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Pierce the Darkness by Nannette Potter is a Fall Into These Great Reads pick #thriller #giveaway



Title: Pierce the Darkness


Author: Nannette Potter


Genre: Thriller


Book Blurb:


Disgraced impalement artist Genevieve “Blade” Broussard accepts a lucrative job offer from Spanish billionaire René Martel to perform at his villa on Mallorca. After narrowly escaping a kidnapping attempt upon landing on the island, Blade’s plight worsens when she discovers the job offer is a ruse to lure her unknown biological mother out into the open. After Blade overhears Martel’s scheme to assassinate world leaders at the United Nations in Geneva, she must risk an escape…or die trying.


A bold rescue by an elite team of the Soldati di Cristo, a secret Christian brotherhood, frees Blade from Martel’s control. But freedom comes at a cost, and her troubles are only beginning. Blade learns that Vivienne, her biological mother, is vice commander of the Soldati, and she will stop at nothing to protect her daughter and save the world from her twin brother.


Finding sanctuary with the Soldati, Blade tells them of the impending attack on the UN. As they prepare countermeasures, their headquarters is destroyed, leaving a remnant of their force to combat the threat. Meanwhile, Blade faces a personal crisis that leads her back to her kidnapper’s doorstep, resurrecting a past she’s long denied.


From Mallorca to Florence to Geneva, Blade and the Soldati are determined to stop Martel’s far more diabolical design to seize global control and install an authoritarian government. Failure is not an option or the delicate scales of world stability could shatter, leaving life as we know it in ruins.


Excerpt:


New Orleans, Louisiana


Genevieve “Blade” Broussard adjusted the push-up bra she wore under the black leather jumpsuit, exposing an almost indecent amount of cleavage. In this part of the French Quarter, a little skin sold tickets, and this gig barely covered her living expenses.


“Damn bikers are here again,” Xavier muttered, peeking around the edge of the shabby red velvet curtains that concealed the stage.


I can’t catch a break.


Six weeks ago, illusionist Nikki Flynn had come flying into The Rising Sun like a genie on a magic carpet, offering Blade the one thing she desired most: validation from a somebody that her impalement act was good enough to be on the world stage. Or at least on the Las Vegas Strip. But her big break as an opening act for the hottest new magic show on the Strip had turned into imminent unemployment.


Tonight was her last performance and she had no one to blame but herself. Trusting Mickey Gillespie, her dirtbag manager, to finalize the Las Vegas deal was foolish. If that wasn’t bad enough, she’d given Madam Toussaint two weeks’ notice without a signed contract in hand. As a final insult, Blade had learned Nikki Flynn had chosen a damn mind reader to be her opening act.


Blade clenched and unclenched her fists in an effort to relax. “We’re on in one minute.”


Xavier stretched one leg and then the other, his skintight leather pants molded to his thighs. Razor-edged abs glistened with posing oil. Her assistant popped his pecs and grinned. “Laissez les bons temps rouler.” Let the good times roll.


She nodded. “Let’s give them a show they won’t forget.”


“Welcome to the Jungle” blared over the sound system as the curtains opened. Blade and Xavier appeared in a perfectly choreographed routine to the standing-room-only crowd. The noise of the audience and music made her head throb, but she kept her practiced smile plastered on her face. She knew the stage lighting she’d chosen transformed her chestnut-colored hair into a lake of molten lava running over her shoulders. Twin bursts of faux fire rose eight feet in the air above them, drawing the eye to the Wheel of Death.


“What you are about to witness,” she said into her wireless headset mic, “can be dangerous and result in death. The impalement arts—”


“Hey Red, impale this,” a biker hollered, clutching his crotch in one hand and a Coors in the other.


Typical. The guy was straight out of Central Casting in his black skull cap, black wife-beater tank, and black leather vest with patches above each breast pocket. His whole crew wore black. They were a clichéd blight on the sea of people who had paid the cover charge to see this performance.


Ignore him. Just get through tonight and move on.


