Shadow Me, Tahereh Mafi
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Tahereh Mafi

Shadow Me

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Fan favorite character Kenji Kishimoto narrates this gripping companion novella to Tahereh Mafi’s New York Times bestselling Shatter Me series, set during the explosive events in Restore Me!
Juliette is still reeling from Warner's betrayal, and Kenji is trying to balance his friendship with her with his responsibilities as a leader of the resistance against the Reestablishment. Things get even more interesting when an unexpected person from Omega Point’s past surfaces.
The ending of Restore Me left readers gasping, and this novella full of Kenji’s signature sass and big heart is the perfect story to tide fans over until Defy Me, the shocking fifth book in the Shatter Me series.
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And her hand is on my arm when she says, “I was hoping to explain later. But now you know. And now you have to run.”

Shit.

I turn to Ian, who’s standing to the left of me, and say, “It’s time to bail, bro. Let’s go.”

Ian looks at me, his eyes widening for a fraction of a second, and then he grabs Lily’s hand and shouts, “Run—RUN—”

The sound of a gunshot splits open a moment of silence.

It feels like slow motion. It feels like the world slows down, turns on its side, and swings back around. Somehow I think I can see the bullet as it moves, fast and strong, right at Juliette’s head.

It hits its mark with a dull thud.

I’m hardly breathing. I’m beyond pretending I’m not terrified. Shit just got real, super fast, and I have no idea what’s about to happen. I know I need to move, need to get the hell out of here before things get worse, but— I don’t know why, but I can’t convince my legs to work. Can’t convince myself to look away.

No one can.

The crowd has gone deathly still in the aftermath. People are staring at Juliette like they didn’t believe the rumors. Like they wanted to know if it was really true that this seventeen-year-old girl could murder the most intimidating despot this nation has ever known, and then stand in front of a crowd and peel a bullet off her forehead after an attempted assassination, looking for all the world like the experience was no more annoying than swatting a fly.

I suppose now they know that the rumors were true.

But Juliette looks suddenly more than annoyed. She looks both surprised and furious as she stares at the ruined bullet in the palm of her hand. From this vantage point it looks like a mutilated coin. And then, disgusted, she tosses it to the ground. The sound of the metal hitting stone is delicate. Elegant.

And then—

That’s it. Everyone goes apeshit.

People lose their goddamn minds. The crowd is on its feet, roaring threats and obscenities, and they all pull weapons from their bodies and I’m thinking, Where the hell did they get them from? How did so many of them get through? Who’s our mole?

More gunshots split the air.

I swear, loudly, and move to tackle Castle to the ground—and then I hear it. I hear it before I see it. The surprised gasp. The heavy thud. The reverberations of the stage under my feet.

Brendan is on the ground.

Winston is sobbing. Desperately, I push through my teammates, falling to my knees to assess the wound. Brendan’s been shot in the shoulder. Relief sags my body. He’ll be okay.

I toss the glass pill bottle at Winston and tell him to force a few down Brendan’s throat, tell him to apply pressure to the wound and remind him that Brendan’s going to be okay, that we just need to get him to Sonya and Sara—and then I remember.

I remember.

I know this girl.

I look up, pan‍
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I’ve got my own problems, my own burdens, my own pain and frustration, and besides, no one ever asks me about my day. No one ever follows up with me, no one ever bothers to peer beneath the surface of my smile. So why should I care?
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I’m already awake when my alarm goes off, but I haven’t opened my eyes yet. I’m too tired. My muscles are tight, still painfully sore from an intense training session two days ago, and my body feels heavy. Dead.
My brain hurts.

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