By A.D. Starrling
Release Date: June 16, 2014
Paperback, 394 pages
Genre: Urban Fantasy / Action / Mystery
FROM THE AWARD WINNING AND NOMINATED SERIES SEVENTEEN.An immortal healer.An ancient legacy reborn.;A chain of cataclysmic events that threatens to change the fate of the world.When a plane crashes in the Amazonian swamp where Conrad Greene is attempting to live out the rest of eternity, the jaded immortal who was once one of the Bastian First Councilâs greatest assets stumbles across a conspiracy involving the recently elected president of the United States.
Caught in the middle of the intrigue is US Secret Service agent Laura Hartwell, the one immortal on Earth most likely to put a bullet through Greeneâs skull.
Greene is coerced into returning to the life he had left behind by the leader of the Bastians and reluctantly agrees to assist the Americans in their investigation. As disturbing incidents start to unfold around the globe, Greene and a team of elite human and immortal agents must track down an elusive organization hell-bent on shifting the power balance of the world.
Can Greene stop the deadly countdown that threatens to alter the course of human history and regain the trust of the woman he loves?
The riveting and fast-paced third installment in the award-winning, supernatural thriller series Seventeen is finally here.
July 21 - Sou thern Mess Moms â Review & InterviewJuly 22 - Brooke Blogs â Character ProfileJuly 22 - A Book Addict's Delight â Top TenJuly 23 - Jess Resides Here - InterviewJuly 24 - Penny Writes â Review & InterviewJuly 25 - Indie Authors You Want to Read â Character InterviewJuly 28 - Let's Talk About Books - ReviewJuly 29 - Laura's Online Interests â Character ProfileJuly 29 - Pinky's Favorite Reads â Character InterviewJuly 30 - Like a Bump on a Blog - Special PostJuly 30 - A_TiffyFit's Reading Corner - ReviewJuly 31- Karin Baker â Hosted by C abin Goddess - ReviewJuly 31 - Rayna Noire â PlaylistAugust 1 â Fa nGirlish.com â 2 for 1 Friday ReviewAugust 1 - Tracy Riva Books & Reviews - Review
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1. Across the Sky by Emilie Autumn is the song for the prologue. This is a relatively slow one for those of you used to my more raucous playlists. I came across this artist quite accidentally, while browsing iTunes for music that could help inspire scenes in the book. I felt âAcross the Skyâ fitted the prologue quite well and I think the singer's haunting voice projects the feelings of the characters and the era that it takes place in.
2. The Night by Disturbed is for Chapter 1, which was originally going to be the second prologue. The bittersweet sorrow expressed by this song was perfect for that moonlit fight scene and its disastrous conclusion.
3. Just Stop by Disturbed is for the beginning of Chapter 2. This song gets the adrenaline going and I felt it suited Conradâs call to adventure rather well.
4. Fear by Disturbed is for the final scene of Chapter 2, when the path of Conradâs life is irrevocably changed by what he discovers. The alarm he feels means that he has no option but to enter the fray.
5. Shadows by Red is apt for Chapter 4 and Conradâs reflection on all that he has lost.
6. This song is for Chapter 5 and Conrad reliving memories of the years that changed his life. This is Fight Inside by Red. Close your eyes when you listen to this one. Amazing rhythm and words!
7. In the Shadow by Evans Blue is for Chapter 6 and the first time Conrad Greene and Laura Hartwell speak in decades. Again, I hope the bittersweet words reflect Conradâs emotions during that conversation.
8. This is another song for Chapter 6, when the action goes into overdrive once more and the chase begins as Conrad races toward the FedEx Field. This is Lose it All by Bulletproof Messenger. I love the urgency of this song and I feel it reflects the tension in this scene rather well.
9. And the chase continues in Chapter 7 with Pain Redefined by Disturbed. The heavy, fast beats were great for this scene.
10. Sick by Adelitas Way is for Chapter 7 still. The tormented feeling you get from this song is ideal for the fateful meeting between Conrad and Laura.
