Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.
Today, we're joining forces with Rockstar Book Tours and Disney Hyperion to shine the BOOK SPOTLIGHT on a NEW MIDDLE GRADE title COMING SOON to a bookstore shelf near you! It's perfect for the reading season and sounds UBER exciting, so without further ado, allow me to introduce you to today's blog tour guest...
Elizabeth Webster and the Court of Uncommon Pleas
About the book...
Welcome to Elizabeth Webster's world, where the common laws of middle school torment her days . . . and the uncommon laws of an even weirder realm govern her nights.
Elizabeth Webster is happy to stay under the radar (and under her bangs) until middle school is dead and gone. But when star swimmer Henry Harrison asks Elizabeth to tutor him in math, it's not linear equations Henry really needs help with-it's a flower-scented, poodle-skirt-wearing, head-tossing ghost who's calling out Elizabeth's name.
But why Elizabeth? Could it have something to do with her missing lawyer father? Maybe. Probably. If only she could find him. In her search, Elizabeth discovers more than she is looking for: a grandfather she never knew, a startling legacy, and the secret family law firm, Webster & Son, Attorneys for the Damned.
Elizabeth and her friends soon land in court, where demons and ghosts take the witness stand and a red-eyed judge with a ratty white wig hands out sentences like sandwiches. Will Elizabeth's father arrive in time to save Henry Harrison-and is Henry the one who really needs saving?
Set in the historic streets of Philadelphia, this riveting middle-grade mystery from New York Times best-selling author William Lashner will have readers banging their gavels and calling for more from the incomparable Elizabeth Webster.
~~~ EXCERPT ~~~
-- Chapter 3--
Shortly after my mother got remarried, she arranged for me to have a talk with a nice psychologist. At the time I didn’t understand why I needed to talk to anyone. Do you think maybe it was because of the way I acted at the wedding?
I told my mother I didn’t want to go and see the nice lady. I buried my face in a pillow and screamed when she insisted. And then, in the doctor’s office, I sat on the couch with my arms crossed for the entire “talk.”
“I feel some anger here,” said the doctor.
You think? Like I said, she was nice, and she tried really hard, but there was all this stuff swirling in my head that made dealing with her impossible. I mean, how do you put a tornado into words?
“Tell me about yourself, Elizabeth,” said the doctor.
And right there, at her very first question, I was stumped. What could I say then? What could I say now? When I thought about myself, I only thought about who I wasn’t and what I couldn’t do. I wasn’t an actor or a singer—my grandmother once described my voice as frog-like. Yes, my grandmother! My math was okay, sure, and I liked to read manga paperbacks, stories about wide-eyed girls with supernatural powers—everyone needs heroes—but I couldn’t dance or write poetry, my clarinet was a certified instrument of torture, and I certainly wasn’t a sparkling conversationalist, as my mother pointed out to me every night at dinner.
“So how was school today, Elizabeth?” she asked after dishing out the meatloaf, potatoes, and peas.
“Did anything exciting happen?”
“You must go to the most deadly dull school in America,” said my stepfather, Stephen Scali, in his slow voice. Stephen, bald and thin, suffered from an incurable disease called boringitis. “Gosh, I remember all my adventures in junior high. I might have to call the principal and tell her that they need to liven up the place.”
“Please don’t. Tell him, Mom, please.”
“Don’t get into such a huff,” said my mother. “More mashed potatoes, Peter?”
“What’s a huff?” said my little brother, Peter.
“You know the big bad wolf?” said my mother. “Well he huffs before he puffs.”
“He smokes?” said Peter.
“No wonder he couldn’t blow down that house,” I said.
Peter laughed. Unlike me, Peter, who was in the second grade at my old elementary school, laughed a lot.
“We don’t want to embarrass you, Elizabeth,” said Stephen. “We’re just trying to be part of your life.”
“Why?” I said. “Even I don’t want to be part of my life.”
My mother looked at Stephen with that look. You know the look. I was one step away from another talk with the nice psychologist, when my brother flew to my rescue.
“We went into space today,” said Peter.
“Was it exciting?” said my mother.
“Not really, until we almost ran out of fuel and started falling back to earth. The lights flicked on and off and some kids started shouting until Mrs. Swinton just happened to remember to fire up the booster rockets.”
“Thank goodness for Mrs. Swinton,” said Stephen.
“She sure saved the day,” said Peter, giving me a glance to let me know who was really being saved. “If she can flick the lights fast enough, next week we’re landing on the moon.”
“That sounds like fun,” I said. “I could use a few weeks on the moon myself. Can I go with?”
“You have to bring your own lunch,” said Peter. “Moon pies.”
“Yum,” I said.
“And Mrs. Swinton told us we need to bring moon boots.”
“What’s a moon boot?” I asked.
“I think it’s just a sneaker with duct tape all around it.”
“Stylish,” I said.
“I’ll ask for you, Lizzie,” said Peter, “but there might not be enough seats. And with you on board, we would need more fuel. Mrs. Swinton is a little crazy about the fuel.”
I glanced up to see my mother smiling at me, as if I had just had a breakthrough. Peter sat back with a smirk like he had arranged it all, which he had. He was a sharp little weasel, my brother.
