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Excerpt and Giveaway: Land of the Unaltered by Leti Del Mar

Thursday, July 04, 2013

Time to start the July blog tours and my first tour of this month is Land of the Unaltered VBT. In the following, you'll find an excerpt of Land of the Unaltered, book 1 of The Confederation Chronicles. Also, look for the necessary information, alongside the means to connect with author Leti Del Mar.

Enter via Rafflecopter for a chance to win a $25 Amazon GC (below)!

Land of the Unaltered
(The Confederation Chronicles #1)


Rose comes from the capital of the Confederation of Cities where its citizens live in luxury and the greatest fashion statement of all is being Altered. People change everything about the way they look as often as they do their hairstyle but Rose is different. Her position of privilege has made her an outcast and led her to suspect that something sinister is happening to the citizens and flees the capital along with a past that imprisons her in search of a fresh start in the Land of the Unaltered.

Flynn lives in the Land of the Unaltered and hates the capitol and everything it stands for. So when a spoiled capital girl is assigned to work with him, he wants nothing to do with her and is prepared to make her life miserable. But Flynn was not prepared for someone like Rose. She doesn’t fit the mold he expected and finds himself strongly attracted to her. As she continues to surprise and outwit him, they begin to forge a bond that is tested when they discover a secret that could change everything they know about Land of the Unaltered.

Land of the Unaltered is a Dystopian Romance and is the first installment of the The Confederation Chronicles.

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An Excerpt from Land of the Unaltered:

“Flynn! Get out here! Now!” I heard my dad bellow from the front office.

I dragged myself off of the stool I was sitting on in my lab and crossed over to the door separating the inner sanctuary of my lab with the front office. I found my dad smiling at me like a cat who swallowed a particularly tasty canary.

“What’s up?” I asked with apprehension. Even though dad was also my boss, since he had promoted me to my current position as head of quality checks at Rivers Mill, he had not once come to see me in my new lab.

“I’ve got a present for you.” His smile grew even wider.

People said I looked my dad, and I guess I sort of did. We both had the same black eyes and black hair, only dad kept his hair impeccably neat as befitting the owner of Rivers Mill. Mine was usually past due for a haircut and often ended up getting in my eyes. We also both measured exactly six feet tall. I guess it was better than looking like my mom. She walked out on my dad and me eight years ago and neither of us wanted any reminders of her.

“What is it?” When my dad had that look on his face, I knew I should be worried.

“I found you an assistant,” he announced with a grin. “It’s a present to go along with your promotion.”

My promotion didn’t sit well with me. In fact, I wished it had never happened. I’m eighteen now and I knew dad expected me to take over the mill one day, but I still cringed at the thought of being in charge of so many people.

“I don’t need an assistant, dad.” I needed to nip this in the bud. The best part about this position was that I got to work alone.

“Yes, you do. An assistant will let you get through more quality checks and increase your productivity.”

“No, it will make me slower. I’ll have to explain every little thing and then have to correct the mistakes my assistant will make.” This had all the earmarks of a disaster.

“Fine. You can use her in this front office.” He gestured to the barren room we stood in. “I’ve gotten some complaints.”

Oh hell. Here he goes again.

“People have said they come in here looking for you to check or receive their inventory and you are nowhere to be found. What do you do? Hide in there?” He pointed to the door that separated the front office from my lab.

He had a point. I hated talking with people and when I heard them come in, I would stay holed up in my lab and hope they went away. Maybe an assistant wouldn’t be so bad. Maybe an assistant could deal with all of the people so I wouldn’t have to.

“So who did you have in mind?” I asked, hoping he picked out a quiet and capable employee.

Dad hesitated before speaking. “She’s new to town.”

No way! I knew exactly what he meant; a brat from the capital.

Every summer, we would get a spoiled kid or two from the capital. They would step out of line and party too hard, or do whatever excessive thing the Lords of Excess thought too much, and they sent them to Eureka to work at Rivers Mill with hopes that the experience would straighten them out.

“No. Please no.” I didn’t want to beg, but I would if that would stop this horrific turn of events.

“She starts tomorrow.” Dad crossed his arms and I knew that the matter was settled. This was a done deal.

I needed a kid from Civitas like I needed a hole in my head. I hated the way they all looked. It was almost as if it was illegal to live in Civitas and not be gorgeous. The trouble was they all knew it. The Altered kids took their looks to an extreme. Some had crazy and unnatural hair colors. Others had rainbow stripe tattoos on their eyelids and check bones. They all had perfect faces, but the skin that stretched over their Altered bones never looked right. Sometimes their skin was too puffy, but most of the time, it was stretched too tight. Their emotions came across faker than a sock puppet.

Having a girl would be even worse. They all cried, but the girls would cry for days straight. They were all useless and afraid of the machines or of getting their hands dirty, but the girls would complain all day long. They had this entitled air that got under my last nerve. It didn’t help that they treated me like I was some kind of filthy, backwards and dimwitted oaf.

I kicked the side of the desk in a useless protest and decided to prepare for this unwelcome assistant as best as I could. I would just have to keep her busy and out of my hair until her family listened to her supplications to go home.

When she came in the next day, I knew she would be beautiful, but I could never have imagined beauty like hers. She was like a piece of walking sunshine and everything about her shimmered golden. Her long hair wasn’t pink or green like I was expecting, but a light brown. With the early morning sun behind her, her long tresses glowed.

She had the same perfect goddess body I expected of a girl from Civitas, soft and curvy in all the right places, long and lean everywhere else, but I didn’t expect her clothes. The capital city weirdoes liked to look strange, and they covered their clothes in spikes or glitter. One even wore wings. She dressed in simple brown pants and a snug, sleeveless white shirt which made me stare at her deeply bronzed skin. Most of the capital kids changed their eye color to match the clothes they wore, but her eyes were the exact color of honey. Everything about her radiated warm light and I almost held up a hand to block the glare I imagined coming off of her.