11. Another for Chapter 7, this is Lipstick Lies by Oceans Divide. This is for the Command Control scene and the urgency of the situation when they realize how great the impending threat might be.
12. This song gives me goose bumps! The beats, the lyrics, all of it reflects the desperation Conrad experiences at the start of Chapter 8. This is Die Trying by Art of Dying. This would be the theme for the movie if Greeneâs Calling ever made it to the big screen.
13. The chorus of this song completely captures the electric tension at the end of Chapter 8. This is Breathe into Me by Red. Absolutely amazing lyrics and tune that reflect what Conrad is trying to do.
14. Following the intense action of Chapter 8, Conrad finds himself in the hot seat at the start of Chapter 9. The playful feeling of Love-Hate Relationship by Trapt reflects his emotional turmoil at the situation he ends up in.
15. In Chapter 9, Conrad has to make some heavy confessions he would rather have kept to himself. This song shows this quite well. This is Confession by Red.
16. Chapter 10 is where we meet the bad guys and start to get a sense of what they are about. This song is Against You by Lacuna Coil and I think it demonstrates their intent and ambitions.
17. Cage the Beast by Adelitas Way perfectly reflects Conrad's frustration and anger at what is asked of him toward the end of Chapter 10.
18. This song is for Chapter 11 and the start of a fresh mission. This is Wide Awake by 32 Leaves. The words say it all, really.
19. The mission has just begun and the bad guys put in an unexpected appearance. Upsidedown by Lacuna Coil is the song for the first half of the chase scene that features in Chapter 12.
20. And now for the second part of Chapter 12's chase scene. This is Just Run by Digital Summer.
21. This song is for Chapter 13 and the devastating fresh tidings that bring a renewed sense of urgency to Conrad's mission. Broken Wing by Thousand Foot Krutch shows the teamâs distress at what they are faced with.
22. The ramifications of recent world events have Conradâs team working a trail that will eventually lead them to Europe in Chapter 14. This is The Collapse by Adelitas Way.
23. And the action speeds up again in Chapter 15 & 16. Another Way to Die by Disturbed was just right for the challenges they faced in Germany.
24. Following the devastating blow suffered at the hands of their enemy, Conrad and his team are more than ready to meet the next challenge. This song reflects their renewed determination. This is Give Me Something More by Lacuna Coil.
25. And the action continues in Chapter 18. This song is for the Leipzig scene and the rooftop chase. This is Scream By Adelitas Way. I like the urgency and resolve this song evokes.
26. This song is perfect for what happens between Conrad and Laura in Chapter 18 and the building sexual tension between the two soulmates. This is Tongue Tied by Earshot. I love the beats and the words.
27. This song is for Chapter 18 and the first part of the reunion between lovers. Inhuman by Thousand Foot Krutch is just plain sexy and dirty, and exceedingly appropriate for what they do to each other.
28. And for the second part of the lovers' encounter, this is The Worst Way by Cinder Road. And the action just keeps hotting up.
29. Chapter 19 sees some pretty explosive combat and the first close encounter between Conrad and the enemy that has so far eluded him. Violence Fetish by Disturbed shows the raw danger and visceral emotions of these scenes.
30. This is for the start of Chapter 20 and the battle between Conrad and a formidable foe. I'm Not Afraid by Lacuna Coil can be interpreted as both Conradâs and the enemyâs feeling.
31. Heavenly Answer by Bulletproof Messenger is for the second part of the fight in Paris and Conrad's subsequent rescue efforts to save his team.
32. To The Edge by Lacuna Coil portrays the emotions experienced by Conrad and his team in Chapter 21 as they come to realize that the enemy is planning something even more deadly.
33. Chapter 22 sees a fresh setback for Conrad and his team as the enemy's recent actions begin to show international repercussions once more. Wait by Earshot shows their rising despair.
