BOOKLIGHT #1 - OUT OF CONTROL by Sarah Alderson

Today, I bring you a new feature to the blog, I've been asked by a couple of authors lately to promote their upcoming novels and I thought I would create Booklight, spotlighting new books with excerpts, interviews and character profiles. Today's pick is Out of Control by Sarah Alderson, author of The Sound and The Lila Collection

Out of Control
Out of Control 
by Sarah Alderson
Publisher - Simon & Schuster UK
Release Date - May 22nd 2014

When 17 year old Liva witnesses a brutal murder she’s taken into police custody for her own protection. But when the police station is attacked and bullets start flying it becomes clear that Liva is not just a witness, she’s a target.

Together with a car thief called Jay, Liva manages to escape the massacre but now the two of them are alone in New York, trying to outrun and outwit two killers who will stop at nothing to find them.

When you live on the edge, there’s a long way to fall.

Click on 'Read More' to read an excerpt of this brilliant novel.  

Gunfire detonates all around. But I don’t notice. 
I’m just staring at the body of the cop, lying on the floor not fifteen feet from
me, his face no longer recognisable as a face, just a crater foaming with red,
with shards of white poking out of it.

Everything funnels in that moment; the world reducing to a shattering
hum and the completely unreal image of this cop dead at my feet. And then,
as if I’m the epicentre of a bomb, reality explodes around me, everything
sharpening, noise and heat rushing back in as though filling a vacuum. I
become aware of someone yelling at me.

‘Get these off!’ I turn slowly. The air feels suddenly dense as tar, as though I’m wading
through it. The boy is shouting at me. He’s standing up, straining against the
cuff that holds him to the desk, the muscles in his neck are so taut they look
like they’re about to burst through his skin, and for a moment that’s all I can
focus on.

‘Keys! Grab the keys!’ he yells. He’s pointing with his free hand in the
direction of the dead cop. For a few seconds I sit there unmoving. I cannot move. Then his
shouts manage to break through my daze.
‘They’re in his pocket!’

I tumble out of my chair to my knees and start crawling towards the
body, ducking automatically as bullets roar over my head. The glass above
the door explodes, shards flying like daggers. On the far side of the room a
police radio crackles to life. A disembodied voice on the other end cries for
help before a storm of static drowns it out.

I reach the cop and my hand hovers in mid-air as I stare down at the
mass of red and grey pulp where a head should be. Oh God, my body starts
to shake, nausea rising in a solid block up my throat, hysteria gaining a
foothold in my brain. I breathe through my mouth and force myself to focus.
Which pocket?

‘Hurry!’ The boy’s voice punches through the panic and my brain suddenly
throws a switch. It stops computing. Somehow I stop seeing the blood and the
gore. I no longer feel the sticky wet warmth beneath my bare knees. I stop
noticing the bullets. All I can hear is the gallop of my pulse thundering in my
ears and Felix in my head ordering me to stay calm.

Without thinking, I shove my hand deep into the front pocket of the
cop’s trousers and find the key. I tug it out and crawl as fast as I can back to
the boy through the carpet of broken glass which now litters the ground
between desks. The boy snatches the key from my outstretched hand and
jams it into the tiny hole. The cuff springs apart, freeing him.

Instantly, he throws himself on top of me. ‘Get down!’
A bullet smacks itself into a filing cabinet just behind us as we tumble
to the ground. His chest presses down on mine, my face is buried in his
shoulder. Quickly he rolls off me and pushes me towards a desk. I scoot
underneath it, banging the side of my head on the sharp metal corner of a
drawer unit. I let out a cry.

‘Shhh.’ His hand clamps over my mouth.

