye coordination, punctuation errors notwithstanding.

Iris believes in the two-year "fish or cut bait" dating rule and has a 20+ year marriage and two teenaged sons as proof of concept. She lives, writes, dreams and dances in the rainy Portland, OR area.

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  1. First comment, this book looks so intriguing !

  2. Having been a bookworm in school I feel like a missed out on whole 'nother world. Luckily, I get another chance through books.

  3. Very intriguing. I bet many girls relate.

  4. This sounds like an emotional, intriguing read--definitely interested in reading it!


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