34. Daylight Dancer by Lacuna Coil is the first song for Chapter 23, which recounts the formidable history of the enemy. Though most of this chapter is dedicated to backstory, I felt it was crucial to understand where Conrad's foes had come from.
35. Fragile by Lacuna Coil is the second song for Chapter 23 and the story of the enemyâs burgeoning plans. I like the sense of vulnerability and strength the words and rhythm evoke.
36. Blind Man by Black Stone Cherry is for the transition from Chapter 23 to 24, when past meets present once more and you start to experience the build up to the final arc of the story.
37. And the tension continues to rise as Conrad and his team uncover another trail that could lead them to their enemy. The song is Beyond The Stars by Evans Blue.
38. One of my favorites from the playlist, this song is for the start of the action in Chapter 25. The Army Inside by Lacuna Coil was just perfect for the desert scene and the infiltration of one of the enemyâs facilities.
39. And the action continues in Chapter 26, with Conrad and his team pitted against the enemyâs defences. This is Revolution by Oceans Divide, another favorite track of mine from the playlist.
40. Chapter 27 sees a major setback for Conrad and his team as the enemy starts to show their true intentions. Paradise Lost by Hollywood Undead is apt for the apocalyptic opening scenes, especially that chorus.
41. This song is for the end of Chapter 27, when the final pieces of the puzzle start to fall into place and they feel dawning horror at what they are up against. This is Break by Oceans Divide. One of my favorites from the playlist.
42. Sickened by Disturbed is the song for the start of Chapter 28 and the build up of tension that precedes the ultimate battle.
43. And we're nearing the end of this fantastic, evocative playlist. This Time It's Different by Evans Blue captures Conrad's emotions at the final battle draws closer.
44. And it begins! This is Best of Me by Bulletproof Messenger, for Chapter 29. I adore this song and the feeling of absolute determination it reflects.
45. Whenever I start a new writing project, I look for new songs to make a playlist that will ultimately reflect the story in question. Sometimes, the songs I choose end up triggering entire scenes inside my head. Warrior by Disturbed was THE song for King's Crusade. In the case of Greene's Calling, the end of the final battle wrote itself when I listened to Going Under by Trapt.
46. This song is for the emotionally charged scenes at the end of Chapter 29. This is Where Is The Edge by Within Temptation.
47. And we're nearing the end of the playlist and the book. After the climactic ending of Chapter 29, I felt this song best showed what happened in Chapter 30 and that dramatic Epilogue. This is Live Forever by Farewell Disaster.
48. And it's over folks! The final song of the Greene's Calling music playlist is the one I would personally choose for the end credits if the book was ever made in a film. This is Rapture by Hurt. Close your eyes and just listen to those words and that beat.
Conrad Greene ran across the wet, sloping lead roof of the Banqueting House, his breath misting in the cool night air. Moonlight flashed on metal to his right. He caught a glimpse of a blade falling toward his neck and ducked. The sword skimmed past his head with a faint hum. Feet skidding on the slick surface, he spun around, dropped to one knee, and lifted the short, silver-gilded staff in his hands.
A grunt sounded above him as the burly swordsman brought his weapon down once more. The edge of the blade struck the staff hard, raising sparks in the gloom. The manâs lips pulled back in a vicious grin, exposing two uneven rows of stained teeth. The muscles and veins in his neck and arms bulged with superhuman strength as he drove the sword into the staff.
Conradâs elbows slowly folded toward his chest. Air left his lips in a low hiss as the tip of the manâs blade inched closer to his left eye. He pushed back with the staff with all his might, dark spots dancing across his vision.
A figure dashed past them on the left. Conrad caught a glimpse of soft, brown curls. His heart stuttered inside his chest. He swore, fell back, and rolled out of the way of the falling blade.
He landed close to the balustrade that ran around the top of the building and climbed swiftly to his feet. Ignoring the swordsman charging toward him, he peered through the rainfall at the dark shapes engaged in a fast-paced and deadly battle on the moonlit rooftop. His eyes sought and found the woman who had run by him.