With the loud ticking of the wall clock, I realized that I was just staring at her, but I couldn’t think of what I was supposed to say. There were no words.

“Hi, I’m Rose.”

She smiled and then I was staring at full and coral-colored lips that curved over a row of perfect teeth. I eventually noticed she had her hand outstretched, waiting for a handshake, but I noticed it too late. When she dropped her hand and her smile, I knew I needed to get it together and fast.

I somehow managed to squeak a response. “Flynn.”

“Mr. Rivers said I would be working for you.”

Her honey-colored eyes swept over me, finding fault, I’m sure.

“This is your desk.” I pointed to the obvious piece of furniture. “You are to keep it clean and stocked. Behind this door is where I work. You are to knock before coming in and keep people out. Can you manage that?”

“Yes.” Her eyes went wide and her hands balled into little fists. I waited for a tantrum or tears, but neither came.

“Before you can assist me, you need to learn about lumber, the local forests and the mill in general. I want you to read those.” I pointed to the pile of a half dozen books stacked on her desk. They were each a couple hundred pages long and the dullest reading material I could find. The books should keep her busy for days, if not weeks. “Can you manage that?”

“Yes.” She stood there staring at me, her perfect face frozen in silent fury.

I turned around in an attempt to break the spell I found myself under and retreated behind my office door. Then I spent the day trying to forget her very existence by remaining sequestered in my office. I didn’t even leave for lunch.

After a while I grew disappointed with myself. I had never let one of them get to me before and I wasn’t about to start. Then I got angry with myself for falling for her looks, but it was only because she looked so different from the others. Naturally, that had to be the reason behind my staring problem. Why couldn’t she have stayed in Civitas with all of the other self-centered people? The most logical thing to do would be to forget her. After all, she wouldn’t last. They never did.

The last thought carried me through the rest of the day. When I finished everything I could do without leaving my office, I decided to finally face her and opened my door to find her sitting on the open windowsill looking out at the forest.

My rather austere front office had only a desk, a chair and a cabinet full of supplies for furniture. Unlike my busy yet comfortable lab on the other side of the office door, the barren contents of this front office bore silent testimony to its infrequent use. The one perk about the office was the location; at the far edge of Rivers Mill, it had an incredible view over acres of evergreen trees.

Rose sat with one leg tucked under her while the other swayed back and forth. I started to stare at that long leg but snapped out of it before I reached an even deeper level of stupidity.

“What are you doing?”

She turned those wide honey eyes on me but remained silent.

“I asked you to read those books. It’s important information you need to know if you’re going to work here.” I was pleased with the control I kept over my voice.

“I did.”


“I already did.”


“If you are not going to take this job seriously, you don’t need to come back.”

She closed her eyes and sucked in her breath. Still, the typical tantrum never came. When she opened her eyes, they flashed and darkened to the color of warm caramel.

“I am taking this job seriously even if you are not taking me seriously. I read those books. The one on forestry was good, the ones on local wildlife and fauna were fascinating, the one on processing lumber was dry but informative, the one on Rivers Mill was full of grammatical mistakes and the one on local forest legend was my favorite. I wouldn’t mind reading it again. The desk is stocked and clean and no one bothered you. I’ve done everything you have asked.”

I was unprepared for that angry little speech, and I needed to pause before responding.

“You read all of those books? Actually read them? Every word? Enough to take a test on them?”


“Humph.” It was all I could manage to say. I had no test to give, and wasn’t sure if I had read any of those books myself. I couldn’t even remember their titles.

“Do you have anything else for me to do today?”


“Then I will look forward to working with you again tomorrow.”

In a graceful maneuver, she hopped off of the windowsill and walked out the door. I went over to the window and watched her make her way down the road. She glanced around at the trees as though on a leisurely stroll. Rose stopped in her tracks and then bent down to examine a small squirrel that had crossed her path. She held still as the squirrel approached her with its nose wiggling. Rose reached out and gave it a quick pat on the head before the squirrel dashed up a tree.

Well hot damn. I needed to find some more books.

About the Author:

Leti Del Mar lives in sunny Southern California with her husband, daughter and abnormally large cat. When she isn’t writing, reading or blogging, she is teaching Biology and Algebra to teenagers. Leti is also a classic film buff, passionate about Art History and loves to travel.

Connect with Leti:



(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the blurb, cover, the giveaway and the excerpt as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya

(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the cover and the blurb, as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya - See more at: http://punyareviews.blogspot.com/2013/05/cover-reveal-land-of-unaltered-by-leti_10.html#sthash.atzEARq7.dpuf

(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the cover and the blurb, as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya - See more at: http://punyareviews.blogspot.com/2013/05/cover-reveal-land-of-unaltered-by-leti_10.html#sthash.atzEARq7.dpuf

(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the cover and the blurb, as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya - See more at: http://punyareviews.blogspot.com/2013/05/cover-reveal-land-of-unaltered-by-leti_10.html#sthash.atzEARq7.dpuf

(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the cover and the blurb, as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya - See more at: http://punyareviews.blogspot.com/2013/05/cover-reveal-land-of-unaltered-by-leti_10.html#sthash.atzEARq7.dpuf

(Note: I'm not responsible for the contents of this post, including the cover and the blurb, as all of the above were provided to me by the author.) ~Punya - See more at: http://punyareviews.blogspot.com/2013/05/cover-reveal-land-of-unaltered-by-leti_10.html#sthash.atzEARq7.dpuf


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