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Thursday, 11 September 2014

Book Blitz: The Undead: Playing for Keeps by Elsie Elmore

WOOT, WOOT! What am I, an owl? *facepalm* What's up guys? Today, I have a book blitz for The Undead: Playing For Keeps by Elsie Elmore. It's about zombies which I think is pretty cool so enjoy!

Title: The Undead: Playing For Keeps
Author: Elsie Elmore

Genre: Paranormal, Young Adult

Publication: September 3rd 2014

When an undead woman with serious de-comp issues stalks sixteen-year-old Lyla Grimm, her hope of rescuing her rock-bottom reputation takes a back seat. Especially once Lyla’s new talent of resurrecting the dead draws the attention of Eric, a Grim Reaper with a guitar and a chip on his shoulder.

While Lyla navigates the gossip-ridden halls, Eric works to gain her trust and discover why Death’s clients aren’t staying down. If she passes on her gift, his death-messenger destiny might be altered. But the closer he gets to Lyla, the less sure he is of his plan. The dead are way easier to deal with than the living.

Gossip explodes, the Grimm family implodes, and desperation sets in. Death wants the gift and a soul. Lyla and Eric face hard choices with hidden consequences. Sometimes life’s choices aren’t really choices at all.

Interview with Elsie Elmore, author of The Undead: Playing for Keeps

What led you to write YA paranormal and corpses becoming reanimated?

Explaining my warped creative process is challenging because the stories I tend to create all begin with “What if?” That simple question can take me down a rabbit hole of possibilities and I never worry about whether an idea is plausible. In my mind, the boundary for reality is permeable.
The Undead started as a “what if” after a personal experience. The story then began to unfold in my mind, but it never ventured near The Walking Dead, which is a series I was addicted to once. I wanted the return to be less problematic and gory than the zombies in the apocalyptic stories.

Are the characters in The Undead based on real people?
Every character I create comes from bits and pieces of people that I’ve encountered, but no one person translates into a full character in one of my stories. At least not yet.

Does Eric play the guitar because you play the guitar?
No, Eric plays the guitar because he’s a gifted musician and because I think the guitar is one of the coolest instruments a guy can play. I took piano lessons for several years as a child, but I would not impress anyone with the skills that have remained after all those years.

Is The Undead a series?
I wrote The Undead as a stand alone, although the door was left slightly ajar at the end. While Lyla, Eric and Ben’s tale could go on, it will be up to the reader to determine what happens next.

What’s your favorite genre to read?
I like so many different types of fiction. I have specific favorite books and favorite authors that span romance, action, drama, suspense, and memoir (and for adult, NA, and YA audiences).

Excerpt Chapter 9

Tap. Tap. A knock rattles against my car.

From out of the darkness, Mrs. Weller’s pale face presses against the passenger side window.

A quick intake of air is all I manage before I freeze.

She’s here.

Skin sags off her face, creating gray pouches beneath her glazed eyes. But they don’t look like eyes anymore, just opaque circles. Her smooth silver curls jut out in tufts and frizzes around her head.

My insides tighten like someone’s squeezing them, lungs included.

Her rickety finger rises. She points to the empty passenger seat.

Does she want to get closer? In the car closer?

Her hand moves above the lock and she taps on the window again.

Crap! The passenger door’s unlocked.

I lunge across the seat and slap down the lock.

Mrs. Weller’s eyes track my hand touching the window before her. She taps faster with her fingers.

I jerk my hand back and scoot my body across the seat as if the window can’t stop her. I need to get farther away. But there’s nowhere to go.

Cool air rushes in from my window.

“Crap! C’mon, c’mon, c’mon,” I mutter and feverishly crank my window handle, urging it to work faster.

My arm muscles burn.

When I look back up, she’s still there, on the other side of the window, tapping with those bony fingers. The dashboard light shows details of her grayish skin. Bulging veins riddle her neck, and dark shadows cover her hand and cheek.

She paws at the handle. Each knock echoes inside me.

I punch the gas pedal and tear out of Cassie’s driveway backwards, bumping over brick pavers that line the driveway and fishtailing near the mailbox. I dart all the way into the road and pull my wheel hard to the right. My car rocks back and forth when I brake. Burnt tire smell hangs in the air and dust clouds my headlight beams.

I scan each window, searching for her.

Cassie’s yard instantly darkens and I struggle to make out shapes without my headlights. My heart pounds like KX’s big drum. I shift the gearstick into drive and turn the wheel, checking each side slowly. If she gets in front of me, I’ll hit her. That will get rid of her.

But I can’t hit what’s not real.

Because she’s not, right?




About The Author

Elsie Elmore lives in North Carolina with her husband and two kids.
She loves the color red, has an appreciation for chocolate and coffee that borders on obsession, writes stories that challenge the laws of nature, and wishes fall temperatures would linger year round.

Elsie is a member of several writing organizations: RWA, SCBWI, and WSW. The Undead : Playing for Keeps is her debut novel.



  1. I totally agree that guitar is the coolest instrument for guy to play :) I haven't heard of this one but it seems like a really interesting mix. Thanks for sharing :)

    1. Thanks so much for reading :) and guys who play the guitar are instantly hotter than guys who don't.


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