I tug his arm away. ‘What’s going on? What’s happening?’ I whisper.
Before he can answer me, the shooting stops and a silence falls that is
even more terrifying than the gunfire. The boy and I both freeze, staring at
each other unblinking, just a few millimetres between us. Together, enclosed
in the tight space beneath the desk, we strain to listen, and over the radio
static and the whir of the air conditioner overhead, I pick out faint cries coming
from somewhere in the distance; the unnatural keening howl of a wounded

The boy shifts his weight. His back is pressed to one cabinet, his feet
to the drawer unit. Carefully, he peers around the edge of the desk then ducks
quickly back, breathing fast. A bead of sweat trickles down the side of his face.
‘Shit,’ he murmurs, resting his head back against the cabinet and
closing his eyes.

‘Wh— ’ I begin, but stop when I hear the sly creak of the door being
pushed open. A boot crunches on glass. The boy’s eyes flash open and lock
on mine, holding me in place, silencing the scream that has risen up my throat
and is threatening to tear free. My legs begin to shake from holding still in a
crouching position. The boy’s right hand squeezes my knee hard – another
warning, his eyes wide and burning fiercely into mine, telling me: Do not move.
Something topples off a desk on the far side of the room and, over the
boy’s shoulder, through a gap between two filing cabinets, I glimpse the back
of a man’s leg. Whose? Is it a cop? Where is everyone else? What happened
to the cops who ran out into the corridor?

No. I shut off the thought, not wanting to go there.
The man in the room is standing stock-still with his back to us. What is
he doing? I can’t see. He’s facing the wall – the chalkboard with all the
homicide cases listed on it. The seconds seem to extend into whole hours,
days, centuries, and I’m holding my breath and the boy’s hand is still
squeezing my knee and my heart is bursting, literally bursting, as though too
much blood is pumping through it. My leg muscles are on fire and, without
warning, my foot slips. Not far. But it bumps the edge of the desk. The man
spins instantly in our direction. The air rushes from my lungs and the boy
shifts beside me, a single word that I don’t catch, falling from his lips like a
dying man’s prayer.

The man starts to head in our direction, is almost on us, when
someone somewhere else in the building shouts something that’s instantly
swallowed in a storm of gunfire and the man rushes out into the corridor.
The boy darts his head out and then he’s out from under the desk and
reaching for me.

‘Move!’ he says, pulling me to my feet.

OUT OF CONTROL comes to a UK Bookstore near you on May 22nd 2014!


  1. Sarah Alderson's books are always so fast-paced and entertaining though they leave me wanting in terms of depth. Still, this seems promising and I'll have to check it out for sure. Thanks for sharing, Emma!(:

  2. Oh, this seems like a thrilling ride! I wonder what events lead to this point. I haven't read any books by Sarah yet, but I know that Jasprit absolutely adores her books so cannot wait to start one. What a fun feature, Emma! Thanks for sharing:)

  3. Ahhhh!!!!!! How did I not know about this book Emma???!!!! I adore Sarah Alderson and this sounds AMAZING. I need to run immediately to Goodreads when I'm done with this comment and see if there's a US release date. Thanks for putting this one my radar! *massive hugs*


    Sarah always writes these wonderful entertaining books and I always gobble them up.
    Thanks for sharing the excerpt (and making me infinitely more excited)! :)

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

  5. I loved the Losing Lila series by Sarah Alderson. Action packed, fun plot and smoking hot guys? Sign me up. This sounds really exciting as well! Thanks for sharing, Emma! :)

  6. Thanks for sharing the excerpt... I loved the thrilling action!

  7. This looks great. I didn't like her paranormal series that much (Lila or something like that - I forgot title), but this is more my kind of thing.
    Thank you for sharing.

  8. I love love love Sarah's books, so I'm super excited about the release of this book and also how amazing is this excerpt? It sounds like we have so much awesomeness to look forward to! Thanks for sharing Emma! :)

  9. I hope this gets released in the US soon! Thanks for the excerpt. :)

  10. wow.. really does look great! thank you for sharing.

  11. This story is fast paced and exciting the whole way through. Enjoyable characters - I'd definitely recommend this book to others.

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