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Exclusive Book Excerpt: Tear Me Apart by J.T. Ellison

Exclusive Book Excerpt! 
Tear Me Apart by J.T. Ellison

Tear Me Apart

This is my first exclusive peak into an upcoming book and I am so excited to share this with you guys!  Follow along for J. T. Ellison’s new psychological thriller, Tear Me Apart! excerpts tour beginning in mid August, with long excerpts in consecutive order at each tour stop, followed by an Instagram tour and review tour beginning on 8/27!

To catch up with the first few posts and read the excerpt in order, check out these blogs first! 

Book Description: 
The follow-up to her critically acclaimed Lie to Me, J.T. Ellison’s Tear Me Apart is the powerful story of a mother willing to do anything to protect her daughter even as their carefully constructed world unravels around them.
One moment will change their lives forever…
Competitive skier Mindy Wright is a superstar in the making until a spectacular downhill crash threatens not just her racing career but her life. During surgery, doctors discover she’s suffering from a severe form of leukemia, and a stem cell transplant is her only hope. But when her parents are tested, a frightening truth emerges. Mindy is not their daughter.
Who knows the answers?
The race to save Mindy’s life means unraveling years of lies. Was she accidentally switched at birth or is there something more sinister at play? The search for the truth will tear a family apart…and someone is going to deadly extremes to protect the family’s deepest secrets.
With vivid movement through time, Tear Me Apart examines the impact layer after layer of lies and betrayal has on two families, the secrets they guard, and the desperate fight to hide the darkness within.

Excerpt Tour:

Monday, August 13th: Sweet Southern Home
Tuesday, August 14th: Books and Spoons
Wednesday, August 15th: Buried Under Books
Thursday, August 16th: Bewitched Bookworms
Friday, August 17th: That’s What She Read
Monday, August 20th: Book Reviews and More by Kathy
Tuesday, August 21st: Midwest Ladies Who Lit
Wednesday, August 22nd: The Book Diva’s Reads
Thursday, August 23rd: Jathan & Heather
Friday, August 24th: Helen’s Book Blog
Here is your officially peak into Tear Me Apart by J.T. Ellison! 

