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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Excerpt & Giveaway: OVER THE RAINBOW by Brian Rowe

Only a few more days until Austen in August starts, but how's about one last non-Jane giveaway?
Today's potential-snagworthy title is author Brian Rowe's LBGT, oddball modern retelling of The Wizard of Oz,  Over the Rainbow.

Check out the excerpt below, and then enter to win a copy for yourself!

from Over the Rainbow:
“Get dressed, Zippy,” my mom said. “We’re going out.”

It was 11 AM but I was still in my PJs. I sat at my desk sneaking in a few chapters of the latest Goosebumps book, The Girl Who Cried Monster. “Where are we going? Do you need to get your medicine—”

She placed her finger against her mouth and said, in a whisper, “Shh. No questions. Your father’s only gone for a few hours, and if he found out I was doing this, he’d kill me.”

“Doing what, Mom?”

“Just do as I say. I’ll meet you downstairs.”

My mom had been battling stomach cancer for four months. We all had hope in the beginning—she was a fighter, and the doctor had been optimistic—but the chemotherapy and radiation weakened her, and Stage III became Stage IV.

She had lost forty pounds; she was tired all the time. She rarely left the house. So when she came into mybedroom that Saturday and told me we were taking a little trip, I didn’t even care where we were going. I was dressed and ready in ten minutes.

I ran to the bottom of the staircase. No sight of my mom. I checked the kitchen, then the mud room.

Then she honked the horn from the driveway.

I tried to get my mom to tell me where we were going, but she stayed focused on the road.

“Are we going to the mall?” I shifted in my seat, then shoved my feet against the glove compartment.

“No, Zippy.”

“Baskin Robbins?”

She patted my hand, butdidn't respond.

“We’re not going to Church, are we?” I asked. “It’s not even Sunday.”

“Just hold on. We’ll be there in five minutes.”

We didn’t say much the rest of the car ride. When she pulled off on Wanamaker Road, I searched my mind for what I was in for. Clothes shopping? Museum hopping?

She pulled into the parking lot behind a Red Lobster. We stayed put for a moment. I hoped the destination hadn’t been just some restaurant chain.
My mom leaned over, clamped her hand over her stomach, and moaned.

“Mommy?” I asked. I grabbed her arm. “What is it? Do you need—”

“I’m fine.” She leaned back up. “I’m fine, Zippy. Let’s do this. I want to do this.”
“Do what, Mom?”

She stepped out of the car and slammed her door. I followed. We passed the Red Lobster, and a small frozen yogurt shop. Our destination appeared on the left. My mom smiled and took my hand as we walked up the steps to the Mountain Grove Movie Theater. I saw the blinking lights from the marquee, smelled the fresh buttered popcorn from inside. I clasped my hands together in anticipation. I hadn’t seen a movie in months.

We stopped at the back of the line. I read the titles of the movies playing.

“What are we seeing?” I asked. “Hocus Pocus? The one with the witches?”

“No,” she said.

Free Willy?”


My heart sank when I saw the title at the bottom. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

“Oh,” I said. My dad didn’t take us to the movies much, but when he did, it was always animated Disney films. The first movie I saw in theaters was Beauty and the Beast; the second, Aladdin. I had yet to see a third.

My mom approached the ticket seller and pulled a ten-dollar-bill from her purse. “Two for Jurassic Park, please.”

I had to hold in a high-pitched squeal. I hadn’t even let myself look at the title on the marquee, because it made me sad. The movie had been out for two months but my dad refused to let me see it. He called it blasphemy, and utter nonsense, even though he had no intention of screening it first to judge it. He knew I worshippeddinosaurs, that I would love every second of it—and he still wouldn’t let me within a mile radius of any theater playing it.

“Oh my gosh, Mom. Really?”

She grabbed the two tickets and nodded at me, with a big, comforting smile. She turned around but I stopped her, wrapped my arms around her. I planted my face against her blue summer dress and just started crying. Cried because of the movie, cried because of her illness. A tidal wave of mixed emotions flooded through me.

She leaned down and set her hand under my chin. “Are you ready to see some dinosaurs, Zippy?”

“Boy, am I ever!” I said.

I had to close my eyes in a few of the scarier scenes—the first T. rex attack was so realistic I tried, and failed, not to scream—but for the most part I did well, watching my first live action movie in a theater. It was the greatest movie-going experience of mylife, sitting there in the dark, watching my favorite movie play out on the big screen, huddled next to my mom as we both enjoyed being terrified together.

My mom couldn’t have given me a better gift that day. Not just Jurassic Park, but that one last outing.

Just her and me.

As part of the Over the Rainbow blog tour, author Brian Rowe has offered up a bunch of amazing prizes for a bunch of lucky winners! Enter on the Rafflecopter below for your chance to snag and Amazon giftcard or 1 of 13 copies of Over the Rainbow!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Over the Rainbow by Brian Rowe
A modern re-imagining of The Wizard of Oz!

Zippy Green never meant to fall in love with a girl, but when she does, her ultra-conservative father tries to send her to anti-gay camp. At the Kansas City airport, however, she hides inside a giant suitcase and sneaks onto an airplane headed not to the camp, but to Seattle, where her online love Mira lives. Halfway through the flight, the plane barrels out of control and crashes into the ground, knocking her unconscious.

When Zippy awakens, she finds that most of the passengers have vanished. She doesn’t know what’s happened, but she’s determined to find out. She begins a quest on foot toward Seattle, and along the way, she meets a teenager with a concussion, a homeless man with a heart condition, a child without a shred of bravery, and a terrier named Judy. Together the group discovers that more than two-thirds of the world's population have mysteriously disappeared. But that's only the beginning...

All Zippy wants is to find her Mira, but before she can she has to contend with two outside forces. The first is her homophobic father, who does everything in his power to keep her from the girl she loves. And the second is extinct creatures of all shapes and sizes, including living, breathing dinosaurs, which have replaced the missing population.


  1. Oh my goodness! This sounds amazing! Ahhh! Added to my TBR, of course!

  2. Well, given that I only know the movie I'd say Dorothy, because Judy Garland was cute - yeah, I'm shallow like that...

  3. When I was little I LOVED the good witch because of her big fancy dress. I always wanted that dress. But I also liked the Lion because he was like me - scared of things!!!

  4. I love the scarecrow -- especially in the book version, but in the movies too. He's so smart even though he doesn't know it.

  5. The Wicked Witch was my favorite..Because I felt she was misunderstood!

  6. The book really does sound fun! Choose Me!

  7. My first thought was Elphaba but then I realized that was Wicked, not The Wizard of Oz. Hmm, how about Toto?

  8. i like dorothy..she is cute and fun :)
    thx u..

  9. I really like the Lion. When I was a child, my dad used to read me this book every now and then and he used to say to me "It's not easy to live your whole life not believing that you have the courage to be great and to be brave"

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