“This seems innocent enough,” she began again, brandishing her knife, allowing the light to catch the glint of steel. “But all is not what it appears to be. This blade can cut, or stab, or cleave. It can penetrate a beating heart or save one. Tonight, I will use this simple tool to blow—your—mind.”


Lights flickered as thunder rolled overhead, barely audible over the music. The crowd, clearly hammered, surged closer to the stage. Blade was fine with unpredictable crowds—she expected them, and used them to her advantage. That’s what made each performance unique. But this crowd felt different, like one breathing, volatile entity. One slip, one wrong word, and the performance could turn disastrous. Which might not be so bad, she reminded herself, considering this was her last performance at this dive.


She silently groaned as Skull Cap and five of his pack forged their way to the front of the crowd.


“How about you and me taking this outside,” he boomed. “You can show me how well you can blow”—he leered—“my—mind.”


The crowd responded with clapping and catcalls.


She envisioned plunging the knife straight into the moron’s heart. But in truth, her fury was directed at herself, for being blinded by the illusion of Nikki Flynn who was all hype and no substance.


Blade paraded the length of the stage, buying time, holding the knife in her left hand. Audiences were fickle, and these bikers threatened to turn her performance into a free-for-all. She needed to distract the audience, to lure them back to the performance rather than side with the bikers.


Skull Cap bawled out something blessedly unintelligible, but it still earned him laughs.


A trickle of sweat traveled along her spine. She knew how to handle hecklers. Never let them get under your skin. She noted Xavier shaking his head, willing her to ignore the biker.


Nope. Not tonight.


She wheeled on him. “Okay, hot stuff,” she said. “Are you man enough to ride the Wheel of Death?”


“Ride you, sweetheart? Anytime,” the biker slurred.


“How many of you want to see him take the ride of a lifetime?” Blade called to the crowd.


The audience burst into cheers and whistles. One of his pack shoved him, causing him to momentarily lose his balance.


Blade gave the audience a mischievous grin and winked. This is going to be fun.


The lights went out, the music exploded, the twin pillars of fire danced on cue—and Xavier stomped offstage, refusing to participate. He stood among the audience, arms crossed, disapproval etched on his handsome face.


I’m gonna bring this house to its knees. She grasped the biker’s hand and led him to the Wheel of Death. Just a little over six-feet in diameter, the black wheel dominated center stage. Skull Cap peered back over his shoulder, nodding to the audience. He tried to grab her, but Blade deftly side-stepped him and positioned him in front of the device. In a matter of seconds, she’d bound his wrists and ankles to the soft pine wood with leather straps.


Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):


Good Reads

BookBub



What’s your favorite thing about autumn:


Autumn leaves, candles, and Halloween.


What inspired you to write this story:


While researching the historical backdrop of San Francisco for a short story, I stumbled upon a striking poster featuring The Gibsons, renowned for their awe-inspiring knife-throwing act. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. As I laid my eyes upon the mesmerizing Veiled Wheel of Death, I instantly recognized its potential to shape the identity of my protagonist, Genevieve "Blade" Broussard.


Giveaway –


One lucky reader will win a $75 Amazon gift card



Open internationally.


Runs September 1 – 30


Drawing will be held on October 2.



Author Biography:


An adventuress at heart, Nannette Potter lives vicariously through her fearless and impetuous characters, inventing lives balanced on a knife’s edge. PIERCE THE DARKNESS, her debut international thriller, inspired by her Christian faith, was a 2022 Claymore Award finalist.


Beyond writing, she loves spending time with family and traveling the globe, where she dreams up future novels while sipping mango margaritas. An active member of Sisters in Crime, she lives with her soulmate and husband, Mark, in California’s Central Valley.


Social Media Links:


Nannette Potter website: https://nannettepotter.com

1 Comment


N. N. Light
N. N. Light
Sep 29, 2023

Thank you, Nannette, for sharing your book in our Fall Into These Great Reads Bookathon!

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