Today on the blog, I have the opportunity to share with you a message about human trafficking from the lovely author of Sempre, J.M. Darhower, as well as an exclusive teaser from the upcoming sequel.
Today, January 11th, is Human Trafficking Awareness Day in the US. The issue of modern day slavery is a subject I’m passionate about for many reasons. There are an estimated 27 million people around the world living in slavery, more today than ever before in history, yet so many people don’t even realize it’s an issue. But it could happen to any of us at any time, and it affects us all, whether or not we realize it. None of us are immune or untouchable.
I touch upon the issue in my novel, Sempre, and thought today would be a perfect day to share a teaser from the upcoming sequel. Keep in mind that this is straight out of the first draft, so the content may be changed or cut from the final published version.
Carmine leaned against the long table as he drank, his attention shifting to the front door. Hours had passed, yet the girl still stood there, as silent and still as ever. He studied her, wondering where she’d come from and how long she’d been trapped in Sal’s home. He couldn’t recall her ever being there before.
She snuck a peek after a moment, tipping her head up slightly so her blue eyes met his. Her brow furrowed when she saw him watching her, and she dropped her gaze again quickly.
“What’s your name?” Carmine asked curiously.
She peeked up once more but didn’t have a chance to respond before laughter sounded out behind him. Carmine turned at the noise of a clinking liquor bottle and froze, the glass nearly slipping from his hand as he stared at the badly scarred face. The familiarity took his breath away.
“Her name’s Annie, I think,” Carlo said, casually pouring a glass of scotch.
“Abby,” the girl whispered, her voice shaking as she corrected him.
“Not that it matters,” Carlo continued, shrugging. “You can call her anything you want.”
Carmine couldn’t tear his eyes away from him. Everything about the man screamed ‘vile’, from his callous words to his horrid face. “I prefer to call her by her name.”
Carlo looked over at him, studying him carefully. “DeMarco’s kid.”
“Makes sense.” Carlo brought his glass to his lips. “She’s your type.”
Anger swept through Carmine. He fought to control himself, forcing his feet to stay where they were. He wouldn’t be provoked. Not here, not now. “Excuse me?”
If you do anything at all today, tell someone who may not know that slavery still exists. Tell them about those 27 million slaves and about the countless survivors living among us. And tell them about the innocent victims, the ones who lost their lives, whose identities we’ll likely never know. Tell them, because someone needs to if we want to put an end to this cruel practice. Knowledge is power.
Hope you enjoyed reading the little tease! Can’t wait to have the book finished and released so you guys can read it.
I love Carmine, I truly do. His heart is so good and he stands by what it right, no matter the cost. And this teaser is perfect for representing the very real issue of human trafficking. I thank J.M. Darhower for sharing this valuable information on this day as well, as the Sempre sequel teaser!
Haven Antonelli and Carmine DeMarch had vastly different childhoods. Haven, a second-generation slave, grew up isolated in the middle of the desert, her days full of hard work and terrifying abuse. Carmine, born into a wealthy Mafia family, lived a life of privilege, never having to answer for anything he did. Both now seventeen, a twist of fate causes their worlds to collide, making them question everything they ever believed. Entangled in a web of secrets and lies, they learn that while different on the surface, they have more in common than anyone would think.
JM Darhower is the author of the novel Sempre (Forever) and the upcoming sequel,still untitled. Someday, if lucky, the second book will have a name. She lives in a tiny town in the Carolinas with her family, where she churns out more words than will eversee the light of day. She has a deep passion for politics and human trafficking, and when she isn’t writing she’s usually ranting about those things. Chronic crimper with a vulgar mouth, she admits to having a Twitter addiction. You can find her there.
*EDIT* J.M. Darhower will randomly pick 2 people from the comments below to get a Love146 t-shirt! There will also be two winners on her post that will be up
later today. I’ll add the link when it goes live. Here’s the link! JSYK, the teaser on her blog is of the NSFW variety. 😉