She was almost at the north end of the terrace, where a young man with brown hair and eyes stood confronted by three armed attackers; blood from the wounds on his left shoulder and flank had already soaked through his long-sleeved, ruffle shirt and stained his leather jerkin.
âWilliam!â the woman yelled, her voice edged with fear and desperation. She passed the weather vane on the sloping roof and unsheathed the rapier at her waist.
Relief darted across the younger manâs face at the sound of his name. He glanced at the woman over his attackersâ shoulders and raised his own blade to block another strike.
Conrad clenched his teeth. He turned to face his opponent and twisted one of the metal rings on his short staff. The weapon extended and a spear blade sprang out at either end. A loud battle cry preceded the attack of the burly swordsman a heartbeat later.
Conrad blocked his blade, kicked him in the groin, and hooked the staff behind his neck. He yanked the manâs head down at the same time that he drove his knee up into his face. A guttural groan left his adversaryâs lips, and he slid to the ground, unconscious.
A flurry of activity to the right captured Conradâs attention. Another group of men had rushed onto the rooftop terrace of the Banqueting House. He scanned the other fighters around him, anxiety twisting his stomach; he and his companions were now heavily outnumbered.
His eyes suddenly widened. The newcomers had drawn their swords and were heading resolutely for the running woman and the wounded man still fighting at the north end of the building. Knuckles whitening on his staff weapon, Conrad moved to intercept the men.
The woman reached the figures at the edge of the terrace. She stepped in front of the injured young man and swung her thin blade around in a flurry of strikes and blocks at his three attackers. Rage darkened her face and a roar left her lips. The men fell back under her fierce attack.
The wounded man sagged behind her and gripped his bleeding limb. Even from a distance, Conrad read the fear and confusion on his features. The man turned and flinched when he met Conradâs eyes.
The expression on his face left no doubt in his mind. William Hartwell was the one who had betrayed them. Bile flooded the back of Conradâs throat. Hartwell looked away. His lips moved, forming words that were lost in the stormy night as he shouted something at the men trying to kill him.
For an infinitesimal moment, the woman faltered, a flicker of incomprehension flashing across her face. She cast a quick look over her shoulder at the one she was trying to protect. Their closest assailant moved and brought down his sword. The blade arced across her left arm, carving a deep cut from her elbow to her wrist.
A cry escaped her lips. She took a step back and warded off another blow inches from her neck. Hartwell moved forward then, anger blazing across his face. He raised his sword and joined in the fray once more.
Conrad got to within twenty feet of them before he crossed paths with the four men he was trying to head off. He raised the double-bladed spear staff and spun it through the air. The gilded wood deflected the silver swirl of swords that danced toward his body while the jagged tips blurred, slicing and stabbing through flesh. One man fell, his fingers rising to the spurting crimson stream pouring from the wound on his neck. Another followed him to the ground seconds later.
A single scream suddenly shattered the night.
The sound was a knife that cut straight through Conradâs soul. He blocked a blow to his head and looked to his left.
William Hartwell had backed up against the balustrade. Conrad froze and felt time slow down.
The young man tipped over the edge and fell from the terrace, dragging his three attackers with him. The woman leapt forward through the curtain of glittering rain, crystal drops crashing on her skin, her movements heavy and sluggish in that stolen moment of stillness. She leaned over the balcony, fingers clutching desperately at the figures plummeting toward the ground. Her hands closed on empty space.
The bodies struck the street three stories below with a dull thud.
Time unfroze in a cacophony of sounds and sensations. Thunder rumbled across the heavens, underscoring the battle cries around Conrad. Cold wetness drenched his hair and face, bringing the sharp scent of the storm to his nostrils and a tangy taste to his lips. Lightning tore a brilliant, jagged path across his vision and made him blink.