When she arrived at the hospital and put the car in Park, the tears ended. She’d wiped her face, fixed her hair. Vowed to be strong for Mindy. And for Jasper. And for everyone. Because that’s what mothers do. And Lauren is great in a crisis. Ask anyone.
Now, she is doing everything she can to stay calm and in control. Mindy is so strong, so driven, so determined—so perfect—seeing her daughter broken and bleeding in the snow, and now unconscious on this impersonal bed, breaks something inside her. She doesn’t want to be overly emotional in front of Mindy, who hates scenes. Keeps Lauren at arm’s length when she makes a fuss. Mindy has a cold, calculating streak in her—which is why she is such a brilliant athlete and competitor. She can turn the emotions off and on at will. It is a trait Lauren continually worries about. Did Mindy get it from her? From Jasper? They are both excellent compartmentalizers. Have they done their only child a disservice by being overly rational?
Oh, her leg…it looks hideous. Lauren doesn’t want to think about what this accident might mean. Lesser injuries end careers. And she doesn’t know what will happen to her little girl if she can no longer ski.
A burly dark-haired man comes into the room. “I’m Joe, from radiology. I’m going to take her to X-ray now. You guys stay here. We’ll be back in fifteen.”
“Can’t we come?” Lauren asks.
“We’re going three doors down. You can come if you want, but trust me, I’ve got her.”
She gives the boy her best mother look, a steely-eyed glance that usually makes even the strongest young people quake in their boots. He smiles. “Come on then, let’s go.”
The X-rays are quick. Lauren has a hard time watching. The radiographs pop up on the screen, one after another. The angles of Mindy’s bones are so wrong, and the very thought that she is seeing under Mindy’s skin makes her stomach queasy. It’s too intimate. At least Mindy is still out cold from the morphine, and doesn’t feel the chilly steel of the plate beneath her, doesn’t hear the snick and whir of the X-ray camera, doesn’t hear her father peppering the tech with questions. She lies inert under a thick lead apron to protect her as Joe from radiology takes shot after shot. Lauren knows Mindy will be furious when she finds out. She is private, her daughter. Aloof. Protective of her personal space, even from her parents.
The tech won’t answer Jasper’s questions, and Lauren can see them both getting frustrated. “We aren’t allowed to give opinions,” Joe says for the third time, but mutters under his breath so that they overhear the dreaded words: “Compound fracture of tibia and fibula.”
The rest are denials.
“Can’t say for sure.”
“The surgeon will talk to you.”
“Bad break, yes.”
True to his promise, they are back in the room in fifteen minutes flat.
Jasper begins his research into Mindy’s injury, fingers flying on his phone. Lauren fusses with the pillow, trying and failing to get her daughter’s head to stay in a spot that looks comfortable. A tall blonde, all messy ponytail and shiny engagement ring, walks in, glances at the chart, lifts the medicated towel and looks at Mindy’s leg, then faces Lauren and Jasper.
“Hey, Mom and Dad. Got yourself a tough girl here. We saw the crash. We’re lucky she only broke her leg.”
“You were watching?” Jasper asks, and despite himself, his face glows with the praise and attention. He’s a stage mother of the worst sort when it comes to Mindy’s talent. It makes Lauren happy. It is the only way they can manage the pressure of having an athlete of this caliber. He is in charge of Pride; Lauren is responsible for Humility. They needn’t worry—Mindy’s charm belays all. She is what they call the real deal—a tough, hardworking athlete who recognizes her gifts but doesn’t let them go to her head. She has no close friends, but she has the respect of the skiing world, and that is more important to her than sleepovers and proms and whispered secrets in the night.
They’ve done well with her. Yes, perhaps Lauren too has a dash of pride for producing this remarkable creature.
“Watching our hometown girl? You betcha. It was a horrible crash, and too bad, she totally had the lead.” She crosses her arms over her chest, the ring winking in the light, and is suddenly forbidding, like an angel of wrath descending on the room. “So, brass tacks. We’ve already called Dr. Stuart. He’s our best orthopedic surgeon. We sent an SUV to get him here safely. The storm’s getting worse, but he’s coming in to work on Mindy. We’re going to take her straight in and see what’s what.”
Taking possession of their daughter, like she’s a car being repossessed. Lauren steps in front of the bed, effectively blocking Mindy from view. “I’m sorry, but who are you again?”
“Oh, sorry, Mom. I’m Dani, Dr. Stuart’s PA. I’ll be assisting Dr. Stuart in the surgery.”
“Surgery?” they say in unison, concern bleeding through. They can’t help it, they’re parents, after all.
“It’s the only way to put these bones back together. Dr. Stuart will come in and explain everything to you afterward, but we have to get the wound cleaned out before a bacterial infection starts. These open fractures can get nasty. He’ll most likely need to put in a rod to stabilize things. It’s going to be rough for Mindy for the next few weeks, but you’ve raised a seriously tough girl, and she’s in great physical shape. She’ll be back on the slopes in no time.”
Abhorrent visions dance through Lauren’s head, her girl limping around, her leg permanently scarred. What will she think of this mar on her otherwise smooth and perfect beauty? Lauren has no idea how Mindy will react. She has no scars on her lean body, a miracle, considering. Will she freak out, beg for plastic surgery? Be stoic, wear it like a badge of honor? If Lauren is honest with herself, she thinks it will be the latter. Mindy is so tough, so unlike other girls her age.
Movement, a whispered gasp from the bed. “Mom?”
Lauren grabs Mindy’s hand. She is groggy and pale, and Lauren’s heart constricts. Oh God. My baby. I dont know if I can handle this. Why cant I be the one whos hurt? Why cant I shoulder this pain?
“Don’t move sweetie. Your leg is broken. You need surgery.” She can’t help it; tears roll down her cheek.
“I know. Don’t cry, Mom. It will be okay. This happens. They’ll fix me.”
Brave, so brave. Comforting Lauren. At the sting of the role reversal, Lauren sniffs and smiles, pulls herself together.
“Yes, tough girl, they will. You’re going to be just fine. Dr. Stuart is the best orthopedic surgeon on staff.”
The PA slaps the chart back into place. “That’s right, Mindy, we’re going to fix you right up. So kisses and hugs, family, it’s time to put this little egg back together again.”
As instructed, they kiss and hug their drawn, pale daughter. They stay strong. They assure and pet. There are no more tears, no more weaknesses allowed. If Mindy is going to be strong, then damn it, so will Lauren.
Yet, as they wheel her away, Lauren has a moment of sheer panic. A premonition of sorts. Something is not right with their world. Little does she know, this is only the beginning.


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