I'm looking at another move, this time out of state and to a place I've never lived before. This is the second time this has happened in my life. When I married in the early 80's, I left behind Ohio for Michigan. While I only knew one person, I quickly learned to love my new hometown. I believe this gives me a unique perspective on what a person is willing to do for love.
Have you ever moved away from home with your husband and only him? Left behind your family and friends?
In Amanda Marin's new release, North to Nara, she explores what one young couple is willing to give up for love. It's more than just moving, though. Her story is about the quest for a society where everyone is allowed to live freely. This is such an important piece in light of our own world these days.
I hope you will pick up your own copy and share with me what you think of this Dystopian romance which felt a lot like Hunger Games mixed with The Handmaid's Tale.
Behind the beauty is heartache... unless their love can save them.
Neve Hall has always admired the good works of the civil servants who brought prosperity back to the Nation. She especially respects the Sufferers—empaths who, with the help of technology, anonymously bear others’ troubles for them. But when her assigned empath is abruptly retired, she uncovers certain secrets. Like the identity of her new Sufferer, Micah Ward... and the fact that behind his kind smile is a life filled with loneliness and pain.
The closer Neve grows to Micah, the more desperate she becomes to protect him from a cruel and gruesome fate. But in a world where only a few are allowed the luxury of love, saving Micah comes with a price: Neve must choose between her loyalty to the Nation or her heart—a decision that will take them both on a race for their freedom, and their lives.
I have no way of knowing if my attempt to keep pain from Micah has worked—I don’t, at least, until a couple days later, when he visits me again in the butterfly exhibit. We walk around the museum corridors once more, this time in a different direction, on a different floor—through an exhibit on horses. And we talk.
“Did you suppress things this week at the Center?” He asks this almost immediately, after he tells me the director still hasn’t made a decision about his punishment.
I bite my lip and glance away, trying to distract myself by examining a prehistoric drawing of a pony. If I admit the truth, Micah might ask me more questions. He might ask why I did it. And even though I know the answer—because I think it’s cruel what the Nation has done to him, because I like being near him, and because I almost certainly care more about him than I should—the idea of telling him all this scares me.
“Yes,” I say, my voice small and timid. “How did you know?”
“It felt different this time,” he explains softly. “It was easier. Less painful.”
I look up at him again. “Then I’m glad,” I tell him. “That was what I hoped for.”
He pauses, and I see the confusion in his face, the way it knits his eyebrows closer together. He’s never had a Sieve suppress feelings to protect him before, I’m sure. He’s only ever had them take from him. He doesn’t quite seem to know what to make of it.
“You know you don’t have to do that, right…?” he asks.
Micah’s quiet a moment as we continue walking, probably guessing correctly the reasons for my suppression, whether I say them out loud or not. I’ve been paper-thin to him since our first Suffering session, after all: he’s always seen through me. Then, as we round a corner, his hand brushes against mine. His fingertips gently graze against my knuckles, testing to see if I pull away.
Instead, I slip my hand into his.
And he smiles.
Be Sure to Grab Your Own Copy Today!
About the Author:
When Amanda was a child, her father traveled frequently for business, always bringing her back a book as a present. Whether she was getting lost in the pages of a tale about far-away knights, girls with supernatural powers, or kindly giants, she was quickly hooked on stories.
Over the years, Amanda has followed her own yellow brick road of reading and writing, and although her adventures haven't involved sword fights or saving the planet from certain annihilation, they have involved jobs in scholarly publishing and marketing, a modest amount of travel, and a lifelong love of novels.
Amanda holds degrees in English from Salve Regina University and Boston College. She lives in southern New Hampshire with her family and a precocious pet poodle named Snickers.
Musings from Michigan