Heat suddenly erupted across his chest when a blade slashed his skin. Blood bloomed on his shirt. Conrad scowled and focused on his two remaining adversaries. By the time he had disposed of them, the woman had disappeared from the rooftop.
He looked at the other fighters around him and felt a rush of relief at the sight that met his eyes; despite the odds, his men were winning.
âGo!â yelled someone to his right. The red-haired figure who had spoken danced nimbly out of the way of a blade and stabbed his opponent savagely in the chest. Pale eyes glanced at him for a second. âWeâve got this, Greene!â
Conrad bobbed his head jerkily and twisted the ring that retracted the staffâs spear blades. He raced for the door that led inside the building.
By the time he reached the ground floor, the wound on his chest had stopped bleeding. He knew without looking that the skin beneath his torn shirt was once more unblemished.
He found the woman on her knees by the pile of bodies that lay in an awkward tangle of broken limbs at the north base of the Banqueting House. She was leaning over William Hartwell, sobs shuddering through her as she stroked his pale face with shaking fingers; blood from the wound in her arm mingled with his where it seeped from the irregular depression on his temple. Hartwellâs chest rose and fell shallowly with his breaths. He was unconscious.
The woman looked around at Conradâs footsteps, her hazel eyes wild with anguish.
âDo something, please!â she begged.
Conrad sank to the ground next to her, his voice frozen in his throat. He placed his left hand on the young manâs head and closed his eyes.
A burst of energy flared inside his chest and pulsed down toward his elbow. It darted through the birthmark dancing along his forearm and flashed to the ends of his fingers. He inhaled deeply and guided the flow of his power inside the broken body of William Hartwell.
Bone popped beneath his hand. The young manâs flesh slowly began to knit together.
Sweat broke across Conradâs brow. The battle had drained him of much of his strength; he could feel Hartwellâs torn tissues resisting his ability to heal them. He ground his teeth together and willed his exhausted body to cooperate.
âWhatâs happening?â said the woman. Panic raised the pitch of her voice. She grabbed Conradâs shoulders and shook him, her fingers biting into his skin. âWhy isnât he waking up?â
Conrad sagged as he felt his own life force start to ebb; he was nearing the limits of his ability. He blinked and swayed. Dark blotches clouded his vision. The womanâs frantic words became a roar in his ears.
A moan suddenly broke through the rush of blood inside his head. He looked down and saw Hartwellâs eyes open. Within the dark pupils of the man he had come to know and love as a brother, Conrad Greene read the words he could no longer utter.
William Hartwell wanted to die. He also yearned for something else.
Conrad gasped and slowly pulled his power back inside his own body, his fingers trembling on the cooling skin of the dying man. Hartwell shivered beneath his touch.
âWhy are you stopping?â yelled the woman. âSave him!â
Conrad knew there were only seconds left; he could feel Deathâs shadow approaching through the thunderstorm raging across the city. He leaned down and brought his lips to Hartwellâs ear.
âI forgive you,â he whispered, his vision blurring with tears. He pulled back slightly and saw Hartwell blink once. The young manâs last breath left his mouth and caressed Conradâs cheek.
William Hartwell stared unseeingly at the rain falling from the night sky, his face serene and his body relaxing in death.
âNo,â mumbled the woman. âNo, this isnât happening!â Her voice rose to a scream. âWhy did you let him die? Why? Goddamn youâ!â Grief overwhelmed her and she wept brokenly.
Conradâs heart shattered inside his chest as he looked at the woman he loved and saw hate dawn in the depths of her hazel eyes.
AD Starrling was born on the small island nation of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean and came to the UK at the age of twenty to study medicine. After five years of hard graft earning her MD and another five years working all of God's hours as a Pediatrician, she decided it was time for a change and returned to her first love, writing.Her debut novel Soul Meaning (Seventeen Book #1) has won and been nominated for several awards, as has her second novel Kingâs Crusade. She currently lives in Warwickshire in the West Midlands, where she is busy writing the next installment in the series. She still practices medicine. AD Starrling is her pen name.