With turkey day looming like triple-decker punkin’ pie, I thought a little gratitude was in order for all the amazing support and enthusiasm that’s been served up to me and the Kelly boys in such a cornucopia of abundance. So for all our blog subscribers I have a Thank-you-for-giving Day present to munch on in between heaping helpings of you favorite holiday binge foods: the first THIRTY pages of The Dream Palace, my new YA fantasy/mystery/sci-fi/thriller (because, as all you Paul fans know, one genre is never enough for me).
This special Dream Palace subscriber newsletter will go out late Wednesday night or early Thanksgiving Day, so if you haven’t signed up yet, there’s still a little time left. Just click here now to sign up for more fun freebies, ebook gift codes and other fun surprises. And now to tantalize your turkey-primed tastebuds, here is the first short chapter of The Dream Palace:
In the Dream Palace it is always nighttime.
The door is so big I can barely see the top. I watch the children run around me. They giggle and laugh and push and shove and chase and shout, “You’re it!” as they go inside. They never pay much attention to the door. I can’t stop staring at the dark brown oak, smooth as marble from all those happy hands brushing against it. There are huge iron bolts connecting the wooden slats, with the faces of children molded into the exposed metal. The faces are shiny too. But they’re not smiling.
The door hangs on iron hinges from the stone walls of the palace gate. It opens in the middle and locks with a wooden post that’s bigger than a railroad tie. It locks from the inside. A little boy could never reach it, even if he stood on another boy’s shoulders. If he could, it still wouldn’t matter. The crossbar is far too heavy for his tiny hands to budge.
I know, because I’ve tried.
My name is Chris. In the Outside, I’m thirteen years old, but whenever I go to the Dream Palace, I talk and act and look like I’m a kid again. I don’t want to go back there tonight. I didn’t last night either. Or the night before. But I know in my heart I’ll always keep coming, over and over, until I get it right. Until I do what I have to do. Until I look at that starless velvet sky overhead and see the first sign of sunrise.
Until I find Daisy.
Thanks again, everyone! There will be more mysterious breadcrumbs sprinkled about as the Day O’the Big Dead Bird approaches, so stay tuned and tell your friends that any friend of yours is a friend of Paul’s. Unfortunately, for them.