Today marks TWO WHOLE YEARS since I officially launched this website, and thus Rebecca Alasdair was born. I have a couple of things in store for my 2nd blogiversary, including 2 brand-new excerpts from my WIPs. Please come and join the celebration! →
Incredibly, it has now been two whole years since I officially launched this website / blog, and thus, today, I celebrate the 2nd birthday of Rebecca Alasdair! The time has absolutely flown by and sometimes, when I look back, I can’t believe how far I’ve come already. So, to commemorate my 2nd blogiversary, I have a couple of things in store…
Most popular posts. I take a quick look at some of my most popular content from the last year, including the posts with the most views, most likes, and most comments!
Excerpts from my WIPs. Since I’m celebrating 2 years, I’ve decided to share with you 2 “new” excerpts, one from each of my current writing projects. I really hope you enjoy them!
Top 12 books. While I’ve read a stack of amazing books in the last 12 months, I’ve forced myself to select a list of 12 favourites to share with you today. Do we share any of the same reads?
Although I’ve been blogging less in 2019 than I did in 2018—and it still takes me AGES to prepare my posts—I continue to learn something every time I upload new content. Here is a selection of some of my most popular posts over the last 12 months. Thank you to everyone and anyone who has engaged with them or any of my other posts. I really appreciate it!! ❤
~ MOST VIEWS ~
~ MOST COMMENTS ~
~ MOST LIKES ~
As you may be aware, I currently have 2 key writing projects: one a contemporary YA novel, and the other an epic fantasy series. To celebrate my blogiversary, here are 2 short excerpts, one from each of my WIPs. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did writing them!
“The weight of the sky—of the whole world—was pushing down, and it was crushing me.”
Carter Cantwell seems to have it all: brains, athleticism, musical talent, and a winning personality to boot. But he’s gotten good at pretending. No one sees through his façade, to the real him, buried deep inside.
Then Carter meets Remy. And that’s when it all starts to fall apart…
Read the whole first chapter of Holding Up the Sky here.
—EXCERPT FROM CHAPTER 3
The afternoon light stabbed into my eyes as I left the building. I scrubbed a hand viciously over my face, blinking away the glare—and froze.
Remy sat on one of the granite boulders framing the entranceway. The rock was so large his toes barely brushed the ground, and he swung his legs absently, calves connecting with the stone on every downward swing.
An unfamiliar feeling shivered through me at the sight of him sitting there, waiting.
I wanted to turn and run.
My shadow fell over him as I approached. Remy glanced up at the same time as I glanced away, avoiding his all-seeing gaze. I scuffed my shoe along the ground as I tried to find the right words. “I didn’t mean to shout at you,” I said.
“And I didn’t mean to upset you more,” he replied. “I really did come to see if you were all right.”
I dragged my eyes up to his face. His open, honest face, fringed by that pale gold hair, robbed of its luminous sheen now that I was blocking his sun. “Why?” The question came out on a near-inaudible breath.
But Remy still heard it. “What do you mean why?” he said, taken aback. “You’re my friend, and I was worried about you. Isn’t that reason enough?”
I didn’t point out that none of the others had come. Not even Jake.
Now that we were out of that suffocating practice room, now that my irritation with Jamie had chased away the worst of my melancholy, I was oddly…touched that Remy was here. That he had stayed.
He was studying me like a puzzle he couldn’t solve. “You’re an enigma, Carter Cantwell.”
“You’re so friendly with people,” Remy went on. “You say hi to everyone and you greet them by name, even the kids in other year levels. You always make time to help others with their problems, even when you’re so busy yourself.”
A frown crept across his face. “But you go quiet when no one is looking. Sometimes you go almost a whole hour at lunchtime without saying a word, and I’ve never heard you ask a question in class. You seem remarkably wary of the limelight for the most well-known guy at this school.”
Remy saw all that? His perceptiveness was unnerving. He’d noticed in little more than a week what my friends hadn’t noticed in years.
But there was still so much he didn’t know.
“You like to keep your troubles to yourself, huh?”
I licked my lips, shifted my weight from one foot to the other. Back again. I didn’t know what to say. What did he want me to say?
What do you want me to say, Remy?
The thoughtful hum that came from him then immediately set me on edge. Remy slithered off the rock, rubber soles crunching on the gravel of the garden bed where he landed.
Bringing him chest to chest with me where I stood mere inches away on the path.
I sucked in a breath, leaning back, away, but Remy’s arms snaked out and wound around my waist. Pulled me close.