Mom remarried two years after the divorce. Two years of it just being her and me. When Stephen appeared, I didn’t get why we needed this new guy around. I even insisted—with a series of endless arguments that my mom and Stephen still shake their heads about—that I retain my original last name. I don’t remember why I was fighting so hard, but eventually I got my way.
Since then, to be honest, I hadn’t been so nice to Stephen. At first it was to punish him for coming between me and my mom, and then later it was just out of habit. I even called him Stephen so I wouldn’t have to call him Dad. But there was no question that the greatest thing Stephen ever had done, or could do, for me was to give me Peter.
For the rest of dinner, as mom talked about this and that, and Peter laughed, and Stephen droned on about something boring that happened at work, we were almost like a happy family, the three Scalis sitting around the table, tolerating the Webster in their midst.
“More cake?” said my mother.
“Can’t,” I said. “Have to go.”
“I’m tutoring some kid in math.”
“Good for you, Elizabeth,” said my mother. “Who are you tutoring?”
“No one.” I stood, grabbed my plate and took it to the sink. “Bye.”
“It’s just some guy who asked for help with linear equations.”
“Yes. But which guy?”
“You don’t know him. Henry Harrison.”
“The swimmer?” said Stephen, suddenly alert.
“That’s the one.”
“There was a front-page article on him in the sports section. He won his age group in the states. They say he’s a potential Olympian.”
“So what?” I said. “If there’s anything I care less about than sports I haven’t found it yet.”
“What about patents?” asked Stephen, a patent lawyer to his bones.
“A close second.” A patent is like this little piece of paper that lets you build things but that keeps other people from building the same—sorry, I have to stop. If I keep explaining this right now I’ll fall into the most boring coma of all time. “See you,” I said.
“You want a ride?” Stephen asked hopefully, as if he were anxious to meet the swimming hero. How embarrassing would that be?
“No,” I said, “absolutely not.”
“Elizabeth?” said my mother.
“I’ve been walking alone to my friends’ houses since I was nine,” I said. “This is no different.” Before either of them could say anything more I was out of the kitchen and reaching for my coat.
If I had known then what was in store for me, I wouldn’t have been in such a rush. I might have bagged on Henry Harrison completely and stayed at home. I would have planned our trip to the moon with Petey or done homework in the kitchen while my mother graded papers. It would have been a night like every other night—calm, and quiet, and eye-crossingly dull.
Instead, a few minutes later I was hurrying along the sidewalk to Henry Harrison’s house.
-- copyright Disney Hyperion --
About the author...
|William Lashner Photo © Sigrid Estrada|
William Lashner is the New York Times Bestselling creator of Victor Carl, who has been called by Booklist one of the mystery novel’s “most compelling, most morally ambiguous characters.” The Victor Carl novels, which have been translated into more than a dozen foreign languages and have been sold all across the globe, include BAGMEN, KILLER’S KISS, FALLS THE SHADOW, FATAL FLAW, and HOSTILE WITNESS. He is also the author of GUARANTEED HEROES, THE BARKEEP, which was an Edgar Award nominee and a Digital Book World Number One Bestseller, THE ACCOUNTING, and BLOOD AND BONE.
Writing under the pseudonym of Tyler Knox, Lashner is also the author of KOCKROACH, described as “roaringly entertaining,” by Publisher’s Weekly, and “an energetic tour de force,” by USA Today. As Tyler Knox he has written a number of book reviews for the Washington Post Book World.
Lashner was a criminal prosecutor with the Department of Justice in Washington D.C. before quitting the law to write fulltime. A graduate of the New York University School of Law, as well as the Iowa Writers' Workshop, he lives with his wife and three children outside Philadelphia.
3 winners will receive a finished copy of
ELIZABETH WEBSTER AND THE COURT OF UNCOMMON PLEAS!
ELIZABETH WEBSTER AND THE COURT OF UNCOMMON PLEAS!
Special thanks to Rockstar Book Tours for the chance to bring this tour to you. (THANKS!) For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, this tour, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above. This title is available now, so click on over to your favorite online retailer to snag your copy today! Be sure to check out the rest of the tour for more bookish fun...
*** Blog Tour Schedule ***
10/1/2019- Pandora's Books- Excerpt
10/2/2019- Southern Girl Bookaholic- Review
10/3/2019- Shelf-Rated- Review
10/4/2019- BookHounds YA- Excerpt
10/7/2019- Odd and Bookish- Review
10/8/2019- EatingbetweenthelinesINC- Review
10/9/2019- Little Red Reads- Review
10/10/2019- History from a Woman’s Perspective- Review
10/11/2019- Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers- Excerpt
10/14/2019- Books_andPoetrii- Excerpt
10/15/2019- Jena Brown Writes- Review
10/16/2019- Nerdophiles- Review
10/17/2019- Savings in Seconds- Review
10/18/2019- The Reading Corner for All- Review
10/21/2019- Books a Plenty Book Reviews- Review
10/22/2019- Wonder Struck- Review
10/23/2019- Smada's Book Smack- Review
10/24/2019- Novel Novice- Excerpt
10/25/2019- fictitious.fox- Review
10/28/2019- Fyrekatz Blog- Review
10/29/2019- Two points of interest- Review
10/30/2019- Fictitiouswonderland- Review
10/31/2019- PopTheButterfly Reads- Review
Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!