To celebrate that fact I've got an excerpt of the novel here for you today, AND a chance to win a copy of the book.
Seventeen-year-old Emily’s world crumbles when her boy friend dumps her, and when she thinks her life can’t possibly get any worse, a series of secrets are revealed that threaten to tear her beloved family apart. Emily’s heart has been broken into a hundred pieces and she feels like there is no one to turn to, until an unexpected friendship blossoms with a troubled classmate named Leo. Sometimes moody but always supportive, Leo is Emily’s rock in an ocean of confusion and disbelief.
But Leo doesn’t have an easy life either. He struggles to be both mother and father to his little sister while his mom battles her alcohol addiction. His deadbeat dad darts in and out of the picture, and Leo would rather he stay away, permanently. The two friends lean on each other, and in the end discover the inner strength to face whatever life throws at them.
With incredible insight into the teenage psyche and speckled with pitch-perfect humor, author Sylvia Gunnery has created a heart-warming coming-of-age story that explores the intricacies of family and friendship.
An excerpt from 'Emily For Real':
In the dream, I’m sound asleep here in bed. But I can still see because I’m watching Brian walking in through my bedroom door. He just comes and stands beside my bed. He’s wearing his blue jacket and it’s zipped up like it was cold when he was outside. I want to wake up and tell him how happy I am that he’s back, how much I missed him. I want to hold him and feel him holding me. Only I can’t move and I can’t talk. It’s like I’m trapped inside myself.
Even though I’m asleep, I realize that this is only a dream and that Brian isn’t actually standing beside my bed. So I try to wake myself up. With all my might I try to shake my head, but it won’t move. I keep trying and trying. It makes me panic. I shake my head and shake my head until suddenly I’m out of the dream. I’m here in my bed and of course Brian isn’t here with me. He won’t ever be with me. I can’t stand it.
Then all of a sudden I feel like I have to get out of here. I haul on my clothes and quietly go downstairs. On purpose I don’t have my cell with me. I put on my jacket and scarf and I go out. Sneak out.
Our neighborhood looks deserted. I don’t see one single other person, which I figure is a good thing considering it’s the middle of the night. The sound of my footsteps seems like it’s coming from somewhere else. Disconnected. All along this part of the street is a tall, thick hedge, and the streetlight is making my shadow fall on it. It’s like there’s a person I don’t know walking right beside me.
I remember when I was four or maybe five. Mom bought me new red rubber boots and a bright blue raincoat with a hat to match. I insisted on putting everything on that very afternoon and going out, even though it wasn’t raining. I went down our front walk and turned and waved at Mom who was waving at me. She let me go the whole way around our block all alone. I wasn’t afraid because I knew Mom was standing in our doorway, waiting for me to finally make it all the way back home.
I shiver because it’s cold and because I’m afraid.
I’m not sure if this was such a good idea. I picture people in these houses waking up and peering out their windows and saying, My goodness! That’s Emily Sinclair out there, walking in the middle of the night all by herself. Where is she going? Whatever is she thinking? Do her parents know where she is?
This is possibly the weirdest thing I’ve ever done.
I start walking faster and faster until I’ve gone all the way around the block and I can see our house again.
When I get home, I very quietly go in and take off my jacket and scarf. Then I tiptoe upstairs and get back
I don’t want to close my eyes. In case I dream about Brian again.
I'm intrigued! If you are as well, be sure to enter for a paperback of 'Emily For Real' and a message from Sylvia.
US & Canada only. Winners selected randomly using Rafflecopter. I will contact you by email and you will have 72 hours to respond with your mailing address. This will be forwarded on to the publisher and to Sylvia.
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