I stilled, the surface of my skin running hot, then cold, buzzing with the murmur of a hundred thousand ants.
His Mohawk scraped my chin as he stepped away. The faint strawberry scent of his hair gel lingered in my nose. “Sorry,” Remy said, cheeks pink and glowing with earnestness. “You looked like you needed a hug.”
I swallowed, and it felt like I was swallowing glass. When was the last time anyone had hugged me? I couldn’t…
My gaze dropped to the concrete beneath my feet as I remembered a day of thunder and hail and rain. The sun was out today, the expanse above my head clear and blue and whole, but it felt as if the sky was falling on me all over again, with no way to hold it up. Miles wasn’t here to protect me anymore.
He hadn’t been for a long time.
“The Old has returned…and what once was, will be again.”
For a thousand years none have dared to enter the Tainted Land, but when Asa O’Dair spills sacred blood on its once-sacred soil, fulfilling an ancient prophecy, an evil long-thought vanquished begins to stir.
Now, Asa and his adopted brother Kael must travel to the city-state of Asphodel, where treachery and dissent lurk within the ranks of the Graceborn, and they learn that a great and terrible destiny awaits them both.
Read the full blurb of Blood of Old here.
—EXCERPT FROM CHAPTER 9: THE LOST
Kael didn’t know how long he sat there, rocking back and forth and yanking at his hair until his scalp stung. At first he couldn’t quite identify what had snapped him from his stupor of self-pity, but then a strange noise sent him scrambling to his feet. It was a kind of strangled whimper, coming from the direction of their camp.
His own troubles forgotten, Kael raced back towards the fire with his heart in his throat. If something had happened to his brother while he was…
But it wasn’t Asa. Kael skidded to a halt not far from where the embers burned low. His brother was curled up on his bedroll, blankets snug around his body as he slumbered peacefully on.
The same could not be said of Endrid. The Weaver thrashed from side to side, choked moans spilling from his throat. A sheen of sweat glistened on his face and neck, and his own blanket was twisted around his legs.
Kael bit his lip and raised his eyes to Tora. She sat near Endrid’s feet, knees tucked up to her chest and her arms draped loosely around them. “Shouldn’t you wake him up?” he asked softly.
“He needs to sleep,” Tora replied.
“What’s…wrong with him?”
Tora’s shoulders stiffened almost imperceptibly. When she glanced at him, her expression was grim, and Kael briefly wondered if he actually wanted to know what kind of terrors stalked a Graceborn’s dreams.
Turning back away, Tora murmured, “Endrid only took the Trial last lunation. It’s the final test an Apprentice must take before achieving the rank of Graceborn and giving their oath to Asphodel.”
Kael frowned. After everything that had happened, he had trouble believing that Endrid had only completed his training a few weeks earlier, but he saw no reason for Tora to lie.
“The Trial,” she said, “forces an Apprentice to confront certain fears and truths about themselves. We all fear something.” Sorrow flashed through her eyes as she watched Endrid cry out. “But it’s hardest when the thing you fear most is yourself.”
Kael sank down next to his brother, his insides twisting. “Asa is a healer, before anything else. He fears hurting people with this new Talent.”
“And you fear the water.”
Kael flinched. It wasn’t untrue, even if it hadn’t always been. He should have known Tora wouldn’t let the incident at the river slide.
“Can you not swim?” she asked.
“I can swim just fine,” he snapped.
Asa mumbled something in his sleep and rolled over, snuggling the blankets to him. Kael reached out to touch his brother’s cheek and found it cool to the touch. His fever had broken. Relief swamped Kael, even if Endrid had said the fevers were a normal part of awakening.
He was glad this one was gone.
“We have a saying, amongst the Graceborn,” said Tora. Her voice was firm, but there was a gentler edge to it now. “‘Me var ra var.’ In the Ancient Tongue, it means ‘I am what I am’. Asa is what he is, Kael. You can’t change it, you can’t protect him from it, and you can’t shield him from what his future may hold. If you try, it will only bring pain to you both.”
Kael glared into the fire. “Then how am I supposed to help him?”
“You do for your brother what Endrid’s brothers never did for him.”
“And what’s that?”
Tora met Kael’s eyes. The corner of her mouth pulled up in a funny half-smile. “The only thing you can. You make sure he knows he is loved.”
I have read SO MANY amazing books in the last 12 months, but I thought I’d share 12 of the best here. In the interest of keeping the list diverse, I set a limit of including only one book from any given series. Do we share any favourites?